Too often I hear the phrase akin to “Neither candidate running for President is any good, but I need to vote for one of them.” I usually reply something along the lines of “You know there is a third choice. His name is Gary Johnson, and he is the Libertarian running for President.”
Who is Gary Johnson? Gary Johnson is the definition of pull yourself up by your own bootstraps. Though he grew up in a poor family, with hard work, he paid his way through college by forming a door to door handyman company. That company grew to become one of the largest construction companies in his home state, New Mexico. From there, Johnson spring boarded himself into the world of politics.
In 1994, he was elected as the Republican Governor of New Mexico. He described himself as a Goldwater Republican (which is similar to Libertarianism). His goal was simple: put “People before Politics.” From there Johnson would cut massive amounts of spending and shrinking the government. He became known as Governor Veto as he vetoed countless wasteful spending propositions. He was also the first governor to call for full legalization of marijuana. By the time he had finished his two terms, he had balanced the state budget and generated a surplus in state funds, one of the few states that can make that claim.
In 2012, Governor Johnson decided to spread his message of limited government and more personal freedom into the election cycle by running for president. Soon after he declared his candidacy, he learned that the Republican Party had left people like him behind, as the party itself had moved into a more big government populist party (which it still is as reflected perfectly in the rise of Trump) compared to a small government conservative party that it once was. Johnson soon decided that the GOP was dead to him and joined up with the Libertarian Party which was closer aligned with his beliefs. After winning the Libertarian nomination he earned just about one percent of the total vote in the 2012 election.
If one percent seems like nothing you would be right, but Johnson once again won the Libertarian Party nomination for this election, except Johnson is polling much higher than he did in 2012. National polls show him at 12 percent and some state polls have him as high as 16 percent. The Libertarian Party will have ballot access on all 50 states this election. Together with his vice-presidential nominee, Governor Bill Weld (the former and extremely popular governor of Massachusetts), Johnson is going to make a large impact in this election. That is why he matters.
So why should you vote Johnson over Hillary or Trump? A brief rundown of Johnson’s platform will explain why. Gary Johnson believes in:
- End the War on Drugs
- Marriage Equality
- Internet Freedom
- Ending our involvement in the wars in the Middle East
- End corporate welfare
- Cut government spending
- Introduction of the Fair Tax
- Free Trade
- Free Markets
- Gun Rights
- Repeal of Obamacare
- Balance the budget deficient
If all or at least the majority of those things sound promising, consider (or at least Google to learn more about) Governor Johnson as an alternative to the mainstream madness in Trump and Clinton.
“Let's put our parties and differences aside one time. Be Libertarian with me for one election. Together, we'll stop the spending and end the wars. Together, we will rebuild our own roads, bridges, schools and hospitals instead of building theirs a half a world away. Together we will restore our industrial mite and our economy. And if in 4 years we as a people decide we don't like peace and prosperity and freedom. We can always vote tyranny back into office, again. America is better and brighter than this. Be Libertarian with me this one time and I will prove it to you.”- Gary Johnson
Authors note: In the coming weeks I’ll be expanding more on Governor Johnson’s policy positions.