Austin Petersen: A Libertarian Alternative for 2016

May 2, 2016—Patrick Henry famously said, “Support the one that supports liberty.” This has become an increasingly difficult thing to do given the front runners of both major parties seem to despise liberty.

In a recent interview, Donald Trump was asked, “What are the three most important functions of the federal government?” and he responded, “the greatest function of all by far is security for our nation. I would also say health care, I would also say education.”

Mr. Trump actually pulled that third one straight from the Communist Manifesto. On the other side of the coin, Democratic front runner Hillary Clinton was unable to answer a straight forward question from a liberal pundit: “What’s the difference between a socialist and a Democrat?”

So the two most likely candidates for running our republic quote the Communist Manifesto and can’t tell the difference between themselves and a socialist. Neither Trump nor Clinton cite the Constitution, discuss the powers delegated and not delegated to them by Article II, and neither candidate speaks of individual freedom or personal responsibility.

In modern American politics, true personal liberty and individual freedom are rarely discussed. So at the first ever nationally televised Libertarian Party debate, Austin Petersen was a breath a fresh air. From quoting Calvin Coolidge to reminding the debate moderator that it’s not the job of the president to write legislation, that’s for Congress. I know that’s extremely elementary, but the idea that a president’s power is limited by the Constitution seems foreign to both Trump and Clinton.

Rarely does a candidate come along that truly understands what liberty means. Rarely is there a candidate that defends libertarian ideas like the non-aggression principle, self-ownership, and real limited government, meaning governing within the confines of the Constitution.

In a recent interview with Dana Loesch, Petersen received attention when he said, “Allow legally married gay couples to protect their marijuana fields with fully automatic machine guns.” Petersen’s quote shows that he gets it. He has been around the liberty movement since 2008, he has worked as an associate producer for libertarian icon Judge Napolitano as well as Freedomworks and the Libertarian National Committee. He also founded the Libertarian Republic and is the CEO of Stonegait LLC, a consulting firm that provides photo and video services. Despite being about half her age, Petersen has made far more contributions to the private sector than Hillary Clinton ever has.

According to a Gallup poll taken earlier in 2016, only 26% of people polled identified as Republicans and only 29% identified as Democrats. The American people are demanding a change, asking for an anti-establishment candidate that can shake things up. Petersen’s brash style and classical liberal positions put him in stark contrast to the other candidates and gives voters an attractive alternative that they can rally around.

Petersen is pro-life, which includes abolishing the death penalty.

The two traditional parties are floundering and the two likely presidential candidates have negative ratings that are unmatched in recent history. American voters are searching for an alternative, with the wave that was started by Ron Paul and Rand Paul and the need for a third party. The libertarian moment is now, and libertarians have a young charismatic candidate that can unite libertarians, conservatives and reasonable liberals.

A candidate that understands libertarian principles and has a knack for communicating it, Petersen has supported abolishing the current tax code and offers an alternative to the progressive tax plans of Clinton and Trump, which punish success and stagger financial growth. Instead, he has advocated for voluntary taxes like lotteries and tolls.

Petersen has advocated for cutting every dime of foreign aid, ending the federal War on Drugs, and he fully understands the importance of the Second Amendment, vowing to repeal the National Firearms Act. He received a round of applause at the Libertarian debate when he said, “the Second Amendment isn’t for hunting it’s to shoot at tyrants if government becomes tyrannical.”

Petersen stands firm in his support of civil liberties and reigning in the NSA as well as economic freedom by lifting heavy regulations and occupational licenses and fees that restrict Americans from pursuing their passions.

Hillary Clinton once said, “We are going to take things away from you on behalf of the common good.” Donald Trump’s campaign motto is “Make America Great Again.”

Both candidates are completely off the mark. Hillary’s quote is what has led to the collapse of every socialist country that completely undermined personal freedom and private property rights. Donald Trump’s campaign motto implies that it’s government or politicians that make America great, but if this were true, then that politician could go to any country in the world and “make” that country great. No, Mr. Trump America is great, because we the people make it great, we have upheld the greatest Constitution in the history of the world and have innovated the greatest inventions that world has ever known, and none of it has to do with government making us great.

America is greatest when she is left alone and is free. Austin Petersen runs on a motto taking over the government, to leave everyone alone. By electing the only true liberty candidate in 2016, we the people can make America greater than it’s ever been before.

Would you vote for Austin Petersen? Comment below!

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