Election predictions

The good news about the 2012 election is that it appears there may be a record turn-out. Unfortunately, since American voter turnout is so abysmally in the first place, that’s not saying much. I doubt we’ll approach the 80-90 percent voter turnout rate common in other democratic countries, even in those countries the United States has “made” democracies.

The bad news is that if you think the election will be over tomorrow, think again. I’m no political expert, but here are my predictions for 2012. I think President Barack Obama will be re-elected with a majority of the electoral vote – but Gov. Mitt Romney will get the plurality in the popular vote. This will send the Republicans into legal hysteria to rival that of the Democrats in the 2000 election.

And no one on Fox News will bat any eye when the GOP resorts to the same legalistic, obstructionist, word-parsing antics the Democrats engaged in in 2000. They’ll challenge the vote in every single state where it’s close, claiming “voter fraud,” “voter suppression,” or any other excuse they can come up with.

And the election could wind up being decided, probably wrongly again, by the U.S. Supreme Court.

In North Carolina, I predict that not only will Barbara Howe get more than two percent of the vote, thus keeping the Libertarian Party on the ballot, but Gov. Gary Johnson will earn enough votes to be the margin of difference between Romney and Obama, to Romney’s detriment.

This will inevitable lead to Republicans claiming that Romney “lost” the state because of Johnson. But I also predict that exit polls and post-election analysis will point out that Johnson will have earned the votes of both liberals and conservatives, Democrats and Republicans,and many unaffiliated voters. Of course, the Republicans won’t let the facts get in the way.

On the other hand, if the presidential vote goes the other way, I’m sure the Democrats will make the same charge they “lost” the state because of the Libertarians, since the won’t be able to blame the Greens who are not on the ballot.

Another scenario some experts have discussed, and one which I really like, postulates the possibility of an Electoral College tie. It is possible. This would mean that, under the U.S. Constitution, the newly elected U.S. House of Representatives will select the president, voting by states; and the new U.S. Senate will select the vice president.

Assuming things go as expected, that would mean a Republican-controlled U.S. House electing Mitt Romney president, and a Democratic-controlled U.S.Senate re-electing Joe Biden vice president.

What I like about this scenario is that it would initiate (maybe ignite is a better word) a debate on abolishing the Electoral College. It may be possible, once the hysterical rhetoric, illogical and unreasonable arguments are dispensed with, to actually educate Americans about how the Electoral College came to be, and why it is a good thing.

Libertarian veep candidate visits North Carolina

Libertarian vice presidential candidate Judge James B. Gray will visit North Carolina Aug. 267-28 and present a lecture at two colleges in the Triad and Triangle. The topic of his presentation will be “Why Our Drug Laws Have Failed and What We Can Do About It.”

The talk is based on Judge Gray’s book of the same title, which he subtitled “a judicial indictment of the War on Drugs.”

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N.C. Libertarians Oppose Amendment One

The North Carolina Libertarian Party unanimously passed a resolution opposing the proposed state constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage at its annual convention held Saturday in Durham. Rather than fulfilling the “great value” of a constitution, which is to protect individual rights, the amendment would deny rights to segment of the population and discriminate against a minority.

The Libertarians not only urged voters to defeat the amendment, which will be on the May 8 primary ballot, they also encouraged those planning marriage to “shun and disparage the licensure of the state,” in other words to not get a state marriage license. “A free and proud people do not ask the State for permission to marry,” the resolution says.

The resolution also reiterates the party platform plank calling for repeal of marriage license laws altogether to honor the principle that “couples are married when they declare they are.”

The party is a member of the Coalition to Protect North Carolina Families working to defeat the amendment, know as Amendment One. It would define marriage between a man and women as the only “domestic legal union” recognized by state law.

The resolution also asserts the amendment would violate the U.S. Constitution’s prohibition against impairing the obligation of contracts for many couples married in other states.” In addition, the amendment advances “no legitimate governmental interest” and is so vaguely worded that “no one can predict the scope of its harm.”

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Join The Million Vote March: Vote Libertarian to Stop All War

BURNET, Texas (Feb. 23) – The Lee Wrights for President campaign has launched another project to help win votes for the Libertarian Party and Libertarian candidates in 2012. The Million Vote March is an effort to achieve a historic one million votes for the Libertarian candidate for President, and to encourage people to vote for all Libertarian candidates on the ballot.

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The State of the Union is Still a State of War

BURNET, Texas (Jan. 27) – A year ago, after President Barack Obama’s State of the Union message I wrote an op-ed entitled “The State of the Union is a State of War.” Lamentably, a year later, after his 2012 address I am compelled to write that the State of the Union is still a state of war. And there’s no sign that the wars will come to an end anytime soon, particularly so long as Democrats, Republicans, and their corporate and special interest supporters keep using our tax dollars to fund these wars so that they can benefit and profit.

