Their message is simple: Vote Libertarian. Inspired by the trending "Trump Girls" who "broke the internet" this week, a bevy of liberty-minded women have been snapping and sharing selfies that support peace, freedom, and the Libertarian Party presidential ticket. These "babes of liberty"—that's the name you can find them under on Twitter and Instagram—join a growing number of Gary Johnson and William Weld supporters across the country.
As Brian Doherty noted here yesterday, Johnson is polling well for a third-party candidate in many key battleground states. In a three-way match between Johnson, Hillary Clinton, and Donald Trump, Johnson pulled 11 percent. His appeal was strongest among younger voters—22 percent of millennials favored Johnson, just shy of the 24 percent who were Trump supporters—and not dependent on gender or marital status. Eight percent of married female respondents said they would vote for Johnson, and 10 percent of unmarried female respondents said so. Among unmarried white women, Johnson's support was at 13 percent.
To spread the love for Johnson and other LP candidates, New Yorker Rachel Maisonet this week invited more than 200 women (and a few men) into a private Facebook group for "Lovely Liberty Ladies," urging them to take a photo of themselves promoting libertarianism. By Friday, group members had pitched-in to launch "Babes of Liberty" accounts on social media—the Twitter account has more 1,000 followers already—and were avidly sharing bios, beliefs, and boob shots with one another on Facebook. Both the racks and the resumes were impressive.
If the goal is to garner #TrumpGirlsBreakTheInternet-level attention, the Babes of Liberty may have a ways to go. But if bringing together a bunch of bold, smart, and passionate libertarian women from around the U.S. was Maisonet's goal, she's already succeeded beautifully. Below, Maisonet and other "lovely liberty ladies" talk to me about why they plan to vote for LP candidates this November.
Photo Credit: Susan Bee/Facebook
« Prev | Next »
"I support libertarianism because the only way to allow all individuals the freedom to pursue life Liberty, and happiness equally is to leave them alone," says Laura Meyers, a Kansas resident and editor-in-chief of the website Liberty Viral. Meyers also launched and maintains the @BabesofLiberty Twitter and Instagram accounts, with help from Reseth Oberg.
Credit: Laura Meyers
"Governor Veto is the man for the job," says Reseth Oberg, 29, a photographer who runs her own business from Omaha, Nebraska, where she lives with her husband and two sons. Oberg plans to vote for Gary Johnson in November "because ending Nixon's trillion dollar, failed war on drugs is extremely important to me," she says. "We need to decriminalize drugs so people can get help, instead of having their lives destroyed with a record." Ending the drug war "will do more to secure our borders than any other proposed measure," she adds. And Oberg, whose husband is in the military, also believes "our military interventions need to end. It's clear that the world is more dangerous because we've destabilized countries, and allowed ISIS to take over."
Credit: Reseth Oberg
Rachel Maisonet, 31, lives in Syracuse, New York, with her husband and two kids and is active with her local Libertarian Party. "I'm voting Libertarian because I'm sick of the two party system screwing us over," she says.
Credit: Rachel Maisonet (@rachelmaisonet)
"Who said liberty was just for white men?" writes Zuri Davis, a politics writer for 'Rare' who lives in Washington, D.C. "Pro-life, pro-liberty, pro-private property."
Credit: Zuri Davis
Christina Preston lives in Florida, where she's active with the Libertarian Party of Pinellas County. She says that one of the main reasons she supports Gary Johnson is that she doesn't want her children "living in perpetual states of war."
Credit: Christina Preston
Brya Walton is a student at Iowa State University, where she serves as President of Students for Gary Johnson. "I support Gary Johnson for President because lack of fiscal responsibility is likely the biggest problem our government has right now, and it is largely ignored by most politicians in Washington while things that should be non-issues for a lawmaking body get blown out of proportion," Walton says. "As President, I believe Governor Johnson would bring an attitude of responsibility to the White House. Governor Johnson would push for congress to end wasteful government and military spending, as well as make efforts to reduce government involvement in private business to boost economic growth and create jobs for Americans."
Credit: Brya Walton
Susan Bee lives with her husband and three kids in San Diego. "I'm libertarian because you can't micro manage 300 million people," says Bee. "Americans need to be free."
Credit: Susan Bee
Jocelyn Joel, 34,lives in Des Moines with her husband and children and is running for a seat in the Iowa House of Representatives as a Libertarian. "I not only vote libertarian but I run for office as one because I know that the people and our Constitution are supposed to be in charge," Joel says. "I believe I can represent an underserved group of folks like myself, who deserve liberty and justice, even if we can't buy it."
