WASHINGTON – The Libertarian Party will hold the National Libertarian Convention at the Red Rock Resort in Las Vegas, Nev., from May 3rd through May 6th to select the Presidential and Vice Presidential nominees, adopt any changes to the platform and choose top party officials.
The convention, themed Liberty Will Win, coincides with the 40th anniversary of the party, which is celebrated by Libertarians across the country. Between 600 and 700 delegates from all parts of the country are expected to take part. The keynote address “Big Government is the Disease; Voting Libertarian Is the Only Cure” will be delivered at 9:30 A.M. on Thursday, May 3rd by Michael Cloud, a veteran party strategist and communications expert.
"The problem is not the abuse of power ... it's the power to abuse. Take away the power and no abuse is possible," Mr. Cloud will say, according to the text of his prepared remarks.
Mark Hinkle, Libertarian Party Chair, said he anticipated one of the most exciting conventions ever.
“We have strong candidates -- and a growing number of independents, Tea Party faithful, disaffected Republicans, and anti-war, anti-crony-capitalism Democrats looking to us to field true liberty candidates,” Mr. Hinkle said. “We’re the small government alternative to Big Government Democrats and Republicans, which resonates with millions of voters who are deeply concerned with our weak economy and who fear it will get worse.”
The Libertarian Party’s nominating process differs significantly from that of the Republican and Democratic Parties.
Both the Presidential and Vice Presidential nominees are elected at the convention through independent voting processes starting with the presidential nomination. The Presidential nominee does not choose his or her running mate.
The first round of balloting will begin after the opening of the convention on Thursday, May 3rd and close at 3:00 P.M. on Friday, May 4th when delegates will choose participants of a nationally-televised Presidential debate that will take place on Friday, May 4th from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm. Those included in the debate will be announced by 3:30 P.M. on May 4th. Only candidates scoring 10 percent of the ballot or more will be allowed to take part.
This year’s contenders for appearing on the stage include, in reverse alphabetical order, writer, Libertarian activist, and Air Force veteran R. Lee Wrights, documentary producer Bill Still, attorney and Army veteran Carl Person, computer programmer Scott Keller, former New Mexico Governor and businessman Gary Johnson, and Libertarian activist and Marine veteran Jim Burns.
Party rules call for selecting the nominees after the debate through several rounds of balloting. If no candidate for President or Vice President attains a majority on the first ballot, the candidate finishing last will be eliminated from the race. In addition, any candidate polling less than 5 percent will also be eliminated from the subsequent ballot. A candidate securing a majority of convention delegates will be the nominee.
“We have an impressive roster of talent this year to challenge our Big Government opponents not only in the race for the White House, but also in state and local races,” noted Mr. Hinkle. “The major parties offer Americans only one solution: Bigger government. Libertarians will show voters how we can make government small while dramatically increasing jobs, lowering taxes, and scaling back government debt.”
The Libertarian Party is the third largest political party in the United States, which is active in all 50 states and has more than 250,000 registered voters.
Libertarians call for ending government interference in personal, family and business decisions, much lower government spending, repeal of dangerous and unnecessary regulations, lower taxes, a currency free of government manipulation, free trade, and a peaceful, non-interventionist foreign policy.
Millions of Americans have voted for Libertarian Party candidates in past elections throughout the country, despite the fact that many state governments place roadblocks in order to keep third party candidates off the ballot and deprive voters of a real choice.
Additional information about the 2012 Libertarian National Convention can be found at www.LibertyWillWin.com. Additional information about the Libertarian Party can be found at www.LP.org.