DENVER, COLORADO—During an election season where voters have expressed unprecedented dissatisfaction with their choices and over 30% of Coloradan voters are unaffiliated, Club 20, a “non-partisan coalition” has excluded Libertarian Party Senatorial Candidate Lily Tang Williams from their debate forum scheduled for September 10, 2016. In a statement to Williams, Club 20 has stated its Bylaws require any included candidate to represent at least 1% of registered voters “within the district” and that since the Libertarian Party held .977% of registered voters, she would be excluded over a mere and petty .03%–effectively silencing all but the Republican and Democrat perspectives. LPCO Chair Jay North issued the following statement:
Club 20 claims to be non-partisan yet is failing to give adequate representation to third-party and independent voices while similar non-partisan groups, such as Action 22 in Pueblo, have no such Bylaws requirements. The significant numbers of Coloradans who have made clear statements by their refusal to affiliate with either of the two old parties deserve to have an alternate view heard. The electoral system has become a joke where minor party and independent voices are suppressed by exclusion from debates, polling, and coverage creating the classic chicken and egg scenario: meet arbitrary litmus tests in order to be included, and yet without being included in polls, coverage, and debates, it is nearly impossible to meet these conditions—and this is by design. There are over 35,000 Libertarians in Colorado that have just been told that they don’t matter—and specifically, there are about eight western counties in the area covered by Club 20 in which registered Libertarians do in fact exceed 1% of registered voters.
If you would like more information about this topic, please contact Caryn Ann Harlos at 561.523.2250 or email at CommunicationsDirector@LPColorado.org.
A printable copy of this Press Release can be found here.