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‘Mises Caucus Just Exploded’: Libertarian Party Nominates Left-Winger Chase Oliver

After seven rounds of balloting stretching over seven hours — and coming close to nominating nobody — the Libertarian Party gave its presidential nomination to the decidedly left-leaning Chase Oliver on Sunday night in Washington DC. 

The result was a devastating upset loss for the Mises Caucus. The Rothbardian, self-described “radical libertarian” group seized control of the party in 2020, but failed to push its favored but flawed candidate — Michael Rectenwald — across the goal line. 

Oliver has made national waves before: Running on the Libertarian line in the 2020 Georgia Senate election, Oliver took 2% of the vote, forcing a runoff between Democrat and eventual winner Raphael Warnock and Herschel Walker, the woefully unqualified endorsee of Donald “Mr Poor Personnel Picks” Trump. 

Chase Oliver: “armed and gay” flag-bearer of the Libertarian Party (Robin Rayne/ZUMAPRESS/Newscom)

Oliver, who has described himself as “armed and gay,” will be the party’s youngest-ever nominee at age 38. Among his many stances that will repel not only many libertarians but also other right-wing voters seeking a Trump alternative:

Oliver shared his intended national strategy with Politico:  

“We were looking at who are the most likely populations to be ready to go outside of the two-party system, and we’ve identified young people, and in particular those who are upset with the war going on in Gaza, upset with the immigration crisis, and upset with cost of living. Those are the young people that we’re going to target.”

Mises Caucus candidate Rectenwald picked the worst possible time to exhibit some particularly poor judgement. On the eve of the presidential balloting, he one of three candidates given an opportunity to take the stage and share his perspectives on the speech that had just been delivered by Trump.

At times, Rectenwald struggled to articulate himself, then abandoned the event midway. He later told the Washington Post‘s Meryl Kornfield that he had consumed an edible cannabis product before speaking. “This was not some sort of a major political scandal, okay,” he told her. “I wasn’t found in bed with Stormy Daniels. I’m at a Libertarian Party convention. Somebody offered me something.” And he chose to take it. It’s not clear, though, if the incident had a material effect on his candidacy, which may have been doomed by a lack of charisma. 

In a quirk resulting from the party’s rules and Oliver and Rectenwald’s joint failure to exceed 50% of the votes in Round Six, the final ballot pitted Oliver against “none of the above,” or “NOTA.” Had NOTA prevailed, the party wouldn’t have had a national nominee. However, most individual state parties would have been able to select their own nominee for their state ballot, reported the Post’s Kornfield, citing a ballot access expert. 

Many Libertarians were less than thrilled with Sunday’s outcome: 

Under Libertarian Party rules, the vice presidential nominee is selected by the delegates, not by the presidential candidate. Nonetheless, Oliver’s requested running mate, Mike Ter Maat, a former police officer and loan officer, was given in the nod just before 1am ET, after two rounds of voting. He edged out Mises-backed mortgage broker, Clint Russell, who hosts the Liberty Lockdown podcast, 51% to 47%.  

Meanwhile, desperate to turn Oliver’s nomination into some kind of defeat for frontrunner Trump and potential spoiler Robert F. Kennedy, Jr, the New York Times ran with a moronic headline that implied either one of them had some kind of chance to win the Libertarian crown: “Libertarians Skip Over Trump and R.F.K. Jr. for Chase Oliver.”  

There was no shortage of visceral reactions to the Libertarian convention’s outcome: 

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TruthPukes Take:

  • — Chase Oliver (@ChaseForLiberty) June 25, 2022I finally found a KF94 mask I find to be comfortable and my mask/glasses lanyard arrived so I don’t have to just stuff it in my pocket or on a table when I sit down to eat.
  •   “We were looking at who are the most likely populations to be ready to go outside of the two-party system, and we’ve identified young people, and in particular those who are upset with the war going on in Gaza, upset with the immigration crisis, and upset with cost of living.
  • — Pulse Malone (@malonepulse1) May 27, 2024In a quirk resulting from the party’s rules and Oliver and Rectenwald’s joint failure to exceed 50% of the votes in Round Six, the final ballot pitted Oliver against “none of the above,” or “NOTA.
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