There are several races in 2018 that you are going to want to pay attention to. Why? Because 2018 is shaping up to be a big year. With a President who can’t seem to control his Twitter finger, and a House and Senate that can’t seem to get anything done, we may just see some flipping around seats, and possibly some third party and independent candidates entering the national capital.
Currently, there are four Senate seats that cannot be safely called. These include Indiana, Missouri, North Dakota, and Nevada. Typically, midterm elections favor the opposition party from the President. This means there may be a slight edge for three of the seats currently occupied by Democrats.
Of note in Utah, Senator Orrin Hatch is facing a state with 78% of the population not wanting him to run again, however, with more fiscal conservative leanings, electing a Democrat is unlikely. This leaves another option, however, as a Libertarian candidate is pushing forward as well. Craig Bowden, so far, is running uncontested for the Libertarian nomination. According to an inside source, he is looking to be the first Libertarian to be required to file FEC quarterly reports for fundraising. This puts the 32 year old, small business owner in a position to possibly give a lot of fight. Checking his Facebook and website, we can see he is already ahead of the curve in doing outreach events. There is definitely a plan in place on this race.
Another race to note is the race of Governor for New York. Larry Sharpe, a former Libertarian Vice Presidential candidate in 2016 who was in a tight race against former Governor Bill Weld in 2016 for the nomination, is making waves ahead of time as well. The first major wave was from a video he put out of his candidacy declaration in July. In the video he is only seeking the Libertarian nomination, which is interesting considering the availability of fusion campaigns in New York. When Mr. Sharpe went down to FreedomFest in Las Vegas, he was also able to raise a considerable amount of money for the race, which is something rare in Libertarian campaigns below that of the presidency.
The Libertarian Party is also pushing for 2,000 candidates to be on the ballot across the United States in 2018. This is nearly three times as many candidates as ran in the 2014 midterm elections. An inside source within the party has stated that they are especially targeting races at the local and state levels that typically only have one person running to give voters a choice in 2018.
Unfortunately, one race we were following was the Missouri race for U.S. Senate, had a strong candidate drop out of the race during her exploratory phase. Alicia Dearn chose to step aside for medical reasons, as she has an upcoming surgery that will preclude her from putting in the efforts, as she said, “the state deserves.”
In Scranton, Pennsylvania, the Libertarian Party candidate Gary St. Fluer has sent some shock-waves through the 2017 election. In a lawsuit he filed against the city of Scranton on behalf of the citizens, he came out with a win against the high taxation residents were facing.
Lastly, Utah is also showing its Libertarian credentials in the special election to replace Jason Chaffetz, who resigned earlier this year. The nominated candidate, Joe Buchman, has been scoring a lot of media attention not previously seen for third party candidates, included several interviews on the air and a stellar debate performance.