Steve G.

An LFV Exclusive!

In Libertarian on August 6, 2008 at 1:44 pm

Chris Bennett to be Libertarian VP Candidate

Libertarian Party of New Hampshire Presidential candidate George Phillies today gained a running mate. Chris Bennett of Springfield, Illinois completes the Libertarian Party ticket. “I am delighted to have Bennett on board,” Phillies said. “He is a wonderful campaigner. His fine Libertarian positions speak for themselves.” Bennett, speaking on his positions, said “I am strongly against the invasion and the ‘police action’ in Iraq. I am against a Fair Tax and I will continue to fight to decrease the tax burden for all Americans. I will continue to fight to restore our civil liberties and constitutional rights and fight to eliminate the Patriot Act, the Real ID Act, and the Military Commissions Act. As an African-American, I will use my candidacy to recruit more minorities and women into the libertarian movement. As a recent college graduate, I will continue to convince younger voters and non-voters that the Libertarian Party is the future.”

Bennett has been a Libertarian Party volunteer since 1991. In 2004 he was active in the Libertarian Presidential campaigns of Aaron Russo and Michael Badnarik. He is currently the campaign manager for Larry Stafford, the Libertarian candidate for US Senate in Illinois, and is the Libertarian Party of Illinois Legislative Chair. He serves as a campaign adviser for the Boston Tea Party’s Jay/Knapp Presidential Ticket.

Christopher Dean Bennett, 35 was born in Cedar Rapids, Iowa in 1972. He now lives in Springfield, Illinois with his wife Evonne and children Charity, 9, and Brandon, 7. Bennett graduated from the University of Illinois at Springfield on May 10th, 2008, with a political studies degree with a minor in economics. He had previously attended Heritage High School in Littleton, Colorado, class of 1990.

  1. I will use my candidacy to recruit more minorities and women into the libertarian movement.

    But, presumably, not into the Libertarian Party

    which very recently Chris called “a party that doesn’t deserve me”.

  2. Susan, Chris quits the LP all the time. Using the LP of Illinois as any kind of positive reference to bolster a campaign is pretty stupid. The LP of Illinois is completely absent and consistently are less engaged in Illinois politics since they peaked in 2002. They are just a bunch of do-nothings that like using fancy party titles to make them feel better about doing nothing.

    Illinois is probably the most corrupt state in the US but the Illinois LP sits silently by while it all happens around them without saying a word. They couldn’t even manage their own petition drive this year and still were able to waste $10,000 on bogus signatures due to incompetence. Money that could have gotten them more candidates on the ballot like Dan Druck and a few St. Reps., but it was flushed down the drain because they are incompetent.

    And the November results will probably prove that. Larry Stafford, with Chris running his campaign, will get their butts kicked horribly by Chad Koppie and Kathy Cummings. Unless they get off their butts and actually do the hard work of getting votes. Chris leaving the LP after November is probably a good thing for the LP when we see the vote totals.

  3. I love it when people ridicule me on blogs and keep themselves anonymous when they do it. Show what cowards they really are.

  4. Dude, if you can’t take it without resorting to childish name calling, you are in the wrong business. Good luck in November. Let’s see you back up all your big mouth talk with real work and an intelligent campaign to beat Chad Koppie and Kathy Cummings.

    Cowards remain silent when the state is literally robbing from the citizens and locking them in cages. Cowards resort to name calling and side-stepping when faced with the truth. Cowards do little or nothing to challenge the status quo. What will you be between now and election day?

  5. Congratulations Chris, glad to know that you are now going to be on in two states, for at least a little while as we have the sigs collected for Mass, which have you on as the VP candidate… Should be no problem getting them turned in soon.

