Gary Johnson

Gary Johnson's Poll Numbers Rising in Battleground States

Libertarian appeal growing in Virginia, Florida, North Carolina; Johnson hits 15% in Colorado.


Very promising poll numbers released this morning from Wall Street Journal/NBC/Marist, showing support for Gary Johnson and his Libertarian ticket growing in some battleground states.

Gage Skidmore/Foter

For example, in Virginia Johnson went from 10 percent support last month to 12 percent in this new August poll, which was conducted from August 4-10. When Johnson and the Green Party's Jill Stein are added to the presidential question, they shave three percentage points from Hillary Clinton (46 percent to 43) and two from Donald Trump (33 percent to 31).

In the wild west state of Colorado, Johnson hits the magic 15 (which he must get nationally in at least five polls to get into the presidential debates), up from 13 percent last month. In that state, the addition of Johnson and Stein to the mix cuts five points off Clinton (46 percent to 41) and three off Trump (32 to 29).

Both states show Clinton, obviously, far ahead of her Republican opponent, whose support in both states fell since July.

Johnson is also up from July in Florida, going from 7 percent to 9. And in North Carolina as well, the same jump from 7 to 9. None of those state polls give the slightest bit of encouragement to Trump and the Republicans.

More from The Wall Street Journal on the poll's larger national significance and technical details:

The results reinforce the findings of other national and battleground-state polls taken in the past two weeks: In the wake of the two parties' conventions and amid a series of setbacks for the Trump campaign, Mrs. Clinton has consolidated her base and widened her lead on a number of fronts….
Mrs. Clinton also continues to hold a dominant position in all four states when the field of choices is broadened to include Libertarian nominee Gary Johnson and Green Party candidate Jill Stein. In a four-way race, Mrs. Clinton draws more than 40% of the vote in all four states. In two, Colorado and Virginia, Mr. Johnson breaks into the double digits.

The poll also found that voters in all four states continue to have unfavorable impressions of both major-party nominees. For Mrs. Clinton, her negative ratings range from 52%, in Florida, to 59%, in Colorado. Mr. Trump's negative ratings range from 62%, in North Carolina, to 69%, in Colorado.

[Clinton] is backed by 92% of Democrats; Mr. Trump is supported by 79% of Republicans.

The polls surveyed 862 registered voters in Florida, 897 in Virginia and 899 in Colorado, and have a margin of error of plus or minus 3.3 percentage points. Also surveyed were 921 registered voters in North Carolina, with a margin of error of 3.2 percentage points.

NBC's own account of the poll.

Matt Welch last week schooled those who mistakenly stated that Johnson's polling was in some sort of free-fall.

NEXT: The Anti-Trump Conspiracy Theories

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  1. Polling has gotten so bad at its purported purpose of late, that I’m not putting any stock into any of the polls.

    1. All that matters right now is that Johnson get into the debates.

      1. Yeah, once his magnetism and charisma are on full display, people will flock to him.

        1. You know who else had magnetism and charisma?

          1. Magneto?

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          2. Magnet Man?

          3. Franz Mesmer?

            1. Bingo.

          4. G. B. Yntema?

          5. I finally caught up with the Libertarian townhalls. I have to say that Weld has much more poise and charisma than Johnson.

            Also, it’s very clear to me that they are both philosophically Republican-ish, but they’re still pretty darned good as compared to Trump and Clinton.

            1. Weld is a former federal prosecutor, Johnson is an active triathlete with more positive press exposure in the recent past? I dunno, both served 8 years as governors in blue states so I like both for a number of reasons, #1 and #2 being they’re not Drumpf or Clinton!

          6. Cordelia Chase?

            1. Nice. 🙂

            2. Go on…

        2. Sarcasm, that’s real useful.

        3. Hahahahahaha

        4. Hey…DEAD PAN!

        5. The “debates” are nothing but a Q & A session. A farce! Ask Rand Paul and Carly Fiorina.
          All that matters is that voters wise up. . . . . Not likely in your lifetime.

      2. That will effectively end his candidacy.

        1. But he can’t make real headway without getting in front of a national audience on the same stage as the major party candidates. That’s the only way he reaches enough voters and gets credibility. If he can’t cut it in the debates he will lose, yes. But if he doesn’t make it to the debates he will still lose. At least getting there gives him a chance. Hopefully he’ll get some debate coaching between now and then.

