Could Joe Manchin Mount a Viable Campaign for President as an Independent?

Following his recent break with the Biden administration over the Build Back Better “social infrastructure” package, some are wondering where West Virginia Democrat Joe Manchin goes next.

He’s popular in his heavily Republican home state, but deeply unpopular with the national base of his own party. And his support on the right is more a function of their enjoyment at watching Biden’s agenda struggle in Congress, not genuine affection for the man causing the president’s heartburn.

Still, could a party change be in the air? Is this all part of some larger play on Manchin’s part?

Axios has reported that sources close to Manchin say he’s not looking to flip control of the U.S. Senate to Republicans, and that if he “bolts the Democratic Party, he’d be more likely to switch to independent — and caucus with the Democrats — than become a Republican.” Such a move would put him in a similar position to Bernie Sanders and Angus King.

Taegan Goddard of Political Wire recently floated the idea that this week’s events might all be part of laying the groundwork for a 2024 presidential candidacy:

It’s not hard to see an opening for an independent candidate in 2024 if an increasingly unpopular Joe Biden runs for re-election at age 82 against an already unpopular Donald Trump who will be 79.

Goddard notes that there has already been significant chatter about Manchin becoming an independent who caucuses with the Democrats. That could give him the political freedom he would need to begin building some kind of centrist independent ticket for 2024.

Of course, Manchin is not personally wealthy enough to self-fund such a campaign, and it’s not exactly clear how much grassroots appetite there would be for a conservative Democrat in terms of clearing ballot access hurdles. To achieve 50 state ballot access you either need an army of dedicated volunteers or a big bag of money to hire lawyers and petition collectors.

While I generally agree with Goddard’s assessment that 2024 could be ripe for a strong independent candidate if the two major parties nominate Trump and Biden again, keep in mind that Machin will be 76 years old by then. I think it’s far more likely that a serious third contender come from outside the political establishment, perhaps an entrepreneurial figure like Mark Cuban or Bob Iger.

It seems that Manchin appreciates the unique position he is in for 2022 as the 50th Democratic vote on every bill, and he’s simply squeezing as much juice out of that as he can with the understanding that his party is likely to lose control of the Senate altogether. Once that happens, he’ll be just another vote for the minority party.

If Manchin were to desire a run for president, perhaps seeing it as a capstone on his career, the most likely scenario would be to mount a semi-symbolic primary bid in 2024. It’s not hard to imagine a scenario where he harnesses some very real pockets of conservative Democrats, particularly in the South, in order to win delegates and have a voice at the national convention.

63 thoughts on “Could Joe Manchin Mount a Viable Campaign for President as an Independent?

  1. Austin Cassidy Post author

    Run with Trump? Yeah, no chance of that. lol

    Manchin voted guilty on both of the 2020 articles of impeachment and on the 2021 article for sedition. He has no use for Trump and Trump would have only one use for him, as a prop.

    “Today I voted guilty on the articles of impeachment brought against former President Trump to hold him accountable for his seditious actions and words that threatened our democracy. It is time to move forward as one nation to focus on helping Americans suffering from the pandemic. Now more than ever, it is on each of us to seek unity over division and put partisanship aside for the good of our country.”

  2. a@b

    Perhaps he’ll see the light and apologize for voting the wrong way on the impeachment attempts. People, including Senator Manchin, have been known to change their minds.

  3. Austin Cassidy Post author

    Seems highly unlikely, if he wanted to become a Republican he’d have done so a year ago.

    On the impeachment issue, we’ll have to agree to strongly disagree.

  4. a@b

    I’m not saying it will happen, just that it could. Democrats have been extremely nasty towards Senator Manchin in recent days, including harassing him in person, even people he no doubt considered friends of many years. Right now he has a lot of power that he will lose if and when Republicans get a Senate majority, so I’m thinking he will remain a Democrat, or at least an independent who caucuses with them, until next year’s election. Then it looks like Republicans will take the Senate and the way would be clear for him to switch.

    Having tasted a level of power he never had before this past year thanks to his tie breaking vote, he might look for a way to not lose that prominence. The Republicans would be in a position to offer him a number of things, like a leadership position in the Senate or perhaps the VP spot. The Democrats, aside from not liking him and not needing him as much anymore, wouldn’t have much to offer, and probably no mood to offer it if they could.

    What would he gain as a third party presidential candidate? Almost certainly not the presidency, or even a spot on the main debate stage. Perhaps electing the major party candidate he likes least. A lot of fruitless running around the country repeating his campaign speeches, and the enmity and hatred of one or both “sides.” It’s doubtful it would accomplish much of anything or be fun in any way.

  5. Austin Cassidy Post author

    Yeah, I don’t buy him as an independent candidate either. That’s why I suggested a more likely scenario is, if Biden doesn’t seek re-election, he runs as a conservative Democrat in the primaries. He would certainly win a good chunk of delegates and have a voice at the national convention, and it would act as a sort of capstone on his political career. Much easier ballot access, too.

  6. a@b

    I don’t think he wanted to become a Republican a year ago, and I don’t know that he intends to become one now. He did say today or very recently that if there’s no room for fiscal conservatives in the Democrat Party there’s no room for him there. That was probably being diplomatic. It’s likely that over the course of the next year it will become more and more clear to him that there is indeed no longer room for fiscal conservatives in the Democrat Party.

  7. Austin Cassidy Post author

    If he’s looking for real “fiscal conservatives” at this point, he’s not going to find them in control of either the Republican or Democratic party. The only difference between the major parties and their spending priorities of late has been who they want to hand the checks to.

  8. .

    Running as a Democrat in the primaries would not get him a lot of delegates. If Manchin represented a big chunk of that party, the Build Back Bolshevism bill would have a lot less than 48 or 49 Senators in support and would have never passed the House. It would get him a lot of booing and nasty confrontations with Democrat primary voters and donor’s. That sounds even less fun than running as a third party candidate. If Biden or Harris runs, they are not obligated to debate him either. If it’s a reasonably wide open primary he would probably qualify for some main stage debates, just to be skewered by the other candidates. Doesn’t sound like a smart move.

  9. .

