Bill Weld

Libertarians Denounce Bill Weld

VP nominee receives outpouring of criticism after "vouching for Mrs. Clinton" and disagreeing with the L.P. on The Rachel Maddow Show.


Even before William Weld told Rachel Maddow's MSNBC audience last night that "I'm here vouching for Mrs. Clinton," Fox Business Network host and Reason contributor Kennedy, who had raised some eyebrows a month ago when she grilled Weld about his campaign behavior and motivations, gave Libertarian presidential nominee Gary Johnson the what-for about his running mate:

"Please keep Bill Weld away from the Libertarian Party," she pleaded with an awkwardly silent Johnson at the end of the interview (which you can view in full at this link). Libertarians of both the capital-L and small-l variety have treated Weld with suspicion ever since (and in fact a decade before) he converted to the party's cause two weeks before this May's nominating convention, at which the former Massachusetts squeaked by in a second ballot by the narrowest of margins on the bitterly divided convention floor. Five months of is he/is he not supporting Hillary Clinton later, many of those ideologically disposed to root for the Libertarian ticket have clearly had enough. Though it's obviously anecdotal, I have never seen libertarian Twitter so nearly unanimous on a close-to-home political issue.

Libertarian Party Chair Nicholas Sarwark, doubtless less than pleased that his VP candidate was giving MSNBC testimonials to the competition and criticizing his own campaign one week before Election Day, sent out this subtweet last night:

Sarwark's Twitter feed is filled with RTs of stuff like this:

Meanwhile, L.P. presidential runner-up Austin Petersen, the party's presumptive (if premature) 2020 front-runner, and the only top-four finisher to endorse the Johnson/Weld ticket, tweeted out that the campaign is "a complete trainwreck."

I said "nearly unanimous" above; there are some libertarians out there defending Weld today, including Josh Guckert at The Libertarian Republic and a handful of people on Twitter. And I would certainly add to the conversation the suggestion that a Weldless L.P. ticket may never have gotten anywhere near the amount of media interest and poll support without such an Acela corridor-approved wingman.

But I think this widespread in-house revulsion at Weld's actions speaks to something positive, or at least flags an inflection point in Libertarian politics. Fact is, for at least four years now, the L.P. has been the third party in the United States. Even after his recent tumbling in the polls, Johnson is pulling more than double the support of the Green Party's Jill Stein, just as he did in 2012. He is currently projected by FiveThirtyEight to receive 4.7 percent of the national vote, which would more than quadruple the L.P.'s previous record. And the party is beating the Greens like a gong on the state and local level.

Which is to say, there's an argument to be made that Libertarian politics has grown much bigger than any fleeting cult of personality, a la Ross Perot and the Reform Party, and there's a growing sentiment that maybe there's enough homegrown talent, fully fluent in libertarianese, to preclude the need for credibility-grabs from the Basket of Normals. Eight years ago the L.P. was desperate enough for mainstream acceptance that it rode a former Republican congressman and the political-huckster author of such books as Millionaire Republican to a desultory fourth-place finish and 0.4 percent of the vote. Eight years later the party will get around 10 times that total, while rebelling against its own far more impressive veep nominee. It's a mug's game to predict the political future more than a few hours ahead these days, but I imagine that in 2020 the nominees for America's leading third party will not need the word "former" to describe their politics.

NEXT: 3 Cheers for Gary Johnson's Supreme Court Short List

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  1. Yes we did.

    1. Weld’s wrong. Dead wrong. Unbelievably, stupidly wrong. Hillary is a person of low moral character and lies constantly because that’s the formula Clintons employ when they’re caught doing something wrong.

      That said, he’s not saying what people seem to think he is (i.e. “Vote for Hillary”). He’s saying that she’s his friend and he doesn’t consider attacks against the credibility of his friends to be appropriate. I don’t think he set out to be anything other than the LP’s nomination. His track record is reasonable compared to the duopoly’s offerings. The fact that he’s willing to fall on his sword for a minor matter of principle (like defense of a friend) makes him sound exactly like a lot of foolish libertarians I know.

      We need 5%. It represents brand recognition, a stamp of legitimacy that we don’t currently have. All this hand-wringing and hair-splitting over purity of ideology (an impossible goal) undermines us, weakens us, and paints us as clowns and buffoons far worse than any silly thing that ever came out of the Johnson/Weld campaign.

      We tear ourselves apart more viciously than the rest, and it does not make us look like principled, honest people like we seem to think. Given how we act, we might as well cut our balls off and mail them to Hillary to keep in her purse. We might as well pull all our teeth and mail them to Trump. Straighten your spines and stop whimpering.

      1. He’s got piss poor taste in friends.

        1. I lost touch with my best friend from high school completely a year back. We’d had spotty correspondence beforehand and the last time I’d heard from him was a bizarre email about some drugs he was trying (I don’t remember what), the lack of sleep he was getting, and that it was opening his mind or something. It was rambling and incoherent.

          I found out a few months ago that the reason I lost touch was that he’d been shot to death by a cop while stabbing a woman. For all I know, I was one of the last people he reached out to and I didn’t know how to respond to him in whatever state he was in. I miss my friend and still think about him, despite the crime he was committing and the spectacularly awful way he left this world. I’d have stood up for him, vouched for his moral character, and called myself his friend up until that dreadful end. I had no way of knowing.

          What does my choice of friends say about me?

          1. That is the most non sequitur of non sequiturs.

            Your story: I had a friend who I haven’t talked to in years who did very bad things and isn’t around anymore because of it.

            Weld’s story: I’m actively defending someone indefensible and should distance myself from at all costs, but I don’t, for… reasons.

            1. No, and that isn’t even what a non sequitur is. It’s a comparison of experiences, not a philosophical argument built upon logical premises and with a clear conclusion.

              There is one logical fallacy being employed here: guilt by association.

              He should have the damned sense to distance himself from his friend politically. Human interactions are much messier than the ideal. Clinton is a mendacious weasel unfit for any public office, but that doesn’t imply that nobody should call her a friend. Maybe she doesn’t lie to her friends. I don’t know, and I wouldn’t associate with her because I’m compulsively honest and a compulsive liar is anathema to me.

              I’m not religious, yet I recognize the ancient wisdom in the statement (paraphrasing): “Why point out the mote in your brother’s eye while ignoring the plank in your own?” If we all cut off ties to everyone we knew who was imperfect, we’d have no ties because we’re all imperfect. I’ve done things which shame me. I’ve said things I wish I could take back. I was apparently a terrible friend to someone who may have needed me. Yet I realize that all that makes me feel unworthy can be found in every other person too and maybe recognizing that is what makes me worthy of some friendships after all.

              1. Or to put it another way: Why ignore the beam in your brother’s eye just because you’ve a mote in your own?

                Sure, we’re probably all of us imperfect, but some of us are a hell of a lot more imperfect than others. If the more imperfect is treated as well or better as the less imperfect, then an injustice has been committed.

          2. Zero Sum Game! More like Zero Sum Brain. Holy shiite

            It says you need lessons on analogies and the ability to react to friends in crisis.

            1. Have you never had a friend who you believed in, even if everyone else told you they were bad news?

              He’s got a huge character flaw, no doubt about it. He put it on display for the world, to his own folly. I think he’s being a chivalrous moron and all for someone who doesn’t need or deserve it.

              Perhaps I share that quality. I think that some of you are being capricious and reading into what he said whatever it is that you want to. People did the same thing to Rand Paul for what he said about the Civil Rights Act. I know what he actually was trying to communicate, and that is radically different from what it was spun into.

              As for your last comment, I still feel bad about not possibly recognizing warning signs. I don’t know what I could, or should have done or even if I had a sliver of a chance of helping. For all I know, I could simply have made things worse by trying to step in. It honestly seemed like it was analogous to drunk dialing where a friend experimenting with strange drugs wrote me a weird-as-hell email and would return to normal once he’d slept it off. Should I have called the police on him hundreds of miles away for a “wellness check?” Fuck that. I accept the outcome rather than ever do something like that to a person I call a friend.

              1. After your friend stabbed the lady, did you vouch for his character and integrity?

              2. “Have you never had a friend who you believed in, even if everyone else told you they were bad news?”

                Had a few girlfriends like that, and without exception I ended up wishing I had listened to everyone else.

          3. Your friend is, unfortunately, dead and can do no more harm to others or himself. Hillary is very much alive with the potential to do untold damage to Americans as well as the Constitution. I’m sorry for your friend and admire your loyalty to him but the situations are completely different.

          4. I am not sure it says anything. There is nothing
            wrong with being friends with someone who has taken some wrong turns in life as long as it does not put you into denial that they have made wrong turns, which is where Weld seems to have put himself.

      2. That’s why I don’t regret my vote for Gary. It helps the LP, and it’s not like they’re going to win anyway. I think they’ll learn from this mistake.

        1. I think they’ll learn from this mistake.

          Yes, because the things you incentivize become more rare over time.

          1. It’s ok. It’ll be different next time. Where have I heard that before?

            1. Even if Weld is the Brutus to Johnson’s Caesar, do we still have any reason to doubt that Johnson does want to drastically reduce the size of the federal government? He used the veto pen as governor with aplomb, possibly even glee, and it was effective.

              Head and shoulders above what the duopoly vomited up.

              The LP could have done far worse by libertarians in general.

              1. Too bad he’ll never get to, ahem, Weld that pen and phone.

                And yes, I doubt him. He’s compromised enough; using Ken’s Walls of Texts’ logic that litter every post WRT GayJay and The Gelded One, if GayJay had went the extra mile and adopted ALL of Shrill-Bot’s platform, why those votes would be just POURING in without any TEAM RED ickiness.

                Otherwise, your argument for him, regardless of what he and/or Gelded Weld says or does, is in the same ballpark as blind TEAM devotion, and your wall of rationalisations up there for Weld reduce to the same rationale Troomp spewed about being able to, “Shoot someone on Fifth Ave. and they still will vote for me.”

                1. Otherwise, your argument for him, regardless of what he and/or Gelded Weld says or does, is in the same ballpark as blind TEAM devotion

                  Not at all. Voting for a party to have a much better chance in 2020 while knowing that the candidate you voted for isn’t going to win or even come close is strategically viable. We don’t know who’s going to run in 2020, but it isn’t going to be Johnson. This is his last run. Weld spent all his political capital on something stupid that he’ll never live down. Virtually guaranteed, no matter who the candidate is going to be some of us are going to find him/her impure, tainted, unworthy. I’ve seen it every fucking election cycle and it’s getting old. We let teams red and blue stack up the corpses, raid our pocket books, throw people into prison for lifetimes over smoking a fucking plant, and our candidate would cut all of that back and more, and we turn up our noses at him FOR WHAT? Because a powerless mostly-figurehead VP said something nice about a political opponent?

                  When the LP candidate actually stands a real chance at being elected after having been given a fairer shot at it we can have this purity discussion because it will be more meaningful.

                  Why? We lay down in front of the shogun of purity and loudly proclaim “we are unworthy and dishonored” and commit seppuku, leaving the duopoly to cannibalize us ravenously. It’s just so decidedly libertarian to act completely incongruously to our own interests.

                  1. ^
                    ^ !!!

              2. I think Johnson is reasonably solid. I have policy disagreements with him, but they are mostly principled in nature. I think he would do his best to reduce the size of government (though he will need to do more than simply “veto with aplomb” to get the job done in Washington, given the Democrats’ penchant for crying about widows and orphans every time somebody doesn’t get a welfare check).

                In contrast, Weld just makes me want to puke. He’s just not a libertarian (not even libertarian-ish). He’s the very definition of “the problem.”

                1. Yup. And if GJ was elected AND there was a tie in the Senate Welds opinion would matter. Neither of those things will happen, so Weld is really meaningless. His appearance on Maddow is a disaster and its a good reason for the LP to ensure he is never nominated for another position, but its not a good reason to vote againdt the LP.

              3. Weld isn’t Brutus because Brutus’ betrayal was unexpected (And his was Noble) I said Weld was infiltrator on May 29th as did many others.

          2. > “Yes, because the things you incentivize become more rare over time.”

            Weld is finished in the LP. How many votes GJ gets wont have any impact on that.