Credit: Jocelyn Joel
"I support libertarianism because it is a philosophy that fosters individualism, supports free thought, and enables maximum freedom for all without the initiation of force," says Robyn Lombardi, 34, who lives in Overland Park, Kansas, with her husband and daughter. "The main reason I'm supporting [Gary Johnson] is to support the LP and libertarian ideas," she says. "But I believe him to be a genuinely nice man, with a good grasp on what is needed to infuse more libertarianism into today's political climate. His experience on the executive level is definitely a plus, and the fact that he is a two term governor is a testament to his success."
Credit: Robyn Lombardi
"I'm voting Libertarian because the two party system is broken," says Lindsay Schmidt, 33, a resident of Hays, Kansas. Schmidt was a Rand Paul supporter, then an Austin Peterson supporter; she now supports Gary Johnson.
Credit: Lindsay Schmidt
"I vote libertarian because I believe in defending and preserving our constitutional rights," says Tara Carstetter.
Credit: Tara Carstetter
"I believe all interactions should be voluntary," says Chattanooga, Tennessee, resident Cassie Wittler. "That is why I support libertarian philosophy."
Credit: Cassie Wittler
"I'm libertarian because my daughters deserve me to do my best to make their world the best I possibly can," says Liz Scripter. Scripter lives in Texas, where she' owns the Heirloom Customs screenprinting shop, is a representative with the Libertarian Party of Texas, and serves as chair of the Tarrant County Libertarian Party.
Credit: Liz Scripter
"I am a Libertarian because no one can take care of me better than I can," says Cathy Smith, 32, of Colorado Springs. "I've hated being told what to do since I was a child and I grew up knowing that the decisions I make in life are mine to own, for better or for worse."
Credit: Cathy Smith
"I'm libertarian because it's the only political ideology that permits me the freedom to ingest, consume, smoke, imbibe, pierce, tattoo, adorn, and dress my body however I see fit," says Kimberly Ruff, 36, a project manager and Libertarian Party activist in Phoenix, Arizona.
Credit: Kimberly Ruff
"I believe that government intervention and regulation stifle economic growth and personal ingenuity," says Elizabeth McDonnell, owner of BronzeTouch Tanning Salon in Wichita Falls, Texas, and a a rep with the Libertarian Party of Texas. "I am a Libertarian because the LP recognizes the path to true individual freedom and success."
Credit: Elizabeth McDonnell
Darlene L. Underwood lives in Florida, where she is Secretary as well as Communications & Membership committee chair of her county Libertarian Party. She's also a representative with the Libertarian Party of Florida. "I grew up in a conservative, Christian, Republican home," says Underwood, and "in my personal life, I am probably more conservative. However, I began to realize that voting candidates into office who will make laws in my favor takes away someone else's individual liberties and increases the size and power of the government." Underwood's first choice for the Libertarian Party presidential ticket was Austin Petersen, but she's gotten behind Gary Johnson as the nominee since the LP convention. "I easily support him as a candidate over the Republican and Democrat nominees," she says. "It is my desire and goal to help the Libertarian Party grow, and supporting Gary Johnson is part of that." As part of her outreach with local libertarians, Underwood has been handing out Johnson campaign literature around her region. "Our country has been part of the two party system for so long that most people don't realize that voting for the Libertarian Party candidate is indeed a viable and intelligent option," she tells me. "It's my goal to get that information to my community and state."
Credit: Darlene L. Underwood
"I'm a libertarian because I don't care what you want to do, as long as you leave me alone and respect my freedoms," says Ivy Ames. "I believe in the power of the free market and don't need a nanny state to protect me from myself."
Credit: Ivy Ames
"I support libertarianism because I respect liberty, freedom, and each person's right to be left alone by the government," says Kelly Anderson, 46, a dental hygienist in Illinois. "Taxation is theft."
Credit: Kelly Anderson
"I vote Libertarian for my children's future and mine," says Leanna Williams, 31, of Dunbar, West Virginia. "We want stability."
Credit: Leanna Williams
"I support LP because I'm a parental rights activist and the state doesn't own my children," says Michelle Taff Schneider, legislative outreach coordinator at Texans For Vaccine Choice.
Credit: Michelle Taff Schneider
« Prev | Next »