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Montana Libertarian Mark Wicks Has A Daughter Named Liberty And A Plan To Change U.S. House’s Political Landscape



There’s nothing more independent than being a rancher whose family has lived on the same 1,600-acre tract for more than a century. When you’re a rancher, you’re not used to outsiders dictating what you can and cannot do … and you don’t dictate to your neighbor, either.

That is exactly where Montana native Mark Wicks is coming from.

MarkWicks-MugshotWicks, 47, is the Libertarian candidate in a pivotal U.S. House Special Election that will take place May 25. Since the national reapportionment in the early 1990s, Montana has had only one U.S. House seat, known as its ‘at-large’ slot.

The U.S. House at-large seat is currently vacant after Ryan Zinke was appointed and confirmed as President Trump’s Secretary of Interior. By state law in Montana, the U.S. House seat has to be filled within 85 to 100 days of the vacancy, which the May 25 special election will do. The seat has been Republican since the late 1990s, but Wicks is out to change that.

This special election has all kinds of national ramifications, as the Democrats are hoping it will become a referendum on Trump’s first 100 days in office. Republicans are spending big money to avoid the potential embarrassment. The money has been flowing and the political pop stars are finding their way to Big Sky Country.

Wicks wants to throw a gold-embossed wrench into the rusty machinery, Libertarian style.

“I don’t think you have to worry about me being the spoiler because I have no intention of coming in third,” Wicks quipped during his interview on Tuesday with The Libertarian Identity.

RELATED: Mark Wicks Campaign Donation Page

RELATED: Libertarian Mark Wicks’ campaign page

On April 29, Wicks was in a televised debate (See KTVQ Debate) with Democrat Rob Quist and Republican Greg Gianforte, and the Libertarian reaction to his performance has been positive. Also, in two polls so far, Wicks has peaked at 11%.

Wicks told TLI he’s always been a Libertarian. Though LPs don’t register as such in the open primary state of Montana, he said he has voted for Libertarian candidates since he was 18 – when they were an option on the ballot, which oftentimes they weren’t.

“When you live out here and do everything on your own, you feel the freedom to do whatever you want however you want, and then you see people trying to stop you from doing what you choose … it leaves a bad taste,” Wicks said. “The people all around me are very independent people. We don’t like government telling us what to do. My family has taken care of this land for more than 100 years without the government’s help.”

RELATED: Huffington Post – Special Election Nobody Is Following Could Deal A Huge Blow to Trump

HillCountyMontanaWicks and his family of six reside in Hill County, Montana near the town of Inverness – just south of the Canadian border in north central Montana. His grandparents came to the area in 1913 to be ranchers. He currently raises cattle on his land, along with his haying operation.

“We finally paid it off,” Wicks joked, when asked about the property. “We might even turn a profit one of these days.”

He and his family also transport agricultural goods westward during peak season. Most people who ranch also have jobs outside the home, or at least one of the adults does. He and his wife of 21 years, Beth, are part of the rural route post office operation locally. Their oldest son Hunter (18) is at Montana State-Northern in Havre, studying agricultural technology. Jewel (16) is a high school student who Wicks said may be the next politician in the brood. Choral (12) and Liberty (5) – yes, Liberty – round out the family.

With so much responsibility at home already in hand, Wicks did go back-and-forth with the decision to enter this race as a Libertarian. But, he looked at this as another responsibility he couldn’t shirk.

RELATED: Libertarian Mark Wicks’ campaign page

“I had been kind of thinking about doing this for a long time and I kept looking at whether this is the right time in our lives, and are the kids the right age for this,” Wicks said. “And I came to the conclusion that this wasn’t really the perfect time in my life for this, but I thought it looked so bad if people didn’t step up and do something in this race.”

On March 11th, the MTLP held a convention in Helena and Wicks won on the third ballot with 56% after eight LP candidates originally threw their hats in.

When it comes to his strongest Libertarian stances, Wicks doesn’t hesitate to bring up the fiscal responsibility side of the equation. He feels that if he has to run a balanced budget in his own home to survive, the Federal Government should too. He said he’d be behind massive spending cuts and would fight in Congress to make it happen – that, first and foremost is his major push. He doesn’t feel either of the older parties attempt to cut spending anymore. It is his biggest beef.

LibertarianPartyMontanaWicks’ (BallotPedia page) next biggest sticking point is education. For decades, his family tree knew well the successes of the hyper local one-room schoolhouse – that they didn’t need federal intervention to educate.

“It’s really important to me,” Wicks said. “It sounds like common core is going away, and that really needed to be done. I think we should phase out the Department of Education. We have good teachers in this state, and there’s nothing that another level of government is going to tell our teachers that they don’t already have a handle on.

“Let the states decide to teach their students instead of this one-size fits all setup. Our students have a lot of different needs than those in New York and California.”

Already, he achieved a victory when it came to reaching the debate stage to sit equally with Quist and Gianforte. But it didn’t come easily. Two earlier debates were cancelled for no reason, and he wasn’t even notified about two editorial board dates in some Montana’s larger towns/publications.

RELATED: Roundtable video reaction to April 29 Montana U.S. House debate

Wicks originally received an email saying he would be excluded from the KTVQ debate. He immediately got ahold of Montana Libertarian Party (MTLP) leaders Ron Vandevender (State Chairman) and Michael Fucci, as well as LNC Region 1 Rep Caryn Ann Harlos and they helped raise awareness of Wicks’ snub, and ultimately helped get the decision turned around. KTVQ News Director Jon Stepanek first message cited time constraints as their reason for not inviting Wicks to the Billings debate.

“We just started sending the word out, not just to Libertarians but across the board and people were upset that we were being excluded and it started coming together,” Wicks said. “We proved that we met the standards they set for us. We have two unpopular candidates who are both weak. We have a chance here, this is a very Libertarian state.”

His competitors? Wicks sees them as identical twins. What exactly is the difference? In fact, he points to their TV advertisements as an example. Both have televised ads shooting televisions.

“I’ve told PETA …you know, the People for the Ethical Treatment of Appliances … that I won’t be shooting any TVs in this campaign,” Wicks said.

We’re down to 23 days on this one, sports fans.

Want to see the full U.S. House debate from April 29? Click me!


Registered Libertarians Now Comprise 40% Of One Florida Town’s City Council



One of the big pushes within the Libertarian movement is to be active on a hyper-local level – and there’s no better way to be active than to face that challenge head on and run for office on behalf of your friends and neighbors.

Five-generation Frostproof (Fla.) native Martin Sullivan is a two-year veteran of his hometown’s City Council, and on Tuesday evening he was elected Vice Mayor of Frostproof. But he wasn’t the only big news for Libertarians, as newly converted LP registrant Austin Gravley was also sworn in for his first term. Gravley won his seat with 62 percent of the vote on April 4, and had registered LP just one day prior.

FrostproofFloridaMapToday, 40 percent of the Frostproof City Council is sticking up for what Libertarians believe in – starting with fiscal responsibility. While city council elections are non-party affiliated, the platform carries over.

“I just found myself aligning more and more with Libertarian views,” Gravley, 25, told TLI. “I like the idea of government leaving everybody alone. I’ll admit I was a Republican before … but I just don’t want to keep going down this road where we have two options, big government or bigger government. So maybe I just wanted to prove a point by switching to the Libertarian Party … I like the idea of having a third party.”

Sullivan is one of only 11 mayors or vice-mayors nationwide who are registered Libertarians, and only four municipalities in the country have more than one registered Libertarian on their council. See list below this story for details (source,

Sullivan and Gravley both face the reality of their hometown’s fiscal challenges. Their primary focus is to cut costs and preserve the identity of a town that has had Sullivan’s family in the vicinity since the 1880s, along with three generations of Gravley’s family. It is a fiercely independent town, which has led to a mostly Republican electorate being open to two men who align with a different political ideology. With the citrus industry struggling, it has been forced to brainstorm the new direction.

Maybe having two Libertarians in the leadership is a start?

RELATED: TLI Talks to LNC Chair Nick Sarwark

The biggest goal for Frostproof? It doesn’t want to be gobbled up by the bigger fish of Polk County and central Florida. It’s a town that is proud of its history – as evidenced by the Centennial celebration that will take place next year. Sullivan said one of his biggest goals as a city leader is to try to figure out what is the next step for a town whose primary economic base has been the citrus industry – for most of the past century.

