Roger Stone Considers Run for Florida Governor

The National Review Online ran the following story about Roger Stone and his possible political future.

Roger Stone, an infamous political consultant, tells National Review Online that he will probably run for governor of Florida.

The former campaign adviser to Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan says he wants to run as a libertarian, third-party challenger to incumbent Republican governor Rick Scott and the Democratic nominee.

“I don’t have any illusions about winning, but I’d like to carry the flag for the liberty movement,” Stone says. “The Republican party is dead and it can’t be revived, so it’s time for the Libertarian party to be a force.”

Stone will make a final decision on a gubernatorial run by the end of the year. In the meantime, he’ll ask libertarian activists for their support.

You can read the rest of the article here .

Last week, IPR ran an article about another Libertarian running for governor in Florida, Adrian Wyllie. You can read about that here .

Mr. Stone is relatively new to the Libertarian Party.  Here’s an article from a year ago, in the Washington Post .

 Some unverified information about Mr. Stone can be found in this Wikipedia article .

80 thoughts on “Roger Stone Considers Run for Florida Governor

  1. Steven R Linnabary

    WR @ 2: At my age, I find myself doing that more frequently. It is always embarrassing.

    :-)

    PEACE

  2. Steven R Linnabary

    Color me cautiously optimistic. Cautious being the operative term. I’m the guy wearing the “I Don’t Care If He’s Dead, I Still Want To Impeach NIXON” t-shirt while Stone has Nixon tattooed on his back.

    After witnessing how few people remembered Bob Barr’s past (Libertarians for sure, but nonlibertarians in particular), a Roger Stone candidacy might be good for the LP.

    This NRO article is a pretty good start, exposing people to libertarian ideas in a very credible fashion. I look forward to more from him.

    It might be pointed out as well that whoever is the leading Libertarian gubernatorial vote getter will likely be a leading LP POTUS candidate going into 2016.

    PEACE

  3. Krzysztof Lesiak

    Warren, write your editorial :) I think we all know you’re not a big fan of Roger Stone, but then again, who is? I mean he was a GOP hitman and is about as much of a friend of liberty as Jesse “I’m for Mitch McConnell” Benton is. Actually, I’d probably even rank him lower than that. It’s a shame he was involved in any way with Gov. Johnson’s campaign.

  4. Jared King

    “The former campaign adviser to Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan says he wants to run as a libertarian…”

    Well he can run as a Libertarian if the party is foolish enough to have him, but he certainly can’t run as a libertarian.

    “The Republican party is dead and it can’t be revived, so it’s time for the Libertarian party to be a force.”

    Not like when they had people like Richard Nixon. And I thought Root was a jackass for calling himself a Reagan Libertarian. Now we have Nixon Libertarians. What’s next? Because I’m pretty sure you can’t get worse than that.

    Roger Stone’s reputation he’s proud of is being the sleaziest man in DC. I certainly don’t trust any libertarian that refuses to discuss foreign policy, and a quick visit to his Facebook page shows he still worships Nixon and Reagan.

    A big tent Libertarian Party is too big if he can run on the ticket.

  5. Oranje Mike

    Nixon and Reagan? Not a good resume at all. Unless he comes clean and admits both men were horrid, he’s not to be trusted.

  6. Phillip Dodge

    Current governor Rick Scott’s approval ratings are so low, last month Huff Post said the former governor Charlie Crist could win running as a Dem. Now that Crist’s bagman Jim Greer has plead guilty, Crist’s numbers are about to plummet. Nixon and Reagan were not advocating the legalization of marijuana but Roger Stone is along with promoting a number of forward thinking Libertarian ideals. He could bring nationwide publicity to the Libertarian Party. Let’s see what he has to say at his next appearance.

  7. Thomas L. Knapp

    “Current governor Rick Scott’s approval ratings are so low, last month Huff Post said the former governor Charlie Crist could win running as a Dem. Now that Crist’s bagman Jim Greer has plead guilty, Crist’s numbers are about to plummet.”

