Libertarian Party

Read Austin Petersen's Goodbye Note to the Libertarian Party

Second-place finisher in 2016 presidential primary will run for Missouri Senate seat as a Republican.

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Austin Petersen, the second-place finisher [*] for the 2016 Libertarian Party presidential nomination, is running for the U.S. Senate seat in Missouri currently held by Democrat Claire McCaskill. But he's running as a Republican and explains his decision below. For an exclusive, in-depth interview and podcast with Petersen, who also worked as a producer on Judge Andrew Napolitano's Fox Business show, Freedom Watch, go here.

Dear friends in the Libertarian Party,

For the last eight weeks, I've spent six hours a day calling my supporters to ask them their thoughts on how I might best advance liberty. I took the time to listen to every single persons' opinion about a potential opportunity to seek a seat in the U.S. Senate here in my home state of Missouri.

Of the thousands of people I spoke to, all encouraged a run, hundreds donated, and the vast majority offered their opinion regarding which party I should align with. Over 98% of them, including registered Libertarians, independents, Republicans, and even Democrats, said to run GOP.

For that reason and others, I have chosen to listen to them, as they are the lifeblood of all efforts that I will make to advance our common cause. They are the people whose time, energy, and money I will need to bring our movement a victory that we desperately need. Without the grassroots, I am incapable of action on the field. I feel I must act as a good representative and steward of their hopes and dreams for a better future.

I have served the Libertarian Party in nearly every capacity, at every level, from your humble volunteer coordinator at your national office, to one of your top contenders for President of the United States. Any future successes I may garner in the realm of politics will come in large part because of the experience and opportunities you gave me to advance American freedom, and for that I thank you.

Sadly, I must depart for now. I go with no ill will, and wish you all the best in your future endeavors.

Best Wishes,

Austin Petersen

For Reason's interview with Petersen, go here.

[*]: The original story mistakenly reported Petersen finished third at the LP National Convention.

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  1. Good. Rand Paul needs help.

    1. Exactly, I don’t care what label is used. I care about the policies.

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  2. the point of running for office is to win. Right or wrong, it’s easier within the framework of one of the parties. Things are more easily changed from within than without.

    1. More libertarian/conservatarian in congress is a good thing. If he’s got to do it as a republican to win, then so be it.

      1. Woo-Hoo, Yeah Man!!!

        Now we can (collectively) criticize him for being Glibertarianishly Impure ***AND*** Repugnantishly Impure!!! Have it BOTH ways; eat our cake, and have it, too!

    2. At a time when unaffiliated voters are growing at the expense of both parties, now is a better time than ever to force systemic change. The Prohibition Party got what they wanted without any major success. First past the post is indisputably archaic, all we need is to get the American people to understand the alternatives.

      1. all we need is to get the American people to understand the alternatives.

        Yeah!! And I want a pony!

      2. Great in principle. But practically speaking if he ran for that office as an (L) what would happen is someone else, somewhere between he and McCaskill (i.e. someone more statist than he) would run on the (R) ticket.

        The net result would guarantee a win for someone more statist than him.

        1. That is a very short-sighted goal. Knowing Petersen’s past, I imagine that his ultimate goal is to improve the state of libertarianism, not simply winning a seat for the sake of having a seat.

          1. No, it is a long sighted goal. Not an impatient and unrealistic one.

            The more libertarian leaning people actually in office the more viable a Libertarian party becomes.

          2. That is a very short-sighted goal. Knowing Petersen’s past, I imagine that his ultimate goal is to improve the state of libertarianism, not simply winning a seat for the sake of having a seat.

            And yours is very narrow-minded. Plenty of pragmatists, anarcho-capitalists, utilitarians, and other non one-true-Libertarians wouldn’t mind if the Libertarian ideal wholly subsumed the party such that it was Republican in name only.