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The Fair Tax Isn’t Fair, It’s a Farce

“There cannot be a good tax nor a just one; every tax rests its case on compulsion.” – Frank Chodorov

BURNET, Texas (Jan. 7) – The so-called Fair Tax is not fair; on the contrary, it is a farce based on fallacies and falsehoods. Sadly, some libertarians have fallen for the bogus arguments uttered by proponents of this national sales tax and bought into the idea that this is the “best we can hope to get.” This is a justification very similar to the flawed reasoning that induces some people to vote for the “lesser of two evils.”

One of the core values of libertarianism is the right of people to keep all the fruits of their labor. No taxes are fair. All taxes are, at their root, immoral because they involve the use of force to take money from people, money that rightfully belongs to them, and give it to others. That is why libertarians would fund most government services with voluntary user fees.

The most dangerous claim used by advocates of the Fair Tax is that it’s “revenue neutral,” that it will allow the federal government to collect just as much money as the income tax. Fair Tax supporters say this as if it were a good thing. It is not. The greatest danger facing our nation isn’t terrorism, global warming or the energy crisis. It is out-of-control, unbridled government spending. It is our $15 trillion federal debt, which grows every day.

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People must want to be free

“Man loves liberty, even if he does not know that he loves it. He is driven by it and flees from where it does not exist.” – Jose Marti

BURNET, Texas (Dec. 10) – Politicians are very adept about making excuses for their failures. The greater the failure, the bigger, more absurd the excuse. Shortly after the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, while Americans were still reeling from shock, our political leaders very quickly conjured up a canard to cover up their failure to predict, deter, or avoid the attack. Rather than accept any responsibility at all for the tragedy, or even to acknowledge that American foreign policy was at least partly to blame, the ruling elites resorted to the mantra: “They hate us because of our freedom.”

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Lee Wrights video op eds

BURNET, Texas (Dec. 1) – R. Lee Wrights has produced the first in a series of video op-eds highlighting the main issues of his campaign for the Libertarian presidential nomination in 2012. The first video op-ed is “Groups Rights A Dangerous Delusion.”

Shane Killian, a Stanley, N.C. videographer, is producing the video op-eds. The video op-eds and other video of the Wrights campaign can be viewed on the Wrights for President YouTube channel.

The campaign will also be producing video commercials that will be made available to Libertarian candidates and affiliates to help them spread the libertarian message in the 2012 election. Each spot will include a 10-second segment where candidates and affiliates can include their own name and message. They will be available free of charge. Each commercial will focus on a single topic but all the spots will emphasize a principled libertarian position.

Wrights, 53, a libertarian writer and political activist, is seeking the presidential nomination because he believes the Libertarian message in 2012 must be a loud, clear and unequivocal call to stop all war. To that end he has pledged that 10 percent of all donations to his campaign will be spent for ballot access so that the stop all war message can be heard in all 50 states.

Wrights is a lifetime member of the Libertarian Party and co-founder and editor of the free speech online magazine Liberty For All. Born in Winston-Salem, N.C., he now lives and works in Texas.

Presidential candidates should read the job description

BURNET, Texas (Nov. 5) – One of the first things you do when you’re applying for a job is to read the job description to find out the qualifications, duties and responsibilities of the office. After listening to years of presidential campaign speeches and debates, it seems to me that most candidates for the office simply haven’t read the job description for President of the United States. The Founding Fathers wrote it some 200 years ago, and despite some wear and tear, it is still perhaps one of the finest job descriptions ever written for the leader of a free republic.

The presidential job description was drafted, refined and honed during the months of the Constitutional Convention held in 1787. The duties of the President of the United States are outlined in Article II. The placement is deliberate. The first article of the Constitution establishes the Congress, the legislative branch, because the Founders believed the legislative was the most important function of government. As if to emphasize that point, the first mention of the President of the United States in the Constitution is in Article I, Section 7. This section says he must sign a bill passed by Congress before it becomes law. If he does not sign it, or he vetoes it, it can only become law if two-thirds of each House vote to approve it.

So what does the presidential job description say? First, there are three simple qualifications: you must be a natural-born citizen, 35 years old, and a United States resident for 14 years. I am all three. The “selection committee” for the job is technically the Electoral College, composed of people chosen by the states.” But in reality, it is the people of the United States who hire the president. The length of service is four years.

The first thing a new president does is to take an oath. It is a plain and simple oath, similar to the one I took many years ago when I enlisted in the U.S. Air Force. The oath states: “I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.” But in those few words lie some very powerful sentiments.

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