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George Phillies: No Debate Planned Between National Chair Candidates at Convention

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I have just received word that due to ‘scheduling constraints’ there will be no debate between national chair candidates.

Those of you around in 1998 will recall that the chair debate was decisive in determining who was the next national chair — with disastrous consequences for our party.

We have had debates at every event since. The lack of a debate should be seen for what it is, namely an attempt by various factions to rig the outcome in favor of their candidate.


George Phillies is a long-time LP activist, and is a physics professor in Massachusetts

About Post Author

Jill Pyeatt

Jill Pyeatt is a small-business owner and jewelry designer from Southern California. She currently serves on the Judicial Committee of the Libertarian Party of CA. She can be found on Facebook and Twitter.


  1. paulie paulie April 3, 2012

    and you know damn well until I have a free 8 to 10 hrs I cant ask Andy about anyone I know he doesnt like


  2. paulie paulie April 3, 2012

    didnt he vote against the floor fee P?

    I don’t think so, but I’ll check.

  3. LibertarianGirl LibertarianGirl April 2, 2012

    didnt he vote against the floor fee P? and you know damn well until I have a free 8 to 10 hrs I cant ask Andy about anyone I know he doesnt like…lol( no offense Andy , you jst put LOTS of details in your story telling)

  4. Tom Blanton Tom Blanton April 2, 2012

    Having a debate for national chair candidates seems to be such a waste of valuable convention time. This time would be much better spent with talks from former LP candidates explaining how they didn’t lose as badly as other LP candidates.

    Why can’t a committee chaired by Wayne Root simply select and appoint the next LP chair. Root could pick the chair and the members could quickly rubber-stamp his selection. Of course, the members of this committee should be widely diverse, representing Reagan-Libertarians, Netanyahu-Libertarians, Authoritarian-Libertarians, Randroid Liberventionists, and Gary Johnson supporters.

    Root has the bold leadership and dynamic personality, not to mention the teeth, to put a hard-charging can-do political expert like Roger Stone in place as the LNC chair.

    I’d be interested to know what members of the Big Bang Theory Social Skills Caucus thinks about this idea. They are always able to predict the perceptions of others with their fancy political algorithms.

  5. paulie paulie April 2, 2012

    Ask Andy about him some time. Or George Phillies.

  6. paulie paulie April 2, 2012

    who’s running for Vice Chair???

    Bill Redpath. I’ve heard a rumor that Angelia O’Dell is running also but have not seen it yet myself. I should probably ask her.

    We also both know someone else who may run but I’m not sure I am allowed to announce it yet. You’d think it’s funny though.

  7. LibertarianGirl LibertarianGirl April 2, 2012

    who’s running for Vice Chair???

    wes. I know you have your issues with Hinkle . but I hope if you get voted out you send your delegates his way …Rutherford ( whom i like very much as a person and could do the job) we know is affiliated ith Root and friends and could be expected to vote with them im betting 100% of the time …. no offense to Mark..if anyone has evidence of him being autonomous in his decision making and not voting with his faction , id love to see it…like i said previously , not being beholden to your ” friends” or “faction” and havingn the courage to do what you think is right is my most important deciding factor…. everyside thinksMark works for the other , Im reminded of the statement ” if people are mad at you , GOOD , it means you stood up for something”

  8. Ken Moellman Ken Moellman April 2, 2012

    “In 2008, various groups put on a series of presidential debates at the national convention.”

    I was involved with that. It was a HUGE success. It was also costly.

    IMO, the LNC Chair debate should have been included with the convention. It’s party business.

    Maybe there would be more time if we used IRV for the presidential nomination. We could all vote for our presidential candidate with IRV, then hold the LNC Chair debate. Then announce the results of the presidential IRV election, and then vote on the Chairmanship with IRV too. Go back to business, and when the results are tallied for Chair, announce those too.

    I am 100% pro-efficiency.

  9. B4Liberty B4Liberty April 1, 2012

    It is not too late to run for chair this year John Jay.

  10. John Jay Myers John Jay Myers April 1, 2012

    2 Years ago me and 4 other candidates for National Chair were touring around the country trying to get our message out there.

    This time around nothing.

