LNC Convention Oversight Committee: 2020 Libertarian National Convention in Austin Reservations Cancelled (Updated)

4/28 UPDATE: Based on the comments below, it appears the hotel sent notice about canceled reservations in error.  No changes to the convention can be made until the Zoom meeting scheduled for May 2.

The following update on the 2020 Libertarian National Convention was posted on the site for the LNC Oversight Committee. Thanks to Root’s Teeth Are Awesome for the link in the Open Thread.

Without any direction by the Libertarian Party and without notice, all reservations to the JW Marriott-Austin for the Libertarian National Convention, scheduled for May 20th – May 26th, 2020, were cancelled early on the morning of April 26th, 2020. We had been working with the JW Austin and reaching out to other venues in order to plan a postponement that incorporated social distancing.

The Libertarian National Committee has a pre-scheduled teleconference meeting regarding the convention scheduled for Saturday, May 2nd, at which they are able to officially take action(s) regarding the 2020 Libertarian National Convention.

We apologize to our members for the manner in which this occurred. The cancellation was not a surprise, but the lack of a notice to Convention Oversight Committee and staff and the manner in which the reservations were worded are the parts that are disturbing.

The Convention Oversight Committee has already been looking for other venues in Austin and other cities with dates in July of 2020, as a potential contingency.

We thank you for your understanding, support, and patience during these difficult times.

Be well,
Daniel Hayes
Chair, LNC Convention Oversight Committee

See also:

16 thoughts on “LNC Convention Oversight Committee: 2020 Libertarian National Convention in Austin Reservations Cancelled (Updated)

  1. Thomas Knapp

    The headline does not resemble the story.

    It especially doesn’t resemble “the rest of the story,” which is that the JW Marriott subsequently notified those whose reservations had been canceled that it was a technical error.

    As for the LNC “taking action,” there’s no action for it to take. The bylaws empower the LNC to set the time and place of the convention. It has done so. Authority to make further decisions such as postponement or change of venue belongs to the delegates, not to the LNC.

  2. Kevin

    Not notifying interested parties is unprofessional and unethical.
    Cancelling an in-person convention without preparing for an online convention is unintelligent.
    The LP has about zero credibility on many levels.

  3. Thomas Knapp

    Well, except that it wasn’t the LP that canceled the reservations, nor has the LP canceled the convention. So any credibility problems you might see with the LP have nothing to do with either of those two things.

  4. Paulie

    It has not been cancelled evidently or otherwise. There was some sort of glitch on the hotel’s end which was later corrected. May 2 remains the date on which changes may happen. Prevailing attitude seems to be a move to July and possibly also to las Vegas either right before or after freedomfest or over July 4 weekend. None of that is official.

    I have not seen the argument before that the time and place can’t be changed by lnc. It’s been changed other years. I remember one year it was supposed to be in los Angeles and then got moved. Trying to remember which year.

  5. William Saturn Post author

    Title changed to “2020 Libertarian National Convention in Austin Reservations Cancelled (Updated)”

    Text added: “4/28 UPDATE: Based on the comments below, it appears the hotel sent notice about canceled reservations in error.  No changes to the convention can be made until the Zoom meeting scheduled for May 2.”

  6. Thomas Knapp

    “Prevailing attitude seems to be a move to July and possibly also to las Vegas either right before or after freedomfest or over July 4 weekend. None of that is official.”

    Nor can it be official until and unless the delegates assemble May 21 in Austin and so decide.

    The bylaws empower the LNC to choose the time and place of the convention, and it has done so. Any changes to that time and place belong to the delegates.

  7. paulie

    I meant can’t be changed by the LNC prior after they announce a date and time initially. Sorry if that wasn’t obvious from context and my prior comment.

  8. Thomas Knapp

    Paulie,

    In that case, the answer to your question is two-fold.

    First of all, when the bylaws empower the LNC to do a specific thing, other related things that are left unmentioned are not among its powers. The bylaws empower the LNC to set the time and place of the convention. Since they do not empower the LNC to change the time and place of the convention, it has no such power.

    Secondly, it is a decision of the type which hands something over to another body. Once the LNC has set the time and place of the convention, it belongs to the delegates, not to the LNC.

  9. paulie

    First of all, when the bylaws empower the LNC to do a specific thing, other related things that are left unmentioned are not among its powers. The bylaws empower the LNC to set the time and place of the convention. Since they do not empower the LNC to change the time and place of the convention, it has no such power.

    It probably never occurred to anyone that it has to be listed as a separate power.

    You’re using a sense of set that I haven’t seen anyone else use or consider. When I set an appointment, I can generally reschedule, as can the other party. It also doesn’t make sense. If the hotel pancakes or the city it’s in is burning you can’t reschedule? That sounds off. I’ve not come across that interpretation anywhere else, never thought of it myself, and can think of one contradicting example which I mentioned above.

    Secondly, it is a decision of the type which hands something over to another body.

    No, it just sets a time and place. The delegates don’t decide exactly when and where the following convention will be, either. At least not that I have ever seen.

  10. Kevin Bjornson

    I must agree with Paulie over the wording. Thomas has linguistic talent, but is not infallible. Setting the time and place does not mean there can be no change. For instance, employers generally have a right to set the conditions under which they will hire people. That doesn’t mean they can’t change the conditions. Or, I have the right to decide what I will wear, that doesn’t mean I have to wear the same clothes everyday.

    I’m still confused as to why the LNC thinks the delay contemplated will solve the problem. Because the virus will still be a problem.

    Ruth B. is under the impression that an online convention would be too difficult. Yet she offered no reasons. Generally, people can read 4x as fast as they can speak. Because the human vocal cords have an upper limit of about 300wpm, while 2000wpm is a reasonable speed for reading.

    No special software would be needed. Simply publish the convention on YouTube or similar venue. Delegates could vote by sending e-mails; there could be a separate e-address for each candidate, and for resolutions, one for yes and another for no. Delegates could make comments that would scroll on the right side of the video.

    The LNC clings to physical conventions because that is how they get elected: simply screen out most people by requiring delegates to travel and spend a lot of money. This selective pressure favoring the most dedicated, screens out normal people with other obligations, who would prefer to avoid the freak show that LP conventions have become. If the convention were online, there would be greater participation and most current LNC members would not be re-elected.

  11. paulie

    The contract with Austin has been cancelled. And there will be a meeting in a week to decide on a new place and time for some time before July 15.

  12. paulie

    Joshua Smith
    10 mins

    We have voted to pass: “Move to postpone the 2020 convention to an alternate date/location to be chosen by the LNC to a new physical location to take place no later than July 15, with a decision made by the LNC no later than ten days from today by electronic meeting.”

    The vote tally is below. I will explain my vote in the comments.

    Bilyeu Yes

    Bishop-Henchman No

    Ford No

    Goldstein Yes

    Hagan Yes

    Harlos Yes

    Hewitt Yes

    Lark Yes

    Longstreth No

    Mattson Yes

    Merced No

    Nekhaila No

    Phillips No

    Redpath No

    Sarwark (Presiding)

    Smith Yes

    Van Horn Yes

    Yes 9

    No 7

    Presiding 1

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