        2. Gary is a PC liberal fool. He yelled at a journalist for saying “illegal immigrant” instead of “undocumented immigrant” . When pressed on why it was wrong to say “illegal immigrant” he explained in a very superior manner that the undocumented immigrants only came here illegally because there was no way for them to come legally . I imagine his insistence on choosing the trust fund RINO dufus as his running mate is just as sensible.

      3. The problem is getting to that 5% (which should have always been the goal for everyone other than the candidates themselves) requires a)candidates to keep the focus on L after Labor Day when the natural tendency is for negative D/R ads to fearmonger independents into ‘returning’ to D/R and b)activists to get into their own neighborhoods (even if only a yard sign) to show that L’s actually exist in the real world and so are an option.

        And Weld has IMO deliberately undermined that. He has been reluctant at best re L – making it very difficult for activists to even commit to yard sign. He has been derelict in picking up the areas that are Johnson’s weaknesses and (supposedly) Weld’s strength – so much for a ‘joint’ presidency. I lived in MA when he was Gov – and respected what he did then and who he was – and thought there was some real pragmatic potential with that choice despite serious squishiness. But I have lost all respect for Weld. He is scum.

        I’m still voting L cuz the 5% is too important. But I now hope Trump wins – cuz the ‘establishment’ needs some serious destruction. If Weld is the L-friendly ‘establishment’ – who needs enemies? And I will personally redouble my own focus on getting LP well-organized locally – so that we don’t have to depend on prez candidates selling their BS and hope.

        1. Hear, hear!

    2. I intend to vote for the least Statist ticket on Nov. 8th.
      Thanks to Mr Weld, I now know I will be voting for the Trump ticket.

  2. Johnson would do well to issue a mea culpa and drop Weld if it can be done at this point. I’d hold my nose and vote for him but, as it stands, a vote for Johnson is a vote for Weld.

    1. Oh please. GayJay has no major problems with what this piece of crap Geld is saying or doing.

      As stupid as he is, he’s smart enough to know he’s not winning, and on the inside he feels the same way Geld does.

      1. You may be right, Weld might be speaking with GJ’s approval which would be an enormous betrayal. His repudiating Weld would show this to not be the case but I’m not holding my breath.

        1. Highly doubt it considering Gary’s latest talking point is how Hillary may be impeached. Very clearly on a different page than Weld.

          1. The odds of Shrill-Bot getting impeached are roughly the same as Obumbles getting impeached. If GayJay seriously thinks otherwise, then he has the political skills of a gym sock.

      2. It was never about winning. When Johnson accepted the nomination everyone knew it wasn’t about winning, but about building momentum and maintaining ballot access. Only after Trump imploded did he actually have a chance, and he wasn’t up to pressing his advantage.

      3. Does he feel on the inside like Block Insane Yomomma the secret Kenyan does?

    2. A vote for Clinton is a vote for Weld. A vote for Johnson is a vote for the 2020 LP nominee.

      1. Johnson needs to yank his dog’s leash very forcefully and publicly or it’s implied agreement in my view.

        1. The agreement isn’t implied; it’s explicit.

          Bill Weld: I vouch for my old friend, Hillary, with whom I have a life long bond.

          Gary Johnson: She’s a wonderful public servant.

          1. Gary has long since amended that statement to say she’s a beholden crony capitalist.

            1. amended that statement

              How many statements has he amended now? 50? 100? For a LP candidate, he sure likes to spout statist and otherwise ridiculous nonsense on first blush, only to “amend” away to a more libertarian position once his base starts pitching a fit.

              1. This LP ticket’s candidates are indefensible. I’m not voting for them… by voting “for them”. Yes, I am Voting for The Party. Is that bad, given the alternatives? I feel the LP has too much potential for the good of this country, despite (or especially because of) its roiling, conflicted irritated bowels. And despite its current figureheads.

                Meh, Johnson. (The rally cry)


          2. Exactly in that simple statement Weld sold out the entire Libertarian movement. How can anyone with true libertarian principles have a life long bond with the definition of progressive vileness.

      2. ^ indeed. The point is to reach 5% and get funding and ballot access.

        Not to ‘signal’ this or that. If you are believe in the efficacy of electoral politics and are unhappy with the LP and its choice this year, get involved in the party to actually let them know that and to prepare for a better 2020 ticket.

        1. Yes. There must be millions of D and R voters who are queasy about the candidates they’re stuck with this year, yet they’re going to vote for them.

          1. To be clear, I’m not voting, because I don’t think Johnson should be president (I wholeheartedly agree with tarran’s explanation below) and because of the moral problems I have with voting. But if you believe in voting, are committed to casting a ballot over the next week, and otherwise support the mission of the LP… the choice seems clear to me.

            If you go to the polls as a symbolic gesture of expressing your beliefs, then absolutely ‘vote your conscience’ and only vote for a candidate you want to see in the White House. Don’t vote Johnson if he’s not your guy. I think that exercise is weird, but whatever, it’s your time. It’s when people start talking about ‘strategy’ and ‘signaling’ that I think they wander off the reservation.

          2. The D and R registered voters ALWAYS vote D or R. Doesn’t matter whether the candidate is their first choice or they hate them. They always go home. And the entire purpose/function of ‘negative campaigning’ (which was totally predictable this year given the dislike for Trump/Clinton) is to fearmonger registered independents into choosing to vote against one of the majors by voting for the other.

            L’s (and any third party) have to appeal ONLY to independents and they have to do so as a positive choice for them rather than a fearmongered choice. L’s kind of failed at that this year.

            1. Actually I’ve voted Libertarian in the last two presidential elections and I fully planned to do so in this one. Until Bill Weld started running his mouth about gun control and what a great friend Hillary Clinton was and Gary Johnson didn’t tell him to shut the fuck up and get on message (because Johnson apparently didn’t give a damn whether libertarians or anti-Trump conservatives came to vote for him).

              If the Libertarian Party wants us to vote for them on principle, maybe they should do a better job of pushing principled candidates. In the meantime, I’d rather vote for the guy who has a shot at removing the Clintons from power.

        2. I’d rather whine on the internet.

          1. We should all make this our sig line.

            1. Or get it tattooed on our foreheads.

              1. Or welded on our Johnson?

        3. If you are believe in the efficacy of electoral politics …, get involved in the [LP] to actually let them … prepare for a better 2020 ticket.


          1. It’s an important If.

            (and one I went back to add before posting, hence that hanging “are”)

        4. I’ll let them know with my vote. Judging from these comments, so will a lot of others.

        5. And maintaining that 5% may be difficult in light of fear of Trump and the candidacy of McMullin.

          They would have done better nominating McAffee – while unelectable, at least he wouldn’t have gone all squishy and might have maintained 5% by attracting the truly disaffected, non-stein voters.

          1. McAfee wouldn’t have gotten 0.5%. Neither would Peterson

          2. This. McAfee would have done better than people think, much better AND he knew he wasn’t going to win. He was going to BUILD the party from the ground up. His message was beautiful and he was going to run against the system he would have maintained a sizable percentage of the protest vote and people who otherwise wouldn’t vote at all. People call him crazy but he is the sanest of them all.

        6. If the ticket is polling under 5%, it will end up with around 1% when voters actually get into the booth and wasted vote syndrome kicks in.

          That’s reality not the wishful thinking this article is based on.

      3. Wait, I thought a vote for Trump was a vote for Putin and a vote for Johnson was a vote for Clinton and a vote for Bernie was a vote for SMoD. Who do I vote for if I want to vote for None Of The Above?

        1. A vote for None of the Above is a vote for All Of Those Bastards. It is known.

    3. Johnson’s and Weld’s incentives no longer align.

      If Gary Johnson wins a single state and neither Clinton nor Trump secures 270 or more Electoral Votes, Johnson could win but not Weld.

      The House of Representatives then chooses the President “from the persons having the highest numbers not exceeding three on the list of those voted for as President”, so Clinton, Johnson, or Trump could conceivably win in that scenario. If McMullin wins UT and Johnson wins NM and neither Clinton nor Trump wins 270 Electoral Votes, the House would choose among Clinton, McMullin, and Trump since Utah (6) has more Electoral Votes than New Mexico (5).

      On the other hand, the Senate chooses the Vice President “from the two highest numbers on the list”, which would be Kaine or Pence.

      So there is a scenario where Gary Johnson became President and have either Kaine or Pence as his Vice President.

      (This also means Clinton could win the Presidency but be faced with a Vice President Pence or Trump could win with a Vice President Kaine.)

  3. Please sic Kennedy on Weld. I bet he’s never been interrupted like that before. He had it coming!

      1. And thanks for the good article, Matt.

      2. Yeah, thanks for that. It was good to see a genuine libertarian skewer Weld on a national cable news show.

      3. Thanks for that, Matt…you’re one of the good ones left here.

  4. it was a move toward squishy moderation. is 5% still the threshold for federal recognition/funding?

    1. yes. I think some states have different thresholds based on what I’ve read from others in the commentariat

      1. Yes. As I have pointed out, in KY 2% gets every LP candidate easy ballot access for the next 4 years. No petitioning. Well, technically, it still requires 2 signatures, but even the big parties have to collect that.

        I am hoping the LP can run 100 candidates for state house in 2018 and 2020 (The Rs and Ds dont come close to that, way too many unopposed elections) and 17 for state senate those years. And a full slate for Governor/Sec of State/etc in 2019.

        1. NC’s threshold is also 2%. We require a lot of signatures (I think equivalent to 2% of the total votes cast in the last election — or something along those lines), so it would be no small deal to free up the resources that normally go toward collecting signatures.

          1. Whoa I didn’t know there were any North Carolinians in the commetariat

            1. Besides myself

  5. I hate to have to say it again. But here goes. We told you so.

    1. Do you ever hate to say anything negative? I have never seen anyone with such a severe case of chronic diaper rash.

      1. Aww, Hugh, you’re so cute. Like a fuzzy kitten.

        1. False. The cat breed Hugh most closely resembles is a Sphynx.

    2. could we have a little gusto, huh is that too much to much to ask?

      1. You drink Schlitz?

        1. yes I drink Schlitz, I drink Schlitz all the time…to quote The Tick…

  6. Weld was chosen with the hope of swaying enough mainstream Republicans to be make the ticket a viable Trump alternative and get on the debate stage. It wasn’t totally outside the realm of possibility at the time. It hasn’t panned out and Weld has shown himself to be a terrible choice. I’ll still vote LP.

    Maybe Petersen would be better off running for the House or a state-level position?

    1. Weld couldn’t persuade a hungry wolf to have a hamburger…quelle douche

    2. Maybe Petersen would be better off running for the House or a state-level position?

      Why? If he had been gotten the VP nod, would he have been any worse than Weld? At least Petersen knows media.

      What the hell has Weld delivered? Wasn’t he supposed to be the fundraiser extraordinaire? Well, (to Weld) where’s my money bitch? Respectability? He’s made the LP campaign look like a joke. When the head of the party is having to say, “Don’t pay any attention to our VP, vote for Johnson, anyway!”, it’s clear that Weld is not helping.

      1. The 2016 campaign has raised an order of magnitude more money than 2012.

        You can criticize the VP nominee on many things, but failing to deliver on promises of fundraising is not one of them.

        1. Keep polishing and burnishing that turd. You still can’t pick it up by clean end.

          1. can too, neener , neener, neener

        2. Mr. Sarwark,

          From Google, the Johnson campaign has raised about $11.4 mm (compared to $2.6 mm in 2012). 66% came from small donations, certainly not something you can credit Weld with. And, again, this is the election against Clinton and Trump.

          1. And not a dime from me, a 25-year member of the LP who even donated when Barr ran.

            (Oh, to have a candidate like Harry Browne in 2016.)

        3. Fuck You Asshole. Do the honorable thing and kill yourself.

            1. Keep fighting the good fight, Mr. Sarwark. You are a credit to the LP

            2. Keep up the good fight. The Sarwark “Defy” button from the convention is by far my favorite.

              It is beyond unfortunate that the calculated moves of our body at the convention have fallen in the what seems like the worst of ways. Whatever happens, Johnson/Weld is an upgrade from Barr/Root.

              Now if we can just get our people together for 2018 midterms.