    This type of campaign would have been much softer on my wallet.

  11. Sane LP member Sane LP member April 1, 2012

    Some states have their shit together and some don’t. Simple as that. It’s called Leadership and organization.

  12. wolfefan wolfefan April 1, 2012

    I’m sympathetic to the LP, but it’s hard to trust a group of folks to select someone to run the country when they can’t even run a state convention, let alone a national one.

  13. Jill Pyeatt Jill Pyeatt Post author | April 1, 2012

    GP @ 10: Maybe the LNC is taking cues from the CA convention of a month ago: It got to be noon on Sunday, and many of the presidential candidates who had traveled all the way to California to speak still had no idea what was going on that afternoon.

  14. Wes Wagner Wes Wagner April 1, 2012

    JP @21

    We do have a hearing regarding dismissals on April 9th, but unfortunately there might be too many lies in the initial filing and thus prevent an outright dismissal. We actually have to get further into the process to actually close this issue out. We’ll see how that goes.

    Beyond the fact that many of the incumbents have grievously violated the autonomy of affiliates in their attempts to take complete control of the organization, they have had a majority for over 4 years and a performance record to show for it.

  15. Jill Pyeatt Jill Pyeatt Post author | April 1, 2012

    WW @ 20: See, I already know you! I’d LOVE to hear you debate those two! Frankly, though, you probably really shouldn’t discuss Oregon because of the pending litigation, although just hearing about that would make others ask about it.

  16. Wes Wagner Wes Wagner April 1, 2012

    JP @19

    I am most certainly not a hold-up, nor would I be. 🙂

  17. Jill Pyeatt Jill Pyeatt Post author | April 1, 2012

    BH @ 14: If I started a petition, it would be to simply ask them to hold a debate. It wouldn’t involve the Judicial Committee. Although the question has sparked discussion here and on my FB page, no one seems to think an organized effort like a petition is a good idea.

    I really think it would be a mistake for the candidates for chair not to debate. Perhaps I’ll try writing to the three of them and ask them to reconsider. I suspect Mr. Wagner isn’t the hold-up, though.

  18. paulie paulie April 1, 2012

    It should be noted that there’s nothing at all to stop anyone from putting together a debate for the candidates for chair.

    In 2008, various groups put on a series of presidential debates at the national convention. In 2004, there was a vice-presidential debate organized outside of the convention committee’s purview.

    Good idea.

    For example, if Hinkle and Rutherford are avoiding debating Wagner, they could schedule an informal debate between just the two of them.

  19. Thomas L. Knapp Thomas L. Knapp April 1, 2012


    I suspect that Jill’s petition would be a non-binding petition to the convention committee asking them to schedule a debate, not a petition to the Judicial Committee asking them to overturn an action of the LNC.

    It should be noted that there’s nothing at all to stop anyone from putting together a debate for the candidates for chair.

    In 2008, various groups put on a series of presidential debates at the national convention. In 2004, there was a vice-presidential debate organized outside of the convention committee’s purview.

  20. Michael H. Wilson Michael H. Wilson April 1, 2012

    I would like to see a debate between the candidates for most of the offices and at large reps.

    This planned dysfunction on the board has to come to a halt.

  21. Wes Wagner Wes Wagner April 1, 2012

    BH @14

    I think JP was meaning this to be a petition for redress that has about as much effect as those sent to congress.

    Alternatively, changing the convention schedule is something the delegates can do with an open vote if they are unhappy with the proposed schedule.

  22. Brian Holtz Brian Holtz April 1, 2012

    @1 What Bylaw or Convention Rule is violated by not having a debate for LNC Chair?

  23. Brian Holtz Brian Holtz April 1, 2012

    @11 PlatCom’s proposal for the abortion plank is not “news from the LNC”, and it’s not even news at all. I reported on it four months ago:

    “Why single out abortion?” is a question that is self-answering when asked about a plank called “Abortion”.

    At least four of us have signed onto a minority report that proposes to replace the 1.4 Abortion plank with this:

    1.4 Procreation

    Recognizing that when human rights begin is a sensitive issue on which Libertarians can disagree in good faith, we believe that government should not restrict, subsidize, or dictate the decision to begin or end one’s pregnancy.