    (at least you are on until / unless the effort to replace George w/ Barr succeeds…)

    I also seem to recall from earlier postings that the problem sigs in IL were collected by folks hired by LNC under the direction of Sean “Firebug” Haugh. (Who didn’t want to hire competent pro’s like Fincher) – hardly seems fair to blame LPIL for that…


  6. Hardly seems competent to accept bogus signatures and not check them before paying for them. Sean wasn’t in Illinois that I am aware of. He should get some of the blame for spending the money and passing on good petitioners, as you say, but that doesn’t absolve LPIL of anything. Was it Haugh’s policy to pay for signatures before they were checked in Illinois? One wouldn’t think LPIL would be stupid enough to allow that to happen, IF it was all Haugh’s fault as is claimed. Looks like personal responsibility is being skirted to me when all the blame is pointed elsewhere.

  7. Yo! I collected in IL and didn’t get paid cause they said my sigs were forged, NOT! I want my money if others got paid for bogus sigs too. Who do I call?

  8. I was under the impression that Stafford was running against Durbin. Chad Koppie and Kathy Cummings?

  9. Wait, wait, wait! The Constitution and Green people? Are our standards so low that we only try to get more votes than them?

  10. Congratulations to George and Chris. Good stuff.

    Susan, of course Chris is recruiting libertarians for a libertarian party, not for a conservative party. Maybe if you would take some time off from sniping at him to actually fix your part, he could find a home in the LP again. But, until then, Chris will recruit just as he sees fit. if you have a problem with that, say so.

    The LP is not fit to be his home. What are you doing to make it worth being in?

    I haven’t seen anything from you except a lot of snarky comments. Yet, you wanted the Boston Tea Party’s endorsement. Odd.

    You let the conservatives and the reformers wreck your party. Don’t be surprised if more committed libertarians leave it.

  11. In Illinois, yes Mike, unfortunately. Their standards are so low they hardly even try to get on the ballot to begin with, even when they have no sig required ballot access in districts. The Greens got 5% in 06 while the LPIL sat on their heads until they picked a write-in candidate that got schooled badly by the Constitution Party. This year the Constitution Party is running more candidates than the LP once again. The CP has candidates for County races they can win and the LPIL didn’t try once again. The Greens are an established party in Illinois and light years ahead of the LPIL in organization, involvement, and campaigns. Its sad the LPIL is absent in such a horrible state with such great opportunities to challenge corruption.

    The Democratic Party of Illinois Chair who is the Speaker of the House also, put out a memo justifying reasons to call for the Democratic Governor’s impeachment. Not a word from LPIL calling out the Governor as if they condone how things are being run. The previous Republican Governor is sitting in prison right now. That is how bad Illinois is. That is why the Greens got 10+% for Governor in 06 while LPIL did nothing to take advantage of the perfect situation. LPIL standards are even lower than you can imagine.

  12. I live in Illinois, I know what the state of the state is now. The Republican Party is dead, and who knows who will run for Governor with them. The Democratic party is split in two statewide. The Hadigan/Blagojevich divide is also electrified by the Cook County sales increase, which is driving businesses out.
    Now I’ve been wondering where the Illinois LP is for months. This is the biggest opportunity in years. The Green Party in Illinois has a huge slate of candidates, and the Constitution Party is at least trying to grow.
    Maybe there’s just not enough candidates. I don’t know, but Libertarians in Illinois don’t have much to look up to.

  13. The LP is not fit to be his home.

    Then why does he want to be its candidate?

    You let the conservatives and the reformers wreck your party.

    I suspect that I ‘let’ that happen just as much as Chris did. Perhaps somewhat less.

    Don’t be surprised if more committed libertarians leave it.

    I’m not. I just wonder why anyone would want to be the candidate for a political party he considers ‘unfit’ and has vowed to leave.

    I am hoping this is part of a reconsideration of Chris’ earlier words, but the phrase “recruit more … into the libertarian movement” made me wonder. That is why I pointed out that sentence.

  14. Why, because he doesn’t need your permission, Susan. He has agreed to be George’s running mate, which seems to be something George can determine. You aren’t in NH so you don’t get a vote.

