146 votes

Quantify the Movement: The Case for Gary Johnson

Quantify the Movement: The Case for Gary Johnson
Written by a Massachusetts Delegate

The Liberty Movement has a tremendous amount of momentum, and with the convention behind us we must set our sights on November and the next four years. We have made great strides in winning offices at the grass-roots level and must continue to do so if we are to affect change, but there is one thing we have not yet been able to accomplish, and that is to show the world exactly how big our movement can be in a general election. We all know there are droves of Ron Paul and Liberty-minded supporters who did not cast votes in primaries either because they are Democrats, Independents, or only interested in participating in a general election. By all casting votes for Gary Johnson we can in the course of just one day show the world how strong we truly are. I call this "Quantifying the Movement" and venture to list several rationales for a Johnson vote below.

The Case for the Republican Party: Often times, out of love, children must be disciplined to help shape them into better people. So is the case with political parties. It is no secret the Republican Party has gone out of their way, even breaking their own rules, to kick the sand in the face of the Liberty Movement. It is true we must transform the party from within in order to change this, but we must also show in no uncertain terms that the Republican Party needs to want and accept this change if it is to maintain and grow the support of such a critical wing of the party. The two agendas are mutually beneficial, not mutually exclusive.

The Case for Rand Paul: If Mitt Romney loses the election "because of Gary Johnson," how powerful would it be for Rand Paul to be able to approach the Republican Party with a quantifiable number of how many voters he could potentially bring back to the party if he were to become the next nominee? Some would argue that Liberty supporters voting against the party would hurt Rand Paul's chances – in truth it only makes them stronger.

The Case of Conscience: For too long have people been subscribing to the notion they must vote for the lesser of two evils. We are at a point in American history where 40% of the population does not identify as either a Democrat or a Republican. This presents an incredible opportunity to show the two parties that the system must evolve in order to survive.

The Case for the Message: A large voter turnout for Gary Johnson and Libertarian beliefs will force the general public to at the very lease ask why, and asking this important question is the first step towards discovering what the Liberty Message actually is.

In the following sections, I would like to offer several alternatives to the Johnson vote and why they are not as supportive of the Liberty Movement.

The No-Vote: Not voting is the weakest form of protest vote an individual can ever perform, simply because it is a protest that will never be heard. Staying home and not voting is quite possibly the worst thing a supporter of the Liberty Movement can do on Election Day.

The Write-In: The unfortunate truth of the matter is that write-ins simply are not counted. The candidate has to make themselves eligible as a write-in in most states and therefore a write-in is the practical equivalent of a no-vote. Gary Johnson will be on the ballot in all 50 states, guaranteeing that those votes for the Liberty Movement have the highest likelihood of being counted.

The Other Third Parties: The other third parties will most likely not be on the ballot in all 50 states. Therefore, not all of the Liberty Movement will be able to cast a unified vote at the national level.

The Romney Vote: The proper way to affect change within the Republican Party is to get and stay organized at the local and grass-roots level. Members of the Liberty Movement must get themselves elected into positions from school boards and town committees all the way up to the Senate. However, thinking change will come by voting for a man who has repeatedly shunned the Liberty Movement is unrealistic and effectively gives permission to the Republican Party to continue business as usual.

The Obama Vote: Many Liberty supporters were once Obama supporters, but it is clear that he has failed in his promise to end wars and promote Liberty. In fact, he has done the exact opposite by creating more wars and passing legislation that erodes personal liberties. The Liberty Movement cannot endorse this and still call itself a Liberty Movement.

Finally, those who take issue with Gary Johnson’s position on abortion must keep in mind that although Ron Paul and Gary Johnson’s personal opinions on abortion differ, their actual policy opinions are not all that different. Both believe that legislation should happen at the state level and not in the courts.

Whatever you do in November, do it at the polls and feel good about the vote you place in the box. We are in a unique position as a movement to parlay great momentum into a very loud and clear message to the Republican Party and the Nation as a whole that the Liberty Movement is alive, well, and indeed the future. Let's show the world what the Liberty Movement means numerically in a General Election so that we may grow in strength and continue to right the path of These United States.

