Because we don’t hear nearly enough about the handful of third-party candidates on this year’s ballot, here’s Libertarian party chairman Aaron Aylward explaining why he’d be a good Representative for District 6:
To the bad, Aylward upwardly intones the ends of his sentences, making almost every line sound like a question or an item recited from a list. Be confident, candidates! Bring your intonation down at the ends of your sentences. Make statements.
In similar subtle uncertainty, Aylward twice uses an odd “if you want to call it that” qualifier. Why would there be any doubt about calling these three main points your “platform”? Why soft-pedal the importance of your concluding item, civil rights? If you’ve crafted your speech to list points in order of importance, don’t equivocate: make your intent clear.
On policy, Aylward gets a little distracted with rhetoric about the federal government “having a say on a lot of the things we do.” Legislators won’t have a lot of impact on the laws Congress passes. The only way for Aylward to enact this standard anti-DC platform plank is to not spend the federal money Congress sends us, which would leave us driving to Pierre on gravel.
To the good, Libertarian Aylward’s statement isn’t a quarter as full of error and horsehockey as the statements of Kristi Noem, Al Novstrup, and other Republican hogwashers. He expresses an honest desire for more local control. Instead of crying “Taxation is theft!” as some anarchist Libertarian clingers are wont to cry, Aylward urges transparent and efficient use of our tax dollars. Transparency is the same thing Attorney General Marty Jackley says we need to fight corruption, since he can’t successfully prosecute anyone for misuse of tax dollars.
And in his most important, best-for-last point, Aylward calls for protecting civil liberties “for all constituents.” His “do want you want in your house, on your property, as long as you’re not hurting your next-door neighbor” doesn’t explain Aylward’s commitment to the broader protections that LGBTQ South Dakotans, immigrants, refugees, American Indians, and women need in South Dakota when they step out of their houses and off their property to work, vote, learn, visit the doctor, or exercise their liberty throughout their community.
In another video, Aylward says he grew up in an independent/Democratic family, which suggests he at least started from a base of respect for equal rights. But then Aylward says he turned to Libertarian on the teachings of Ron Paul, who said overturning Jim Crow laws was less important than protecting property rights. Let’s hope Aylward doesn’t really buy that sort of discrimination the way Republican District 9 House candidate Michael Clark does.
While he’s got to iron out that upward intonation, Aylward comes across at least as cogent as the Republicans who babble their party talking points (or, in Rep. Isaac Latterell’s case, their total distractions from practical policy problem-solving). Harrisburg, Tea, Lennox, if you’re just too conservative to vote for Farmer Nancy Kirstein (but how, how could that be?!), use your vote to send the first Libertarian legislator to Pierre.