Libertarian Party registration surges, while Democrats and Republicans shrink
Libertarian Party registration has grown by nearly 25 percent in the past year while Republican and Democratic registration continues to shrink, according to a report in Ballot Access News. In 2016, the Libertarian Party increased to over 511,000 registrants. Ballot Access News points out that the Libertarians are the first U.S. political party other than Republicans and Democrats to have reached that milestone. Meanwhile, GOP and Democratic registration continues to shrink.
Polling by Rasmussen Reports indicates that voters are increasingly receptive to a competitive third party, with more than half of voters now saying that they have voted for a candidate outside of the Democrats and Republicans. Rasmussen reports that 13 percent of voters have switched parties or gone independent.
"The Republicans and Democrats are bickering over whose candidates are more compromised by Russia. Both are," explained Libertarian National Committee Chair Nicholas Sarwark. "They're arguing about whose health insurance bureaucracy is most disastrous to Americans' health care. Both are awful. Both Democratic and Republican policies are careening us toward economically impoverishing trade wars, and violent wars that put our very lives at risk. Libertarians offer the only common-sense solutions of freedom to live and trade in peace."
LNC hires radio and publishing veteran Richard Fields as press secretary
The Libertarian National Committee is pleased to announce the appointment of Richard Fields as LNC press secretary.
"More than 40 people applied for the position," said LNC Executive Director Wes Benedict. "LNC Chair Nicholas Sarwark and I interviewed 20 of the top applicants by phone. We were impressed. It was great to see so many highly qualified applicants interested in working for the Libertarian Party. After careful consideration, we decided that Richard Fields of Davis, Calif., was the best fit for our needs."
Fields has been involved in radio and publishing for 37 years, including 10 years as an owner and operator of radio stations in Texas. For the past 11 years, he has been a development officer at Pacific Legal Foundation, a non-profit organization that provides pro bono defense of property rights, the right to earn a living, and other constitutionally protected individual rights.
Will Republican failure to repeal Obamacare benefit Libertarians?
Last week, Senate Republicans trotted out three different prescriptions to the public-private boondoggle that is Obamacare, with each one failing despite a GOP majority in the upper chamber of Congress.
President Donald Trump's quite literal use of the bully pulpit backfired within his own party.
Sarwark commented in a recent CNN interview, "I have to give thanks to Donald Trump and the Republican Party. Their success in getting control of government and then showing that they can't do anything once they have that control has been a better argument for joining the Libertarian Party than anything I could say."
Libertarian mayoral candidate Gary St. Fleur scores major win for Scranton taxpayers
Aug. 4 marked a major victory for tax-cutters, and especially taxpayers, when Judge James Gibbons sided with Libertarian mayoral candidate Gary St. Fleur and seven other Scranton, Penn., residents who filed a lawsuit against the city over excessive taxation.
The suit contends that the city of Scranton has been illegally taxing its residents by increasing local taxes past the limit imposed by the state's Act 511, which places a cap on the amount of taxes that can be raised at the local level.
Scranton officials have argued that, because the city has a home-rule charter, it does not have to obey Act 511. Judge Gibbons, who oversaw the hearing, disagreed. In his eight-page ruling, he explained that Scranton's home-rule charter is subservient to state law, and thus the cap on Act 511 taxes "cannot be superseded by the home rule charter law."
"This victory confirms that Scranton financials are so dire that city officials have resorted to illegal taxation," St. Fleur said. "It forces the city to confront the reality that they have run out of time and can no longer force taxpayers to bail out the city."
LNC chair speaks at huge Fancy Farm gathering in Kentucky
Every year, St. Jerome's Parish in Mayfield, Ky., holds the Fancy Farm Picnic, a community event with barbecue, games, a 5k run, and political speeches. The event was designated by the Guinness Book of World Records as the "world's largest picnic" in 1985, and although it has long been dominated by Republicans and Democrats, this is the third year that the Libertarian Party of Kentucky has been invited to have a presence at Fancy Farm, with an official booth and participation in the lineup of speakers. LP National Chair Nicholas Sarwark represented LP Kentucky by speaking at the picnic on Saturday, Aug. 5.
"I'm sad that I didn't get an opportunity to shake Sen. McConnell's hand, because he had to rush on out of here," Sarwark said during his remarks at the Fancy Farm event. "And I wanted to say 'thank you' to him because the work that Sen. McConnell and the Republican Party, that controls both houses of Congress and the presidency ... the work that they're doing recruiting for the Libertarian Party is better than anything I could've ever done. There's no better answer for people who ask, 'Why shouldn't I be a Republican?" than watching them take both houses of Congress and the presidency, and they can't even repeal the bill they've been talking about repealing for seven damn years."
LNC chair reports 'unprecedented traction' for LP in Washington Times column
Libertarian National Committee Chair Nicholas Sarwark was quoted in Jennifer Harper's Inside The Beltway column in the Washington Times on July 26:
"The Libertarian Party has joined the political fray, spurred on by the prospect of the 2018 midterm elections," Harper wrote in her column. "Libertarian National Committee Chairman Nicholas Sarwark reports that his party got 'unprecedented traction' at FreedomFest, a recent libertarian and conservative policy gathering in Las Vegas. He also came away with $36,000 in donations."
Coverage of the Libertarian Party at the annual event also included Sarwark's remarks featured prominently in a high-profile CNN segment.
KRMG radio article highlights Libertarian Party ballot access in Oklahoma
It's a historic time for the Libertarian Party in Oklahoma, because its newfound recognition as a political party by the state government means that Libertarian candidates will appear on the ballot as Libertarians for the first time since 2000, and the Oklahoma gubernatorial primary ballots will feature the Libertarian Party for the first time in the party's history. KRMG radio in Oklahoma City highlighted this positive new choice for Oklahoma voters in an Aug. 1 article.
"It appears that for the first time in eighty years, Oklahoma's gubernatorial primary elections in 2018 will feature candidates from three parties," wrote KRMG journalist Russell Mills in the article. "As of March, 2016 the Libertarian Party is officially recognized by the state of Oklahoma, and its candidates can appear on ballots."
The Oklahoma LP collected more than 42,000 signatures in 2015 and 2016 to secure ballot access — a tremendous undertaking that ensures Oklahoma voters will be able to vote for Libertarian candidates who are identified by the party label on their ballots.