        4. Needs one more order of magnitude of funds to compete. The news media treated him like a 5 percenter, with a few courtesy interviews and no mention in the daily horse race reporting.

          A big surge of early cash could have bought national television ads to introduce Gary Johnson to America, and inform people that they had a third choice. I heard one radio ad in California, a state where he had no chance anyway.

          The ads should have made him sound presidential: Don’t trust Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton? If only there were a third choice. This time there is — Gary Johnson, a two-term governor and successful entrepreneur who has climbed Mt. Everest and isn’t afraid to tackle America’s problems from a non-partisan perspective. Don’t waste your vote on Trump or Clinton — vote Gary Johnson for President.

          1. Show montage of Gary Johnson summiting Mt. Everest, supervising a construction project, sitting in the NM Governor’s office, etc.

            1. Don’t forget the shots of him kissing a puppy and petting a baby.

          2. $50MM was the number that I heard bandied around, and it sounded about right.

        5. McAfee for chairman or someone with a similar vision, as soon as possible.

      2. My suggestion about Petersen is rooted in his inexperience in political office. That hasn’t hurt Trump, but I don’t think Petersen is Trump or that the Trump phenomenon will be long-lived. At the House or state level he could gain experience and probably have more impact because he might actually be able to win (though even then it is a long shot).

        1. I think hed do well in the house

          1. We need some Libertarians in Congress badly.

            Especially ones who can give a good filibustering speech on why a given bill is a bad idea.

            1. John McAfee thinks similar. He tried his best with to make it happen. We need to take over state legislatures and mayoral offices and then we can groom someone for federal positions.

        2. Petersen doesn’t have his name in giant letters on buildings all over the place or have a fraction of the name recognition of Trump. A term or two in congress is exactly what he needs to build some political cred, or some kind of higher level executive experience. He talks a good game, but even Obama, who built his campaign on empty words, still had that “Senator” in front of his name.

    3. Ditto, and already voted. Even as terrible as Weld is, he’d still be better than Trump or Hillary, but there’s very little chance of LP winning and even less chance of Weld outliving Johnson.

      1. Weld is better than Trump? Really?

        Weld has just proven that his judgement is so utterly flawed that he is defending the indefensible in support of an opposing candidate a week before the election. It boggles the mind that any rational adult would do something so idiotic. he is either a DNC shill/plant or he is losing his mind. Both of which are utterly disqualifying to be a heartbeat away from the presidency.

        FFS. Weld makes Biden look downright sane.

        1. How is Weld not better than Trump? Don’t get me wrong, he sucks, but apologizing for an awful major party nominee isn’t worse than being an awful major party nominee. And Trump has no room to talk about avoiding stupid blunders. Again, this isn’t a defense of Weld, just putting in perspective how low the bar to clear is.

          1. Trump is anti establishment and Weld exemplifies it. That’s how he’s better.

            1. That’s not an actual substantive reason why Trump is better. Being anti-establishment doesn’t inherently make you better from a libertarian POV. If this election was Mitt Romney vs. Bernie Sanders, I highly doubt anyone here would be arguing that.

        2. “DNC shill plant”? What would give Hillary more voters or shed voters from the left from Johnson to Hillary – attacking Trump or attacking Hillary? I contend that Johnson and Weld would draw more voters from Hillary by attacking Trump than by attacking Hillary. If they attack Hillary, they could be perceived as “Right” and not attract disaffected Democrats, whereas if they attack Trump they be perceived as “one of us” by disaffected Democrats and more likely draw them. If they defend Hillary, they’ll be regarded as “classy” by disaffected Democrats for praising rather than attacking or for “being fair”, and they’d therefore be more likely to support Gary/Bill.

          Suppose that they wanted to support Trump and shed Gary supporters back to Trump, or not appeal to or repel disaffected Republicans. Will it repel more disaffected Republicans if Gary & Bill attack Hillary or defend her? I contend that it will repel disaffected Republicans to defend Hillary than to attack her.

          So, if one wanted to tip the election toward Trump, Bill Weld’s doing the exact right thing – defending and praising Hillary so as to repel disaffected Republicans back to Trump and draw disaffected Democrats, and by appearing “left” by attacking Trump. If one wants to draw from the Left, one has to appear Left.

    4. Maybe Petersen would be better off running for the House or a state-level position?

      I don’t know what state he lives in but that’s a good idea. Unfortunately I suspect Peterson is more interested in grandstanding and attention-seeking than actually putting work in for the cause in less prestigious roles.

    5. Maybe Gary Johnson would be better off running for Senator in New Mexico?

      1. Ron Paul people tried to get him to run in a winnable NM Senate primary in 2012 but Johnson said he was an “executive” and acted as if the world’s most important deliberative body was beneath him.

        1. We really shouldfocus on house and Senate races.

          1. House should actually be doable – but LP really does need to put ‘expand the representativeness/size of the House’ in the platform. Third parties need smaller districts to even get a campaign off the ground. A House race costs an average $1.6 million ($2 per constituent) to win – and even D/R challengers can only raise an average of $600,000. Reduce district size and you a)raise the cost of cronyism (more critters to buy), b)reduce the cost of wholesale politics and c)reintroduce retail politics as a potential bootstrapping option. Critters also should have fewer appointed staff to do the legwork – and more accountable elected critters to do the legwork. And a larger legislature relative to the size of the exec means that actual oversight may become possible again.

            So many positives to having the LP take the lead on this issue – esp since the next apportionment/expansion is due in 2020.

          2. The big issue is ballot access.

            In several states, winning 5% of the vote guarantees ballot access for the party in the next election not just for President and Vice President but also for House, Senate, state legislature, etc. A 5% win in those states would free up funds used to pay for gathering signatures to get on the ballot for actual House and Senate campaigns.

          3. Yeah, where the fuck are those free staters in New Hampshire? Maybe they should aim smaller and pick a district instead.

          4. Yes we do. McAfee for party chairman.

        2. Legislative and executive roles are very different, and I can see why an ex-Governor like Johnson might not want to get involved in legislative politics. Also, running for Senate as a Republican would have thrown a wrench into his plans to run for president on the LP ticket in 2016.

    6. Weld was chosen because he had a reputation for raising money.

      It seems, however, that the money he raised was contingent on his running as a stalking horse.

    7. A “Get the fuck off my ticket” response from GayJay would be encouraging if only to signal that he’s not the total pussy we all know him to be.

      1. Sometimes it seems that Gary equates the NAP with not being allowed to have a spine.

    8. Weld was chosen for the potential of getting some big donors and making the LP ticket credible. It didn’t happen.
      Weld is no libertarian, but if the ticket were Weld-Johnson, I’m pretty sure the polling numbers and vote totals would be a few points higher — he seems more “presidential” to people.

      Only about 2 percent of the population is really libertarian, and half of them don’t vote. If the nominee is weak (like Barr), three-quarters of them don’t vote. Getting to 5 percent requires a broader appeal. Johnson had it, but didn’t come across as well prepared or serious, and Weld endorsing Clinton didn’t help much.

      I’m still voting for Gary Johnson. He’s the best national candidate by far. Voting to express your preference of the candidates is the only vote that makes sense. People who vote to affect the outcome are delusional — one vote won’t matter, not even in Florida.

      1. “Only about 2 percent of the population is really libertarian, and half of them don’t vote”

        That is bullshit. A solid majority would identify with Libertarians if the friggin candidates the LP put up could articulate what Libertarians actually believe in.
        Johnson is the goddamn weed candidate and the friggin weed smokers have no motivation to go vote.

        The biggest issues people have with the Dems/Repubs revolve around the Libertarian ideals.
        R: Social conservatives….stay out of my business
        R: Pro-life….yeh abortion sucks, but stay the fuck out of my business
        R: Foreign policy hawks….stop stirring the friggin global pot and mind our own business
        D: gun control….2nd amendment you statist pigs
        D: out of control benefits….stop taxing me to death you statist pigs
        and so on and so on.
        Combine that into a coherent platform and bam, huge success at the polls.

        Combine those and

        1. You sound like Michael Hihn right now. If the majority of the country was libertarian, the LP wouldn’t be a fringe third party, and the two major parties would be a lot more libertarian. No LP candidate has topped 1.06% and that was in 1980 by a nominee more liberal than Johnson. No one between Clark and Johnson cleared 0.5%. At some point, you have to acknowledge that the biggest problem isn’t who is picked as the nominee.

          1. “You sound like Michael Hihn right now.”

            That is needlessly harsh.

            1. You’re right, that is harsh. But I stand by the rest of my comment.

            2. It was a low blow.

              Admittedly, I was going to say the exact same thing, though maybe more sarcastically.


    9. That’s funny. He’s persuade this libertarian to vote for Trump.

  7. Kind of spooky, all these libertarians agreeing on something. Makes the hair on my neck stand on end…
    *unsheathes machete*

    1. unsheathes wood chipper?

      1. Florida Hipster is male, so it’s a machete, not a woodchipper. Do you even euphemism, bro?

        1. well I’m a little bit literal, when someone says they unsheathed their machete, I didn’t immediately think they whipped out their dick…you may have other things on your mind however.

          1. Don’t you know the entire comment section is increasingly abstract masturbation euphemisms all the way down?

          2. I always do both simultaneously

        2. I read it as Radioactive was getting ready for Florida Hipster to insert his machete into his wood chipper.

          What? I’m the only one who got that?

  8. This is a lovely exercise in wishful thinking Mr Welch.

    My guess is that any higher vote tallies for the presidency will not be reflected in any of the down ticket races. I have yet to meet any Gary Johnson voter who wasn’t voting for him out of revulsion at Trump or Clinton. I’ve never met anyone who said to me, “I like this guy and think he’d be a great president”. Take Trump and/or Clinton out of the picture, and these new Johnson supporters will happily scurry back to voting for the Republican/Democrat they hate the least.

    There is no LP bench. There are no credible candidates. If there were, they would have bumped Johnson off long ago. They would have made credible runs for governor somewhere.

    Three years from now, only people with nothing better to do but devote years of their lives to quixotic doomed campaigns will be running for the presidency. And they will be no more credible than this year’s batch of candidates.

    If you are right, when the votes are tallied, the LP will do better accross the board.

    If I am right, when the votes are tallied, the LP candidates for congress, governorships, etc. will be hovering at 1%.

    1. Sometimes it takes an ice breaker.

      I traveled a lot in Japan by bus some time ago. Inevitably some student wouldn’t eventually get up the nerve to ask if I would mind helping them practice English, we’d talk for a minute or two on the weather, why I was there, how I liked it, and once that first conversation was over, there’d practically be a line of students waiting their turn.

      There’s a real benefit to people voting LP this time, even if not for real libertarians. There are, by all accounts, plenty of voters who say they would vote LP “but they don’t want to throw their vote away”. This is exposure that was unobtainable before. Now the next LP candidates don’t have to be temporary converts, and a lot of voters have been exposed to the LP and lived to tell the tale.

      Priceless, as they say.

      1. Once the LP nominates its usual batch of losers/retread Republicans, these voters whose LP cherry is now popped will still vote for the credible RP or DP candidate they fear the least.

        They will behave as they have in the past because literally none of the incentives have changed.

        1. RP? I know what DP stands for but I’m not familiar with the RP. Are you talking about anal? You’re talking about anal, aren’t you.

          1. RP = Republican Party
            DP = Democratic Party
            LP = Libertarian Party


          2. RP = Rape Party
            DP = Donkey Punch
            LP = Light Petting


        2. The socialists realized this decades ago and took over team blue. But principled libertarians shouldn’t do the same with team red because that would be compromising their purity. That’s why it’s ok to compromise themselves with johnson because it isn’t compromising. Dizzy? Me too.

          1. What on earth makes you think there are enough libertarians in the country to take over the Republican party? Consistent LP voters are less than 1% of the electorate. That is nowhere near enough to win a Republican primary.

            1. As Suell astutely points out below, if an active party has been around for 40 years or so, and has yet to have any major LPers in either the House or the Senate (the only declared Independents caucus with TEAM BLUE), one might call into question of the efficacy methods employed to get the message out, the veracity of the message itself, and the RoR on 40 years worth of investment.

