Former GOP congressman Kerry Bentivolio running for the Libertarian Party vice presidential nomination, also considering run for Congress as a Libertarian

Kerry Bentivolio

On May 8th, 2016, Politics1.com, a well respected online comprehensive directory of political candidates and parties, tweeted “Ex-Cong Kerry Bentivolio (R-MI), a Tea Party activist, launches run for Libertarian Party’s VP nomination.”

Curious, I decided to reach out to Bentivolio, who represented the 11th congressional district of Michigan from January 2013 to January 2015, and ask him if he was indeed seeking the Libertarian Party’s vice-presidential nomination. In an email, Bentivolio confirmed that this news is correct and sent a link to the FEC website showing that he had filed to run for vice president with the Libertarian Party on May 7th, 2016. Bentivolio told me that he will be attending the LP national convention in Orlando, Florida, May 27th-30th. I then asked him who he would like to see as the LP presidential nominee, to which he replied:

I am not a Trumplican nor a Hillicrat.

I think any L candidate would benefit from my experience in DC.  There are 5 things you will have a difficult time finding in dc.  Truth, common sense, sense of humor, honest reporter and a parking space.

However, in my email conversation with him, Bentivolio focused on a different angle;  he is considering running for Congress again.

In this IPR exclusive, former Republican congressman Kerry Bentivolio told IPR today that he is considering running for Congress again as either a Libertarian Party candidate or an independent, should he not receive the Libertarian nomination. Bentivolio is a decorated veteran of both the wars in Vietnam and Iraq who was endorsed in his victorious 2012 campaign by Ron Paul and Rand Paul.

Bentivolio elaborated in an email to this IPR writer:

I would like to run as a Libertarian for the 11th Congressional seat like Ron Paul, Paul Ryan, etc. did when they ran for President and vice president for the GOP but it depends on the Michigan Libertarian convention this weekend. No matter what happens ‘yea’ or ‘nay’ I will run as an independent if need be.  I already have the 3000 signatures to get on the ballot as an independent.  It was nice to see when I paid my dues they listed it as a “renewal” of membership.

Bentivolio also included a May 3rd email from Libertarian Party of Michigan chairwoman Kimberly Moore concerning his membership status within the Michigan LP:

Kerry,

I am reviewing with our credentials person on this.  You have not been a national member before but you have been a state member, but it was not the state membership being renewed.  Let me check with her first and I’ll let you know if there will be any issues as the sign up on the national was not prior to 30 days in advance of the convention.

Kimberly

Bentivolio sent me the following exclusive press release:

For Immediate Release
KERRY BENTIVOLIO CONSIDERS CANDIDACY FOR CONGRESS

Stands for the People; Transparency, Accountability and Upholding the Constitution.
Milford – Michigan – Tuesday, May, 10, 2016 – Kerry Bentivolio of Milford, United States Representative for Michigan’s 11th Congressional District, in office from 2013 to 2015, decorated veteran of war and the only member of Congress to have served in both Vietnam and Iraq, is considering his candidacy for Congress.

“If we do not stand our ground now and demand accountability and transparency in government. If we do not stand our ground now and fight the corruption in our courts, in our mainstream media, if we do not stand our ground to defend our borders, fight socialist social engineering, the denouncing of our founding Christian values, our belief in family, our belief in wholesome hard work to achieve a vision of the American dream as a benchmark, a goal, the light of freedom will be lost and the blood and sacrifice to relight that flame will be in further blood and further sacrifice of innocent lives. It is time to protect and defend that flame not on foreign shores and distant lands but here at home.”

“The death of a nation happens with a whisper and a nudge, patently and stealthily, robbing its unsuspecting citizens of inalienable rights and replacing them with government controls is not the answer.  It is time for every able body man and woman to demand accountability and transparency in our government, to demand truth, respect, and with those concepts we can work together to restore liberty.  It is the duty of our elected to protect rights, not take them away. This is a battle worth fighting.”

“A war is raging for the soul of America. It is not a war of steel and cartridge. It is a conflict of ideas, fought not in trenches, jungles or a desert; instead, it is played out in town halls, roundtables, tea party and Liberty groups all across the nation. Instead of cannonades, there are editorials; instead of bombs, there are speeches; Instead of rifle volleys, there is education on the benefits of Liberty ordained by God protected by a United States Constitution.”

I am running to Restore liberty, not restrict it; Shrink government, not expand it; Reduce taxes, not raise them; Abolish programs, not create them; Promote the freedom and independence of citizens, not the interference of government in their lives; and Observe the limited, enumerated powers of our Constitution, not ignore them.  This is a pledge I made prior to serving as a US Congressman and I walked the talk. My official record proves it.

For more information on Mr. Bentivolio, please contact Press Secretary

During his congressional tenure Bentivolio received an “A” rating from groups such as the American Conservative Union, FreedomWorks, Council for Citizens Against Government Waste, the Club for Growth, and the Family Research Council. He was also named the second most transparent member of Congress by GovTrack.us. His high marks from conservative groups did not help him win reelection, though; Bentivolio lost his 2014 Republican primary to Dave Trott, earning 33.6% of the vote. He ran as write-in candidate in the general election, receiving 0.56% of the vote.

Bentivolio’s announcement of his vice presidential candidacy easily overshadows his potential congressional run, and makes him the highest profile individual currently seeking the 2016 Libertarian vice-presidential nomination. Other candidates for the LP VP position at this time include Will Coley (running jointly with presidential candidate Darryl W. Perry) and Judd Weiss (running jointly with presidential candidate John McAfee).

Bentivolio’s Facebook page can be found here.

160 thoughts on “Former GOP congressman Kerry Bentivolio running for the Libertarian Party vice presidential nomination, also considering run for Congress as a Libertarian

  1. Jeremy Siple

    Didn’t see that coming. Sounds like a Bob Barr “Libertarian”

  2. robert capozzi

    I’ve done NO research on this guy, but on its face, a VERY positive development, indeed.

    Surely a long list of NAP violations will be forthcoming, but in concept I love a L ticket of a former guy and a former MC.

  3. Thomas L. Knapp

    Interesting development.

    Given Congressman Bentvolio’s indication that he’s also interested in running for Congress, that would seem to me to be the more productive course for him. He’s already won such an election once and presumably has the name recognition in his district that he doesn’t nationwide.

  4. steve m

    reading his wikipedia entry, it seems like the congressman is a colorful individual

  5. Kerry Bentivolio

    Interloper? Perhaps I should reconsider and find a more ‘INclusive” rather than an another ‘EXclusive” party? Nay, no one gets a 100% score on every test. Nor receive a warm welcome at every event. But, I was born with 2 ears and one mouth, to ensure I listen twice as much, to improve myself in my pursuit of life long learning; To be a better person than I was yesterday, to ask good questions and search out truth, to discover the once hidden, that rare gold nugget, a warm hearted smile lighting up the room when all else is dreary I shall overcome all short comings, become stronger for having found it. I am not perfect, nor without flaw, bit I am better and smarter, wiser, than I was yesterday and the naysayers should think twice before self rightiousness overshadows and blurs vision. There is always more to every story, and more lessons to be learned. I’m in the fight and will welcome your help and I truly look forward to be the first libertarian VP or at least the first member of the US House with an ‘L’ afterhis name. Would that not be a hoot? I made my decision. Now it is time for you to make yours!

  6. Andy

    It is too early to even consider putting this guy on the LP presidential ticket. If the guy is serious about the LP let’s see what he does in the party and then reconsider him in 2020.

  7. Andy

    We have been burned by candidates before, so we should not nominate anyone until they have been properly vetted.

  8. Thomas L. Knapp

    Congressman Bentivolio,

    I suspect the “interloper” comment was meant as a joke. We’re like that around here.

    On the other hand, a lot of people will agree with Andy (myself included) that it’s a little sudden to come to one party from another party a couple of weeks before its national convention and shoot for the second-highest nomination we have to offer. We’ve been burned before on things like that (by both nominees on our 2008 ticket — they’re back with the GOP now), so please don’t blame us for being a bit gun-shy.

    My own comment — that your congressional race sounded more promising — wasn’t intended as a statement of ill will. You’ve been elected to Congress from that district before; on the Libertarian ballot line you might get sent back to Washington or you might not, but you’d at least be COMPETITIVE. The Libertarian Party’s like presidential election performance this year, regardless of whom we nominate, is in the 1% range. Your impact would simply be bigger for Congress in my opinion. But of course that IS just my opinion. Good luck with whatever you decide to go for!

  9. Kerry Bentivolio

    I love these questions and comments! Perhaps we should have an online townhall.
    Q1: how long have I had libertarian leadings? Apparently, when I read Ron Paul. Before leaving military service I had little interest in civilian politics.
    Ron Paul made sense and then someone said he was a libertarian disguised as a Republican. When one searches for truth being a Libertarian comes naturally, as it should. Q2: what I can do for the party then run in 2020? What we should be asking is what the party can do for people? During a senior event in my district a lady asked me what it felt like to be a VIP now? I replied I ran for office because I thought she was a VIP. Q3: rather the comment from my Wikipedia. If you were my student and submitted Wikipedia or the National Enquirer (Trump comments on Cruz’s father) as a resource or reference for a research paper you received an automatic “F”. It’s in my grading rubric.

  10. Jill Pyeatt

    I’d be happy to do an interview with you, Mr. Bentivolio, although Chris established a relationship with you yesterday and may wish to pursue that further. I am planning on sending interview questions to the other vice-presidential candidates later this week, since we’ve suddenly got several very interesting candidates.
    Let me know if you’d like to be included.

  11. steve m

    Good thing I am not your student. I am long past of writing term papers. As a candidate you had better be prepared for not only wikipedia but many other “poor” sources. You will be asked about their contents.

    Perhaps you would like to offer another biographical source?

  12. DJH2036

    I think the Libertarian Party needs to look past the former members of congress and former Governors for President/Vice President. For example- Justin Amash hates the two party system, has often voted AGAINST the GOP in favor of Libertarian principles, and is #NeverTrump. I’d much rather see Amash than this guy.

  13. Kerry Bentivolio

    Thomas, thank you. I was not offended. They are all honest good comments and I enjoy this dialogue using my cell phone. Running as a libertarian is not a snap decision. I have been suffering from PTCD. (POST TRAMATIC CONGRESSIONAL DISORDER). Serving as a member I thought about switching but my staff declined to support it. On Dec.4, 2014 i resigned from the GOP in a letter to speaker Boehner. A copy was posted online to my fb page. During my 575 mile, 29 day bicycle/walk to DC protesting the VA treatment of veterans I decided enough is enough. I want to fight back, there are things worth fighting for and ive got some fight still in me. I decided to run as an independent. A few libertarians suggested I run with them. Deadlines have a way of helping make decisions. Most battles are lost by indecision. I do not expect to lose if we are all in. I suspect people might come to their senses in this great political awakening. I very much want a libertarian to upset the apple cart in the electorial college as well as here in the 11th Michigan. Again, a feather in the cap of libertarians everywhere even if I am only 82% libertarian to some. I think I can bring in never Hillary and never Trump voters. With a proven record of Real conservatism.

  14. Kerry Bentivolio

    Trust that I am well prepared for negative whisper campaigns, lies, half truths and distortions of truth.
    I prayed about it and God responded with, “you should hear about what happened to my son!”
    Your job as an informed voter is Wade through the swamp. As the article points out I lost my seat. What it does not say is it cost him $2.4 million or $600 per vote for the 40,000 plus votes in the primary. I received half as many votes at $6.00 per vote. He spend another million for the general election making it a grand total of $3.4 million. It does not include the personal funds he paid out to lobbyists, donations to members of local, state and federal elected and the rumoured cash payments to members of the mainstream press (not proven, just a rumor.) And other groups

  15. Joe Wendt

    Why do I have a feeling there’s going to be a major push for a Johnson-Bentivolio ticket on Facebook? Granted, I actually like Kerry Bentivolio, and would definitely prefer Bentivolio for the Presidential nomination over Johnson or Petersen.

  16. Jill Pyeatt

    Kerry Bentivolio said: “With a proven record of Real conservatism.”

    I hope you realize Libertarians are only conservative in some areas. In other areas, we couldn’t be considered “conservative” at all. For example, our views on legalizing drugs and marriage equality are far different from what most conservatives belief. Also, we have some pro-life Libertarians, but I believe most of us identify as pro-choice.

  17. Kerry Bentivolio

    Drugs is a State issue. Not federal.
    I am 100% pro life. Why are we punishing people who mess with eagle eggs and not human eggs? Why are we selling body parts of aborted babies? Plus funding the crime with taxpayer dollars? Why are more black babies aborted than white? Pro-choice should be BEFORE not after. Libertarians promote “personal responsibility” and we should walk the talk. In the case of rape and incest I can not imagine the horror and my heart goes out to the victims, both mother and child. I have a hard time understanding why we kill the child because the father is a felon. The crime and the punishment is barbaric to me. I am responding using my cell and have fat fingers… Please forgive a few misspellings…

  18. steve m

    Congressman, You are going to have to run me through your math. It looks like David A Trott spent about 2.5 million on the 2014 primary. He received 42,000 votes which comes out to $62 per vote. You spent about $500K for 21,000 votes or $23.8 per vote.

  19. George Whitfield

    Welcome to the Libertarian Party, Mr. Bentivolio! I am very glad you have joined us. You impress me as knowledgeable, active and resilient. Best wishes to you on your campaigns.

  20. Kerry Bentivolio

    I stand corrected on math. Approximately $60 per vote. I raised $500,000 and paid out the majority to a snail mail fundraiser. They send you the money raised then a bill to cover the costs of raising the money. We actually spent $120,000 on the campaign. Approximately $6.00 per vote. My opponent did not need to raise funds.

  21. Richard Winger

    The best way to minimize abortion is to make birth control devices and information freely available. The Netherlands is a case study. The Netherlands has a very low abortion rate and The Netherlands makes birth control very, very easy to get, even for 12-year-old girls.

    Every person who wants to make abortion criminal should tell us if they advocate prosecuting the pregnant mother as an accessory to murder.

  22. Bud Fein

    ” I love a L ticket of a former guy and a former MC.”

    Caitlin Jenner and Ice T?

  23. Bud Fein

    “There is one other person running for vice-president of the LP: Alicia Dearn.”

    Is Mark Elworth Jr. still running?

  24. Jill Pyeatt

    Mark Elworth is NOT running. I do think there is someone else though. A male with three names? Does anyone remember anyone else?

  25. Jill Pyeatt

    Thanks, William! I actually thought the name was Kerry, but what are the odds of having two “Kerrys” on a short list? Funny coincidence.

  26. Kerry Bentivolio

    2nd part of question. Sorry cell went dead. I think there is a partial solution in prevention before it happens. I do not want a return of back alley abortioist. The mother should be punished if she had an abortion because she does not like the eye color or sex of the baby. We are a civil society and we should rush to the aid of both mother and baby to assist in whatever way we can? The real question is should we use taxpayers or private money? My mother in law served many years at a Catholic facility in the 50’s helping mothers. I don’t think institutionalizing is the answer but part of that can be applied in out patient services, education, medical, psych help, etc.

  27. Kerry Bentivolio

    I am a non-interventionist. I called out the president’s position on Syria and the article made the front page of Real Clear Politics. Check it out. I’ll try and have a copy for you at the Orlando convention.

  28. Kerry Bentivolio

    Also, the US foreign policy is an open book, usually a check book. I am a firm supporter of Treaties approved by the Senate with the House funding it. Giving money under the US Aid program is wrong without a fully vetted treaty.

  29. Andy

    “Kerry Bentivolio

    May 9, 2016 at 18:32

    Thomas, thank you. I was not offended. They are all honest good comments and I enjoy this dialogue using my cell phone. Running as a libertarian is not a snap decision. I have been suffering from PTCD. (POST TRAMATIC CONGRESSIONAL DISORDER). Serving as a member I thought about switching but my staff declined to support it.”

    That’s cool that you started reading Ron Paul and that it led you to the Libertarian Party. However, I think that you are too new to the party, and to libertarian activism, and you are coming on board too soon before our 2016 nominating convention, to be our party’s VP nominee. If you get active in the party and stick around I’d give you consideration for the 2020 VP slot depending on what you do between now and then.

    No offense, but like it says above, our party has been burned by candidates in the past, so I think that we need to be more careful about who we nominate, particularly when it comes to the highest profile offices.

    If you want to run for office as a Libertarian this year, perhaps you should consider running for your old US House seat, or for a seat in the state legislature, or for a local office.

  30. George Dance

    Welcome, Mr. Bentivolio. All I know about you is this story I ran 4 years ago, in which James Antle called you a “Ron Paul Republican”.
    http://gdspoliticalanimal.blogspot.ca/2012/11/ron-paul-republicans-win-house-races.html
    I hope you understand the treatment you’re getting from some is nothing personal. For every Libertarian who would love to see the surge in growth and support that would come from a mass influx of libertarian Republicans to our party, there’s another (sometimes even the same person) who’s worried what would happen to the party if that were to occur – and the latter are going to have concerns. The same thing is happening to Gary Johnson; it happened to Bob Barr 8 years ago; I remember it happening to Ron Paul 30 years ago. It’s just a natural reaction.

  31. Kerry Bentivolio

    Send me your email I will send you the affidavit from the attorney. It was GOP sponsored. I will post it on my website or something else. ..

  32. Jeremy Siple

    The candidates for VP are Kerry Bentivolio, Will Coley, Alicia Dearn, Kerry McKinnon, and Judd Weiss.

    Congressman Bentivolio, you say that drugs are a state issue. As a matter of principle, do you believe in states’ rights, or do only individuals have rights?

    And welcome to the party!

  33. Andy

    George Dance: “I hope you understand the treatment you’re getting from some is nothing personal. For every Libertarian who would love to see the surge in growth and support that would come from a mass influx of libertarian Republicans to our party, there’s another (sometimes even the same person) who’s worried what would happen to the party if that were to occur – and the latter are going to have concerns. The same thing is happening to Gary Johnson; it happened to Bob Barr 8 years ago; I remember it happening to Ron Paul 30 years ago. It’s just a natural reaction.”

    It is not just that this guy was a Republican, there are also the factors of no record as a libertarian activist or as a Libertarian Party member, and that he’s joining our party and announcing that he is running for our party’s VP nomination about 2 1/2 weeks before our national convention starts.

    Like I said above, we’ve been burned by candidates before (see Barr/Root 2008), so I think that we’d be wise to try to avoid being burned again in the future, and this guy is too new to the party and movement, and it is too close to the nominating convention for a proper vetting process to take place.

  34. Kerry Bentivolio

    Myy voting record speaks for itself. I tended to vote libertarian. I support the Constitution and 10th Amendment. The individual rights are explicit and come before state rights in most cases. Perhaps it is why it is #10? A civil war over state rights vs the individual took 500,000 lives. We could go into more detail but this isn’t the place for that discussion. Many people think state rights could allow for slavery, that blacks were somehow less than human. Much like many treat children in the womb as somehow less than human and have ownership of another human life? How barbaric! Responsibility yes, ownership no. Babies have rights in the womb just as and equal to those of a new born.

  35. Thomas L. Knapp

    At this point, my choice for the VP nomination is Will Coley. I’m willing to listen to the other candidates, of course, but so far I haven’t seen anything in particular that would pull any of them except Coley in front of NOTA for me.

  36. Kerry Bentivolio

    I voted libertarian in Congress. I am Kerry Bentivolio. Do not compare me to someone else who burned you. You sound like someone in the GOP or an elitist! You are better than that!

  37. Scott Lieberman

    I know Wikipedia is not **always** correct, but according to this article:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kerry_Bentivolio

    Mr. Bentivolio went out of his way to run against the Libertarian in a US House election in 2014. He will probably say he was running against the Democrat, but that is irrelevant. He could have helped the Libertarian if he had a beef against the Democrat, but instead he went out of his way to run against the Libertarian.

    I certainly welcome refugees from the major parties to join the Libertarian Party, but there is a difference between joining the LP, and asking us to nominate you for VP less than a month before our Convention.

    Check out his Wikipedia article. There is a lot of interesting drama in there.

  38. natural born American

    I started off on this thread supporting Congressman Bentivolio’s candidacy. Then I read his ugly comment shilling for the killers of JFK. Not so excited now.

  39. Barry Swift

    I missed that one, NBA. What timestamp was the comment about supporting JFK’s killer?

  40. Austin Cassidy

    This is from the Detroit News, a little over one year ago:

    http://www.detroitnews.com/story/news/politics/2015/02/26/kerry-bentivolio-bankruptcy/24053707/

    ——————————

    Former U.S. Rep. Kerry Bentivolio — after struggling for months with severe financial troubles — filed for bankruptcy protection Monday, listing nearly $300,000 in debts and unpaid bills.

    In his bankruptcy petition, Bentivolio listed $100 in cash and $200 in a savings account. The Milford Republican said he owes nearly $100,000 in mortgage payments, law firm Dickinson Wright almost $44,000 and nearly $1,800 in unpaid rent for his Washington, D.C., apartment.

  41. Dr. Steve T.

    Congressman Bentivolio seems like a he is in it for the right reasons. He is in to stay. VP nomination or not. I think I will be supporting the Congressman for Vice President. I still have a few more candidates to look at. Bentivolio was tossed from the GOP because he supported liberty and freedom over corruption and big government. I have never met Congressman Bentivolio, but I think he can also attract anti Trump conservatives and bring them to our party. Doing that will expose them to our beliefs and hopefully draw them in thus expanding our reach to new voters. Gary Johnson, ex Republican Governor of New Mexico and Kerry Bentivolio, ex United States Congressman from Michigan. Both represent the two sides of our party and will make the historical gains we desparetly need.

  42. Dr. Steve T.

    **Please excuse any typos. My phone has terrible autocorrect and I’m on a plane about to land in Boston!***

  43. Libertarian Voter

    I’m excited to see Congressman Bentivolio join the LP. I think the problem we face is we have Libertarians who are more conservative, like Bentivolio, and we have those who are more liberal, like Gary Johnson. Why not unite both spectrums of the party? I swear to God I don’t see Bentivolio as another Bob Barr. Barr was an A-hole who didn’t event remotely have a libertarian voting record, at least Bentivolio does.

    To all you jackwangs who keep attacking Bentivolio, leave him alone. We can finally have a credible ticket, Johnson-Bentivolio 2016. If we want to finally be the big fish in the big pond we candidates with experience and name recognition. Keep nominating people like Petersen and this Cooley guy, we won’t win. DO WE FINALLY WANT A CHANCE TO WIN? Get you’re head out of the sand and finally win an election.

    BTW Mr. Bentivolio, welcome. Don’t let these jerks get you down. Show them why you ARE the best candidate for VEEP.

  44. Andy

    “Libertarian Voter

    May 9, 2016 at 22:20

    I’m excited to see Congressman Bentivolio join the LP. I think the problem we face is we have Libertarians who are more conservative, like Bentivolio, and we have those who are more liberal, like Gary Johnson.”

    Amazing how people keep acting like Gary Johnson is this great liberal when as Governor, he supported the death penalty, and he also signed a bill to ban late term abortions, and he also supports parental notification if a minor wants to get an abortion, and he supports allowing states to come up with their own abortion laws (which means that some states would likely outlaws it).

    There are a lot of people out there who do not have their facts straight.

    “To all you jackwangs who keep attacking Bentivolio, leave him alone. We can finally have a credible ticket, Johnson-Bentivolio 2016.”

    Most people do not care much about a former member of the US House. Bob Barr did not do that great. Neither did Cynthia McKinney. Neither did Virgil Goode.

    The guy just joined the party and the nominating convention is 2 1/2 weeks from now, and I’d wager that most party members do not even know who he is. It is really astounding that there are people who’d just give away a nomination to a high profile office this easily.

  45. Andy

    “would likely outlaws it”

    Should read, “would likely outlaw it…”

  46. Andy

    Question for IPR administrators: Are any of the people above posting using IP anonymizers? If so, I’d suspect that they are trolls, probably some of the same ones who have been trolling here for years.

  47. Andy

    “Kerry Bentivolio

    May 9, 2016 at 20:51

    I voted libertarian in Congress. I am Kerry Bentivolio. Do not compare me to someone else who burned you. You sound like someone in the GOP or an elitist! You are better than that!”

    You may end up being good, but you have to realize that you are just joining the party and announcing that you are running to be our party’s VP nominee 2 1/2 weeks before the national convention, and most of us have never heard of you. If you really wanted to do this, you should have joined the party and announced that you were running months ago. It seems like too much too soon to me.

  48. Kerry Bentivolio

    I never sponsored a bill concerning marriage. It is not a federal issue.
    Howard Phillips? I don’t think so. Please double check. All my speeches are in the Congressional Record.
    Separation of church and state? I don’t think so on that either. Like crony capitalism the federal government should not pick winners and losers. It should protect your religious right as long as it neither harms or disrespects the rights of others.
    If you allow a civil union between members of the same sex don’t tell Rick Santorum and don’t call it a marriage. Marriage is originally designed as one of God’s covenants and if you truly want a separation of church and state then respect the original definition ! By adding a new definition is a con job tactic used by big government. Reread Animal Farm! You will avoid the controversy and not upset folks. Btw, my financial set back is no secret and the info recited is main stream GOP generated spin. And BTW, all a legal right. Perhaps you would prefer debt Prison or indentured service? Wow!
    Life is a risk and FYI I was once a baseball coach and during the entire season we never won a game.
    Most members of Congress leave office richer! I left with my retirement from 27 yrs of service as a part time national guardsman and my VA disability total income for me each month is $2100.00.
    And the GOP crooks said, upon my winning the seat, “we will take back the seat and destroy him personally.”. Paul Welday said that!
    And you ask why I am now a libertarian?
    I’m going back to DC as either a libertarian or an independent. And I will, not try, help the libertarians be a voice to reckon with as the VP candidate. Together we can do this and perhaps in the future when we offer our solutions people will start paying attention and our future candidates have the opportunity not available to us now. We have an opportunity to expose the corruption, enlighten the main stream, generate a larger audience and in future years, Win!

  49. Jill Pyeatt

    KB said: “If you allow a civil union between members of the same sex don’t tell Rick Santorum and don’t call it a marriage. Marriage is originally designed as one of God’s covenants and if you truly want a separation of church and state then respect the original definition ! By adding a new definition is a con job tactic used by big government.”

    You lost me here. I’ll be supporting someone who wants liberty for everyone in this country.

  50. Dave

    I believe Congressman Bentivolio had a subforum on Ron Paul forums along with others such as Amash, Massie, and Rand Paul who the site believed “promoted liberty”. I do recall that the site removed his forum sometime after he was elected, suggesting a break with that movement. My vague recollection is that some of the members thought he was moving to close to then Speaker Boehner.

    Still, always nice to see a high profile “get”, and I wish the Congressman the best in his runs. I do believe he can find a home in the LP.

  51. Kerry Bentivolio

    I was asked to rejoin the libertarian party and run as a VP.
    Also, as the libertarian candidate for the 11th district.
    I am prolife with a conservative record. I don’t believe the government should be our nanny. Never have, never will.
    I served my country in two wars and do not support empire building. Never have, never will.
    I do not support government interference in our personal lives. Never have, never will.
    I support a smaller limited government. Always have, always will.
    I do not take drugs and watched people destroy themselves with legal, illegal drugs and booze. I don’t support it personally I’d rather you not do it because it can take over your life. I smoke, unfortunately, and it too is addictive. I can offer my advice but no law can prevent it so why bother?
    Btw, who won that war on drugs?
    Thank you for allowing me to voice my opinions.

  52. Andy

    “Kerry Bentivolio

    May 9, 2016 at 23:27

    I was asked to rejoin the libertarian party and run as a VP.”

    Maybe I missed this, but if you rejoined the Libertarian Party, it would imply that you had been a Libertarian Party member in this past. If this is correct, when were you a Libertarian Party member?

    Also, who asked you to join the Libertarian Party and run for our VP nomination?

  53. Jeremy Siple

    “You lost me here. I’ll be supporting someone who wants liberty for everyone in this country.”

    Same here.

  54. Kerry Bentivolio

    Thank you. I appreciate the comment. I took a smoking break with the speaker and we suddenly became smoking buddies. I held an ash tray he flicked his cigarette ash into. Amazing how the spin and hype go hyperbole.
    Yes, I got off the liberty forum when I could not get Massie or Amash to cosponsor my Read the Bills Act. Nor did they like my vote on a CR that got me a 3% cut in gov spending and 3 bills passed. They also said they would help in my fund raising. They did not. Perhaps you might ask Rand Paul about his golf game on Mackinaw island with my future opponent, when told by my opponent he raised $500,000 for Romney and would do the same for him if he stayed out of my race. How do I know this? Paul’s political guy here in Michigan was my guy and I hired two staffers of his who informed me of the deal. Principles are bought and sold in DC like stock on the nyse. The higher the office the more the cost. Few are immune. Everyone has their price. Me too? But mine were already paid for by my friends in Vietnam and Iraq. In blood to make the rich richer and building an empire? Under my watch I will not let it continue! Never again.

  55. Kerry Bentivolio

    My wife would kill me if I ran for President! I might get “accidentally ” elected LOL.
    And she hates buying dresses!
    Hey, maybe we could get the dem votes? They think Obama is Santa! Why not a guy they said actually believes he is Santa? Ho, ho, ho.
    Unfortunately, I sold off the reindeer.

  56. Darcy G Richardson

    A guy who coached a winless baseball team and once portrayed Jolly St. Nick while raising reindeer can’t be all bad. He’s actually kind of interesting.

    Then again, with the party’s 2012 presidential nominee and presumed frontrunner again playing the part of Kris Kringle by delivering another bag full of expensive presents to Ron Nielson’s political consulting firm, I don’t think a Johnson-Bentivolio ticket would be a particularly good idea.

    The former Michigan congressman is probably a nice guy — and more than likely a principled one, at that — but one Santa Claus on the ticket is more than enough.

  57. Kerry Bentivolio

    Now you want to abolish Christmas? After all doesn’t the gifts come from the same taxpayers?
    What about the surge in sales for retailers during that season? Do you know how many people are employed because of Christmas?
    Forbid Christmas? The candy makers, the gift wrap, the toy makers, the stock boys and girls get their first job opportunities! The economy would crash and China will go bankrupt! Ho, ho, ho. I am tired, time for bed. To all a good night! Ho, ho, ho.

  58. Kerry Bentivolio

    The suppression of traditions like Santa Claus, reindeer, and the Christian faith for that matter, is in competition with big government. Proponents of big government want people to worship government not a God. Santa is competition and a threat. Santa a threat? That’s crazy!
    When you think about it, almost anything people want to do must first be approved by either the government, or a lawyer.
    It is why Bernie Sanders is popular. Free everything…
    They want people to Worship the golden calf, money, rather than a God. Funny thing is our money is only as good as your FAITH in it. Ho, ho, ho. Wink, wink.

  59. Libertarian Voter

    Folks, the Republican party used to be the big tent party where all was welcomed. That is the Libertarian party now. This party is getting press coverage. Gary Johnson has a shot at making the NATIONAL DEBATES. If we nominate people who do not have credibility, then we loss all the momentum. This is exactly why people in the RLC say ” The LP is content with being a small fish in a small pond.”

    BTW Andy, I’ve been a long time reader and never commented on this site before. The only troll I see if you. Go back and look at Bentivolio’s voting record. He is very different than Barr. Lastly, Virgil Goode, and all those you named were LIFE LONG POLITICIANS. Bentivolio is a war veteran, former school teacher, a small business owner, and a former auto worker. He served one term in Congress and was attacked and primaried because of his voting record.

  60. Kerry Bentivolio

    Thank you for the plug. The two party system is a joke and two wings of the same bird. I was effective and successful working in Congress. Under the dirt they piled on me you will fine a gold nugget. I listened and learned. I was never a career finpol.
    The GOP had a guy who served his country honorably. For the right reasons. The GOP laid claim to telling people if you work hard you will be successful. When you do the elites squash you like a bug. They are hypocritical and dishonest. It is time to fight back and call them out on it.
    We can do this together or I go it alone. I will continue to be marginalized, placed in the back of the shelf, called a has been. No matter, I would rather be a has been than a never been. I will continue to fight. I kept the faith, I did the deed and provided a positive example. The negative hype, spin and other bs is significant telling me I am a threat to the status quo. I am honored they spent $2.4 million to unseat me. Wow.
    It is time to grab them by the nose and kick them in the ass!
    Thanks again for the plug!
    God, family, country. Strive valiantly, dare greatly.

  61. Kimberly McCurry

    Please contact me Mr. Bentivolio at chair@michiganlp.org.

    Michigan has some laws we have to go over about running in multiple races, and/or parties.

    This short segment is to educate those from out of state this aspect and it may change the focus of the race.

    I am aware we had spoken before and at that time you hadn’t considered running yet.

    Looking forward to speaking with you.

  62. Barry Swift

    “Most members of Congress leave office richer! I left with my retirement from 27 yrs of service as a part time national guardsman and my VA disability total income for me each month is $2100.00.”

    Don’t all former members of congress get a congressional pension as well? Also, unless wikipedia also lied about Mr. Bentivolio’s age, he is eligible for social security, although he may have to wait a couple of years to maximize his payout.

  63. Kerry Bentivolio

    Congressional pensions start after serving 5 years based on 1% of pay times years of service. I am not old enough to collect ss. October I will be.

  64. Barry Swift

    Judging on the answers so far, Kerry Bentivolio is not a radical/NAP libertarian but definitely does sound libertarian-leaning. It’s also great that he is actively involved in this conversation.

  65. Andy

    Bentivolio may well be a good fellow, and a fine libertarian. This does not erase the fact that he is brand new to the party, and the convention is in 2 1/2 weeks, and most of the delegates do not know who he is. There needs to be time for a vetting process for candidates, especially if they are running for a high profile office.

    I fail to see how this qualifies as trolling, and it is rather telling that this comment comes from somebody posting under a fake name (I have got to wonder if there is an IP anonymizer as well).

  66. Barry Swift

    One thing I would disagree on however is the notion that Gary Johnson has credibility.

  67. JIm Fulner

    I hope Kerry sticks around this time. Bentivolio was a member of the LPM previously. After he had lost in the primary to Trott 2 years ago (and Coulter had made the infamous quote about threatening to drown anyone who said they will vote for a Libertarian for senate) I met with Bentivolio to ask him to endorse my Libertarian candidacy for US Senate, because I was certainly more in line with his views than Terry Lynn Land , and I was hoping we’d find some way to have standing to get Coulter for threatening the life of a sitting congressman. After a lengthy discussion the answer basically was that he didn’t want to endorse a Libertarian because he thought he would hurt his chance at eventually becoming the Chair of the Michigan GOP. This is after telling me that he was sure that the MI-GOP had bugged his house and was sending black helicopters to harass him and his family. Hopefully he’s got that all straightened out now.

  68. Kerry Bentivolio

    I did not know you nor your stance. Black helicopters? No. My opponent helicopter flew over our farm several times. I, jokingly asked my son what he was growing in the garden? We laughed it off. After the 3 Rd time it gets irretating. When we asked why they did it they said, “opposition research.”. I guess spying on people for political purposes is okay in their eyes. Had he called me I would have gave him a tour. They’d rather intimidate people like school yard bullies. I’m glad I did not endorse you. Your comments are laced with interesting word choices. I voted for a libertarian us senator, a Wayne state university guy. Bowers? I think? And yes, I voted for Terry Land in the last one. I only endorsed one candidate as a member of Congress. Jim Runstead, my state Rep and so far he is doing a great job! Check him out.

  69. natural born American

    Bentivilio’s best qualification for the nomination is that he’s actually won an election. Have any of the other candidates for the VP nomination ever won an election?

  70. Honorable Kerry Bentivolio

    Perhaps they did not see my ‘official’ GOP resignation letter to Speaker Boehner, dated December 4, 2014 and think I am out to hijack the Libertarian Party? I signed a pledge with the Republic Liberty Caucus that I continue to support, that was on the desk of every one of my DC US House staffers, and I continue to support today. It is the best pledge I have read to date. While not perfect in my endeavor to follow it I will strive valiantly and dare greatly to achieve that as my goal as a servant holding a political office. It reads as follows; I pledge to you here today, and to the American people, that I will work to: Restore liberty, not restrict it;
    Shrink government, not expand it;
    Reduce taxes, not raise them; Abolish programs, not create them;
    Promote the freedom and independence of citizens, not the interference of government in their lives;
    and Observe the limited, enumerated powers of our Constitution, not ignore them.
    For following that pledge it cost me a small fortune and my sacred honor.
    I may have been knocked down, but I am getting back up, dusting myself off and getting back in the fight! I’m going to grab the big government hacks by the nose and kick them in the ass every chance I get. I hope you will join the fight! Together we can do this. I fought for my country and I want it back!

  71. Andy

    “natural born American
    May 10, 2016 at 15:13
    Bentivilio’s best qualification for the nomination is that he’s actually won an election. Have any of the other candidates for the VP nomination ever won an election?”

    Bob Barr won elections too, but this did not make him a good candidate for the LP.

    Maybe Bentivilio will be better than that, but I am just making a point here that having been elected to some office in another party does not automatically mean that a person will be a good candidate for the LP.

  72. Greg Jones

    Congressman Bentivolio, did you ask the national website to list you? It may be as simple as asking them, or perhaps not, but it’s unlikely they will list you if you don’t ask them to, or at least that would be my guess. Also, have you corresponded with your state party chairwoman? She requested you do so and gave her contact info in the comments above.

  73. Kerry Bentivolio

    You are correct. It does not mean I am the best candidate. You should check my voting record. Visit my Facebook page. Do not judge a book by the cover! Read the book!
    Also, I noticed not one (L) VP candidate filed with the FEC.
    Why?

  74. Jay Wildwood

    My guess, assuming of course that is correct, is that none of them have raised $5,000 yet so there is no requirement that they do so.

  75. Anarchist Leaving Leaving the LP

    I’m thinking it’s time to find a new political home. I can’t believe what the LP has become.

  76. Greg Jones

    Well maybe if the anarchists and troofers leave it will start to be more welcoming to a much larger number of people.

  77. Honorable Kerry Bentivolio

    Yes, I informed our chairwoman. I first expressed an interest in running as (L) VP. National suggested I also consider running as the (L) for the US House as well. There is reluctance here doing both for fear the State of Michigan won’t allow the L to be on the ballot. My volunteers contacted the State Elections Bur. asking if possible it can happen like Ron Paul, Ryan and Bachman who ran for two federal seats. There is no constitutional provisions for running for two seats at the same time for federal office and denying a name on a ballot simply because they are not either a D or an R as long as the submissions are ON TIME and not late would be cause for a lawsuit. As I officially resigned from the GOP in a letter to Speaker of the House on December 4, 2014 while in office I can not, in all conscience rejoin the GOP unless they changed within the party and supported my belief as stated in another post here, reference the RLC pledge. I also considered running as an Independent here in the congressional district and honestly I am wavering on that too. It is not a question if one doesn’t happen the other will. The question, for me, is how best to expose the corruption, unrestrained wasteful spending, and making the government transparent and accountable as we are to them they should be to us. If the Libertarian party is in agreement and willing to support the pledge (among other issues we can discuss and I, or they come to agreement, Understand, I am not all knowing, thus willing to learn and become better educated on other issues not encompassed within the pledge). This is my main concern. I can not, nor will I support a government that thinks itself superior to the sovereign citizen, the taxpayer, my average hard working constituent who, yes, using sound bytes and limited information must decide who to vote. I love my constituents, even the ones who think differently than I. I, in my heart of hearts believe justice wins if we can push aside our emotional baggage and deal with reality objectively and our nations founding principles. We, nay, I, must stand for truth before all else, and should it mean I stand alone, then so be it. In a Biblical context, I must have the courage of David and wisdom of Solomon. The political party that best supports my goals is important but not all encompassing. I will remain loyal to the RLC pledge as best I can and that pledge will be one of my primary goals. The other, is to protect our future generations, to offer them a guarantee of Liberty when their life begins or began. This I give my life, my fortune and my sacred honor as our Declaration so aptly frames it in its final words. (BTW, as an English and history teacher I taught the radical writers of the 18th century, people like; Payne, Jefferson, Franklin, Henry along with Animal Farm, F 451, etc. and my trouble as a teacher started when I started teaching Rand. Go figure, in today’s day and age! LOL) I hope you will read the book “Honorable Kerry Bentivolio” and not judge it by its cover and listen to the ignorant politically motivated self-serving critics who seen only snipets of it. And I hope you will join me in the writing of the final chapters…

  78. Greg Jones

    People are living longer these days, you may very well have decades of productive life ahead of you (even if the doctors told you otherwise). So there’s no need to assume we are in the “final chapters” yet.

  79. Andy

    Greg Jones, yet another IPR newbie, or is it another one of the same people posting under another fake name? Stay tuned.

  80. Greg Jones

    There’s nothing to stay tuned to. If you have an argument or counter argument make it. I don’t care who you are and it’s none of your business who I am. I said the anarchists and troofers need to go. Lots of other people have said the same exact thing. If you have no counter-argument, just admit it and move on.

  81. steve m

    Greg Jones “Well maybe if the anarchists and troofers leave it will start to be more welcoming to a much larger number of people.”

    How is your trying to push people out going to make it more welcoming. If you have logic in there… it is counter intuitive.

  82. Kerry Bentivolio

    There is a little bit of anachist in all of us. Especially when we stand in long government lines waiting for a government clerk to approve a license, permit or pay a fee. Not to worry…
    Anachist unite!
    Hummm, now there is another rub? Anachists United?

  83. Jill Pyeatt

    Kerry, I’ve noticed that people new to the party don’t know that a good amount of us, including some of the most active Libertarians, self-identify as anarchists.

    FYI.

  84. Honorable Kerry Bentivolio

    So? What is the point? There is nothing wrong with wanting no (or less) government in our lives.

  85. Jill Pyeatt

    So? What is the point? There is nothing wrong with wanting no (or less) government in our lives.

    Good answer! Maybe you’re one of us after all!

  86. Jeremy Siple

    Hopefully I get to speak with Congressman Bentivolio at the convention. I have some concerns about him that I suspect could be better answered in person than over the internet. I will say I’m more comfortable with him as our VP nominee than Jim Gray again.

  87. Kerry bentivolio

    I may not be attending the convention. I think the presidential candidates made a selection already. No worries…

  88. Stewart Flood

    Some candidates have announced their preferred choice, but they do not have the authority to do more than recommend their choice to the convention. They do not always get their choice, and sometimes they make deals with other candidates at the last minute to try to get the nomination.

    Think of it as sort of a combination of go fish and twister.

  89. Kerry bentivolio

    After attending my state convention I found the platform impressive and worth pursuing. Unfortunately, like the GOP, many folks, arrogant and self serving. Our county chair Jim, intelligent and helpful much the opposite. I left early for a meeting and grad ceremony in Hillsdale. During the hour plus drive i found myself wishing I knew him sooner and better. I sat with Johnson for an hour. I found him thoughtful and knowledgeable, upbeat and optimistic . we did not talk on every issue and I am sure we might find disagreements, but I saw a sensitive concerned man I could trust to make the tough decisions I can not find in the candidates found in D or R parties. He earned my vote.

  90. Stewart Flood

    The problem with the LP — and in fact any party — is that people who are active in the party infrastructure tend to become more rigid about the standards. “He or she isn’t enough of a [fill in the blank] and doesn’t belong in our party!” I remember hearing that years ago, when I was in the GOP. Fortunately, he was right and I really didn’t belong there. I’ve been “clean” and haven’t even thought about backing a republican for over a decade now. 🙂

    I’d recommend coming to Orlando to see how the really crazy people act. It is actually a blast for the most part. This will be my sixth national convention. If you decide to go, make sure you drop by the South Carolina delegation. We won’t be wearing funny hats, but we will be having fun!

  91. Greg Jones

    “How is your trying to push people out going to make it more welcoming. If you have logic in there… it is counter intuitive.”

    Well, I’m not trying to push people out. I’m saying that most people will not come in to a party which lays out a welcome mat for certain other kinds of people, for example NAMBLA, nazis, KKK, anarchists, troofers, and others of that sort, in other words they turn away a lot more people than they bring in. But if those are the elements you want to appeal to by all means. I would not be joining you nor asking anyone else to do so.

  92. steve m

    Greg Jones,

    so anarchists to you are the same as the KKK? NAMBLA? and Nazis?

    that is a pretty ridiculously uniformed and dirty paint brush you are using. Smear tactics. Mud throwing.

    And yes it sounds like you are trying to purge people you disagree with from the Libertarian Party.

  93. steve m

    Greg Jones,

    If you are going to bring your intolerant dictatorial attitude with you when you leave the Republican party and try to screw up the Libertarian party just as you screwed up the Republican party. Yea get the hell out of the class room and go stand in the hallway until you can put a coherent tolerant statement together about how you want to work for more individual liberty and respect.

    You will not be welcome until you are more respectful and tolerant of those that have been working to build this party for the last few decades.

    Rather then working for evil… as you have been doing.

  94. Greg Jones

    “so anarchists to you are the same as the KKK? NAMBLA? and Nazis?”

    Absolutely. And I think if you did a poll of the general public you would find that the overwhelming majority by far agree with me.

    “And yes it sounds like you are trying to purge people you disagree with from the Libertarian Party.”

    Not at all. The Libertarian Party has to decide which it values more, the presence of such disreputable fringe elements or the much larger numbers of people like me who are open to moderate libertarian views or even share them but would never share a venue with the extreme crazies. I can’t purge people from an organization I don’t belong to; I can only decide to what degree if any I will associate with them. If the Libertarians prefer to continue to be on the fringes and exclude normal, sane people that don’t want to be associated with fanatics and lunatics, that’s your business, not mine. All I am saying is that if you do decide to cut your ties with the bestiality, anarchy, chemtrails and goat torture-sacrifice crowds and others of that sort, you have a much larger number of people like me who may consider voting, donating or joining you. But it’s your choice to make, not mine.

  95. Greg Jones

    “If you are going to bring your intolerant dictatorial attitude with you…”

    Intolerant? Dictatorial? How? I am not saying *you* can’t choose to live in an insane asylum, I am just saying that *I* choose not to. How is it intolerant or dictatorial to point out that if you do choose to live in an insane asylum, your choice of roommates becomes a lot more limited than if you don’t?

    “screw up the Libertarian party just as you screwed up the Republican party.”

    I don’t run the Republican Party. There are a lot of things I never liked about their coalition. I put up with it for a long time as I thought the only practical alternative was even worse. I’ve come to a point where I no longer think that is the case.

    “Yea get the hell out of the class room and go stand in the hallway”

    Given that your party has very little money, membership, votes, elected officials at any level, or influence over public policy at this time, who is it again who is in the hallway?

    “how you want to work for more individual liberty”

    By broadening the base of people who agree that government should be smaller and less powerful at home and abroad, in economic as well as social/cultural spheres, and cutting ties with extremist fringe elements who scare and drive away far more people than they bring in. Notice that the above says nothing about parties; which side of that divide you end up on is up to you.

  96. steve m

    Greg,

    It was you and your Republican friends that cost those of here hundreds of thousands of dollars in legal fees and petitioning fees to get our candidates on the ballot. Without the anarchists that you equate with the KKK and Nazis and NAMBA, the Libertarian Party would not exist.

    It was you and your buddies, who tossed our candidates of the ballot in Ohio and Pennsylvania and yet you think you waltz on in here and say we are taking over and we want those people out.

    If the choice is growing the party by bringing in intolerant back stabbers like you or fucking over old hard working and contributing friends.

    I will support the latter.

  97. steve m

    I am on the side that doesn’t try to steal the hard work of others.
    I am on the side that doesn’t toss the people who did the hard work under the wheels of a bus.
    I am on the side that has a history of promoting ballot access and voter participation.

    I contend that your party that you have supported in the past is on the other side. If you wish to cross over to this side and support candidates that are for smaller government and not just claim to be. Then you need to take your hat off and apologize for your and the party you supported past transgressions.

    Not come in as a political refugee with the intent of corrupting and stealing the hard work of others.

  98. Caryn Ann Harlos

    Steve, don’t let people like that get to you. It was for such a time as this that the Statement of Principles was written. He, and people like him, can’t do a thing about that. Relax. Anarchists helped found the party. The SoP allows for anarchy, and it is functionally unchangeable. Nothing to see here. He is just yanking your chain, don’t worry about. A troll blog commenter isn’t worth it. Added to the ignore list. Those who are coming or thinking of coming that wish to change the unique Libertarian identity think they are an unstoppable force. They are about to meet the immovable object.

  99. Greg Jones

    Goodness. How is it possible to willfully misinterpret so much? I’ll give up after this time as it is not possible to explain to people who are unwilling to listen. I am not in your party, I haven’t decided to join your party, and I am not trying to change your party. Repeat that as many times as it takes to sink in.

    I said that if (once again…if) there was a libertarian-leaning moderate party without lunatics, fanatics and extremists I and many others could support such a party, and that the number of people gained would most likely be a lot more than those lost. But I never suggested that you have to welcome me in. For the time being I will be an independent, voting for the better candidate with a real chance to win regardless of party, and casting a protest vote or leaving a race blank if all the plausible choices seem equally bad. If you don’t understand after this that I am not interested in starting or taking over any parties – you won’t understand it no matter what I say.

