Campaigns/Elections

LP Convention Delegates See Johnson As Anti-Barr

|

Las Vegas – The Libertarian National Committee has begun its 2012 convention in an atmosphere of ballot access battles and optimism about a presidential candidate who combines political strength and libertarian credibility.  

Organizers expect a little more than 650 delegates out of a possible 1,042, which is apparently pretty good. Nearly every delegate I talked to expressed optimism about the candidacy of former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson.

Free State Project and voter reform activist Stephen Cobb campaigned for Ron Paul during the New Hampshire primary but as a life time member of the Libertarian Party he said he was ready to cast his ballot for Johnson.

"This is my first time and I am really looking forward to vote for Gary Johnson," he said.

Elizabeth Miller, a native of Dallas and a newcomer to the LP, said she thinks Johnson is the best candidate the party has had in a long time.

"He is far and away the most exciting and potentially most powerful candidate they have ever had," said Miller, 43

Even one delegate who is running for the nomination himself, and changed his middle name to "Libertarian", is excited about Johnson.

Not everyone is bullish about a Johnson candidacy though.

Though their ideological histories are very different some see a similarity between Johnson and the party's 2008 nominee, Bob Barr: they are both former Republicans who sought refuge in the LP. Johnson, unlike Barr, has serious libertarian credentials and a history that satifies even the most skeptic Libertarians.

"Many of us are troubled by the similarity. Republican come lately, promises to be a good Libertarian, and then turns around and isn't," said Erik Viker, a delegate from Selinsgrove, Pennsylvania.

When asked if he could tolerate a Johnson candidacy Viker said, "I would be more than OK with it." 

NEXT: Gary Johnson On Why He Changed His Mind About Running for President

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. Those are some serious grandpa pants.

    1. HEY! Those are the Official Libertarian Pants.

  2. Barr did have serious civil libertarian credentials.

  3. Article title translation:

    LP Convention Delegates See Johnson As Anti-Fake

  4. Four comments and no HURR DURR FAIRTAX yellingness yet?

    1. Those come after the fifth or sixth comment, R. Have patience.

    2. HURR DURR!!! FAIR HURR TAX DURR!!!

      John Linder is an idiot! Neal Boortz is a jackass!*

      Happy, TAO?

      Personally, I like most aspects of the Fair Tax. It’s just so difficult to sell and has so many moving parts to explain. It’s not pithily conducive to a campaign.

      *That one is true. I find the guy insufferable.

    3. I was trying to be civil for once.

  5. I’m voting — with joy in my heart! — for Gary Johnson, despite his probable nomination by the LP. Certainly not because of it.

    Maybe it’s just, y’know, every single LP member I’ve ever met in my life, but I’ve yet to have a conversation with a capital ‘L’ Libertarian where they didn’t come off as anal retentive, humorless, and vaguely angry at the world… Objectivists straight out of central casting, bound and determined to affirm the stereotype.

    Ah well, I shouldn’t bitch. This will be the first Presidential election in my life where I’ll be voting for someone actually listed on the ballot. In ’88 and ’92 I wrote in Frank Zappa, and have written in Steve Albini since. Does Johnson have a hope in hell of winning this year? Nope… But for once I won’t be “throwing my vote away” on purpose; it will actually mean something when I pull the handle.

    1. While that’s pretty much true, I think Johnson’s personality can only be described as non-existent.

      He’s probably the dullest guest I’ve ever seen on Redeye, with the exception of Kurt Loder, who I suspect was asleep.

      1. I’m down with non-existent personality presidents: look where the current hipster pres has gotten us.

      2. Yeah, he’s OK on most issues, but his presentation style makes Ron Paul look like a great orator.

      3. Calvin Coolidge may have been the greatest president of the 20th century, and he didnt have a personality.

    2. I am disappoint that you would let death stop you from endorsing a popular clump of atoms to become president.

  6. Very good article.

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.