Gary Johnson Grassroots Blog

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

PPP Poll: Obama's NM Approval at 50%, "Dark Horse" Gary Johnson Fares Best Among GOP Possibles

"New Mexico's former governor Gary Johnson actually does better against Obama than Romney

... one GOP candidate who is an asterisk in national polling actually comes closer to Obama than he [Romney] does- the state's former Governor Gary Johnson who trails by only 3 points at 46-43. Although Obama leads the rest of the Republican candidates by 16-26 points with independents, Johnson actually tops the President with that voter group at 46-37. He also picks up more than 20% of the Democratic vote.

... Johnson's unusually popular for a Republican...with voters who aren't Republicans...his problem is the primary voters who hold the key to the nomination. Numbers we'll release tomorrow show he's not doing terribly well on that front even in his home state.

What PPP's poll shows is Gary Johnson has the best chance against Obama when voters get to know him, his honesty, his integrity, and his record.

His issue is winning the primary, but if the media starts giving him the coverage he deserves and covers him as the candidate with the best chance to beat Obama, then Republican voters will start paying attention and voting for him.

[Note: PPP conducted a similar poll in early February prior to Johnson declaring his candidacy, and Johnson was trailing Obama by 15 pts (51-36)]

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Could Gary Johnson Beat Obama?

Gary Johnson may just be the one GOP candidate who has the best chance of unseating Obama in 2012 if he can make it successfully through the Republican primaries, which in and of itself will be a daunting task.

While the former NM Governor currently suffers from low name recognition and is considered by many to be Ron Paul-lite, when you look at his positions on abortion, immigration, gay rights, drugs and war; all social issues which are important to many Independents and center-left Democrats, Gary Johnson not only has the cross-over appeal that the other GOP candidates lack but he has the current occupant of the White House beat as well.

He is also a fiscal warrior when it comes to spending, as his record during his two terms as Governor bears out. While in office he cut taxes 14 times, vetoed 750 spending bills from the Democrat controlled legislature, balanced the budget, left the state with a budget surplus, cut 1,200 state jobs and created 20,000 private sector jobs. How many of his opponents can boast of that?

As you can see, getting the economy back on track is right in the Governor's wheel-house and that plays particularly well to the Tea Party along with Independents who are concerned about our mounting government debt.

The tough part will be getting through the primaries for Johnson since his social positions may not sit particularly well with conservatives. He too will have a tougher time wooing the libertarian wing of the GOP away from Ron Paul, who has that group firmly in his camp.

But these are challenges that Gary Johnson welcomes and has overcome in the past. As a political neophyte in the Governor's race in 1994 he was told by NM GOP party operatives that he had no chance of winning the Republican nomination, let alone beating the Democratic incumbent. We know how that turned out.

What we have in Gary Johnson is a candidate that does not fit in perfectly with any one particular voting bloc but appeals to a broader group of Americans; whether they are Republicans, Democrats or Independents, who are weary of partisan politics (really politics in general) and want to see real change.

At the end of the day what we need in the POTUS is someone who has the best interest of the American people at heart and will not pander to one particular bloc or party but will return us to the limited government, personal liberty ideals that this republic is founded on. What we need is a candidate that speaks for all of the American people and will not be co-opted or maintain the status quo.

That candidate is Gary Johnson.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

(Video) Gary Johnson FOX's On Your World w/Neil Cavuto 6/22/11


Benzinga Radio: Governor Gary Johnson Talks Reform Platform For Presidential Run

Benzinga Radio

Matthew Boesler of Benzinger Radio had the opportunity this past week to speak with former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson on his decision to run for the Republican nomination in the 2012 presidential election. They talked about some of Governor Johnson's key platforms, such as his plans for fixing the economy and making the country's health care system sustainable. He also decided to throw in some discussion of Dodd-Frank and campaign finance for good measure. Here is what Governor Johnson had to say.
On why he's running for president:

"I find myself outraged over the fact that we are bankrupt. I think the biggest issue facing this country right now is that we are on the verge of a financial collapse. It's going to be the bond market that collapses, because there is no paying $14 trillion in debt given the $1.65 trillion deficit, this year, last year, the year before, and the years going forward. We need to balance the budget, and I'm proposing a balanced budget for the year 2013."

On taxes:

"When it comes to jobs in this country, I am proposing eliminating the federal corporate income tax, believing that would reestablish this country as the only place to start up, grow, and nurture a business."

"It's a double tax. We as individuals own the corporations. When that money gets distributed to you and I, that's when that money gets taxed."

"I would also be advocating eliminating the income tax, eliminating the IRS, and replacing that with a fair tax, which by all accounts free-market economists believe a fair tax would be just that, a fair tax. Everyone would pay their fair share and it would absolutely promote savings by doing that."

"The consumption tax that's being proposed is approximately 20% as a value-added tax that would replace all other taxes--with the exception of property tax--and that would get applied to everything it is that we purchase. By doing that, it would be fair because everybody would pay their share of that. There is also a component built in to the fair tax proposal that would exclude you from paying that tax if you didn't have a certain threshold level of income. For the most part, everyone would pay this tax and it would very much promote savings because that would be the difference between what you earned and consumption."

On spending:

"I would be proposing cutting spending by 43%, that being the amount of money that we are currently printing and borrowing. I would start off by talking about Medicaid, Medicare, and military spending, those being really the big three."

"Social Security would really be reforming Social Security; it wouldn't be about cutting Social Security. Without raising taxes, we could make Social Security solvent into the future by raising the retirement age, having a means testing--there being all sorts of options available in the means testing area--and then changing the escalator built into Social Security from the wage index to the inflation rate, which in and of itself would make Social Security solvent into the future."

On health care:

"For Medicare and Medicaid, the federal government should block-grant the states a fixed amount of money--43% less than what we're currently spending--to give health care to the poor and those over 65 to the state. Fifty laboratories of best practice, fifty laboratories of doing things in a better way. I am believing that there would be best practices. We're all very competitive; we would emulate the best practices. There would be failure. We would do everything we could to avoid the failure."

"The reform to health care needs to be free-market reform. I think that health care in this country is as far removed from the free market as it possibly could be."

