Independent Libertarian’s Campaign for Congress Gaining Attention and Momentum in Pennsylvania

Jake Towne’s independent libertarian campaign for congress in Pennsylvania’s 15th congressional district first caught my attention last August, when he unveiled his concept of the “open office“. Since then, Towne has maintained a fairly aggressive campaign and has begun to break through the mainstream media’s duopolist filter. The Morning Call, a local paper, profiles Towne’s campaign and candidacy ahead of his petitioning push. Some excerpts:

Towne has held ”Towne hall” meet and greets and began circulating nominating petitions last week in a series of public appearances at local pizza and sandwich shops, hoping to gather the 3,629 signatures a third-party or independent candidate needs to place his name on the ballot in the race for Lehigh Valley’s 15th Congressional District.

”I’m out-gunned and everything, but a lot of times, people like an underdog,” Towne said. If he succeeds, he’ll face Democratic Bethlehem Mayor John Callahan and three-term Republican Congressman Charlie Dent, or his primary challenger Mat Benol, a tea party activist from Palmer Township, in the general election. . . .

Towne’s down-to-earth approach and fiscally conservative politics have made a fan of 43-year-old Center Valley real estate broker Bob Dandi, a conservative who backed Mike Huckabee in the last Republican presidential primary but has grown disillusioned with the party as a whole. ”At this point in time, I can’t see voting for any candidate of any political party that has been in power for the last 17 years because they are the ones who got us into this mess,” Dandy said . . .

While voters seem hungry for an alternative to the status quo, third-party candidates face serious obstacles obtaining funding and convincing voters they’re contenders, said Muhlenberg College political scientist Chris Borick. ‘It’s pretty clear there’s interest in candidates who represent something fresh,” Borick said. ”What remains to be seen is if that translates into support for candidates outside the normal party structures.”

Cross-posted from Poli-Tea.

9 thoughts on “Independent Libertarian’s Campaign for Congress Gaining Attention and Momentum in Pennsylvania

  1. Robert Milnes

    Oh, brother! Here we go again. A libertarian Independent. A Joe Kennedy do-over without the name thing & the Libertarian Professor sponsor. We all know-or should-what is probably going to happen. HE’S GOING TO LOSE. He’s not going to try PLAS/FET/FDS. He’ll get the usual low single digits. SPARE ME! OMG!

  2. Chuck Moulton

    Jake is a great guy.

    He’s unlikely to win though. It’s a shame he isn’t helping the libertarian brand more by running as a big-L Libertarian.

  3. NewFederalist

    I hope he wins the GOP nomination. I voted for him as the LP nominee for Congress a few years ago. That was the same year he ran for both Congress and the General Assembly on the LP line.

  4. Imperial

    This is great news! I have until now only been following Towne’s campaign haphazardly. However, the polling seems to indicate it is worth following.

  5. Adrian

    @4: Sorry, Chuck, but I disagree. A tailor-made independent brand is much more useful than any fringe third party would be this election cycle, even in as hostile an anti-incumbent environment as this.

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