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Shock Poll: Gary Johnson at 21% in Senate Race, Nearly Twice as Much as GOP Nominee

More New Mexico Republicans favor the Libertarian than their own candidate for U.S. Senate.

||| Adolphe Pierre-Louis/ZUMA Press/NewscomAdolphe Pierre-Louis/ZUMA Press/NewscomThis morning brought the first three-way poll since former New Mexico governor and Libertarian Party presidential candidate Gary Johnson officially announced his candidacy for U.S. Senate last week. And boy, is it a doozy: 39 percent for Democratic incumbent and frontrunner Martin Heinrich, 21 percent for Johnson, and just 11 percent for Republican nominee Mick Rich, according to an August 17–18 Emerson College e-poll of 500 registered voters.

That 21 percent figure, coming as it does before any real campaigning has begun, would mark the second-highest vote total of any Libertarian candidate for U.S. Senate in the party's 47-year history. (Alaska's Joe Miller, a Tea Party guy, received 29 percent in 2016.) Also, an unusually large 30 percent of respondents said they were undecided, perhaps not surprising in a race that until last month showed little interest.

The news for Rich is even worse on second glance: More Republicans in the survey favored Johnson, 27 percent to Rich's 25 percent. And the Libertarian clobbers the Republican among both Democrats (13 percent to 3 percent, with Heinrich getting 60) and independents (25 percent to 7 percent, with Heinrich at 32). Registered Democrats in New Mexico outnumber Republicans, unaffiliateds, and Libertarians by a ratio of 46 to 28 to 24 to 1.

Rich did better in the two three-way polls conducted by his opponents before Johnson's official entry. A Heinrich-backed GBA Strategies poll of 800 likely voters, conducted August 1–5, showed it 49-27-22 for Heinrich-Rich-Johnson, and a July poll conducted by Ron Nielson of 500 registered voters had it at 37-25-24. FiveThirtyEight gives Emerson College a B+ pollster rating, as opposed to GBA's B. (Nielson's NSON Opinion Strategy is not rated, as far as I can tell.)

If the findings from today are replicated by non-push polls going forward, that means that non-Democrats who subscribe to the "spoiler" view of two-party elections (which I don't, for what it's worth) will have a hard time not concluding that the spoiler in this election is Mick Rich.

The Republican has shown zero sign of withdrawing thus far. "What a crazy, wacky world we live in," Rich told the Santa Fe New Mexican last week, declaring that Johnson is "more in sync with [Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders] than he is with Republicans."

National Democrats, meanwhile, have been painting the Libertarian as a dangerous, kooky extremist. Johnson, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) tweeted Friday, has "supported abolishing the minimum wage, raising the Social Security retirement age, & gutting health care." Added Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.): "We can't afford to...let Gary Johnson take New Mexico backward at the expense of working families."

Bonus links: I interviewed Johnson last week, and Ron Nielson the week before that.

Photo Credit: Adolphe Pierre-Louis/ZUMA Press/Newscom

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  • John||

    The prize for second place is the same as it is for third.

  • Don't look at me.||

    A participation trophy.

  • Just Say'n||

    Of all people, you should be most pleased by this, John. This will force Democrats to divert resources to prop-up their nominee in a State that they thought they were going to win for sure. If the Republican drops-out, the DNC will be in full-on panic mode

  • John||

    Maybe but I doubt it. Johnson still isn't anywhere near close to the Democrat.

  • Just Say'n||

    You're just upset that he doesn't have an (R) after his name

  • Fancylad||

    I'm upset that he's a statist wearing a libertarian skin suit.

  • James Anderson Merritt||

    Even if we say you are right for sake of argument, do you really believe that President Gary Johnson wouldn't be moving the country in a substantially more libertarian direction than Hillary would have done or Trump is doing? Do you really believe that Senator Gary Johnson won't take criticism from Demos and GOP for being too libertarian (much more than they would ever be, at least)? Finally, if Johnson wins, won't that make it all the more easy for "purer" Libertarians to win higher office? I think so.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Trump is moving the USA in a very Libertarian direction. More than GJ could have done probably. GJ would have Republicans and democrats refuse to work with him and there are anarchists and Left in the LP that Johnson might have installed in govenrment. Those people would not be good for moving the USA toward libertarianism.

  • BillEverman||

    There is a difference between "libertarian" and "Mad Max anarchist wasteland." But seriously, Trump has gotten a few things right from the libertarian perspective, but a lot of other things wrong.

  • Jickerson||

    Trump is moving the USA in a very Libertarian direction.

    He's continued the unconstitutional wars of aggression overseas, NSA's mass surveillance, TSA, drug war, civil asset forfeiture program, gitmo, invasive border search practices, and so on. It's not just the new things that a president does that matter, but what practices from past administrations they choose to continue/ignore. I'm far more worried about the police surveillance state forming around us than I am thankful to Trump for a few regulations he got rid of; it's not even close.

    And yes, you can blame Trump for these things, because although he couldn't end them all unilaterally, he sure as hell could speak vehemently against them. He could, however, unilaterally pardon Edward Snowden and a number of other people who did nothing wrong; that actually is within his power.

    Also, no amount of 'Not as bad as Hillary!' fallacies will change the fact that Trump is incredibly authoritarian. Give it up.

  • Jerry B.||

    "He's continued the unconstitutional wars of aggression overseas, NSA's mass surveillance, TSA, drug war, civil asset forfeiture program, gitmo, invasive border search practices, and so on."

    So are we talking about Trump, or Obama?

  • Jickerson||

    Both.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Gorsuch
    Nominated over 73 federal judges
    2 for 1 EO repeal
    Federal Gov rollback
    Back out of Paris accord
    Rollback EPA rules
    Rollback Obama rules
    Rollback ObamaCare mandate
    Reform VA
    Tax cuts
    lowest black-American unemployment in over 60 years
    lowest American unemployment in over 60 years
    Back out of TPP
    Pressure trading partners for free trade
    Enforce immigration laws
    Travel ban
    North Korea meeting for peace

    You're right though, Trump should end the following Boosh and Obama unconstitutional government programs: NSA surveillance; Gitmo; asset forfeiture; drug war; endless wars in Iraq, Syria, and Afghanistan.