"Why should there even be insurance in a health care system that was absolutely free-market driven? I would argue that 40% plus of health care right now is bureaucratic, that it doesn't need to exist. I would suggest that within health care, all sorts of tests and procedures are being mandated from a liability standpoint, not from a cost-benefit standpoint. Really, you're talking about fundamental change in how we purchase insurance, which would be you and I going out and shopping for what it is that we need and want, coupled with the marketplace delivering what we need and want in more cost-effective ways."

"I would hope [to see the health insurance industry marginalized]. The notion that we have insurance to cover ourselves for ongoing medical coverage flies in the face of cost effectiveness. It would be analogous to having grocery insurance. We don't buy grocery insurance because, number one, why would anyone sell us grocery insurance? If we had it, you would go to the grocery store and there wouldn't even be prices advertised because you and I wouldn't pay for groceries--grocery insurance would. Why would we buy ground round when we could by filets, because we don't pay for it, grocery insurance does?"

Read the rest of the interview here

The audio version of the interview can be found here

(Video) Gary Johnson On CNN’s John King USA 6/24/11


The Daily Caller - Gary Johnson: "I Didn’t Create A Single Job"

The Daily Caller
Presidential candidate Gary Johnson took a slightly unorthodox approach regarding job creation on Thursday. “I didn’t create a single job,” said the former Governor of New Mexico.

His statement came in response to a National Review article that complimented Johnson on his record as governor, saying that when compared to the other governors running for president, the rate of job growth was highest under his watch.

“Don’t get me wrong,” Johnson said in a statement. “We are proud of this distinction. We had a 11.6 percent job growth that occurred during our two terms in office. But the headlines that accompanied that report – referring to governors, including me, as ‘job creators’ – were just wrong.”

“The fact is, I can unequivocally say that I did not create a single job while I was governor,” Johnson added. Instead, “we kept government in check, the budget balanced, and the path to growth clear of unnecessary regulatory obstacles.”

He went on to stress the positive impact government non-intervention had on job growth in New Mexico.

(Supporters make ‘idiot’s guide’ video proving Johnson’s worth to CNN)

“My priority was to get government out of the way, keep it out of the way, and allow hard-working New Mexicans, entrepreneurs and businesses to fulfill their potential,” he said. “That’s how government can encourage job growth, and that’s what government needs to do today.”

Johnson was one of the first candidates to officially enter the race for president. Considered to be a very libertarian-leaning Republican, Johnson’s platform includes a push for drug legalization in the United States.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Gary Johnson: Overcoming The Odds In New Hampshire

By Gary Johnson

I keep telling people I’m putting my chips on the table in New Hampshire.  Well, the idea of this blog is that I want to show everybody what that actually looks like and feels like.  My last two visits to New Hampshire have been amazing, and they leave me more optimistic than ever that this campaign is about to take off in a big way.

These photos are from the M/S Mount Washington Cruise on Lake Winnepesaukee hosted by the Belknap County Republicans.  It was a beautiful evening, and the conversations I had with voters were fantastic.
Talk Radio Host David Webb introduces me to the crowd aboard the M/S Mount Washington.
Despite being on a cruise, the crowd listened attentively.
As was reported in the New Hampshire Union-Leader, my speech received the loudest applause of the night!

As I’ve said many times, I never thought for a second that I’d be excluded from the debate table, but yes, it actually happened.  It was a tough pill to swallow, but I was back in New Hampshire the day following the debate for meetings with two editorial boards: the Union-Leader and Foster’s Daily Democrat.  Both published articles following the interviews (Union-Leader article, Foster’s article).

After that it was off to the Nesmith Library in Windham where Travis Blais, chair of the Windham Republican Committee, introduced me to a room full of Windham Republicans.
The Windham Town Republicans listened to every word I said and asked great questions at the end.
After a hectic Tuesday, Wednesday offered a much more peaceful venture to the northern New Hampshire town of Franconia, where celebrated author Jack McEnany had invited me to meet with some of his friends and neighbors.  Jack has written a book on north country logging called Brush Cat, and he also co-authored Bode Miller’s autobiography.

It was a beautiful day, so we all sat in the yard and talked.  His friends asked great questions, and it was really just a terrific conversation.
It was a beautiful day to sit and chat about the challenges facing America.
After taking time out for a very pleasant hike with Jack on a nearby portion of the Appalachian Trail, I headed back down to Manchester for my first look at the New Hampshire campaign headquarters.  “Wow,” I thought. “This is going to be great!”

I’ll be returning to New Hampshire again this coming weekend, and I’m very excited to announce that I’ll be competing in Saturday’s White Mountain Cycling Classic to benefit New England Disabled Sports.  My staff also tells me they are planning our Headquarters-Opening Party in Manchester for the following evening at 5 p.m., so it’s a very exciting time for this young, ambitious campaign in New Hampshire.  Thank you all for being part of this adventure and this race to win the first-in-the-nation primary!

Which GOP Candidate Has the Best Job Growth Record?

Who’s the best job creator of them all?

While all the GOP contenders are quick to hit the “jobs, jobs, jobs” mantra...

Gary Johnson has the best record of the official candidates, with a job-growth rate of 11.6 percent during his tenure
- National Review Online

Google Gary Johnson

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Abortion Litmus Test Seeks to Divide GOP Primary

How should a president go about choosing the most qualified people to serve in critical Cabinet or Executive Branch positions?

One would hope the President would pick the most qualified position for the job. Unfortunately, several GOP candidates have pledged a different litmus test to weed out their initial choices: they must be pro-life (or what some might call “anti-choice”). (2012 GOP Candidates Sign Susan B. Anthony List Pro-Life Pledge)

The head of the Department of Justice is one of the appointments mentioned in the pledge. The head of the DOJ is the Attorney General of the United States. According to the DOJ's own website, it’s mission is as follows:
To enforce the law and defend the interests of the United States according to the law; to ensure public safety against threats foreign and domestic; to provide federal leadership in preventing and controlling crime; to seek just punishment for those guilty of unlawful behavior; and to ensure fair and impartial administration of justice for all Americans." - DOJ Mission Statement
Abortion is currently legal in the United States, and the U.S. Constitution does not give the Attorney General any power whatsoever to change laws. So why the litmus test? Yes, it’s true that abortion is hardly a celebrated procedure, but polls show that most Americans prefer for it to remain legal rather than banning it and forcing the abortion industry underground. (Poll: Americans Ambivalent on Abortion) Regardless, the days of applying such single-issue litmus-tests ought to be behind us by now. I mean, isn’t the country already divided enough over politics?

