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Wayne Root leaves Libertarian Party, backs Romney

Posted: September 13, 2012 at 4:45 pm   /   by

Wayne Allen Root is talking sense:

Wayne Allyn Root, 2008 Libertarian Party’s Vice Presidential nominee and political commentator, resigned this morning from the Libertarian National Committee (LNC) to, according to his resignation letter, “elect good people and change the direction of this country outside of a third party.”

In the letter to the LNC, which is available at Independent Political Report, Root explains that his decision much is not unlike those of previous Libertarian Party presidential candidates, including Ron Paul and David Koch; both of whom left the LP to become prominent Republicans.

When I asked if he was now backing Mitt Romney, Root responded, “I am,” adding, “I don’t deny that Romney and Ryan aren’t libertarians, but Romney is a pro-business capitalist and Obama is a Marxist-socialist.”

People who assail “lesser-of-two-evils” voting confuse me. If you don’t vote for the lesser of two evils, and if, by that vote, the greater of two evils is helped to win, then haven’t you aided the greater of two evils? It would be one thing if third-party candidates had a prayer, but they do not. The only time that third-party candidates have a chance is when there is no candidate from one of the two main parties. In other words, a race where, for example, the candidates are a Democrat and Libertarian, with no Republican. Only in rare circumstances do third-party candidates win in contests higher than school board or state-level posts. Usually, they either do nothing but create statistical noise, or they act as spoilers.

At the presidential level, the illustrations could not be more stark. A recent example: Without Ralph Nader, Al Gore would have his name on a presidential library in Tennessee. But the biggest, most striking example comes in two very big, very powerful words:

Teddy Roosevelt.

Here you have a man whose giant granite face is carved into the side of a mountain in South Dakota. He was an exceptionally popular president. And yet, when he tried to run on a third-party ticket, he lost, and lost big. Yes, he beat out Taft due to his exceptional popularity, but he still lost. And by splitting up the Republican vote and party, he helped give the nation our first proto-fascist president. That’s what third parties do: they lose, and sometimes the cause the person whose ideology is furthest from theirs to win. That’s it. This isn’t a knock on the ideology of any particular third party, it’s just a fact.

Kudos to Root—and for that matter, Ron Paul and others—for figuring that out. If libertarians want a voice, the place to have it is within the GOP. Get in there and make the GOP more libertarian!

Christopher Cook

Christopher Cook

Managing Editor at Western Free Press
Christopher Cook is a writer, editor, and political commentator. He is the president of Castleraine, Inc., a consulting firm providing a diverse array of services to corporate, public policy, and not-for-profit clients.

Ardently devoted to the cause of human freedom, he has worked at the confluence of politics, activism, and public policy for more than a decade. He co-wrote a ten-part series of video shorts on economics, and has film credits as a researcher on 11 political documentaries, including Citizens United's notorious film on Hillary Clinton that became the subject of a landmark Supreme Court decision. He is the founder of several activist endeavors, including (now a part of Western Free Press) and He is currently the managing editor of and principal contributor to
Christopher Cook


  1. p says:

    You are assuming that one of the two evils is lesser. I see no evidence of that. I’m far too different from the Republicans to be one. On many issues they are worse than Democrats (social issues and foreign policy for example). On economic issues they may sound slightly better but in practice are about the same. For that matter Democrats also fail to deliver on the issues where they sound slightly better than Republicans. Both are getting worse and worse. And Ron Paul got completely dissed and dismissed by the Republicans. He has now once again quit their party. Even in his case, he is more conservative on some issues – abortion, immigration, gay marriage – unlike many libertarians such as myself. We would by no means be welcome in the Republican Party any more than the Democrats.  

    1. @p  Dissing Ron Paul was a pointless mistake—very unfortunate. You are describing one kind of libertarian, sort of a “fiscal conservative/social liberal” stance. There are other libertarian schools on some of the issues you mention, though, ones that would find a larger gap in acceptability btwn Obama and Romney. (Andrew Napolitano and Ron Paul are pro-life, for example)

Wayne Root leaves Libertarian Party, backs Romney