Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

Libertarians Name Gary Johnson as Presidential Pick | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
Select Page
Media ID: 55351690

Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson speaks to supporters and delegates at the National Libertarian Party Convention. AP

Washington-The Libertarian Party has announced that it picked Gary Johnson, the former Republican governor of New Mexico, as its nominee for the presidential elections that will take place next November.

“I tell the truth, I am not a liar,” Johnson said at the party’s nominating convention in Orlando, Florida.

He insisted that his frank approach would appeal to disaffected voters and help the long-marginal Libertarians achieve “major-party status.”

In 2012, he was the Libertarian candidate, garnering 1.2 million votes, the party’s best showing ever.

In an interview earlier this month with Agence France Presse, Johnson described Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton as “the two most polarizing figures in American politics today.”

“I’m more liberal than Hillary on social issues, and I’m more conservative on fiscal issues than Ted Cruz was,” said Johnson, referring to the Texas senator who quit the Republican race early this month.

That, Johnson said, made him “the best of both worlds.”

Johnson has said in other interviews that he rejects interference abroad.

“If the United States comes under attack, then we will attack. But we should stop imperialism,” he said.

Asked if he would accept to run as Trump’s Vice President, he said: “I disagree with Trump, and Hillary Clinton will never pick me. I am realistic,” Johnson added.

The Libertarian Party has been running presidential tickets since 1972, but has never been a major factor. The party’s best showing was 1980, when candidate Ed Clark got slightly more than 1 percent of the vote. The only electoral vote the party has received was in 1972, when a renegade Virginia elector pledged to President Richard Nixon cast his ballot for Libertarian John Hospers instead.