    I would expect that George and Chris are planning to run an active campaign to stick a knife in the eye of Bob Barr, metaphorically. Obviously, it is important to Chris and George to show the voters in Mass and NH what it means to be a libertarian, so they have something to contrast with Barr, who is a conservative.

    Yes, Chris is leaving your party. But, he hasn’t left yet. So, the choices he takes while he remains in it are up to him.

    And you still haven’t made it up to him sufficiently to change his mind. You still are busy taking pot shots here, rather than fixing your party. Your party sucks. Why won’t you fix it?

  15. Say, Mike Theodore, maybe you’d like to join the BTP of Illinois and help us identify worthy libertarian candidates to endorse?

  16. Yay!! Let’s show the world the kind of childish, moronic behavior the LP has by running a separate candidate in New Hampshire! Sweet!

    I hate Barr like the rest of you, but by pulling this L. Neil Smith crap, we’re only hurting ourselves even more for years to come.

  17. Jim, I don’t think there’s that many to endorse. Now, most people in Illinois barely give a hoot about the Libertarian Party. I doubt they’d really care about a break-off group endorsing a candidate.

  18. Now is the time to start executing plans for the 2010 state office races. A slate of Ron Paul Republicans in the Republican primary followed by a slate of good candidates in the General if needed, would be able to capitalize on the mess in Illinois. The IL GOP is ripe for the takeover in some sections of Illinois if that route is appealing, or whatever party slate that can run in the General should have a real chance at 5% and established party until 2014. Write off 08 in Illinois. All efforts should focus on the huge opportunity in 2010.

  19. Out of curiosity, Phil, how do you know?

  20. A slate of Ron Paul Republicans in the Republican primary followed by a slate of good candidates in the General if needed, would be able to capitalize on the mess in Illinois.

    Oh yeah, that’ll work.

    Let’s send our votes to the GOP, which will magically become libertarian as a result.

    Such posturing has paid HUGE dividends since it was first advanced in 1982. Why, we are very fortunate that libertarian Republican George W. Bush stood against the war in Iraq, and that House Republican Leader Ron Paul was able to stop DOMA and the PATRIOT Act in its tracks.

  21. Well you sure have to hand it to an anonymous poster that makes personal attacks on libertarians and their political prowess and then advances the solution of running “Ron Paul Republicans”…..hahahahahahhahahahhahahahhahahahhahahaha. As if that advances libertarianism at all or even works to any extent politically…hahahahahahahahahaha

  22. “…if that route is appealing…”

    Reading comprehension problems?

    Brian, Ron Paul was able to vote against DOMA and PATRIOT because he got elected. If being a Ron Paul Republican is appealing to some people, there will be a huge opportunity in Illinois in 2010 to get someone elected at the county or state level. There is no one right way to attack the powers that be. EVERY avenue should be used.

    John C. Jackson I’d suggest you expand your limited mind a bit and examine your assumptions.

  23. I just have to say that it is more cowardly than Chris will ever be to sit here and talk trash about someone Like Chris who has put a lot of his time into this party and not been treated well by it as have a lot of our long time older members and not even bother to put your name into your post . As for the comments about the lpillinois board members flaunting their titles and the like this is not true. Our board members work hard and do the work of a lot with very little help. We have a webmaster who does so much and doesnt ask for anything in return. Our treasurer also has done a lot if it werent for her we would still be in debt up to our eyballs because people left an office that we werent using and walked away from it without turning power off or shutting off phone lines and the like. We have had to deal with ED’s who couldnt even so much as keep a phone line up and running for the party and who didnt bother to tell the party that they needed the bill paid. Getting volunteers just to have the conventions is tough as well. You would think a guy who has his bachelor degree in political studies would be more listened to than he is. Chris has the experience and the know how to be a great libertarian and do great things within this movement its this party that is failing its people not the people who are failing the party. As far as ballot access and how we lost ours the last time around that was because we had no money to run a candidate because we had extremely high FEC fines to pay off as a result of something that had to do with the 2002 gubernetorial race. As far as our last Ballot drive instead of beating chris up and talking trash you should be thanking him for Catching those bad signatures and remember that the state of illinois had no choice in the Authorization of paid petitioners That was all Nationals doing. We put up with people calling us and asking for money that National wasnt giving them and Chris along with a job and school went to the state board of elections on his free time to check signatures hours went into this process and we should be greatful for this not rude and disrespectful.

