November 26, 2011

Gary Johnson may run Libertarian

He's the one true Libertarian, more than Ron Paul, in the GOP race now. And, he's got a good point: Even more than Paul, the GOP has screwed him. He was outpolling both Jon Huntsman and Rick Santorum a couple of months back, but then got dropped from polling by folks like CNN. Well, it's hard to meet a 3 percent polling requirement if your name isn't on the poll!
"I feel abandoned by the Republican Party," Johnson said in a phone interview. "The Republican Party has left me by the wayside."

He's been left out of all but two of the seemingly endless Republican presidential debates. His fundraising is low and his poll numbers are below radar level.

"If I'd have been included in 16 of the last debates we wouldn't even be having this conversation," Johnson said. 
If he ran as a Libertarian, he'd potentially be the party's strongest candidate ever. Unlike Paul, he openly advocates for more in the way of drug decriminalization and legalization. Unlike Paul, he's pro-choice. Unlike Paul, he doesn't demonize gays. And, as a triathlete and mountain climber, he'd appeal to a younger set than Paul.

And, was this a deliberate GOP decision? Here's Johnson again:
As for the National Republican Party, he said, "They certainly don't want anything to do with ideas. Only protecting the status quo." Excluding him, Johnson said, "was a boardroom decision somewhere."

online magazine reporter Dave Weigel on Wednesday expressed sympathy for Johnson's plight.

"The rules that allowed no-hopers like Tommy Thompson, Jim Gilmore and Tom Tancredo into the 2007 debates would have let Johnson and [former Louisiana Gov.] Buddy Roemer in," Weigel wrote Wednesday. "So we're spared the presence of governors who last won elections in 1989 and 1998, and gifted with a senator who last won election in 2000 and a businessman who has never won anything." 
I think the GOP realized Paul had nuanced his style enough, and had enough credibility with tea party types as well as libertarians, that the party simply couldn't exclude him. That said, that's no excuse for picking a Santorum over Johnson, or over Buddy Roemer, for that matter.

I hope that Johnson does run. I don't agree with most of his economic ideas, but, he's a straight shooter. (Again, even more than Paul is.)


Sheldon said...

Obviously he isn't even being sufficiently victimized by the Liberal bias of the mainstream media enough to be put on the mainstream media's radar, and thus mine!

John Coby said...

He is a loon. let him run.

Gadfly said...

He is a loon, in many ways, John. How many governors would veto a bill originally pushed for by their own wives, even after it went through the N.M. legislative sausage grinder?

That said, that does show his integrity.

Sheldon, I worked as editor of a weekly paper in N.M. during part of his governorship. I like "touting" him in part to undercut the Paul-tards; that's why I call him the "one real libertarian in the GOP race."

On the personal side, he's interesting enough. He admits to regularly smoking pot within the last decade; he's run in triathlons; and he's climbed Everest.

Sheldon said...

Actually, I have heard of him now that you mention he was an advocate of legalization and was the NM gov. I was thinking "what happened to that guy?" and he is probably much saner than the other bunch.

I was mainly making a joke about the absurd "mainstream media is against us conservatives meme"