    It wasn’t just HuffPo saying that. It was, IIRC, Quinnipiac and PPP.

    And it wasn’t just Crist over Scott. It was Crist over Scott by 14 points, Alex Sink over Scott by seven points, and Scott with a 33-36% approval rating.

    Even if Crist comes apart at the seams, Scott is ass deep in alligator and planning to spend $100 million to turn 2014 into a real race.

    It seems like an election with a lot of openings for third party candidates to make gains …

    … or the LP could nominate a walking, talking, human-shaped pile of feces like Stone and pat itself on the back for pulling off yet another college fraternity stunt.

  8. Mike Kane

    What’s disappointing to me is that in all the articles they refer to him as a Nixon political operative. And there’s so little discussion of the LP itself.

  9. Mike Kane

    As I understand, there will be primary. No different than the R’s and D’s in the state of Florida.

    I’m not sure if you have to be registered L to vote in it, but regardless, I’d guess that Roger Stone would win on shear name recognition.

  10. Richard Winger

    If the libertarian movement, and/or the Libertarian Party, ever becomes very successful and powerful, it will be because people who had not been libertarian in the past changed their minds and became libertarian in the present. It is absolutely mindless for anyone to criticize any person because of that person’s past political views, if the person has changed toward liberty in recent times.

  11. Richard Winger

    Yes, only registered Libertarians can vote in a Florida Libertarian primary. Before 2007 the law required parties with fewer than 5% of the state registration to nominate by convention, but then the law was changed to require all parties to nominate by primary. We think Republicans in the legislature did this, hoping to then enter some Green Party nominees for the legislature in 2008. And indeed, five “faux” Greens filed in the Green Party primary for legislature in 2008, and went on to the November ballot because they were the only candidates who filed in the Green Party primary. Democrats suspected Republicans had paid their filing fees, and the tentative evidence did show that, but Democrats dropped their lawsuit over inaccurate campaign finance reports when the Greens, or some of them, simply fled the state and couldn’t be found. In any event, none of the “faux” Greens caused the Republican to win the general election; in all 5 cases one of the major party candidates got over 50% of the total vote so the Green candidate did not change the identity of the winner.

  12. William Windorf

    Roger Stone might have some detractors here at IPR (Do I detect some jealously?) Yet, I’m not convinced he will run as it will cost huge money and yield dubious results. Nevertheless, the Libertarians do not otherwise have any candidates in Florida that could even come close to Stone in political savvy, financial resources and national notoriety.

  13. Warren Redlich

    @11:
    “Roger Stone is along with promoting a number of forward thinking Libertarian ideals.”

    Is that so?

    “He could bring nationwide publicity to the Libertarian Party.”

    That is one of the promises he always makes, and rarely delivers.

    “Let’s see what he has to say at his next appearance.”

    By all means listen to his lies and decide how good they sound.

  14. Warren Redlich

    @15:
    “It is absolutely mindless for anyone to criticize any person because of that person’s past political views, if the person has changed toward liberty in recent times.”

    However, it is not mindless to question whether the turn toward liberty is genuine. And when the person in question continues to glorify non-libertarians and has a massive history of lies and dirty tricks (about which he brags), maybe common sense should intrude?

  15. Warren Redlich

    “Libertarians do not otherwise have any candidates in Florida that could even come close to Stone in political savvy, financial resources and national notoriety.”

    Political savvy = dirty tricks?

    Financial resources: From the guy who helped run the Johnson campaign into massive debt?

    National notoriety: Maybe we could get Chris Dorner.

  16. wredlich

    Would anyone be surprised that this is William Windorf’s only comments on IPR, and Phillip Dodge only has 2 comments, both supporting Stone.

    I smell troll.

  17. wredlich

    The aforementioned three trollish comments come from three different IP addresses. “Mr. Dodge” posted from two different IPs in different parts of the country.