So it’s a three-headed challenge. First, fend off outside interests that in many ways want to absorb Frostproof. Second, avoid forcing the residents to swallow a heaping dose of “taxation without representation”. Third, figure out the best way to market the area’s top attributes – like its lakes and winter climate, its natural attributes.

The town of about 3,000 residents is in a transition, and two Libertarians want to be a part of the solution, not the demise.

Sullivan’s winning message back during his first election in 2015 was to keep the local volunteer fire department independent of the county because it ultimately would keep things cheaper and independent. There were also worries that a consolidation with Polk County’s services may mean longer response times – meaning paying more, potentially for lower quality. Sullivan’s push to rescind the previous council’s decision to hand things over to the county was what got him elected.

Another big pushback has come against powerful outside influences wanting to siphon off Frostproof’s water. Sullivan has fought that initiative, along with other council members. Again, battling for his constituents, though Sullivan admits it probably won’t be the last time these strong interests will come from the growing Orlando Metro area – which is thirsty and searching.

“We keep reminding the people that it is their money, and the one thing about Frostproof is it is a really independent-minded town,” Sullivan, 46, told TLI. “They already have that mindset. They see how the town was built originally, built privately with very little government intervention. We’re just a small, rural, isolated town in the southeast part of the county and we’ve never really gotten any real help from anybody.

“There are some who would like for us to unincorporate and be a part of the county so they can absorb our tax base, and we’ll continue to have that fight with them.”

Sullivan, who today works in the Citrus industry, and Gravley, who is an independent distributor, both say their primary focus moving forward will be to keep the budget under control. With his three-year term, Sullivan will be up for re-election in 2018, while Gravley will be on board until 2020. Sullivan said he’ll continue to run for office, that this isn’t a one-time thing.

One of the rallying points for the community is Frostproof Middle-High School, and the mascot is the Bulldog — known for its tenacity and bite when provoked, yet also known for its calmer demeanor when left alone …

… an appropriate mascot for this community and its most recently elected leaders.

The Frostproof duo join Marco Island City Councilman Jared Grifoni as registered Libertarians on city councils in Florida, along with several elected municipal positions in Miami-Dade – held by Gary Gerstein, Keon Grayson, Marco Alvarez Jr. and Marialexandra Garcia, Dennis Misigoy, all Libertarians (SOURCE:

Arkansas, Bobby Tullis, Mineral Springs Mayor
California, Jeff Hewitt, Calimesa Mayor
Colorado, Beau Woodcock, Milliken Mayor
Florida, Martin Sullivan, Frostproof Vice-Mayor
Illinois, Tami Wessel, Brookport Mayor
Kentucky, Larry Odom-Groh, Bellemeade Mayor
Maryland, Leo Martin, Mtn Lake Park Mayor
Montana, Michael Schoenike, Red Lodge Mayor
Pennsylvania, Timothy A. Russell, Emlenton Mayor
South Carolina, Bill Woolsey, James Island Mayor
Washington, Bob Bromley, Sumas Mayor


Frostproof, Florida

Crystal City, Minnesota

Cressona Borough, Pennsylvania

Lago Vista, Texas

Libertarian U.S. Senate candidate Paul Stanton questions whether FEC regulations were violated with debate invitations


For more information, contact:

Brian McLaughlin | Media Director – Committee to Elect Paul Stanton

Email: |Twitter: @BrianMacWriter

DELAND, Fla. (Oct. 26, 2016): Libertarians are used to being excluded from debates in Florida, so the lack of an invitation tonight for candidate Paul Stanton isn’t surprising. While Rubio and Murphy meet at Broward College this evening, the Stanton campaign is staring at the FEC regulations, wondering why they haven’t been enforced.

On Sept. 1, two days after the primaries, Rubio and Murphy were invited to tonight’s debate—and both accepted. While the debate criteria stated that the ‘qualified’ poll to earn an invitation had to be conducted during the month of September, the Democrat and Republican were invited before any general-election polling even occurred. Most polls take a minimum of 3-to-4 days to run their full cycle. The only polls coming out prior to Sept. 1 were primary polls and hypothetical matchup polls. So why were invitations extended prior to a ‘independent, reputable poll’ being selected?

In early October—in response to inquiries by the Stanton campaign—the debate organizers stated that the poll they deemed the debate ‘qualifier’ was the Mason Dixon poll conducted from Sept. 27-29.

