I have always been pretty attentive to politics. I have voted in every major election since I turned 18 (including Bush, Bush, Mccain and Romney) and most mid-term and local elections as well. I have always enjoyed the debate, the process and the sense of doing my part to contribute to the character of this country.
As a lifelong conservative, my views have shifted over the last 10 years from traditional mainstream republican views, to a more nuanced and ‘liberty-minded’ conservatism. This transition has been due in part to getting older and adding depth to my view of the world, but also to my experience in law school (particularly constitutional law). It is difficult to study the constitution in any depth without emerging at least slightly more of a libertarian than when the study began.
This newly-formed libertarian streak led me directly to the doorstep of the candidate who I believe in more than I have any other in my lifetime; Senator Rand Paul from Kentucky. Unfortunately, despite my best efforts and financial support, his message did not catch on. (I’m still holding out hope for 2020).
This year I have experienced the profound sense that something has gone terribly wrong in the process, and I do not believe it is as simple as blaming the one candidate who has dominated the headline of every newspaper and broadcast for the last 13 months. That candidate is a symptom, not a cause. There is a deep divisiveness and hatred that is reaching a boiling point and is being given the spotlight and used as a tool in the national discussion.
I am not going to engage in the illusion of choice between two equally bad ideas. I whole-heartedly support Gary Johnson and I look forward to casting my first vote for a Libertarian candidate for President in November of this year.
I won’t provide a laundry list of policy positions here and defend them one by one. If you are at all interested in any of my specific rationale, you may want to visit my detailed thoughts on an assortment of issues. (Click for index).
But these details are not important to understand my support of Gary Johnson. This is a big picture decision coming down to the honesty and character of the candidates, and my best understanding of the role government should play in our lives.
The two major party nominees have made their cases. They have taken different approaches but their view of government is the same. Both of them see Government as the Alpha and the Omega. Both play on our worst fears and guarantee us that only they can rescue us. Both favor a planned economy. Both will increase the size of government. Neither will reform social security which is disastrously insolvent. Neither appreciate the limits on the executive branch which are foundational to our constitution and our liberty.
Ah yes… Liberty. When is the last time you heard either major party candidate even use the word?
Gary Johnson is a successful entrepreneur, a two-term governor elected as a republican in a blue state, an iron-man runner and mountain climber, a student of the constitution, A Christian, a quirky yet honest and humble guy.
Let him introduce himself:
If you value my opinion, I’d like you to consider Gary Johnson as well. I am happy to discuss any details about Gary Johnson, or any other questions you might have. Just comment below.
You also may feel free to tell me “You’re wasting your vote”, or “A vote for a 3rd party is a vote for _______”, but please understand I have given that suggestion a great deal of thought and I am well prepared to discuss in detail why it is utter nonsense.
It is time to try a new approach; the approach envisioned by our founders. It’s time to Live Free!