Monday, September 17, 2018

Florida Libertarians run no statewide candidates

A new strategy for Libertarian Party of Florida: no statewide candidates - WMNF 88.5 -  Seán Kinane:

July 19, 2018 - "Four years ago the Libertarian Party of Florida ran candidates for statewide office, placing third in races for governor and attorney general; but something changed this year: there are no Libertarian candidates running for governor or any cabinet office in Florida....

"Ryan Ramsey, the Bradford County chair of the Libertarian Party of Florida ... says it’s a new strategy by the party to focus on winnable local elections and building a team of experienced campaigners....

"'A governor’s campaign or an attorney general campaign, if you have a great candidate — even if you know you’re going to get a low percentage of the vote — is a good way to get your message out there.... Adrian Wyllie was an excellent candidate for governor (in 2014). He ... got me interested in the LPF by seeing him out there. So, it can be beneficial, but for the most time it’s not. If your candidate is not really charismatic and good it could almost hurt you.

"'[T]he goal of the Operation First Step is to run large amounts of candidates for smaller offices: counties, localities. And also to put an eye on unopposed seats, or even vacant seats. I’ve actually got some guys I installed on the Bradford County Soil and Water Conservation District because it was vacant seats... They ... met with the body ... and ended up getting appointed [laughs] by the current Soil and Water Conservation District. So, on June 22nd [closing of qualifying for candidates in the 2018 election] ... basically they’re going to be elected....

"'I’ve got a mayor of Newberry, Florida, over in my Alachua affiliate. I’ve got all sorts of county-level candidates. That’s basically the reason that you’re not seeing a lot of these statewide races. We’ve got a few guys running for [State] House.

"'The idea: we want to build a cadre of qualified candidates for statewide offices and House and Senate races in the state.... The idea is to get more people involved, let the cream rise to the top, empower people in their local communities where 70% of the laws that affect your business and your life really happen.

"'The big difference you’re going to see is: you’re probably going to have a local campaign that you can support and go meet the people and get yourself involved in.... And that’s another thing ... if we have dozens and dozens of campaigns for smaller offices, all those people are going to gain experience in being a campaign treasurer or doing the social media outreach for the campaigns or all these various things that campaigns need to succeed. So, it’s basically  training a cadre of both candidates and staffers to really build the party and take it to the next level....

"'So basically we have a plan to focus locally over the next couple of cycles. And then we’re going to break into the State House and then a couple of cycles later start trying to break in to the Federal government.'"

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