Libertarian vice-presidential nominee Bill Weld took an enormous amount of crap from Libertarians after he appeared on MSNBC last week to "vouch" for "Mrs. Clinton."
"Well, I'm here vouching for Mrs. Clinton, and I think it's high time somebody did. I'm doing it based on my personal experience with her, and I think that she deserves to have people vouch for her other than members of the Democratic National Committee."
The anger and annoyance at Weld were understandable. WTF, really?
But it was also a misinterpretation of what Weld was talking about. He was effectively saying that Clinton, whom he's known for decades, is not a monster or as corrupt as many of her detractors believe. She was, Weld said, "a reliable and an honest person." (Yes, yes, I know: WTF, really!)
There's plenty of room to question why the LP VP candidate would feel a need to do say anything positive about one of his opponents, especially in the waning days of an election. But Weld's commentary fell far short of anything approaching an endorsement for Clinton.
Indeed, the former two-term governor of Massaschussets has written an op-ed in the New Hampshire Union Leader that leaves no question that he's all in with Gary Johnson.
As the former Republican governor of Massachusetts, the state next door, I can testify firmly that neither Trump nor Clinton would help our nation progress in the direction that it needs to go….
But here's what honest Gary Johnson and I have to offer the nation, and the "Live Free or Die" state of New Hampshire, that neither Trump nor Clinton has to offer: Executive experience and a commitment to limited and constitutional government.
We believe in term limits for all federal officials, legislative as well as executive….
the Johnson/Weld ticket is the only one that stands firmly behind free trade, behind increasing immigration, behind cutting federal spending, and behind decentralizing political power. Our ticket is the alternative that Americans are craving.
Over the years, I've had grave concerns about the direction that some social conservatives have attempted to take the Republican Party. I've also felt the Democratic Party has failed to adapt to the reality that free markets, and not government spending, is the driving force for our economy….
Despite the side-show distractions in this campaign, the issues voters care about are jobs and the economy. On this, the differences couldn't be starker between the Johnson/Weld ticket, and what Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are proposing.
We have pledged to submit a balanced budget to Congress within 100 days of taking office. Our records prove we will support tax and regulatory reforms that will put Americans back to work….
Here's the question that Americans need to ask themselves: If you needed someone to take care of your household while you went on a vacation, to whom would you trust that responsibility: Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton or Gary Johnson and myself?
Read the whole thing, which includes plenty of barbs tossed in Clinton's direction, including this:
Nor does Hillary Clinton present an opportunity for preserving Constitutional government by limiting its involvement in the economy, in our personal lives, and keeping our military out of countries where our involvement does more harm than good.
And read this other Union Leader piece, from its publisher Josephy W. McQuaid. He responds to his paper's readers, many of whom say the publication should change its endorsement from Gary Johnson to Donald Trump. McQuaid's whole column is worth reading, but here's his conclusion, in which he quotes a retired editor of the paper:
I hope the newspaper stands firm. Perhaps Trump is better than Hillary Clinton. That doesn't matter. Both are unfit to hold office….
This 2016 election is a disaster no matter who wins the presidency. If America is to do better in 2020, the fight starts now. A vote for Johnson is not merely a protest against two unworthy candidates, it's a statement of opposition to the corrupt and failed two-party system that nominated them.
Back in July, Reason interviewed Gary Johnson and Bill Weld, whom I pushed to say something bad about Clinton. Take a look and read the transcript here.
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