          1. The LP will win with every vote. By winning we do not mean putting some grinning idiot on the gubmint payroll. By winning we mean repealing bad laws, cutting taxes, legalizing freedom. Spoiler votes change laws better’n any lobbying outfit, and cheaper too…

        2. I don’t know. Have you ever watched Trump or Clinton speak?

      3. Yea, and if Weld gets in the VP debates he can help Tim Kaine with his gun control arguments!

      4. Very interesting reason! Not so bad...

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  2. The duopoly won’t want third parties to crash their joint press conference aka “debate,” unless they really think they have to.

    1. have to allow it, that is

      1. Gary Johnson would have to do a lot better than he is doing now, in a few more weeks, to meet the 15% threshhold in whichever cherrypicked polls they use to make his numbers as low as possible.

        Basically, a bunch of marginal Trump voters would have to have the epiphany right away that the guy they were holding their nose for is about to get an epic ass-whuppin, and that it is time to bail and pick someone else to run against Hillary.

        1. There is talk that 15% isn’t a hard fast number.

  3. I’m not saying that Johnson is polling so well because he took a pragmatic stance on certain issues, but I’d look at things differently if he’d taken a pragmatic stance and he were polling badly.

    Go ye into the world and preach the libertarian gospel, Mr. Johnson! Well, it’s not the libertarian gospel he’s preaching, really, but, you know, given current market conditions, this is the best we could have reasonably hoped for.

    A very wise man once wrote something to the effect that ‘The true purpose of libertarianism has always been to create more libertarians”, and if that’s the case, then the Johnson experiment with pragmatism is going splendidly.

    1. “the best we could have reasonably hoped for” would include at least being as libertarian as his major-party opponents.

      1. You honestly think Trump or Clinton is more libertarian than Johnson? I’d love to hear an explanation of that position.

        1. I don’t think Trump is into compulsory nazi cakes. I don’t know about Hillary.

          1. Trump is totally against all the bad parts of the cra.

            That’s a potus issue, for sure.

            1. Since Congress is considering possible amendments to the Civil Rights Act, and since the Obama administration is trying to amend the Act by regulatory edict, it *is* a Presidential issue.

          2. Gay wedding cakes are truly the defining issue of our time. Out of all of the issues a libertarian could be above everything else, that is truly the one.

            1. Because Johnson/Weld are absolutely sound on the other issues?

              1. Compared to Clinton and Trump? They are clearly far more libertarian, even if they’re not close to being doctrinaire purists (and Weld is definitely less libertarian than Johnson). It’s interesting that the same people who complain the loudest about how libertarians are overly concerned about purity (whenever the focus is on areas where doctrinaire libertarians and conservatives, or conservative-leaning libertarians disagree) are suddenly so concerned about it when it comes to Johnson.

                1. I wanted to puke in my mouth when Weld listed possible SC nominees.

                  I really hope if by some miracle GJ ends up the next president he tells Weld to stuff his SC nominee picks up his ass.

                2. Actually, I’d say it’s more accurate to turn that around: Those who complain the loudest about the Pauls and other ‘conservative-leaning’ libertarians seem overly willing to overlook Johnson’s faults when he leans left on certain issues or fails to endorse such basic libertarian concepts as ending the war on drugs.

                  Anyway, if he doesn’t do anything incredibly stupid between now and November, I’ll likely be voting Johson despite his failings.

                  1. *Johnson

            2. “gay wedding cakes” are part of the larger freedom of religion / association.

        2. Here’s an awful graph on it, Trump’s got the edge on some issues surprisingly.

          (Gary is the only good one on the Confederate Flag apparently though, so I don’t think anything more needs to be said)

          1. From the graph Immigration Issues Q4: Should children of illegal immigrants be granted citizenship?

            Jill Stein: “Yes. And abolish all national borders.”

            Umm, Jill, if you abolished all national borders, then you wouldn’t need…ahh, forget it.

            1. Yes, from just that chart I realized that the debates need Jill more than anyone.

              1. Ooh, she also does not want to transition public sector retirement plans to private plans because that would “jeopardize the financial security of senior citizens.”

                1. To be fair, it’s not as if any of the institutions the plans would be transferred to are actually private.

                  1. True. I was thinking more along the lines that any senior relying solely on public retirement plans for the next 20 years or so is already in jeopardy.

            2. “Workfare” is a form of slave labor

              I, uh, ok.

              1. Jill’s a gold mine of leftist stupidity. Egads.

          2. That’s a decent product. Saving that.

        3. I’d love to hear an explanation of that position.

          Eddie is a single issue voter.

          1. So you’d be fine with a candidate who was more pro-liberty than the major-party candidates, even if he disagreed with them on some social issue like, say pornography?