So why did the first two candidates get an invitation on Sept. 1? Was it simply because they were from the Republican and Democratic parties?

Here is what FEC regulations state ( 11 CFR 110.13): “For all debates, staging organization(s) must use pre-established objective criteria to determine which candidates may participate in a debate. For general election debates, staging organizations(s) shall not use nomination by a particular political party as the sole objective criterion to determine whether to include a candidate in a debate.”

The debate organizers—Florida Press Association and Leadership Florida—established official debate criteria (12.5% threshold, 3.5% margin of error, 815 or more ‘likely Florida voters’) immediately following the primaries on Aug. 30. Stanton met that criteria threshold twice in September in PPP polling, only to have those PPP polls disqualified because of technicalities.

Stanton has polled at 10, 9 and 6 percent in three PPP polls, as well as 5 percent in the chosen Mason-Dixon poll. A recent straw poll at the University of South Florida had Stanton at 7 percent. In the 2010 Florida U.S. Senate election, 5 percent of the vote would have equated to 270,000 votes.

Without even needing to go further, this debate violates stated regulations. Yet FEC regulations are rarely enforced. So for the third time in six years, a military veteran who is running for office in Florida as a Libertarian (Alex Snitker for U.S. Senate in 2010, Adrian Wyllie for Governor in 2014 and now Paul Stanton) is being excluded from debates, thus diminishing the candidate’s ability to be heard.

Paul Stanton could be louder about this potential violation, but has decided not to pursue this issue in the legal system. He does, however, wish to publicize the continued abuses of power that take place when it comes to the Republican and Democratic parties. We have seen it in the presidential campaign, and now we are getting a taste of it closer to home in Florida.

Stanton reacted: “I would have a strong case, but even if we pursued this through the court system and won, we would be using government coercion to force a political agenda on a private entity. As a Libertarian, I oppose that type of government coercion. Even though I won’t file a complaint, I think these questions should be raised.”

Paul Stanton is a U.S. Army veteran who served in Iraq, receiving his honorable discharge as a Sergeant. Following his service, he became an outspoken Libertarian activist. Stanton feels he is the ‘Peace Candidate’ in the race. He currently resides in DeLand, Florida working in computer programming and data analytics. He captured the historic first statewide Libertarian primary back in late August.

Johnson-Weld Signs Are Being Stolen Now,We Are Definitely Spooking Them


Tuesday morning, I did a quick spin through the local community to check on my campaign signs for Johnson-Weld.

About 90 percent of the signs I put out were missing. This is after 10 days of not being touched–and the ones that did remain (mostly at the busy early voting centers that opened Monday) had Hillary Clinton signs placed about two feet in front of my Johnson-Weld signs. This blocked the sight lines for the precious few they didn’t swipe.

All of this happened between 3 p.m. Monday afternoon and my Tuesday morning ‘check’. This morning (Wednesday), another check found two more of my remaining Johnson signs had been plucked overnight, sometimes with the metal stands still intact (see photo above) while other local campaign signs are still standing just feet away.

Case in point? This isn’t the mowers moving pesky signs so they can do their job, or county workers removing campaign swag, or a kid playing tricks–this was a targeted 24-hour concerted effort. It might just be local Hillary volunteers doing their own thing, or maybe it’s an edict from above? Who knows.

But it means they’re scared, and they should be. Is this anecdotal? Yes. Is it indicative? Good question right?

Oddly, the Trump signs didn’t have Hillary signs placed two feet in front of them. Interesting.

Again, most of my signs … signs I have paid my own good money for … are gone. They aren’t tossed in the weeds behind where we placed them, or in a nearby trash can. They’re gone. When I mentioned this on social media Tuesday morning, it appears Johnson-Weld signs are disappearing in many locations both statewide and nationally.

It’s two weeks out and the fossil parties are getting frantic. Maybe their internal polls are scaring them, because we all know the public polls are BS.

Admittedly, I’m new to all this craziness. I’d never done much more than get a Ron Paul yard sign in the primaries in 2008 and 2012 and I never got diehard into campaigning until this year. I’ve put many dollars and hours into this year’s campaigns.

This was the sign you stole, jerk – the one my 6-year daughter begged us to assemble prior to the last sign drop.

