RJ Harris: May Seek LP Presidential Nod

From an article on Libertarian Strategy Monthly:

RJ Harris has joined a growing list of potential candidates who have declared an interest in running for the Libertarian Party 2012 Presidential nomination.  While avoiding announcing at this time, RJ told Libertarian Strategy Monthly that he plans on running.

Photo of RJ Harris

RJ Harris

Read the original article here.

Harris joins a list of people who have announced their interest in the LP nomination:

  • Jim Burns
  • Jim Duensing
  • Joy Waymire
  • Lee Wrights
  • Roger Gary

Harris ran for congress in Oklahoma in 2010.  Some of the issues he championed on his website were the abolition of drug prohibition; abolishing the federal income tax; relaxing immigration while eliminating the perverse incentives in current immigration policy; and introducing a Constitutional Amendment making it a high crime (felony) for a Congressperson to vote affirmatively for a bill or for the President to sign into law the same that they have not personally read in its entirety.

Harris received the endorsement of the Republican Liberty Caucus.

48 thoughts on “RJ Harris: May Seek LP Presidential Nod

  1. Richard Winger

    Richard J. Harris is a registered Republican and ran for US House last year in the Republican primary. Apparently he is on military duty in Afghanistan right now, and it may not be easy for him to change his registration, but I hope he will. Oklahoma won’t let him register “Libertarian” but he could at least become a registered Independent.

  2. Thomas L. Knapp

    Milnes @2,

    “Endorsed by RLC=Dondero approved.”

    Actually, no. Dondero is no longer in the national leadership of the RLC, and they generally follow a different line than he does.

  3. JT

    Have all of those people announced their interest in the nomination or announced they’re actually running for the nomination? Personally, I don’t care if someone merely says he or she is interested. Enter the race or don’t. And yes, aspiring candidates will set up “exploratory committees,” but that means they’re running.

  4. Thomas L. Knapp

    Richard @ 11,

    According to his web site bio, he’s a National Guard member. The picture shows him in camouflage utilities and carrying an M16 at a Forward Operating Base in Afghanistan.

    That’s a “soldier,” even if his MOS is Air Traffic Controller, which it probably isn’t (why would they need an Air Traffic Controller at a FOB?).

    Maybe you’re thinking of Forward Air Controller, which is a different thing entirely (that’s the guy who calls in airstrikes).

  5. George Phillies

    Readers may want to look at his stands and his (lack of) past record of running as a Libertarian, namely his last run for office was as a Republican.

  6. Jose C

    Readers may want to look at his stands and his (lack of) past record of running as a Libertarian, namely his last run for office was as a Republican.

    Would that also apply to Ron Paul? His last run for office was as a Republican. And he only ran as a Libertarian once out of many, many times that he ran as a Republican.

  7. Richard Winger

    But at least Ron Paul was a life member of the Libertarian Party. Also Ron Paul was not a registered Republican. Voters in Texas aren’t registered in any party.

  8. JT

    Jose: “Would that also apply to Ron Paul? His last run for office was as a Republican. And he only ran as a Libertarian once out of many, many times that he ran as a Republican.”

    I’m sure it would for Phillies. He dislikes Ron Paul (and anyone else with a couple of Ron’s positions on social issues).

    Personally, I couldn’t care less if someone ran as a Republican or a Democrat before as long as he or she wants a major reduction in federal government intervention economically, socially, and militarily.

  9. David Colborne

    What JT said. We have to remember here that the LP currently only represents about 1-3% of the electorate, if most elections are any indication. Consequently, the only way we’re going to win an election and make our platform happen is if we pick up several truckloads of converts on the way.

  10. Jose C

    But at least Ron Paul was a life member of the Libertarian Party.

    That is fine. RJ Harris become a life member of the Libertarian Party and all is forgiven (and move to Texas).

  11. Jonathan M Henthorn

    In response to those questioning RJ’s commitment to the Libertarian Party because of his previous Oklahoma congressional run as a Republican, you should know that it is impossible to register or file as a Libertarian Party candidate in OK, And it will remain impossible until a Gubernatorial or a presidential candidate collects 80,000 signatures to get on the ballet as a Libertarian Party candidate. More over if that candidate does not get 10% of the general vote in November then again there will be no way to register or file as a Libertarian for another 4 years.

    As a native son of Oklahoma, it’s possible that RJ could be the candidate that either wins the state for Libertarian or at least gets the 10% to insure that voters and candidates can register and file as Libertarians for the next 4 years.