    Two have been indicated as involved with spam comments by Project Honeypot.

    Trolling is a common tactic of the evil Stone.

  18. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    WW @ 17: “Do I detect some jealously?”

    This excuse always makes me laugh, as if any criticism is so invalid that we want to be like that person. Please, this isn’t high school.

  19. Dennis

    Was Roger Stone not the man who convinced Pat Buchanan to join the Reform Party—and then essentially discredited the organization and dismantled it from within?

  20. Adele Jeter

    Stone says he’s serious about a 2014 gubernatorial run and I believe him. The timing couldn’t be better for Stone to enter the race. A lot of allegations are coming out, so to speak, about Crist’s lying to the public about Jim Greer and fraud in fund raising. and Rick Scott is old news. Stone, with his track record of successful political campaigning, will give both Charlie Crist and Rick Scott a run for their money. I’d love to see a three-way debate.

  21. Mark Axinn

    @31. Not so sure what you mean by Stone’s “track record of successful political campaigning”.

    In 2010 in New York, he openly supported a third-party candidate who came in seventh out of seven candidates for Governor (Warren came in fourth), while simultaneously taking money from the Republican who lost by over 1,000,000 votes to Andrew Cuomo.

  22. Kevin Knedler

    Wise words from Mr. Richard Winger @ post # 15. That is why the Ohio LP is growing–25% in past 2 years via primary voter registration. I don’t like all the rules, but will play with them in order to compete, win, and then change the rules to MORE FREEDOM.

  23. Steven Berson

    @34 – any article describing the meltdown of the Reform Party that does not go into the John Hagelin / Natural Law versus Pat Buchanan / paleo-con schism – along with the Perot abandonment – is not seeing the whole picture imho. Sure – a sex scandal didn’t help – but there was a lot of other reasons for it that were likely more impacting.

  24. Dennis

    @38,
    Bingo. And he was pretending to help it; Buchanan and his legions arguably didn’t realize they were being used, at least not at first.

  25. Richard Winger

    According to the recent biography of Pat Buchanan, the person who single-handedly persuaded Pat to switch from running as a Republican, to seeking the Reform nomination, in the 2nd half of 1999, was Bay Buchanan.

  26. wredlich

    I’m done talking about Roger Stone and with the LP. All of you on IPR are free to continue discussing him in whatever way you choose.

    I will continue to support third parties in general, the ballot access movement, and this wonderful website and community you have all built. But I will have nothing to do with the LP.

  27. Thomas L. Knapp

    Warren @ 43,

    That seems like a strange attitude. The New York LP nominated you over Stone’s horse for governor, and has not yet nominated Stone for anything, anywhere. Why assume that they will?

  28. Andy

    “wredlich // Feb 13, 2013 at 1:03 am

    I’m done talking about Roger Stone and with the LP. All of you on IPR are free to continue discussing him in whatever way you choose.

    I will continue to support third parties in general, the ballot access movement, and this wonderful website and community you have all built. But I will have nothing to do with the LP.”

  29. Zapper

    @43 Hello, Warren. There’s a lot of infighting in the LP these days, so I understand the desire to just bow out. I feel the same way. However, I hope it isn’t Roger Stone driving you out. We need quality individuals such as yourself as LP members.

    Many disgusting characters will continue to try to weasel their way in, and as an open political organization we should generally be open and accept all newcomers and new converts. Then it’s up to all of us to vet them properly before we allow them to become or support them as candidates.

    Likewise, the insistence of some minarchists and anarchists to be the only true voice drives out those who are reasonable and rational. A successful, big-tent LP cannot be a dogmatic monolith nor a single-minded cult chanting in unison.

    The battles for power in places seen here lately: OR, PA, NV for example shows that the desire for power and prestige can also dominate the actions of some in leadership and drive members away – it’s a wonder we have any good people left with so many good reasons to quit.