    It all depends on what you mean by fiscal conservatives. Republicans are marginally better. I’ll grant that they could be a lot better than they are. Perhaps he’ll see his way to running for Governor again, or doing something else, like spending time with friends and family, a book tour or media gig, teaching college, sitting on corporate boards, whatever hobbies he’s into, etc.

  10. Nathan Norman

    Senator John Cornyn just sent a text inviting Manchin into the Republican Party.

    It says: “Joe, if they don’t want you, we do”

    Manchin has yet to respond.

  11. Austin Cassidy Post author

    In some ways it could be a political lucky break for Democrats if he did flip. Not from the standpoint of getting anything done, but it would allow them to more credibly blame McConnell for everything in their ‘22 messaging.

  12. GOP Wave 2022

    I don’t think it would be much of a lucky break for them. Most voters tend to blame the party in power if things are not going well. Even if Republicans took back control of the Senate before the midterm due to Manchin switching before then, Democrats still control the White House and US house, and would get the lion’s share of the blame no matter no matter how much they try to pin the blame on Senate Republicans. In recent decades, the president’s party almost always loses the midterm. That’s true even when most people think things are going well, and even more true when they don’t. Opponents of whichever party holds the White House are just more likely to be motivated to turn out during a midterm. With margins as thin as they are, Democrats would face a real uphill climb even in good times to hold on to control of either house of congress next year.

    Secondly, most voters vote based on the races in the state or district they live in, not the abstract “generic ballot” . Although politics is increasingly nationalized, there are still plenty of voters who will vote to keep their Senator or Congressman, even if they abstractly support the other party having a majority. Minchin himself is the best example of this. Promises to solve real problems in average people’s everyday lives, and more importantly the extent to which the party in power delivered or failed to deliver on such promises, count for a lot more than finger pointing games like “give us control of the Senate back and we’ll finally do what we promised but failed to do last time, even though we controlled the White House, House and Senate for a year last year”.

    That is weak messaging, and easily outweighed. Functionally, for most voters, the party which holds the presidency is the party in power. They’ll be punished if they fail to deliver, period – both by losing swing voters and by failing to turn out their base.

    Additionally, Republicans have finally become serious about the redistricting process, and control it in more states than Democrats do. And, they’ve become much more serious about long standing and worsening Democrat vote fraud and election stealing. Federal courts are also less prejudiced against Republicans than they were in recent decades, especially the Supreme Court. They’ve become much better at addressing issues real people really care about. Next year will be a massive Republican tide, much bigger than 1994 or 2010 as they take back congress – regardless of whether Manchin switches parties before the election or not.

  13. GOP Wave 2022

    I should also mention that a lot more Democrats than Republicans are choosing to not run again, and the number of retirement announcements are growing faster and faster, with plenty of time left. These politicians are seeing the big GOP tsunami on the horizon and fleeing from it ahead of time. Incumbents have a big advantage absent other factors, so even if the Democrats started looking strong in the stretch – they won’t, for other reasons above – the wave of retirements tends to become a self-fulfilling prophecy. Chances of Democrats hanging on to either house of Congress next year’s are fast moving from slim to none, if not there already.

  14. SocraticGadfly

    Who’s the nameless fascist mistitling the name of Biden’s very capitalist bill?

    Yet another Paulie incarnation?

  15. SocraticGadfly

    GOP Wave? Thune is reportedly considering retirement so as not to have to fight Trumpism. Now, given the wingnuttery of S. Dakota, starting with the gov, I could probably run Bill Janklow’s dead body and get it elected. But, eventually, the payback will happen.

    Eventually, the SD that established the Bank of South Dakota will return.

  16. GOP Wave 2022

    Socratic Gadfly, you fall far short of your self-declared Socratic status. Gadfly, maybe, but you really shouldn’t insult the Socratic method with such transparent lame arguments. If you have anything approaching an actual counterargument or question, please by all means go ahead. The closest thing you have so far is that some Republicans are also not seeking another term. That was already stipulated, but the Democrats are retiring in bigger numbers by far. Care to dispute that, or anything else?

    For that matter, look at which Republicans are retiring and where. Your example is a good one. A rhino who is “fighting Trumpism” is retiring in a heavily Republican state. Who do you think will replace him? Regardless of your speculation about what will happen in South Dakota in some unknown decade or century to come – we may or may not live long enough to find out – there is little rational doubt that a Republican will carry that race next year. Cleaning the Republican party of never Trumpers and rhinos is a good thing, and will only make the GOP WAVE more solid and strong next year.

    The only other thing you have thus far is name calling, hypocrisy, and ad hominem. Nameless – I’m pseudonymous, like you. I don’t care who you are. I care whether you have any reason that can stand up to believe my prediction is wrong .

    Fascist ? Please define fascism?. How is opposing a massive, literally unprecedented expansion of the size, scope, cost, debt, red tape and invasiveness of government “fascist”? And what about the bill is “very much capitalist” – that it does not immediately establish a “dictatorship of the proletariat ” or nationalize all means of production? Obviously, that would not pass. Even this bill proved to be too much of a leap in that direction, thankfully. Exactly which parts of the bill were not moves in that direction, though? If anything was fascist, it was this bill , not my comments. My characterization of it is a minor side issue. Call it whatever you want – “Bernie Beats Biden Act” or vice versa, it doesn’t matter. Call it by its official propaganda name. Does not matter. Fact remains true: if there was a large constituency for Manchin and his views in Democrat presidential primaries, that bill wouldn’t have passed the House or had the support of all but one or two Democrats in the Senate.

    So, are those really the best arguments you have for why you think I’m wrong about a GOP WAVE IN 2022 or that Manchin has no opening in Democrat presidential primaries in 2024? If you have a better argument, or better questions – give_it another try and do better. Or just admit my prediction is the odds on favorite to come true whether you like it or not.

  17. Nathan Norman

    “Yet another Paulie incarnation?”

    Obviously, but he does make some good points. And I lol’d at the “Build Back Bolshevism” line. I call it “Build Back Bullshit.”