  100. Greg Jones

    “It was you and your Republican friends that cost those of here hundreds of thousands of dollars in legal fees and petitioning fees to get our candidates on the ballot. ”

    Well, I know for certain that I did no such thing, nor any friend of mine that I know of. I’ll take your word for it that Republican Party leaders have done such things. I expect Democrats have done similar things as well, even if it wasn’t to you. But the fact alone that up until now I thought Republicans were generally the lesser evil doesn’t mean that I or any friend of mine did anything like that.

    “Without the anarchists that you equate with the KKK and Nazis and NAMBA, the Libertarian Party would not exist.”

    If that’s true, it goes a long way towards explaining why you are a fraction of 1% after 40 plus years.

    “It was you and your buddies, who tossed our candidates of the ballot in Ohio and Pennsylvania”

    Somehow I never noticed doing anything like that. Seems far fetched.

    ” and yet you think you waltz on in here and say we are taking over and we want those people out.”

    And yet I explicitly told you more than once that I haven’t waltzed anywhere, and given what I am seeing from you and your fellow party members, I expect I’ll probably steer a wide berth. I don’t know how you expect to win anything politically if that’s the reaction you elicit from someone like me who would like policy to move incrementally in your direction pretty much on any issue I can think of, but then again perhaps my mistake is in thinking that your purpose in engaging in politics is to actually change some aspect of public policy, as opposed to, for example, throwing a tantrum and stomping your feet.

    “intolerant back stabbers like you”

    You lost me completely there. Intolerant? Backstabbers? LIke me? You seem to be tilting at strawmen.

  101. steve m

    Thank you, because I would rather not associate people who ignorantly believe and spread lies….

    “so anarchists to you are the same as the KKK? NAMBLA? and Nazis?”

    Greg Jones >> Absolutely. And I think if you did a poll of the general public you would find that the overwhelming majority by far agree with me.

  102. Greg Jones

    “He is just yanking your chain, don’t worry about. A troll blog commenter isn’t worth it. Added to the ignore list.”

    Yes, please do ignore those who are sincerely considering you for the first time. Let the moment pass. Make sure they don’t consider you ever again while you’re at it. That way you can be absolutely assured that you remain at the top of your anthill.

    “hose who are coming or thinking of coming that wish to change the unique Libertarian identity think they are an unstoppable force. ”

    Why exactly do several of you insist that I want to come in and change something when I keep telling you I don’t want to do either of those things? Imagine if you were a vendor at a marketplace… how irrational would you seem if anytime someone approached your table to talk to you, you’d yell at them that it’s your table and they can’t have it? Well, that’s exactly how you seem right now, if anyone not in your political cult reads this conversation.

  103. Greg Jones

    Steve M: “Thank you, because I would rather not associate people who ignorantly believe and spread lies….”

    “so anarchists to you are the same as the KKK? NAMBLA? and Nazis?”

    Greg Jones >> Absolutely. And I think if you did a poll of the general public you would find that the overwhelming majority by far agree with me.

    Greg Jones Again: No lie, try a random poll of the general population yourself if you disbelieve me.

  104. langa

    I wonder if it ever occurred to Greg Jones that, as horrified as he is by the idea of being associated with anarchists, we anarchists are just as horrified by the idea of being associated with closed-minded dimwits.

  105. robert capozzi

    gj: Why exactly do several of you insist that I want to come in and change something when I keep telling you I don’t want to do either of those things?

    me: The Randian/Rothbardian psyche contains large elements of victimology. They love, love, love to play the victim, so much so that they will invent victimizers and instances of victimization.

  106. steve m

    “so anarchists to you are the same as the KKK? NAMBLA? and Nazis?”

    Greg Jones >> Absolutely.

    And if you are absolutely wrong as an individual on this concept why would I trust you opinions on any other subject?

    And even more funny Republican House Majority Leader Dennis Hastert, was convicted of making payments to cover up his molestation of young boys. So you associate with NAMBA practitioners far more then any anarchist that I know of does.

  107. steve m

    Greg Jones,

    To completely put your lying rear on the spot….

    Which “try a random poll of the general population” do you suggest we look at or are you just “poll”ing this out of a hole that your friend Denis would be interested in?

  108. robert capozzi

    sm: And even more funny Republican House Majority Leader Dennis Hastert, was convicted of making payments to cover up his molestation of young boys.

    me: You misunderstand GJ’s point. “Anarchist” is a label for a political extremist, like Nazi, KKK, and NAMBLA. That a former R MC was a molester does not mean that to be R is to be an advocate for NAMBLA or its extreme agenda.

    L candidates are also not widely associated with NAMBLA, although there have been Ls who’ve advocated for NAMBLA’s positions.

    Most L candidates don’t run advocating anarchy, either, including anarchist Ls. They have sense enough to know that anarchism is widely perceived as an extremist philosophy.

  109. Greg Jones

    What is so complicated?

    “Well maybe if the anarchists and troofers leave it will start to be more welcoming to a much larger number of people.” Isn’t the same thing as “I want to come in and take over.” Suppose I said “well if garbage was taken out, your house wouldn’t smell so terribly, and a lot more people would come over” (maybe even me). That doesn’t mean I am threatening to move in and clean out your house myself. It doesn’t mean I am holding a gun to your head and insisting you clean it, either. If you want to have a filthy house that few people want to go anywhere near, that’s your business, not mine. Maybe you like having a place that as few people as possible visit; again, that’s your business entirely. So it is with your party.

    “They love, love, love to play the victim, so much so that they will invent victimizers and instances of victimization.”

    That seems like a plausible explanation, thanks.

  110. Greg Jones

    Steve M: “so anarchists to you are the same as the KKK? NAMBLA? and Nazis?”

    Greg Jones >> Absolutely.

    Steve M: And if you are absolutely wrong as an individual on this concept why would I trust you opinions on any other subject?

    Greg Jones: Well, if I was wrong on that subject, I could still be correct on other subjects. But since I’m right on that subject, there’s no need for such hypotheticals.

  111. Greg Jones

    “And even more funny Republican House Majority Leader Dennis Hastert, was convicted of making payments to cover up his molestation of young boys.”

    Certainly, there are reprehensible people in every party, and in the leadership of every large organization. That’s not at all the same thing as advocating making horrible crimes legal. There are likewise law breakers and people secretly holding racist and paranoid/conspiratorial views in positions of power, but that again isn’t the same thing as openly advocating doing away with all law and order, walking around with a swastika or burning cross and yelling slurs, or proudly displaying your tinfoil hat for all to see.

    “So you associate with NAMBA practitioners far more then any anarchist that I know of does.”

    I’ve never met or talked to Hastert, and he never advocated making his crimes legal, as far as I know. Some Catholic priests have molested children, so does that make all Catholics pro-molester? If Jared Fogle molested children, does that make everyone who ever ate or worked at Subway his friend and a defender of legalizing child molestation? I’m sure you probably know how absurd your arguments are; if not, that’s very sad.

    As for libertarian child molesters, 15 seconds of searching online has brought up the cases of Center for a Stateless Society’s Brad Spangler, who admitted to molesting his own daughter, and San Bernardino County Libertarian Party (former?) treasurer Matthew Barnes, a convicted child molester. Thus, in addition to anarchists being no better than legal child molestation advocates in the eyes of the general public, you don’t get to claim the moral high ground on having individual child molesters being involved with your political cult, either, although that was not the original question.

    “Which “try a random poll of the general population” do you suggest we look at ”

    If literacy isn’t your strong point, I suggested that if you think I am lying or in error about how the general voting public views anarchists or the idea of an anarchist political party or one where anarchists play a prominent role that you should do your own random poll of the general voting public. I’m confident enough that I am correct that I will just stand by what I said and leave it at that.

  112. Greg Jones

    Robert Capozzi at 04:10: Thank you! At least someone around here has a lick of sense.

  113. Greg Jones

    Perhaps an analogy would help.

    Suppose I have been married for 40 years to Rebecca. It’s been a rocky marriage, and we have argued a lot, but I never cheated on her. I always suspected her of cheating on me but never caught her doing it. For a long time, I have had a crush on Linda down the street. She always flirted with me and strongly hinted we could get together if I was ever available. Maybe even told me as much a time or several.

    Now, I’ve finally caught Rebecca openly cheating with a rich asshole from the other side of town; let’s call him Donald. Donald is the kind of guy who will instruct his limo driver to splash you with mud if he sees you walking by the side of the road, just for the laughs. He’s been widely known as a jerk for many years. He’s been married four times, cheated on all of them, screwed over his business partners, customers, shareholders and employees more times than anyone can count, etc. So, now I’ve moved out to a hotel, and Donald is moving in with Rebecca. I hope the two of them get everything they deserve and then some.

