Wednesday, November 21, 2012

The GOP’s growing Libertarian problem

The GOP’s growing Libertarian problem - Aaron Blake and Shaun Sullivan, The Fix, Washington Post:

November 20, 2012 - "It was a historic election for the Libertarian Party.... Libertarian presidential nominee Gary Johnson took about 1 percent of the vote, winning more raw votes than any Libertarian candidate ever has (about 1.2 million)....

"On the Senate front, Libertarian candidates pulled around 6 percent of the vote in two key contests in Montana and Indiana — the party’s best showings in three-way Senate races in at least the last decade ... in those two races and seven others, the Libertarian candidate’s share of the vote was actually bigger than the victorious Democrat’s margin of victory.

"The suggestion some make, of course, is that these Libertarian candidates can — and in some cases might have already — cost Republicans winnable seats by siphoning off GOP votes....

"The question from here is whether the Libertarian Party continues to be an occasional nuisance, or whether it continues to build on its nascent progress and becomes a real headache for the Republican Party.

"Given the GOP’s ongoing problems with its brand, it’s not hard to see voters continuing to desert that brand and pick an increasingly valid third-party option."

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