New Hampshire Democrat: 'Free Staters are the single biggest threat the state is facing today'
The Free State Project, described by Brian Doherty in these pages two years ago as "an interesting experiment to get 20,000 libertarians to all relocate to New Hampshire to reshape local and state politics in a place where those numbers are politically powerful," has been successful enough to make at least some New Hampshire Democrats declare this ragtag group of fill-in-the-blank-archists as Enemy Number One.
At the progressive site Blue Hampshire last week, a diarist named The Money Magician warned that the 20,000 signature moment (at which point, in theory, those who signed up for the pledge to move to the Live Free or Die State would make good on their promise) could come as early as 2015. "I wish there was some way to repel these people," the Magician lamented.
The interesting comments section ("A libertarian is an Anarchist that is too lazy or too scared to move to Somilia," writes tchair) included this bit from cyndychase, later identified by the Free Keene kids as "District 8 State Representative Cynthia Chase of Keene." Excerpt:
In the opinion of this Democrat, Free Staters are the single biggest threat the state is facing today. There is, legally, nothing we can do to prevent them from moving here to take over the state, which is their openly stated goal. In this country you can move anywhere you choose and they have that same right. What we can do is to make the environment here so unwelcoming that some will choose not to come, and some may actually leave. One way is to pass measures that will restrict the "freedoms" that they think they will find here. Another is to shine the bright light of publicity on who they are and why they are coming. […]
Here in Keene we had a couple show up on Central Square to take part in our weekly Saturday morning peace demonstration. In the course of the conversation they allowed that they were Free Staters considering moving to Keene. The folks on the Square told them in no uncertain terms not to do that because Free Staters are not welcome here. Cheshire County is a welcoming community but not to those whose stated goal is to move in enough ideologues to steal our state, and our way of life.
Charming! Commenter Lucy Edwards, who appears to be a recently failed Democratic candidate for the New Hampshire House of Representatives, replied with even more tolerance:
A friend had a young man from Texas contact her to rent a room she had available. She got in touch with me to ask what to do when he told her he was coming to NH as part of the Free State Project. Here's what she decided to tell him: "I told him that I already rented the room, and that I didn't appreciate him coming here to change our state government, it was an insult to me. That if he wanted to make change to start self examining his own life in a mindful way and stay in Texas to make the changes he wants not come here. And not contact me again."
In what nefarious ways are the Free Staters changing New Hampshire? Getting marijuana growers out of jail by using the rare tactic of jury nullification, among other things.
Link via Instapundit. Reason on the Free State Project here, including Brian Doherty's great December 2004 piece "Revolt of the Porcupines." I interviewed Free State Project President Carla Gericke for Reason.tv in 2011: