The Party of Principle* (some exclusions may apply)
It would be best if people would stop conflating the compromise that comes with governing a constituency with the decision to dilute the Libertarian message to reach more people and get elected. They are two completely different and distinct concepts. I think most mature members of the LP realize that none of the Libertarian candidates for president, if elected, will have it all their own way. They will have to work with congress, the states, etc. and they will also need to lead Americans towards a Libertarian future, not force them there at gunpoint.This very real concept is distinct from what is being proposed by the Johnson/Weld ticket and its supporters. They speak of presenting a moderate, diluted message for the purpose of moving to the middle and attracting more potential voters. Here, the compromise isn't made through negotiations at the seat of government. It is made in advance, for free, and with no concessions necessary. And at the cost of Principle.By all means advocate for this course if you believe in it. But stop trying to confuse your fellow Libertarians by referencing the nature of governing and the attendant compromises there. Message dilution has nothing to do with governing - it concerns the face of the Libertarian Party and the level of commitment to transparency.The pivotal question of the 2016 nominating convention now appears to be this: Should the LP present a sanitized and hobbled interpretation of the Libertarian message, apologizing for it while it is delivered, in an effort to attract more voters? Is this appropriate, and consistent with party bylaws and the Statement of Principles? My reading of both tell me no.The saddest part from my perspective is that it is my prediction (just an opinion - I will not attempt to prove it) that if this course is adopted it will fail anyway. After such a loss the LP membership would not even have self-respect as a consolation.These are important concepts for delegates to consider before voting. There are other ways to get elected which haven't been tried and would not entail diluting the message. And we have candidates that are proposing to try some of them this year in a climate where success is very possible.Full disclosure: Rob Loggia is involved with the John McAfee campaign. This opinion piece is his alone and NOT a statement from the McAfee Campaign.