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

Fine write him in and write the RNC to let them know you did....

otherwise, they'll just think you either didn't vote or you voted for Obama. They'll have no way of knowing you wrote-in Ron Paul because your ballot will end-up in the trash-can and no recorded account of the number of Ron Paul write-ins will ever be known to anyone.

Only with RP's blessing

I will gladly vote for Gary Johnson if Ron Paul gives his blessing. Otherwise I will write Ron Paul's name on the ballot machine with a sharpie marker if I have to and will continue to do so every four years for as long as I am able to vote even after Ron Paul is gone. To me Ron Paul is not just a person, he's an idea.

What would Ron do...

Law and liberty cannot rationally become the objects of our love, unless they first become the objects of our knowledge.

James Wilson

think for yourself

you don't need a blessing. why do you need his words and his blessing to change your mind? because you don't think for yourself! I'm not saying you should vote gary johnson but I'm saying that nobody should do the thinking for you!

You sound like a cult member

Dr. Paul is not God so stop looking for his blessing on every decision you make, that's ridiculous. Think for yourself because RP said this movements direction is OUR decision. We are all leaders and freethinkers. Everyone loves RP here but if he doesn't want to continue and doesn't want to be President then writing in his name for the rest of your life is truly fanatical.

I suppose I am a cult member

After watching the RNC it is obvious that no liberty candidate will be ALLOWED to win the presidency. Voting for Ron Paul or Gary Johnson is us sending a message. A show of force in numbers. If half of us vote for RP and half for GJ than our vote will be split and the MSM will have that much of an easier time ignoring and dismissing us. Ron Paul (freedom) brought us together so I will vote for him like I believe most will unless he endorces GJ. If this has already happened than I apologize I must have missed it but will act accordingly if it is brought to my attention. All I'm saying is that we have been unified up to this point and need to remain so.

Law and liberty cannot rationally become the objects of our love, unless they first become the objects of our knowledge.

James Wilson

You sound like a cult member

Dr. Paul is not God so stop looking for his blessing on every decision you make, that's ridiculous. Think for yourself because RP said this movements direction is OUR decision. We are all leaders and freethinkers. Everyone loves RP here but if he doesn't want to continue and doesn't want to be President then writing in his name for the rest of your life is truly fanatical.

I was going to say the same thing

Ron Paul said, "I think he's wonderful. And I think he's doing a great job. And I think people should look at him and make up their own minds."

When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the Universe.
~ John Muir

I saw this

and signed it, wasn't sure why I have never seen it before but hey.. it may be worth a shot if it is legitimate.


I don't think Ron Paul

Would look twice at running 3rd party.. Did you not see the Doug Wead Video on the front page? Romney camp will spend millions smearing Ron Paul's name and everything he has accomplished the last 30 years. Ron Paul wants to go out like a champ, not a like a chump! Not to mention his son Rand's furue(which I think has a lot to do with his decisions)

I agree 100%

and could not have said it better. Thank you for this!

If Ron is Done, Gary is the Man

The overwhelming majority of supporters are figuring this out. Let's keep the message going give Gary the voice we need.

Ron, last shot . . .

Please Ron Paul, we need you for a few more months

Now is the time.

Your strategy has been just right and until now it was right to fight within the GOP to support your delegates and to maximize the impact of the freedom movement.

This run is now over.

Now is the time to team up with Gary Johnson in whatever way possible, bring in other candidates who respect freedom like the Judge, Peter Schiff, Tom Woods and even Dennis Kucinich or other democrats.

As Doug Wead says it is not about left and right or up and down. It is the insiders against all of us. We need to unite all the outsiders to fight the establishment machine. Ron Paul you are the man to do it, we need you now more than ever.

Of course this is all stipulated on the assumption

that your vote in the electronic voting machine will be fair and valid. (I really hate to sound conspiracy theorist here but come on, you got software engineers testifying to state legislatures about the relative ease in which one could rig an election and that coupled with the fact that you do not receive a receipt of any kind after the vote...yah.)

