IPR was on the scene at this past Tuesday’s Rally for the Republic, keeping tabs on third party activity as Libertarians, Constitutionalists and Ron Paul Republicans collided just 10 miles from the scene of a more subdued major party political gathering. The following photos survived stadium mood-lighting and a camera that was not as good as advertised to give you a feel for the eclecticism of the Campaign for Liberty‘s official kickoff celebration:
Libertarian Presidential Nominee Bob Barr arrived early to muster up support among the throngs of ticket holders lined up to enter the Target Center before the start of the program. Here Barr pauses for an impromptu media interview with local sign-waving Libertarians in tow.
Here Barr keeps his cool when confronted by a mustache that rivals his own.
The Libertarian Party’s display booth had a prime location right across from the official T-Shirt vendors and two high-traffic entrances to the Target Center. Free drawstring backpacks bearing the national party’s logo were popular among attendees eager to keep their hands free as they moved from one vendor the next.
Chuck Baldwin and the Constitution Party also maintained a strong presence. While the official display booth worked hard to keep up with its enthusiastic prospects, independent supporters throughout the stadium and vendor areas distributed bumper stickers and pamphlets to anyone who would take them. A projection screen in the booth highlighted Baldwin’s YouTube presence.
Once-rumored LP Presidential contender MC Tucker Carlson talked about his own experience growing up around libertarianism. With a clear foresight that the upcoming speakers were quite the mixed group, Carlson asked the crowd to maintain its respectfulness and hear out all the points of view they were about to imbibe. Video of his introduction here.
Speaking as Chairman of the Conservative Caucus, Constitution Party (then US Taxpayers Party) founder Howard Phillips lauded Ron Paul’s congressional record and denounced international government, relating opposition to the trans-Texas corridor and North American Union to the long chain of events that shaped the European Union.
Well-known libertarian Lew Rockwell took the stage to a chant of “Lew! Lew! Lew!” before calling on the assembled attendees to cast off the self-appellation “Conservative.” Here are parts 1 and 2 of his remarks.
Former Minnesota Governor Jesse Ventura rocked the house with his calls for defense of free speech and the second amendment, as well as his discussion of the Justice Department’s reaction to 9/11 and intimation of a 2012 run. Full IPR article here, video here.
The present writer was shocked to discover that the former Governor was not universally beloved in his home state. When one passer-by remarked that “Everyone’s entitled to their opinion, I guess” another replied “Yeah, and it’s right where it belongs too.”
Here Minnesota Independence Party Senate hopeful Dean Barkley meets with a local supporter fresh on the heels of an on-stage endorsement from Governor Ventura, who deferred running this year in favor Barkley.
If it hasn’t been made clear yet, the main attraction of the evening was 1988 Libertarian Presidential nominee, former Republican Presidential candidate and sitting Congressman, Ron Paul. While cheered on as he reiterated the same policy themes expounded throughout his campaign, the Doctor was also showered with applause when calling for his Revolution to extend beyond the Republican Party to all parties and independents, and his point that the present political situation calls for serious urgency and maybe, in the near future, civil disobedience. A full video presentation of his remarks can be found here.