The mainstream media has begun to pay a little more attention to Libertarian Gary Johnson as of late, and has begun to bring out the spoiler card. Despite polling between 6 and 9%, according to the media it all comes from disaffected Republicans.
Libertarian presidential candidates typically struggle to win even 1 percent of the vote in the critical electoral bloc of Arizona, Colorado, Nevada and New Mexico. But Johnson isn’t a typical libertarian nominee. He’s a former two-term New Mexico governor with a greater familiarity with elections and campaigning.
Given the competitive nature of those states — to varying degrees, all are expected to be close in November — it wouldn’t take much to affect the outcome in any of them.
According to recent polls from PPP, a Democratic firm, Johnson draws 7 percent in Colorado and 9 percent in Arizona. In May, a poll done for the Democratic group Patriot Majority had Johnson at 12 percent in his home state of New Mexico.
Much, but not all, of Johnson’s support is coming out of Romney’s hide. And that could be a problem going forward for Republicans because as the Libertarian Party nominee, anywhere Johnson qualifies for the ballot, he provides a safe harbor for disaffected Ron Paul supporters in November.
Read the rest at Politico: The GOP’s Gary Johnson quandary
His recent visit to Denver, Colorado also got him some coverage from the Denver Post.
Johnson’s strengths introduce an interesting dynamic: If the presidential race in Colorado is as close as some pundits predict, Johnson could end up being compared with third-party candidates Ralph Nader in 2000 and Ross Perot in 1992, viewed as spoilers in those presidential races.
Which party would likely benefit from a Johnson surge?
During a campaign swing through Colorado — where he marched in the gay-rights PrideFest on Sunday and spoke in favor of a ballot measure to regulate marijuana like alcohol Monday — Johnson downplayed such speculation.
“I’ve never viewed myself as a spoiler because I believe I’m going to take equally from both sides,” Johnson said just before a news conference at a Denver medical-marijuana business.
“Mitt Romney talks about balancing the budget, but he talks about growing the military and holding Medicaid harmless. Well, I did finish second-grade math, and it doesn’t add up,” Johnson said. “I want to repeal the Patriot Act. I want to end the drug war. I’m better than President Obama on civil liberties.”
Read the rest at DenverPost.com: Presidential hopeful Gary Johnson, Libertarian from New Mexico, attempts to woo voters
And finally, Newsmax wanted to weight in on the spoiler idea.
The Libertarian candidate says his uphill campaign would be a lot easier if he were allowed to debate on the same stage with Obama and Romney. That would give him, he told the Post, “a real possibility of winning.”
But, he added, “If I do end up in the spoiler role, that’s more attention to the issues then.”
Read more on Newsmax.com: Libertarian Gary Johnson: ‘I’m No Spoiler’
Gary Johnson is a two term Governor of New Mexico and is running for President as the Libertarian Party nominee.