            1. Unless I’m mistaken, I’m pretty sure FDA has been generally supportive of Rand Paul, even though he deviates from strict libertarianism in a conservative direction on some issues.

              1. F d’A is a bit of a dick, so I was tweaking him about Darrell Castle.

            2. I probably disagree with GayJo on more issues than you do.

              But he’s what the Libertarian Party, libertarians and liberty needs at this particular juncture.

              But, as none of those three things are “Catholic,” I can see how wouldn’t care.

      2. Are you saying he’s somehow not that?

        Never mind.

        The point is that the results are there and under the Libertarian brand name.

        We score 10% or higher nationally? we score 15% plus in battleground states and more than the margin of victory?

        Then the Republicans looking for their next direction may look to us. It isn’t about Johnson. It’s about non-Libertarians voting for the libertarian label.

        The best we can reasonably hope for this election is to make a big enough impact that some of our concerns will be absorbed into one of the two major parties–like Howard Jarvis, environmentalists, gay rights activists, like Perot’s spending cuts were addressed by the Gingrich Congress, like the American communist party platform was adopted by FDR and the Democrats, etc., etc.

        That wasn’t going to happen when we were polling at a fraction of one percent. Now we’ve got a reasonable chance at some real influence. . . . even if Johnson isn’t the candidate you’ve always dreamed of.

        1. “Are you saying he’s somehow not that?”

          Compulsory nazi cakes.

          “The best we”

          What do you mean “we,” white man?

          Watch your fingers, the Overton Window is slamming shut.

          There are several standard libertarian positions which are now officially off-limits. Advocate those positions, and it will be “even your own candidate isn’t *that* extreme!”

          1. By golly, Eddie. Excellent points all.

          2. They’re not off limits. They’re just not positions taken by a somewhat unlibertarian LP candidate.

            If the Republican party implodes in the presidential election and the LP hits double digits, they GOP is gonna have to take a hard look at who they’re courting and who they’re snubbing.

            1. “Tonight on News You Can Use: Right-wing extremists say religious freedom is under attack in this country because businesses can’t discriminate. We are honored to have Libertarian Party statesman, former Governor Gary Johnson, in the studio tonight – Governor, your party is based on free-market principles, is there anything in free market principles allowing business owners to discriminate based on their personal religious beliefs?”

              “No, indeed, that would be opening up a black hole, I can assure you as a free market advocate and former Libertarian Party nominee that the government ought to put a stop to this sort of discrimination.”

              “We’ve been talking to Gary Johnson, a responsible Libertarian.”

          3. Clinton is on record against single payer health care. Does that somehow permanently discredit proponents of it just because the Democratic nominee isn’t that extreme?

            And how does Trump not do the same thing on a much broader array of issues?

            1. Don’t Poke holes in this theory.

          4. Compulsory nazi cakes.

            That’s the pragmatic stance I was talking about above.

            People who lived through the Goldwater era properly believe that Goldwater’s stance against the Civil Rights Act was a strategic mistake–even if Goldwater was right on the principle of free association.

            Losing a battle to win the war is an ugly way to make sausage. You know what’s even worse? Losing a battle to lose the war. The Civil Rights Act passed anyway, and Barry Goldwater never became President and could never shake the stigma of having voted against the Civil Rights Act.

            For libertarianish Republicans of a certain age (older than me) like Johnson and Weld, what Goldwater did was a colossal mistake. Isn’t the worst possible outcome when you get smeared as a racist for life, and you don’t gain anything from the sacrifice?

            “What do you mean “we,” white man?

            You’re a libertarian, aren’t you? If so, then “we” are libertarians.

            1. I’m a fusionist, check my handle. It’s like a libertarian who doesn’t like SouthPark.

              I just posted, below, an explanation of my views on the “pragmatism” issue.

              1. What does South Park have to do with anything?!

                You better never make fun of Trump for saying crazy shit.

                1. *Sigh*…there’s a book called South Park Conservatives, about “conservatives?and even iconoclasts who don’t consider themselves conservative” – they’re so hip and cool without being progressive.

                  It was my way of joking about a certain cultural sensibility which I have noticed in libertarians.

            2. Goldwater was also a sort of Obama card for the Republicans. By nominating him they convinced suspicious people like Ayn Rand that, despite all outward appearances, they weren’t nationalsocialists eager to exterminate Jewish culture and populations. By the same token Obama convinced voters the Dems had finally shed their ku-klux racial collectivism. But both those looter parties remain closer in outlook to Hitler and Stalin than to the LP.

        2. 2% means ballot access for down-ticket libertarians for the next 4 years in KY.