    Angelia O’ Del, The former Oklahoma Libertarian Party Chair, can personally vouch for that fact the RJ told her on numerous occasions that he would have filed and ran for congress as an Libertarian Party candidate if that have been possible at the time.

    Currently and at that time, the only way for a Libertarian candidate to run for office in Oklahoma is to run as an Independent or a Republican.

    As a long time and well recognized Ron Paul supporter and given the choice of only Independent or Republican, RJ felt it best to run in the Republican party as opposed to Independent; not only to benefit his own campaign, but so that he could indorse and be endorsed by the likes of the Rand Paul, Jon Dennis, and Debra Medina.

    RJ has joined and is a dues paying member of the LP party.

  12. whatever

    those questioning RJ’s commitment to the Libertarian Party because of his previous Oklahoma congressional run as a Republican

    There are probably more questions about his present associations with slaughtering innocent people in middle Asia than his previous party labels.

  13. Robert Milnes

    No, LG. This is typical rightist domination of the easy going LP. Overwhelm and dominate.
    The more rightists in the LP-lifetime membership is easy & pretty cheap-the more candidates they can run & the more they dominate & get the nomination-keeping it from someone more worthy-MARY-& determine by-laws, agenda & policies etc.

  14. Gains

    RM @23:

    Domination in politics is not based on who has more candidates. It is who has more voters.

    For the “rightests” to dominate, the others must first fail at bringing people.

  15. AroundtheblockAFT

    #20, interesting observation and one more reason that each state LP should select its own presidential candidate. As a “favorite son” perhaps Harris could achieve the ballot threshold and secure the OklaLP’s future – something that appears near impossible for any out of stater running for president.

  16. Rob

    “We have to remember here that the LP currently only represents about 1-3% of the electorate, if most elections are any indication.”

    Let me know when a LP presidential candidate gets 1-3 percent of the popular vote. A “big name” like Barr could not bring the goods. I don’t think smaller names like Root or an even smaller name like Harris (who apparently thinks we need to have smaller government while drawing down a government salary) will do any better.

  17. Steve

    RJ Harris was something of a folk hero to the Ron Paul grassroots. Paul’s movement represented the biggest opportunity to grow the LP in 2008, but Barr botched it by snubbing their hero. After that it was hard for me to even go back to my fellow hardcore Paul supporters and get even their vote. Since Paul is likely to run again, and sadly unlikely to win the R nomination, there will again be a lot of small-l libertarian voters with no where to go. If Harris can bring them in, he’d be a great choice for the LP nomination.

  18. Robert Milnes

    Steve @29. Interesting link.
    Here’s the problem, Steve. Ron Paul & C4L & Barr & your Iowa R. Senator & RJ the Forward Air Controller aka airstrike caller, are-more or less-counterrevolutionaries. Who are insinuating themselves into the real, peaceful libertarian movement. & evidently drawing heat from DHS.’Perhaps by association with paramilitary groups.
    Although I’m sure the real peaceful libertarian movement gets its own heat from DHS.
    & also there is the problem of trying & succeeding to get otherwise real, peaceful leftists to support same counterrevolutionaries.
    Although I’ll admit it is a wash as to which to support, counterrevolutionaries or Obama democrat reactionaries.
    Again, I call on radical libertarians to straighten out this situation.
    The Original Nolan Amendment. ASAP.
    & No More for Ron Paul!
    NM4RP!

  19. whatever

    RJ Harris was something of a folk hero to the Ron Paul grassroots.

    Is this a joke? To whom exactly was he a “hero,” and how and why? Wasn’t he too busy slaughtering people in Afghanistan?

    Adam Kokesh was a hero to the Ron Paul grassroots…. This guy? I spent a good amount of time among Ron Paul grassroots and treeroots and more, and I never heard of this murderous doofus.

  20. Jonathan M Henthorn

    @27 and @29. I happen to know that it is the case that RJ has a long term vision to drastically increase ballot access for Libertarian Candidates; not just in Oklahoma but across the Republic.

    He also intends to put a couple of key battle ground states into a 3-way contention by pulling in Civil Libertarians from the Democratic Party and Constitutional Conservatives from the Republican Party which will put the Libertarian Party on pace for forever shatter the failed left-right paradigm.

    Certainly this plan, properly executed, could turn into a White House victory in 2012; BUT that is not the only or even the most important measure of victory on this battle field.