            The worst possible thing that could (and possibly has) happened to the libertarian party is that it becomes a pure, one-party ideology. I’d much rather have the LP and the libertarian-heavy GOP arguing about how to make people free-er than pretty much any alternative. President Gary Johnson with a libertarian-packed congress would be a fucking nightmare. Literally. You’re going to have to dream up enough libertarians to pack congress, and the majority of them are going to be left-leaning ‘libertarian’ ex-RINOs like Bill Fucking Weld.

            1. What is narrow-minded about being realistic? I agree that it would be nice if the Republicans adopted a libertarian platform, but that is never going to happen. People who think that libertarianism can infiltrate a catch-all operation like the Republican Party have no understanding of basic political theory. Unless you believe that libertarianism can somehow become broadly accepted by a majority of the electorate, the only hope for libertarians is to encourage political change through their own distinct infrastructure.

              1. What is narrow-minded about being realistic?

                There are more libertarian-leaning Republicans in Congress, right now, then there have ever been Libertarians in any Federal-level elected position in total. A libertarian-leaning Republican won an electoral vote in the presidential election without even running while the LP candidate couldn’t even get in the debates and your ‘realistic’ assertion is that the LP, as the LP, is *the* way to effect change.

                Libertarians nominally cleave toward classical liberalism. Of the three parties, GOP, Democrats, and the LP, none have exclusive license to it and to assume that one or more does, because of their name, is plain-old, non-political cluelessness.

                You’ve got a pet theory, it plainly doesn’t work, and you’re acting like the masses of idiots who don’t agree with you or perceive your wisdom have no clue. Enjoy the Libertarian Party that you so richly deserve.

                1. I understand that Austin Petersen has a better chance of winning a seat as a Republican. But by choosing to run as a Republican, he is discarding what is best for libertarianism to instead pursue what is best for Austin Petersen. The “infiltrate the Republican Party” strategy only works in a world that you can imagine libertarianism becoming mainstream. Your post is so polluted by ad hominems that I cannot really tell what you are trying to say, but it sounds to me that you believe libertarianism has the potential to be a popular enough ideological approach to become mainstream. That makes me question your understanding of the reality of American politics.

                  Instead of your “pet theory”, I think that it is a much easier to battle to win if we sought to convince the American public that two-party politics is inherently pernicious to a healthy democracy, which is a belief that is already more popular than libertarianism is. Austin Petersen is potentially a strong candidate who could have done great work for the Libertarian Party by showing the American public that ideas outside of the Democratic and Republican platforms exist. If more strong candidates worked at decreasing the draconian ballot access laws and archaic first-past-the-post seat allocation in this country, I think that libertarianism will have greater long-term success as a minority ideology rather than trying to convert enough people to libertarianism so that it will become present in one of two big tent parties.

          3. There is no ‘state of libertarianism’ .

            Government is not about what party one belongs to–it is supposed to be about governing.

            Governing in a manner compatible with liberty is what we’re after–not party loyalty.

    3. How’s that working out for you?

  3. Don’t let the door hit your ass. Unless you’re into that. There’s nothing wrong with that if you are. Really.

    1. Rule 34. I’m sure there are videos of it somewhere.

  4. I hope he at least talks up the LP angle instead of running and hiding from it. The GOP doesn’t seem to have an opponent strong enough to take on Claire McCaskill, a stupider, more repulsive version of Hillary Clinton? How pathetic is the freaking GOP in Missouri that they’re worried about their ability to outwit a retard and how can an association with the LP be a liability in that case? Grow some balls, you people, stop being such damp-sponge squishes and dare to get in-your-face about your sticking up for the right principles.

  5. I’m rooting for you Austin

  6. Anyone seeking public office, or even just to be taken seriously, is wise to distance themselves as far as possible from GayJay.

    1. He’s history’s greatest monster.

      1. Hitler can finally rest easy and there will be a new standard response when some asks “you know who else _____ ______ _ _____ ?.

        1. Wants to fuck the rabbit?

    2. Yeah, a 2-term governor with a great record who earned 3 times more votes than any other Libertarian ever. Huge embarrassment.

  7. The ISideWith thing said Austin was my top match last year. I sometimes find his style a bit annoying but, whatever, dude is clearly all about Liberty.
    Here’s hoping he’s ready for the endless accusations of sexism for daring to challenge a female Democrat incumbent.