Though new to all this, I’m not naive … I know this crap happens.

It just pisses me off that I spent 100s of dollars on donations and received dozens of signs in return, only to have some fool think it’s OK to steal them ‘for their cause’.

I’m making the assumption here that this is a Hillary supporter(s), based on the consistent placement of her signs in front of ours. That plus the known fear the Clinton camp has of Gov. Johnson taking precious votes away from her in the most important state in the nation — Florida.

Doesn’t this just exemplify the difference in principles between a Libertarian and a ‘by all means necessary’ Democrat? Think about it, two key things were violated here:

No. 1) Don’t mess with my personal property. I paid for those signs with money out of my excessively taxed paycheck and put them in appropriate places where other signs were located. In the end, they didn’t steal all of the other local race signs and amendment measure signs – these clowns only stole mine.

No. 2) You messed with my freedom to be heard. You have a right to it, I have a right to it. It’s third-grade civics. Need a refresher course? 

Oh, and there’s that other minor detail … it’s against the damned law.

I’m so mad I could spit right now. And to hear this is happening to Johnson-Weld signs all over the place, specifically when we are a grassroots operation that doesn’t have millions of dollars sitting around? It makes you want to do the same thing to theirs …

BUT I refuse to do that. Even though I doubt these idiots actually spent their own money on the signs (Soros wrote a check for it and likely bought them all a steak dinner), I do support their right to free speech, even though they don’t have a clue of what to do with that strange thing called freedom. They know all about the first half of the word, the ‘free’ part, but the complete version makes them scratch their heads.

Call me naive, call me whiny, call me a Boy Scout for believing in the ideals above–but I do believe in them and I will never become a cynic and change.

Also, if I catch you in the act of doing the above, I’d be exercising my right to split your lip and color you black and blue.

Game on.

Americans, This Debate Exclusion Rubbish Must Stop Now-END IT



Folks, when are you going to start screaming about being deprived?

You scream bloody murder when your NFL game isn’t on TV because of a cable negotiations. You scream bloody murder when ‘The Walking Dead’ is preempted by major national news. You scream bloody murder when the grocery store only has two lanes open.

But you don’t scream bloody murder when you’re starved of the chance to get to know a potential leader. Nobody bats an eyelid about it.

RELATED: Libertarian U.S. Senate candidate Paul Stanton qualifies for Oct. 26 debate, awaits official invitation

Governor Gary Johnson and Governor Bill Weld are being left out of the debates based on twisted technicalities, and we all know nobody knew a damned thing about Bernie Sanders before he got into the debates with Hillary Clinton.

stanton-genelectionballotIn Florida, U.S. Senate candidate Paul Stanton actually met the debate criteria for the Oct. 26 event at Broward College. His debate fate? Eliminated on technicalities just hours before a hurricane hit.

Johnson and Stanton aren’t losing, you are.

Johnson has polled as highly as 13-percent (twice) in national polls and in the double digits 23 times this year. If you use the 2012 presidential vote totals, that translates to no less than 12,750,000 million votes.

Are you telling me a candidate that could get 12 million votes shouldn’t be on the stinking debate stage to make his pitch to the FINALLY tuned in American public? Hey, if Johnson finishes with 8 percent, that’s still nearly 10 million votes. Even 5 percent? Do the math-6 million Americans chose the guy.

How does that kind of support not reserve a spot on the debate stage … especially against these two clowns who in two debates still haven’t actually debated an actual election issue?

With Stanton, it’s the same damned thing-just on a smaller scale. Stanton has polled at 10 percent, 9 percent, 5 percent and today (Oct. 14) polled at 6 percent in the most recent PPP poll.

RELATED: Get to know Florida U.S. Senate candidate Paul Stanton

Let’s just say he finishes with 5 percent-his worst poll. That’s still 271,000 votes based on the 2010 U.S. Senatorial election numbers in Florida.

So let me repeat myself, Floridians: Pollsters have said Paul Stanton’s the choice of between 5 percent and 10 percent of prospective voters in Florida. That translates to between 271,000 and 542,000 voters.

But nah, let’s just leave Paul Stanton off stage. He’s just a sideshow, the committees seem to think. Again, Paul’s not losing here … you are.

See, here’s what I don’t get. Every frickin’ election season of my life, I’ve listened to people bitch and moan in the 11th hour that they don’t have enough options on the ballot.

