Politics, n. A strife of interests masquerading as a contest of principles. The conduct of public affairs for private advantage. – Ambrose Bierce, The Devil’s Dictionary
Friends Of Liberty,
Primary election results are often sobering, and a time of reckoning for Libertarian candidates. With a “top two” system, ballot access restrictions and a variety of onerous procedural requirements designed to benefit the duopoly, Libertarians are fighting an uphill battle, and have been for nearly 50 years.
When the LP was conceived in 1972, we stood for gay marriage and decriminalization of marijuana. Both of those things are now a reality, and proof that “culture is upstream of politics”. While we’re busy engaging in the culture as activists and as a community, we will continue to participate in politics – running to make our point, to give voters a desperately needed alternative, to raise our profile as a party and to pave the way for the next candidates. We can and do win elections around the country, too.
Based on the data provided by the Washington Secretary of State’s Office as of 8/10/20, I can report that:
· The election had about 50% turnout, 2.3M ballots counted out of an eligible 4.6M
· Overall, Libertarians captured 455,622 votes or, 1.63% of the total volume of votes.
· The majority of those were driven by the Welti vote – nearly 300K. This is proof that an unapologetic Libertarian message can and does resonate with voters if we are committed to spreading it.
· Welti’s vote tally is even more impressive when you consider that he’s (as of this writing) earned 84% more votes than Gary Johnson did in WA as a presidential candidate in 2016, with half the turnout.
Of our 11 endorsed candidates, 3 have made it into the general election:
· Marliza Melzer, running in LD33 for State Representative, Position 2 (in our own King County), 22.29%
· David Wiley, running in LD38 for State Representative, Position 2 - 30.82%
· Brett Borden, running in LD9 for State Representative for Position 1 - 21.14%
Congratulations to all three! Please do support them with your time, energy and money.
We should also report on a strong showing by Dan Driscoll, running for Pacific County Commissioner in District 2.
To those who aren’t moving on, we thank you for running. It takes tremendous courage to participate in politics as a candidate, and we’re all grateful for your example.
We’re not going anywhere. LPKC is stronger and more vibrant than ever. We’ll continue to target winnable races, and run on the issues that truly resonate with voters. If you haven’t run for office yet, but are thinking about it – reach out. If you have, and you want to run again – reach out. We’ve raised thousands of dollars for candidates this year, and we’re just getting started.
And that’s not all. Liberty is spreading: momentum is building around the state to get other county parties up and running. Libertarians like Layla Bush, Anna Johnson, Whitney Davis and Bess Byers are making a huge impact on everything from ballot access, to campaigns, to events and communications, and social media.
We’re more inclusive, energetic and enthusiastic than ever, and we’re not letting COVID or anything else hold us back. We’re learning, and growing – and coming back for more. Now is the time to stand up and get involved – donating whatever you can, even if it’s only your likes and shares on social media.
Nathan Deily, Political Director, LPKC