Signers of the Susan B. Anthony List Pro-Life Pledge include Michele Bachmann, Newt Gingrich, Ron Paul, Tim Pawlenty and Rick Santorum. This pledge may help these candidates succeed in increasing their appeal to social conservatives, but taking a pledge such as this will seriously hurt their chances if they move on to the general election at a time when voters want to focus on the economy and not social issues.

Candidates who did not sign the litmus test pledge were Mitt Romney, Herman Cain, and Gary Johnson. Of these, only Johnson supports a woman’s right to choose. Fortunately for Johnson, more Republicans are pro-choice than the media seems to realize. Johnson’s moderate position on abortion -- opposing taxpayer funding, supporting parental notification, and having signed a ban on late-term abortions as Governor of New Mexico -- may make him an attractive choice not only to pro-choice Republicans and independents, but to pro-life voters who have decided that this should no longer be considered a litmus test issue.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Gary Johnson On The Issues - Drug Policy Reform

Despite our best efforts at enforcement, education and interdiction, people continue to use and abuse illegal drugs.

The parallels between drug policy today and Prohibition in the 1920’s are obvious, as are the lessons our nation learned. Prohibition was repealed because it made matters worse. Today, no one is trying to sell our kids bathtub gin in the schoolyard and micro-breweries aren’t protecting their turf with machine guns. It’s time to apply that thinking to marijuana. By making it a legal, regulated product, availability can be restricted, under-age use curtailed, enforcement/court/incarceration costs reduced, and the profit removed from a massive underground and criminal economy.

By managing marijuana like alcohol and tobacco – regulating, taxing and enforcing its lawful use – America will be better off. The billions saved on marijuana interdiction, along with the billions captured as legal revenue, can be redirected against the individuals committing real crimes against society. Harder drugs should not be legalized, but their use should be dealt with as a health issue – not a criminal justice issue.

Getting Smart about Drugs

The History Is Clear
AMERICANS WERE PROMISED IN THE 1970'S AND 1980's that hefty enforcement budgets and tougher sentences would lead to less crime and drug abuse.

* We have all been raised to believe that there are only two camps in the drug policy universe -- "pro-drug" and "anti-drug" -- and that any person who does not support the "War on Drugs" is automatically "pro-drug." This simply isn't the case.
* Since only criminal gangs and cartels are willing to take the risks associated with large-scale black market distribution, the War on Drugs has made a lot of dangerous people and organizations very rich and very powerful.
* The same happened with Alcohol Prohibition (1920-1933). Prohibition had only a minimal effect on the desire of Americans to drink (in some cases, it clearly made drinking more attractive), but pushing alcohol underground had other effects: overdose deaths, gang violence, and other prohibition-related harms increased dramatically during the Prohibition years.

Make Marijuana Legal
OVER A MILLION AND A HALF AMERICANS were arrested last year on drug charges, and nearly 40% of those arrests were for marijuana possession alone. Does this make sense?

* A recent Gallup poll reports that 46% of Americans now agree that marijuana should be legalized, a dramatic increase in support that reflects Americans' increased knowledge and understanding of the issue. Proposals to regulate marijuana similarly to alcohol have been considered in several states, and Governor Johnson has supported those efforts; he believes the federal government should end its prohibition mandate and allow each state to pursue its own desired policy.
* Governor Johnson believes it is insane to arrest roughly 800,000 people a year for choosing to use a natural substance that is, by any reasonable objective standard, less harmful than alcohol, a drug that is advertised at every major sporting event.
* As Governor Johnson often points out to concerned parents, "it will never be legal for a person to smoke marijuana, become impaired, and get behind the wheel of a car or otherwise do harm to others, and it will never be legal for kids to smoke marijuana." But we have to understand that marijuana is our nation's #1 cash crop despite the prohibition; it will always be available to those who really wish to use it.
* When polled, high school kids say marijuana is easier to get than alcohol. Perhaps this is because they buy from black market dealers who do not ask for ID?
* Legalization of marijuana would instantly and dramatically improve conditions on our southern border. Marijuana is Mexico's #1 illegal export, dramatically reducing the power and wealth of the drug lords, and instantly helping to restore stability in a nation whose stability and sustainability is truly vital to our economic and national security interests. If we truly wish to reduce border violence, take the profit out of it.

Harm Reduction
BEFORE WE CAN GET SERIOUS ABOUT REDUCING the harms associated with drugs, we have to accept that there will never be a drug-free society.

* To create a drug-free society, we'd have to build a police apparatus so intrusive that all Americans would have to be under surveillance 24 hours a day... presumably for their own good. Would citizens of the "land of the free" ever stand for that?
* Abuse of hard drugs is a health problem that should be dealt with by health experts, not a problem that should be clogging up our courts, jails, and prisons with addicts. Instead of continuing to arrest and incarcerate drug users, we should seriously consider the examples of countries such as Portugal and the Netherlands, and we should ultimately choose to adopt policies which aim to reduce death, disease, violence, and crime associated with dangerous drugs.
* Honest, effective education will be key to succeeding with this transition. America has cut teen cigarette use in half, not by criminalizing possession and use, but through a combination of honest education and sensible regulation.
* We can never totally eliminate drug addiction and drug abuse. We can, however, minimize these harms and reduce the negative effects they have on society by making sure drug abusers are able to access effective treatment options (jail is not an effective treatment option).

(Audio) Gary Johnson At Strong America Now Event In Iowa

O.Kay Henderson

Former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson is the second Republican presidential candidate to speak at today’s Strong America Now event in Des Moines.

He pledged to present a balanced budget to congress for 2013.  “And that means cutting $1.65 trillion from the federal budget,” Johnson said, getting applause.  “We’re on the verge of a financial collapse…This is not a problem for our kids and our grandkids. This is a problem we’ve got right now and it needs to be addressed.”

He got the biggest crowd response of the day (so far) when he laid out his proposals regarding tax policy. ”‘This is what we should be cussing, discussing,” Johnson said, then he told the crowd he’d eliminate the federal income tax and the I.R.S., replacing it with the Fair Tax (a national sales tax).