          That alone is a good enough reason for me to vote for him.

          When you are getting .99% of the vote, that doesnt come into play, but it does this year.

          1. We have the same issue here in TX. We need to get a statewide candidate (this year, Railroad Commissioner is the high profile one) to 5% in order to avoid petition drives for the next 4 years. Fortunately, we do have a strong LP candidate in the race.

    2. “A very wise man once wrote something to the effect that ‘The true purpose of libertarianism has always been to create more libertarians”, and if that’s the case, then the Johnson experiment with pragmatism is going splendidly.”

      Eh, more Libertarians, maybe.

      1. To me, that’s the whole justification for the Libertarian party–it’s an outlet to expose non-libertarian voters to libertarian ideas at a time when they’re thinking about politics. I’m skeptical that electing the right politicians is the answer to America’s problems–the true solution is to change the American people. But we don’t need everyone to accept that principle into their hearts along with everything else that’s good and holy to make the world more libertarian.

        To whatever extent Americans become more libertarian because they’re exposed to politicians like Rand Paul, Ron Paul, and Gary Johnson, that’s a good thing. People don’t just convert from one religion to another overnight. First they visit. They listen to some sermons. They talk to other people in the congregation. But you can’t covert their sorry ass souls if they won’t even come to your church and hang around.

        You didn’t always know everything you know now either.

        1. Great idea, Ken. Exposing young people to libertarian ideas must be the answer. That way they’ll know what their candidate is lacking before they step into the booth and push the button for him/her anyway.

          1. That’s how it starts, yeah.

            When I was old enough to register to vote, I registered Libertarian because I wanted to protest George H. W. Bush for breaking his “no new taxes” pledge. I was furious. I didn’t know what libertarianism was about. I just knew that if I wanted to use my registration to protest new taxes, that was the way to do it.

            That being said, before I was old enough to register, I was a huge fan of Ronald Reagan. I read this crazy book called “Free to Choose”. It was by an economist who was hailed by a lot of people in the Reagan Administration. I saw Reagan end the oil crisis by getting rid of stupid regulations.

            Libertarianisim is a religion few are born into. I’d read and enjoyed Atlas Shrugged before I knew it had much of anything to do with libertarianism. Before the internet, you had to know a lot about libertarianism before you knew there was a difference between libertarianism and Objectivism. Even now, I think it’s common for people not to know there’s a difference.

            1. Point is, yeah, people aren’t awakened into libertarianism with full and complete knowledge. You start thinking about things and start identifying them with libertarianism and then one day you start identifying libertarianism with you. We need people on all points in that arc. The ones who just found out about us because of Johnson are the most important of all. Maybe they won’t vote for us this time. I vote for Bush Sr. even though I’d registered libertarian. But maybe we’ll get their support in the next election.

              . . . or the one after that, or the one after that, or the one after that . . .

              1. You’re a complete tool if you think that the reason people don’t vote libertarian is because they don’t know enough about libertarianism. You need to face the fact that it’s a fringe ideology. It always has been, it always will be. Educating people isn’t going to change that.

                1. Most people know the strawman libertarian.

                  1. The only thing wrong with being part of a fringe movement is not understanding that you’re part of a fringe movement.

                2. Two things:

                  1) I didn’t say they don’t vote libertarian because they don’t know about libertarianism. I said they vote libertarian even though they know very little about it.

                  2) You’re a total tool if you’re misspelling your own name. It’s spelled “Schwifty”. Time to get schwifty in here. Now shit on the floor.

                  1. Alright, Ken. You do your best to keep the hope alive. One day people are sure to full on embrace libertarianism. It’s bound to happen. For now, just keep picking “good enough” knowing that “good enough” is not really libertarian.

        2. Right, Ken, I’m not trying to dump on you here. Having more Libertarians could very well wind up being better than not. However, Ron Paul (and possibly Rand) was more libertarian than Gary, so it’s possible that ground is ultimately being lost with him.

          1. well, they’re all pretty libertarian. And in my opinion, this while area is a sliding scale between classical liberalism and anarchists.
            If we can open the door and give people a few books, who knows where they’ll land.

          2. Gary Johnson is polling at 15% in Colorado.

            Feel it.

            1. “Gary Johnson is polling at 15% in Colorado.”

              Does that actually mean 15% of the pollees(?) are actually any closer to libertarianism?

              1. Yes!

                As much as somebody voting for anybody means anything, Ia poll that shows 15% want to vote for the Libertaian means they’re willing to vote libertarian.