Scattering the vote around

just makes the liberty movement diluted. I love Ron Paul. If he was on the ticket or was running third party I would vote for him and never think twice. At first I said I would write in his name no matter what, but if you think about it logically, by writing in his name or not voting we are wasting the momentum of the liberty movement. If every RP supporter could place their vote in one place think of what a statement that would make. I know many don't like GJ because they disagree with him on a few views. I didn't agree with Ron Paul on every issue either, but the IMPORTANT ones I do, and GJ supports those same ideas. No NDAA, NO Patriot Act, competing currencies, legalize marijuana, auditing the fed, ending the wars..These are the ideas that drew me to Dr Paul in the first place. I don't think anyone really believes that if every RP supporter voted for GJ that he would win, and that is not the point. We need to have SOMEBODY bring our ideas in to the light of day, the debates need to be had, people need to know there is another option besides the crooks on the left and the right. Gary Johnson is the vehicle for that message. Everyone will vote (or not) the way they want to, but I would love to see it actually make a difference and say something. My support is behind Gary Johnson. (unless RP runs third party) Peace!

Obama was in favor of "ending the wars", too

"ending the wars"

Obama talked a good game on that in 2008, too. There were Democrats in 2008 who learned of RP and liked his stronger anti-war stance, but they thought Obama had a better chance of winning. We see where that got us.

GJ talks a good game about ending the *current* wars, but he leaves "all options on the table" (as the saying goes) regarding "humanitarian" wars where there's a really, really, good reason for us to get involved. Ask Obama and the generals and they'll tell you that there's a really, really good reason why the US is involved in all of the current wars.

GJ can't provide a firm moral basis for non-intervention as a whole. He's all about pragmatism. "We can't afford the wars", etc. Not good enough.

As others have pointed out, Bob Barr wanted RP as a running mate. He was a neocon before, and a neocon after. Based on who they've put forward on the most recent two elections, the big-L Libertarian party seems to be controlled by the Kochs and beltway libertarians.

it would be nice for the LP to get 5-20 million votes

I get my hopes up every election but we never seem to get even one million votes. I can see why people think the vote is rigged. It wouldn't be a huge surprise if it was..

Liberty would solve all of the issues if the majority of people could stop being haters

Government is supposed to protect our freedom, our property, our privacy, not invade it. Ron Paul 2007

I find Gary Johnson Frightening.

I do not trust him in the same way that I can trust Ron Paul.

I believe in the freedom to be what we choose to be.

I completely and totally

understand the write in ron paul decision. It is principled, has intergrity and speaks volumes to ones character. It is what our movement is about, to the core. But, there is one thing, We need to show the GOP that we mean business. They need to see our votes in Nov. We all know write in votes do not get counted, sad but true. I will be voting for Johnson, campaigning for Johnson, but he will not get a dime of my money, my money goes to the campaign for liberty and liberty candidates. Johnson is not the next ron paul, he is just the name my protest vote is going to get. Whatever we all decide to do, remember, we all are individuals, lets just vote how we will vote and move on to 2014.

SWANN 2014!!

Would you change your tone

if Gary Johnson gets the polls high enough to debate and participate in rallies to push forward and started to spread the message?

At this moment there is no way to know if Gary is going to be in all 50 states. Pennsylvania, Iowa, and Maine are now being hit by the Romney campaign to remove Johnson from the ballot.


If RON PAUL doesn't run 3rd party, we should vote for GARY JOHNSON. RON PAUL will not be on all the ballots. We could write him in, but who or what state is going to count write-ins. I say we urge someone to UNITE US, because RON PAUL will not endorse anyone or give any further direction. Lets unite with RALPH NADER and secure our vote for GARY JOHNSON. We need to hold the GOP responsible for their corrupt actions (changing the rules, not seating winning states elected by the people, refusing to read RON PAUL'S tally from the floor, and turning off the mike when his votes were read). The RNC working in behest for MITT ROMNEY did such a disservice to the PEOPLE OF THE UNITED STATES, by literally giving the power to a group of fat men to determine winners and losers. Now NO grass roots candidate will ever be elected or recognized, because the people have no voice. For this, we will hold the GOP accountable, by uniting our votes with RALPH NADERS. They will only conform if you have the votes. SEND A MESSAGE...SEND A MESSAGE...SEND A MESSAGE and vote for GARY JOHNSON. The GOP needs to be held accountable for their actions...if not for anything, THE PEOPLE.