    As our party grows larger – and despite the shrinking national active member/donor numbers we are acually growing larger – there will be competing factions. As a result, many members, donors and activists will only participate when their faction is in charge, or support their faction’s candidates. If we can do this in a civil manner, we can grow and thrive.

    Perhaps you might consider contacting and joining with LP members who are like minded and can assist and support candidates who can lead with a principled yet pragmatic and reasonable, step by step approach to Libertarian political change.

    I have great respect for you as a person. You were a great candidate for governor in New York and I was one of your supporters – I only wish I had done more since you came so close to the 50,000 votes.

    Sincerely,

    Z

  30. Eric Sundwall

    Historically, Warren is already associated with the LP, that can’t be retracted . . .

    He can certainly choose to take up with the murderous lot (the GOP) that made Stone’s career possible.

    Stone is just a desperate fool trying to live out some odd fantasy, I hope the Florida LP has more sense than to nominate him. But plenty of the ‘pragamatic and reasonable’ sorts will likely back him . . .

  31. Andy

    “wredlich // Feb 13, 2013 at 2:26 pm

    The LP would be just as murderous a lot of if it got power. Gary Johnson’s humanitarian wars, Bob Barr, Wayne Root, etc.”

    I do not think that it is fair to say this about everyone in the Libertarian Party.

    Would some sell out? Probably, but not everyone. Those who sold out would be LINO’s, Libertarians In Name Only.

  32. Benjamin Gay

    The Libertarian Party needs cohesion if it is to make any kind of difference in this country. Commenters that just make one ad hominum attack on Libertarians over and over do not serve to unite the party. Republicans who come in and slander Libertarians should be considered suspect.

  33. wredlich

    @49: “I do not think that it is fair to say this about everyone in the Libertarian Party.”

    Nor is it fair to say it about everyone in the GOP.

  34. wredlich

    @50 is another first-time comment from someone with that name, e-mail address and IP address.

    I think it might win an award for most artful trolling. :-) Except for misspelling hominem.

  35. Thomas L. Knapp

    Andy @49,

    “Would some sell out? Probably, but not everyone.”

    It doesn’t take everyone. In 2008 and 2012, it just took 50% + 1 of the delegates to the presidential nominating convention.

  36. Andy

    “wredlich // Feb 13, 2013 at 7:04 pm

    @49: “I do not think that it is fair to say this about everyone in the Libertarian Party.”

    Nor is it fair to say it about everyone in the GOP.”

    I think that it is a lot more true of the people in the Republican Party than it is for those in the Libertarian Party.

    Also, many of the stated principles of the Republican Party are bad. The Libertarian Party at least has the right set of principles.

  37. Andy

    “Nicholas Sarwark // Feb 13, 2013 at 9:40 pm

    @53: 2008 was a six-ballot squeaker that was as you describe, 2012 was a decisive first-ballot win.”

    Yeah, Gary Johnson won on the first ballot in Las Vegas with 70% of the vote.

  38. Q2Q

    If Roger Stone runs, he’ll win the nomination by a landslide. Adrian Wyllie is a joke who harasses cops about HIS lack of a driver’s license, plus his connections to some of the most dysfunctional elements in the LPF. I am a John Wayne Smith supporter, but even he’s willing to back out to clear the path for Roger Stone. Anybody But Adrian would be a good candidate.

  39. Nicholas Sarwark

    @58: Bullshit. If the convention wasn’t still skeptical in 2012 from the Barr debacle, Johnson would have gotten an even larger first ballot vote because he had more political experience and qualifications than any previous candidate for the nomination.

    The LP is still a political party and political parties nominate the candidate they think has the most chance of being successful and offends them the least. The LP has rejected high-profile candidates in the past, e.g. Howard Stern, Ann Coulter, when the offensiveness outweighed the chance of success.

    You are free to sit outside the LP and claim it’s in the midst of a degeneration, but that doesn’t make it true. I’ve been to all of the Presidential nominating conventions from 2000 on and there is an ebb and flow from rough but principled standard bearers to polished candidates and back again. Johnson’s campaign was an outlier, since nobody with that high of a profile has sought the nomination in the past.