  • AReasonableMan||

    "Pressure trading partners for free trade" is a very generous way of describing horrible tariffs.

    And, the next two items (Enforce immigration laws, and Travel Ban) aren't at all libertarian, either.

  • bct2000||

    I find it puzzling that anyone could remotely think of Trump as libertarian. Look at who he is most comfortable with-authoritarian dictators like Putin and Jong-Un. Look at who he surrounds himself with - Jeff Sessions as AG, someone who wants to exacerbate the War on Drugs. Rick Perry as Secretary of Energy, a notoriously corrupt Texas governor who curried favor with the religious right to use government to enforce an ideology on others. Just being "better than Hillary" is not enough. This "lesser of two evils" mentality is something we must stamp out if we are to make real progress toward liberty.

  • Michael Cox||

    @LC1789 Are you sober? Trump? Very libertarian?
    Trade wars? Immigration scares? Moar militariz!?! Needz paradez!

  • Oli||

    lol! No, Trump isn't "moving the USA in a very Libertarian direction". If you seriously believe this to be true, you should do some very basic reading on classical liberalism and libertarianism.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    The USA was most socialist pre-Trump than it currently is with Trump as president.

    Most of the work Congress has to do and they wont. Democrats and RINOs in Congress refuse to rollback the Nanny and Police State.

  • John Galt Jr||

    SEIG HEIL

  • soflarider||

    "Trump is moving the USA in a very Libertarian direction."

    The simple fact that we're not all mandated to bake Nazi cakes proves that your claim is undeniably correct.

  • Scarecrow Repair & Chippering||

    So he should just quite while he's behind. Got it.

  • John||

    Where did I say he should quit? He can run all he likes.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    GayJay should make a deal to caucus with the republicans in exchange for their candidate dropping out and throwing support behind him.

  • Happy Chandler||

    New Mexico is one of the cheapest markets in the country.

    There will be no panic.

    Would Johnson caucus with a major party?

  • Just Say'n||

    If he caucuses with your buddies there's going to be a lot of "I told you so"s from the John's of the world.

  • Nardz||

    Happy is what you call a useful idiot.
    He doesn't have buddies, he has lords and masters

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    He is a good drone for his democrat masters.

  • JFree||

    He should caucus with whoever offers the most for New Mexico. Let's see how competition works - when the DeRps themselves can no longer take THAT for granted. Purely mercenary - and the reward for New Mexicans for voting for free markets.

  • JFree||

    For that matter - GJ could throw that decision about who to caucus with to New Mexicans to give them a stake in it and thus his candidacy.

    What parts of the fed govt do they most want to reform? What parts of it do they want to make sure doesn't tread on NM? The DeRp candidates can't really touch that because DeRps have to do what their senior DeRps make them do.

  • CE||

    He's a former governor with a good record in office. He doesn't need to advertise. Most people don't really care about labels, and the LP platform doesn't seem that loony any more. Plus they know he's really a moderate Republican.

  • Bob Meyer||

    The Republican will drop out and throw his support to the Democrat just as it happened in New York's 23
    District a few years back. Republicans and Democrats agree -- NO THIRD PARTIES!

  • Sometimes a Great Notion||

    Not necessarily true. Not sure about NM but in MD getting so many votes keeps your party on the ballot for the next go around. So when Johnson got something like 3.5% of the total vote for president in Maryland he secured ballot access for the LP for next election. Seeing the cost of getting on the ballot diverts resources from campaign marketing this is important.

  • Hank Phillips||

    In 1973 that third-place prize was the Roe v. Wade decision. It's still there, and has spread into Canada and most relatively civilized nations. Hospers and Nathan's LP completely changed jurisprudence and enforced the individual rights of women with fewer than 4000 votes.

  • Kyfho Myoba||

    Do you have ANY evidence of this?

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    Hey Hank, you do understand the Roe V. Wade is unconstitutional, right? I( suppose all you care about is all the babies you and your friends have murdered.

  • ||

    I must have missed the section on how a supreme court ruling that's never been overturned can be unconstitutional in civics class. Now, you're a person on the internet so I'm sure your statement is based on a clear and profound understanding of the document you're citing, so can you please just enlighten me on where exactly the constitution supports the statement you're making?

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    Simple. Roe V. Wade presumes federal authority over abortion. This is not part of the deferral government's enumerated powers, therefore not within the authority of the federal government. Per the tenth amendment, aborton should be dealt with at the state level.

    Not complicated, and there is a shit ton of in depth writing o the subject. And just because the SCOTUS ruled on something doesn't mean they were correct. After all, by your logic, slavery was constitutional at one point.

    I may be 'a person on the internet', but my logic is correct, as is my argument.

  • Humaphobia||

    It's constitutional, unless you don't believe stare decisis or fourteenth amendment incorporation is constitutional, in which case you have a different definition of "constitutional" versus the rest of the legal world. Fourteenth Amendment jurisprudence has led to selective incorporation of a variety of rights, to include privacy in Griswold, and privacy as it explicitly applied to abortion via Roe. You can't have your cake and eat it too with common law. The constitution of 1790 isn't what we have today, and you can't snapshot certain parts to fit your desired narrative. You can oppose it ideologically, but claiming unconstitutionality abuses the term.

  • tlapp||

    A shame he did not enter earlier and have a chance to close the gap and get more funding.

  • BYODB||

    Well, it certainly seems that the Republicans will have a valid case this time around that Johnson ensured a Democrat win. Not that there's necessarily anything wrong with that, and hell maybe GJ can actually win in New Mexico. All ten of the people in the State must know who he is, right? ^_-


    I kid, I kid. Best of luck to him, but I'm not holding my breath.

