Wayne Root requested that the following be posted on IPR:
Yesterday, I appeared on the Bill Cunningham Show and overall it went very well. However, some people are making unfounded claims that I endorsed Mitt Romney for President based on a couple of sentences where I did not express myself as clearly as I should have.
Let’s start with the exact transcript of what I said:
“I, I think the important thing now is to make sure Obama is not elected, and, and that means, in my mind, I mean I would, listen, I’d love if a Libertarian like Gary Johnson, the two-term governor of New Mexico, would actually get elected President, but I think we all know that’s not going to happen, so therefore it’s gotta be Romney, there’s no choice, and then unfortunately, the good news is Romney stops Obamacare I hope, and, I hope, and stops, you know, the incredible bankruptcy of America and the looting of taxpayers a, a little bit, slows it down so we don’t go right off a cliff, but unfortunately Bill I don’t have a lot of hope that he turns this around and saves America, cause to me he seems like a big government north-east liberal compared to Obama who’s a Marxist, so I mean between those two choices, yeah, I guess the lesser of the two evils is certainly Romney but they’re both bad choices, and that’s the problem I have, it’s big government guys on both sides.”
As a political commentator and pundit, I opine on many issues, make predictions, and break down the differences in political races. When one frequently provides rapid-fire commentary in the media over a period of years, once in a while you’d like to reword a sentence or two. This is one of those times.
The point I was trying to make – but perhaps not clearly enough to the host’s conservative audience – is that if the only choice were Obama versus Romney, Romney would be the better choice between two horrible options. It’s clear to me as a businessman that Obama’s economic choices and record are the worst in modern history. But there is another and better choice for the American people. Gary Johnson is the third choice – and he’s a perfect choice. His record is far superior to both Obama and Romney.
In my role as a political commentator, I’m asked hundreds of times a year to analyze races involving Republicans vs. Democrats. I do. But my personal choice is always a true principled Libertarian – because only libertarians embrace our philosophy of economic and personal freedom, and truly want to dramatically cut the size of government. My sincere hope is that our party’s candidates will win every election. Alas, it happens far too infrequently.
My realistic prediction in mainstream media appearances – where little opportunity is allowed for proselytizing and the underlying question is always “Republican or Democrat and why?” – is that the voters are going to pick Romney over Obama. But my hope is that voters will be exposed to a true libertarian like Gary Johnson who in eight years as Governor of New Mexico never allowed spending or taxes to rise and who vetoed more bills than all other Governors in America – combined! It would be a shame if the choice will be once again limited to bigger government or much bigger government – America needs much smaller government.
For the past four years, I’ve done thousands of media interviews as a former Libertarian Vice Presidential nominee, political commentator and columnist. The objective of this hard work is to fight big government and big-government politicians, and to point out that the Libertarian Party is the positive alternative to the two major parties, with both of them too often fighting for bigger government, reductions in freedom, and less individual choice.
Obviously I do not endorse Romney or urge people to vote for him. I support Gary Johnson for President. I am a fan of his, and I spent months urging him to run for the Libertarian Party’s Presidential nomination. I will proudly vote for Gary Johnson in November.
I will be writing commentaries and appearing in the media enthusiastically explaining “the Gary Johnson difference.” I’ve already gotten Bill Cunningham to schedule another interview next week on the biggest show in Ohio to explain why Gary Johnson is the best possible choice for President.
That’s called turning lemons into lemonade – getting Gary Johnson and the Libertarian Party a big dose of publicity – all because of my miscommunication!
Even if Gary doesn’t get elected this year, I think he can have a huge impact on the November elections and propel the Libertarian Party forward. A large and growing portion of the public is sick and tired of having to choose between a big-government Republican and a much bigger-government Democrat. Gary Johnson can speak to those angry and frustrated Americans and offer them a real choice – a Libertarian choice.
That is always my choice, even if the mainstream media is only interested in my analysis and prediction of a two-party race. I support the Libertarian difference – both economic and personal freedom. Something rarely found in the two-party system or candidates.
I’ve had countless media appearances over the past several years, and I can’t be perfect every time. Talk show hosts and audiences love to discuss the two-party horse-race aspect of elections, and I’m happy to oblige since that’s my profession. But in the end, Libertarian is my personal choice – and it will hopefully one day be the choice of all Americans. I do apologize for any confusion my words caused.
Keep in mind that when someone is willing to sacrifice thousands of hours, and do thousands of interviews, anticipate that there will always be a few words that are offensive to some. It’s a delicate balancing act I perform on a daily basis. And this is an art, not science. Someone’s got to do it. I’ve built a big platform. I’m willing to take the slings and arrows. I hope an occasional misstatement is forgiven. My heart is always in the right place – fighting passionately and enthusiastically for smaller government, economic and personal freedom, and increased liberty for all of us.