Johnson talked about foreign policy as well, saying he “initially” thought the U.S. mission in Afghanistan was warranted.  “Let’s get out of Iraq and Afghanistan tomorrow,” he said, getting a smattering of applause. “…A through Z I’m opposed to what we’re doing in Libya.”

Johnson also got a huge burst of applause for his call to eliminate the U.S. Department of Education and return the responsibility of education to the states.  “It’s kind of a no-brainer,” he said, drawing more applause.

Johnson got some applause for his proposal on immigration reform.  Work visas would secure the borders, according to Johnson, who added beefing up border security would be a wasted investment.  It was a seque to his call for decriminalizing drugs, as he said 90 percent of the nation’s drug problem is “prohibition related.”

Listen to Johnson’s speech: JohnsonJune18

During the Q&A section, Johnson was quizzed about his call to cut defense spending by 43 percent and pressed hard about his stand on drugs.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

The Atlantic: Gary Johnson Crashes The N.H. Republican Debate

The Atlantic

The former governor didn't get an invite, so he sat alone in a room, answered the questions, and posted his answers to YouTube

It used to be that a YouTube presidential debate consisted of citizens uploading questions so that candidates could answer them. After being excluded from the GOP presidential primary debate held in New Hampshire on Tuesday, however, former New Mexico governor Gary Johnson turned that model on its head, taking the questions from the televised event and splicing them together with answers he recorded and uploaded to the video sharing site. Unlike the other candidates, he got to answer every question!

This is interesting in that media organizations that host debates can no longer act as gatekeepers: CNN and the New Hampshire Union Leader thought Johnson didn't merit inclusion, but Will Wilkinson of The Economist disagreed, as did I, and we're free to embed his answers for our audiences.

There are dozens of other lesser known candidates running for president. They aren't successful former two-term governors, and I'd never promise to embed video of their answers to debate questions. But do you know what? If another lesser known produced a 40 minute clip with answers so compelling that I thought they could go viral, or were worthy of wider attention, I'd totally hit the embed button again. And other journalists and indy-bloggers with different taste in candidates might exercise their own judgments and give wider attention to their own pols of choice. It isn't a perfect system, but compared to letting CNN makes the call it strikes me as an improvement. And one day, it might be a viable method for breaking into a race in a way never before seen.

Rolling Stone: Meet Gary Johnson, The GOP's Invisible Candidate

H/T Gary Johnson Grassroots Forum

Meet Gary Johnson, the GOP's Invisible Candidate

Gary Johnson is the Rodney Dangerfield of the GOP’s 2012 field. He gets no respect. Despite being a successful former two-term governor of New Mexico who shrank state government by wielding his veto pen with fervor, an entrepreneur who sold the 1,000 person construction business he built from scratch, and an accomplished athlete (who else in the field has summited Everest?) Johnson has struggled to break through – with voters or the press.

The latest insult? CNN – which saw fit to invite Herman Cain, the former CEO of a third-rate pizza chain who has never held elected office, to its debate in New Hampshire the other night – told Johnson to take a hike because he's polling below 2 percent.

That’s a shame, because in an interview with Rolling Stone, Johnson proved himself to be one of the more honest – and certainly more unorthodox – politicians in the running.

Johnson calls himself a "classical liberal," though others might prefer "libertarian." He favors legalizing marijuana (he says he toked up as recently as 2008) and prostitution and supports a woman’s right to choose, liberal immigration reform and an anti-war foreign policy – even as he’s called for draconian spending cuts and for dropping the corporate tax rate to zero as a means to jumpstart jobs creation.

Get Johnson talking and he’ll prove to you that he’s no joke. Perhaps in the next round the august political tastemakers at CNN will see fit to find him a podium – if only to subject him to John King’s incisive "this or that" questioning.

Read the complete interview here.

Cross posted at The Libertarian Patriot and the Left Coast Rebel

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Gary Johnson answers every question from CNN Debate (updated)

The old version of the youtube with the missing answer to the ethanol question is here:, but the campaign will be taking the old version down soon.

Monday, June 13, 2011

(Video) Gary Johnson On Freedom Watch 6/13/11

"The talk of the town is that Governor Johnson is not here [the debate] because CNN wouldn't permit it."

Sunday, June 12, 2011

"Climb Mt. CNN" Moneybomb

Despite Gary's exclusion from the CNN debate in NH, we know that Gary is still a viable candidate, that he is not some dark horse, and that he has the resume that qualifies him for the job. He polls nationally at 2-3%, meeting CNN's criteria. Polling shouldn't be an issue, as both former presidents Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton polled at 1% at this point in their respective election cycles. Gary also polled at 2% a mere 4 months before the first NM Republican primary and still managed to come out on top.

So we ask all Gary Johnson supporters to donate what ever amount they can on June 11-13, which is the weekend prior and going into the debate. Gary has faced many great obstacles before, whether it is the challenge of running his successful business that he started from literally nothing; running for governor of a state with absolutely zero name recognition and winning the primary and general elections; or climbing Mt. Everest, no obstacle is too great, and we must persevere past setbacks and use them to our advantage. Help Gary climb "Mt. CNN"!

Visit and donate your most generous amount, and remember that there is no such thing as a donation too small. Even a $10 donation goes a long way.

(Facebook users can join the event here: "Climb Mt. CNN" Moneybomb on Facebook)

Gary Johnson On The Issues - Civil Liberties

Civil liberties are so foundational to America that the first eight amendments to the Constitution address them directly. These amendments enshrine government’s duty to protect individual liberties, including the rights to free speech and free association.

But today, government has created for itself sweeping powers to monitor the private lives of individuals and otherwise intrude upon our daily activities, our households and our businesses. The extent of the government’s reach today would be unrecognizable to the Founders.

Much of the recent erosion in civil liberties has occurred in the name of national security. But we can – and must -- combat threats to our safety while adhering to due process and the rule of law.

End the assault on privacy
THE FREEDOMS ON WHICH AMERICA WAS FOUNDED are now under attack from the very people charged with protecting and upholding them.

* The PATRIOT Act should be allowed to expire, which would restore proper judicial oversight to federal investigations and again require federal investigators to prove probable cause prior to executing a search.
* Habeus corpus should be respected entirely, requiring the government to either charge incarcerated individuals with a crime or be released.
* The TSA should take a risk-based approach to airport security. Only high-risk individuals should be subjected to invasive pat-downs and full-body scans.
* The TSA should not have a monopoly on airport security. Airports and airlines should be encouraged to seek the most effective methods for screening travelers, including private sector screeners. Screeners outside of government can be held fully accountable for their successes and failures.