              The Pauls, Amashes, Lees, Massies (who publicly announced voting Troomp, and I don’t think he’s recanted that), and even Cruzes and Jordans of the world, comprise the best chance to make a difference. There is a Freedom Caucus in the House – If GayJay can water down, vacillate, compromise, and moderate his message for the sake of BernieBros and BernieBabes who have now disappeared, why can’t he do the same in the direction of TEAM RED and the Freedom Caucus?

              The best successes have been them running under the banner of the (R)s.

              1. I’m not saying I’m against libertarians running as Republicans if they can get elected. I’m saying that’s it absurd to think that if only the 0.5% of the country that consistently votes LP (many of whom probably do/would vote for libertarian-leaning Republicans like the Pauls or Amash) would get on board with that, then the strategy would have success. Even if every libertarian in the country decided to try to infiltrate the GOP today, they would be outnumbered by the nationalists, social conservatives, establishment types, etc. Their candidates might win the occasional congressional race, but there’s no way they’d win a presidential primary or take control of the party.

                And Cruz is a snake who is only libertarian when convenient. He does not deserved to be named alongside the Pauls, Amash, etc.

                1. And Cruz is a snake who is only libertarian when convenient.

                  Yet Weld gets a pass. Free and clear. I have yet to hear Cruz openly endorse Shrill-Bot.

                  Even if every libertarian in the country decided to try to infiltrate the GOP today, they would be outnumbered by the nationalists, social conservatives, establishment types, etc.

                  Unfortunately, Team Red TEAM BLUE is still all in on overseas military intervention, the drug war, and enforced biblical SJW morality. They call that freedom?

                  Yet also outnumbered by the Venn diagram overlaps and corollaries in TEAM BLUE as well; GayJay had no problems compromising for them and active courting BernieBros and BernieBabes. Why does the ratchet go only one way?

                  1. “Yet Weld gets a pass. Free and clear. I have yet to hear Cruz openly endorse Shrill-Bot.”

                    When did I say Weld gets a pass? I wouldn’t cite Weld as a libertarian electoral success. I wouldn’t vote for him if he was top of the ticket, and I don’t blame people who won’t vote for Johnson cause of him, unless they vote for Trump instead. And Cruz has endorsed Trump, so I’m not sure why exactly he’s getting bonus points for that. And that’s pretty pathetic, because even setting aside Trump’s positions and all his other baggage, Trump insinuated that Cruz’s father helped kill JFK, insulted his wife’s looks, called Cruz “Lying Ted” repeatedly, and questioned his citizenship/right to be president. Absolutely pathetic that Cruz endorsed him after all that.

                    1. Absolutely pathetic that Cruz endorsed him after all that.

                      Cruz kept his word, just like Massie. Like Austin Petersen did to GayJay, except when the LP Veep nom openly endorses the TEAM BLUE opponent. I appreciate someone who keeps their word, even when it’s not popular.

                      Trump insinuated that Cruz’s father helped kill JFK, insulted his wife’s looks, called Cruz “Lying Ted” repeatedly, and questioned his citizenship/right to be president

                      For someone who just ran down Cruz himself, I’m not sure why you would suddenly defend him. What Troomp has said (which is detestable – I was Cruz supporter) pales in significance to what Shrill-Bot has actually DONE. Weld has endorsed her.

                      Troomp, at least in the primaries, wanted to win. And he was remarkably and brutally effective at it. Perhaps if GayJay had half the vim and vigour of some blowhard political neophyte who understands very well how to sell and market (like, say, MacAfee), a vital aspect of running a business, he might be doing so much better in the polls and we wouldn’t be having the discussion about The Gelded One.

                    2. “Cruz kept his word, just like Massie.”

                      Honoring a stupid pledge doesn’t make it much better. Going back on that is nowhere near as bad as endorsing someone like Trump. Especially when Cruz had ample grounds to defend going back on it, given the new information that had arisen in the timeframe (such as the examples I mentioned). Also, Cruz endorsing Trump was 100% popular with his constituency (Republicans, specifically Texan Republicans). Seeing as how he got attacked for not endorsing at the convention, in all likelihood he only ended up doing it for damage control.

                      “For someone who just ran down Cruz himself, I’m not sure why you would suddenly defend him. What Troomp has said (which is detestable – I was Cruz supporter) pales in significance to what Shrill-Bot has actually DONE. Weld has endorsed her.”

                      I don’t like Cruz, but that doesn’t mean I think his dad helped kill JFK, that he’s ineligible to be president, or that it’s fair and decent to attack his wife’s looks. I think he’s a liar, but I’m assuming Cruz doesn’t like being called that – and I was talking about things from his perspective after all. And if you want to go the “Trump has just said things, Hillary has actually done things” route, that is literally only because Trump has never held political office. I don’t think he gets bonus points for only promising to do terrible things, since that’s all we have to judge him by (that and his business/personal life, which doesn’t inspire much confidence either)

                  2. “GayJay had no problems compromising for them and active courting BernieBros and BernieBabes. Why does the ratchet go only one way?”

                    I don’t really get this response in this context. We are talking about infiltrating the Republican Party. Hence why the other person’s comment was about the GOP. I’ve never even seen anyone try to argue about infiltrating the Democratic Party. You’re also once again exaggerating the extent to which Johnson relied on appealing to BernieBros. He made appeals to a lot of different segments of the electorate who don’t like Trump or Clinton. I’m not arguing he couldn’t have gone about it better, but he did try to appeal to Republican-leaning constituencies. Hell, Weld himself was such an attempt, just with the moderate wing rather than the conservative wing of the party, as they were the ones most dissatisfied with Trump. Johnson’s positions on, among other things, drugs (hold off on fully legalizing hard drugs) and abortion (pro-choice, but let the states decide) are areas where one could easily argue he’s compromising to the right.

                    1. Johnson tried appealing to gop constituencies?? Hahahahahahaha. Oh, you were serious. Then again I saw a lot of not giving is taking in your logic.

                      The progs own the democratic party. Wyden is the closest thing they have to a libertarian. Remind me how he voted on obamacare. That’s your answer to infilitrating them.

                    2. “Johnson tried appealing to gop constituencies?? Hahahahahahaha. Oh, you were serious. Then again I saw a lot of not giving is taking in your logic.”

                      The examples I cited are as much or more substantive than the accusations he’s pandering to leftists. Which as far as I can tell have been about wedding cakes more than anything else.

                      “The progs own the democratic party. Wyden is the closest thing they have to a libertarian. Remind me how he voted on obamacare. That’s your answer to infilitrating them.”

                      I didn’t argue for infiltrating the democratic party. Can you read? I was pointing out that in the context of this discussion about infiltrating the GOP, there was no reason for Groovus to assume the other person was arguing that we should infiltrate the Democrats instead.

                    3. Wait, you’re claiming that not wanting to legalize hard drugs is purely an appeal to gop voters? You’re poll boy. What does pew have to say? What’s that, lassie? Only about 10% of americans favor legalizing hard drugs? Yes, that was a very string point you failed to make.

                      Groovus was pointing out that gay jay was fine compromising to recruit berntards and did a piss poor job recruiting from a ripe crop of disaffected conservatarians. You were the one who turned that into an implication of infilitrating team blue. Your supposed concrete observations are what saved pence’s life on a NY runway.

                    4. “Wait, you’re claiming that not wanting to legalize hard drugs is purely an appeal to gop voters?”

                      No, but within the left-right paradigm of American politics, legalizing hard drugs is generally perceived as a left position and you’d find more support for that policy there than among non-libertarians on the right. Anti-discrimination laws aren’t just supported by leftists, you can find plenty of support for that among the center and center-right, but that doesn’t stop you or everyone else from considering that to be pandering to the left.

                      “Groovus was pointing out that gay jay was fine compromising to recruit berntards and did a piss poor job recruiting from a ripe crop of disaffected conservatarians.”

                      Johnson’s position on that wasn’t anything new, I don’t see where he changed to recruit them. I also think you and everyone else pushing this argument is drastically overestimating the number of “disaffected conservatarians” in the country. Trump has most of the right behind him, and a lot of the ones who aren’t are establishment-types. And subtract out the people who were always going to get in line because he’s the GOP nominee and can win, and the SoCons who aren’t remotely conservatarian, and how many people are you left with? If this group was so big and easy for the LP nominee to capture, you’d think they’d have more success doing it the past 40 years.

                    5. “Groovus was pointing out that gay jay was fine compromising to recruit berntards and did a piss poor job recruiting from a ripe crop of disaffected conservatarians. You were the one who turned that into an implication of infilitrating team blue.”

                      Can you fucking read? Groovus directly quoted SadlyShakingHead’s comment about the Republicans and then made it about the Democrats. Since SSH’s comments were directly in response to the discussion about infiltrating the Republican Party, as this entire subthread was, why wouldn’t I interpret his comment that way?

                    6. Weld himself was such an attempt

                      Weld is, for all intents and purposes, TEAM BLUE at heart. A goodly number of TEAM REDster are, actually. The argument that there is little substantive difference b’twixt the two is legion here.

                      Johnson’s positions on, among other things, drugs (hold off on fully legalizing hard drugs) and abortion (pro-choice, but let the states decide) are areas where one could easily argue he’s compromising to the right.

                      Yes, and he’s compromising with TEAM BLUE on drugs every bit as much, if not more. They like them some Drug War too. Abortion is owned by the Feds, lock, stock, and barrel – courts are saying that MedicAid has to pay for them, even though The States run their own MedicAid systems. That was a rhetorical fig leaf.

                      As far as “cakes” goes, he signed his NM’s own version of a Religious Restoration/Freedom bill. The same type that Bil Clinton championed. Which upholds the right of business owners to do business with whomever they wish, just like sex workers (who GayJay had problems discussing at a Town Hall) have the right to select any client they wish to do business with, regardless of reason.

                      GayJay said, “You’ll never hear me mention God,” yet he sets up HQ in UT (Why not NM?) and Eggin’ McMuffin is kicking his ass out 3rd Partying GayJay. Not good marketing for a Mormon dominated state Where are the BernBots now?

                    7. “Weld is, for all intents and purposes, TEAM BLUE at heart. A goodly number of TEAM REDster are, actually. The argument that there is little substantive difference b’twixt the two is legion here.”

                      Yeah, there are lot of similarities between a lot of the establishment-types in both parties. But that doesn’t change the fact that there are a still a lot of voters in each camp that consistently vote for one party or the other. And a lot of those Republicans were very unhappy with Trump this cycle. Or are the only Republicans that count SoCons and whoever else forms the rest of the GOP coalition?

                      Regarding abortion – yeah, maybe it was just rhetoric, but so was a lot of the stuff Johnson gets shit for from the right. It’s still something that pro-choice people on the left will criticize him for.

                2. Holy shit are you thick. Only the little voices in your head are claiming that libertarians could take over the gop tomorrow. But you could observe the fact that the socialists have basically co-opted one of the major parties after years of effort without having a majority today. No doubt this will trigger your pedant reflex claiming that they’re not true socialists…

                  1. “But you could observe the fact that the socialists have basically co-opted one of the major parties after years of effort without having a majority today. No doubt this will trigger your pedant reflex claiming that they’re not true socialists…”

                    Under the definition of socialist that you seem to be using, they may not be a majority (though that’s debatable – and if you’re using a loose definition of the term, the cutoff is arbitrary), but they’re definitely a large portion of the electorate. At least 25%, and probably more. Libertarians are nowhere near that big a portion of the electorate. Especially when you consider that Johnson is viewed as insufficiently libertarian to a large portion of libertarians, despite being more libertarian than 90+% of the country. It’s not like there aren’t other, much larger groups that want to control the GOP. I’m not against attempts to take it over, I’m just being realistic in putting the odds very low, especially for the foreseeable future. And even if it did succeed as much as the “socialist” takeover of the Democratic party has, the party would very different from the traditional conception of libertarianism, certainly enough to alienate most strict libertarians (seriously, go to a socialist forum anywhere on the Internet and tell them the Democratic Party is socialist – see the reaction you’d get. It doesn’t inspire confidence that an equivalent takeover of the GOP by libertarians would satisfy or even please most libertarians)

                    1. There’s the pedant we know and love. Unless the factory deed is in the name of uncle sam it just ain’t socialism. Look, there’s still some private ownership in venezuela so it’s not REAL socialism. Looks like a duck, talks like a duck, it’s a duck even if it has a tattoo.

