Libertarians Regain Party Status, Will Put Johnson/Weld on South Dakota Ballot

LPSDlogo
Libertarians: back on the ballot!

We have the Libertarians to kick around again! The Libertarian Party of South Dakota submitted 7,859 valid signatures (13% more than the 6,936 required) to win back its status as an official political party in South Dakota. The Libertarians missed their chance to select candidates via primary for Legislature and Congress (and they’re still suing over South Dakota’s unconstitutionally early petition deadline), but they can hold a convention this summer and nominate Presidential electors and a candidate for Public Utilities Commission.

Libertarian Party chair Ken Santema says a Libertarian PUC bid is up in the air (hey, does Chad Haber have a job yet? He could use the money.), but the tentatively scheduled July 23 Libertarian convention will cough up a Presidential ticket, as will South Dakota’s Constitution Party:

Probably the biggest gain by the people of South Dakota in the LPSD attaining ballot access is another choice in the Presidential election. Voters do not have to choose the lesser of two evils. The Libertarian Party will have Gary Johnson on the ticket as the presidential candidate and William Weld as the vice presidential candidate. Additionally the Constitution Party of South Dakota, which also regained ballot access this year, will have presidential candidate Darrell Castle and vice presidential candidate Scott Bradley on the ballot. There is no reason for anyone to feel they have to settle for Trump or Clinton [Ken Santema, “Libertarian Party of South Dakota Recognized by SOS,” SoDakLiberty, 2016.06.17].

Johnson wants to replace progressive income tax with a regressive nationwide consumption tax (tempered by prebates on necessities), legal pot, legal abortion, no more unconstitutional surveillance, simpler immigration rules, Internet freedom, less incarceration, inaction in the face of climate change (interventions are not cost-effective, says Johnson), and universal school vouchers.

Castle wants to take away our right to elect Senators; calls progressive taxation, public schools, and the minimum wage examples of “legalized plunder“; intimates that he would ignore the Supreme Court; would withdraw our country from the United Nations; says Syrian refugees include thousands of terrorists; and accuses homosexuals and transsexuals of being part of “the depopulation agenda.”

Johnson offers debatable alternatives for voters; Castle offers nutbars.

But hey, Green neighbors! If the Libertarians can get their Presidential alternative on the ballot, so can you! Get hustling with those petitions!


22 Responses to Libertarians Regain Party Status, Will Put Johnson/Weld on South Dakota Ballot

  1. Mike Kokenge SR

    Can this entry be enough to swing SD’s 3 electoral votes to Hillary?

  2. mike from iowa

    OT-I’d like to take the libertarian at this time to say to every Mother’s son out there, have a safe and happy Father’s Day-whoever and where ever you are.

  3. Gotta love that logo!

  4. Mike, that’s an intriguing question. Let’s consider the possibilities:

    In 2012, Gary Johnson won 1.6% of South Dakota’s Presidential vote. Mitt Romney beat Barack Obama 57.9% to 39.9%, and 18-point spread.

    Let’s assume that in a fair fight, Hillary Clinton would do no better than Barack Obama in 2012. She gains votes because she’s not black, but she loses votes because she’s Hillary Clinton.

    Donald Trump will not do as well as Mitt Romney. For every vote he gains for his celebrity, brashness, open racism, etc., he will lose two among sane voters. (South Dakotans, I am putting significant faith in your overall morality and good sense here. Don’t let me down.)

    We need over 31% of the Romney vote—18% of the total 2012 SD Presidential turnout—to not vote for Trump. If ever there was a year when the Libertarian candidate could break 10% in South Dakota, this is that year. But I don’t think Johnson will, because the Libertarians probably won’t be able to get their poop in a group and wage a serious campaign on Johnson’s behalf. (Libertarians, please, prove me wrong.)

    I’ll bet a majority of SD Republicans will be able to rationalize to themselves that Trump still isn’t as bad as Clinton. No significant percentage of SD Republicans would believe that Gary Johnson could win; without a serious campaign presence, few would believe he could actually do the job better than Trump or Clinton. They would do the same calculus as we are doing here: they would know that a vote for Johnson is a vote for Clinton.

    Gary Johnson could make a difference at the margin, but he doesn’t turn South Dakota blue on his own. Clinton and Sanders would have to decide South Dakota is worth fighting for and wage a serious battle up and down the ticket. Clinton would have to come here again and shake a lot of hands; Sanders would have to pour on the volunteer effort to drive turnout for Legislative races and bring back all those Democratic voters who disengaged after 2008.

  5. I’m not ruling out the possibility that I’ll end up voting for them, and I’ll be glad to have them on the ballot either way, but …

    Gary Johnson and William Weld are fake libertarians miseducating the public:
    http://www.redstate.com/diary/southernconstitutionalist/2016/05/28/gary-johnson-and-william-weld-are-fake-libertarians-miseducating-the-public/

    The more objectionable view of Johnson is that social liberalism is essential to libertarianism. In fact, it is distinct, if not in opposition to the philosophy. The great libertarian scholar Murray Rothbard put it like this:

    There are libertarians who are indeed hedonists and devotees of alternative lifestyles, and there are also libertarians who are firm adherents of “bourgeois” conventional or religious morality. There are libertarian libertines and there are libertarians who cleave firmly to the disciplines of natural or religious law. There are other libertarians who have no moral theory at all apart from the imperative of non-violation of rights. That is because libertarianism per se has no general or personal moral theory.