Government must be neutral on personal beliefs
WE ARE A NATION OF MANY PEOPLES and beliefs. The only way to respect all citizens is to allow each to make personal decisions themselves.

* Life is precious and must be protected. A woman should be allowed to make her own decisions during pregnancy until the point of viability of a fetus.
* Stem cell research should only be completed by private laboratories that operate without federal funding.
* Government should not impose its values upon marriage. It should protect the rights of couples to engage in civil unions if they wish, as well as the rights of religious organizations to follow their beliefs.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

YouTube video shows Gary Johnson qualified for NH debate

I put together this video to go along with the post "Governor Gary Johnson has Qualified for the Debate!". It steps through the debate criteria, looking at the polling data, and doing the math.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Gary Johnson On The Issues - The Economy and Taxes

Americans are more concerned than ever before about the future of our economy, and those concerns are well-founded. As a nation, we simply can't afford to continue borrowing 43 cents out of every dollar we spend. Balancing the budget will mean making some serious changes in Washington, but these will be the corrections America needs to remain a free, prosperous, and secure nation.
The U.S. must adopt 3 approaches:

Cut Spending
THIS RECESSION HAS FORCED FAMILIES AND BUSINESSES across America to make hard choices and limit their expenditures. We must now expect our elected officials to make the tough calls that will keep our government on a sustainable path moving forward. We must restrain spending across the board:

* Revise the terms of entitlement programs such as Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security, which threaten to bankrupt the nation's future.
* Eliminate the costly and ineffective military interventions in Iraq and Afghanistan; limit defense spending to actions that truly protect the United States.
* Stop spending on the fiscal stimulus, transportation, energy, housing, and all other special interests. The U.S. must restrain spending across the board.

Cut Taxes
THE U.S. TAX SYSTEM IMPOSES AN ENORMOUS toll on productivity through high marginal rates, absurd complexity, loopholes for the well-connected, and incentives for wasteful decisions. The government must lower the tax burden to stimulate the economy.

* Eliminate punitive taxation of savings and investment.
* Simplify the tax code; stop using it to reward special interests and control behavior.
* Eliminate the corporate income tax so that America will once again be a great place to start a business.

Reduce Federal Involvement in the Economy
MUCH FEDERAL INTERVENTION IS A PAYOUT TO special interests or counterproductive meddling that stifles competition, innovation, and growth.

We should:

* Reject auto and banking bailouts, state bailouts, corporate welfare, cap-and-trade, card check, and the mountain of regulation that protects special interests rather than benefiting consumers or the economy.
* Restrict Federal Reserve policy to maintaining price stability, not bailing out financial firms or propping up the housing sector.
* Eliminate government support of Fannie and Freddie.
* Reduce or eliminate federal involvement in education; let states expand successful reforms such as vouchers and charter schools.
* Legalize, tax, and regulate marijuana, rather than wasting money on an expensive and futile prohibition.
* Eliminate needless barriers to free trade and make it easier for would-be legal immigrants to apply for work visas.

Gary Johnson 2012: "Tell CNN"


Online Petition to get Gary Johnson in the debate.

(404) 827-1500 or (202) 898-7900
Text: CNN (space) and your news tip to 772937 (don’t forget the space after CNN).
Twitter: @CNN or @teamCNN

(603) 669-9999
Twitter: @WMUR9

Union Leader
(603) 668-4321 Twitter: @unionleader

Governor Gary Johnson has Qualified for the Debate!

Does Governor Gary Johnson qualify for the debate using the debate partner's criteria?
First we need their criteria:

The Union Leader and its partners invited every potential candidate who met any one of three standards:

  • An average of at least 2.00 percent in at least three national polls released in April by ABC, AP, Bloomberg, CBS, CNN, FOX, Gallup, Los Angeles Times, Marist, McClatchy, NBC, Newsweek, Pew, Quinnipiac, Reuters, USA Today or Time.
  • An average of at least 2.00 percent in at least three national polls released in May by any of those organizations.
  • An average of at least 2.00 percent in polls of New Hampshire voters conducted by the University of New Hampshire Survey Center and released in May.

  • Let's take the second criteria since Johnson only needs to meet one of the three to qualify and debate sponsor CNN didn't include him in their April polling.

    CNN's Opinion Research Corporation Poll May 24-26

    Johnson only polls at 1% if we use CNN's poll question that includes the unlikely and undeclared candidates of Giuliani, Palin, and Bachmann. Johnson is the second choice for 2% of respondents, and when Giuliani and Palin are removed from the list of candidates then Johnson is at 2%.

    Gallup Poll May 20-24th

    A similar story plays out in Gallup's poll. Johnson is at 2% when undeclared candidates Palin and Bachmann are included, but when excluding Palin then Johnson is at 3%.

    The last poll is the most difficult because of the polling firms listed as acceptable I couldn't find polls from most of them and the polls from AP didn't include Johnson.

    Quinnipiac had a poll from April 26-May 1 with Johnson at 1% which included Huckabee and Palin. If we count this as a May poll then that would round out the criteria of being in 3 national polls. [Added: thanks to Kreationz commenting and pointing this one out.]

    There were two respected polling firms that listed Johnson in May:
    Harris Interactive has him at 1% with a poll including Palin, Bachmann, and Guiliani.
    Zogby International has him at 1% with Palin, Christie, and Bachmann in the poll.

    Let's assume Johnson only polls at 1% from any of these other polling agencies listed. This still gives Johnson an average of 2% in three polls in May. For the math challenged (3% + 2% + 1%) / 3 = 2%.

    By using the debate sponsors' own objective criteria Johnson does average at 2% in at least three polls in May. The only question is why are they choosing to exclude one of the most qualified people running for president?

    Supporter buys ad in NH's largest paper to protest media elite's exclusion of Johnson

    The exclusion of Governor Gary Johnson "gnaws your craw" according to Kerry Welsh who bought two ad spots in NH's largest newspaper the Manchester Union Leader to express his frustration and highlight Governor Johnson's personal, business, and political record.

    Welsh's website has links to email, phone, and twitter contacts for the three media cosponsors of the first GOP debate in NH, along with the pdf version of the advertisement.

