Wednesday, November 09, 2016

The Libertarian Party Dodged a Bullet ...

According to Dave Leip's Atlas of US Presidential Elections, the Libertarian Party's 2016 presidential ticket (Gary Johnson and William Weld) received 3.23% of the national popular vote yesterday. That might shift around a little as late returns filter in, but probably not much.

If the ticket had blown past 5% of the vote, the party's 2020 nominee would have been eligible for a multi-million dollar federal welfare check. At that point the immediate existential question facing partisan Libertarians would have been "can the party find a way between now and 2020 to forbid its nominee to accept those funds, or is a new libertarian political party needed to replace one that's now a few election cycles away from, and on rails to, de facto extinction?"

3.23% is far better than any past LP ticket has done (and 0.93% better than my prediction), and it buys us at least four more years to work on making the Libertarian Party libertarian again. Pretty good outcome all around!

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