  18. GOP Wave 2022

    I don’t know or care who that is or who any of you are. Thanks for agreeing that I made some good points, but which ones were good, and which ones were not so good, and why or why not? Does anyone here discuss reasons for why they believe whatever it is that they believe? I thought third parties and independents were supposed to be crucibles of ideas which then work their ways into the mainstream. If they are, instead, in essence middle school social clubs, perhaps that has something to do with why they continuously spin their wheels and get pretty much nowhere. Thank goodness that outsiders and former independents are now taking the wheel of the Republican Party. I thought there were still interesting conversations to be had with outside the box thinkers from third parties, but maybe there’s nothing but dead end dregs left in those?

    “Build Back Bullshit” is content free. There’s plenty of bullshit all around whenever congress is in session. That’s pretty much a give that comes with the territory. No one should be any more surprised to find lots of bullshit in an omnibus piece of congressional legislature than in a cow pasture. What set the BBB plan apart was its unprecedented level of social engineering, control, spending, debt, new and renewed entitlements, mandates, red tape – not that any of those are new, it just sought to level them up like never before. Call it Bolshevism or Fascism or whatever you want – yes, it is bullshit, but a particular kind of bullshit – the kind that believes that central planners can centrally plan a better world by centrally planning everything and backing up their shiny five and ten year plans with lots of threats of overwhelming force and punishment for anyone found not complying completely. It may not be as dramatic as a death camp, but it would have been a significant new piece of the rail line to one under construction. Call it Build Bigger Boots, or Boundless Bureaucratic Busybodies or Bennies By Biden – whatever you call it, it was nanny state expansionism on steroids. Good riddance.

    It was only mentioned to begin with to illustrate the point that there’s no significant constituency for Mr. Manchin or his ideas in Democrat presidential primaries, contra Mr. Cassidy. If anyone would like to argue that there is, what are your reasons for believing thusly?

  19. GOP Wave 2022

    “He has no use for Trump and Trump would have only one use for him, as a prop. ”

    His use for Trump: 1) On a personal level – potentially: Get him a heartbeat away from the presidency, possibly next in line, with a big national platform for whatever he wants to push. 2) On a larger level – keep more, bigger, “better” Build Billions of Boxcars bills and the thinking which underlies them from turning America into Built Bigger Beijing.

    Trump’s use for him: show any relatively reasonable people who are left on the Democrat side that it’s time to switch before we become the next province of Greater China, and make it that much harder for Biden and Beijing to steal another election.

    Imagine Republican speaker of the House Trump and Republican Senate Majority Leader Manchin impeaching and removing the pretender in chief and vice pretender in early 2023? They could even be the INCUMBENT Republican Presidential ticket in 2024. Far fetched? Maybe, but maybe not as far fetched as you may think.

  20. Austin Cassidy Post author

    My sense is that there is a 10-20% chunk of the Democratic electorate that would turn out for Manchin in a primary… his showings would vary from state to state, probably with most of his strength in rural counties and the South, but also the West.

    In 2016 Martin O’Malley polled double-digits in a swath of rural North Florida counties, despite the fact that he had dropped out of the race after Iowa and hadn’t campaigned for months. This was strictly a matter of being the third name on the ballot against Sanders and Clinton in those places, where many older white voters are still registered Democrats, even though they often vote Republican in general elections.

    In West Virginia, that same year, a largely unknown attorney ran a single-state campaign for president and won 9% against Sanders and Clinton.

    In 2008, despite having basically had his campaign crushed in South Carolina, John Edwards won 14% statewide in Florida and carried a whole chunk of those same North Florida counties against Clinton and Obama. Edwards won a handful of delegates because, in some of those counties, he won with 30-49% of the vote.

    A week after Edwards ended his campaign he won over 10% of the vote in Oklahoma and more than 20% in a number of more rural areas.

    In my scenario, I could see Manchin finding somewhat of an audience in New Hampshire with Democrats and independents and then picking and choosing favorable states with pockets of centrist and conservative Democrats from there.

    Several lesser known candidates polled pretty well against President Obama in 2012, two of them winning more than 40% against a sitting president… in Arkansas and West Virginia. Also 42% of Kentucky Democrats voted for an uncommitted slate against Obama that year. Those three states are places where Manchin would probably do well, perhaps even win all 3 contests.

    Again, I don’t think there’s a path to winning the nomination… but there is a path to winning a few hundred delegates, participating in all of the televised debates and making a statement at the convention. It’s easier than running third party or independent because the ballot access is less onerous, and it doesn’t require burning all of his bridges within the Democratic Party.

    Edit: Just to note, the reason I mention Edwards winning those North Florida counties specifically is because he won delegates at the Congressional District level, even though his 14% statewide was just short of what would have been needed to win a cut of the statewide delegate haul.

    Manchin’s support would be concentrated into Congressional districts that lean Republican, rural, mountainous, farming, etc. That’s an asset for him, because even if he only gets 8% of the vote in a hypothetical New York primary, there’s a very real chance he hits 15% in half of the state’s CDs.

  21. Austin Cassidy Post author

    “Imagine Republican speaker of the House Trump and Republican Senate Majority Leader Manchin impeaching and removing the pretender in chief and vice pretender in early 2023?”

    Totally far-fetched, fantastical and silly Donald Trump fan fiction. You sound like you’ve been smoking some of that same weed that Wayne Allen Root must’ve gotten his hands on. lol

  22. GOP Wave 2022

    Finally, at least, an argument. Maybe Manchin could have found that many delegates in Democrat primaries, but that was before Trump. Trump accelerated the already long underway march of conservative and moderate Democrats out of the increasingly bizarre “woke” rainbow circus which has come to dominate the Democrat Party. Those types of Democrats were already dying off or switching to Republican well before Trump, and Trump spoke their language like no Republican ever before (Reagan came closest, and brought many Reagan Democrats into the Republican Party, but Trump is far and away better).

    As much as Trump did to make them Republicans, the increasingly unhinged leadership of the Democrats has done at least as much or more. They’re now the party of tranny tyranny, burn loot murder, lockdowns, coerced vaccinations and face diaper muzzles, out of control inflation, cancel culture, defunding police, closed businesses, open sewer borders, bowing to China, and lots of other things, none of them good from the standpoint of older White voters in rural areas who were previously legacy Democrats out of habit. Increasingly, even black men and Hispanics are starting to go Republican in bigger numbers. Biden and Harris are historically unpopular and sinking like a rock. These trends will only accelerate by 2024.