  24. As far as our last Ballot drive instead of beating chris up and talking trash you should be thanking him for Catching those bad signatures and remember that the state of illinois had no choice in the Authorization of paid petitioners That was all Nationals doing.


  25. Ah yes, the Excuses, Justification, and Passing the Blame Party of Illinois that evidently can’t handle the thought of personal responsibility hasn’t changed a bit. Thanks Evonne for furthering my illustration that the LPIL is even more incompetent than I thought.

    But if everyone is working as smart and hard as you say they are, then we’ll see the results in November won’t we? Or will we then see someone else get blamed?

  26. So Colt what exactly is it you do for the Party are you a volunteer do you serve on the lpillinois board have you even tried to do something if your so unhappy get off your ass and do something about it and stop blaming guys like chris and the board of the Lpillinois. Lpillinois will be looking for some board members why dont you try running if your from illinois even.

  27. Evonne, is this type of drive-by piss-supersoaking really even worth dignifying by responding to it?

  28. paulie you are the smartest one here. I guarantee more time was spent today answering trolls on blogs and puffing up egos than on working to improve anything in LPIL. Another Chicago Alderman was convicted today. Where is LPIL’s response offering a better alternative? That’s right, an LPIL officer spent more time with blog trolls than paying attention to what is happening in the state and actually responding to it.

    Who in the world would be interested in wasting their time or efforts for the LPIL that you pointed out as being incompetent? You obviously are more interested in finding out you have no idea who I am than you are in promoting libertarian values today.

    What am I doing for the LPIL? Right now I am doing more than you are just by pointing out the incompetence and missed opportunities and failure of the LPIL. The best way to shut up critics and trolls is with results. Lets see those November results and shut me up.

    And what do you care, you are quitting the LP in November because it is soo awful, right? And some of your previous excuses are uninformed and just plain wrong. LP candidates can get on the ballot with one signature if they aren’t challenged in Illinois. They used to get LP candidates on the ballot all the time trying to sneak on. Some dude got on for Governor in 2002 without any sigs. And the current “board members” or whatever you want to call them, didn’t even attempt to try, yet you claim it is someone else’s fault? What am I doing for the LP? Exposing it since that is the only way to either put it out of its misery or get rid of the incompetent “leaders” that aren’t even trying right now.

    Evonne, why didn’t the LPIL try to get more candidates on the ballot even using the one signature method? Hint, any other answer but incompetence is wrong because that would’ve taken all of ten minutes to do. And you expect people to donate and volunteer to your party that won’t admit mistakes, blames everyone else but the actual people in charge, and doesn’t lift a finger to challenge the corrupt government in the state? I’m doing you a favor by pointing this out and if that is beyond your grasp, then good luck.

  29. And for those following along you should note that they aren’t disputing any of my claims (except they still maintain the $10,000 waste was ALL Sean Haugh’s fault which I will concede may be true although highly unlikely seeing as they won’t answer who was responsible for checking signatures before paying for them or why they couldn’t do their own petition drive without needing National to do it for them), instead all that can be managed as a response is being defensive with nothing to back it up. That is telling.

    I’ll see you at the debates bitches.