  8. Might as well try to elect more republican libertarians, like Rand.

    Good luck with trying to convince the SJW party to adopt any libertarian position

  9. What a delusional idiot. Libertarianism will never succeed without a discernible identity, which requires a separate party without the institutional weight of the Democratic and Republican Parties. Popular opinion already attempts to conflate libertarianism as an appendage of the Republican Party and we need to explain why we are different, not pretend that we can operate from within their framework.

    1. Continuing to try to get the LP off the ground when it clearly has failed is delusional. Ron Paul showed us what and how we could advance liberty through the RP. Besides the RP is supposed to be for smaller government so it should naturally be libertarian in the first place. We need to take it back and people like Petersen will help restore our freedoms

      1. “Besides the RP is supposed to be for smaller government”

        They aren’t.

        1. sup?posed.

          [s??p?zd, s??p?z?d]

          ADJECTIVE

          generally assumed or believed to be the case, but not necessarily so:

          “people admire their supposed industriousness”

      2. “We need to take it back”

        It was never ours in the first place.

        1. Well then we need to take it front.

          1. Dude, you never go from back to front.

        2. Actually, if one goes back to the basics of the GOP, back when it first started, then yes, back then it would have easily passed for much of what we call ‘libertarian’ today–and the things that it would have been in conflict with are those same leftist intrusions that vex real libertarians to this day

      3. Look at every other civilized country on the planet; they are all governed by more than two parties. The only hope that libertarians have to make their ideology stick is to force a system that is more friendly to fringe parties. And the only way to do this is to maintain the Libertarian Party as a cohesive unit. There hasn’t been a political environment to achieve this since before World War I, and Petersen is clearly willing to throw that opportunity away. Big tent parties have no incentive to adhere to any ideology, and the approach of the DP/RP is diametrically opposed to the basic principles of libertarianism.

        1. And look how well it’s working out for all those other countries. Bastions of liberty and freedom, let me tell you.

          More political parties is not a virtue unto itself. It’s the quality of the participants that matters.

          1. And look how well it’s working out for all those other countries. Bastions of liberty and freedom, let me tell you.

            Let me guess. You’ve never lived anywhere else in the world have you.

            1. Let me guess, you have no idea what you’re talking about.

              Please show me where, exactly, a multi-party political system has actually made people more free — economically and culturally — than they are here, with our two-party system.

              I’ll wait.

              1. There’s quite a few. The most obvious is Switzerland – has 10 parties in its legislature, 5 in its ‘presidential council’ (their equivalent of our executive cabinet and presidency). That multi-party system has ensured that it remains decentralized, that politics is not viewed as a way to smote internal enemies, and that govt actions are both minimal – and when not minimal, astonishingly pragmatic, effective, and anti-corrupt.

                Estonia is now comparable to the US in freedom – but 25 years ago it was a Soviet satellite with complete central planning and a large transplanted Russian minority that is subversive of independence itself. The 6 parties in its legislature are what have enabled them to dismantle the previous state without creating cronyism or rent-seeking. Their govt now spends less as a % of GDP than we do – with virtually no public debt and a very prosperous economy.

                There are probably a dozen or two that are as free or freer than we are – more if you only measure freedom for the marginalized – and all are multi-party. But these two I can specifically identify ‘multi-party’ as a CAUSATIVE factor for them remaining free (Switzerland) and becoming free (Estonia).

                But hey – slink back to your fucking Republican overlords and their ‘libertarian-wing’ that doesn’t have the balls to even allow political competition to their good/evil binary world view.

          2. Right, because entrusting monopolies with protecting your freedoms is an awesome idea, and there is no relationship between the quality of a service and the strength of a monopoly.

            1. Where did I say anything of the sort? I said that the number of parties is irrelevant compared to the quality of the participants. And if you have shitty political actors, it doesn’t matter if they’re confined to two parties or spread across fifty.