                    2. As I guessed, you completely missed the point – under your definition of socialism, the number of socialists in the country is so much greater than the number of libertarians that anyone trying to draw a comparison between the capability of each to take over a political party is a fucking moron. And you can cry “pedant” all you want but that doesn’t mean that libertarians taking over the GOP to the extent socialists took over the Democrats wouldn’t result in a lot of libertarians still being very unhappy with the situation given the inevitable compromises.

                3. Why the idea of taking them over? Why not just live within your means & settle for more influence? What you want, perfection or 0? Do you not buy the product that’s better, even if better by only 1%? Better is better.

                4. Yes sir it’s impossible to fully take over the GOP. Nationalists, law and order types and the religious right are not and will never be our allies.

              2. Unfortunately, Team Red is still all in on overseas military intervention, the drug war, and enforced biblical morality. They call that freedom?

    2. The presidential race should be about nothing but getting out the libertarian message to as many people as possible. There is no chance of actually winning a presidential race in the foreseeable future. Instead libertarians should focus on actually winning races downstream. I still think the best chance to expand libertarianism into the mainstream is to elect more libertarian leaning Republicans to congress at both the state and federal levels.

      1. And maintaining ballot access.

        1. ^^^ THIS

      2. I disagree. I think the presidential race should be about organizing the LP in as many places as possible. The LP itself has the Nolan chart/quiz thing – which even though outdated is uniquely useful in outreach. What the LP needs is to be able to ramp those booths up by an order of magnitude and leverage that interest into a traditional retail-type local political organization.

        If anything is obvious from this years campaign, it should be that the mass media is actively hostile – not neutral – to most libertarian ideas. There are some exceptions – local newspapers maybe radio – but even there it is a local LP organization that should be working that channel if it is to be effective.

        1. Just FYI, Bill Weld endorsed the Republican (Murkowski) over the Libertarian (Miller) in Alaska.

          I have no idea if you’re a Weld fan or not…just thought it worth mentioning in a discussion about building the party.

      3. Again and I will continue to say it. This is why we needed McAfee he was the only one who understands this. McAfee 4 LP Chair.

    3. Tarran: serious, no snark question: can you summarize your case for not voting for Johnson?

      Although I realize my vote doesn’t really count, I’ll probably vote next week because there are a couple of ballot issues that are important. But, on the presidential ticket, I’m torn between voting for Johnson, voting for no one, or maybe writing in some one.

      1. Gary Johnson lacks the leadership ability and judgement to make a good president. His lack of understanding of the basic principles of libertarianism means that he lacks a compass with which to make good policy decisions. His lack of judgement regarding other people means that he will likely outsource his policy decisions to advisors who suck. His lack of leadership ability means that regardless of whether or not he makes a good policy decision he will be incapable of bending the civil service to his will to execute that policy.

        That is why I won’t be wasting my vote on him.

        Nor will I be rewarding the LP with a sympathy vote for nominating an obviously incapable man.

        That is why I will be writing in “None of the Above” on my ballot when the time comes.

        1. Oh for fuck’s sake.

        2. OK, thanks.

        3. Random internet commenter finds man who has succeeded at elite levels his entire life to be incompetent and unintelligent, film at 11!

        4. People get the government they deserve. Good and hard.

      2. Maryland, I assume, from your name? I know there’s the one referendum on trying to require the Governor to preserve the party identity when replacing an AG or whatever who leaves office early. I’m against it anyway, but I’m especially against it because the state Dems are seizing on this for the sole reason that it would apply to two office holders, both of whom are Democrats, who might leave while Hogan’s governor.

        1. Sorry not Maryland, although that’s a bizarre ballot issue.

          Raven Nation

        2. I too live in the People’s Republic of Maryland and that ballot question is such a transparently gamed piece of shit that I’m amazed they had the audacity to put it to the ballot.

          Regardless of whether the current Republican governor will ever get the chance to replace the elected AG or comptroller for whatever reason, his nominations would have to be confirmed by the legislature, which is overwhelmingly controlled by Democratic Party.

          Why on Earth should the Maryland state Democratic Party, a private organization which has no direct accountability to the voters, get to decide who the replacement AG or Comptroller is? Are we gonna have all the elected officials’ decisions vetted by unelected organizations first? It really would no longer be a joke to call Maryland a soviet state.

          And of course, if the parties were reversed in the above scenario, the ballot measure would be handily defeated. It is only because of the Democrats’ overwhelming and longstanding control of the state that any Democrat voter would think this is a good idea.

          1. Note: I’m perfectly fine with e.g. a ballot measure that would force a special election should the office of AG or Comptroller be vacated outside of the normal election cycle. I would vote for that measure, even though the Democrats would almost always win such special elections, because it at least keeps political choices in the hands of the voters. I’d also be okay with a measure that made AG and Comptroller appointed positions. The legislature would still have the power to impeach them, and the Governor who appointed them could be voted out of office.

            But what is actually on the ballot? It’s blatant corruption, straight up.

      3. Voting for no one or writing in some one won’t be reported anywhere. If you vote for Johnson, you add one vote to his tally on Wikipedia forever.

        1. Darell Castle and Rocky de la Fuente’s totals will be tallied on wikipedia

          1. Johnson’s totals will be reported. Castle’s total will have to be teased out of fifty state final election report footnotes a month after the voting and added up by his supporters. But I’m sure you’ll see that his fraction is preserved on Wikipedia.

        2. I view Gary Johnson’s vote totals with the same supreme indifference that I view the tallies of similarly unfit candidates like Jill Stein, Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton.

        3. I know this is rather late to comment on this thread, but FYI someone does actually collate all of the vote totals for all of the minor parties in one handy place. Just hit the expand plus-sign on the other list, and behold the dozens of unheard of individuals who actually received votes for president (for everyone who registered as a candidate, that is, unregistered write-ins are tossed into a generic “write-in” bucket). Did you know that in 2012 there were 284,920 write-in votes, 5,770 votes for “none of the above”, and that the last place finisher was the Prohibition party (talk about a lost cause) with 518 votes?

          1. As that site says: ” Data is collected from many official sources and presented here in one convenient location.” So it’s not an official source itself, it’s somebody who tracked all that stuff down from the final election reports. Well, guess everybody needs a hobby… (Except the Prohibition Party: they just need to take up drinking.)

    4. Plenty of LP candidates do well in statewide races, coming in anywhere from 3-15%. Keep an eye on Texas, where I expect Mark Miller to get closer to 10% in the race for Railroad Commissioner.

      1. With endorsements from every major paper in the state, my *hopes* for Miller are higher, but as long as he hits the ballot access number, I won’t cry too much. Just because he’s far more qualified for the position doesn’t mean he’ll beat the straight-ticket voters.

    5. The problem is really one of the duopoly, t. The System is rigged against third parties at all levels, and forces them to run quixotic presidential campaigns to maintain ballot access. Anybody who really wants to wins AND is electable is not going to run LP. The most realistic hope for liberty is that one of the major parties implodes and reforms itself as more libertarian friendly.

      1. Or is slowly co-opted.

    6. I’m voting GayJay on principles, not principals. I don’t think Johnson has shown he has what it takes to do anything, but the basic ideals (yeah, I know that GJ hasn’t been an ideal libertarian) are what’s important to me.

    7. I like Johnson and he’d be a great president. Now you have.

      1. I agree with both of these statements and have met many other people who do as well.

        But maybe I get out more than tarran.

    8. Clifford III isn’t running any type of campaign that I can find. I know he’s on the ballot but even his official site has so little information I can’t even begin to consider him. I don’t even have an option for the House. Even the R’s only have a write-in.

  9. He is currently projected by FiveThirtyEight to receive 4.7 percent of the national vote,

    He won’t, and look for Nate Silver to play the prediction market ruse and radically adjust his model at the last minute.

    1. This post smells like cat vomit.

      1. It smells like the post-coital musk of a champion fighting rooster, i assume.

    2. Just shut up about it already.

      1. 1% is too optimistic

        1. He got 1 percent last time, running against a sitting president and a respectable challenger. This year he’s running against a crazy man and a crook.

          1. It would help greatly if his Veep choice, for whom he actively and openly whined, begged, and cried out for, didn’t actively and openly endorse the crook.

          2. GayJay got 0.99% in 2012. Only Ed Clark in 1980 has broken the 1% barrier

  10. What a shit. Fucking despicable to betray us after accepting the nomination.

    1. Yep. I wished he could wait until AFTER the election to have his “Come to Hillary” moment.

  11. And I would certainly add to the conversation the suggestion that a Weldless L.P. ticket may never have gotten anywhere near the amount of media interest and poll support without such an Acela corridor-approved wingman.

    My thoughts exactly, which is why I’ve been willing to tolerate Weld’s libertarian heresies for the simple reason that he added in gravitas and credibility what he lacked in ideological bona fides.

    But if he’s going to spend the last week actively sabotaging the ticket it’s been a complete and utter waste.

    1. But is it really true though. For the life of me, I don’t think I’ve ever run across someone who’s said, “Well, since Bill Weld is on the ticket…”. You already had a Governor in the running. What lent gravitas and credibility to Johnson’s campaign was the fact that the two frontrunners were Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump.

      What Weld, was supposed to bring to the game was Establishment fundraising. How’s that gone?

      1. Yes, I don’t know who these people are who are so impressed with William fucking Weld’s presence on the ticket. The guy has been irrelevant for the better part of two decades.

      2. What Weld, was supposed to bring to the game was Establishment fundraising. How’s that gone?

        The only thing he’s raised is a lot of hot air and free publicity and praise for Clinton. Johnson should have been seizing control of his messaging back from Weld some time ago…but he seems to lack the wisdom to understand when the people he trusts are screwing him over for their own purposes.

    2. “But if he’s going to spend the last week actively sabotaging the ticket it’s been a complete and utter waste.”

      That’s the thing. It’s not THAT hard to play nice for a week and honor the commitment you made to a relatively large number of people.

  12. “Who cares if I couldn’t have won the general at this point? I still would have made you damn proud to be an American!

    ? Austin Petersen (@AP4LP) November 2, 2016”

    Well said, I couldn’t agree more. I would have preferred McAffee. But Petersen would have also been an improvement. So what if the Democratic party machine would have non-stop focused on whatever happened with McAffee in Belize. The guy is articulate and could have made a lot more Americans aware of actual libertarian ideals. What Johnson has done is to mostly embarrass us and make even more people think we’re goofy at best. Has anyone at all been educated on libertarian principles by the Weld/Johnson ticket?

    And now this Weld hack has finished the job. Crikey, Hillary Clinton is honest? Fuck you, Weld.

    1. The guy is articulate and could have made a lot more Americans aware of actual libertarian ideals

      On what platform? McAfee and Peterson wouldn’t have gotten 1/10th the media coverage that Johnson and Weld got. One’s a kooky billionaire in an election that already has one running and the other is a fucking blogger.

      Johnson has had a pretty simple and consistent message: if you want fiscal conservativsm and social liberalism vote Libertarian. That’s about as effective a message as you can make without suicidally dying on hills like okaying racist and homophobic discrimination in private marketplaces.

      1. Johnson has had a pretty simple and consistent message: if you want fiscal conservativsm and social liberalism vote Libertarian.

        That’s true. But, it also tells me Petersen would have made a lot better a VP pick than Weld. Sorry, but Weld didn’t get Johnson the media attention.. Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton did. Petersen in the VP slot would have given the LP at least some hope for a bench going into 2020. And might have been able to put together a decent online strategy.

        1. Somebody should tell him that there is more to libertarianism than fiscal conservatism and social liberalism. Or maybe he could have read a book about the subject sometime in the last 4 years.

      2. “On what platform?”

        The intertoobz, of course.

    2. McAfee would have played the media, he knows how to make headlines it would have been amazing.

    1. Is this serious?, I mean serious as this guy getting indicted for this? Does anyone know?

      1. Yes, it’s serious. He was also trying to secure a job with the Clinton campaign from Podesta at some point.

        If this were an organized crime investigation and a member of the DOJ was feeding inside information to the target and looking for employment with them, he’d be removed from the position and likely charged.

