Libertarians are shaking up the two-party paradigm. Everyone in Wake will be able to vote for at least three Libertarian candidates. Across the state, early voting has topped one million, 25% of the electorate, and may set a new all-time record.
And for the first time in anyone’s memory, two groups who usually lock-step support one of the establishment parties – no matter how high Libertarians score in their candidate questionnaires – broke their patterns.
Libertarian candidates earned a recommendation from Grass Roots NC, the state’s only no-compromise gun rights advocacy group. GRNC usually recommends Republicans, regardless of the Libertarian candidates rating, because “Libertarians can’t win.” But they broke out of that rut this year. Not only did they recommend Libertarian candidates, but in two cases did so over the incumbent Republican who they labeled "anti-gun."
In Wake's NC House 35, GRNC recommended Libertarian Michael Nelson over Republican Chris Malone. David Perry, in New Hanover’s NC House 19, also achieved that distinction over Republican Ted Davis. Brian Lewis (NC Senate 15), and Brian Irving (NC Senate 16) also got the GRNC nod in Wake.
Unfortunately, GRNC fell back into its old pattern in NC House 49. Although they acknowledged Libertarian Jonathon Horst scored higher (by five points) than the Republican David Robertson, the still endorsed Robertson because – wait for it – he’s the candidate “most likely to beat” the “anti-gun” incumbent Democrat Cynthia Hall. We’ll see.
On the other side, NORML, the leading marijuana legalization advocacy group, gave several Libertarian across the state A ratings. Included are Brian Irving (NC Senate 16), Cap Hayes (NC House 34), Michael Nelson (NC House 35), Robyn Pegram (NC House 36), Martin Matuszewski (NC House 39), David Ulmer (NC House 40), Jonathan Horst (NC House 49), and both Wake Congressional candidates, Barbara Howe (CD 4) and Jeff Mateum (CD 2).
Bruce Basson (NC Senate 17) and Travis Groo (NC House 11) each got a B+ and Brad Hessel (NC Senate 18) got a B. Although not an endorsement, this is another example of a group that traditionally supports one of the establishment parties giving fair treatment to Libertarians.
We hope you are helping a campaign by canvassing neighborhoods or working the early votes sites in the few days remaining. If not, there is still time to volunteer. Contact Brad Hessel.
In the last days of early voting – and especially on Election Day – many voters arrive at the polls undecided. They're open to hearing the Libertarian message. So the impact of meeting a libertarian or better yet a Libertarian candidate, who can tell them they have an alternative to the Democratic and Republican tribes, will be greater.
Meeting voters at the polls works. It increases our vote totals. Working even a few hours can make a difference.