Gary Johnson

Gary Johnson: The LNC Chair Race is Exciting! Interesting!


Las Vegas – Just before endorsing Wayne Allyn Root and Bill Redpath for at-large spots on the Libertarian National Committee, Gary Johnson reflected on the current battle for chair of the party. 

"It's exciting, it's interesting," he said.

While we were talking Johnson introduced his campaign manager, Ron Nielson, to LNC chair candidate Geoff Neale.

The thing is, Neale hasn't been elected chair yet. 

"Congratulations!" says Nielson.

"Well, I haven't beaten nobody yet," laughs Neale.

Nielson laughs, too.

"I have heard nothing but good things about you," Johnson says to Neale.

Johnson returns to talking with me. Does he think this is bad for the party?

"No, no. I don't. I really don't. It's help me understand the faction that I didn't understand. When I say factions I am not casting negative on either. There are those that believe this should be all about principle, which I happen to agree with, meaning that it has to absolutely be principled. Then I think there is a group that really wants to grow the party," he said, before Neale and Nielson moved off to the side to chat.

"The principled would argue that growing the party compromises the principle and I don't think you have to have that. As the presidential nominee I've been saying that. I've been saying you gotta be able to articulate Z but if you're gonna be able to get to E, that's a good thing," he said.

Johnson said he is looking forward to a brief break after the convention tonight to take in a show on the strip with his fiancé, Kate Prusack. 

NEXT: Sarkozy Defeat Prompts Euro Death Watch, Carla Bruni Reported "Disheveled"

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  1. R. Lee Wrights elected vice chair.


  2. Growing the party does not mean that we have to give up our principles, not at all. It is all about educating people about Libertarian principles. It is the responsibility of all of us to do so. Most of us are not going to run for office or even be that involved with elections, but we can educate our friends and family. I have converted a lot of former Rs and Ds to Libertarian, and in turn those have done likewise. Despite all of the negativity and lack of confidence in the past, I have never felt better than now about the chance of the LP party to become a 3rd major party.

    1. But how effective are you going to be in educating people in libertarian principles when our Presidential Nominee was a Republican until just a few weeks ago when he jumped ship in an act of unprincipled political opportunism?

  3. Johnson doesn’t really seem to get the point behind third-party politics.

    Oh, and LOL at the endorsement of Wayne Allyn Root for anything. Showing real good judgement there Gary.

    1. If the party ever got to the level where it was a credible option (i.e. people consistently believed it could win in a 3-way race) then I could see a move to “grow” the party. Until then it serves as a vessel for protest voting.

  4. Quick – somebody get Johnson a copy of “LP for Dummies”. I’ve had some ketchup in my fridge for longer than he’s been a Libertarian. He needs a clue.

  5. Gary Johnson changed his voter registration from Republican to Libertarian on December 28, 2011.

    1. When did Ron Paul, Libertarian hero, change his from L to R? Has he ever changed it back, by the way?

  6. Interesting article.

  7. I have no problem with the endorsement of Bill Redpath, but he endorsed Wayne Allyn Root? Really!?

    Wayne Allyn Root is so unlibertarian that he has publicly stated, “I would love for a libertarian like Gary Johnson…[to] get elected President, but I think we all know that’s not going to happen. So, therefore, it’s got to be Romney; there is no choice.”

    I’m sorry, Mr. Johnson, but a man who says that does not deserve to be on the LNC. Having Root on the LNC is a huge detriment to the LP.

  8. Johnson allegedly said, “The principled would argue that growing the party compromises the principle.”

    This is either a malicious strawman or, more likely, an unfortunate misunderstanding.

    We radicals do not say that “growing the party compromises” principles. Growing the party is completely find with us. In fact, it’s a very good thing.

    Rather, what we say is that compromising principles in order to grow the party compromises the party itself. That‘s what we say.

    We want to grow the party. We do, I assure you. But, we do not believe it is pragmatic to water down the platform; the thing that draws in voters, according to us radicals, is giving the voter a radical alternative. After all, nobody wants to “waste” her or his vote on a third party that offers little change from the status quo. Third parties have to be different in order to grab a voter’s attention, and they have to be prepared to present coherent arguments as to why profound change is necessary if they want to break the voter’s habit of voting for the two establishment parties.

    That is the radicals’ premise, and it is a sound one.

    Sincerely yours,
    Alex Peak

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