  • John||

    If Johnson beats the Republican and the two combined beat the Democrat, what do you want to bet Reason will whine up a storm about how the Republicans should have gotten on the Johnson train. Apparently, you don't owe anyone your vote, unless that person is a Libertarian or something.

  • Eddy||

    I have a hard time being outraged at what Reason *might* say at some future date. So far they're just exploiting what they see as flaws in the "spoiler vote!" logic.

  • John||

    If you buy reason's position that there is no such thing as a "spoiler vote", then what difference does it make if Johnson gets more than the Republican if he still loses anyway?

  • Eddy||

    I actually believe in the "spoiler vote!" scare tactic more than Reason does, though it's not an insuperable objection in all cases.

  • Just Say'n||

    It is ironic that some LP people are suggesting that the Republican is the spoiler this time around. The myth of the "spoiler" will forever live on, except now third parties are getting in on the act too.

  • Mickey Rat||

    Political parties are political parties. Major parties act and speak they way they do because that is what tactically benefits them. Third parties act they because that is what benefits them.

    If you think that there is a principle involved in any procedural partisan rhetoric, you are far too idealistic for this world.

  • Just Say'n||

    Shorter response: LP needs to change its tag line from "The Party of Principles" to "everything within the party, nothing outside the party"

  • Cynical Asshole||

    "everything within the party, nothing outside the party"

    That' could be every political party's motto.

  • Just Say'n||

    True. But, I don't think other parties advertise themselves as putting principles first.

  • CE||

    Except the Communists.

  • CE||

    Big tent, more liberty, lower taxes. It's politics, not Lew Rockwell.

  • BYODB||

    Johnson would be far more useful in the Senate than anywhere else. And he's more likely to win in New Mexico than anywhere else. Mostly because they're the only people who know who he is AND who take him semi-seriously. The fact that with all those things going for him he's still outpolled by the Democrat says quite a bit, I think, but at the same time this poll is a joke so...it's all basically reading tea leaves at this point.

  • John||

    I suspect he would be the worst sort of turncoat in the Senate who would vote the right way right up until it mattered. Would he be marginally better than the Democrat? Probably. But I can understand why Republicans won't vote for him.

  • Mithrandir||

    Gary has his flaws, but he would be 1,000,000% better than almost every single current standing senator (not a huge bar to hurdle, to be fair).

  • Just Say'n||

    I doubt he'd be better than Rand

  • Mithrandir||

    Rand is the reason I said almost!

  • EscherEnigma||

    Doesn't Rand "vote the right way right up until it [matters]"?

  • LynchPin1477||

    Eh, I've been very lukewarm on Rand since he dropped out of the election. He still has moments but I'm not nearly as enthusiastic as I was. I hope GJ would be better, by a wide margin.

  • Just Say'n||

    If you think Gary Johnson is going to be more principled than Rand Paul you are setting yourself up for a monumentally epic fail

  • LynchPin1477||

    I'm just not so impressed with Rand Paul's principles these days, at least relative to the enthusiasm I used to have. I still think he's better than most Republicans. But I agree with GJ on probably 90% of things.

  • ||

    But I agree with GJ on probably 90% of things.

    Me, too - in 2016 I took the ISideWith.com survey and was in agreement with Johnson's stated positions over 90% of the time.

    At the very, very bottom (out of all 20 or so candidates in the primaries) were HRC and Chris Christie.

    On a side note, I've never seen such blank looks from partisans of either stripe when I point out that Chris Christie and HRC are similar enough in outlook to have been side-by-side at the bottom of my list.

  • Just Say'n||

    Let's be honest here, you support Gary's part identification and that's what you oppose about Rand. Gary endorsed a burka ban, forced inoculation, and a carbon tax, before he reversed course on all positions.

    Principled is not how I would describe Gary.

  • Just Say'n||

    I can be fair to Gary, but it's laughable to think he'd ever behave more principled than Rand

  • Fancylad||

    This

  • LynchPin1477||

    I'm not sure what you mean by part identification. I agree with him on lots of policies. Burka ban is shit, a carbon tax is one of the less harmful ways that the government can deal with climate change (but let's not get into that right here), and forced inoculation is something I think libertarians can disagree about in good faith. But I'll readily admit that if he were to make it to the Senate and then ended up flip flopping all over the place, I'd be upset.

  • Scarecrow Repair & Chippering||

    WTF is wrong with you? Why are you so damned determined to say everything you can against Gary Johnson, even when he could do something useful and probably be better than 99% of the existing crowd?

    What a fucking loser you are. You'll have some credibility when you do half as much as GJ has done.

  • John||

    GJ hasn't done shit except run two irrelevant Presidential campaigns and make Libertarianism stand for gun control and forcing people to bake gay wedding cakes. If you want ot vote for him, good for you. But I don't see why any Republican would consider that he is totally pro open borders and doesn't really give a shit about religious freedom or gun rights. What is Johnson going to do for me other than tell me to give up my guns and how fabulous open borders and gay marriage is?

    I would just not vote if the only choice was Johnson or the Democrat. You assholes don't own my vote. If Johnson is all you can do, then fuck you you are not getting it.

  • soflarider||

    Wasn't there a governor named Gary Johnson? I wonder if he's related to this Gary Johnson? You know, the one who "hasn't done shit"".

  • loveconstitution1789||

    At this point GJ has to make up for a lot and has a lot to prove.

    If he wins the senate seat and asserts actual libertarian positions, then good for him and all libertarians.

    If GJ sides with Lefties or wants force balers to bake cakes, then fuck him amd he's dead to me.

  • CE||

    But I can understand why Republicans won't vote for him.

    Yeah, because he might not vote to bomb everyone.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    He might also vote to make people bake gay cakes against their will too.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Exactly. Instead of being a spoiler, Johnson should drop out and give Rich a chance!

  • John||

    No one is a spoiler. Johnson should figure out a way to get Rich's voters to vote for him. I wouldn't vote for Johnson. What is the point? I would rather have an honest Democrat than one who pretends to be a Libertarian.