  21. Kevin Knedler

    We need to start meeting these candidates ahead of the LP national convention in May 2012. Suggest Mr. Harris start to attend LP state conventions, if he is serious. There is no front runner at this point.

  22. George Whitfield

    Hi Kevin, #37. It is my impression that RJ Harris is very serious. I understand that he will return from his National Guard unit’s deployment in Afghanistan in August. And I agree, he should then start attending the LP state conventions as you suggest.

  23. TinFoilCap, Facemask & JockeyShorts to Match

    ROFL !! I go away for a week and #33 JMH tells us this possible baby killer Harris has a plan to win in 2012! Even Milnes knows it takes cold hard cash to even be in the discussion. The plan is a workable sernario, however Obama is working on raising that billion ($1,000,000,000) as Harris is “working” for Obama in faraway “Infideland”! Ain’t raising NO money while he’s over there !!

    @28 Rob has a very good take on the matter. The LP is just FULL of hypocrits. I put up with them in the eighties and nineties and they’re still trying to run the Party. When they actually shouldn’t even be allowed to represent the Party !!!
    Rob said, “I don’t think smaller names like Root or an even smaller name like Harris (who apparently thinks we need to have smaller government while drawing down a government salary) will do any better.”
    Get a private sector job before you try to represent the LP ! Now that’s a thought – !!!!!!! That should get some blood rising…Bravo Rob for pointing that one out !

    I’m in the camp of “more the better”. As I’ve stated before, I was introduced to libetarianism through a book. You can reach far more 21st century people by the spoken word and media than by books (what’s the figure? 3% read books now?!). If they (the candidates) are presenting a minimum 80-85% libertarian message I say welcome into the race! Sometimes however (’08) you trim your platform so much you draw some rather odd (The Count? and Finer to name two) characters into the mix! If they understand and agree to the philosophy and can articulate the message they just help recruit new people to “our” side. So it’s always more the better, if the more are libertarians !!!

    @32 another good one whatever, a “belly laugh” for me!
    “Adam Kokesh was a hero to the Ron Paul grassroots…. This guy? I spent a good amount of time among Ron Paul grassroots and treeroots and more, and I never heard of this murderous doofus.”

    @37 KK says there is no frontrunner. Uh, anyone talked to the Root people about this opinion ? With gas headed to $5 a gallon and gov caused inflation kicking in heavier by the day, the majority of so-called “left” Libertarians will be more conserned with surviving the DEPRESSION than showing up in Vegas next spring. The POed Rs that have flooded the Party the past two decades will have the money to show up. Who wins out of the named entries if only the “right” wing delegates show up ???

    Not Milnes !!!

  24. Here's a radical idea

    Never heard of Milnes. Couldn’t spot him in a police lineup. Nobody else could either.

  25. From my view

    Last I checked the soldiers answer to higher authorities and the buck stops with President. Of course radical libertarians that want no government and anarchy would have no concept of that. Can you imagine the chaos and riots that would result with no government in the USA. Millions would ultimately be begging for anything to bring calm, even some dictator. There has to be some balance if a Libertarian wants to get elected to Federal office at any level.

  26. Austin Battenberg

    I like RJ Harris. I don’t know if I would pick him over the other candidates…but he isn’t exactly a “extreme right winger” like some people on this board want to portray. Just check out his issues page…it seems pretty libertarian to me.

  27. JJ Calvin

    I have known RJ in High School. His limited government roots are strong. When I first met him during the second half of our Junior year, he carried a pocket constitution around with him. If it wasn’t on his person, it was in his car. All of the ideas that he mentions on his website, he held those in High School as well. Some candidates change their beliefs to match their audience, not RJ. Some people change their beliefs as time passes, not RJ.

  28. paulie

    Some people change their beliefs as time passes, not RJ.

    I hope he’s changed at least some of his beliefs. He notes that he voted for Pat Buchanan and George W. Bush (twice!)

  29. paulie

    He rejects our platform position on abortion.

    The current LP plank on abortion recognizes that people in good conscience (I would presume that includes party members and candidates) can hold differing views on this issue.

    Additionally, the LP plank is confusing, since it says that government should take no position on abortion.

    If you believe government should exist at all, it pretty much has to take a position of some sort: in protecting abortionists from attack, just as it would any other legal business or activity, if abortion is legal.

    Since most libertarians are not anarchists, most of you therefore reject a literal interpretation of the party’s current abortion plank.

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