              Embracing multiple political parties as a virtue unto itself is idiotic, and has not proven to increase anyone’s freedom anywhere.

              European nations have two dozen different leftist factions, all with some manner of political power; are they better off for it? Would we be?

              Libertarians who lament ‘the two party system’ don’t like to be reminded that multi-party systems are rarely any better in practice.

              1. Embracing multiple political parties as a virtue unto itself is idiotic, and has not proven to increase anyone’s freedom anywhere.

                So competition works in the private economic sphere – but in politics a duopoly that uses its power to suppress competition and uses its elections to rent-seek is no problem at all.

                Do you actually claim to be a small-l libertarian?

        2. This is patently untrue. In fact virtually every “civilized” country has a de facto two party system. Germany has SDP and CDU, the UK has Labor and the Tories, Canada has the Conservatives and Liberals. Some countries have more successful third parties than the US, but even then they’re basically just minor coalition partners a major party (Germany’s FDP, for example).

          The US’s system may be more punishing of third parties, but the tendency toward a duopoly is inherent in democracy.

          1. I did not say that the United States is the only two party system, but that it has the only government that entirely comprises two parties.

            On the other hand, your comment regarding the tendency of democracy to create a duopoly is “patently untrue.” Germany was very influenced by the Anglo approach to party politics, but many countries consciously avoided it and do not have the same discernible dominant parties in the way that CDU/SDP are in Germany.

            1. But what does it matter how many parties there are, when in every system coalitions are formed that narrow the sides down to effectively two (the government and the opposition)? Coalitions will be formed one way or the other, and in the US we merely form our coalitions prior to the elections rather than after them. Even if you got your dream of the US switching to a system in which minor parties were represented, your Libertarians would still have to join the Republicans in coalition or accept a position of powerlessness, just like now.

              1. No we don’t form those coalitions prior to elections. Our two-party system is NOT a consequence of the normal post-election division into govt v opposition. It is a consequence of the harshest (by far) ballot access laws in any democracy – and at the national level (where the ballot access laws are lenient compared to state races) the least representative legislature in the world. Which turns our system itself into insiders v outsiders – and it also turns each party into insiders v outsiders. All of the outsider stuff in each party (identity politics in the Dems and ideology politics in the GOP) is pure cookie crumbs.

              2. If you want parties that represent ideologies rather than special interests, it matters very much how many parties there are. Two-party systems have no ideological basis for their parties, because it would be suicidal to confine themselves to a minority of the electorate. But when parties are separated by ideology, of which there would be at least five in a healthy democracy, public discourse moves away from discussion of people in favor of discussion of ideas. See every presidential debate in this country. When there are only two parties there is no incentive to distinguish oneself on political substance because it is so much easier to talk shit about your opponent’s past mistakes.

            2. There are, almost without exception, two reasonably stable systems: 1 party system, and 2 party system; and it is absolutely inherent to democracy.

              No matter how many parties you start out with, they will tend to coalesce into two coalitions, because ultimately the tacit assent of a majority (meaning at least 50.01% of the country hates you less than the alternatives) is necessary to win. So political parties seek to broaden the appeal of their platform, or broaden their coalition, just enough to capture a majority, and no more (lest they make unnecessary compromises to voters they don’t need to get over the finish line).

              If you look at election trends in most western countries going back decades, you’ll consistently see two major parties or coalitions of parties that consistently align with each other and rarely or never with other parties. Sure, some parties disappear and others spawn, but almost invariably the new ones are just reincarnations of old ones that participate in the same old coalitions.

              1. So I guess according to you the United States is a one party government because opposition parties don’t count for anything? Thinking of a coalition as a “party” overlooks many behavioral features of these multi-party governments. I think it is very important to look in this in terms of monopoly behavior. There is no incentive to be accountable to the voters in the eternal pendulum of two-party politics. The success of En Marche this year should be an example of the virtues of having an outlet for voters to dismiss traditionally popular parties.

        3. Big tent parties have no incentive to adhere to any ideology, and the approach of the DP/RP is diametrically opposed to the basic principles of libertarianism.

