Election 2018 is ramping up already as candidates begin declaring their intention to run for office. The Libertarian Party is stacking up to make significant strides to make a difference in America.
Capitalizing on the massive uptick in votes during the 2016 Presidential Election as a result of Governors Gary Johnson and Bill Weld with an army of voluneers, the Libertarian Party has not rested. Its best and brightest have been laying in the groundwork for massive fundraising, campaigning, and professional training for candidates.
Some powerhouse candidates, some who have been setting records around the United States, are already planning their ground game, getting volunteers organized and initial donations started. Some of these names are well known in Libertarian circles, but with what is in the works, these names will likely become household names by the end of the campaign season.
Larry Sharpe, a former Vice Presidential candidate, has declared his intention to run for Governor of New York. Within the first few days from his announcement, while at Freedom Fest in Las Vegas, a donor promised to match dollar to dollar up to $10,000. This is huge for anyone running in the Libertarian Party, as many candidates know, because funds are normally slow, especially in the beginning of a campaign. This is not true with Larry Sharpe. We can already see that the New York Governor’s race will be one for the books. You can find out more about Larry Sharpe at his website www.LarrySharpe.com
Another candidate running in Utah, Craig Bowden, has declared his run for the U.S. Senate against one of the most unpopular Senators in Washington, D.C., Orrin Hatch. Mr. Bowden is currently reporting to have raise more than both previous campaigns he has run for federal office. When looking at his financial disclosures on FEC.gov, we were able to see he raised just under $5,000 in 2014, and must have not met the $5,000 threshold in 2016 as no reports were filed. Potentially this could mean that Craig Bowden has already raised in the tens of thousands. Craig notably broke Utah’s previous records for federal office, gaining over 16,000 votes in Utah’s 1st Congressional District, placing him in the top three third party candidates for the U.S. House of Representatives. You can find more about Craig Bowden at www.Bowden4Senate.com
Another interesting race is the one building up for the U.S. Senate in Missouri. Former Libertarian candidate for President in 2016, Austin Petersen, has jumped ship to the Republican Party seeking their nomination for office. The word is that Alicia Dearn, a dedicated advocate for ballot access will be challenging him in November. It may be remembered that Alicia Dearn was a likely pair up with Austin Petersen in the 2016 Presidential Race as his Vice Presidential Candidate. If the match up between the two happens for the General Election in 2018, liberty will be in high focus. Pledges for donations in Alicia Dearn’s campaign are looking good according to her CrowdPac page, nearing $2,000 from her announcing her exploratory committee. More individuals have pledged on her social media pages up to several hundred dollars from some individuals.
These three races are likely to be fairly high profile, but that isn’t all going on in the Libertarian Party. Announced in April 2017, the Libertarian Party has announced job openings for a Candidate Support Specialist to help the party gain 2,000 candidates on ballots across the United States, and be on hand to help train those candidates in best practices. Also announced was a job posting for a Media Relations Director to help get more Libertarians in the media.
We are also looking good for getting more higher profile races into televised debates. Mark Wicks, a former candidate for the at large U.S. House seat in Montana, while initially denied participation, was allowed to debate the Democrat and Republican candidates, coming out on top according to several news sources. Joe Buchman, running for Utah’s 3rd Congressional District’s special election to replace Congressman Jason Chaffetz, was also invited to a debate sponsored by American’s for Prosperity.
We are looking forward to an exciting campaign season for Libertarians. It looks like the year will not disappoint.