    The ad appeared on page A5 of Wednesday's issue. While on the front page the Union Leader listed the criteria for the debate. Johnson's poll numbers ranged from 1-3% depending on how many non-candidates the pollsters decided to include, or if they even included Johnson. CNN only included him in one poll in May.

    Welsh's ad is scheduled to appear again in the upcoming Sunday issue.

    Tuesday, June 7, 2011

    Why Won’t CNN Let Me Come To Their Debate?

    In the early part of 1991, there was a governor from a relatively small state who, away from the national spotlight, had compiled a credible record, been reelected by those he served, and who was in the early stages of putting together a national campaign for President. His ranking in national political polls – when he was included – was in the neighborhood of 1-2%. By the end of 1991, he had skyrocketed to roughly six percent.

    His name: Bill Clinton.

    The so-called “frontrunners” for the ’92 Democrat presidential when Bill Clinton was still a blip on the screen? Mario Cuomo and Jerry Brown, both of whom were polling in double-digits. We all know how that turned out.
    Likewise, in 1975, another governor, Jimmy Carter, was polling at 1%. And in 1987, the same was true of a fellow named Dukakis.

    The point is clear: Using polls this early in a presidential election cycle to define who is a serious candidate or pick potential winners is a bad idea. Using them to exclude me, another Governor with a solid track record, from a critical national primary debate is even worse. But that is precisely what CNN and the other sponsors of the June 13 New Hampshire Republican presidential primary debate are doing.

    Debates are important. Polls taken 7 or 8 months before the first votes are cast are not. Polls at this point in the 2012 election cycle are little more than reflections of name ID, selective coverage by the national media, and campaign war chests. Debates, on the other hand, are unique opportunities to put those meaningless factors aside, level the playing field, and let actual voters decide who is credible, who has the credentials, and who offers the ideas they are looking for. No handlers, no fluff, no advertising – just the candidates, their words, and their plans for the nation.

    Unfortunately, by splitting hairs and drawing lines in polling data that clearly fall within those polls’ margins of error, CNN is ignoring not only history, but basic fairness. In 1994, nobody believed I could be elected governor of New Mexico. The news media, the Republican “establishment”, the career politicians – none of them gave me a shot. Due in large part to the opportunity to debate the other candidates, my ideas, my background as an entrepreneur, and my proposed solutions resonated with voters, and I was not only elected, but reelected as a Republican in an overwhelmingly Democrat state.

    In short, I didn’t just crawl out from under a rock and declare myself a candidate for the presidency. I served for eight years as arguably the most fiscally conservative governor in the nation. I turned a budget deficit into a surplus, reduced the size of state government by more than 1,000 employees – without firing any qualified workers, and cut taxes 14 times. In the course of reducing government and balancing the budget, I vetoed 750 bills – probably more than all other governors in the nation combined. And I lived to tell the story in a heavily Democrat state.

    Having traveled the country and spoken with literally thousands of Americans in the past year, regardless of CNN’s Gary Johnson poll arithmetic, it is clear to me that more than a few Republicans, Independents, and Democrats are looking for new, dramatic, and unadulterated ideas and leadership. My purpose in running for president is to give those Americans a voice and an alternative to business-as-usual.

    The voters ultimately may or may not decide that Gary Johnson is the alternative they want; but, they should at least have a chance to decide for themselves, rather than have CNN preselect their candidates for them.

    This is not about me. Whether I am on CNN’s stage Monday or not, I will continue to give voice to an approach to government that is otherwise largely missing. The real issue is that a major network is using largely irrelevant polling data and statistically insignificant arithmetic as justifications to impose its political wisdom on the American people.

    The Daily Caller - Presidential Candidate Gary Johnson On CNN’s Silence: “Really Disheartening”

    The Daily Caller

    It has been five days since CNN announced that presidential candidate Gary Johnson, the former governor of New Mexico, will be excluded from next week’s debate in New Hampshire.

    In that time, Johnson has garnered a wealth of support, though CNN has remained steadfast in requiring candidates to receive at least two percent in the polls.

    In an interview with The Daily Caller, Johnson called it “really disheartening” and “really disappointing.”

    “I never contemplated being excluded from the debate table,” he said. At this point, he’s no longer hopeful that CNN and the other debate sponsors will have a change of heart.

    “I was hopeful going into the weekend,” said Johnson. “Now I’m not because we haven’t heard a word.”

    On Tuesday, a senior adviser to the Johnson campaign, Ron Neilson, sent a letter to CNN, saying that the decision to use polling criteria “seven months before a single vote is cast is not only absurd, but counter-intuitive to the very purpose of a debate.”

    One Johnson supporter was so incensed by the exclusion that she took out a full-page ad that will run Wednesday and Sunday in the Manchester Union Leader under the headline “Tis A Sad Day for Democracy.”

    Johnson also told TheDC he was excluded in part because of his political beliefs. “I halfway have to think it’s the positions I have also,” he said, adding that Bill Clinton was in the same polling range at this stage in his campaign. Moreover, said Johnson, he was actually left out of CNN’s polls for the month of April.

    Seven other candidates are scheduled to appear at the debate, held on the campus of Saint Anselm College: Rep. Michele Bachmann, Herman Cain, Newt Gingrich, Ron Paul, Tim Pawlenty, Mitt Romney, and Rick Santorum.

    Will Johnson still attend – as a form of silent protest? No, he told TheDC, saying it would be “terribly uncomfortable.”

    “It’s an embarrassment.”

    Gary Johnson On The Issues - Spending and the Deficit

    Government spends too much because it does too much. Unchecked deficits are the single greatest threat to our national security. Unless we take significant steps soon, our federal debt will equal the entire economic production of the United States.

    We should start by reassessing the role of the federal government, and always asking the question: Should the government be doing this in the first place?
    We must act now to:

    Balance the Budget
    THE U.S. IS BORROWING OR PRINTING MORE than 40 cents of every dollar the government spends today. The math is simple: Federal spending must be cut not by millions or billions, but by trillions. And it must be done today.

    It's time to:

    * End excessive spending, bloated stimulus programs, unnecessary farm subsidies, and earmarks.
    * Reassess the role of the federal government and identify responsibilities that can be met more efficiently by the private sector.
    * Recognize that you can't have limited government at home, but big government abroad.