  • Just Say'n||

    You're suggesting that Johnson's squishy principles is less attractive than someone who would vote in favor of Warren's bill to seize the means of production?

    That's nuts

  • John||

    I am suggesting that I am not voting for someone I don't like. It is not my responsibility to stop the Democrats. You don't own my vote.

  • Fancylad||

    It is not my responsibility to stop the Democrats.
    Yeah, why on earth would a Democrat want to stop the DNC?

  • tlapp||

    Exactly, throwing someone out because they don't perfectly match your views vs. the alternative that is completely opposed to individual and economic freedom is just plain stupidity.

  • Hank Phillips||

    Spoiler votes force the looters to repeal bad laws and clean up their platforms. They pack 6 to 4000 times the clout because there is no mistaking the clear message.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    Hank, you are the last person to be talking about clear messages.

  • Just Say'n||

    "Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) tweeted Friday, has "supported abolishing the minimum wage, raising the Social Security retirement age, & gutting health care."

    I saw that I thought "Alright, Gary" and then, of course, Gary tweeted that Warren misconstrued his positions and then I remembered that this ("declaring that Johnson is "more in sync with [Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders]") is not really that far off base, because Johnson doesn't really believe in anything and when pushed will default to the least controversial position.

    Essentially there are two varieties of Republican on the ballot in New Mexico against a Democrat.

  • Just Say'n||

    Your choice is a Rockefeller Republican or a Trump-curious Republican

  • ||

    Bake the cake bitch?

  • Just Say'n||

    Honestly, that and marijuana legalization are the only two issues that he's been consistent on

  • Happy Chandler||

    Fry the bread!

  • ||

    Johnson has consistently supported abolishing the minimum wage and raising the Social Security and retirement age, which are pretty either/or sorts of things.

    It seems kind of obvious that the "misconstrued his positions" part would refer to "gutting health care," which is a very, very common and deliberate misconstrual of libertarian positions on healthcare.

  • Just Say'n||

    I hope you're right. I hold out hope for him, but he changes his positions frequently.

  • ||

    I've found him to be generally consistent, if squishy. He avoids specifics where he thinks he may be in unsympathetic territory, which comes off as lacking conviction. In 2016 Peterson and McAfee were brimming with conviction, but weren't good at nuance and would have alienated people.

    I am concerned, though, that when faced with an actual vote in the Senate his drive to be uncontroversial may overcome his principles.

  • Just Say'n||

    "I am concerned, though, that when faced with an actual vote in the Senate his drive to be uncontroversial may overcome his principles."

    I'm so concerned about that that if he were elected I would bet money that this scenario would come to fruition more often than not. The worst part is that people within the LP enable this abandonment of principle so long as they have a viable candidate.

    Nonetheless, as it stands now he's better than his two opponents

  • ||

    Nonetheless, as it stands now he's better than his two opponents

    No doubt about that - even if he does turn out to be too weak in the knees to be any good, it's still incremental progress in the right direction if he were to win.

  • BYODB||

    AND he could actually burnish his political resume for another, perhaps more serious, bid for President at some later date.

  • CE||

    Anyone with an ounce of common sense supports abolishing the minimum wage.
    Anyone with an ounce of mathematical ability knows SS needs major changes to survive.

    "Gutting health care" is just Dem speak for "trusting market solutions over government ones".

  • Eddy||

    It's not a good political race
    If your Johnson is in second place.

  • Eddy||

    REJECTED ALTERNATE JOKE: "The Heinrich Maneuver will save New Mexico from choking on Johnson."

  • Fancylad||

    Golf clap.

  • Mongo||

    Confucius say: "Johnson who touch electric fence shock poll."

  • Mongo||

    Confucius say: "Man with dull name gets called 'Gay-Jay'."

  • Matthew Chalice||

    Does this mean he'll end up with 2.1% of the final vote?

    In all seriousness, if Johnson were to run on a pro-life platform, he might be able to win over some Republicans who would otherwise vote for...the Republican, and I would consider voting for him if he were to do that. Otherwise, no.

  • ||

    if Johnson were to run on a pro-life platform . . . I would consider voting for him . . . Otherwise, no.

    Yay single issue voters!

  • Just Say'n||

    To be fair, there are some libertarians who could never support Ron Paul, because he was pro-life. So there are a lot of single-issue people on that topic.

  • ||

    I wasn't picking on one side or the other - just single-issue voters generally. I also find it annoying when people say "well, I would vote for that guy I agree with in every way except he's pro-life, so I guess I have to vote for Hitler!"

  • Just Say'n||

    Yeah. Agreed

  • Fancylad||

    Hitler did like abortions. Willing or coerced he was a big fan... unless you were nordic.

  • Vaelyn||

    Where is SIV, anyway?

  • CE||

    Because the NM Senator will totally decide the issue.

  • David Nolan||

    He's not part of the pro-life Taliban,. which is a small minority of voters, compared with over 60% who are libertarian (fiscally conservative and socially liberal) according to nio less than the Cato Institute,

  • Fancylad||

    pro-life Taliban
    Any relation to the gay Taliban, the fascist left or the Bushitlers?

  • David Nolan||

    pro-life Taliban

    Any relation to the gay Taliban, the fascist left or the Bushitlers?

    There is nio gay Taliban.
    PRECISELY equal to the fascist left!
    Which is WHY Left - Right = Zero.

  • Hank Phillips||

    Pointing service pistols at women and doctors is "pro life"?

  • David Nolan||

    Only to the Taliban.

  • Procyon Rotor||

    Hihn! I'm so glad you're bringing back the sock accounts. Are they all coming back? Are they here to stay? Oh god, you have no idea how happy that would make me. Needling your sock accounts is even more fun than needling the original. It might just be my fourth or fifth favorite hobby. I've missed them. I'm really looking forward to the return of Libertarian Newbie. That was my favorite one.

