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Posted: 5/29/2001 12:03:14 PM EDT
The question is: The GOP can keep blaming the Libertarians for losing elections or they can do something about it, BECAUSE THE LP IS NOT GOING AWAY. [url]www.lp.org/press/archive.php?function=view&record=203[/url] The Republican Party is to blame for losing control of the U.S Senate WASHINGTON, DC -- Republicans have no one to blame but themselves for losing control of the U.S. Senate, the Libertarian Party said today. "Vermont Senator James Jeffords' decision to become a Democratic-aligned independent didn't cause Republicans to lose control of the U.S. Senate -- the Republican Party caused Republicans to lose control," said LP National Director Steve Dasbach. "And, contrary to the prevailing wisdom, Republicans didn't lose the Senate because they were too conservative; they lost it because they weren't libertarian enough. That's what prompted voters in 1998 and 2000 to desert Republican candidates and vote for Lbertarians -- which cost the GOP at least two U.S. Senate seats." According to figures compiled by National Review, Libertarian Party candidates caused Senator Slade Gorton to lose his seat in Washington state in 2000 and John Ensign to lose his race in Nevada in 1998. In each case, the Libertarian Party candidate won considerably more votes than the losing GOP candidate's margin: Gorton lost by 2,229 votes, while Libertarian Jeff Jared won 64,734 votes; and Ensign lost by 428 votes, while Libertarian Michael Cloud won 8,044 votes. Those two races turned what would have been a 52-48 seat Republican majority into a 50-50 split in the U.S. Senate -- and set the dramatic stage for James Jeffords' switch and the creation of what is effectively a Democratic majority. That fact has been already noted by several publications: * "In the last two elections, Republicans have lost Senate seats by a margin much smaller than a Libertarian Party candidate received: a Nevada seat in 1998 and a Washington state seat in 2000. [T]hese libertarians have made Tom Daschle majority leader." (National Review Online, May 24, 2001) * "[Republican strategist Grover Norquist] said that if Republicans had sought to win over even a tiny percentage of the Libertarian Party vote in Nevada and Washington state, it would have a 52-48 Senate majority instead of a 50-50 split." (The Washington Times, May 21, 2001) * "[T]he most underappreciated political phenomenon of the last two election cycles: In both 1998 and 2000, a Republican candidate for the Senate lost to a Democrat by a margin far less than a Libertarian's vote total. Republicans would probably now enjoy a 52-48 majority if Libertarians hadn't run in these races." (Investor's Business Daily, May 9, 2001) But if Republicans start keeping their promises, they might start keeping their jobs, said Dasbach.
Link Posted: 5/29/2001 12:03:53 PM EDT
(continued) "Over the last six months, the Republican Party has seemed determined to out-Democrat the Democrats," he said. In fact, since George W. Bush was elected president and Republicans claimed control of the U.S. House and U.S. Senate, the GOP has supported: * An $18.6 billion spending boost (a 72% increase) for the federal Department of Education for elementary, secondary, and vocational education. * A new federal program -- that will cost $46 billion over five years -- to give low-cost prescription drugs to seniors. * A $282 million spending increase for Bill Clinton's AmeriCorps program. * And continued support for the Clinton administration's lawsuit against tobacco companies; for Al Gore's $2.3 billion-a-year tax on telephone bills; and for the Clinton administration's medical "privacy" rules, which give control of Americans' medical records to the government. That's why, if they are looking for someone to blame for losing the Senate, Republicans should just look in the mirror, said Dasbach. "As long as Republicans keep voting for bigger, more expensive, and more intrusive government, libertarian-leaning voters will keep deserting them for Libertarian Party candidates," he said. "And unless they start voting more like Libertarians, Republicans better start getting used to their minority status."
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