On Oct. 21, on The Liberty Block, Elliot Axelman published an article about the eroded property rights that we now (do not) have in America. In his concluding thoughts, Elliot stated that “We’ve been coerced into voting for Rs and Ds for over a century and things have only gotten worse.” I found this interesting and ironic. Ironic because I actually discovered Mr. Axelman’s article after I began contemplating whether to write this article. Interesting because it ends with a theme that almost exactly matches one which I have been dealing with for the last couple of days, as I sent Tweets (which have gone unanswered) to nationally syndicated talk host Sean Hannity while he was on the air.
Let me preface this by saying that, this is not a piece that will be specifically targeting Mr. Hannity. I have watched his show and listened to his talk show for almost 20 years now. I am not a daily listener, but I have watched and listened as time permits. I think overall, he has done a lot to push the cause of conservatism, and though he might not go as far as I would like to see at times, he has been a good watch dog and has done an admirable job of pursuing scandals as he has found them. So, no, I do not write to attack Hannity, but I am frankly nearing the end of my rope on a certain issue that he has mentioned a few times this last week. That issue is the un-electability of Libertarian candidates in this country.
We are obviously in a particularly heated election season and part of Mr. Hannity’s show involves a rundown of the key races as he sees them. Depending on the poll that one looks at, the Democrat candidate for US Senate in Indiana leads the Republican by anywhere from 1 to 6 points. The Libertarian candidate has up to 6%, again, depending on the poll. My point of contention with Mr. Hannity’s comments comes from the fact that on at least 2 occasions now on 2 different days, he has made the statement that it is the LIBERTARIAN candidate that is the reason for the Republican candidate being behind
His reasoning is flawed. The first reason it is flawed is that it assumes the fact that if the Libertarian candidate were not in the race, all of those voters would vote Republican. While it is true that current trends are that Libertarians side more with Republicans, there are many who would naturally vote Democrat or stay home or vote for a different candidate. Issues like marijuana legalization, police abuse of power, and a military being used as the world’s police force tend to be issues associated with the left. Many Libertarians are Libertarian because of these issues. So, those votes go to the Democrat.
So, for argument’s sake, let’s say the Libertarian provides a 2 for 1 split, Republican for Democrat. In this case, the 6% support the Libertarian currently has, would give the Republican an extra 4% support, to an extra 2% to the Democrat. If the Republican trails currently, by about 6% that means he still trails by 4% after the Libertarian vote is added back in.
The second, and I contend major, flaw in Mr. Hannity’s logic is that we only have two choices. We do not. It is precisely that sort of thinking that we only have two choices that has led to so much of the division that we have in our country today. What would our founders think if they knew we had such an entrenched two-party system?
In his farewell “address” in a letter to a Philadelphia newspaper, President Washington warned of the perils of the two-party system. He wrote “It serves always to distract the public councils and enfeeble the public administration. It agitates the community with ill-founded jealousies and false alarms, kindles the animosity of one part against another, foments occasionally riot and insurrection. It opens the door to foreign influence and corruption, which finds a facilitated access to the government itself through the channels of party passions. Thus, the policy and the will of one country is subjected to the policy and will of another.” His words were more prophetic than he knew.
Throughout the time that I’ve listened to his show, Hannity has often bragged about the fact that he ”is not a Republican” and is, in fact, a registered Conservative. This gives the illusion that he is not a typical Republican. I am not sure why he would do this. If only a Republican and Democrat should run for office, then why register with a 3rd party himself? It makes no sense. The failed mentality of two parties is only leading to destruction. By calling for the Libertarian to “drop out”, he only re-enforces the failings of the two-party system.
I am proposing a radical idea to Mr. Hannity. Sean, please call for the Republican to drop out and publicly support and ask all Republicans to join you in your support of the Libertarian candidate. This would have the same effect as if the Libertarian bowed out. (Do you think any Republicans would actually go Democrat in today’s climate?) With all of those numbers suddenly swinging to the Libertarian, now the Democrat would be trailing. How great would it be if Mr. Hannity helped to get a 3rd party candidate elected? How great would it be if he used his national platform to help break apart a system that only continues to hurt America? How great would it be if he quit pretending he was not a Republican in Conservative party clothing?
Remember 2012, Mr. Hannity? A third “party” known as the T.E.A. (Taxed Enough Already) Party sprang up almost rapidly in response to President Obama’s leftist policies. People became energized that there could be hope in the political process again. People want an alternative to the black and white that we have today. There is room for third and fourth parties. It is easy to say “I am 3rd party,” when the Republicans have a clear lead or majority.
The time for action has come. The time has come for Mr. Hannity to stop being a Republican in secret. It is time he fully embraces the fact that third parties should be allowed to run without being shamed into “bowing out”. The people of Indiana should be free to vote for any party without the fear of their vote “not counting”. Hoosiers have a right, as all Americans have the right, to vote for the candidate that offers freedom from the failed two party system. The Libertarian offers this opportunity to vote for freedom.