It’s a general rule that hypothetical headlines are almost always answered with a “No” by the story beneath them. This is no exception.
I’ve been a Republican since about 2002. I was never a Democrat, but I also never closely identified myself with the GOP until just a few years after I cast my first votes in 1998. I’ve never voted straight party and will continue to vote for individuals of any party who deserve my vote.
The likely GOP nominee is not one of those individuals, and the rebranding of the party in his image is something I can no longer associate myself with.
This isn’t a case of sour grapes, where my preferred candidate lost, so I’m throwing my sucker in the dirt and leaving the playground. I would have happily voted for a number of other candidates, and reluctantly voted for almost all of the rest of them.
However, the first choice of a third to a half of my party to lead us is barely acceptable as a human being, much less a potential leader of the free world.
So this libertarian Republican is no more. Tonight I changed my voter registration in Louisiana to the Libertarian Party. I’ve always identified ideologically with them more anyway.
It seems self-evident that a libertarian would identify with Libertarians. However, I used to think it was a better use of my time to try to make libertarian ideas viable within the Republican Party, given existing figures like Ron Paul and Justin Amash. Why not hope to improve a winning team that agrees with you most of the time than waste your time with a losing team that agrees with you all the time?
That hope has been made folly this year more than ever.
There is no place for libertarian ideals in the GOP. There is barely room for ideals of any kind in the party, given the preferences of a near majority of its voters in the bulk of primary states so far.
While I applaud ongoing efforts to modernize the Republican party, I now have no hope for its success. The GOP is a wretched hive of scum, villainy, xenophobia, protectionism, Confederate nostalgia, cronyism, theocracy, and resentment. And I’m done with it.