          As any libertarian should know and recognize, this is more of a problem with big tents rather than any specific ideology.

          1. Yes – and the solution to a problem with big tents is to leave them. That makes the previous big tent smaller. It allows one to set up a smaller tent without the baggage associated with the previous big tent. And if that new tent becomes a new big tent – well deal with that problem of success when it happens.

            The problem with the LP is that it has a slew of people (read anarchos) wandering around arguing about whether ‘tent’ is a fatal compromise with the state and trying to disrupt/exclude people who actually want to focus purely on building another tent.

            1. Yes – and the solution to a problem with big tents is to leave them. That makes the previous big tent smaller. It allows one to set up a smaller tent without the baggage associated with the previous big tent. And if that new tent becomes a new big tent – well deal with that problem of success when it happens.

              So, drive people from a(n ideological) tent (or tents) en masse and, once your ideological tent gets too full, then decide how to adapt your ideology to larger tents?

              Sounds like it’s tents all the way down to me.

        4. The Tories are running England right now, sometimes Labour does.

          The CDU has been running Germany for quite some time

          And the GOP is running the US right now, sometimes its the Democrats.

          There are lots of other parties in most countries–including the US. In some other countries one party fails to get a majority, and thus must build a coalition–but this is far from optimum.

          But the fact is that every country is governed by one party at time–even coalitions have their dominant member.

          In the US, our process attempts to force everyone to the center–the place that kinda works for everyone. In other countries, there’s no push towards the center, and wide flung parties can maintain their odd stances in the hopes that they’ll get to implement them as part of the need to build a coalition. Which happens with surprising regularity and often disastrous results.

          1. That “force everyone to the center” idea has broken in the most profound manner over the last 5 presidential elections. Starting with Bush v Gore and up to Trump, well-funded ideological forces have created a centrifugal effect: spinning things to the edges, creating a void in the middle. No end in sight. End the madness of two-party duopoly!

            1. It is very focused on the center. With the exception of guns and immigrants, Clinton and Trump were indistinguishable.

    2. I completely agree that as long as libertarians try to achieve anything within the GOP they will achieve nothing. The term will be turned into whatever strawman the establishment/media/etc want to punch. They will carry all the baggage of the duopoly with them – and burden every other libertarian .

      But the Libertarian Party has got to get off the focus on national ideology/principles and identity and that other top-down exclusivist shit. Hell the Nolan Test (though very outdated) captures all the ‘ideology’ that’s needed.

      Build an actual party organization at the county level – and even the district level. Copy the D/R structure (whichever one is successful in your area). Talk to a PoliSci professor at a local uni and ask them about Local Politics 101. This ain’t rocket science – but it does require a core of people locally who are willing to do more than meet for drinks and bitch about the world outside Libertopia occasionally. Once the organization is there then it will be SEEN as the channel to get libertarian stuff done. If the LP leaves this stuff up to ‘candidates’ or their ‘campaigns’; then it all disappears every election and is owned by the CANDIDATE not the party. And 99% of candidates can’t really do this – which is why they join the D/R instead.

      Organizing around a mission of actually accomplishing something (even step 1 of just building the damn organization) is how you win. And for the LP that means start as small and local as can be accomplished.

      1. “I completely agree that as long as libertarians try to achieve anything within the GOP they will achieve nothing.”
        The likes of Paul, Massie, and Amash have accomplished more for libertarian ’causes’ in a few years (and done more to stand in the way of encroachments on individual freedom) than the LP has in its entire history.

        The LP may serve a purpose as a signal to the major parties as to the electoral viability of libertarian ideas, but it is never going to be a real force in national politics. Never. Trying to bring about another realignment is futile.

        1. Politics is about ideas. Just because you cannot see the progress of the Libertarian Party in terms of Congressional seats, does not mean that they have had no influence on public opinion.

          Of course realignment is futile, but with the growing popularity of both Greens and Libertarians, the coming decade is the best time that the United States has had since before World War I to force a multi-party system, which will benefit everyone in the long term.