    Enact Responsible Entitlement Reform
    MOST PEOPLE IN WASHINGTON SEEM TO THINK that we can control spending and balance the budget without reforming Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security. This is lunacy.

    * Identify and implement common-sense cost savings to place Medicare on a path toward long-term solvency.
    * Block grant Medicare and Medicaid funds to the states, allowing them to innovate, find efficiencies and provide better service at lower cost.
    * Repeal ObamaCare, as well as the failed Medicare prescription drug benefit.
    * Fix Social Security by changing the escalator from being based on wage growth to inflation. It's time for Social Security to reflect today's realities without breaking trust with retirees.

    Audit the Federal Reserve
    THE FEDERAL RESERVE SHOULD BE TRANSPARENT and its actions held to the same level of scrutiny as any other federal department.

    * The American people deserve to know the extent to which the Fed has purchased private assets at home and abroad.
    * Many Americans have become interested in the Federal Reserve in recent years. America's representatives in Washington, D.C. need to also become a lot more interested in how this government institution affects the American economy.
    * The role and the activities of the Federal Reserve are long overdue for examination, reassessment, and ultimately, thoughtful reform. Can the Federal Reserve pursue both stable prices and full employment, or does its currency manipulation cause malinvestment, inflation, and prolonged unemployment?
    * Conduct an audit to provide true transparency of the Federal Reserve's lending practices.
    * Establish clear Congressional oversight.
    * Get the Federal Reserve out of the business of printing money and buying debt through quantitative easing.

    Monday, June 6, 2011

    Johnson Campaign Protests CNN Debate Exclusion

    June 6, 2011, Santa Fe, NM – A senior advisor to former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson’s presidential campaign, Ron Nielson, today sent the following letter to CNN concerning Governor Johnson’s exclusion from the June 13 New Hampshire primary debate:

    “The Gary Johnson for President campaign has been overwhelmed over the weekend with phone calls and emails all asking the same question: How is it that Governor Johnson is being excluded from the June 13 New Hampshire presidential primary debate? Of course, they are asking the wrong people.

    “Having heard nothing to the contrary from you, the debate sponsors, we assume the decision not to invite Governor Johnson was based upon your “objective” polling criteria. Certainly, you have to apply criteria. We get that. However, the idea that inclusion – or exclusion – from a critical debate in a critical state will be based entirely upon polling arithmetic, seven months before a single vote is cast, is not only absurd, but counter-intuitive to the very purpose of a debate.

    “At this point in the process, a candidate’s ranking in the polls is almost entirely a factor of name identification, news coverage by outlets such as yours, money, and/or previous exposure on the national level – including that gained from previous unsuccessful campaigns. In short, relying solely on polling numbers at this stage simply grants an enormous advantage to “establishment” candidates – and excludes a successful two-term governor whose express purpose in running is to give Americans an alternative to business as usual, and who actually has a track record to back it up.

    “Given that poll rankings at this point are largely the result of decisions by the elite media, such as CNN, about who and what to cover – and to whom to give precious air time, it is more than a little ironic when those same media use those poll numbers to deem certain candidates deserving and others not. That irony is not lost on Republican primary voters who most assuredly do not want media elites pre-selecting their candidates for them.

    “Consider: In early 1991, then-Governor Bill Clinton was in 11th place in presidential primary polling with 2%. By November of 1991, he was only at 6%, a fact which led one commentator to later observe: “If the front runners in the 1992 Democratic primary had been successful in excluding all the “non-serious” candidates, Bill and Hillary Clinton would have never made it to the national stage.” The “frontrunners” in 1991, by the way, were Mario Cuomo and Jerry Brown.

    “And there is this excerpt from a memorandum sent to supporters by the Mitt Romney campaign in 2007: “Carter, Dukakis, and Clinton were all governors of small states who began their campaigns with low national exposure and went on to win their party’s nomination. At this point in 1975, Carter was polling at 1%; in 1987, Dukakis was polling at 1%; in 1991, Clinton was at 2%.”

    “In short, applying your criteria, the ultimate nominees in several modern elections would likely not have been invited to a CNN debate. And in each case, they were Governors of relatively small states who simply had not enjoyed the advantage of the national media’s attention – a rather precise description of Governor Johnson. The polls were not predictive then, and they are not now.

    “The fundamental unfairness of relying solely on polling criteria aside, there are obvious problems with the polling criteria themselves. Even the most extensive and professional political polls carry margins of error from 3-5%. When reporting polls in which candidates are separated by margins within that range, the news media invariably points out that those candidates are essentially tied or the race is “too close to call”. While we have not seen your precise calculations, based on the polls we have seen, we have to assume that the “margin” between Governor Johnson and some of those who were invited to the debate were equally “too close to call”. Yet you made a call – and decided to exclude Governor Johnson.

    “Adding to the mystery of your arithmetic is the simple fact that Governor Johnson was not even included in much of CNN’s own polling during the month of April – one of the time periods you used to determine eligibility. It is hardly surprising that a candidate would not fare well in a poll in which he was not included.

    “Debates play an important role in the American political process. They uniquely provide an opportunity for voters to hear, see, contrast and compare candidates – on a level playing field uncluttered by funding, name I.D., past notoriety and public relations machines. Rather, they are about credentials, ideas, philosophies and policies.

    “By those measures, a two-term Republican governor from a Democrat state — who turned a deficit into a surplus, vetoed 750 bills, and successfully governed from a philosophy many, many Republicans are today seeking – deserves a chance to participate in the June 13 debate. Early and largely irrelevant polling arithmetic certainly should not trump the obvious: Gary Johnson has a record, a resume and the proven accomplishments to merit inclusion among any serious gathering of Republican candidates for president.

    “We respectfully ask that the decision to exclude Governor Johnson be revisited, and that the American people be given an opportunity to hear a voice on June 13 that otherwise will not be heard.


    Ron Nielson
    Senior Advisor
    Gary Johnson 2012”

    Gary Johnson On The Issues - Foreign Policy

    Maintaining a strong national defense is the most basic of the federal government’s responsibilities. However, building schools, roads, and hospitals in other countries are not among those basic obligations. Yet that is exactly what we have been doing for much of the past 10 years.

