Quantify the Movement: The Case for Gary Johnson
Written by a Massachusetts Delegate
The Liberty Movement has a tremendous amount of momentum, and with the convention behind us we must set our sights on November and the next four years. We have made great strides in winning offices at the grass-roots level and must continue to do so if we are to affect change, but there is one thing we have not yet been able to accomplish, and that is to show the world exactly how big our movement can be in a general election. We all know there are droves of Ron Paul and Liberty-minded supporters who did not cast votes in primaries either because they are Democrats, Independents, or only interested in participating in a general election. By all casting votes for Gary Johnson we can in the course of just one day show the world how strong we truly are. I call this "Quantifying the Movement" and venture to list
rationales for a Johnson vote below.
The Case for the Republican Party: Often times, out of love, children must be disciplined to help shape them into better people. So is the case with political parties. It is no secret the Republican Party has gone out of their way, even breaking their own rules, to kick the sand in the face of the Liberty Movement. It is true we must transform the party from within in order to change this, but we must also show in no uncertain terms that the Republican Party needs to want and accept this change if it is to maintain and grow the support of such a critical wing of the party. The two agendas are mutually beneficial, not mutually exclusive.
The Case for Rand Paul: If Mitt Romney loses the election "because of Gary Johnson," how powerful would it be for Rand Paul to be able to approach the Republican Party with a quantifiable number of how many voters he could potentially bring back to the party if he were to become the next nominee? Some would argue that Liberty supporters voting against the party would hurt Rand Paul's chances – in truth it only makes them stronger.
The Case of Conscience: For too long have people been subscribing to the notion they must vote for the lesser of two evils. We are at a point in American history where 40% of the population does not identify as either a Democrat or a Republican. This presents an incredible opportunity to show the two parties that the system must evolve in order to survive.
The Case for the Message: A large voter turnout for Gary Johnson and Libertarian beliefs will force the general public to at the very lease ask why, and asking this important question is the first step towards discovering what the Liberty Message actually is.
In the following sections, I would like to offer several alternatives to the Johnson vote and why they are not as supportive of the Liberty Movement.
The No-Vote: Not voting is the weakest form of protest vote an individual can ever perform, simply because it is a protest that will never be heard. Staying home and not voting is quite possibly the worst thing a supporter of the Liberty Movement can do on Election Day.
The Write-In: The unfortunate truth of the matter is that write-ins simply are not counted. The candidate has to make themselves eligible as a write-in in most states and therefore a write-in is the practical equivalent of a no-vote. Gary Johnson will be on the ballot in all 50 states, guaranteeing that those votes for the Liberty Movement have the highest likelihood of being counted.
The Other Third Parties: The other third parties will most likely not be on the ballot in all 50 states. Therefore, not all of the Liberty Movement will be able to cast a unified vote at the national level.
The Romney Vote: The proper way to affect change within the Republican Party is to get and stay organized at the local and grass-roots level. Members of the Liberty Movement must get themselves elected into positions from school boards and town committees all the way up to the Senate. However, thinking change will come by voting for a man who has repeatedly shunned the Liberty Movement is unrealistic and effectively gives permission to the Republican Party to continue business as usual.
The Obama Vote: Many Liberty supporters were once Obama supporters, but it is clear that he has failed in his promise to end wars and promote Liberty. In fact, he has done the exact opposite by creating more wars and passing legislation that erodes personal liberties. The Liberty Movement cannot endorse this and still call itself a Liberty Movement.
Finally, those who take issue with Gary Johnson’s position on abortion must keep in mind that although Ron Paul and Gary Johnson’s personal opinions on abortion differ, their actual policy opinions are not all that different. Both believe that legislation should happen at the state level and not in the courts.
Whatever you do in November, do it at the polls and feel good about the vote you place in the box. We are in a unique position as a movement to parlay great momentum into a very loud and clear message to the Republican Party and the Nation as a whole that the Liberty Movement is alive, well, and indeed the future. Let's show the world what the Liberty Movement means numerically in a General Election so that we may grow in strength and continue to right the path of These United States.