          1. I am very skeptical of the conventional wisdom that the two major parties are losing ground. I don’t doubt that it’s becoming more fashionable to identify as independent, but I would argue that a higher fraction of the population (including most independents) fits neatly onto one party’s side or the other than in the 1950s or 1960s. A dyed in the wool Republican fitting in ideologically just fine with (and by some accounts, dominating) idealistic Democratic Kennedy Administration, that’s something that couldn’t happen today, IMO. Back then the parties had broader membership but also less ideological difference from each other.

            The third party performances in 2016 were, IMO, at most, the parties being slightly behind the times with their constituents. The Dems lost votes because they nominated a tough-on-crime warmonger, while the core of their base has moved against that; the party will adjust and go full SJW to respond to their base in good time, I expect. And while Trump’s populism may create a small opening for libertarians, I expect (pessimistically) that, party because of an increasingly radical Democratic party, this populist shift will simply drag more Republicans away from free market, libertarianish views than it will it will repel toward the LP.

            1. I agree that most independents likely lean to one side more than another, but that is only because most people do not see any other viable options so they feel stuck with the Democratic or Republican Party. The growing percentage of unaffiliated voters is a sign that additional parties are in demand if only our electoral laws would allow them to exist.

        2. The likes of Paul, Massie, and Amash have accomplished more for libertarian ’causes’ in a few years (and done more to stand in the way of encroachments on individual freedom) than the LP has in its entire history.

          I think the “’nuff said” argument is; Ron Paul got more electoral votes than Gary Johnson and he wasn’t even running.

      2. Some states have strong LP organizations. They still get 2 percent of the vote.
        Organization isn’t the problem, it’s inertia overcoming the 2-party system, and an ideology that few people understand.

        1. Can you name them? Seriously – I’d like to contact them to see what sorts of stuff I can copy for my county

  10. His chances have gone from 0% to 0%.

    1. Curb your enthusiasm

    2. His chances of getting a party nomination have gone way down.

  11. I am disappointed, but not terribly surprised. Missouri is a fairly red state. It’s just a lot easier to win with the Red Tribe than with any other tribe. All that’s left to see is if he will pretend to be a Trump clone or if he will actually forthrightly stand up for libertarian values and beliefs.

    1. Unlike libertarian purists like Gary Johnson. Haha. If he opposes socialized medicine he’s already more libertarian than the party’s senate nominees in Virginia and New Hampshire.

  12. …. Unless you’re into that. There’s nothing wrong with that if you are. Really.

    Vernon D,

    I don’t think that you intended this, yet your comment reminded me of video that contains rather odd lyrics (and an even odder reaction by the young women the lyrics were sung to).

  13. BYE FELICIA

    1. exactly, the only libertarian candidates running were Perry, McAfee, and Feldman

  14. Dear Libertarians,

    I decided I wanted to be a Senator more than a libertarian.

    It’s not you; it’s me.

    Love always,
    Austin

    1. You’re going to put on a Meg Ryan or Jennifer Aniston movie, slip into some PJs, cry yourself to the bottom of a bucket of ice cream tonight aren’t you?

  15. The libertarian party ran to leftist democratic candidates.

  16. What McCaskill did last time was to campaign for the Republican opponent she could actually beat (Todd Akins).

    It will be interesting to see which Republican she will do that for this time. The leading candidate that would have won the primary and completely stomped her has decided not to run. So it will be interesting. She might keep it yet.

  17. Anyhoo, the problem with him is going to be that Missouri might have voted for Trump, but it’s a pro-Union, pro-protectionism, socially conservative state.

    They likely won’t vote for a libertarian who is basically against everything they are for.

    1. Ah, that explains how they got McCaskill.

      1. Seriously. If he gets the nom, I think he could easily win. His moderately pro-life position, while obviously controversial among libertarians, could help him beat McCaskill alone.

        1. “Moderately” Pro-life is controversial among libertarians? No, only among Republicans posing as libertarians.

          What is “moderate” about forced pregnancy anyway?