“Are these the only two options we have? They both stink.”


Well yeah, of course they stink. These two parties have both been sitting around for 150-plus years, fermenting.

There are other options right in front of you, but because you don’t do your homework, you don’t hear about them until you get your sample ballot.

You want options? Let me tell you about options. They are in the Libertarian Party and this train is leaving the station. It’s still moving slowly enough (for now) for you to jump on and enjoy the scenery while we make stops along the way.

Man … people say they don’t have faith in the future? That couldn’t be further from the truth. In one of the PPP polls Paul Stanton was included in, he drew 19 percent of the millennial vote. Gov. Johnson polls in the 30s with millennials.

So the good news is, this will all be changing.

All in all, this election season is a big, fat victory no matter how you look at it. Johnson received 1.3 million in the presidential election four years ago. This year, at the very worst, he’ll quindruple that and he may even affect the electoral college–with absolutely zero help from the debate stage or 99-percent of the mainstream ‘pundits’.

Stanton will also likely surpass by leaps and bounds the vote totals that Libertarian candidate Alex Snitker worked extremely hard for in 2010. That groundwork has been laid and advanced, and Stanton took the cause even further when he captured the first Libertarian statewide primary in Florida history. That fact will be celebrated 50 years from now, when the fossil parties are ‘taking cues from the Libertarians’, as LP National Committee chair Nick Sarwark likes to say.

As far as the debates are concerned, it’s a game of coulda, woulda, shoulda, I admit-but if Johnson and Stanton had made the debate stage this year, it may have accelerated the LP’s growth exponentially, both nationally and statewide. But this LP crew is used to baby steps. It has been forced to do it this way for years, and it’ll keep doing it.

All I ask, after this monumental year for Libertarians … quit saying you don’t have options when there’s the massive Golden Torch of Liberty staring back at you, inviting you to take part. And let’s make sure this debate snub crap ends this year. To fix it, it takes a loud response from voters.

You have options, don’t forget that next time.


Libertarian Senate candidate Paul Stanton qualifies for three-way debate


For more information, contact:

Brian McLaughlin | Media Director – Committee to elect Paul Stanton

Email: |Twitter: @BrianMacWriter

DELAND, Fla. (Sept. 29, 2016): U.S. Senate candidate Paul Stanton learned Thursday he stands at 9 percent in the second PPP three-way poll released this month. According to the Oct. 26 debate criteria, this showing qualifies the Libertarian candidate to be on stage that night at Broward College in south Florida.

Stanton is running for incumbent Republican Marco Rubio’s seat in Florida, which is also being contested by Democrat Patrick Murphy and four other non-party affiliated candidates not included in Thursday’s poll. Stanton’s Thursday result follows his 10-percent showing earlier this month after his victory in Florida’s first statewide Libertarian primary.

PodiumStanton now awaits the official invitation to the Oct. 26 debate.

“I am pleased to see the message of peace and liberty is resonating with Florida voters,” Stanton said when hearing the news. “As it appears this poll meets the criteria set forth by Leadership Florida for the Oct. 26 debate, I am confident they will make the right decision and let Floridians hear from the three leading candidates.”

Thursday’s PPP poll broke down the results by age group, gender and race. With the Hispanic electorate, Stanton drew 18 percent of the 826 people polled—just 12 percent behind Rubio. In a sign that Stanton is pulling support from both establishment candidates, he nabbed 9% of registered Democrats and 6% of registered Republicans. He also polled at 15% with the all-important Independent/Other Party category.

With millennial voters (aged 18 to 29), Stanton’s results mirror Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson’s impressive numbers in that he is drawing 19 percent of those polled, while Rubio draws 29 percent and Murphy 28.

“Millennials grew up with their country at war and I think they are especially ready for a message of peace and liberty,” Stanton said after reviewing the numbers. “Unlike some of their parents, they are not held down by blind party loyalty.”

Rubio and Murphy both accepted debate invitations earlier this month to the Oct. 26 event at Broward College, which will be hosted by Leadership Florida and the Florida Press Association. The debate criteria states that a candidate must reach a 12.5-percent mark in an “independent, reputable poll of at least 815 likely Florida voters”, which Thursday’s poll fits. Margin of error is allowed to be factored in at a 3.5-percent clip—which qualifies Stanton.