    So now I tell Linda: look, maybe one day I’d go out and maybe some day move in with you, but not while you have your nephew Adam who has been in and out of jails, mental hospitals and homeless shelters most of his life sleeping on your couch. The guy is bad news; he masturbates and defecates in the front yard and throws rocks at cars, and follows you around when you go out on dates. If you keep having that guy around, not only am I not moving in but I can’t have you come over or take you out on the town. No one else I know could either, for that matter. Linda then freaks out and starts screaming gibberish about how I am trying to steal her house, kill her nephew and bury him in the yard. Also, about how her nephew is a great guy and how a lot of people just love him.

    Conclusion: no wonder Linda has been single and dateless all these years. I wonder why she bothers flirting with men, placing dating ads in the town paper, or putting up a dating profile online? Maybe it’s time for her to take all that down, get a bunch of cats and no trespassing signs, and enjoy living the rest of her life alone with Adam and the cats.

  114. steve m

    Greg,

    Please show me the poll that supports your claim.

    and Denis wasn’t just associated with your party he was elected by the elected officials of your party.

    Explain why its ok for your party to make child molesters its highest elected officials and yet its anarchists that you accuse of being associated with NAMBA. And you claim to have polls that demonstrate that your beliefs are common. Where are these polls?

  115. Jay Wildwood

    Steve M,

    If you are unable to read or comprehend English, I doubt that Greg repeating himself will help. If you are going to argue with strawmen of your own creation, perhaps you should do it somewhere that other people aren’t misled into thinking that you are talking to anyone other than yourself; and if you must insist on creating strawmen please don’t confuse the readers by assigning the positions you are inventing to someone who not only does not hold them but has disavowed them explicitly and repeatedly. Otherwise please re-read the thread to see why your last comment makes no sense at all.

  116. Kerry bentivolio

    Thank you. The politically arena is filled with misinformation, lies, half truth and similar distortions. Gary Johnson said something to me very profound I wish more candidates understood. He said something like this, ” it is easier to forgive a lie than hypocrisy.”. I agree with that statement. For myself I am quoted as saying, “the hardest thing to find in politics is truth.”
    Reading the posts above could be construed by the readers as if I was engaged in it. I was not. I never use a false name for the social media. As a soldier I used a call sign. It is SOP.
    Thanks for clearing the above up Jay. FYI. Anyone one who claims I wrote any posts above should be considered suspect and integrity questioned. Again, thanks Jay.

  117. steve m

    Jay,

    Greg makes a claim. Says that polls back up his claims and then fails to show the claim. Where is my strawman? Where is his supporting data?

  118. sparkey

    Congressman Bentivolio, are you still planning on going to the national convention and running for VP? Your earlier comment, “I think the presidential candidates made a selection already,” was concerning. Did you get the impression that Gov. Johnson has picked a different VP, and you don’t want to run against them? I know that McAfee has picked Weiss and Perry has picked Coley, but I didn’t think that either Johnson or Petersen had picked anybody.

  119. steve m

    Greg,

    Fact: The Republican Party has had in recent times a serial child molester as its highest elected official.

    accusation: Greg claims it is the Libertarian Party that associates with Child Molesters

    Claim: Greg wont associate with Libertarians because of the association with Child Molesters.

    Question: If Greg was so anti child molesters why has he remained in a party that elects them to the highest offices?

  120. Kerry bentivolio

    Yes. That is my belief and that being the case and money tight I may decide not to attend. I will support Gary in his decision.

  121. steve m

    Lets talk about the KKK and Nazis and their association with the Republican Party.

    David Duke for starters is not a Libertarian He is a Republican.

    “A Klu Klux Klan (KKK) leader in Virginia is one of the latest to endorse Donald Trump for president.

    “I think Donald Trump would be best for the job. The reason a lot of Klan members like Donald Trump is because a lot of what he believes in, we believe in,” said The KKK Imperial Wizard of the Rebel Brigade Knights during an interview with NBC12 in Richmond.”

    “One of the United States’ most prominent white nationalists, William Daniel Johnson, was selected by the Donald Trump campaign to be one of its delegates to the Republican National Convention on Monday—before being unceremoniously dumped by a day later.”

    It isn’t the Libertarian Party that associates with Nazis. It would be the Republican Party.

  122. Kerry bentivolio

    Also, on another subject China is buying up gold and silver with a long term goal to corner the market. They now control most silver and gold mines thru various stock and subsideraries. They recently purchased a major vault in London. Other evidence suggests they are moving forward with similar moves. Should they do this and us dollars backed by faith alone, then shattering that faith in the US dollar, and other currencies, means they win without ever firing a shot in violence.
    The future President will need to deal with the collaspe as the number one priority. The other issues will fall from view and fade from collective memory. Our survival will be paramount. Thus is the ramifications of a dollar or any currency backed by nothing. It will be interesting to watch in the coming months the Chinese long term plan for our demise come to fruition. I pray I am totally and completely wrong.

  123. Andy

    Kerry, you live in Georgia, right? Assuming I am correct, that is not far from Orlando, Florida. If you are serious about the Libertarian Party, this would be a good opportunity for you to get to meet lots of Libertarian Party members from all over the country.

  124. Jay Wildwood

    Steve M,

    “Greg makes a claim. Says that polls back up his claims”

    Greg made no such claim, then explained again that he made no such claim. Try reading again, if you know how.

    “Claim: Greg wont associate with Libertarians because of the association with Child Molesters.”

    Nope. Trying reading again. If you don’t or can’t, please stop misrepresenting what other people say.

  125. Kareem Caliente

    Andy. He’s from Michigan. Do some more research before spouting ignorant drivel.

  126. Andy

    That is why I phrased the above statement in the form of a question.

    Regardless of where he is from, if he is serious about getting involved in the LP, the national convention would be an excellent place for him to get to meet a bunch of party members.

  127. Jay Wildwood

    “David Duke for starters is not a Libertarian He is a Republican.”

    He’s an opportunist and has run with every party he thinks may be advantageous to him including Democrats, Republicans and Reform Party. Much like his current pick, Donald Trump, who has been a registered Democrat, Republican, Independent, and prospective Reform Party candidate. Incidentally, Duke has at times described himself as libertarian as well, so you aren’t off the hook either.

    “It isn’t the Libertarian Party that associates with Nazis. It would be the Republican Party.”

    Nazis associate with any and all political parties that they think will give them some advantage. For example, Augustus Invictus calls himself a Libertarian, and there have been others that have as well. Furthermore, the claim above was not necessarily that nazis associate with the Libertarian Party. Nazis were mentioned, much like child molestation advocates, as examples of people that turn off a lot more people than they bring in, much like anarchists.

  128. Andy

    That is why I phrased the above statement in the form of a question.

    Regardless of where he is from, if he is really serious about getting involved with the Libertarian Party, the LP National Convention in Orlando would be a great place for him to meet a lot of party members.

  129. Jay Wildwood

    “I will support Gary in his decision.”

    Gary Johnson is not the nominee yet, and may or may not become the nominee, and either way whether to accept William Weld as the VP candidate (assuming that story is correct) will be up to the delegates. At least that is my understanding.

  130. robert capozzi

    what GJones actually said was: ” And I think if you did a poll of the general public you would find that the overwhelming majority by far agree with me.”

    I’ve not seen him claiming that there HAS BEEN polls about the population’s feelings about anarchists and anarchism. It’s his sense, and mine, that anarchists are broadly perceived as extremists. This seems non-controversial to me.

    I have not seen any evidence that large numbers of Americans either want anarchy or have warm feelings about anarchism.

    And I say this as a theoretic asymptotic anarchist!

  131. Jay Wildwood

    “Question: If Greg was so anti child molesters why has he remained in a party that elects them to the highest offices?”

    Question: if Steve M was so anti wife beating why does he keep beating his wife, and when is he going to stop?

  132. Jay Wildwood

    “accusation: Greg claims it is the Libertarian Party that associates with Child Molesters”

    When and where did he claim this? Please do learn to read.

  133. Jill Pyeatt

    I received this response from Mr. Bentivolio this morning, in response to the interview questions I sent out yesterday:

    “Thank you for the opportunity to submit my answers to the questions.
    I have decided to suspend from the race.

    Again, thank you. “

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