    2. someone somewhere is going to have to go to jail eventually. this is why the whole “flaunting rule of law” thing is fucking toxic. It starts with the people at the top doing it, then it slides down to the people ‘covering’ for them, then it slides down to the people “just taking orders”, etc..

      1. Only bad things can happen when the rule of law becomes meaningless.

        1. Like two cops getting ambushed and shot to death in Iowa. If the law is illegitimate, law enforcers are the most illegitimate of all.

      2. Nothing will happen. Hillary will be elected, and the corruptocrats will be rewarded with more power and influence.

  13. McAfee would have been a better choice. There. I said it. Again.
    Libertarian moment this election: expired.

    1. I think that his running mate is very media savvy and could have gotten out a lot of effective messaging to younger voters.

    2. I disagree.

      We’ll never know who’s right.

      1. “McAfee/OJ, 2016. We understand the importance of due process.”

        1. Never ever charged or even a suspect in a crime.

          1. Why let that get in the way of a good joke?

            1. Fair enough.

    3. Yes he was that was our chance this year and we blew it. McAfee for chairman!

  14. Who cares if I couldn’t have won the general at this point? I still would have made you damn proud to be an American!

    ? Austin Petersen (@AP4LP) November 2, 2016

    Yes, Austin Petersen is a class fuckin’ act.

    1. Yet he kept his word to GayJay to fully support and endorse him after the dust settled. Even after GayJay literally shitcanned his token of esteem. And has the courage to call a spade a spade. Classy indeed.

    2. Austin has no qualifications for being president other than being a pompous asshole

      1. I’d vote for a bucket of vomit over a ticket with Weld on it. Which, I suppose, is pretty much the same thing.

        1. I’d vote for a bucket of vomit over a ticket with Weld on it.

          So… is that Trump or Clinton?

          1. Could be the libertarian case for either.

          2. They can only dream of someday elevating their images up to the level of a bucket of vomit.

      2. What are these “qualifications” you speak of? Sponging off the taxpayers for 20 years?

      3. I thought that was a prerequisite for being a libertarian at all?

    3. Yikes. Thanks for that link.

  15. There is absolutely no way I’m voting for a ticket that has a Hillary lapdog on it. I’ll vote for other LP candidates downticket, but not this idiocy. I voted for Gary last time and this time had been not very enthused about him, but now forget it. Orange middle finger.

    1. Same here.

    2. My thoughts exactly, Suell! Unfortunately, I already voted for GJ/Weld. Maybe I will try to vote again…for Orange.

      1. Just show up and say ‘no Ingles’ and vote 6 times for Trumputin.

        1. The people that vote often, like the ones that are zombies and show up to vote, tend to be the ones that vote for the party of the criminal running for office.

    3. Agreed, overgrown Oompa Loompa it is for me too.

    4. Let’s be honest, though. I know he’s anti-establishment, but isn’t Trump one of the least libertarian human beings who ever lived?

      1. It’s a tie. Hillary ain’t no beacon of freedom

      2. They’re both just awful.

        1. I disagree. They are also many things in addition to awful.

      3. It is a tie.
        Clinton is a socialist totalitarian, and Trump is a fascist totalitarian.
        Pick your poison.

  16. “Rachel Maddow’s MSNBC audience”

    Wow, her WHOLE audience?

    Side note, 4 weeks from now all the news networks that despise him are going to be wondering where the hell Donald Trump went when the ratings take a nose dive across the board.

    1. Along with Reason’s website traffic

  17. Just remember how many republicans said they’d consider the LP ticket if it was flipped and consider that…

    1. Its like a math proof:
      anti-Trump GOP vote = Weld
      therefore, anti-Trump GOP vote=Hillary

  18. Over half of Americans are not even aware of Hillary Clinton’s running mate.

    Since a libertarian vote is essentially a protest vote anyway, I’ll swallow my pride and vote for a guy with a wishy washy VP choice.

  19. Remember who Weld’s biggest supporter was, the guy who said having Weld as his running mate was absolutely critical. How many at the LP convention held their nose and voted for Weld just because they trusted GJ’s judgement as to what he needed in a running mate?* You still trusting GJ’s judgement?

    *Wasn’t a big part of that the fact that Weld was a rain-maker who had all sorts of connections to the moneymen, a guy who five minutes after he got the nom could make a few phone calls and the checks would just start rolling in? How did that ever pan out? Seriously – how did it pan out? I have no idea. Other than that I haven’t seen any reporting on how much money Weld’s raised for the LP, which I would think I would see a lot of mention of it if it were a lot of money, which leads me to suspect it’s not a lot of money.

    1. As far as I can tell, they raised no more money with Weld than they did in 2012 without Weld.

  20. Weld was never going to be V.P., even if Gary did receive EC votes.
    Weld was supposed to be a master fundraiser.
    Gary’s at around $12 million now.
    If he gets to 5%, the next LP candidate will start off with around that much next time and master fundraisers won’t be so critical to have on the ticket next time
    The best way to say ‘Fuck Weld’ is to vote LP

    1. No, the LP has effectively shut itself out of 2020 already. Thanks to GJ’s numerous gaffes and goofiness, it has been typecast as the clueless stoner party. I honestly have more hope for a 2020 GOP ticket with McMullin/Sasse or anyone else than I do that the LP will get its shit together.

      1. Weed is going to be problematic. People will look away from youthful indiscretions, but those same people aren’t ready for a commander-in-chief who was still getting baked only a few months before the election.
        If they go from 1% to 5% and get minor party status, the story will also be about how the LP is gaining traction.
        Someone potentially more viable will come sniffing around that $10 million honey pot next time.

        1. The Reform Party federal jackpot attracted big-timers like Jesse Ventura and Pat Buchanan.

          1. Where is the Reform Party now?

          2. Jesse was at least able to win a state-wide race as a 3rd-party candidate, although I’ve posted earlier that I consider him the slippery slope that led us to Donald. The Donald also considered running for President under the banner of the Reform Party. So what?

            The LP has its own nominating convention to vet whoever comes sniffing around their honey pot.

      2. ^This. There was an opportunity here to run someone as an alternative to political insiders and, well, Donald Trump, who might not have had any name recognition or political experience but expressed libertarian principles in ways that made sense. The LP needed a well-spoken, unintimidating, doctrinaire, charismatic candidate who could stand in juxtaposition to Trump and Clinton. They ran Johnson, bless his heart, a kook with a reputation for being an oddball, and Weld, who is actively trying to undermine the ticket. Whoever they run in 2020 will get less coverage than the reruns of Johnson’s “Aleppo moments” the major networks will gleefully play over and over again to remind voters to stay on the plantation.

    2. You need 100 million to compete.

      1. Less than 130 million voted in 2012. Even if the L’s were to replace the R’s or D’s 65 million was enough to win. Assuming that both the D’s and R’s are still around then that number drops to around 40 million.

        I am assuming when you say 100 million to compete you mean voters to have a chance to win. If you are talking about money then that number is too low.

    3. Yeah, if Johnson received Electoral College votes, Johnson would be president and the Senate would have to pick between Kaine and Pence for VP.

      1. Which is why I put up with Weld’s Weldness this election, assuming he’d do his part on the fundraising.
        He should have dealt with his Nader fears before accepting the V.P. invitation from Gary.

  21. On the plus side, maybe John Oliver will flip his assessment of the LP ticket.

    1. from what to what?

      I imagine the joke du jour is, “The Libertarian Party = so lame, even its own candidates are ‘not that into you’, really'”

  22. Suddenly the term “cucked” has applicability i never imagined possible.

    1. When you let your opponent fuck your running mate? Happens to us all at some point.

  23. The Libertarian Party should change its name, so no one is reminded that it is the party that put Bill Weld on a ticket.

    1. May as well just hijack the left’s approach? What about the progressives party?

    2. Why didn’t we do that with Root?

      1. Root wasn’t this bad

        1. Root was far worse.

        2. Yeah, the author of “Donald Trump: Candidate for Our Age” on Brietbart is that bad.

          1. Yeah, the author of “Donald Trump: Candidate for Our Age” on Brietbart is that bad.

            In SIV-land, that’s a positive.

            SIV might be the most disingenuous poster on all of Hit & Run, which is quite an accomplishment when you consider the existence of AmSoc, Tony, and John.

            1. SIV has sex with boy chickens. True story.

    3. The Pirate Party sounds cool. It’s working in Iceland.

      1. That might be an option!

      2. The Clown Party? You can take that multiple ways.

    4. The Liberal Party. Steal the word liberal back from the left. Sounds better than the atrocity that is the word ‘libertarian.’ May as well call it the Freedomist party or the progressivite party. No. no more. They took our fucking word. Let’s go get it back!

      1. Individualist Party? Or IP? Like in computers? A future looking platform based on freedom and technology? McAfee for chairman!

        1. Maybe the Freedom of Association Party, just so at the rallies we can hear all the people shouting “FAP! FAP! FAP! FAP!…”

  24. “there’s an argument to be made that Libertarian politics has grown much bigger than any fleeting cult of personality, a la Ross Perot and the Reform Party”

    Hopefully that’s a positive takeaway we can get from this. Back when things were a little more hunky dory I was getting worried about the folks on places like reddit getting way too attached to Gary and Bill as people. They were pleading them to keep running in 2020 or going for other offices, which would make it just a cult of personality then. We need to keep growing and grooming our own candidates instead of using crutches that will wither away or disappoint us.

    1. Yup. Party of principle and all that. I think we’ll see some candidates in 2018 who are both actual libertarians and functioning adults.

  25. Speaking of LP VP candidates, Wayne Allen Root is out actively stumping for Trump. I’ll take Weld over Root any day of the week.

    Besides, it’s the VP candidate’s job to embarrass the ticket.

    1. I’ll take neither of them, thankyouverymuch

    2. I’d also take neither.

      But yes, Root was easily worse. I’m not sure what in the hell the LP was thinking in 2008.

  26. This Monday morning quarterback says: I knew it!

    1. The Monday morning quarterback who didn’t show up until Wednesday afternoon?

  27. Since it appears he’s essentially applying for a job in Hillary’s cabinet in the hopes that she wins, it is likely that she encouraged him to do just for the lulz. I can only hope she locks him in corner room in the basement of the DNC and gives him the job of fumigating her pantsuits….

  28. Five months of is he/is he not is he is or is he ain’t supporting Hillary Clinton

    Come on Matt.

    1. My bad.

  29. If you’re supporting @GovGaryJohnson, don’t let someone’s words push you into making either bad choice for President.#VoteLibertarian

    Sorry, Mr Sarwark, but “He may be a shitty candidate, but he’s OUR shitty candidate” isn’t a particularly compelling argument.

    SATAN gets my vote. None of that “lesser evil” nonsense for me.

    1. If you’re going to go full evil, Cthulu is the clear choice.

      Why go bush league with a mere fallen angel?

      1. Because, like Weld, Cthulu already endorsed Hillary. Full evil indeed.

      2. Randall Flagg for president.

  30. I said “nearly unanimous” above; there are some libertarians out there defending Weld today, including Josh Guckert at The Libertarian Republic and a handful of people on Twitter.

    I presume the bleeding heart libertarians are all in for Weld.

  31. I seem to remember losing my mind in the comments of the article about the Kennedy/Weld interview. I’d like to admit my error and offer a heart-felt apology to everyone I’ve ever trolled on here. That is all.

      1. Awwww…..common!!! I’m being totally sincere you guys!!!

        1. Goober – it’s too late to apologize. Much too late.

          1. Your “Goober” comment reminds me…..while I’m at it I also may as well admit that I’ve always secretly had a deep admiration for the Paul family and the Liberty Movement, they actually have a pretty good platform and some great ideas……that Cato survey was bullshit anyways

        2. So, you’re like, being totally cereal?

    1. Okay, that angry old British man video is hysterical.


      1. Replace the tweed suit with a dirty bathrobe and that is pretty much what I look & sound like while I’m corpse-fucking threads

    2. Jesus, that was worse than normal.

  32. Why, Weld – WHY? Why did you appear on Rachel Maddow’s program? You didn’t have to appear in the first place or you didn’t have to say anything about Hillary – so why did you do it?

    Why did you do it?

