Gary Johnson

Gary Johnson on CNN: "On the Social Side of Bernie, I Get It"

L.P. presidential hopeful outreaches to the progressives, calls Trump on immigration "crazy."

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Libertarian Party (L.P.) presidential hopeful Gary Johnson (the former Republican governor of New Mexico, who brought the L.P. its highest-ever vote totals in 2012 with 1.27 million) wants Bernie Sanders fans to know, hey, if they don't have their guy to vote for in November, take a close look at him.

ABC

In a CNN website write-up of a Johnson interview with CNN"s Chris Cuomo today, the candidate said of Sanders:

"When it comes to economics, we come to a 'T' in the road," Johnson said. "But on the social side of Bernie, I get it."

Johnson said that according to the nonpartisan online political quiz 'iSideWith,' the candidate he most aligns with is Sanders.

Acknowledging his mutual appeal with Sanders to disaffected, socially liberal voters, Johnson called Sanders' social values "very libertarian."

Johnson called the Democrats' likely winner Hillary Clinton the "ultimate technocrat." He also slammed Donald Trump for "saying some things that I just think are ridiculous and would disqualify any other candidate" and leaned on his record as a border state Republican governor to say Trump's immigration fearmongering and wall-building dreams are "crazy."

Johnson stressed, as he does often, that being involved in the national presidential debates after all the parties have chosen their nominees is vital to the L.P. candidate doing well. And given the Commission on Presidential Debates rules—which Johnson is challenging now in an unresolved lawsuit—that requires getting over 15 percent in multiple polls.

So far, he's only appeared in two national polls I know of, Monmouth in March, which gave him 11 percent, and a Public Policy Polling one this week in which he gets 4 percent.

The CNN news clip linked above containing the writeup of his Cuomo interview, strangely, contains video of a completely separate Johnson CNN interview, this one with Michael Smerconish, in which Johnson is a little slow on the uptake to sum up the Libertarian platform (but then does get out the ol' socially liberal, fiscally conservative, all about individual freedom and liberty with a recognition that most of our foreign interventions cause unwanted unintended consequences).

"I gotta get in the polls," he says to Smerconish, and he does. He ends with a near-desperate sounding plea on that point.

Smerconish interviewed a bigwig at Quinnipiac polling and completely failed to get him to answer whether his poll would ever consider including Johnson, in a quite evasive way. (Hat tip to Sebastien Fauste for sending me the link in the previous sentence to Smerconish's interview with Quinnipiac's Peter Brown.)

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  1. If only the right fuhrer would come along, we could achieve the libertarian paradise on Earth.

    1. That would cause a right furor.

    2. Ron Paul was there in 2008 and 2012. But he wanted to throw the power ring in the volcano, not wield it like Thanos.

      1. Aslan insisted he destroy the Ring.

  2. Has he even secured the libertarian nomination?

    1. Not if he keeps saying shit like “I’m like Bernie”.

      1. I seem to like McAfee better every time I see Johnson. Maybe I just hate everyone on TV now (except Stirling Archer).

        1. Well, McAfee might siphon some of the crazy vote from Trump, but I think Johnson (for all his faults) is likely to get more votes and therefore preserve ballot access.

          1. No, Trump has the crazy vote pretty much locked up.

    2. No, Drake: “No candidates are endorsed by the party, nor will be, until delegates select the party’s nominee at the LP national convention on May 26-30, 2016 in Orlando, Florida.”

      Source.

      1. That oughtta be a real shit-show….

      2. The LP ought to just hold the convention online tonight, and get the nominee out there to start building momentum. Saves money too.

  3. ugh. Socially I hate those fucking dirty hippies. Like seriously there are a million types of deodorants out there to pick from that isn’t patchouli oil.

  4. Love that dead air from Quinnipiac.

  5. Johnson said that according to the nonpartisan online political quiz ‘iSideWith,’ the candidate he most aligns with is Sanders.

    Acknowledging his mutual appeal with Sanders to disaffected, socially liberal voters, Johnson called Sanders’ social values “very libertarian.”

    So McAfee?

    1. I really don’t know whats worse the fact that the presumptive presidential nominee took an online quiz to determine where he fell politically or that a Libertarian can’t even make the ballot of said online quiz.

      1. I think this is worse: “… a Libertarian can’t even make the ballot of said online quiz.”

        I suspect that Johnson is trying to appeal to would-be Sanders voters should Sanders drop out in order to increase Johnson’s number of voters.