  23. GOP Wave 2022

    “Totally far-fetched, fantastical and silly Donald Trump fan fiction. ”

    That’s what a lot of supposed experts said about the chances of a President Trump to begin with.

    I’ve laid out the case for a big Republican majority taking both houses of Congress in 2022. So far, no one has made a counterargument, or even tried. Obviously, the new majorities will be much more aligned with Trump than currently, after more remaining Never Trumpers and Rhinos retire or get defeated in primaries. That majority will want to avenge the ridiculous, failed attempts to remove President Trump, and Democrats have already given plenty of cause for the removal of Biden and Harris, starting with the sham of an election that installed them in the first place, but by no means ending there. In another year, there will be many additional reasons to impeach and remove the incompetent pretender puppets.

    What better revenge to Pelosi than making Trump the new Speaker? It’s completely legal, and has already been proposed by one or more sitting members of congress. Trump has about had it with McConnell, and vice versa. Making Manchin the new majority leader would be a great incentive to switch parties. Unlike the Trump impeachments, the coming Biden and Harris impeachments or resignations would have plenty of real substance, which would come out during their trials – including indisputable proof that they colluded with China to steal the 2020 election and install a Beijing puppet regime. Removal or resignation seems likely. Trump would be next in line for the Presidency at that point by virtue of his office as Speaker. He could then choose Manchin to be his VP, to help unify the country and ensure the most massive landslide victory in many decades in 2024. Trump and Manchin could thus Save America and Make America Even Greater Than Ever. The Democrats would be left on the ash heap of history along with the USSR and the Iron Curtain, where they belong.

  24. Robert Milnes

    Instead of discussing Manchin and Trump, we should be discussing voting out ALL the reactionary trash.
    I remember when I first got involved in the libertarian nomination, we were asked what is your strategy to win. It was kind of a joke. Everybody knew we had no strategy to win, no chance.
    So I tried to develop one. Starting with Tom Knapp, we discussed it. He kept saying too many obstacles. He kept talking about LP bylaws. Eventually he bailed.
    But I went on. To this.

  25. .

    Fan fiction? The same know it all’s thought it was fan fiction to think TRUMP could actually become President, if you told them that in December 2013, the same point in that cycle as we are in ours. Well guess what.

    Reactionary? Against what? Progressive? Towards WHAT ? The unspoken assumption behind these terms is the Marxist theory of inevitable historic progression towards a Marxist revolution that would supposedly lead to an anarchist worker’s utopia. In the real world it led to gulags and mass starvation. When you parrot these terms, you either reveal yourself to be a Marxist, or an ignorant tool unknowingly helping to spread their demented theories. Which is it?

  26. GOP Wave 2022

    Picture this. It’s early 2023 and Beijing Joe Biden tries to deliver the State of the Union to a congress massively dominated by the GOP, including many rowdy freshmen . Above and behind him stand a smiling Trump and a stern Manchin. Dementia Joe gets flushed and flustered and has trouble reading the teleprompter. Loud booing errupts as he has more and more trouble delivering his lines. Then he stops altogether. Is he having an aneurysm? Stroke? Heart attack? Dementia Joe is helped off the stage and quickly whisked away. Krazy Kamala steps in and tries to deliver the lies, but soon she too is melting like the wicked witch of the west. Before long she too has to be whisked away.

    With a big smile on his face, Trump rips up their speech like Putrid Pelosi did his. Then he descends into the Presidential spot that was stolen from him by the Democrat traitors who sold us out to China. There is a solid half hour of nonstop applause before he even begins to speak. This isn’t teleprompter Trump. He speaks the real truth from the heart, and a grateful nation is rescued at long last from the evil clutches of the communist yellow peril and its domestic fifth column. Free at last, free at last! Thank the Lord! America is back!

  27. Robert Milnes

    Looks like BAN garbage and gaslight commenters have come here to IPR.
    Austin, do not let them trash IPR like they trashed BAN.
    I am not a Marxist dupe.
    Biden, Kamala and Trump are just as reactionary.
    I, for one, am sick of it.
    I thought all of us here at IPR were also.

  28. .

    Then explain what you mean by your terminology.

    What is the action that reactionaries are reacting to?

    What are progressives progressing towards ?

  29. Sammy H

    GOP Wave likes to take a fistful of viagra and touch his pee-pee while he dreams about Donald Trump staging a military coup and being named Emperor for Life.

  30. GOP Wave 2022

    It’s common for disgusting sexual pervert cultural Marxists to project their sexual perversions onto healthy, patriotic conservatives. The path I outlined is completely legal, constitutional, ethical, righteous, and justified. I.even mentioned Manchin succeeding Trump as President in 2028. The real military coup was the Chicom Intel operation that hijacked and Shanghaied our 2020 presidential election under cover of Chinese biowarfare , installing the Beijing puppet pretender Biden and Kooky Kamala. It was a case of the evil empire striking back, but our rebel hero, Donald Trump, will return, like the Jedi, and destroy the Chinese death star before it destroys us.

  31. Nathan Norman

    I don’t think it’s that bad. Even if I don’t agree, Austin makes his argument and provides ample evidence to support it. I’ve read much worse articles on this site.

  32. .

    I agree. Austin marshalls his arguments with logic based on past election results and statistical evidence. Unfortunately, too many commenters have been able to come up with nothing better than a bevy of textbook logical errors, childish name calling, innuendo, psychological projection – in short, every distraction in the book to try to deflect from their lack of an evidence based counterargument. But that is hardly Austin’s fault.

  33. GOP Wave 2022

    It speaks to the pathetic level of maturity on the loony left. Don’t let it distract you from answering the questions you were asked about how you define your terms.

  34. Jared

    “Reactionary” is reserved for anti-establishment types on the far right. Biden and Harris are as neoliberal, welfare capitalist establishment as two politicians can get. Not being a hardline progressive democratic socialist isn’t enough to warrant the label.

    As Trump’s “ideology” consists of his own instincts and whims that happened accidentally to ignite a brewing paleoconservative populism, the closest thing Biden has to an ideology is whatever the Democratic Party platform is pushing at the time.