    Given trillion-dollar deficits, America simply cannot afford to be engaged in foreign policy programs that are not clearly protecting U.S. interests. There is nation-building and rebuilding to be done right here at home.

    Our military should remain the most potent force for good on Earth. To do this, we should resort to military action as the last option and only as provided in the Constitution.

    Bring the Troops Home
    AMERICAN MILITARY ACTIVITIES IN IRAQ, AFGHANISTAN, AND, now, Libya should end, our troops returned home, and the focus of our foreign policy reoriented toward the protection of U.S. citizens and interests.

    * With Osama bin Laden now killed and after 10 years of fighting, U.S. forces should leave Afghanistan's challenges to the Afghan people.
    * Saddam Hussein has been out of power in Iraq for nearly eight years. America must leave so Iraq can have a chance to grow into a responsible member of the world community.
    * Without a clear goal for our military actions in Libya, fighting rages on, and the American people are footing the bill.
    * Decades after the collapse of the Soviet Union, American troops remain scattered throughout Europe. It is time to reevaluate these deployments.
    * The U.S. must make better use of military alliances which allow greater sharing of the human and financial burdens at less cost of protecting national interests.

    Lead By Example
    AMERICA CAN USE 'SOFT POWER' AS EFFECTIVELY as 'hard power' to further our foreign policy goals.

    * No criminal or terrorist suspect captured by the U.S. should be subject to physical or psychological torture.
    * Individuals incarcerated unjustly by the U.S. should have the ability to seek compensation through the courts.
    * Individuals detained by the U.S., whether it be at Guantanamo Bay or elsewhere, must be given due process via the courts or military tribunals, and must not be held indefinitely without regard to those fundamental processes.

    (Video) Gary Johnson On FOX News - Fox & Friends 6/6/11

    (Video) Gary Johnson On FOX News - America's News HQ 6/5/11

    Sunday, June 5, 2011

    Get Gary Johnson In The June 13 GOP Debate

    June 4, 2011, Santa Fe, NM – A senior advisor to former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson’s presidential campaign said Saturday that Governor Johnson’s exclusion from a June 13 New Hampshire primary debate is “unacceptable” and the result of criteria that “picks winners and losers” seven months before the first presidential primary votes are cast. In a statement, the advisor, Ron Nielson, said:

    “Since it was announced that Governor Gary Johnson has been excluded from the June 13 Republican presidential primary debate in New Hampshire, we have heard from people all across the county who are either bewildered, angry – or both, by the debate sponsors’ decision.

    “As Governor Johnson has said, his exclusion denies a voice at the debate for a substantial slice of the Republican Party, those who share his undiluted view of personal liberty and real fiscal restraint.

    “While we have had no specific explanation from the debate sponsors, it appears that Gary Johnson’s exclusion was based on some mysterious polling arithmetic. Whatever that arithmetic was, the differences that excluded us while producing invitations for several other less-known candidates would certainly fall within the margin of error of any poll. CNN didn’t even include Governor Johnson in some of their own April polls, yet we suspect they used those polls in their math. That makes no sense whatsoever.

    “More importantly, at this early stage of the campaign, it is a simple reality that polling numbers are almost entirely a product of name ID, money, and decisions by the media, including the debate sponsors, to cover some candidates more than others. That a successful two-term governor with an unmatched record for cutting spending and advocating real freedom who is a declared candidate for president is barred from a critical debate on the basis of fractions of percentage points seven months before the first votes are cast is unacceptable.

    “If we are going to focus on polls, we should be looking at the ones showing that many, many Republican and potential Republican primary voters are not satisfied with the field of candidates. That won’t change if those voters are denied the opportunity to see who and what their options really are – the opportunity a debate is supposed to provide. By excluding a candidate like Gary Johnson with polling that is largely irrelevant at this stage, the debate sponsors are doing just the opposite – they are picking winners and losers seven months before the election.”

    Do not let the sponsors of the debate shut out Gary Johnson. He is an important voice that needs to be heard by the millions that will be watching that evening. Please continue to apply pressure to CNN, WMUR and the Union Leader to include him in the June 13 debate.

    Online Petition to get Gary Johnson in the debate.

    (404) 827-1500 or (202) 898-7900
    Text: CNN (space) and your news tip to 772937 (don’t forget the space after CNN).
    Twitter: @CNN or @teamCNN

    (603) 669-9999
    Twitter: @WMUR9

    Union Leader
    (603) 668-4321 Twitter: @unionleader

    Welcome To The Gary Johnson Grassroots Blog

    Hello and Welcome

    Thank you for visiting the new Gary Johnson Grassroots Blog, your unofficial stop for news and opinions on the GOP candidate that we look to as the future President of the United States.

    We are not associated with the Gary Johnson 2012 campaign but are supporters of the former New Mexico Governor and hope to provide you with the latest articles, video and opinions relating to Governor Johnson and his quest for the White House in 2012.
    Governor Johnson, who has been referred to as the ‘most fiscally conservative Governor’ in the country, was the Republican Governor of New Mexico from 1994-2003.

    A successful businessman before running for office in 1994, Gov. Johnson started a door-to-door handyman business to help pay his way through college. Twenty years later, he had grown the firm into one of the largest construction companies in New Mexico with over 1,000 employees. Not surprisingly, Governor Johnson brings a distinctly business-like mentality to governing, believing that decisions should be made based on cost-benefit analysis rather than strict ideology.

    Johnson is best known for his veto record, which includes over 750 vetoes during his time in office, more than all other governors combined and his use of the veto pen has since earned him the nickname “Governor Veto.” He cut taxes 14 times while never raising them when he left office, New Mexico was one of only four states in the country with a balanced budget.

    Term-limited, Johnson retired from public office in 2003. An avid skier, adventurer, and bicyclist, he has currently reached four of the highest peaks on all seven continents, including Mt. Everest.

    In 2009, after becoming increasingly concerned with the country’s out-of-control national debt and precarious financial situation, the Governor formed the OUR America Initiative, a 501c(4) non-profit that promotes fiscal responsibility, civil liberties, and rational public policy. He traveled to more than 30 states and spoke to over 150 conservative and libertarian groups during his time as Honorary Chairman.

    He has two grown children- a daughter Seah and a son Erik and currently resides in a house he built himself in Taos, New Mexico.
    Please take a moment to view Governor Johnson's latest campaign ad and also be sure to visit the official campaign website at