  • Procyon Rotor||

    Oh, I really should read the whole comment section before I start posting. I see three (count em!) of your smelly old socks on this page alone. David Nolan, Elilis Wyatt, and John Galt Jr. And do my eyes deceive me? Do I see another Galt handle on this page? Oh tell me Jgalt1975 is you. Tell me you've added yet another Galt to your stable. Please, please, pleeeease tell me you're that uncreative. You have made my day, and the sun's not even up yet.

  • Procyon Rotor||

    Alright, well... I regret to report that after doing some homework, I have every reason to believe that Jgalt1975 is not one of your socks. He's been posting here for years, and as far as I can tell, he's never displayed any of your tics. My bad. Still a good day.

  • John Galt Jr||

    The precious snowflake got triggered.
    FAILS to deal with a single issue.
    Cowardly,

  • Rock Lobster||

    MORE BOLD TYPE!!!, Hihn.

    Your fans demand it.

  • Procyon Rotor||

    Triggered? My dear good sir, I am overjoyed. Your sock accounts are like ponies on a carousel. What kind of carousel would it be with only one pony? A damn poor one, that's what kind.

  • Cynical Asshole||

    "What a crazy, wacky world we live in," Rich told the Santa Fe New Mexican last week, declaring that Johnson is "more in sync with [Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders] than he is with Republicans."

    National Democrats, meanwhile, have been painting the Libertarian as a dangerous, kooky extremist.

    You know you're doing something right when both parties are pissed off at you.

  • Eddy||

    That proves a bit too much, since I suspect both parties are pissed off at serial killers.

  • Nardz||

    And Comey

  • Paulpemb||

    That depends, is the serial killer an illegal immigrant?

  • Hank Phillips||

    I believe the Warrior-for-the-babies is referring to Canadian doctors in the practice of medicine. To them letting females have choices is "race suicide."

  • Texasmotiv||

    Take your hyperbolic trash somewhere else.

  • Elilis Wyatt||

    Precious snowflake got triggered?

  • Calidissident||

    I don't think Johnson has a chance, but it is interesting that instead of welcoming or at least ignoring the entry of a former Republican governor running on a Libertarian ticket into the race in what should be an easy re-election for the Democratic incumbent, national Democrats feel the need to lash out and attack him. Shows that Johnson does have some bipartisan appeal there, though at the end of the day it still seems likely he's going to pull more from Republicans since their candidate is much weaker. In the presidential election it seems like it was more even in New Mexico - Johnson got 6% of the vote from both Republicans and Democrats, and 16% from Independents. In terms of ideology, he got 6% of liberals, 7% of conservatives, and 14% of moderates.

  • Hank Phillips||

    The point of running on an integrity platform is to force the worst of the looters to lose, then let them pistol-whip their own platform committee (initiation of force). That this gets rid of bad laws is icing on the cake.

  • CE||

    Johnson doesn't run on an integrity platform though (except his personal integrity, which seems an outlier among politicians, from what we know).

    He runs as an independent who is for smaller government and more liberty (in most cases), who can take the best ideas from both sides (if there are any).

  • CE||

    The point of running for US Senate is to win, so you have one percent of the Senatorial power, multiplied 10 fold when the 2 established parties are evenly split and desperate for swing votes.

  • Cloudbuster||

    More New Mexico Republicans favor the Libertarian than their own candidate for U.S. Senate.

    Now I am confused. First you say they favor Gary Johnson, then you say they favor the Libertarian. Which is it?

  • David Nolan||

    How would you know?

  • MasterThief||

    Go figure. People who tend to be conservative and vote Republican tend to be more open to libertarian ideas and candidates. It's not like this is something that is obvious (in spite of Reason's editorial stance.)
    Honestly, when GJ announced I thought the R candidate should have dropped and the R's should have helped him. He misses on several issues but is more friend to them than the D's.

  • John Galt Jr||

    People who tend to be conservative and vote Republican tend to be more open to libertarian ideas and candidates.

    Not since the late '80s. Now the authoritarian right has driven the libertarian right to become Independents.

    Honestly, when GJ announced I thought the R candidate should have dropped and the R's should have helped him. He misses on several issues but is more friend to them than the D's.

    I'll add that to your ignorance of libertarians..

  • CE||

    Needz moar warz to get their support.

  • Happy Chandler||

    This would be an interesting test for Instant Runoff Voting.

  • LynchPin1477||

    Sweet. It would be great to see those numbers stick in the actual election. It would show off a true small-government alternative to Trump for those conservatives who still believe in that sort of thing.

    Join us!

  • EscherEnigma||

    Yeesh, the way y'all trash your own candidates, I don't think the Dems need to do anything.

  • ||

    Right?

  • BYODB||

    I've often commented that it's amusing to think that a group of rabid individualists could ever come together and form any kind of effective or threatening political party. Libertarians in general seem to really think there's a true Scotsman out there.

  • ||

    Anarchists of the world unite!

  • Kyfho Myoba||

    You have nothing to lose but your individuality!

  • CE||

    Libertarians are 0.5 percent of the voting public (and probably 5 percent of the non-voting public). We argue among ourselves as if it matters. There is a centrist opportunity/threat to use that LP ballot line for a presidential bid, and attract enough independent and conservative voters to mount a serious campaign. Bill Weld is eyeing that LP ballot line, but someone like say Mark Cuban could really do it, if the party gatekeepers let him in.

  • junyo||

    "How do you get two Libertarians to argue?"

    "Introduce them to each other."

    Bonus punchline:
    "Start a sentence with 'I'm sure we can all agree...'"

  • Hank Phillips||

    Those are Republican infiltrators who, for the price of a subscription, get to come in here in sockcloth and stink as though this were the Faecepuke at which they learned their manners.

  • The Last American Hero||

    What is Johnson's position on forcing a baker to bake a Pro-Drug War Cake for a DARE bake sale?