    As for Gadfly implying that Paulie is a fascist, I don’t know what he’s smoking. Paulie Frankel is a culturally left-wing market anarchist, about as far away from “fascist” as a person can land on the political spectrum. Again, taking an interest in politics without committing to socialism doesn’t translate to being a right-wing nutjob.

  35. Robert Milnes

    Over the years, I believe I have come to know and understand paulie pretty well.
    Yes he is a left libertarian, just like Tom Knapp.
    Big difference is he’s jewish. He, quite logically has homeland and survival intimately invested in Israel.
    Trump and the reactionaries/fascists zealously support Israel.
    So he looks good to me to simultaneously support Trump and sabotage the libertarians and me.
    Even at the expense of trashing Richard’s blog.
    And trashing this blog.
    So, yeah, paulie is a fascist by supporting Zionist Israel and Trump, at the expense of his true beliefs.

  36. Tony From Long Island

    Seriously, what happened to this site? These posts are looney tunes!

    Also, if Andy has a problem with me now being a democrat, why is he not equally upset with the absolute weirdo called “GOP Wave 2022?”

    This crap is crazy town. The blocks end and the weirdness begins. Sad . . . Disappointing.

  37. Andy

    “Tony From Long Island
    December 22, 2021 at 23:56
    Seriously, what happened to this site? These posts are looney tunes!

    Also, if Andy has a problem with me now being a democrat, why is he not equally upset with the absolute weirdo called ‘GOP Wave 2022?'”

    This poster known as “GOP Wave 2022” just showed up here for the first time, unless of course they have posted here before under different fake names.

    This person has just popped up here for the first time. Let’s see if they linger around for years like you have.

    I could see a major party devotee popping up here for a short time, but then finding out that this site only caters to minor parties and independent candidates, and then leaving, but I don’t see why they would linger her for years like you have.

    When is the last time you voted for somebody other than a Democrat?

  38. .


    Reactionary as it’s generally used in political discourse today, along with progressive, derive from Marxist theory of social progress. Marx and his deranged followers over the past 150 years or so have pushed a crackpot “science” of socialism which contends that we are progressing towards a global worker’s revolution where property owners will be dispossessed and anarcho-socialist collectives of farmers and industrial laborers will create a secular heaven on earth. In complete reversal of the scientific method, the “scientists of socialism” in performing their massive scale human experiments continuously fit the facts to their theory rather than the other way around.

    In a complete reversal of their predictions, attempts to implement their crackpot beliefs have resulted in the complete opposite of what they promised: totalitarianism far worse than any tyrants in human history heretofore in the pervasiveness of their tyranny and the scale of their murderousness and enslavement of more people under worse conditions than slaves in any past society. Contrary to their promises, the totalitarianism was not temporary, and no anarchist utopia ever resulted. What resulted instead were gulags, mass starvation, killing fields, and human misery like nothing the world has seen before, which is saying a lot. In the face of all this real world data, the mad “science” of socialism hasn’t discarded its core theory, instead insisting that the experiments be run over and over with a few tweaks here and there until they produce their predictions, which they never do, regardless of the human cost. Instead of heaven on earth, they produced the closest thing to hell on earth in the entire history of human misery and oppression by despots of every sort.

    In countries where they have not, at least yet, been able to completely take over all of government and society through bloody revolution, these enemies of humanity have burrowed in like termites, disguising themselves as liberals, progressives, and neocons. They have been particularly pervasive on academia, education at all levels, publishing, entertainment of all sorts, journalism – in short, in molding public ideas and discourse. The theory that they operate under is that they are progressing towards their global “utopia” step by inevitable step, incrementally – “progressive” implementing of communism either instead of a bloody revolution or as a form of softening the ground to prepare for it. Those of us who stand in the way of their “progress” are “reactionary.”

    I suspect you already know all this, but I spelled it out so we have some context for what “progressive” and “reactionary” actually mean. People use these words all the time without considering what exactly progressives are progressing towards or what reactionaries or counterrevolutionaries are standing in the way of. I’ve asked Robert Milnes and anyone else here who uses these terms unironically to provide any alternative explanations of what they mean when they say progressive, progress, revolutionary, counterrevolutionary, reactionary and related terms. So far, you may notice that they have not even attempted to provide any other explanation, instead just ignoring the question and pretending it doesn’t exist.

    Thus, unless and until Mr. Milnes or one of his fellow “progressives” provides an alternative explanation, I stand by my statement. Progressive refers to step by step progress towards gulags and killing fields. Reactionary refers to fighting back against this termite infestation relentlessly attacking the foundations of our civilization. Those who consider themselves to be progressives or revolutionary and those who stand in their way to be reactionary or counterevolutionary are actually pushing crackpot Marxist junk “science” views of human progress.

    Some of them are well aware that this is what they are pushing, but generally not honest in admitting to it when asked. Some just continue to parrot these same concepts without bothering to consider what exactly it is that they are progressing towards, what reactionaries are reacting against, or what sort of revolution exactly they advocate when they deride counterevolutionaries. They engage in all sorts of evasive tactics and never, under any circumstances, directly engage the question. In some cases this is because they are dishonest, and in some it’s because they are actively avoiding thinking about it, because coming to the realisation that they have allowed themselves to be used as tools by Marxist termites causes cognitive dissonance.

    Mr. Milnes denies that he is being a Marxist dupe when he pushes these terms and ideas. The other explanation I provided is that he is well aware that this is exactly what these terms refer to, and just doesn’t want to be honest enough to admit it. In that case he would just be a Marxist, not a dupe. He has denied being a Marxist dupe, but he has neither admitted nor denied being a Marxist.

    Thus, three options remain. One is that he is a Marxist termite. In that case, it will be interesting to see whether and when he will admit it. Another is that he genuinely doesn’t realize that he is being a Marxist dupe, but of course it’s in the nature of being a dupe to not realize that you’ve allowed your mind to be taken over by parasites and have acted as a vessel to further their termite attack on the foundations of civilization, prosperity, and freedom. It’s not surprising that there are all sorts of defensive tactics that get thrown up to avoid coming to such realizations. The last explanation is that they intend some other unspecified type of revolution than global Marxist revolution when they praise revolutionaries and condemn counterevolutionaries, and that they want to progress towards something other than a Marxist “utopia” when they call themselves progressives and those of us who oppose them reactionary. In that case, let’s have them spell out what exactly they are progressing towards and what sort of revolution exactly they want.