                Last year, if you told me that the Libertarian candidate would score 15% of the people of Colorado at this stage in the game, I’d have laughed.

                I doubt they’re as libertarian as I am, but for election purposes, so what? If they’re libertarian enough to vote libertarian, then they’re libertarian enough for election purposes.

                1. “As much as somebody voting for anybody means anything, Ia poll that shows 15% want to vote for the Libertaian means they’re willing to vote libertarian.”

                  Then we’ve simply hit an impasse here. I say it just means that they’re possibly willing to vote for big-L GJ, not necessarily a libertarian.

                  If there are still elections in the future to come we’ll see who is more correct.

            2. Whoa, a whole 15% of whatever fraction of voters that was polled in one state-sized fraction of the entire country. Sure smells like a libertarian moment.

    3. Isn’t it ironic, don’t you think?

      1. It’s like rain on my wedding day.

    4. I agree. I think he could be doing just as well without totally trashing freedom of association, but most of his other moderate positions I can’t deny seem to be serving him well.

  4. Gary Johnson’s not getting this guy’s vote

  5. We keep thinking that GJ in the debates will somehow expose people to alternative ideas. That is utter bullshit. Debates are not debates, they’re TV shows. The stars get the lines, and the extras only exist for a few seconds here and there. GJ will stand silently for 98% of the debate, and when he’s finally asked a question, it will be of the “look how nutty and hopeless you are, how can you be serious?” sort. And five sends into the answer, he’ll get interrupted by the star, chaos ensues, moderators step in and move to the next question- which will not be directed to GJ.

    One of the tells of the rigging is the “rule” that if Hil mentions Donny, he automatically can respond and vice versa. Think either of the stars will mention GJ?

    Remember what happened to Rand, and this will be even worse.

    1. It’s still better than not being on the stage at all. Trump has shown us better than anyone else ever could that any publicity is good publicity.

      1. Yes, being on the stage worked so well for Rand.

        Remember, this is a TV show not a debate. GJ only exists as a minor prop for the stars.

    2. five sends

      Five seconds. I hate this keyboard.

    3. I’m hoping that Trump and Clinton tear each other down like sh1t-flinging chimps.

      Gary Johnson will need to duck to avoid the sh1t.

      That and a solid closing statement showcasing how unhinged Trump is, and how corrupt Hillary is. He can do it. He may be able to peel off at least one state.

  6. I hope one state just goes all out.

    1. Who will do it? Wyoming? New Hampshire?

      My money is more on Wyoming than New Hampshire.

      1. I’m guessing Utah. Trump snubbed Mormons, which is 2/3rds of the population of that state, counting the cultural / jack Mormons.

        It would be fucking awesome if the LP candidate won even one state.

        1. The problem for Mormons is that Gary Johnson is pro-choice.

          I think they’re more likely to vote for that Evan MacCullan guy.

          1. Or they hedge the bet, hope congress stays red enough for that to not matter.

          2. The nationalsocialists ain’t repealing the 14th Amendment any more’n the Dems are repealing the 2nd. Those are hobgoblins to frighten morons away from the other party. Voters should listen to what the Dem and GOP candidates say about each other and remember than when they see LIB on the ballot.

      2. Montana, Wyoming, new Hampshire, new Mexico.
        Not sure, Alaska might land up there too.

    2. What if by some magical chance New Mexico and Massachusetts go for their respective sons? That will be epic.

  7. Look at that dope. He can’t even flip you off properly.

    1. Look at that dope. He can’t even flip you off properly.

      Depends on who you ask. Trigger warning: Slate

  8. No linky, but Gail Collins has a column up about how a vote for Gary Johnson is a vote for the elimination of Social Security, the end of gun control and mandatory heroin injections for schoolkids. Because Libertarians.

    In fact, Gail Collins might be Tony. Her arguments against “wasting” your vote on anybody other than an R or D are exactly the same as his.

    1. … a vote for Gary Johnson is a vote for the elimination of Social Security, the end of gun control and mandatory heroin injections for schoolkids.

      I fail to see the problem with this.

      1. Here it is. It’s like Collins is *trying* to make me vote Johnson:

        “The only third party that might have a line on all state ballots is the Libertarian, whose platform includes eliminating Social Security, ending gun control and wiping out drug laws. This year’s Libertarian candidate is Gary Johnson, the former governor of New Mexico. Johnson does not seem to agree with the platform on many points, but to be honest, he’s not the world’s greatest explainer. Libertarians like the idea of a charisma-free candidate, since he’d be incapable of getting much done.