  24. Michael H. Wilson Michael H. Wilson April 1, 2012

    As a matter of fact George I don’t think the government should pay for medical treatments of officer who get social diseases while on their own time.

    If an officer gets the clap or any other social disease then they pay for all treatments. Make that a plank.

  25. George Phillies George Phillies April 1, 2012

    In other bizarre news from the LNC, there is a platform proposal to alter the abortion plank to identify one and only one medical treatment that the government should not cover with taxes, to wit abortions.

    OF course, this includes medical coverage for soldiers and diplomats in remote parts of the world, e.g, Marine embassy guards, who have no other credible medical care sources.

    The question is: Why single out abortion? Why not single out as not-to-be-paid-for-with-taxes medical treatment for people who visit a local whorehouse and come down with the clap?*

    The answer, of course, is that once again the LNC leadership is cuddling up to Republican religious extremists who are not even entirely supported within their own bizarre party.

  26. George Phillies George Phillies April 1, 2012

    Unlike years past LP News has not even contacted LNC candidates, or made public notice by putting on their web site, that they have an issue of LP news appearing in which statements might be published.

  27. Dr. Tom Stevens Dr. Tom Stevens April 1, 2012

    There is so much more. Carla Howell just stated that 4 of the non-listed LP Presidential Candidates who submitted their requested 175 word statements will now NOT be listed in LP News because of a lack of available space.

    SURE – no room for 700 words! I believe that!

  28. DBM you placed your comments in the wrong place. The Open thread section is set aside for the CULT Paul supporters and other comments!

    I don’t understand if a debate is good or not! Just because candidate A is a better — USED CAR SALESMAN than candidate B & C doesn’t equal a better Chair or any position.

    Please Share these with friends and family, Thanks –

    Drug use is a personal choice –

    War on Drugs – Mark Grannis-

    “Libertarians Are The Party People” –

    I grew hemp – George Washington –

  29. Obviousman Obviousman March 31, 2012

    “Scheduling constraints?”


    The real reason is rather obvious: A debate amongst the Chair candidates will include Wes Wagner, and by extension the Oregon situation will become a front-and-center issue, and both Hinkle and Rutherford don’t want that embarrassment, because it will torpedo them both in front of the delegates that they need to vote for them.

    If I were a delegate, and thankfully I’m not, I’d work to get that debate added, just to see the looks on those two’s faces when it comes up. I predict it will vary between purpled outrage and deer-in-the-headlights.


    I’m contacting every Nevada assemblymen and state senator to give us back our WRITE-IN BALLOT by November so we can write in RON PAUL as President. YOU NEED TO DO THE SAME IN YOUR STATE. It’s only right. Paul’s the only candidate that will save America. A vote for Obama, Romney, Santorum, or Gingrich is a vote for more of the same, the further communization of America. All four of them belong to the Council On Foreign Relations, commonly referred to as America’s shadow government. Visit The John Birch Society – the barometer of what’s really Conservative (neocons aren’t) – to learn more about the quasi-communistic CFR: In short, the CFR is an organization dedicated to handing over America’s sovereignty to the United Nations. Research it if you don’t believe me. REAL CHRISTIANS AND REAL AMERICAN CONSERVATIVES WANT ONLY RON PAUL AS AMERICA’S NEXT PRESIDENT.

    DEAN BERRY MINISTRIES: “When a government outlaws ‘terrorism’, they’re planning something for which ‘terrorism’ is the only recourse. Obviously.”

  31. George Phillies George Phillies March 31, 2012

    This happens almost every convention. There is no chair debate planned, and one has to be inserted.

    Note also that all the LNC elections are now scheduled for Sunday. The net result may be that, oh, we are so sorry, but the Judicial Committee Elections were not quite reached, and the LNC gets to appoint the new Judicial Committee, as happened a few cycles ago.

  32. Jill Pyeatt Jill Pyeatt Post author | March 31, 2012

    I am of the opinion that the race for Chair is more important to the future of the party than the presidential nominee. I’m willing to start a petition, like Brad Ploeger did about the floor fees, to ask them to schedule a debate, if there seems to be enough interest.

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