  30. your right paulie

  31. On a Phillies related note, this came out yesterday, I sent a copy in to the contributors address, but haven’t seen anything on it here yet…

    *Worcester County Chapter of the ACLU of Massachusetts*

    * 340 Main Street, Room 717,
    Worcester MA 01608*

    *Phone and fax (508) 752-5363*

    *Email: *



    *ACLU of Massachusetts Files Suit Seeking Ballot Place for Third Party Candidates*

    * *

    Massachusetts Elections Division refuses to place names of Libertarian Party’s nominees for President and Vice President on November ballot


    August 6, 2008


    John Reinstein (ACLUM) 617.482.3170

    George Phillies (Libertarian Party) 508.754.1859

    Ronal Madnick (Worcester County Chapter, ACLUM) 508-752-5363

    BOSTON – In a lawsuit aimed at ensuring the franchise for Massachusetts voters, the American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts has filed suit seeking ballot access on behalf of Bob Barr and Wayne A. Root, the candidates of the national Libertarian Party for President and Vice President of the United States. Despite earlier indicating that it
    would do so, the Massachusetts Elections Division has refused to place the names of the Libertarian Party’s nominees on the ballot.

    “The central issue in this case is the restriction of ballot access for third parties, which has been and continues to be a problem in Massachusetts,” said John Reinstein, Legal Director for the ACLU of
    Massachusetts, a non-partisan civil liberties organization.

    “The right of political parties or candidates to a place on the ballot bears directly on the right of citizens to vote. If parties or candidates are kept off the ballot, their adherents are compelled to vote for representatives other that those of their choice,” said Reinstein. “The denial of a place on the ballot thus constitutes a deprivation of the franchise.”

    In July 2007, Dr. George Phillies, the leading Massachusetts candidate of the Libertarian Party, wrote to the Massachusetts Elections Division
    to explain that he foresaw a potential problem: required signature gathering for placement on the Massachusetts ballot needed to begin before the national Libertarian Party’s nominating convention on May 25, 2008. Phillies asked about the possibility of substituting the name of the final Libertarian Party candidate on the ballot if the nominee selected at the party’s convention differed from the one submitted at the time of the signature-gathering deadline.

    The Massachusetts Election Division responded:

    If the Libertarian Party seeks to substitute a candidate for President who they already got signatures for on nominating papers, our Office can
    prepare a form that allows members of the party to request the substitution of the candidate.

    At the national Libertarian Party’s nominating convention on May 25, 2008, the party selected former U.S. Congressman Bob Barr as its nominee
    for president, and Wayne A. Root as its vice presidential nominee. Dr. Phillies, who finished fifth, re-contacted the Massachusetts Elections
    Division to inform them of the need for substitution. On June 5, 2008, the Division denied this request, stating that the party would need to repeat the process of signature gathering to place new names on the ballot.

    “The Libertarian Party sought to head off this problem well in advance. We are in this situation because we received mixed messages from the
    Elections Division of the Secretary of State’s office,” said Dr. Phillies.

    “Requiring smaller political parties to re-gather signatures for their final nominees is a significant and burdensome expense and thus serves
    as a barrier to their full participation in the electoral process,” said Carol Rose, Executive Director of the ACLU of Massachusetts. “We urge the Massachusetts Elections Division to ensure the right to vote by returning to its prior stance of allowing substitution of the final nominees on the ballot.”

    The plaintiffs in the suit are represented by ACLUM cooperating attorneys at the firm of Foley Hoag LLP, and by John Reinstein, Legal Director of the ACLU of Massachusetts.

    I hope the formatting hasn’t been screwed up to badly by the cut and paste…

    (It is also worth noting that this suit would have been far harder without George’s active help and cooperation in putting it together…)


  32. Hmm. Chris also says:

    I will continue to convince younger voters and non-voters that the Libertarian Party is the future.

    That’s a hopeful sign. I hope it indicates that the LP is Chris’ future as well as the future for those young’uns he intends to recommend it to.

  33. Is the LP the future for anyone? And wouldn’t it be up to those who plan to stay in it to make of it something worth recommending?

    If the future of the LP, as it would seem to be, to become a party of reprobate racists, sexists, homophobic haters, war enthusiasts, drug warriors, and invaders of other countries, what good is it?

    He said: “Kill it before it grows!”

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