    However, if people are upset enough about the opaque finances and/or Johnson decides he’s not willing to put the time or effort into campaigning when the LP vote ceiling is so relatively low, I’d predict we’ll be back to rough but principled standard bearer in 2016.

  40. Andy

    Nicholas Sarwark said: “The LP has rejected high-profile candidates in the past, e.g. Howard Stern, Ann Coulter, when the offensiveness outweighed the chance of success.”

    I know that the Libertarian Party of Connecticut rejected Ann Coulter as a candidate, and rightfully so, but I’m pretty sure that the Libertarian Party of New York did not reject Howard Stern as a candidate. Somebody correct me if I’m wrong, but I thought that Howard Stern changed his mind about running and dropped out of the race.

  41. Andy

    Another semi-celebrity candidate that got rejected was actor Sonny Landham. The Libertarian Party of Kentucky really dodged a bullet when they decided to drop him as a candidate. Man, that would have been a disaster.

  42. Andy

    Nicholas Sarwark said: “I’ve been to all of the Presidential nominating conventions from 2000 on and there is an ebb and flow from rough but principled standard bearers to polished candidates and back again.”

    I wouldn’t really classify Harry Browne as “rough.” He was pretty polished. Also, I don’t think that Gary Johnson raised that much more money than Harry Browne, particularly when you take inflation into account, and also when you consider that Harry Browne turned down any government matching funds he could have received while Gary Johnson took some matching funds from the government.

    Michael Badnarik was not “rough” as a speaker, but I suppose that he could be considered “rough” due to his lack of campaign funds and lack of personal wealth.

    I joined the LP in ’96, but 2000 in Anaheim was the first National Convention I attended.

  43. Thomas L. Knapp

    NS@59,

    “If the convention wasn’t still skeptical in 2012 from the Barr debacle, Johnson would have gotten an even larger first ballot vote because he had more political experience and qualifications than any previous candidate for the nomination.”

    “Qualification” is completely a matter of subjective valuation, and I can understand why many would value executive experience over legislative experience as “qualifications.”

    “Political experience” is a little less subjective and easier to quantify. Johnson had less time (eight years) in political office than Barr or Gravel, and all of Barr’s time in office (12 years) and most of Gravel’s time in office (15 years) was federal, not state.

    “I’ve been to all of the Presidential nominating conventions from 2000 on and there is an ebb and flow from rough but principled standard bearers to polished candidates and back again.”

    I can’t discern the trend you’re describing. I would describe Badnarik in 2004, not Johnson, as the outlier, and the trend having been otherwise solid since 1988.

  44. Wes Wagner

    TK @67

    There are people in this party that are under the delusion that you can change the system from within by nominating and electing people who are experienced successful politicians.

    The reality of expecting such change is inherently irrational. If these people were capable of becoming president, based on their experience, they would do it in their party of origin. If they can’t win there, they obviously can’t win as a Libertarian.

    Further, the concept that you are going to change the system from within is as rational as expecting to change your local mafia by starting as a front line grunt.

    If you think it is possible to fix government, who is the largest and “most legitimate” mafia, then I challenge you to start small like the reform caucus always says… don’t start out running for president… start a a front line grunt. Work your way up to godfather… and then once you are there, unilaterally declare that you want to cut extortion and murders by 50% and let utopia ensue.

  45. Mark Axinn

    New York results in 2010 (rounded):
    Andrew Cuomo 2,900,000
    Carl Paladino 1,550,000
    Howie Hawkins (Green) 60K
    Warren Redlich (Lib.) 48K
    Jimmy McMillen (Rent is too Damn High) 41K
    Charles Barron (called his party Freedom but he is one of the the most cold-blooded, racist commies you will ever meet) 24K
    Kristin Davis (Anti-Prohibition) 20K

  46. Mark Axinn

    New York LP nominated Howard Stern for Governor in 1994; he packed the nominating convention with 600 of his fans who all voted for him over the 60 or so true libertarians there that supported Jim Ostrowski, Norma Segal or another candidate. (I gave the nominating speech for Norma: “Make it legal, vote for Segal!”)

