Saturday, August 7, 2010

Long Island Libertarians Endorses Randy Altschuler For Congress (1st C.D. NY)

On August 7, 2010, Long Island Libertarians, a chartered chapter of Empire State Libertarians, announced its endorsement of Randy Altschuler for Congress from the 1st Congressional District (New York), which is located entirely in Suffolk County. In announcing the endorsement, Dr. Tom Stevens, Chair of Long Island Libertarians, said, "Randy Altschuler is a candidate who believes in smaller government, lower taxes and respect for the constitutional rights of all Americans."

The following are excerpts of statements made by Randy Altschuler regarding his positions on issues:

I am a proud fiscal conservative committed to free market principles. My top priority is to promote proven pro-growth and low tax policies for the First Congressional District and our nation. I know that low taxes, a renewed focus on revitalizing small business and the indefatigable spirit of American ingenuity promises to return our country to economic prosperity. That's why I signed Americans for Tax Reform's "Taxpayer Protection Pledge" -- opposing any effort to raise taxes. As a small businessman, I know firsthand the challenges of starting a business from scratch, meeting a payroll and the pride that comes with creating jobs. Today, hardworking Long Islanders feel the burdensome effect of a Democrat-controlled Congress, with no check and balance on their authority. Their big government model of massive spending and higher taxes has produced anemic growth and few jobs for our struggling economy. We must stop the Washington politicians from spending trillions of dollars we don't have and strapping future generations with massive debt we can't afford. It's essential that we cut the corporate tax rate which serves as a stranglehold on the competitiveness of American companies abroad. Government's proper role in the economy is to facilitate opportunity for individual initiative and entrepreneurship -- not to stifle its growth with ever-increasing financial and regulatory burdens. I believe my experience building companies and creating jobs has prepared me to contribute to changing the culture in Washington from day one.

We must support our nation's military by providing the best training, technology and equipment available. I am committed to ensuring that America stands ready to effectively confront the global security challenges of the 21st Century, such as terrorism and nuclear proliferation. We must ensure: that our military remains the world's strongest and most agile, able to handle traditional and evolving threats; that our intelligence community receives the full backing of the federal government -- in word and deed -- and becomes ever more proficient at anticipating impending danger; and that we continue to nurture the international alliances and relationships that promote peace and security.

I will work tirelessly to preserve the rights of the individual and our state by upholding the constitutional limits and restraints placed on government by our nation's founders. I will fight to defend every law-abiding American's right to protect their family and property.

Randy Altschuler is seeking the nomination of the Republican Party for Congress in the 1st C.D. and is seeking to unseat Tim Bishop, the incumbent Democratic Congressman. Long Island Libertarians considered endorsing Christopher Cantwell, the nominee of the Suffolk County Libertarian Party for Congress from the 1st C.D., but rejected him on many grounds, including the fact that he is an ex-convict and a future convict, and because Mr. Cantwell believes the United States Constitution as currently written entitles United States citizens to purchase and privately own nuclear weapons, a position that caused Jeff Grizlo, a Suffolk County resident, to call him "Kooky Cantwell".

On May 2, 2010, Mr. Cantwell posted the following to a Libertarian Party Yahoo Group:

I’ve had the nuclear 2nd Amendment discussion before and I agree, the Constitution does not define arms, so I see legitimacy to the argument that the 2nd Amendment, as written, would provide such a protection as radical as that may be, a Constitutional Amendment defining arms would be required to outlaw private ownership of nuclear weapons.

On May 6, 2010, Jeff Grizlo, Executive Vice-President of Rising Action who is also a Suffolk County resident wrote:

I am used to people getting elected to Congress who later get arrested. It is an interesting twist in the natural order of things and certainly a change in tactics for the Suffolk County Libertarian Party to consider nominating an ex-con right up front. People deserve second chances but there are a few problems with this particular prospective candidate. While he was incarcerated in the year 2000, he has been very silent about the circumstances that surrounded his arrest and conviction. All he has said is that he did not go to prison for "good behavior" and that if he raped a 4 year old girl, he would like to think the Suffolk County Libertarians would not be considering given him their nomination. I am not so sure. In addition to being an ex-con, there is evidence that he has not been fully rehabilitated. According to recent reports, he is currently awaiting trial on a D.W.I. charge. Finally, I recently criticized Christopher Cantwell for his stated belief that the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution as currently written gives a constitutional right to all citizens to privately own and possess nuclear weapons. For that stand, I called him Kooky Cantwell. So basically, the Suffolk County Libertarian Party is set to endorse an alcoholic, ex-con who believes everyone has a current constitutional right to own and possess nuclear weapons. Perhaps it's the Suffolk County Libertarian Party that should be called kooky!

Dr. Tom Stevens, Chair of Long Island Libertarians, provided this update:

It appears that at the time this discussion was taking place, Christopher Cantwell was facing an upcoming trial on two felony charges that promised to land him in prison for four years. On the eve of trial, he plead guilty to misdemeanor charges and agreed to serve time in jail after Election Day in November.

The following are excerpts from a statement made regarding this issue by Christopher Cantwell on June 22, 2010:

While I was on a date, on Saturday March 7th 2009 at 3:30am, I was pulled over for doing 55mph in a 40mph zone in Easthampton NY. I had been drinking...The officer asked me to exit the vehicle and perform some sobriety tests...His police report stated that I failed all 3 tests...I was taken to the station, and there I was asked, under threat of my license being suspended, and my being arrested, and my vehicle seized anyway, if I would submit to a breath alcohol test...I was charged with one count of felony driving while intoxicated; per se, and one count of felony driving while intoxicated...I have, the entire time, intended to fight these charges, relying on the last hope for Justice in America – a Jury of my peers. But, in the last hours before jury selection a final plea offer was made. The offer was that I would be sentenced to 45 days in the county jail, of which I will serve 30, minus the 1 day I had in from my arrest, and plead guilty to one misdemeanor count of DWI per se. If I was found guilty at trial, I would have faced a felony conviction and up to 4 years in a state penitentiary. The arrangement was worked out so that I will return for sentencing on November 15th 2010, after the election, and my 30th Birthday which is on November 12th. I will be released before Christmas, and before I would take office if elected.

Dr. Tom Stevens, Chair of Long Island Libertarians, said:

After considering the qualifications and positions of all the candidates seeking election to Congress from the 1st Congressional District, there was no doubt in our minds that Randy Altschuler is the candidate who will best represent libertarian principles and who has the credibility to actually get elected to Congress.

Long Island Libertarians is a chartered chapter of Empire State Libertarians representing libertarians and libertarian-minded individuals in Kings County, Queens County, Nassau County and Suffolk County.

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