          1. Um, no one forces you to become pregnant. You can not have sex. You can use contraception. Libertarians do not dismissively scoff at the notion that viable fetuses deserve protection. They allow individual choices tip the scale. In this political climate that’s arguably moderate.

            There’s at least one pro life writer in this very magazine. There was another but he or she’s not here anymore.

  18. I’ve always though that the notion of ‘party loyalty’ was a rather unlibertarian concept, so I don’t think there’s much credibility in Libertarians having a fit over someone leaving the party and joining another one. Principles, not principals, right? And its not like the LP candidates hold fast to libertarian principles anyway, so Petersen’s not exactly defacing the tabernacle or anything.

    1. The whole idea of libertarianism kinda teeters on this concept. The whole thing, IMO, kinda portrays libertarianism in the David Murphy (Woody Harrelson’s) role in Indecent Proposal. Which is exceedingly weird because the GOP is supposed to be the party of both evil, wife-buying billionaires and marriage-purist ideology.

  19. Never thought he was really “Libertarian” but whatevers. If he wins, maybe he starts off better than the typical elephant. Give it a few years and he’ll be just as bad.

  20. I’d rather see Libertarians getting elected as Republicans than Bloomberg-style “moderates” losing as Libertarians.

  21. good riddance

  22. representing Missouri seems punishment enough.

  23. Petersen is a clown. His high school AV Club conservative act is like nails on a chalkboard.

  24. Austin can’t win. He has no resume. He should start local, prove he can be a politican and actually change things. If he really wants to change things don’t waste time in us congress. Change the local and then state GOP. Run for their offices.

    1. So he was experienced enough to deliver the nomination to …Johnston?

  25. Best of luck to him, but why not start at a lower tier office, like House of Representatives, or state legislature? Being a medium fish in a tiny pond doesn’t qualify someone to go swimming with the sharks in the ocean.

  26. I’d give it a three for mostly correct grammar and spelling.

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  28. He’s a professional politician. He should do well with the establishment, probably where he belonged from the start.

    1. Precisely.

  29. Makes sense. Seems to me that that this is a natural,,,,, True the Republicans are more conservative on some Social issues but they only care locally about most of them, they are still faithful to the idea of Federalism and they Democrats are not…. So if you Reason Folks could join and change the Republicans,,,, it might be a good thing…

  30. Makes sense. Seems to me that that this is a natural,,,,, True the Republicans are more conservative on some Social issues but they only care locally about most of them, they are still faithful to the idea of Federalism and they Democrats are not…. So if you Reason Folks could join and change the Republicans,,,, it might be a good thing…

  31. Makes sense. Seems to me that that this is a natural,,,,, True the Republicans are more conservative on some Social issues but they only care locally about most of them, they are still faithful to the idea of Federalism and they Democrats are not…. So if you Reason Folks could join and change the Republicans,,,, it might be a good thing…

    1. Bullshit!

      Republicans are socially conservative and fiscally reckless. They blame the Democrats of “tax and spend,” and forget that they are worse: “borrow and spend.” Borrow to give the rich gubmint contracts and projects, while cutting their taxes and running up debts.

      Libertarians moving to the GOP are honest, unlike the cock holsters for the GOP posing reason.com libertarians.

  32. Makes sense. Seems to me that that this is a natural,,,,, True the Republicans are more conservative on some Social issues but they only care locally about most of them, they are still faithful to the idea of Federalism and they Democrats are not…. So if you Reason Folks could join and change the Republicans,,,, it might be a good thing…

  33. I don’t see why this has to be an either-or proposition. I thought the whole ideal of thoughtful libertarianisn was you looked at situations on an event-by-event basis, and responded *as appropriate* for each specific situation? Only Sith (or Republicans and Democrats) deal in absolutes.
    Attacking from only one angle will guarantee failure overall. Instead, we should be approaching every campaign, every political seat from the tack that best fits that particular campaign. Here is one that will work best with Peterson as a Republitard. The Presidential election was best approached as a Libertarian ticket.
    Of course, the failure of thoughtful action is why I quit the NY LP (and eventually the US LP) anyway.

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