The Stanton campaign has been in contact with representatives from both Leadership Florida and the Florida Press Association and is awaiting confirmation this poll can be used to qualify him for the October 26th debate against Rubio and Murphy.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Libertarian Candidate Paul Stanton Challenges Rubio To Senate Debates


For more information, contact:

Brian McLaughlin | Media Director – Committee to elect Paul Stanton

Email: Twitter: @BrianMacWriter

DELAND, Fla. (Sept. 19, 2016): Today, Libertarian U.S. Senate candidate Paul Stanton contacted the Marco Rubio campaign and challenged the incumbent Republican Senator to the six-debate proposal Democratic challenger Patrick Murphy has declined to fully participate in.

RELATED: Get to know Paul Stanton, Libertarian U.S. Senate candidate

Here is an excerpt from Stanton’s letter to Rubio, which you can read in its entirety by clicking on the PDF link to the right (paul-stanton-letter-to-rubio-sept19):

“I agree with you that transparency in the agendas of the candidates in this Senatorial race is of utmost importance, and that the best way to achieve this transparency is by multiple public debates.  In 2010, all three candidates for the U.S. Senate agreed that Floridians deserved six thoughtful debates.  This year, Floridians deserve no less.”

Stanton polled in the double-digits in the first three-way Public Policy Poll (PPP), which was released Sept. 7. The incumbent, Rubio, drew 40 percent, while Democrat challenger Murphy had 37 to Stanton’s 10, with 13 percent saying they were undecided about the Nov. 8 election.

RELATED: Paul Stanton’s BallotPedia page

So far, Rubio’s and Murphy’s camps have agreed to be on the same debate stage only twice-on Oct. 17 at UCF in Orlando and Oct. 26 at Broward College in Davie. The Oct. 26 debate has made its criteria and format public, making it possible for a candidate polling at 12.5%—with an accepted 3.5% margin of error—to be on the debate stage. The ‘accepted’ polling will be done independently in September and criteria must be met by Oct. 3, when invitations go out. In this scenario, if Stanton were to replicate his PPP showing, he would be invited thanks to the margin of error rule.

PPP pointed out Stanton’s solid start in its press release on Sept. 7:

“… one thing that’s particularly notable is that Libertarian Paul Stanton pulls 10% of the vote at this point. That’s a reflection of the choice Floridians face at this point. Rubio is not popular, with only 35% of voters approving of the job he’s doing to 45% who disapprove. But Murphy is relatively unknown with 47% of voters having no opinion about him one way or another … These are the conditions that can lead to a 3rd party candidate doing well and right now Stanton is benefiting from that dynamic.”

Stanton is coming off a victory in the first-ever statewide Libertarian primary in Florida, winning with 74 percent of the vote. He is a U.S. Army veteran who served in Iraq. Following his service, The DeLand native became an outspoken Libertarian activist and qualified for the ballot in June. The Libertarian Party is the third largest political party in the United States and the Libertarian presidential candidate, Gov. Gary Johnson, will be on the ballot in all 50 states. The LP is committed to free-market principles, civil rights, personal freedom, non-interventionism, less government intervention, peace and free trade.

Paul Stanton speaks during an August pre-primary Senatorial debate in Stuart (Fla.) which invited all candidates from all parties. Democrat ‘Rocky’ de La Fuente is to Stanton’s right. 

Libertarian U.S. Senate Candidate Paul Stanton Has Primary Election Day Agenda Set

Stanton at the U.S. Senate Open Debate on Aug. 11 in Stuart, Fla.


