Libertarian Party elects new national committee

The Libertarian Party elected an almost entirely new national committee at its biannual national convention in St. Louis over the weekend. The were nearly 500 delegates credentialed for the convention.

Unlike the Democratic and Republican parties, Libertarians hold a national convention every two years. And also unlike the Democratic and Republican parties, Libertarians receive no taxpayer money to conduct any of their conventions. Delegates attend entirely at their own expense.

Mark Hinkle of California is the new chair of the Libertarian national committee. Mark Rutherford of Indiana is vice chair.

They are joined by Alicia Mattson of Tennessee as secretary and James Oaksun of Maine as treasurer. Mary Ruwart of Texas, Wayne Allyn Root of Nevada, Bill Redpath of Virginia, David Nolan of Arizona, and Kevin Knedler of Ohio were elected members at-large. Ruwart is the only person reelected to the committee.

Nolan was a co-founder of the Libertarian Party. The party’s first meeting was held in his living room in 1972. Root was the party’s 2008 vice presidential candidate. Redpath is the former chair.

“I’m glad to see Mark Hinkle elected LNC chair,” said Michael Shanklin, a North Carolina delegate. “He will bring a fresh perspective towards marketing the party while sticking with Libertarian principles”

While Shanklin said he was disappointed that fellow North Carolinian Thomas Hill did not win an at-large seat, he was happy to see Ruwart and Nolan win.

“Overall, I’m happy with the diversity and tolerance of those in attendance at the convention and I believe the delegates voted in a manner that will unify the party,” he said.

Those sentiments were echoed by Barbara Howe, state party and delegation chair. “There is a good mix of new faces along with experienced members. I look forward to positive actions.”