    Libertarianism does not offer a way of life; it offers liberty, so that each person is free to adopt and act upon his own values and moral principles. Libertarians agree with Lord Acton that “liberty is the highest political end” – not necessarily the highest end on everyone’s personal scale of values.

  6. I like parties! Please! May we have more, please!??

  7. Curt, I would welcome the entry of a new party capable of organizing, mobilizing voters, winning elections, and passing legislation.

    Passages like Kurt’s quote from RedState, which sounds an awful lot like Sibby’s abstruse complaints, will make most voters’ eyes glaze over and prevent them from taking the Libertarian Party seriously.

  8. Green party candidates maybe ……….but this Johnson clown is really messed up ….Libertarians. REALLY?

  9. grudznick is most pleased about this. It will be a topic of conversation at Talley’s this morning, no doubt.

  10. I will look to hear more from this Mr. Johnson and hope he is not a wild-eyed fiend of the evil weed, insaner than most. I, for one, may be looking for an alternative vote and despite his fascination with the ditchweed and smoking of the pot I could easily support the rest of his positions.

  11. mike from iowa

    So you got J-B Weld. Does that create a strong enough bond to hold Libertarians together?

  12. “mike from iowa” writes:

    So you got J-B Weld. Does that create a strong enough bond to hold Libertarians together?

    No, but Republicans probably aren’t going to Trump it.
    (pause for collective groan)

    Cory writes:

    Passages like Kurt’s quote from RedState, which sounds an awful lot like Sibby’s abstruse complaints, will make most voters’ eyes glaze over and prevent them from taking the Libertarian Party seriously.

    It wouldn’t surprise me if the article sounded abstruse to most voters, especially considering that most voters seem to have difficulty comprehending anything more complicated than “Foreigners are bad!” or “I’ll buy you stuff with other people’s money!”

    Here’s my take on the core issue:

    The teachings of Jesus Christ support the principle that we’re all endowed by our Creator with the unalienable right to liberty. Gary Johnson and William Weld oppose securing that right for a child in the womb or for an evangelical Christian, apparently because Johnson and Weld despise both Christ’s teachings and His followers.

    As I said above, I’m not ruling out the possibility that I’ll end up voting for them, and I’ll be glad to have them on the ballot either way.

    DISCLAIMER: I’m a registered Democrat who recently voted for Hillary Clinton in South Dakota’s presidential primary. I’m not commenting on behalf of the Libertarian Party. I’d definitely like “most voters” to take the Libertarian Party seriously, but whether they do so isn’t my primary concern.

  13. mike from iowa

    I is impressed, Mr Evans. :)

  14. I’m glad they are on the ballot. It’s ridiculous that small parties get kicked off of the ballot every 4 years and have to get back on. Hopefully the Libertarian Party will run a PUC candidate who actually understands the issues. Will the Democratic Party field a candidate? Will that person be recruited at a bar?

  15. Don Coyote

    I voted 3 times for a Libertarian candidate. McBride in ’76, Paul in ’88, and Browne in ’96. Johnson doesn’t excite me at all. In fact I’d vote for Trump over Johnson if I was voting at all. In fact I’m so disgusted with the electoral slates I’d de-register if I could but there doesn’t seem to be a mechanism provided for that.

  16. Kurt, that disconnect with evangelical Christians would seem to make the Libertarian ticket a nonviable alternative for a big chunk of the Republicans who’d like to get away from Trump without voting for Clinton.

    Don, committing a felony will get you de-registered PDQ. So would renouncing your citizenship and moving to Canada.

    Or you could just stay home and not vote.

    Not that I would recommend that any citizen forsake his or her right to vote… but Don occasionally incites me toward such an uncharitable position. Deep breaths….

  17. Cory writes:

    Kurt, that disconnect with evangelical Christians would seem to make the Libertarian ticket a nonviable alternative for a big chunk of the Republicans who’d like to get away from Trump without voting for Clinton.

    Yep. That’s one of the main reasons 50.5 percent of the Libertarian convention voted against Gary Johnson on the first ballot. Pro-liberty Christians trying to decide among South Dakota’s four likely presidential options have a lot to consider.

  18. Bob Newland

    Don, if you are intent, you can go to your local county auditor and have your name lifted from the voter rolls.

  19. Mr. Coyote, I, for one, am still intregued by this Mr. Johnson. He has an affinity for the demon weed but the rest of his platforms seem interesting.

  20. Bob Newland

    And, ahhhh, Grudznick, you have an affinity for the nether parts of almost any animal.

  21. I’m nervous those pro-liberty Christians are going to try to hasten their liberation from this fallen world by voting for Trump to provoke Armageddon.

  22. Cory writes:

    I’m nervous those pro-liberty Christians are going to try to hasten their liberation from this fallen world by voting for Trump to provoke Armageddon.

    I’m not sure whether you’re joking, but to be clear, my reference to “pro-liberty” Christians is intended to exclude warmongers. The sixteenth chapter of Revelation says Armageddon will be provoked by Christ’s enemies, not His allies:

    “For they are spirits of demons, performing signs, which go out to the kings of the whole world, to gather them together for the war of the great day of God, the Almighty.”
    —The Bible (Revelation 16:14)