    I’m predicting that these questions will not get answered straightforwardly, regardless of how many times or ways they are posed. Marxist termites prefer to be seen as benevolent liberals and progressives and avoid having to answer for gulags and killing fields. Dupes don’t want to come to the realisation that they have been duped. And as far as I know, no other explanation of what it is that they actually mean when they use such terms exists. I’m open to the possibility that it does, but I won’t accept that it does unless they provide such an explanation and spell it out. Otherwise the only explanation I know of is that they are pushing Marxist claptrap, either consciously or without realizing it, that is, as dupes, pawns, tools, or whatever term you prefer.

    Will we see an admission of Marxist termitehood? Most likely no, but let’s see if we do. A eureka moment, when a dupe realizes he was duped? Also unlikely, because the conscious mind naturally fights back against such realizations. How about that alternative explanation? Well, it should tell you something that there has not been even the least attempt made to provide one. There probably won’t be, but let’s see if there is. What we are more likely to see is more of what we saw above: all sorts of defensive mechanisms deployed to avoid dealing with these questions and sweep them under the rug. Let’s see if I’m wrong. It’s entirely possible, but I don’t think I am. I’ve asked these questions to various people using these terms and have yet to see a straightforward answer that even began to make sense as opposed to some form of evasion, deflection, or defensive mechanism of some sort. Will we get anything different this time?

  39. Robert Milnes

    Let’s hope Austin does not allow commenters like GOP Wave 2022 to linger for years.
    Let’s have some names and IP addresses, if you please, Austin.
    Clearly the trolls have moved here from BAN.
    There was a LOT worse than “pee-pee” used.
    And you, yourself. Austin, opened the door in this thread to the connection of Manchin and Trump to possible Independents. Who are considered eligible for writing about here at IPR.
    Unfortunately, so are fascists.
    My definition of reactionaries does not include fascists. -Status quo centrists.
    And that actually, as a third party, would also be eligible for IPR.
    Reform, Alliance, Unity parties and candidates e.g.
    So IPR basically only discourages the Democratic and Republican parties and candidates for coverage. Again unless some third party/Independent connection can be shown. IMO.

  40. .

    Jared, your so called neoliberal welfare capitalists are actually Fabian socialist authoritarians “progressively” implementing Marxist revolution on the installment plan – what’s known as boiling the frog slowly. They favor a mixed economy with nominal private ownership but heavy government involvement and control throughout every aspect of society and property and civic organization of any sort, with the mix shifting constantly towards command and control and away from individual liberty and property, usually by slow steady steps, but by bigger leaps whenever an opportunity presents itself or can be engineered. Because all of their social engineering and bureaucratic meddling inevitably make things worse rather than better, and the answer is always even more bureaucratic meddling and social engineering,.there’s nowhere else for them to “progress ” to except a global totalitarian communist hell on earth.

    They’re smart enough to know this, and also smart enough to know that the only way they can get there is by spoon feeding it a little at a time. They’ve already tried it the other way,.and that didn’t work. But in true mad scientist fashion, they have by no means given up. They persist in working on all sorts of ways to implement complete totalitarian control of everything, and anything that impedes this “progress” is just a bump on the road for them – “reactionary, ” counter – revolutionary , etc .

    China still has the bloody red flag of communism proudly flying as its standard. Their ruling gang is still called the Chinese Communist Party. The global order that Biden, Harris,.and the rest of their so called welfare capitalist neoliberals and neoconservatives seek is the exact same one the Chinese Communists seek. They’ve just adopted different ways of marketing it in different countries and different roadmaps – which all lead to the same exact place, and it’s not a pretty one. Not only do they have the same goals in common, but they are actively working together to implement them. That is why Communist China bioengineered their biovirus and computer viral attacks which last year culminated in them stealing our presidential election and installing Biden and Harris as their traitorous puppets.

    And before that, they and their deep state moles spent 4 years trying to false flag Russia for supposedly subverting the 2016 election for Trump in a lame attempt to discredit his amazing and nearly miraculous triumph over their deeply embedded establishment, a true victory for freedom and the American people they did not expect. When that hoax fell apart, they tried to make something out of nothing about Ukraine. When that didn’t work either, the economy was amazing, and Trump was stronger than ever and they saw no other way to stop him, they got together with the CCP, Wuhan Institute of Virology, Dominion Voting, Fauci, Joe and Hunter Biden, Chinese computer hackers, and the Democrat urban vote fraud machines to step up their vote stealing under cover of their planned biowarfare plandemic to put in their puppets, Biden and Harris.

    Now, they are painting attempts to stop their coup as the actual coup attempt. Their goal is show trials to discredit patriots and to try to prevent Trump from beating them yet again by disqualifying him from becoming Speaker of the House and trying to make him ineligible to run for President again. They will fail yet again, but they don’t know it yet. Trump is the chosen one. God is on his side, and he will defeat the forces of evil, first at home and then abroad, and foil all their evil plans. The real coup plotters will all be locked up and punished, much as they are trying to lock up and punish patriots who tried to thwart their coup now. We will finally defeat China, communism, socialism, and every other name that their evil godless doctrine goes by. The world will have freedom and prosperity like never before, and Capitalism, Nationalism and Christianity will triumph. A global order based on God and Country, national sovereignty and Capitalism will emerge triumphant. So let it be written, so let it be done.

  41. .

    Jared is also incorrect about Trump having no ideology or accidentally stumbling on paleoconservative populism. Trump ran for the Reform Party nomination in 2000, and shared many of the same economic views and aversion to globalism as others in the Reform Party then, including Pat Buchanan and Ross Perot. Those same views have manifested themselves over the years since through the Ron Paul movement, the Tea Party, and finally Trump himself. Trump has also held consistently over the years to his views about the paramount importance of law and order and the foolishness of coddling criminals .