    Stern played with us for a few months until the joke got stale (one of his platforms was to ban the Puerto Rican Day parade) and then dropped out in July 2004. We replaced him with a great guy, Bob Schulz, who did very poorly at the polls that year but did win a very important case in federal court eliminating the requirement for nominating petitions to include assembly districts and election districts for all 15,000-plus signers.

    LPNY subsequently amended its bylaws to prevent a takeover again like what happened in ’94.

  47. Mark Axinn

    My wife and I were Harry Browne delegates at the 1996 Convention in DC.

    He was a total gentleman (we had a photo taken with him and his wife) and seemed very polished to me. He even looked like a President!

  48. Mark Axinn

    Correction on 70.

    I meant to say Stern dropped out in July 1994. He was the nominee for three months, not 10 years and three months!

    Oops.

  49. NewFederalist

    As I recall Stern dropped out because of financial disclosure rules he did not wish to follow. Either way, it was a mistake to nominate him.

  50. Mark Axinn

    I spoke with Stern’s lawyers throughout the spring of 1994. They knew about the disclosure laws from the start; it was just a convenient excuse for him to use when he tired of the big joke he was pulling at the LPNY’s expense.

    Yes, it was idiotic to nominate him. But, as I noted before, he packed the Convention with 600 fans. All they had to do was pay $15 for what they saw as a Howard Stern concert, and they were in and able to overwhelm the vote.

    We amended the bylaws thereafter to prevent a re-occurence. Now to vote at an April convention, one has to be a member as of the preceding Dec 31 as well.

  51. Starchild

    Roger Stone [ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roger_Stone ] reminds me of nobody more than former San Francisco mayor and California state assembly speaker Willie Brown [ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Willie_Brown_(politician) ], another famously savvy political operator, fashionable dresser and hedonist.

    Is it possible that Stone has turned over a new page, putting his love for Richard Nixon (the man whose statist policies, as president, largely inspired the creation of the Libertarian Party), his apparent willingness to bend the truth when convenient, and his penchant for political dirty tricks behind him?

    I suppose anything is possible. Perhaps Brown, now working as a member of the media, has embraced the journalistic ethos and closed the door on a political past full of corruption, nepotism, and machiavellian power plays.

    But I wouldn’t count on it in either case. Both men give the appearance of enjoying power and scheming a little too much.

    Libertarians tempted by the born-again political operative’s campaign skills would do well to bear in mind what Wikipedia reports to be one of his favorite sayings, which suggests he is also a skilled dissembler:

    “Unless you can fake sincerity, you’ll get nowhere in this business.” Caveat emptor!

    If Stone has truly parted ways with the GOP and is no longer playing for the statist team, that’s a relief, but he is nevertheless the kind of player the LP just might be wise to keep on the bench.

  52. NewFederalist

    “If Stone has truly parted ways with the GOP and is no longer playing for the statist team, that’s a relief, but he is nevertheless the kind of player the LP just might be wise to keep on the bench.”

    …or in a “gated community” ;) !

  53. Wes Wagner

    There is only one person you can trust if you want to have a successful libertarian party … if you see someone who when handed a mote of power their first knee-jerk reaction is to destroy it — and if they can’t to simply horde it for the sole purpose of denying it to others — you might have someone you can work with.

    I have run into only a handful.

  54. Nicholas

    Here at the local LP of Bucks County we welcome all. We have speakers ranging from Green, GOP, Dem, Indpendant, and LP at our meetings. We hope to build a base here to reach out and teach others in a friendly manner. We see to much infighting in the LPPA so we are now forging a new way locally that doesnt judge on past political belifes.

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