Friday, May 4, 2012

Slate interview: Gary Johnson on Obama's weakness, and where he might pick up a state

Slate interviews Libertarian Presidential candidate Gary Johnson at the LP convention.

Some great Johnson quotes:

On where he will get his votes
“I really believe I’m gonna take it from Obama rather than Romney. I joke, you know—maybe all those pot-smoking, marriage equality, get out of Afghanistan voters for Romney are going to switch to me. Then, boy, he’ll be in trouble!”
On where he will run the strongest, perhaps hopes to capture a state:

“I think at this point there are a few libertarian states,” says Johnson. “New Mexico might actually be in play. That’s a possibility. Wyoming. Montana. Nevada. Alaska. I’m thinking in terms of electoral votes. Those are states where we might actually win a three-way race.”
On President Obama's weakness this time around:

“Well, if you go back to 2008, Obama was the messiah to a lot of people,” says Johnson “Now you’ve got 80 percent of people saying they’d vote for a third party candidate. Do I make a difference? I don’t know, I don’t know. But being on the ballot in all 50 states, being in the game—wow! At some point, collectively, the country has to say, is there anyone else in this race? And I hope the answer they hear is, ‘yes, Libertarian Gary Johnson.’ ”
On the drug war:

“Something I’ve argued since I’ve really stepped out on this issue is, the pusher, the seller of drugs is really misunderstood. The seller of drugs is somebody who was the user, who’s now thrust into the selling role because the person ahead of them got arrested, sent to jail. This is why I’ve espoused decriminalization. Imagine the thought process: It’s OK to possess it, it’s OK to use it, so now, with impunity, you can go out and say ‘hey, Joey, wanna buy some pot?’ ” To make his point, Johnson affects a raspy Ratso Rizzo voice. “Well, Joey goes to jail, and you get your pot. That doesn’t solve the problem. Obama doesn’t solve the problem by going after the suppliers.”
Is there anyone else in the race?  Yes, finally we're getting a third choice that people might actually get to see and hear from.

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