    Pat Buchanan is a great writer who has the right ideas, but his Reform Party campaign proved to be a total flop. At the time, Trump had not yet seen the wisdom of Buchanan’s views on some social and cultural issues, or the crucial importance of stopping and reversing the flood of criminal third world immigrants into our country and other Western nations. Thankfully, Trump has become older and wiser in the years since, and evolved on those issues. In Republican primaries, the path was blazed for him by Buchanan and Paul. As a maverick businessman candidate, he was preceded by Perot. Those movements, and Reaganism and then the Tea Party, and the George Wallace movement before that, all paved the way for Trump today. It was not an accident or stumbling, but a righteous path made and ordained by God to Save America.

  42. GOP Wave 2022


    Contrary to what Marxists and their insidious propaganda have led most people to believe, fascism and national socialism are actually left wing. Mussolini was a socialist who then developed fascism from socialism with a few tweaks here and there. Hitler didn’t include the word socialist in national socialist by accident. In everything from their uniforms and armbands to their street fighting tactics to who they recruited to the propaganda and police state measures they employed once in power, national socialists and fascists closely resembled communists and socialists. Economically, fascists and national socialists didn’t go quite as far as the communists, but they too injected a heavy dose of economic command and control. They killed a lot of people and confiscated a lot of property, but the communists killed and stole even more.

    The only reason we have been led to believe that Nazis and fascists were worse than communists, or their polar opposite ideology, is thanks to the pervasiveness of communist propaganda. In reality, they are both properly seen as being on the left, with communism being the furthest left, and fascism not far away from them on the far left. The further left, more they nationalise everything, the more completely they enslave their countries, and the more people they end up killing, both at home and abroad. They both also engage in military invasion and occupation of surrounding countries.

    Communism, fascism and national socialism are all left wing. Communism is the furthest left, and not coincidentally the most murderous. Our own leftists today are closer to both fascists and communists than is anyone on the right. They are similar in pushing economic command and control, social thought control through political correctness and cancel culture, big lie propaganda tactics, cultural Marxism, and globalism. Fascists and Nazis are not conservatives or reactionaries, extreme or otherwise. They don’t seek to preserve or restore tradition. Like communists, they seek to radically and rapidly transform the nation’s they take over using a lot of government force every step of the way, and then invade and occupy one country after another. Not quite as radically and rapidly as communists, but they still seek to sweep out everything that’s traditional and insert the government into everything.

  43. GOP Wave 2022

    I forgot to add that we’ve also been led to believe that fascism is more totalitarian, kills more people, etc, thanks to communist propaganda. They are both totalitarian and kill a lot of people, but communism is even worse than fascists in both respects.

  44. GOP Wave 2022

    Andy and Tony,

    I have not always been a Republican either. I’ve supported some Republicans, such as Goldwater, Reagan, and Trump. I supported Ron Paul and Pat Buchanan both when they ran in Republican primaries and when they ran as third party candidates, and Ross Perot both times he ran, as well as George Wallace back in the day. I voted for Bob Barr when he ran as a third party candidate, and Virgil Goode when he did as well. Had Trump not won the nomination, I would have voted for Castle. I had no use for the GOP when it was controlled by the Romney’s, Bushes, and McCain’s.

    When there was talk of the Rhinos taking back the GOP earlier this year, I was ready to get the Patriot Party up and running with other Trump supporters. If they should somehow surprise me and take back the GOP in the future, I’ll go third party again. I want that door to stay open for when and if we need it in the future, and I see value in talking to third party supporters and discussing a range of different idea perspectives even though I’m a Republican right now and hope they won’t lose my support yet again.

    I’m glad Tony has remained engaged with third party supporters even though he is not one currently . Maybe he will be again in the future, maybe not. Either way, I see value in reading and discussing a wide range of views and perspectives, including those outside the mainstream.

    Yes, I do look forward to the GOP WAVE in 2022 and 2024. But I’m not interested in talking just to people who think a lot like me. If Tony sees no value in anything I believe or my desire to understand why other people believe what they do, and Andy wants to slam the door on Tony because he’s currently a Democrat, or Tony wants to cancel Andy because he’s not politically correct on issues of preserving national sovereignty and Western Civilization or examining government conspiracies, you are both being too narrow minded and making a mistake .

    Do you see this as just a place to mentally masturbate by cranking out your views , perhaps in the hopes of winning converts, and not as a place where you may learn something yourself and maybe change your mind, whether to a large or small extent, by sincerely considering a variety of views, including some that are a lot different from yours? If so ,you are not doing yourself any favors. You’re also decreasing your chances of persuading anyone else if you’re not open to the possibility of being persuaded by them as well.

  45. Andy

    “GOP Wave 2022
    December 23, 2021 at 07:41
    Andy and Tony,

    I have not always been a Republican either. I’ve supported some Republicans, such as Goldwater, Reagan, and Trump. I supported Ron Paul and Pat Buchanan both when they ran in Republican primaries and when they ran as third party candidates, and Ross Perot both times he ran, as well as George Wallace back in the day. I voted for Bob Barr when he ran as a third party candidate, and Virgil Goode when he did as well. Had Trump not won the nomination, I would have voted for Castle. I had no use for the GOP when it was controlled by the Romney’s, Bushes, and McCain’s.”

    You sound like one of the trolls who has been posting on Ballot Access News over the last several months under different fake names.

  46. Andy

    ““GOP Wave 2022
    December 23, 2021 at 07:41
    Andy and Tony,

    I have not always been a Republican either. I’ve supported some Republicans, such as Goldwater, ”

    This guy must be pretty old if he was supporting Barry Goldwater. Probably a troll though. It would not surprise me if this troll was not even alive when Barry Goldwater was running for office.

  47. Andy

    “Sammy H
    December 23, 2021 at 04:34
    You are traumatized by the word peepee?”

    This is the only Sammy H. I can think of.

    Great to see you still touring after all these years.

    Sammy Hagar – There’s One Way To Rock, I’ll Fall In Love Again – The Strat Las Vegas – 11-12-2021

  48. .


