Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Ernie Hancock & Wayne Allyn Root Face-Off In Debate For National LP Chair

On Monday, May 10, 2010, Ernest Hancock & Wayne Allyn Root appeared at the Ukrainian East Village Restaurant located at 140 2nd Avenue in Manhattan for a meeting co-sponsored by the Manhattan Libertarian Party and the Libertarian Party of Queens County where each candidate for National LP Chair had an opportunity to present their vision for the future of the Libertarian Party.

Mr. Hancock led off with a presentation which was supposed to be about The Power of the Individual Activist but turned out instead to be a litany of his past battles with the national Libertarian Party. He mentioned the Arizona Libertarian Party's former opposition to the Unified Membership Program (UMP) and stated how the National LP tried to recognize an insurgent Libertarian Party faction out of Tucson and how eventually, the elected state leadership won in the Courts and then deliberately decided not to place Harry Browne on the ballot in Arizona as the Libertarian Party's Presidential Candidate, putting someone else on instead.

Mr. Hancock also mentioned how he came up with the "rEVOLution" logo but then refused to support Ron Paul for the Republican Presidential Nomination even though he knew Ron Paul would defend and be proud of the fact that he is a Libertarian. He also stated he would like the Libertarian Party to stick by its principles and be THE Anti-War Party. Mr. Hancock stated he has no interest in "obtaining a seat at the King's Table" and has no interest in competing for elective office with the Democrats and Republicans. His only interest is in spreading "a principled libertarian message to change people's minds" and believes "electoral success will follow as a natural result of the party's success in promoting its principles".

Mr. Hancock said "immigrants came to this country and wrapped their arms and legs around the liberty tree" and "now we are the only ones still protecting that tree". He complimented Wayne Allyn Root for being a fighter but said about his efforts, "You're scaling the ladder but it's against the wrong freakin' wall!"

When Wayne Allyn Root spoke, he set forth a vision for the Libertarian Party that was completely different from that laid out by Ernie Hancock. Mr. Root described himself as a "Big-Tent Libertarian" who, if elected National LP Chair intends to be "Rainmaker-In Chief" raising sufficient funds to make the Libertarian Party and its candidates viable and competitive throughout the country. He stated that if elected, he would ask LP candidates "to take a pledge not to accept any campaign contributions from corporations, lobbyists or unions".

Wayne Allyn Root stated, "The Purity Police have been chasing the impure away through vicious comments. It is time we welcomed more people into our ranks with a message of smaller government and more individual freedom". He said, "it does the party no good focusing on issues like the legalization of heroin that will just scare people away". Mr. Root mentioned how "important it is that we package our message in a way that will be attractive to voters". As an example, he mentioned that when the fish "grouper" was on restaurant menus, no one bought it but when they started calling it "Chilean Sea Bass", people ordered it to the point that the fish is now an endangered species. His point was that "packaging and presentation" is everything.

After the meeting, Dr. Tom Stevens, LPQC State Representative, invited nine attendees to join him at Cafe Mocha for coffee and continuing political discussions. In attendance was Alden Link, the LPNY Candidate for Lt. Governor; Carl Person, the LPNY Candidate for Attorney General; Sam Sloan, MLP State Representative; and Dallwyn Merck, LPQC Secretary. A poll was taken regarding who everyone thought won the debate. The result was unanimous. Wayne Allyn Root was declared the winner. Dr. Tom Stevens said he "fully expects Wayne Allyn Root to be elected National LP Chair" and "for the Libertarian Party to enter into a new era of growth and opportunity under Root's inspired leadership".

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