  33. Chelsea Cristene ?@ChelseaCristene 13h13 hours ago
    @GovBillWeld Thank you for vouching for #HillaryClinton tonight. You are a class act and a breath of fresh air in troubled times.

    Nasty Michele ?@michelegruba 13h13 hours ago
    @GovBillWeld Thank you for standing up for Hillary Clinton on MSNBC tonight. You were thoughtful & honest & put our country first!

    Pamela Buff. Eyrick ?@pameye 12h12 hours ago
    @GovBillWeld I so admire this honorable man of courage as he takes a stand for what’s right. He vouched for HRC & he’s running for VP! Hero

    Sheila Javor ?@sheilaann1966 14h14 hours ago
    @GovBillWeld just watched you on Rachel Maddow. Very impressed with your integrity and honesty. Thank you.

    I keep seeing this shit on Weld’s twatter. It’s creeping me out how manufactured this looks. Marching orders from Correct The Record perhaps?

    1. Fake accounts making fake comments.

    2. This is why Weld did it. So for just one moment he could feel loved by all the ‘enlightened’ New Englanders and Beltway leftists he so jealously admires. Before they completely forget him by tomorrow.

  34. They both have an appetite for the booze?

  35. They both have an appetite for the booze?

    1. Not fair! I clicked preview once God dangit!

  36. I never liked the choice of Weld but Johnson should stand up to him on this statement. Hilary has zero ethics, outright lies, destruction of evidence, etc. How can you vouch for that?

  37. When the libertarian party becomes supporters of the corrupt status quo it’s clear the republic is dead.

  38. The R’s and D’s can nominate the most disreputable candidates imaginable (clearly), and they’re automatically deemed “legitimate” options by 80+% of the electorate. In order for a Libertarian candidate to have a chance, though, s/he has to pass a legitimacy threshold with people who don’t read Reason and don’t think about this stuff but once every four years, if that. Amazingly enough, the LP tried to do that this year, but I’m afraid that to most voters who only heard of him for the first time in the last couple of months, Gary never passed the legitimacy threshold. Even though he’s experienced and qualified and DECENT, to most non-libertarians Gary just comes off in interviews and townhalls as a nice enough but not-quite-ready-for-primetime stoner. Aleppo certainly didn’t help. Weld, for all his Hillary loving and ideological failings, DOES come off as someone who seems legit and I think that if their places were flip-flopped, the ticket would be in the 20+% range now. (My secret hope was that Justin Amash would’ve jump to the LP once it became clear that Trump was going to get the nod, or maybe even Rand Paul. I think either has enough cred that they’d be seriously considered by non-political voters.) It’s not fair that the Rs or Ds can offer up crap, while the libertarian candidate probably can’t survive any failings, even if they’re not real but only perceived, but it’s the hill that has to be climbed.

    1. Put down the bong, man.

      1. Put the prune juice down, man

  39. So if Austin Peterson seriously wants a chance, he better spend the next four years building both his resume, his reputation, and his media skills, because he can’t afford any missteps at all, and even then it’s a longshot.

  40. The same pragmatists who gave us Bob Barr, got Weld on the ticket. Not good.

    However, that’s not to say that DW Perry would have been a good representative instead. A great libertarian, but in the division of labor, his talents are best applied elsewhere.

    I hope that in response to the pragmatists the principled crowd doesn’t nominate an embarassment in 2020.

    1. There was nothing pragmatic about Barr.

  41. I’m here to vouch for Gary Johnson.

    “He is currently projected by FiveThirtyEight to receive 4.7 percent of the national vote, which would more than quadruple the L.P.’s previous record.”

    I wish more of my fellow libertarians understood the following:

    1) The proverbial “real libertarians” have traditionally accounted for less than 1% of the national vote.

    2) That means more than three-fourths of people supporting Johnson are probably not the proverbial “real libertarians”.

    3) All the data I’ve seen says that Johnson supporters are younger, more female, and more minority than Donald Trump voters.

    4) The younger, more female, more minority you are, the more likely you are to break for Hillary Clinton.

    5) If the LP ticket loses its street cred over this, that will likely send a one or two percentage point advantage to Hillary Clinton in swing states. (4.7% – 1% “Real Libertarian = 3.7% disproportionately young, female, minority).

    6) If you want to reward Hillary Clinton for getting Bill Weld to endorse her, then you should definitely abandon the LP ticket and attack its credibility.

    7) If you want to make Hillary Clinton sorry for pulling the rug out from under us, vote for Gary Johnson and vouch for his credibility.

    8) If you want to see Donald Trump defeat Hillary Clinton, then you should vocally support Gary Johnson’s credibility; otherwise, Hillary Clinton will gain a one to two percentage point advantage in swing states.

    1. There are the H&R comments.

      Go peddle your “facts” and “logic” somewhere else, hippie.

  42. The only thing that Reason should be writing right now is an article with the title: “We Fucked Up, Sorry. We’ll Try to Pretend that We Have Principles Moving Forward”.

    The Johnson/Weld ticket was their creation and they should own it. They’re the ones who wanted a mushy moderate ticket and they got it. And every time someone spoke out against Johnson and Weld’s many many apostasies they were called ‘purists’ and were ‘virtue signaling’.

    My God, the conservative publications who still denounce Trump have more principles than Reason.

    1. The Johnson/Weld ticket was their creation and they should own it

      This is a magazine. And its affiliation is with the Reason foundation, not the LP. Get a grip.

      1. I’ve been seeing people blaming Gillespie as if . . . ?

        I’m guessing they’re just pissed off and want to hold somebody accountable, and the libertarians here are the only libertarians they know.

    2. I doubt has that much sway over the LP nominating convention.

      And your criticism of going for popularity over principle would make more sense if Johnson/Weld had only pulled 1% of the vote. Instead, they’ve been wildly successful.

      They say you can’t argue with success, but some people will sure try.

      I can’t believe some of my fellow libertarians are being so irrational about this.

      And, yeah, treating a popularity contest as if it were a rational argument is irrational.

    3. So getting 5 times the votes and raising 5 times as much cash was a big mistake?

      1. If only we’d been more vocal in our support for the right to discriminate against homosexuals, the LP would have taken the White House!!!

        1. Yeah, I know . . . Poe’s law.

          Just for the record, that was parody of a fundamentalist position.

  43. Incidentally, this is why people vote for one candidate over another:

    That argument has been the central theme in American political discourse since the assassination of John F. Kennedy.

    If you can’t follow its logic–at least as well as Gary Johnson and Bill Weld–then you should probably stick to arguing with trolls and leave electoral politics to people who know what they’re talking about.

    Jesus, are you people gonna turn on Rand Paul when he sells out on the issues he needs to sell out in order to win?

    Senator Rand Paul is 1/100 * 1/2 * 1/3 = 1/600 of our government. Assuming all three branches of government are equal in power, President Rand Paul would be 1/3 of our government.

    Wouldn’t you rather have a 75% libertarian like Rand Paul in the White House than have Rand Paul as a 95% libertarian in the Senate?

    Do you imagine that the purpose of libertarianism is to seize the reigns of power and force America to accept libertarian policy whether they want it or not?

    The real point is to 1) take advantage of what the voter market will give us at the moment and 2) never stop marketing for even more acceptance of even more libertarian ideas.

      1. Do you do punctuation, too?

  44. Yes, that’s pathetic.

    But not nearly as pathetic, Matt, as the suggestion on these pages last week as to the libertarian case for voting for Trump.

  45. Oy

    Liberal Elephant and career bureaucrat says exactly what you’d expect him to say when on a Donkey show and courting Donkey voters.

    and libertarians are shocked (SHOCKED!)

    I really thought we as a group were more cynical than this

    1. It’s almost certainly the result of horsetrading.

      I’d bet money on it.

      If Hillary wins, I’d bet that Weld ends up appointed by the Hillary Clinton Administration to something.

      If Hillary didn’t offer him something to throw the ticket, she’s an idiot.

      If Weld didn’t ask for something in return for goosing Hillary’s numbers in a few swing states, then he’s the dumbest veteran politician in American history.

      How’s that for cynical?

      1. That’s more like it!

        I’ll take option 3.

        1. “If Hillary wins, I’d bet that Weld ends up appointed by the Hillary Clinton Administration to something.”
          but that would lend an air of credibility to the notion of being a libertarian.
          Low-information Dem voters next time, when presented with a libertarian candidate, will think “must be ok since Hillary put a libertarian in her administration”. For that reason, Weld, LINO or not, won’t be given a spot in her administration as it’s more important to continue to starve the 3rd-party of oxygen

          1. Hillary doesn’t care about ideology.

            Services rendered.

            She wants people to know that she rewards people for services rendered.

      2. Could be worse… could be betraying and pimping for The Antichoice and The Antidrug!

  46. The day we first heard it reported (weeks ago) that Weld was going to campaign for Hillary was probably the day that Weld agreed to sell the ticket short in exchange for something.

    Like I said yesterday, if the Hillary Clinton campaign will hire people to instigate violence at Trump events, there’s no reason to think she wouldn’t stoop to patronage.

    1. Like you said, it would be totally uncharacteristic of Hillary not to have connived with Weld to run his stalking horse campaign. I even wonder whether her campaign has an arrangement with Johnson. Not a political appointment, of course, because I don’t think Johnson would be interested in that. But maybe a vague, unwritten agreement to not to interfere with his marijuana business.

      1. Weld also said in one of his earlier departures from the ranch that he’d like a say in how the Republican party reorganizes itself after this election. Maybe he’s playing both sides of the fence. Would a politician do that?

  47. The LP has been around for almost 40 years now and has never gotten anyone into Congress. That is pathetic. I know that the argument for running an LP candidate for President is to get publicity for the party and get libertarian ideas out there. This seems to be a bad strategy. They need to focus on getting one Senate seat or a handful of Reps elected. That would get way more traction for libertarian ideas. That or just give up the whole bullshit party. Getting Weld on the ticket has been extremely counterproductive. Fuck him.

    1. They have a few house/senate races that look like maybe?? We really should focus on that.
      A libertarian or two in the house, combined with the liberty caucus republicans would help both movements

      1. If Bernie Friggin Sanders can get elected to Congress multiple times then an LP candidate in one single district in this country should be able to. If not, there is absolutely no reason for a Libertarian Party.

        1. And Bernie isn’t even a Democrat — he’s a freelance socialist. But that “Senator” before his name gave him the national credibility to run, even though, let’s face it, there are mayors of major cities who had gotten more votes getting elected than it takes to be elected Senator in Vermont.

      2. In a tightly-divided Congress, minor parties can wield disproportionate influence.
        Worked well for Ireland way back in the day before their full independence

      3. The Libertarian Party has a candidate, Joe Miller, in Alaska running for Senate against the incumbent Republican Lisa Murkowski.

        Weld endorsed Murkowski.…..g-hillary/

    2. It’s actually 45 years in December.

      1. So if the LP wins any states, would your encourage the Presidential electors (if legally permitted) to vote Johnson for Pres and someone other than Weld for VP?

        1. If Johnson takes Arizona, I am one of the electors. I would vote for the nominees of the delegates in convention. Others might feel differently.

          I hope this is a problem we end up having.

      2. If the LP ticket takes any states, would you encourage the electors (if legally permitted) to vote for someone besides Weld as VP?

        1. Sorry about the double post – you may be familiar with the server squirrels.

    3. If members of the _Reason_ commentariat want the Libertarian Party to behave differently, e.g., “They need to…”, I invite them to make this happen. My experience is that the LP is small enough that an individual can make a big difference, especially at the local and state level, _if_ he is willing and able to work and also is willing to work with people different than himself. For example, if you want the LP to run effective campaigns for state legislatures, then I invite you to do it.

  48. good, he has erased himself from the 2020 discussion. its past time for the party to find a better candidate, when are going to get past Johnson, weld, mcaffee, and these other fringe characters? I believe there are better representatives of the party out there…

      1. No one. The only guy ever was Ron Paul. The concerted effort to characterize the smart people as whack jobs is too well organized.

        Plus campaigning on ending the FED largesse party is hopeless anyway.

