The Freedom Fest in Las Vegas is a gathering of investment libertarian interests assembled by investment adviser and PhD Economist Mark Skousen. The participants and speakers range from typical conservatives to a group I refer to as the liberty geeks who love to discuss the finer points of Ayn Rand and her objectivist philosophy. Overall it has a strong libertarian bent.
Libertarian president candidate Gary Johnson and William Weld were there and I got to meet them very briefly. Both Johnson and Weld are experienced in government having been two term governors in New Mexico and Massachusetts respectively. Weld seems a bit more comfortable on foreign policy issues, but they are equals on the ticket and both had successful terms governing as Republicans in Democratic leaning states.
Gary is very personable and seems as unlikely a politician as you could ask for. I mean that as a compliment. He is a regular guy. His Libertarian leaning is less extreme than many in the party but enough that many republicans are still uncomfortable with him.
Both are credible and experienced political leaders, but struggle to lead a party than many have trouble taking seriously. They have a much better chance of recognition in this election because the candidates from both parties are so distrusted. They are polling over 10% which is much better than any third party since Ross Perot. At 15% Gary gets on the debates with Hillary and Donald. It would be interesting to see how he performs on that stage.
Realistically they would have to carry an entire state to get any electoral votes and that appears unlikely, At the gathering there were many who do not like Trump, but rationalize their support by suggesting we would all be better off somehow by letting Trump get elected and ‘blowing things up’. It is an irresponsible comment for many reasons and historically unlikely to get the results they want if they even knew what they wanted.
The Framers of the Constitution designed the document specifically to avoid such an outcome. The terms are staggered and power is dispersed to minimize the chance of a demagogue sweeping our valuable rights aside on the whims of a populist uprising riding on the passions of the moment. There is much the president can do, but there are real limits as well. Trump’s followers will likely be disappointed.
For the many who find themselves unable to vote for Hillary or Donald, the Johnson Weld ticket is attractive. If you really want to shake things up in DC they would be the better choice.