  • John B. Egan||

    I voted for Harry Browne after Bush Jr's disastrous first term in office.. I found him to be intellectual and intelligent... Why would the Libertarians follow up with a dimwit like Gary Johnson? Weren't you embarrassed enough when he was on TV and he and his running mate would punch each other's arms and all but skateboard around the sets yelling 'rad' and 'dude'? Seriously? What is Aleppo? Can't name a single foreign head of state? Didn't know who North Korea's Kim is? The guy is a moron... Is the Libertarian Party now trying to scrape the mentally deficient and dregs of the deplorables into a voting block? Wow!

  • John||

    Johnson is a pot, Mexicans, and ass sex libertarian. He has shown no commitment to any freedoms beyond those big three. If those are what you value, then I guess he is okay. If you value any other freedoms, not so much.

  • Kyfho Myoba||

    This is unfair. Johnson is an extreme fiscal conservative. He vetoed over 750 bills as governor. That's more than all the other 49 governors COMBINED. Say what you will about cakes and whatnot, I agree with you wholeheartedly, but the man is tight with a buck. He lowered taxes a number of times. NOBODY has been as effective as he was in fighting the growth of government during his two terms as governor.

  • Calidissident||

    Well technically they followed Browne up with Bob Barr.

  • Just Say'n||

    Yeah, Barr was a disgrace

  • Uncle Adolf's Gas and Grill||

    You forgot Michael Badnarik.

  • Jgalt1975||

    You're either ignorant or full of shit on the "can't name a single foreign head of state" issue -- the question was to name a foreign head of state that he admired, not just any random foreign head of state. The actual question is one that should be justifiably challenging to a Libertarian candidate.

  • David Nolan||

    Luckily for his odds here, Gary has never been in the anti-gummint wacko wing. And most NM voters know that.

  • Just Say'n||

    It's wacko to oppose government.

  • Sevo||

    That's that pathetic POS Hihn with a new sock, hoping to find someone who won't laugh at him.

  • Hank Phillips||

    Note to foreign readers: hyenas think yelping sounds like laughter

  • Sevo||

    "Note to foreign readers: hyenas think yelping sounds like laughter"

    Note to any readers: Hank is an imbecile who shows up from time to time and posts stuff like this.

  • David Nolan||

    It's wacko to oppose government.

    Yes, compared with pro-liberty.
    Pro-liberty vs anti-government is about priorities

    a) Expanding liberty always limits or reduces government.

    b) Shrinking government can be the OPPOSITE of expanding liberty. See Medicaid. Ready?
    Pre-Medicaid/Medicare, the free market OUTCOME was universal treatment, regardless age or income, delivered by Charity Hospitals, financed by thousands of churches, charities, fraternal orders and more.

    Pro-liberty transitions back to free-market OUTCOMES
    Anti-gummint goobers ... shrink government with the opposite of free market outcomes. Now THINK.

    1) Progressives CLAIM to provide what Americans have always been willing to pay for.
    2) Pro-liberty libs have a BETTER WAY to do what Americans have always been willing to pay for (and humans for 500 years)
    3) Anti-gummint goobers are, by definition, authoritarian. FUCK CONSENT OF THE GOVERNED and WILL OF THE PEOPLE.

    If there's only #1 and #3, progressives will continue kicking our ass ... which makes #3 the enemy, often treasonous.

    Anything else?

  • Sevo||

    Hihn, make yourself more valuable, and go die someplace.

  • Jr12||

    New LP election strategy, replace the Republican Party with the Libertarian Party, via election spoilers. New LP platform, same as the Republican platform, "we want the same agenda Democrats want, a welfare state and legal discrimination, but it'll be cheaper and less exploitative with us in charge." Cross our bleeding hearts.

  • Hank Phillips||

    Our 1972 plank still protects the individual rights of women in These States and Canada. So... how's that Warriors-For-The-Babies Amendment working out for God's Own Prohibitionists? It's been an anti-libertarian platform plank since 1976, right?

  • Sevo||

    Hank Phillips|8.20.18 @ 9:22PM|#
    "Our 1972 plank..."

    "Our"?
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4cly_2pGTNw

  • Elilis Wyatt||

    The Libertarian Party Platform, chump. https://www.lp.org/platform/

  • Sevo||

    Damn Repub spoilers! Why can't they stay out and quit getting D's elected?

  • RoninX||

    Johnson isn't perfect, and neither is Rand Paul, but they're a lot better than the other 98 Senators.

    Just having the LP win a Senate race would be a huge victory. And I know, the LP gets hit from all sides -- some people say they're too extreme and others say they've sold out -- but seriously, look at the alternatives. They're certainly better than the Dems and the GOP.

  • PCGUY||

    Viva Gary! This is exactly what we need in the Senate, a power fulcrum between the two failed parties. A libertarian leaning caucus to keep these turkeys in line. If you can't get behind Johnson's basic policy, then you need to lay off the blue and red kool-aid. And if you're here to bash Gary Johnson, I pity you. You are too scared or angry (and obviously ignorant) to do any real good, like scolding your own Senator for his/her misdeeds. It's time for accountability in Washington. Single issue and party line voting is just lazy.

  • JFree||

    This 100%

    I'm not at all surprised that the partisan 'small-l libertarian' DeRp hacks are out in force in this thread doing what they always do. They have been so used to controlling (and crapping on) the term 'libertarian' for so long that they don't even realize how much they have sold themselves out to their DeRp identity. The same thing happened to me for a couple decades as an R - without me even realizing it. Making excuses for all sorts of bad DeRp stuff - and rationalizing that as actually really libertarian after all. Just to deal with the cognitive dissonance of disagreeing with 70% of what the deRps DO while remaining registered with them.

    The only solution is to free ones mind. Reregister as unaffiliated and the cognitive dissonance will disappear almost overnight. No longer need to rationalize anything.

  • Hank Phillips||

    Since when is a Tea Party fascist libertarian?

  • Kyfho Myoba||

    Eat shit and die in a fire.

    Of ass cancer.

  • David Nolan||

    Diversion.
    Evasion.
    Punk.

