Steve G.

Bob Barr gets Libertarian Party some publicity!

In Libertarian Party-US, Libertarian Politics, Media, Politics, Presidential Candidates on September 18, 2008 at 8:43 am

From CQ Politics:

Barr Misfires As a Libertarian
by Craig Crawford

It is too bad the Libertarians blew it in nominating Bob Barr for president. Too bad because a party that truly believes in personal freedom and limited government is worth hearing from in these days of major parties that equivocate and prevaricate on those principles.

But in Barr, a former Georgia congressman who once accidentally fired a revolver at a fundraiser, Libertarians have ended up with a loose cannon whose record isn’t even that strong on the party’s ideals. For instance, how can someone who claims authorship of the Defense of Marriage act now claim to be a libertarian?

In recent days Barr has further burnished his nutty reputation and made his newfound party look like a joke. He appeared in federal court as part of a ridiculous lawsuit against Michael Bloomberg, charging the New York mayor with defamation against a gun club. He is in court in Texas promoting a bogus claim that John McCain and Barack Obama should not be on the state ballot in November.

And lately Barr has been publicly inviting former GOP presidential candidate Ron Paul, a onetime Libertarian nominee himself, to join him as running mate — even though Barr has already chosen one, internet gambling entrepreneur Wayne Allyn Root. (Apparently, Paul never returned his call.)

Combine all this with Barr’s pathetic fundraising and poor polling performance (which will cost him admission to the presidential debates) and you can see that Barr probably won’t even have a spoiler effect anywhere in this race.

The Libertarian gambit to raise the party’s profile with a better-known nominee than usual simply failed. The party ought to stay focused on building its base from the ground up, such as running stronger candidates for lesser offices, and one day its natural appeal to independent-thinking voters could really catch on.

  1. Too bad Crawford got so many of his facts wrong. I’ll let him slide on “already chosen one” (technically untrue, but given the nature of the deal that put Barr over the top, true enough for government work), but “bogus claim”? Yeah, it’s just “the rule of law”; that’s for the little people, not Obamessiah and Son of Cain.

  2. As an old libertarian activist once told me: “I don’t care what you say about me. Just spell my name right.” Does anybody really think Barr would get any so-called “earned media” if he didn’t do “nutty” things?

  3. So what else is new?

    Barr’s being screwed up by the LRC people around him and on LNC whose real aim is to sink the LP. His campaign is alienating many people destroying funds and media he could have had while creating media and finacial problems of his own.

    In my area Barr is getting less press than past candidates such as Browne and Badnarik Why? Those who write about us tend to like our message. They know we’re doing god work locally, Barr is actimng like the LP is irrelevant, so they tell me that they don’t want to embarrass the LP. So they remain silent.

    Also, in some cases they can’t get calls returned by Barr’s staff and so checked him out some more and were unhappy with what they saw.

    A lot of local Libs say they’re voting for Obama. since he at least has been clear on the pot issue and has specifics on tax reductions. Barr doesn’t because the LRC supporters removed the program process 2 conventions ago. That’s a lot of word of mouth he’s losing. He’s coming to the state soon with NO co-ordination with the local LP, and has ignored invitations to fundraisers or friendly media. I’m going , but I asked 20 local Libs to join up in a car caravan. They ALL said no thanks.

    The Paul people weren’t much better, unfortunately. A lot of noise but little that was practical. Many seemed more interested in disrupting or attacking local LP’s as impure than doing work to advance their candidate or get in office themselves, acting like the LRC/Barr folks who disrupt meetings saying the LP isn’t pragmatic but also refuse to do anything concrete. Sheesh.

  4. Hey, Craig Crawford! I used to work with (read as: for) him. Nice guy.

  5. Now Bob Barr wants Ron Paul as VP after Barr dismissed Paul’s Liberty forum.

  6. CQ is for all intents and purposes a house organ for official DC.

    Is the TX ballot suit really off base? Seems spot on to me.

    First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.
    Mohandas Gandhi

  7. True, Mr. Crawford got some facts technically wrong. No, Barr didn’t “choose” W.A.R. . . . the delegates in Denver did. However, Barr did ask that the delegates support W.A.R. for the V.P. candidate nomination.

    Also, I am not sure how he arrives at the idea that the lawsuit in Texas is predicated on a “bogus” claim. Filing dates WERE missed by the majors in Texas, but then, Barr’s campaign/LP missed deadlines in other states as well. Does Barr propose to let those slide? No, his campaign sues for HIS deadline misses!

    However, the claim that Barr misses the boat on fundamental libertarianism, “house organ” for the government notwithstanding is on target.

  8. It’s getting around as well.

    mention of this article at

    “Bob Barr Not Getting Much Traction
    Libertarian candidate Bob Barr, who potentially could be a spoiler isn’t getting anywhere. His fundraising and polling are pathetic. This may be in part because he doesn’t believe in Libertarian principles (such as keeping the government out of people’s private lives). He is unlikely to do as well as the 2004 nominee, Michael Badnarik, who got 0.34% of the national vote, just behind Ralph Nader at 0.38%.”

    These guys tend to get it pretty right on stuff, even if they tend to ignore third parties and totally ignored Dr. Paul. Their record in 2006 was 87% accurate on totals and 95% on race outcomes.

  9. “He is in court in Texas promoting a bogus claim that John McCain and Barack Obama should not be on the state ballot in November”


    Craig Crawford is clearly an emotionally charged IDIOT. Check your facts Craig before inserting foot in mouth.

  10. 1. A man can change his opinions, I have libertarian friends from both Democrat and Republican back grounds. It is possible for even a politician to step back and see things differently.

    2. Barr does have a legitimate claim, either that or Obama and McCain are above the law. Which is it?

    3. People attacking us must prove that we are becoming a real threat to the big two, so all is good.

    The Libertarian Party are people who have been fighting for Liberty and the constitution for 20 years longer than Ron Paul, either you believe in our cause or you don’t. By attacking us you only prove that you do not care about promoting the cause, just your own agenda. I am sure Ron Paul does not promote this behavior in you.

  11. Apparently we have not met, so please allow me to introduce myself. I’m ElfNinosMom, I own LFV, and I don’t care what anyone thinks of my “behavior”.

    It’s not my job to save the LP from itself, nor is it my job to make LP members feel good about their choices. The LP chose Bob Barr and Wayne Allyn Root, not because they are libertarians, but because you wanted publicity.

    Be careful what you ask for, because you just might get it.

  12. 10 Stecha

    The Libertarian Party are people who have been fighting for Liberty and the constitution for 20 years longer than Ron Paul . . .

    Wrong. Ron Paul began reading Hayek in the late 1960’s, and ran for congress (and won) in 1976. His support for freedom pretty much parallels (chronologically) the LP’s history.

  13. Stencha = moron.

    The LP was founded in 1971 when Nixon severed the dollar’s linkage to gold.

    Ron Paul became politically active at this same time.

    Ron Paul ran for Congress in 1976.

    Is this idiot saying the LP stretches back to 1956?


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