Written by Mitchell Turner
Recently in the Libertarian community, a debate over whether public officials who are Libertarian should run in either the Republican Party or the Libertarian Party have increased.
The best way for Libertarians to reach a national relevance, we should focus on our differences between the major two parties and highlight what makes us so unique.
Libertarians should run in the Libertarian Party because of the differences from the GOP in marijuana legalization, foreign policy, and government spending.
The first difference between Libertarians and the GOP is marijuana legalization.
One of the major pillars of Libertarianism is self-ownership, and it is clear that the GOP disagrees with Libertarians on this issue. Given that candidates in the GOP who supported marijuana legalization such as Dr. Ron and Rand Paul have never gone past the Primaries. With this and the appointment of Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who wants to bring back “Just Say No” and has called marijuana “only slightly less awful” than heroin. It does not seem the GOP is coming around to the idea of marijuana legalization anytime soon.
The second difference between Libertarians and the GOP is a non-interventionalist foreign policy.
With neo-cons such as John McCain, past GOP nominee for the POTUS. It is clear the GOP is for an interventionist foreign policy thus promoting nation building, regime change, drone strikes and endless, unwinnable, and unconstitutional wars in the Middle East. According to the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity, drone strikes have gone up 432% since Trump took office as of March 9th. The recent actions of the GOP regarding foreign policy and international affairs have far differed from the Libertarian ideal, and the difference is quite noticeable.
The third difference between Libertarians and the GOP is government spending.
The GOP has a habit of being against government spending and for small government while Democratic Presidents are in power, and than flip-flopping when they take control. Donald Trump has made it clear he will still continue the current entitlement spending and increase military funding all while cutting taxes and seems to show little concern for the massive national debt we will continue to pile up. This lack of fiscal responsibility in the GOP is entirely different from that of the Libertarian party and should be taken into account.
For these reasons, we can conclude that the GOP is not the best instrument to advance liberty for public officials. It seems the best route is to advance liberty through our unique party and spread our message of economic freedom, personal freedom, and limited government to people on both sides of the aisle and continue to fight for liberty.