    I don’t know who I sound like to you, or why, and I don’t care. I don’t care if you think I’m old either, but yes, I’m old enough to have supported Barry Goldwater in 1964. I’m younger than William Shatner though, and he just went up into space. What does it matter to you how old I am? Try a dating website if you’re interested in the age, sex, location, or other personal details of those you’re talking to. Or get off your computer and go to church, because you probably need Jesus more than you know, or join a gym, or go somewhere where you can interact with people face to face. I’m here to discuss ideas. I only gave some examples of who I supported in the past to address the question of why a current supporter of one of the two major parties is interested in participating in a third party discussion at all. The point, in case it went over your head, is that I’ve supported the GOP when they put forward good candidates, and third parties when they didn’t. Otherwise, I’m not here to talk about me. I’m also not here to talk about you or gossip about your friends or trade insults. If I’m in the wrong place to discuss the merits of your ideas with third party supporters, what’s a better one? Or, is it that none of you have any ideas worth discussing, and no logical arguments about the merits or lack thereof of anyone else’s?

  49. .

    Also, Andy, what is your definition of troll? If you think I don’t actually believe what I do, you’re wrong, but it doesn’t matter. Those ideas still either have merit, or not. If the best argument you can make against them is that you think I’m someone else who said something somewhere, or that you don’t think I believe them for whatever reason you think that, then it doesn’t speak well of you or your ability to formulate an argument, or however it is that you arrive and justify whatever it is that you do believe.

  50. .

    “My definition of reactionaries does not include fascists. -Status quo centrists.”

    What is your definition of reactionary, or fascist for that matter? Are you able to define any of the terms you use? So far, you’ve been unable or unwilling to explain what, as a progressive, you are progressing towards, or what reactionaries are reacting against, in your opinion. These are very basic questions that you should be able to answer easily, yet you haven’t. Are you trying to say that I am a “status quo centrist” because I support Republicans when they have good candidates, even though I don’t when they have bad ones? Is anyone that does not forswear ever supporting Republicans or Democrats regardless of who the candidate is a “status quo centrist,” and therefore a “reactionary,” according to your definition, whatever that is? Speaking of which, what is it? That might be a good place to start.

  51. Andy

    December 23, 2021 at 13:51
    Also, Andy, what is your definition of troll? If you think I don’t actually believe what I do, you’re wrong, but it doesn’t matter. Those ideas still either have merit, or not. If the best argument you can make against them is that you think I’m someone else who said something somewhere, or that you don’t think I believe them for whatever reason you think that, then it doesn’t speak well of you or your ability to formulate an argument, or however it is that you arrive and justify whatever it is that you do believe.”

    So says the person posting as “.”.

  52. .

    Exactly. It’s equally true or false regardless of who said it. If you think otherwise, please explain why you think whether the truth or falsehood of that statement depends on who said it. But aside from an obvious tautology, what do you have? Much like Mr. Milnes, you can’t seem to be able to answer the most simple possible question regarding your beliefs. Is that true of everyone here?

    Back when I was more involved with third parties, one of the positive aspects was that there were a lot of intelligent people involved who could hold interesting conversations, even if what counted as actual political success was elusive. Have all intelligent people capable of having interesting conversations moved on from third parties, leaving the kind of intellectual barren moonscape I’m encountering here, or is there some other place to find better ones these days? Where would you look, if you were looking for an intellectual exchange with a variety of third party supporters of different beliefs? Do you know what questions are, and how to answer them, in general?

  53. Traditionalist

    As a follower of the original American Independent Party and movement, this only confirms the good feeling I have about Senator Manchin.

  54. Andy

    January 3, 2022 at 09:15
    As a follower of the original American Independent Party and movement, this only confirms the good feeling I have about Senator Manchin.”

    Aren’t you too old to be coming on here playing under fake different fake names? This is your 3rtd fake name in this thread. If you are in your late 70’s or 80’s or beyond, which is how old you’d have to be to remember when FDR was President, you sure do act childish.

  55. Traditionalist

    Well, as to who is acting childish here, we have a difference of opinion. I don’t consider my name to be any of your business whatsoever, and it’s not my obligation to explain why. Either what I’ve said makes logical sense, or it doesn’t. Either you have a logical reply to it, or you don’t. It’s that simple. Anything else is a distraction.

    My name, age, location, sex, looks, measurements, height. weight, home address, phone number, where I worked or went to university, who my friends are, and anything else about me is completely irrelevant to whether I’ve made an argument that made sense or not. I recognize that you think otherwise, and that we have a difference of opinion. That doesn’t mean you should throw an endless tantrum because I’m not ceding to your demands for irrelevant personal information which is simply none of your business.

    I’m more used to other internet fora where the top line can be used as a headline for the topic of the comment. That’s what I did with “GOP wave.” I didn’t intend for it to be my “name” because I don’t want to use any name whatsoever. I want to discuss ideas, not personalities or names. Who said something has zero relevance to whether it’s true. I’ve explained this quite a few times, and it will remain my position regardless of how much you kick, stomp your feet, yell, get red in the face, and otherwise can’t politely accept that someone has a different approach than you.

    “.” was simply like “x” or “withheld” or “none of your business ” or “n/a” or “leave it be, KGB” – any of those could be my “name” here, as far as I’m concerned. A@b was either me accidentally transposing the name and email fields, or the forum proprietor doing it for me. Luckily, it is not my actual email address, which is also absolutely none of anyone’s business here.

    Finally, subsequent to my prior comments here, the forum proprietor asked me to pick a screen name and stick to it. Much as I dislike weighing some of my comments with the weight of others I’ve made, which enables a form of proxy ad hominem, I’ve followed his rules in this regard, and picked traditionalist as a handle which summarizes my political philosophy. He made it clear that my screen name does not have to be my actual name here. Which is good, because my actual name is both completely besides the point and absolutely, unequivocally none of your business.

    It would be great if you could now stop these distractions and tantrums and discuss the substance of anything I said, which is the ostensible reason we’re here. At least, that’s why I’m here. Perhaps you’re here because this is what you do instead of having a social life in real life. I don’t know, don’t care, and won’t play along. I don’t care whether you like it, and my position won’t change.

    Notably, your reply addressed absolutely none of the substance of the comment you replied to. If you want to believe that I’m lying about my age, you can choose to believe that I’m a follower of the AIP after the fact from reading about it in history books. The fact that I was there in person is the least relevant part of anything I said.

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