Recently I conducted an interview for Wikinews with 2020 Libertarian Party presidential candidate Adam Kokesh.
See an excerpt below:
WNWhy did you join the Libertarian Party?
- Kokesh: I joined the Libertarian Party first in my mind in high school because at some point I was given the choice between being a Republican or Democrat and thought, “Wait a second! This is America! I’m supposed to have a choice, right? I don’t have to be lame, do I?” Fortunately, I found the LP, but at first, mainly because I thought pretty much every politician I’d ever seen on TV was a crooked asshole. (I had never seen a Libertarian on TV at that point. It’s still rare!) It wasn’t until reading Rothbard about ten years later that I came to understand what the party and the philosophy were really all about.
WNIn 2016, the Libertarian Party’s presidential nominee Gary Johnson received 3.28 percent of the popular vote, the most of any previous Libertarian presidential nominee. What can you do as the party’s nominee to increase the vote share?
- Kokesh: For the last three election cycles, the LP has pursued the losing strategy of hiding behind someone who we like and we think others will like, but doesn’t represent what we believe. It’s time for the LP to elect a libertarian again. If we can do this — it doesn’t matter if it’s me or any of the other great potential nominees — we’re going to win a lot more votes! As for me personally, I think my advantages are that I’m good at making the message easy to understand and relate to, I have a broad base of existing support and name ID, and being a combat veteran gives me a unique advantage in challenging militarism, which is something our movement has struggled with. More importantly, I think there’s something very inauthentic in saying, “You should be free! But this guy should be your President!” My platform of the peaceful, orderly, and responsible dissolution of the federal government in which I resign on day one is the only one right now that addresses this problem and is in line with libertarian principles. This strategy of uniting under the principles of localization rather than fighting for ideology is how we (in the long term if only starting in 2020) build a winning coalition of independents, non-voters, and reluctant old party voters, to WIN not just get more votes.
WNAs President Trump learned early in his presidency, federal courts can effectively nullify controversial executive orders. If you are elected president, what will you do in the event a federal court rules your executive order creating a process to dissolve the federal government as unconstitutional?
- Kokesh: I don’t really care if someone in a black dress calls my policy unconstitutional because it IS unconstitutional. That’s kind of the point. We are invoking the higher authority outlined in the which says we have not only a right, but a duty to alter or abolish systems of government that no longer serve us. The old parties and their overlapping sponsors will never let a Libertarian win with 34% of the vote vs 33% and 33%. They will kill one of the old parties to keep the system going before they will let us win. To win on this platform or any other meaningful libertarian one, will require a clear mandate that is undeniable even if they cheat at the margins. When the American people decide that we are not going to put up with this nonsense any longer, no lackey in a suit in Washington is going to stand in our way.
Visit Wikinews to view the entire interview.