  • Sevo||

    "Diversion.
    Evasion.
    Punk."

    Stupidity, stupidity, stupidity.
    Fuck off, you pathetic excuse for humanity.

  • Sevo||

    "Since when is a Tea Party fascist libertarian?"
    When did you ever make a comment that wasn't risible?
    Fuck off, asshole.

  • LeaveTrumpAloneLiberal-tarian||

    Very upsetting. My job as a libertarian is to vote for the Republican Party so that they can carry out the libertarian agenda. Any other vote is a vote for statist Democrats who will probably throw my liberty-loving ass into a gulag, where I can be gang raped by well-endowed Black men. And I don't want that!

  • David Nolan||

    If you were actually libertarian, you'd know what we've been saying for 50 years.

    Republicans want government out of your wallet and into your bedroom.
    Democrats want government out of your bedroom and into your wallet.
    ONLY libertarians DEFY government intrusion into BOTH economic and personal issues.

    A growing majority of Americans agree, and now SELF-define as fiscally conservative and socially liberal.
    That leaves the right and left with less than 40% combined. Your time has expired.

    Left - Right = Zero

  • Sevo||

    Fuck off, asshole.
    No one is fooled, you make no more sense hiding behind this sock than you did under the Hihn sock.
    Whoever you are, you are an ignoramus, you have made it clear you are, and there are few here of any politcal leanings who do not find your comments pathetic.
    Just fuck off;

  • David Nolan||

    He said, "If you were actually libertarian" ... but you're obviously authoritarian.

    And you proved him correct: Left - Right = Zero

  • Cory Crockett||

    That's fine. Just keep him away from the Red Bull. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vvULsrjLdI4

  • BillEverman||

    "Added Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.): 'We can't afford to...let Gary Johnson take New Mexico backward at the expense of working families.'"

    Maybe someone should explain to this seasoned giant of the Senate that Johnson is running for the U.S. Senate, not the New Mexico legislature. She might as well have said we can't afford to let him take North Dakota backward. It would make just as much sense.

  • WoodChipperBob||

    I'm glad to see that I wasn't the only one who noticed that.

  • Hank Phillips||

    God's Own Prohibitionists need to double down on an Amendment to overturn the LP's Suprema Corte Roe v. Wade decision, and have Beauregard order the DEA to shoot to kill in situations involving plant leaves. That'll show 'em!

  • LeaveTrumpAloneLiberal-tarian||

    Hank, come on. Priorities. Libertarians need to get behind Trump because he's going to appoint two dynamite libertarians to the SC. Just look at Kavanaugh. He's fantastic on everything and is a beacon of integrity. Just ask Ken Starr.

  • John Galt Jr||

    Kavanaugh and Gorsuch are both (presumably) Christian Taliban.
    Trumpsters are so eager to be manipulated.
    By a psycho fascist.

  • David Nolan||

    GREAT satire!

  • LeaveTrumpAloneLiberal-tarian||

    Satire? People around here keep saying that. Let me be clear: President Trump is definitely on par with Abraham Lincoln and may be the greatest political leader since Frederick the Great.

    Why is he so great you may ask? Well... First and foremost, it's his innate humility, but I would say his greatest talent is his ability to pick the most drama-free and least corrupt officials on the American political scene where— again because of his great humility— he let's them work free of his influence.

    Thank goodness we're done with the chaos and Greek-like anarchy of the Obama Administration. Whew! We almost lost this great country under him. Yeah, 78 months of private sector job growth will do that to a nation. I say: All hail President Trump and his giant cock!

  • David Nolan||

    BETTER SATIRE!

  • Sevo||

    "God's Own Prohibitionists need to double down on an Amendment to overturn the LP's Suprema Corte Roe v. Wade decision, and have Beauregard order the DEA to shoot to kill in situations involving plant leaves. That'll show 'em!"

    Hank's Mom should point out to Hank that posts are best accepted when they are understandable to those who don't suffer mental illnesses.
    Hank, STFU until you learn to post comments which don't require Agile to interpret.

  • handsoffmypineapples||

    Shouldn't the sub-headline be:

    "More New Mexico Republicans favor the former two-term Republican Governor of their state than the political newcomer who 'won' the uncontested GOP primary"?

    I mean... that seems like the obvious take-away.

  • Wise Old Fool||

    God I hope he wins. Maybe he can get Rand to mellow the fuck out.

  • RoninX||

    Regardless of who wins in November, the Senate is going to end up very close to 50-50.

    If Johnson wins, he and Rand Paul could hold the balance of power in the Senate. While they don't agree on everything (Johnson is pro-choice and Paul is pro-life), they could tip the scales towards liberty (or at least away from increased tyranny) on a lot of close votes.

  • JeremyR||

    It's 39 to 21 and people seriously think this is close?

  • vek||

    Well, but what if the R dropped out of the race... 33 to 30 with 30% undecided sounds a lot closer huh?

  • JFree||

    39(D) to 21(L) to 11(R) to 28 (undecided)

    Fact is - the undecideds do NOT tend to fall towards either the D's or R's. They tend to drop out and not vote - esp if its a close race with lots of ads (which are always going to be negative). With an L in the race - where their vote can actually be VERY important and determine the winner, they could easily fall more than 50% to Gary Johnson.

    If the D's do decide to go negative (always the default strategy for the DeRps) as the race gets closer, they have a big disadvantage. Because they can only go negative against the strawman of what they have been labelling libertarian. Most of which is actually Republican (Koch big money cronyism or the Paul's playing with neoconfederates/etc). Make that sort of strawman mistake with negative ads and it usually backfires on your own candidate. So the 39% can peel away a bit.

    As long as GJ appeals to pull independents into voting, he has an excellent chance

  • vek||

    I said it in the other recent articles about Gay Jay running for senate, but I will repeat here just in case the head of the RNC happens to read the Reason comments section:

    The GOP would be VERY smart to simply discontinue running people in these hyper leftist areas. They could cede the areas to Libertarians, and instead use their resources elsewhere in districts that are closer to 50/50 where they actually have a shot.