  49. Kennedy is such a babe

    1. We should have put her on the ticket with Johnson.

      1. Swap out Johnson for Rand Paul and I’m sold.

        1. If Kennedy would have campaigned naked on horseback, she would have won 50 states.

          You can bet there will be a candidate in the next 20 years that gets naked like the Italian bird.

        2. Great! Sacrifice choice for coercion and go to Hell with Sammy here. The site is the one you want…

    2. And yet Rachel Madow is one angry little fella.

  50. So, the majority of Republican “big wigs” have crawled to Hillary to munch the “crust of the muffin” OR a few have supported the Libertarian candidate(s), one of whom is crawling toward Hillary.

    Stated versus revealed preferences for the win, Alex.

    One can just FEEL the wheels spinning toward liberty!

    We FUCKED but good.

    But nothing a carbon tax won’t cure.

  51. Weld deserves all the scorn he gets.

    ‘Vouching’ for Hillary’s ‘high moral character’ is so incredibly stupid given what we know about her, it defies logic.

    This person is of low character and moral fibre. Period.

    1. Weld’s inability to criticize a “friend” or as Weld thinks of it, a fellow member of the political elite, is the essential problem with politics. Hillary is truly despicable. I’d call her a scumbag but I’m afraid that the makers of Trojans will sue me for slander. No sane person can think of her as trustworthy. She makes Bernie Madoff look respectable.

      In his inane defense of the utterly indefensible, Weld manifests PID (political insider disease) in an extreme form usually usually only seen in hired political hacks. It would be less disgusting if Weld were simply paid to say what he said but I suspect that he really feels the need to defend a fellow insider simply because they are members of the same sorority.

      May he live to be betrayed by someone even less principled than he.

  52. Come on guys, stop imposing your Purity Tests (TM) on this team of libertarian Pragmatists (TM).


  53. Cancel his campaign credit cards.

    1. Delete his account.

      1. Delete Weld in his entirety. Remove his name from all documents, strip him from all public records and all social media. Let him wander the earth forever ignored by all whom he encounters until he himself forgets that he ever existed.

        Or just tell him to fuck off.

  54. Considering some of the previous “libertarian” candidates (Barr, Root, Badnarik …) the gamble on Weld to achieve some kind of respectability wasn’t the dumbest of moves given what was known of Weld at the time. He clearly wasn’t a hard core libertarian but no one had reason to believe that he would outright betray Johnson and libertarians in general.

    Lesson learned? Find someone who A) understands liberty in all its forms and B) has the presence before an audience to communicate ideas clearly, especially when discussing individual choices like drugs, guns, minimum wages and Nazi wedding cakes.

    1. Indeed, the people that become the Libertarian candidates continue to make the whole party look stupid. The founders would surely roll in their graves.

    2. What I’d really like is a principled libertarian who is a pointed skeptic of everything. Sort of like how Dr. Phil goes “And how’s that working for you?” whenever someone says or asks something fucking dumb (in this case with the assumption that government action on a given issue is great or needed). Let’s drill it into people’s heads that government isn’t superman. Just passing a law and throwing money or coercion at it doesn’t actually fix anything 99% of the time, and we pretty much have the studies to prove it, just need to be able to rapid fire quote them. Then there’s a lot less pressure to placate so many different groups if we can all just agree that what we’re doing now isn’t working.

    3. …and isn’t a crypto-christianofascist out to coerce women, or a crypto communist out to legalize slavery and totalitarianism by calling it anarchy. Oh, and who has at least been in the party mebbe a year–and read some books!

  55. Russel/Stossel 2020 – Make America ‘stash again!

  56. Most of those complaining were complaining from day one. They jump on anything they can to prove they were right.

    Few complained when all the conservatarians praised Reagan, the Pauls and all the other right wingers. But mention one slightly positive thing about a liberal and they lose it.

    Is he calling for an increase in government power? No. Calm down people.

    1. Good point. If by right-wing you mean christianofascist and by left-wing, communo-fascist, we share ideas, if not a cohesive vocabulary.

  57. Weld is, after all just a political opportunist. Choosing him showed me the quality (actually the LACK thereof) of Johnson’s thought processes. Johnson lost my vote at the starting line.

  58. Weld is a hack and not a Libertarian and Johnson is very disappointing to me. It seems like he’s either stoned all the time and not a functional stoner, or has lost too many brain cells. Aleppo? We need someone intelligent and articulate to run like Ron Paul, not either one of these guys. And please explain the 2A to Weld and Johnson because it’s not about hunting. And I think, unfortunately many Libertarians don’t comprehend the 2A. I voted for Trump, yes he’s an a$$hole but clinton is a lying criminal that should spend the rest of her miserable existence in prison for treason and other high crimes. The Supreme Court is going to be the problem and when it comes to Trump selections or clinton’s I will choose Trumps any day.

  59. I think the best thing Gary Johnson can do for his campaign and the Libertarian Party now is to publicly rebuke Bill Weld and ask him to step down.

  60. I – a libertarian – denounce Bill Weld for saying Hillary Clinton is “a person of high moral character.”

    She is, in FACT, ruthless bloodthirsty war monger and sworn enemy of individual liberty.

  61. Johnson is weak tea in many ways, but Weld is just shitty.

    If this is what you get picking a Serious Career Politician rather than some wacko, let’s stick with the wackos.

  62. All these things were true of LP 35 yrs. ago, too. So what?

    1. Fine. I move we nominate Virginia Postrel to take his place. Do we have a second?

  63. Every single person in the hierarchy of the LP and every single delegate who voted for these two fools needs to be removed. They did the message untold harm.

  64. Third party candidates don’t HAVE to be neutral, as far as I know. They probably can’t legally collaborate or collude with another campaign. But if Weld was consistently pro Clinton while touting the LP ticket, that’s his call to make.

    But he wasn’t. And the timing of this is just Bush league. With the election days way his running mate is collapsing in the polls and Trump is surging. So the stage was set for him to take off the mask. In one move he undermined Gary Johnson, party leadership, and supporters who genuinely thought the LP ticket was an alternative to both parties.

    Not even Jill Stein is pulling this kind of stunt, and the Green Party is a fringe of the far left. You expect them to be friendly to Clinton. But THEY stuck to their guns. What is that? Jill Stein was more principled?

    The LP support was limited to a small segment of white center right, and Weld probably burned even some of that bridge. Millennials are flocking back to Clinton, so that “young generation likes LP” glow is gone. I honestly CANNOT believe how badly Gary Johnson botched his campaign. Do you see Pence or Kaine undermining their running mate on live tv this way? He had no control over anything, it seems.

    1. It is beyond question that Jill Stein is more principled than William Weld. It’s just that her principles suck.

      Being principled is only as good as the principles themselves. However, most people despise those with principles. Ask Barry Goldwater about how far his principles took him.

      America doesn’t want principled politicians. If it did, characters like G W Bush, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama would be selling cheap knock off Rolexes from the back of a station wagon.

  65. like Curtis said I can’t believe that any body can make $8668 in one month on the internet .
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  66. Weld should be kicked off the ticket.Simple as that.

  67. Ugh. Both Weld and Johnson suck, they don’t represent libertarianism and their a complete embarrassment, especially Gary’s insane outbursts on TV. All he does is give the people who call third parties “crazy” more ammo, sorry folks I’ll say it once and I’ll say it again, its Trump for me. If I am going to support somebody who holds the same ideas as me, its going to be somebody who is consistent and knows how to control his/herself like Ron Paul. At least with Trump we will get somebody who will be more restrained in foreign policy and better on domestic economic policies, and if Trump fails, he’s not a libertarian, he’s a Republican if the labels matter anymore. I want a real libertarian on the national stage, not a Republican lite who turns people off with childish outbursts like Johnson and flip flopping stupidity like Weld.

    1. Yes but hundreds of candidates down ticket are just right. And without these, what would Heinlein have called them? …these idiot sons of liberty, we’d have a much tougher go of changing those murdering looter laws. Besides, they might learn. Four years hence even McAfee can boast “in all my years” (instead of weeks) “as a card-carrying, dues-paying libertarian…”

      1. You mean down-ticket Libertarians like Joe Miller for Senate in Alaska, who Bill Weld also stabbed in the back by endorsing Lisa Murkowski?

        I have no sympathy for a party that put a Clinton mole like William Weld up as their VP candidate. If they’re so inept that their presidential candidate pitched for a statist like Weld as his running mate (and his record clearly showed he was no libertarian) and they were dumb enough to trust him and pitch him to the LP voters as acceptable, they don’t deserve funding to help their ticket. When their presidential candidate *still* hasn’t figured out that Weld has screwed over the party and is sabotaging them, they don’t deserve more funding. And they’ve got nobody to blame but themselves for failing.

        William Weld shouldn’t be getting heckled at campaign rallies…because he shouldn’t be speaking at campaign rallies. Johnson should have yanked him off the campaign trail immediately after his remarks to Maddow.

      2. Incidentally. the Boston Globe five months ago correctly predicted that Weld might be trying something like this by running on the Libertarian ticket, in an attempt to throw the election to Hillary Clinton, his old colleague from the Nixon trial (whose husband tried to appoint him ambassador to Mexico)

        Here’s a good story for you. Reason…why hasn’t Gary Johnson figured out that Weld is *intentionally* undermining the Libertarian Party ticket yet?

      3. re: “what would Heinlein have called them?
        Because of course a writer of science fiction is the go-to for all of the most pertinent of political ideas.

  68. That was the most ballsy thing I’ve seen happen this entire election season.

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  70. STILL better than most alternatives I saw, and the ticket is STILL in like Flint to do its real job: state-by-state pick up more than the vote spread between the looter that gets a government job and the loser that goes back to chasing ambulances. Every Tammany grafter who loses to a pro-life-after-death fanatic is going to come looking for the platform committee with blood in his eye for change–the way they did when George Waffen Bush got to destroy the economy instead of Saint Albert goring it at the hip. And every rich cattleman who loses the chance to regulate competitors to death–because a libertarian got the 2% of the vote that were rightfully his–will throttle the life out of antiabortion plank writers who ruined his chances or pretending to be for lower taxes. That is the genuine change the LP has been bringing about for four and a half decades, tanks to voters and contributors. Fabian works!

  71. I don’t think it really matters that Weld stated one of the most corrupt individuals in politics has high moral character. I think most people here are concerned he said it with a straight face. He might actually believe it.

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  73. f**k Bill Weld. Screw the LP until they can identify a libertarian to choose as a candidate.

  74. until I looked at the paycheck saying $4730 , I did not believe that…my… brother woz like actualy bringing in money part time from there computar. . there friend brother started doing this for less than 7 months and resently paid for the morgage on there home and bought a new Cadillac …….


  75. until I looked at the paycheck saying $4730 , I did not believe that…my… brother woz like actualy bringing in money part time from there computar. . there friend brother started doing this for less than 7 months and resently paid for the morgage on there home and bought a new Cadillac …….


  76. until I looked at the paycheck saying $4730 , I did not believe that…my… brother woz like actualy bringing in money part time from there computar. . there friend brother started doing this for less than 7 months and resently paid for the morgage on there home and bought a new Cadillac …….


  77. johnson/weld, the most UNlibertarian candidates that could be nominated….yet the L.P. scratches their heads and wonders why the libertarians don’t get more votes…

  78. I be certain …that…my best friend had been realie taking h0me money part-time on their apple laptop. . there friend brother haz done this 4 less than 10 months and as of n0w paid the loans on their h0me and bourt a brand new Cadillac .
    look at this

  79. until I looked at the paycheck saying $4730 , I did not believe that…my… brother woz like actualy bringing in money part time from there computar. . there friend brother started doing this for less than 7 months and resently paid for the morgage on there home and bought a new Cadillac …….


  80. until I looked at the paycheck saying $4730 , I did not believe that…my… brother woz like actualy bringing in money part time from there computar. . there friend brother started doing this for less than 7 months and resently paid for the morgage on there home and bought a new Cadillac …….


  81. until I looked at the paycheck saying $4730 , I did not believe that…my… brother woz like actualy bringing in money part time from there computar. . there friend brother started doing this for less than 7 months and resently paid for the morgage on there home and bought a new Cadillac …….


  82. I completely agree with Kennedy. Keep Weld away from our party! If he wants to register and vote Libertarian, fine, whatever, but he better never surface as a candidate ever again.

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