The argument made by people who support nominating former Republican [GOP] candidates as Libertarian Party [LP] candidates is they want to grow the party. They want it to be a big tent. They want to draw the biggest possible audience as possible. But does running these candidates actually build interest in the party itself? Just looking at Google Trends suggests otherwise. Instead, it appears that prior efforts to educate people on the principles of liberty have been more effective in building interest for the Libertarian Party and libertarianism.
Searches for Libertarianism and the LP spiked in 2004 with the Michael Badnarik race. While Gary Johnson had a significant increase over that of Bob Barr, there still were not as many searches for the LP or libertarianism as there were in 2004. Searches for Gary Johnson don’t necessarily lead to searches for the LP.
The MS LP has also been running…
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