For more information, contact:
Brian McLaughlin | Committee to elect Paul Stanton
Twitter: @BrianMacWriter
DELAND, Fla. (Aug. 29, 2016): Libertarian U.S. Senate candidate Paul Stanton has his Tuesday primary plan squared away, and it will involve casting his vote early in his home county of Volusia, visiting a Libertarian voter hotbed and then watching the voting returns come in with supporters.
Stanton, a DeLand resident, will head to Pinellas County after his personal visit to the ballot box. In 2014, Pinellas County led the state in votes for Libertarian candidates in the races for Governor and Attorney General. Stanton will visit ‘Occupy the Primary’ volunteers from the Libertarian Party who plan to be at polling locations county wide to increase awareness of the party.
“The election is finally here, and we Libertarians have a choice in this historic primary,” Stanton said. “Vote for peace, liberty and personal empowerment … I have bold plans for lowering taxes, fighting poverty and ensuring peace.”
Following his visits to the polls, he will participate in an election returns watch party at Station House in St. Petersburg with a large contingent of supporters. Stanton is in an unprecedented Florida Libertarian primary with Augustus Invictus and according to the Libertarian National Committee, this year only three states held LP primaries for a U.S. Senate or House seat—Florida, Missouri (Senate seat) and Alaska (House seat).
Along with an endorsement from the current Libertarian presidential ticket of Gov. Gary Johnson and Gov. Bill Weld, Stanton also holds endorsements from seven Libertarian Party affiliates in Florida—Pinellas, Broward, Palm Beach, Collier, Santa Rosa, Volusia and Northwest Florida.
Republicans, Democrats and Libertarian candidates will go through primaries and Tuesday’s winners will proceed to the Nov. 8 general election. This year’s race for U.S. Senate includes incumbent Republican Marco Rubio and current Democratic frontrunners Patrick Murphy and Alan Grayson.

Paul Stanton is a U.S. Army veteran who served in Iraq, receiving his honorable discharge as a Sergeant. Following his service, he became an outspoken Libertarian activist. He currently resides in DeLand working in computer programming and data analytics. The Libertarian Party is the third largest political party in the United States and the Libertarian presidential candidate, Gov. Gary Johnson, will be on the ballot in all 50 states. The LP is committed to free-market principles, civil rights, personal freedom, non-interventionism, less government intervention, peace and free trade.

Florida House Candidate Steve Edmonds: Facts, Background And Links

SteveEdmonds-FamilyFULL NAME
: William Steven Edmonds, Jr.

RUNNING FOR: Florida House, Dist 28 (NPA)

AGE: 44 years old

FAMILY: Wife, Tracy … Son, Will

BORN: Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

HIGH SCHOOL: Martin County HS in Stuart, Fla.

COLLEGE: University of Central Florida (both Bachelor’s and Master’s).

CURRENT PROFESSION: Adjunct Professor at Eastern Florida State College, also at with Daytona State College. Teaches American National Government and State and Local Politics.

POLITICAL AND LEADERSHIP EXPERIENCE: Hired as a staffer for Pat Buchanan’s 1996 Presidential Campaign, working in key states and on ballot access; Campaign Manager for Libertarian Bill Wohlsifer for Florida Attorney General campaign in 2014; Oviedo Land Planning Agency (1999-2001); Seminole County National Lands Committee (2001); Elected to Seminole County Soil and Conservation District (2002-2006); candidate for Florida State Senate in 2010 (drew 33 percent; 50,478 votes); candidate for Seminole County school board 2006 (drew 32 percent).

HOBBIES: Spending time with his wife and son … Fishing in the near future on his 16’8″ Ranger boat … Escaping his land-locked existence in Oviedo every chance he gets … Surfing when the wave action is solid.

PRESIDENTIAL PREFERENCE: Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson: “I had a chance to play pool once with Gary Johnson for about four hours. It was an amazing experience to hang out with somebody who has a real chance of being President. I’ve been supporting him since 2014 and I voted for him in 2012.”

QUOTABLE: “One of the reasons I’m doing this is I want to show you can do this without a party and with not a lot of money … I’m trying to do this by example, purposefully. People should look into plugging themselves into the local community. It doesn’t have to be in government, it can be with a local charity or working with the local Babe Ruth baseball league. Any activity in your community is good. If you are a registered voter and a member of your community, you’re qualified to run for anything all the way up to U.S. Congress. It would be awesome to have fresh new faces in this. It definitely requires a lot of time commitment … but if you’re willing to go to 15 different meetings and knock on 150 doors a day to get name recognition, you do it.”


OFFICIAL CAMPAIGN PAGE: Steve Edmonds, Florida House District 28

TLI’S article on Steve Edmonds and the reason he became an activist and candidate

BallotPedia: Steve Edmonds, candidate for Florida House District 28

The Opt Out Florida Network: Questionnaire about Edmonds’ current campaign

LinkedIn page: Steve Edmonds Q-and-A with Steve Edmonds



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