        “But truly, this is a silly choice. Voting for Johnson is exactly the same as staying home, except that it involves going outdoors.”

        1. And the Libertarians are never, repeat, never going to be elected.

          Collins * sounds like Nick Gillespie or whoever the fuck it is at Reason who wrote an article a few months back about how we don’t need to worry about Trump because he’ll never get nominated.

          * Gail Collins, not Susan Collins, who seems like a somewhat sensible person for a politician.

      2. I am opposed to the government giving schoolkids heroin injections.

        If parents want to inject their kids with heroin, they should do it on their own dime.

        1. That’s an NAP violation. The kids gotta choose to inject heroin.


          1. I actually found a sarcasm pointer, BTW, in a Mutt and Jeff cartoon in the Evening Independent for Feb 21, 1927.
            Back on topic, in Haight-Ashbury there was a fairly free market, but hardly anybody bought opiates because there was other stuff that was cheaper, non-toxic, non addictive and enjoyable to be had. Free choices are safer than prohibitionism at gunpoint.

      3. The only problem I see is that I’m no longer a schoolkid…

    2. Reading Gail Collins is like the taking of Peleliu – a bloody and ultimately pointless sacrifice.

    3. “…The only third party that might have a line on all state ballots is the Libertarian, whose platform includes eliminating Social Security, ending gun control and wiping out drug laws. This year’s Libertarian candidate is Gary Johnson, the former governor of New Mexico. Johnson does not seem to agree with the platform on many points, but to be honest, he’s not the world’s greatest explainer. Libertarians like the idea of a charisma-free candidate, since he’d be incapable of getting much done.

      But truly, this is a silly choice. Voting for Johnson is exactly the same as staying home, except that it involves going outdoors. Ditto for Green Party candidate Jill Stein, a doctor who appears to have a rather ambiguous attitude toward childhood vaccinations.”

      Ladies and gentlemen, the NYT.

      1. …oh and the comments.

        My eyes! The googles do nothing.

        1. Those comments, and all the thumps up they are getting, are something else

      2. Whiskey Al Smith was as sloppy on platform pedantry, but once God’s Own Prohibitionist, Dry Hope Herb Hoover had used tax and prohi laws to turn the nation into jailbirds and Hoovervilles, Al Smith’s party had no trouble winning. If Gary were to understand that asset forfeiture leads to economic collapse, he’d have an effective talking point.

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  10. I fail to see the problem with this.

    Well, yeah. If I had believed for an instant that Romney would do half of the “depraved” things the media accused him of, I might have voted for him.

    1. Ive always said that about Democratic attack ads. They make me want to vote GOP, but then I remember the D is lying in the ads.

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  12. OT: Renegade!!!

    I’ve been doing some research looking for a good summary of Hillary’s stance on the Iraq War between 2002 and 2006–when she went from being the as vocally enthusiastic about the Iraq War as George W. Bush to questioning how the occupation was prosecuted in its aftermath, and then to acknowledging that mistakes were made.

    This is a really good one titled “Hillary’s War”. It’s from the New York Times in May of 2007, when it still wasn’t clear whether the Democrats would nominate Hillary or Obama.

    The New York Times ran this story to get to the bottom of how enthusiastic Hillary was for the war when it started, what her role was in condoning the Bush Administration’s findings, chilling opposition to the war, etc. And then the story goes through the evolution of her support for the Iraq War.

    1. When I said that Hillary was a bigger neocon than Bush and that her criticism of Bush’s war efforts consisted of saying that he wasn’t going far enough, I would qualify those two statements with the following caveats.

      1) Her support for the invasion was the same as Bush before the invasion. All of the bogus claims about Saddam’s WMD and that he was collaborating with Al Qaeda (which was essential in the wake of the anthrax attack), she was the same as Bush. At one point, the article states that she was alone among Democrats in vouching for the Bush Administration’s claims on the Senate floor.

      2) Because Hillary had been so vocal in her support for the invasion, she probably felt like she couldn’t walk that back when the occupation started to sour. So she went after the Bush Administration for not going far enough during the occupation. Work it harder, make it better, Do it faster, makes us stronger, More than ever, hour after, Our work is never over. He didn’t plan for the aftermath, he should be doing more, more, more . . .

      Right up until the Democrat grass roots came out big against the War and Obama became a real force because he’d made statements against the war when it began.

      Anyway, when I said Hillary was a bigger neocon than Bush and criticized for not going far enough in Iraq, this is what I was talking about.

      1. Short Version:

        Hillary’s Position = Poll

      2. I enjoy the analysis Ken. Bonus points for quoting Daft Punk.

        1. Well, I told (((Renegade))) I’d find a link.

          Hope he sees it.

