Calling all Libertarians. I am a registered Republican, but I do not agree with everything that Republican leadership pushes. I describe myself as a “Tea Party Republican with Libertarian leanings.”
As a conservative, you and I have much in common, at least according the principles laid out on the Libertarian Party’s website. We both want small government, believe in a free market, and strongly believe in the Bill of Rights and the Constitution. We agree on freedom of speech, on gun laws, on healthcare, and we are pretty close on immigration. The biggest issue that we disagree on is our foreign policy.
As a Libertarian, at least in my best estimation, you and I share FAR more in common, that you do with the Democrats. Please correct me if I am wrong.
Now, understanding those differences and similarities, one must then begin to examine some recent history, and the American electoral system.
There are a number of presidential elections that have occurred during my time in which the election was lost to the Democrats due to the Libertarian vote. I do not mean that as an insult, but it is merely stating a fact.
The presidential election in 1992 was won by Bill Clinton who had 44.9 million votes. Meanwhile, George Bush had 39.1 million and independent (essentially a Libertarian) Ross Perot received 19.7 million. Had Perot not been in the running, it is can be easily argued that Clinton would have lost.
The election of 1996 had similar results, although much less clear cut as far as the final effect, thanks again to Ross Perot. Since 1996, the Libertarian vote has had less of an impact on presidential elections than in those two years, but it still has had an effect.
With that in mind, I sincerely ask for your help.
In the primaries, please vote your heart; vote based on your principles. Push for policies that you agree with, champion the causes you support. In fact, you should do that all year long, as I’m sure you do, since by and large, Libertarians are far more involved and knowledgeable about what the government is doing that most Democrats or Republicans. That said, when it comes to the actual election, please, Please, PLEASE vote for the candidate who more closely shares your values, but also has an actual chance to win the election. I am not saying which candidate that is, because only you know, but if history tells us anything based on empirical data, that winner is not remotely going to be the Libertarian candidate. Sadly, it is just a matter of numbers. Please realize that at this time, a vote for a Libertarian candidate is no different than 1) not voting at all or 2) a vote for the candidate that you dislike the most.
Please, vote with your head this election, not your heart. There is a stark difference between the Democrat candidates in 2016 and the Republicans. While the final nominees have yet to be chosen, the difference between flushing the country down the toilet and at minimum, treading water in the still full bowl, could not be more pronounced.