Update on LPEX; Analysis of Political Affiliation of the Speakers

lpex tropicana

There has been an updated version of the Libertarian Expo (LPEX) website posted.
LPEX is an event planned for May 28 to 31, 2015 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The site lists the following as a reason for the event:

LPEX was established to help grow the Liberty Movement by connecting people, organizations, technology and ideas. LPEX was established to help grow the Liberty Movement by connecting people, organizations, technology and ideas. LPEX aggregates the best aspects of the Liberty Movement and provides vital leadership training in the form of workshops, panelists and speakers.

Here are the updated links

 

I have done an analysis of the political affiliation of the speakers. Many of the speakers are current or past state legislators, so that information is readily available, and the rest of the info was gathered by doing Internet searches. It was taken of the speakers listed on the site as of April 19, 2015. The results of my informal analysis are as follows:

Eight of the speakers identify as members of the Libertarian Party; one identifies as a Democrat; one identifies as a small “l” libertarian (Larry Elder, who has been known to speak of his political views as “Republitarian”); one independent; one who identifies as being part of the “liberty movement”; and 13 of the 25 speakers (55 %) identify as Republicans.

In addition to the Expo, there will be the annual conventions for both the Libertarian Party of CA and the Libertarian Party of Nevada. Also, the LSLA (Libertarian State Leaders Association) will also have their annual business meeting.

I had an opportunity to speak with Mr. Pojunis for a while this evening by telephone. When asked about the high proportion of Republicans speaking at the Expo, he pointed out that Republicans had swept the last election. His goal for this first Expo is to train attendees with some new, successful blood, and that just happened to be Republicans in his state. He has a good working relationship with several of the state legislators, and when he asked for their help, they said “yes”.

I took some notes about other things going on in his state party, and will put that together in another article later this week.

8 thoughts on “Update on LPEX; Analysis of Political Affiliation of the Speakers

  1. Thomas L. Knapp

    The phrase “liberty movement” should have been a dead giveaway. It’s a favorite among Republican astro-turfers trying to avoid the word “libertarian.”

  2. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    I talk about the “liberty movement” in the Los Angeles area, but I don’t mean it in a negative way. I use it to show a distinction between people who understand working toward freedom for everyone and those who don’t (the usual members of the Republican and Democratic parties). True, we might disagree on how to get to that freedom. The group often includes Republicans, but only the libertarian leaning Republicans, but it also includes small “l” libertarians and independents. Sometimes it might even include a Democrat or two. What else can be use to describe a coalition, such as the informal group that showed up to protest the city of Irwindale trying to shut down a Siraccha plant? “Liberty movement” doesn’t mean Republican to me. The term just means “Libertarians” and like-minded people.

  3. Andy Craig

    Just at our monthly meeting in Milwaukee, we’ve had the conservative Republican alderman and mayoral candidate make his pitch on wasteful spending projects, even though we disagree with him on some criminal justice issues. We’ve had a liberal Democratic State Rep. candidate come talk about her frustration getting urban Democrats to come around on school choice and education reform, even though we still disagreed with her on some spending questions. I think such opportunities are not only good, they provide value to our members.

    I’m not saying this is quite the same thing going on here, but I wouldn’t per se reject a major-party elected officeholder who wanted to address a Libertarian event. I take it not as a matter of us endorsing them, but them respecting us as worth the time and effort to try to earn our votes, which isn’t a bad thing. Where that crosses the line into the LP *promoting* other-party candidates and officeholders is a fair question that’s up for debate, but I wouldn’t advise any kind of hard rule against it. Having somebody as a speaker or discussion panel member, is not the same as endorsing them for future elections, and it doesn’t even mean ruling out running a Libertarian against them in the future.

  4. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    I just spent quite a few minutes on the phone with Brett. His energy level and commitment to the LP is impressive. His vision is for this event to be annual. Apparently, a couple of the training groups have already signed on for next year. I believe he said it was planned for February of 2016.

    I’ve said it here before, and I’m sincere when I say that I hope this goes well. Several states are sending a group out to be trained for their state.

  5. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    I’ve had many different types of people speak at our Region meetings. My goal has been to bring in people who are active with issues that Libertarians support. I have problems sometimes, (such as the time when our speaker wore a Che Guevara t-shirt, and admitted to being a socialist-this upset one of my members), but for the most part I think it’s good for us to realize other people believe what we do. It seems to me that it’s easier to recruit someone to the LP when they share at least one issue with us.

    Something I find important is the speaker’s pattern of success. If the individual has been successful at a career or with a political issue, this is someone we should be able to learn from.
    Many of the speakers at LPEX are current or prior legislators. Surely they can teach us a thing or two about how to get elected.

  6. Joshua Katz

    I agree with all that, but, if I’m not mistaken, there is one elected Libertarian speaking at this event (an event which I am attending and am very excited about.) Surely Libertarians who managed to get elected to office have quite a bit to teach Libertarians who wish to get elected to office – and this lesson might be different from the type of lesson an elected Republican would teach. I’m not saying we need to only learn from Libertarians out of some sort of purity – I’m saying it would be good to learn from both, and that some things that elected Republicans do might not work for Libertarains.

  7. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    I feel much better about it after speaking with Brett. He knows successful people, and wants them to help us learn how to be successful. That’s hard to argue with.

    Joshua, I hope to meet you! We’ll arrive sometime Saturday.

  8. Mark Axinn

    Josh–

    Although I have publicized LPEX here, I don’t think anyone from New York will attend so Brett and you will be our reps.

    Full disclosure: Brett and Josh are both former New Yorkers and each has a connection to Rochester where we are holding our state convention on Saturday.

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