          I’m not a flake.

          1. I did, and thank you. More after reading it.

            1. OK, after reading it, I remain convinced that she is not more neocon than Bush or neocon at all. She is just purely opportunistic and amoral. Ascribing a consistent philosophy to her (betond pure self-interest) is not meaningful. If the political winds shift toward nuking Thailand or Italy, she’ll do it without hesitation. If they shift toward appeasement of North Korea or Hamas, ditto.

              1. If we’re defining a neocon as someone who believes in projecting U.S. power through war and removing authoritarian regimes and building democracies in their wake, then Hillary Clinton is a fanatical necon.

                I’m sometimes confused with necons around here because I happen to agree that the ultimate cause of many of our security problems around the world are/were repressive regimes. Where I differ with necons on their basic strategy is an eagerness to use military power for various reasons. To way oversimplify, the desire for revolution must come from within.

                There are some other underpinnings of neoconservatism that Hillary Clinton subscribes to–the horseshit about the casus belli for the Iraq War being one example. That article spent a lot of time talking about her reading of the intelligence report and her insistence both that Saddam Hussein was actively working on nuclear and biological weapons (see anthrax) and that he was collaborating with Al Qaeda.

                1. Read sometime about Leo Strauss and the Noble Lie, but read the following quote right now:

                  “WASHINGTON (AP) ? Nearly seven in 10 Americans believe it is likely that ousted Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein was personally involved in the Sept. 11 attacks, says a poll out almost two years after the terrorists’ strike against this country.

                  Sixty-nine percent in a Washington Post poll published Saturday said they believe it is likely the Iraqi leader was personally involved in the attacks carried out by al-Qaeda. A majority of Democrats, Republicans and independents believe it’s likely Saddam was involved.


                  That story is from six months AFTER we invaded Iraq.

                  The reason Republicans believed that Saddam Hussein was personally complicit in 9/11 (and the anthrax attack) is not unrelated to the fact that George W. Bush told the American people a big fat lie.

                  The reason Democrats believed that Saddam Hussein was personally complicit in 9/11 is because Hillary Clinton–alone among Democrats–told the very same lie.

  13. Listen, as long as we put America back to work on infrastructure and factory jobs, while giving them all free college beforehand, keeping out the job/life-stealing immigrants, and making the rich pay their fair share, then I’m cool.

  14. I am very tempted to give money to Johnson, but I jinx the people I give money to. Either that, or the people are pre-jinxed and my money makes no difference.

    If Johnson makes it to the debates, I am planning on opening up my wallet big time.

    1. ^HOWEVER, If Johnson makes it to the debates, I am planning on opening up my wallet big time.

      i.e., hopefully he is not pre-jinxed and/or my money won’t jinx him.

      1. Clearly, the answer is to donate heavily to Trump and Clinton.

        1. If FedEx would accept stool samples for delivery, I would donate a lot to Trump and Clinton.

    2. They’re holding another donation day on the 15th, asking for 15 bucks.

    3. Just give the money to the Libertarian Party, and we’ll hold on to it for you until the debates.

  15. Johnson should get on the “Obama founded ISIS” bandwagon! It is working so well for trump!

    1. It really isn’t as ridiculous as it sounds. His administration DID support ISIS in its early days, and his administration DID let al-Baghdadi free from prison.

      Trump probably pointed those things out, I’m not sure, but it wouldn’t matter because our MSM will run with the soundbite just like they did with the 2nd Amendment thing, because they are the proven propaganda wing of the DNC (thanks Julian).

  16. One thing I noticed (I am sure many other people noticed as well),

    In all cases, the percentage of GJ + JS (in 4-way) is greater than the “Neither” (in 2-way).

    So why do they still bother with only two-way polls??

    1. You may have answered your own question.

  17. With regard to Johnson’s compulsory nazi cakes, and Weld’s gun-control and social spending:

    This isn’t “pragmatically yielding ground by abandoning non-viable positions,” or whatever phraseology you want to use.

    For one thing, they actually believe in compulsory cakes, gun control and social spending – they’re not simply bowing to voter preferences in acknowledgement of political reality.

    For another thing, as a matter of political reality, free association rights, gun rights and taxpayer rights are perfectly defensible positions in these situations. There is lots of mainstream, moderate support for free association, gun rights, and social-spending restraint. Even Republicans sometimes take these positions. Johnson/Weld are surrendering perfectly defensible ground.

