Tuesday, July 10, 2012

If Gary Johnson is not in the race to win....

Then WHY is he in it at all?
To make a point?
To hurt one of the candidates who CAN WIN?

Does he actually Matter?
Third party candidates swing electoral college votes, so pay attention to that, instead. Al Gore would have become president in 2000 if Ralph Nader had failed to make the ballot in New Hampshire. Nader got 22,198 votes there; Gore lost the state to Bush by 7,211 votes. Nothing could have saved John McCain in 2008, but had Bob Barr failed to make the North Carolina ballot, McCain might have won the state -- 25,722 votes for the Libertarian, only 14,177 votes separating Obama from the loser.

No one, not even Gary Johnson, expects him to score Perot numbers nationally. But in his New Mexico, he polls at 7 to 12 percent. In New Hampshire, he polls at 7 percent. If this is going to be an election defined by negative ads and Obama trying to disqualify Romney personally, there's going to be some runoff into third party voting. The most serious third party candidate used to be a Republican. You can see how this goes.
BTW, I have NO DOUBT Gary Johnson is a smart, good, and decent man. Now that's all well and good, but that's not the point I'm trying to make here. My point is, HE CAN'T WIN....and in a close election......He can ONLY HURT one of the candidates who can.

Where am I Wrong?

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mackler said...

You're creating a false dichotomy in which the only possibilities are the candidate can win or he must solely be a spoiler.

The problem here is you treat elections as a zero sum game. You either win or lose. But elections are only the start of issues. A candidate is hopefully defined by what they stand for, and Gary Johnson can at the very least make Mitt Romney adopt some of his views so Mitt Romney can coopt supporters and strive higher than his current 30% chance at winning this election.

Gary Johnson can hopefully get to 15% so he can provide a third voice to the American people in the election debates, can hopefully create a movement or at least push ideas that help good causes. I don't know his motivations for being in the race, but the problem with your post is you literally dismiss all third party candidates throughout history. Without third party candidates, parties would have been less responsive to the people than they are now.

So where did you go wrong? When you said "He can ONLY HURT one of the candidates who can."
that is where you are wrong because you are too short sighted to understand the big picture. Elections are important, but so is the future.

libertarian and realist said...

You are correct, he is a spoiler. If he had not tried to win the Republican nomination first to see it go no where, I probably would agree with anon above.

His problem is, that he can,t take no for an answer. So now, he can potentially cost Romney the election if it is real close.

He needs to decide who. Is closer to his ideology, drop out and support that person'

Anonymous said...

If it's close and Obama wins, I hope he'll be happy.

Terrye said...

mackler..Ross Perot got to 15% and the only thing that got us was Bill Clinton...the guy who signed the bill repealing Glass Steagall, helping to bring about the financial meltdown. The man who refused to take Osama from Sudan when they offered to turn him over..Clinton the man who made the removal from office of Saddam Hussein our national policy and then left it to someone else to accomplish.

We do not have a parliamentary system in this country..it is a two party system. Winner take all. And the only thing some loon like Gary Johnson accomplishes is to make himself famous and hopefully rich while he gets some Democrat elected.

Anonymous said...

I think Gary Johnson is a lot like Chief Justice Roberts.....he wants to be loved and adored by Hollywood and the MSM. If he ensures an Obama victory,the MSM will probably give him a TV gig.

If we do not repeal Obamacare,this country is sunk! If Obama gets 4 more years,this country will pass the tipping point into a socialist nightmare. I really believe that is why Ron Paul is not running 3rd party...he knows the country can't take the risk of 4 more years of Obama.

Jenny said...

You are absolutely right

Faith Martin said...

Gary Johnson, no matter how serious he may be personally, cannot seriously believe he will win the presidency. You can count on no fingers how many times in modern history a third party candidate has done so. He has to know that all he will do, in this our most important election since Lincoln, that all he will accomplish is taking votes away from the GOP nominee, and rack up campaign debt for himself. In this election, we cannot afford 3rd party candidates, especially not this late in the game, and not a GOP ex-candidate feeling sour grapes. We already have a liberatarian running, Paul, whether he says he is or not, to mess up the waters, we don't need Johnson messing them up further.

Anonymous said...

IMHO, Johnson is in the race for principle, for being frustrated in loosing the GOP nomination, and as a part of that frustration, for having a platform to spotlight Libertarian economic ideas. Had Romney embraced some of those ideas in his campaign, there would be no need for Johnson to run.

Instead of complaining about Johnson, or just shoeing him away, Romney needs to incorporate the economic ideas of the Austrian School (supply side economics that Reagan employed), to champion free markets, capitalism, and to stop the upside-down world of Keynesian interventionism. Romney is a capitalist, he should know each one of these issues well.

I'm embracing Romney as my personal "last chance" candidate. If conservatives loose this election, there will likely never be a second chance to defeat obamacare & socialism. Romney needs to step up here, right know & get the best staff, advisors, and spokesmen for him. It is truly, victory or defeat.

Romney has to unite all conservatives into a broad coalition; centerists, neo-cons, tea-a-cons, fiscal conservatives, social conservatives, true conservatives, and libertarians. He has to find & deliver messaging that the American public will resonate to. Gone are the days of negative campaign ads. Look at the chart of obama's negative ad spending for the last few months, it has not helped him at all.

It's Romney's race to win or loose. The strategy, messaging & issues are his to present. Get 'er Done!

Anonymous said...