Your vote will be in thier system!



If your state counts write-ins, vote for Ron Paul.

If your state counts write-ins, vote Ron Paul. That "quantifies" it all. If not, vote Johnson or constitution party, depending your view on abortion.

The Difference Between Dr. Paul and Gary Johnson is...

...that Dr. Paul believes in liberty for ALL people --born and unborn. Gary Johnson is for abortion "rights" I could never vote for a candidate who is pro-death. Seems my protest vote is to not vote at all. Why prop up farce elections?

Why I can't support Gary Johnson

He is no champion rights of the unborn. This was an important selling point for me and the good doctor though even we were only 95% on the same page. I will never vote for a pro-choice candidate. Abortion is murder, and while the states have jurisdiction in cases of murder their rights need to be affirmed and protected by our leaders and laws.

"For this is the will of God, that by doing good you should put to silence the ignorance of foolish people. Live as people who are free, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but living as servants of God."
(1 Peter 2:15-16)

I am perpetually amazed that

I am perpetually amazed that abortion shows up in the top few political issues every cycle. Simply mind-boggled that both sides focus so much energy on this one issue. Economy? Yes. Foreign affairs? Yes. Civil liberties? Yes. Taxation and spending? Yes. Monetary policy? Yes. Domestic security? Yes. And the list can go on...

More to the point, what rights do the unborn really have if they are ultimately born into a tyrannical society? We need to get our house in order first.

I am personally aligned with Dr. Paul on this issue, but for me abortion is so far down the list that I can still see Gary Johnson as a terrific backup plan.

Edit: Before I get flamed, I should probably clarify that I fully believe Johnson's views on abortion will make zero difference on the implementation of abortion policy in the US. As President he would not be able to erode the rights of the unborn child, and I really don't think he would veto legislation that helps move abortion law to the states. So, while anti-abortion I do not believe that voting for Johnson is opposed to my views.

Are you afraid GJ might WIN

Are you afraid GJ might WIN and make abortions legal again? I could understand your position IF abortions were illegal and there was a chance GJ might make them legal, but we could not be any worse off then we are now regarding abortion!

If you've voted at the presidential level in the last 30 years, you've obviously supported a pro-death candidate, as abortion has never been really attacked.

GJ positions are totally irrelevant! He WILL NOT win. I know WE sort through each candidates most obscure vote, but 99% of the public NEVER look beyond a few key party points. Since GJ will NOT win, all it will do is get people familiar with a few key points of the liberty platform, and MOST importantly, open some eyes and SWELL our numbers even more. Ron Paul ran as the Lib candidate in 1988.

Using one vote to send a message is a fool's dream

A no vote isn't meant as a protest vote. It is a refusal to consent to a corrupts system. I don't care if anyone notices.

The rest is fortune telling as a basis for risk management.

Free includes debt-free!

I'm surprised more people aren't already on board with Gary

I'm about to go all in on the Johnson campaign. Simple logic here: Ron Paul's not on the ballot as a third party, unlikely to get the nomination for Republican ticket (all lawsuits and resistance aside). Writing Ron Paul in won't be counted in many places, so the next best Ron Paul-esque liberty candidate (who IS on the ballot) is GARY JOHNSON! Keep infiltrating the Republican party, stay Republican - but get everyone to use basic logic here and recognize Gary Johnson as a far superior candidate than Romney or Obama!

This is a dual tactic: Infiltrate Republican Party, but vote for the best libertarian on the ballot - and we need to unify behind one libertarian candidate and not split the libertarian vote too much. Ron Paul could have gotten the nomination, but we need a solid plan of who to vote for now since he didn't get it!


"The world has never known more oppressive governments or bigger governments than those which profess the cult of liberty." - Donald Sanborn

me to

I'm going to put my money where my mouth is. Already have. I went all in for RP for our household and I'm well on my way for Gary. Something has to give, this central planning dam is springing leaks faster than they can generate wampum to plug it. We can be the first free society to reverse the degeneracy if we want it bad enough.