    1. Johnson hasn’t adopted Weld’s position on gun control or social spending, so how is he ceding that ground?

      And while I’m not a fan of Weld, if you’re going to talk about political reality in the context of his time as governor, then you have to talk about the political reality of Massachusetts, not the country as a whole. I doubt the average governor of Massachusetts gets an A or B rating from the Cato Institute on their fiscal record. At he’s at least apparently renounced the position he had on gun control in the 90s. I’m still not happy with the pick, and I wouldn’t vote for him if he was the top of the ticket, but he’s still better than the vast majority of candidate the big 2 parties put up, especially at the presidential or VP level.

      1. I think if I shared more of your premises I might go for Johnson too.

        I’m not trying to tell left-libertarians how to vote.

        I’m suggesting that, to someone who *isn’t* a left-libertarian, there are some defects in the ticket.

        And I emphasize the ticket because Johnson went all out to get Weld nominated.

        1. That’s fair, I’m not saying you have to vote for GJ, I’m just saying it’s absurd to argue that Clinton or Trump are more libertarian.

          This is an aside, but nobody on this board uses the term left-libertarian correctly. It generally gets used to mean people who have views somewhat or mostly aligning with the left on social issues (particularly abortion, gay marriage, immigration, etc.) and/or are purists on economic issues, but that isn’t at all what the term actually means.

          The vast majority of people called that here are, at most, the left part among right-libertarians

          Again, not happy with the Weld pick, but Johnson went all in on trying to cast himself as the reasonable option for voters unhappy with both sides rather than strictly appealing to the base, and picking a former governor who could appeal to centrists and disaffected moderate Republicans was part of that strategy. From a pragmatic, strategic POV trying to maximize the LP vote this year, I think it makes sense. I still would have liked him to go about it another way. But from within that group of people (Republicans with a reputation for being moderate and having experience governing) I’m unaware of anyone more libertarian than Weld, so it could have been worse. Bob Barr actually got the presidential nomination in 08. It’s not like this is unprecedented or will forever doom the LP more than that did.

          1. I suppose by left-libertarian I meant someone who’s for state-recognized gay marriage, who considers an anti-porn plank to be a deal-breaker for a candidate (when an compulsory cake plank *isn’t* a deal-breaker), etc.

            1. Oh, and when I say “for state-recognized gay marriage,” I include people who support state-recognize gay marriage but who would have preferred that marriage be “deregulated.”

          2. The Wikipedia is heavily infested with communist ideologues.

      2. From the electability standpoint of your average Kim Kardashian TV show viewer, Weld has a better telegenic presence on stage than Johnson.

        I think they make a good team together. Good governing experience, and Weld complements Johnson. He comes across as more circumspect and politically aware and tactful, whereas Johnson comes across as your average private sector entrepreneur who just wants to get stuff done.

  18. As noted in the Birnbaum article, the battleground states for Clinton/Trump are not the battleground states for Clinton/Trump/Johnson. It would be much more interesting if Reason could provide a recap of the states Johnson’s campaign manager say are the battlegrounds:
    Utah, Wyoming, Idaho, Montana, Alaska and the Dakotas, New Mexico, Colorado, Nevada, New Hampshire, Vermont, Maine and Oregon

    1. According to RCP, he was at 16% in UT, and 15% in CO.

  19. GJ should just release his tax return now whiling telling people that the race is now between him and HC.

      1. Do something that would seriously get the media’s attention (with the potential of ticking DT off) can’t really hurt.

        The claim would be a little outrageous at this stage, but only a little.

    1. I would definitely laugh at that. 😀

  20. A vote for Trump is a vote for Clinton/a wasted vote.

  21. Anna . I agree that James `s storry is really great… last thursday I got a top of the range Mitsubishi Evo after bringing in $4828 this last 5 weeks and just over ten grand last-munth . no-doubt about it, this really is the best work I’ve ever had . I began this four months/ago and straight away started to bring in at least $87, per-hour

  22. Gary Johnson….isn’t he the liberal who mostly agrees with Bernie Sanders and picked the gun-control retard Bill Weld as his running mate?…..ven-worse/

    This is the first presidential election in my life (I’m 55 years old) in which I (and probably a significant number of others) desperately want to vote for a 3rd party candidate, but the Libertarian party has managed to completely fuck up the opportunity to capitalize on it.

    1. So go ahead and vote for nationalsocialist women-bullier prohibitionists again for the top spot. You have four such parties to choose from, or you can write in the Islamic State. Down-ballot you will find a lot of genuine LP candidates much better versed and equipped to turn spoiler votes into tax cuts–or even get elected.

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