I agree with LH that Romney needs to get more specific about why the OBAMATAX is bad for the US. It is all in the messaging. Romney is speaking in broad talking points. He needs to highlight and get specific as to how the 21 taxes will impact the average person and business. He needs to emphasize what these taxes are and how they will not reduce the cost of Healthcare. He needs to emphasize how this law will be enforced through an expanded IRS agency. He needs to really stress that the cadillac healthcare plans that people enjoy will be taxed at a substantial rate...I believe it is 30% of the actual value of the policy.

Romney I heard has a more specific patient centered healthcare plan...I think he is strategically waiting to release detailed plans because Obama will copy them and promote them as his own...similar to what Obama did with Rubio. Obama has this way of stealing language from his opponents
and branding them as his own and the media lets him get away with this tactic.

Bottom line, I am more of a libertarian than a Bush Republican and I do not see the value in placing my vote for Gary Johnson. I do see the value in promoting Ron Paul endorsed candidates for Senate and House races. Kurt Bills in MN, I believe has strong potential..RW thinks I am nuts but I believe Klobuchar is vulnerable with her 98% Obama voting record and her vote for healthcare. If this state can elect GOP governors like Pawlenty,we should be able to elect Bills.

The people in Indiana were able to knock out Lugar for Mourdock and hopefully Texas will get Cruz. These type of leaders will push a GOP president to the right...and as far as I am concerned the pendulum needs a strong push to the right!

If the GOP splits the vote then we will have Obama as president vetoing all of the conservatives bill and branding them as obstructionists and the media will play into his song and dance. Obama will then use executive orders like never before until this country is completely transformed.

I truly fear that 4 more years of Obama will greatly impact our freedom of speech. This is one reason why I feel like this election is the point of no return. Conservative voices will be stifled through Chicago style tactics. When Obama's chairman of the FCC makes comments to the affect that he admires Venezuela's communication's laws then people should be concerned.

Attached is a link regarding Mark Lloyd and his views on Venezuela.

Alan Reese said...

There is no need to get worked up about Gary Johnson, he will have zero impact on the election just as he had zero impact in the primary. The fact of the matter is that someone like Gary Johnson probably hurts Obama as much or more than Romney anyway, he will attract as many on the far left as he does on the far right.

Machtyn said...

"Romney is a capitalist, he should know each one of these issues well." -LH

He does know each of these issues well. The problem, I think, is that the people don't know, don't listen, or don't care that Romney shows that he knows these issues.

You can't have about an 80% business success rate, turn around an Olympics, and turn around a state(commonwealth) without knowing a little something about economics and free/open market principles. Unfortunately, people are wont to believe the worst about Romney, to believe the detractors and the liars.

Granted, Romney is presenting a plan that is likely going to hurt in the beginning. He's not going to give us "free" stuff. He is going to present ideas, plans, and solutions that will cause people to work and improve themselves and the people around them.

Anonymous said...


I think most voters also do not realize that Romney accepted no salary as governor or as the CEO of the Olympics. I think the Democrats have built off of the Perry Gingrich attacks on Romney as a vulture capitalist. People probably think that if the GOP candidates were saying this...then it must be true. People have no idea that Romney was brought in by the companies to invest and turn around failing companies. People think Romney specialized in hostile takeovers etc...

Bottom line Romney needs to aggressively get out in front of these issues.

Anonymous said...

Dittos to the comment from Terrye.

Romney plans head us toward self-respect and jobs. Thank God for Romney. This is NOT hurtful.

We need to send a LOUD message that is Pro-freedom. The world needs America to be strong.

Terrye said...

Lionhead...he is in the race for self aggrandizement..if he actually believed half the stuff he says there is no way he would help get Obama re-elected. Words are cheap.

Anonymous said...

To the question: Does Gary Johnson really matter?

Only in New Mexico. Obama will win NM and its 5 electoral votes because of Johnson. Too many there will vote for the former republican governor that otherwise would have voted for Romney. NM was considered a swing state and probably could have been won by Romney, but it now leans Obama and will be won by him, thanks to Gary.

Romney will win NH (and its 4 electoral votes). That race will be close enough that the vast majority of voters who would now consider Johnson will take sides and vote either for Obama or Romney, and although a toss-up to the end, Romney will win it.

In the end, I am sure Romney will win (pending his supporters stay involved and also get out and vote), not withstanding Johnson handing NM to Obama. In my mind, the only question is will the economy deteriorate enough before November, and people get concerned enough and wake up to the importance of this election in particular to make it a landslide for Romney or will it be a squeaker for Romney, where he barely makes it by the skin of his teeth? The polls will show Obama ahead much of the time between now and then, but that is my prediction for the outcome.

As to why Gary is running? He is clearly in it just for himself. As Terrye and others have aptly said, he knows what is at stake and what the results will be depending on who wins, but he is just thinking of himself.

Mackler couldn't be more wrong, as some have politely indicated. Gary will get less votes than Bob Barr did last time (who by the way supports Romney this time around along with his 2008 libertarian VP running mate and Paul's own son-- see http://www.aboutmittromney.com/libertarians.htm). Bob Barr (being republican) did better than any libertarian candidate in recent memory, and probably ever. The result? Less than 1% voted for him but it still came up to several hundred thousand. There will be no 15% range like Ross Perot (who also supports Romney), who got 19%. Nope, all the sensible 3rd party inclined types recognize the importance of this election and most will vote Romney.

Anonymous said...

You should give it a real effort or either one of the primary candidates will finish off our Democracy either by expanding the government or making his top 5 per cent of his class not pay their fair share. They will then tax the middle class into oblivion so we are all poor.
We need your help other than just taking a few votes from the main stream. If you are not in it to win it, get out of the way for ine who will try, like Paul Ryan.