Think Freely Media presents Common Sense with Paul Jacob

If This Be Blackmail. . .

The Republican Party now boasts of more positions of power than . . . ever? And yet the GOP is in danger of falling apart.

The Democrats, now forced to endure Hillary Clinton’s new absurdity, What Happened, appear at wits’ end. They just do not “get it.”

Alas, “not getting it” is not limited to the major parties. The Libertarian Party (which is my subject this week) has been around since 1972 . . . doing the same things over and over . . . with spectacular lack of electoral success.*

Sure, the party has had no small subtle influence — perhaps most notably the change in marijuana policies. Yet it could have even more. Without electing anybody, as I argued yesterday.

But that’s just the tip of the Titanic-killer.

Not only could party organizers threaten the major parties with running — and taking away votes — based on their candidates’ positions, Libertarian organizers could also threaten to run against candidates who will not publicly take up the cause of electoral reform.

Particularly, ranked choice voting.

Because of our first-past-the-post elections, Libertarians tend to take away votes from those most similar to themselves. With ranked choice voting (see a sample ballot), a voter whose favorite is a Libertarian will have his second-favorite choice count** towards that candidate; minor party candidates would no longer work as spoilers.

And that would allow voters to embrace their real preferences, not pretend to like candidates they actually distrust.

Since major party candidates would, in most circumstances, be hurt less by those closest to them, they should be willing to be “blackmailed” on this.

Jumping into the briar patch of supporting fresh reform to stop the spoilers.

This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.


*  The 3 million odd votes for the Johnson/Weld presidential ticket, though a leap ahead from previous outings, was seen by many as a disappointment: that’s all the dynamic duo of former governors could do in a year with the unpopular duo of Trump and Clinton as R and D standard-bearers?

** That is, in cases where only a small percentage of the vote favors the Libertarian most.

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By: CS Admin


  1. What is that ballot pictured above, and what year?

  2. Steven Sass says:

    How about an easier and even more logical first step — IF YOU CAN NOT ELECTIONEAR WITHIN 100 YARDS OF POLL why not BAN the use of PARTY NAME ON THE BALLOT! If you do not know your candidate, why should you be allowed to ‘cheat’ by voting for the party!

  3. JFB says:

    Ranked choice is an option, but the entire US governmental process has evolved to effectively require a two party system.
    What appears to be occurring is a reformation within both the Republican and Democratic Parties, I suspect they will retain their labels but evolve in their platforms. This has the “establishment” in both in significant disarray and fighting the changes which will prevail regardless.
    The Republican must go libertarian, becoming classically liberal on social and cultural issues. The Democrats are trending socialist and will have to deal with the abject failure that litter history wherever that was previously attempted. Both will have to recognize the impossibility of being the self-appointed world policeman.
    Reformation is required of both because neither can control their urge to spend the next generation’s money. Things are changing, as the “young” are waking up to the fact the “free lunches” are all on their Mastercard statement and the old are not going to be around to have the bill reassessed to them.

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