    In an area where it's 70%+ Dem voters, a Libertarian won't win either... But an area that is saaay 60/40 in Democrats favor... Or even a reliable 55/45... A line towing R basically has basically zero chance at winning... But a Libertarian just might be able to eek out a narrow victory.

    This would be an excellent strategy for conserving resources for where they can be put to better use, and it might just get them a few more votes the direction they want on economic issues, size/scope of government, etc.

  • David Nolan||

    The GOP would be VERY smart to simply discontinue running people in these hyper leftist areas.

    Johnson was elected governor as a Republican.
    Twice

  • vek||

    I am aware. However this was many years ago. As someone who was born in a California that voted for Ronald Reagan, then went back and forth in the 90s, and even with watered down Governator in the 2000s... There is zero chance that even a hyper moderate Republican could win there now. There are still R congressional seats outside the big cities, but the way state wide offices or federal offices are split up, they're a lost cause.

    As I understand it New Mexico has had much the same happen thanks to demographic changes. So it is basically lost to proper conservatives, but Libertarians might have a shot.

    As a mostly libertarian leaner I would have zero problem with Gay Jay stealing a seat from a Democrat.

  • Steve-O||

    I would agree, except that in reality I don't think that there really is any direction that the Republican establishment "wants" on economic issues or the size and scope of government. They couldn't give two shits about it. Their only goal is to get as many "R"s in office as possible, and they will do whatever they need to make that happen.

    On the other hand, they do need an agenda and accomplishments to run on, and reigning in government happens to play well with a lot of voters. If some Libertarians get into office and help them further that agenda, it might give them some accomplishments to crow about when trying to get more "R"s into office.

  • vek||

    I agree and disagree... Rs want to cut the size and scope of CERTAIN PARTS OF GOVERNMENT. I think rank and file R voters want damn near everything but the military and maybe social security cut... Elected officials not so much. However they would be perfectly fine with cutting welfare, the EPA, etc. Likewise with lower taxes, fewer regulations, etc.

    Libertarians could help with this. Throwing money away in unwinnable races isn't an effective strategy. The Rs literally don't run anybody for many offices here in Seattle/King County where I live... Which sadly, makes sense. However IMO they are still throwing money away in consistent 60/40 districts where they have no chance at winning either. Leaving those areas to the Libertarian Party would do well for both parties, and if the Ls actually won, liberty in general.

  • belle7s||

    Do you think the Republican voters will vote for the lesser of the two evils?

  • Anastasia Beaverhausen||

    Take your sharpie and make a mark on the wall right now... this will be his highest polling figure. He'll finish with around 7%.

  • texexpatriate||

    The trouble with this story is it attempts to draw conclusions based consideration of Party labels. For the story to have relevance the reader needs to know what the candidates are saying, and how they will vote when they reach the U.S. Congress. While we know how all Democrats will vote---they will vote exactly as their leadership tells them to vote---we don't know how the Libertarian will vote or the Republican will vote. Without knowing those things by reading the article, the article is meaningless.

  • Duelles||

    Heinrich is not worthy. He's moving closer to Bernie, perhaps feeling comfortable now showing his true feelings on socialist policies. Of course, he ducks the issue of fracking in a poor state whose most important source of jobs and revenue is from the oil and gas industry. He can speak out on poor education since the governor is a Republican, and yet he's been in NM politics long enough to have had an effect. . . Which is negligible! What finger in wind doofus.

  • June Genis||

    Johnson may not be able to pull together a large enough plurality to win but he is highly likely to demonstrate why we need Ranked Choice rather than Plurality Voting.

  • Anastasia Beaverhausen||

    No. I feel no need to "rank" three evils because there is no "lesser" of three evils.

  • Rock Lobster||

    Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) tweeted Friday, has "supported abolishing the minimum wage, raising the Social Security retirement age, & gutting health care." Added Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.): "We can't afford to...let Gary Johnson take New Mexico backward at the expense of working families."

    Say what you will about Gary Johnson, at least his enemies recognize him. Too bad he won't reciprocate, HRC being such an "outstanding public servant," and all.

  • plowe70||

    Johnson, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) tweeted Friday, has "supported abolishing the minimum wage, raising the Social Security retirement age, & gutting health care."


    Sounds like a plan!

  • jdd6y||

    Just another reason to regret my vote for Johnson in the last election. If he were a serious person then he would have sought the Republican nomination -- he has no chance to win in a 3 way race. He would have had an excellent chance in a 2 way race. So, all he really did was ensure a left winger a vote in the Senate. I'm sure Johnson didn't want to actually have to campaign in a primary. So, he's got another mail-in campaign. Heck of a job.

  • galken||

    Testosterone treatment is heavily advertised on conservative talk radio. Gun safes, gold and limp dicks.

    http://colorswitch2.com

  • Will Seth||

    The candidate I'd most like to smoke a doobie with: Gary Johnson.

    Run Gary, run.

  • ThomasD||

    I'd be more excited if the sample size was 2000. That said, I think the results are credible.

    Mostly because they are consistent with New Mexico. Getting those kinds of numbers there are possible when you are:

    1. Not a Republican
    2. Not a Republican
    3. Not a Republican
    4. Not a party apparachik Democrat
    5. Have some name recognition in the State

  • ||

    Let me know what his poll numbers look like after he opens his mouth.

  • Longtobefree||

    I seem to recall that lots of people no longer tell pollsters the truth.

  • JFerrier||

    This is exactly what Libertarians should be focusing on. Forget the Presidency. There's way too many voters to persuade and no entry into debates. We need to focus on Senate and Congress races that can actually be won and establish Libertarian leaders at the National level first. Unlike the Presidency, these races are determined by a relatively small amount of voters inside a few counties. We need to cherry pick areas where red and blue are evenly split and focus support and money on getting good candidates to run in those specific areas.

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