        1. *Looks up “inarticulate”, sees picture of self*

      2. All the LP candidates are on the online quiz. JOhnson didn’t even agree with himself 100 percent.

      3. But he’s included by Project Vote Smart’s.

  6. Is stealing all of my hard earned money “economic” or “social”?

  7. Johnson said that according to the nonpartisan online political quiz ‘iSideWith,’ the candidate he most aligns with is Sanders.

    Acknowledging his mutual appeal with Sanders to disaffected, socially liberal voters, Johnson called Sanders’ social values “very libertarian.”

    Is it just me, or is my Johnson getting soft?

      1. Nope. Not looking.

        Not gonna do it. Wouldn’t be prudent at this juncture.

  8. That GayJay stock photo does him no favors.

    It needs alt-text like, “Dude… huh… yeah.”

    1. Seriously, he looks like he’s about to ask if i’ll drive him to Taco Bell AGAIN.

      1. Reason doesn’t carry water for any candidate. They don’t print the stylized “Hope” poster for any politician.

  9. While I understand Johnson trying to appeal to progressives, I hope he doesn’t forget that with many of them supporting state-mandated associations over free ones, many are nothing more than left-wing fascists.

    1. with many of them supporting state-mandated associations over free ones

      ah, but so does he

    2. …many are nothing more than left-wing fascists.

      In other words, Fascists.

    3. Hey, why not? If Trump can win by flooding the GOP with former hard-hat Democrats and HANDS OFF MY MEDICARE! old people, then Johnson can win by flooding the LP with disaffected Occupy-types. Method to his madness?

      1. disaffected Occupy-types.

        For a second I was all, “Huh?” then I was all, “Oh.”

  10. Setting aside for a moment that he’s insane and this sounds insane (yes, yes) this is quite an interesting development. American politics is a very team-oriented full-contact sport. It’s not a market. That’s not how it works. We all divide up into teams along neatly delineated political philosophies, and we ask whose team is biggest in what spot. (Yes, yes. We’ll fight about that later, keep up.) And while there’s a bit of poaching, it’s only of those who might have arguably been on your team but for fine detail.

    This makes two candidates (yes, yes) openly treating vote blocks as market share to be won, regardless of ideology.

    Well, here’s a thing.

    *pops popcorn*

    1. Is Johnson’s insanity a recent development? I liked him a lot when he was running as a Republican, now he sounds stoned all the time.

    2. Hey, why not just make the Everything Party?

    3. “We all divide up into teams along neatly delineated political philosophies”

      What political philosophy does the 40% of people who identify as independent follow?

    4. Most people wouldn’t know what a political philosophy was if you gave them one on a gold tablet. They just vote for the candidate they have heard about who seems toughest to them.

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  12. What is the social side of Bernie? All I’ve ever heard Bernie scream is “Billionaires! Fiftee… Billionaires… living wa… Billionaires… it’s not fai… Billionaires!”

  13. Jesus, who am I going to vote for now? Definitely won’t be Sanders or anyone who brags about being similar to him politically. There you have it ladies and gents, our likely nominee.

    1. Why not carve yourself a goodly portion of roast beast and relax?

      Several of us have already speculated that Johnson is trying to appeal to would-be Sanders voters who would probably not vote at all should Sanders “suspend” his campaign.

    2. Vote LP anyway so they can get to the 5% mark.

      1. I’m thinking 2% would be a good target this time.

  14. Smorgasboards of positive rights are just so very libertarian.

  15. Why isn’t REASON.COM pushing Gary Johnson?

    Practically every person voting for Hillary Hates Hillary.
    Lot’s of republicans that hate Trump aren’t voting at all.

    What an amazing compromise.

    1. Seems like they are. Why are they ignoring McAfee?

  16. Living in L.A., I know far too many of Bernie’s Brownshirts. Whenever I tell them I a libertarian, they reflexively say that Bernie is “basically a libertarian”. They are, of course, delusional and insane, but, if that were not the case, they wouldn’t be Bernie’s Brownshirts in the first place. If Johnson can judo-leverage their delusion to get votes for himself and the Libertarian party after Bernie drops out, more power to him.

    –Trump is the president America deserves! Gary Johnson 2016.

  17. So Johnson opposes freedom of association and says he’s in many ways like Bernie Sanders. Yet he calls himself a Libertarian.

    Maybe he’s a trans-Libertarian?

  18. Gary Johnson is far too impotent. He’s got the passion and personality of Eeyore, and positions that fell off the libertarian Thomas the train into some hollow ditch somewhere unable to fulfill even the smallest of voids.

    Vampire 2016 to fill your libertarian voids.

    McAfee 2016 to be the President.

  19. Maybe Cuban for VP? Or how about a libertarian leaning feminist like Camille Paglia or Christina Hoff Sommers? The ticket needs some sprucing up.

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