Share This Article with a Friend!


Don’t Help Libertarians Hand Control Of Congress To Democrats Part 1

The peculiar tendency for libertarians and constitutionalists to turn on anyone who works to change the Republican Party from within has reared its ugly head again in this year’s life or death struggle for control of Congress and key state Governorships.

Believe me I appreciate the frustration of libertarians and constitutionalist who are ready to bolt the Republican Party – I was in that same place in 1975 when a group of conservatives and libertarians tried to convince Richard ViguerieRonald Reagan to lead a movement to create a new conservative third party.

As I recounted in my book TAKEOEVER, Reagan told us we were nuts and that most conservative voters were Republicans and unlikely to abandon the GOP for a new party.

History has proven Reagan was right, and the arguments against a third-party are the same now as they were when Bill Buckley and Ayn Rand first jousted over where conservatives should find their political home a half a century ago.

The bottom line is that while third-party movements, such as Libertarians, have gained some recognition and added to their numbers, they haven’t actually been electing candidates to office. Limited-government constitutional conservatives running as Republicans win, but the same candidates, with the same ideas, running as Libertarians, lose.

The good news is that, while as yet imperfectly realized, Libertarian ideas have had a powerful influence on the twenty-first century conservative movement, and due in part to Libertarian influence, the Republican Party may truly become the party of less regulation, lower taxes, and more personal freedom—this certainly hasn’t always been the case when one considers that fewer than forty years ago the EPA was established and wage and price controls were instituted under Republican president Richard Nixon.

The bad news is that many in the national and state Libertarian parties actually pride themselves on being destroyers, and when they lose a primary or otherwise don’t get their way, rather than selling themselves and their ideas harder, they try to “teach Republicans a lesson” by running a third-party candidate and thereby causing the Republican candidate to lose, as happened in the November 2013 Virginia governor’s race, when Ken Cuccinelli, one of the most principled limited-government constitutional conservatives ever to seek statewide office in America, was defeated because a Libertarian candidate siphoned off enough conservative votes to elect Terry McAuliffe, a radical liberal Democrat.

We are seeing the same thing happen again this year and later in this article I will review some of the races where Libertarians are siphoning enough liberty-minded voters away from Republicans to throw control of Congress to the Democrats.

Teaching potential converts a lesson by wrecking a winning coalition is a bad way to sell your ideas in the best of times; it is dangerous to the future of the country if a splintering of the liberty coalition returns conservatives to permanent minority status in America.

The future of this country is more important than the personal slights and short-term wins or losses that any candidate and his adherents might suffer. When Libertarians run their own third-party candidates, as they are certainly free to do, they all too often split the twenty-first century conservative coalition and hand victory to Big Government Democrats—as they did in Virginia’s 2013 gubernatorial election.

The greatest challenge limited-government constitutional conservatives running as Republicans will have in future elections where there is a Libertarian Party candidate on the ballot is to earn enough support from liberty-minded voters, who might be inclined to vote for a Libertarian candidate, to achieve a plurality in the election— and the only way to do that is to campaign on and deliver limited constitutional conservative government.

Movement conservatives have been steadily working the plan envisioned by “the Buckley generation” for over fifty years. Inspired by leaders and thinkers such as John Ashbrook, Morton Blackwell, L. Brent Bozell, Jr., William F. Buckley, Jr., Lee Edwards, Tom Ellis, Jerry Falwell, Ed Fuelner, Russell Kirk, Frank Meyer, Howard Phillips, Henry Regnery, Bill Rusher, Phyllis Schlafly, F. Clifton White, Paul Weyrich, and others, we have made great progress in the Republican Party, and more important, in public opinion at large.

Congressman Ron Paul admitted as much when he said no one would have paid any attention to him or his ideas if he had run as a Libertarian, and there is no doubt that Rand Paul would not be a U.S. Senator if he had run as a Libertarian, instead of as a Republican.

What’s more, especially on economics, Donald Trump is arguably the most libertarian President of the modern era.

Tomorrow I will analyze the key races that hang in the balance due to libertarian candidates siphoning votes from liberty-minded Republicans.

Share this

Libertarians

Libertarians need to just run as a third party and galvanize their base if they're truly interested in passing their agenda - and not hide within the GOP as if they're Republicans so they can parasitically pass Libertarian laws. Libertarians today would be an equal party to both the Democrats and Republicans, and probably draw support from both sides since Libertarians exist in both parties. Libertarians have no interest in Constitutional Law, as Grover Norquist once mused "I'm not in favor of abolishing the government. I just want to shrink it down to the size where we can drown it in the bathtub." This is not someone who respects the role of the Constitution. Barry Goldwater understood Republicans were offended by the term Libertarian, so he replaced it with Conservative to systematically take over the GOP while Republicans slept. They rode up to the GOP gates in a Trojan Horse called "Conservative" and all the conservative Republicans welcomed them in with open arms thinking they meant conservative values, but what was inside were Libertarian Conservatives. Libertarian Conservatives have no values other than profit. The bull outside the Stock Exchange is their god. To them, moral values only get in the way. This is why they’re know far and wide as RINO’s. Republican In Name Only.

Well said

Many activists need to hear this.