Aug. 3, 2022

555: Strategic Voting 101: GOP vs LP - Which Path is Best for Liberty?

If you're a libertarian, you're probably wondering: which path is best for liberty? Should I vote for the Libertarian Party and hope for the best, or should I vote for the Republican Party and try to change it from the inside?

On today's episode, we're going to dig into strategic voting.


If you're a libertarian, you're probably wondering: which path is best for liberty? Should I vote for the Libertarian Party and hope for the best, or should I vote for the Republican Party and try to change it from the inside?


Fortunately, there's an answer: strategic voting! When you use strategic voting, you put your vote where it will have the most impact—and that means voting for whichever party has the best chance of winning.


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Brian Nichols  0:00  
Instead of focusing on winning arguments, we're teaching the basic fundamentals of sales and marketing and how we can use them to win in the world of politics, teaching you how to meet people where they're at on the issues they care about. Welcome to The Brian Nichols

Brady Leonard  0:11  
Show. Exit later on in the show, I want to talk about areas we can we can get on the offensive, I feel like we're playing defense too often. And actually think gun rights is one of the areas that we can make some serious wins, whether it's, you know, talking to the LGBTQ community, talking to the African American community, you know, making the case that, you know, nonviolent convicted felons should have their gun rights restored, stuff like that, I think we could actually make some serious inroads on the gun front. And I mean, I agree with everything you just said. But there's plenty of time to agree, later on the show actually want to start? Probably the only thing either of us will say on the show today that we disagree with. And that's the million dollar question that a lot of people have been debating. And obviously, this is not a debate show. We're just having, we're just couple dudes having a having a conversation. But a lot of people are debating this and people will continue to obviously. And that's the million dollar question. Should libertarians join the LP? Or should they join the Republican Party and attempt to transform the GOP from the inside out? And personally, I firmly am on the Libertarians joined the GOP side, you know, I'm a registered Republican. I'm actually a former elected Republican, you know, and I'm also a pretty radical libertarian. So I think this is probably the only the only case that I'm guessing you're gonna disagree with me here.

Brian Nichols  1:34  
You know, believe it or not, Brady, I don't actually disagree. So much as I look at it as it has to be a tactical approach. Right, right. So for example, let's look at Kentucky right, great second tucky, where we have one of the best members of Congress in one Congressional Representative Thomas Massie hunterson. Right. So if we were in Thomas Massey's district, I would absolutely discourage any big L libertarian from running in that office. Why? Because what are you doing? We're talking about in political science, there's an idea of what's called strategic voting, right. And then strategic voting, there's two things you're looking for in what you're measuring. Number one, is the value you will get as the voter in the feeling of voting for the candidate that you most want. The other thing you're looking for is the actual outcome, right? In terms of policy from the candidate that actually wins. And you can assign a numerical value to that. And based on, you know, what policies are most important to you and where those candidates stand? And I think you'd find, by and large, folks in the liberty movement will look at somebody like a Thomas Massie and they would probably be on board 90 plus percent of what Thomas Massie has to bring to the table now, yes, we could get a candidate that's 95%, you know, in camp or, or even 99% in camp would libertarian ideas. But then you look at what's the alternative, and you might have a candidate that gives you 20%. Now, if you were to look at the net difference between, you know, Thomas Massie at 90%. And that candidate 20%, but you're gonna have a 70% more of a positive with having Thomas Massie in office than otherwise. And we start to look at instead of, you know, Thomas Massie versus the alternative, which, again, I hate the lesser of two evils argument because they say, Well, you still vote for the GOP, you're still voting for the lesser of two evils.

Brady Leonard  3:21  
Real quick, I'm fine. It's weird. And I'm fine with that argument. I'm fine with the lesser of two evils. I mean, like, I, look, I just I think, in essence, the state is evil. Government itself, not great. I don't know, I've never voted once in my life, where I wasn't looking at it in a lesser of two evils kind of context. You know, like I, you know, even before my libertarian days, it's not like when I was just like a mainstream, you know, Republican. Like, it's not like I looked at any Republican candidate. I voted for him. It's like, oh, yeah, I'm just stoked about this guy. Like, you know what I mean, like, I don't know, I think we're always going to be dealing with the lesser of two evils argument and I don't necessarily think at least as it sits right now that that's a bad thing that somebody would make a decision like that. Which is

Brian Nichols  4:09  
what I say the Libertarians will all right, that's gonna be the case. A lot of Americans out there are in the lesser of two evils can't let's pick the actual lesser of two evils argument where it actually applies. So I look at states where you know, Shane Hazel, I think he played a great role as a spoiler in a state like Georgia, between the lesser of two evils which quite literally are within what five percentage difference points in actual philosophies. And that's something that you are going to see more of, and I think the role for libertarians is going to be number two, twofold. Number one, from a national perspective to keep the other two major parties in line in terms of the specific areas where libertarians can pull away from their base. So for example, if you're talking to folks on the left, you're probably gonna look at more civil liberties, you know, war, a war on drugs, ending the war on terror, so on so forth. In ending overseas interventions, and then on the right, you know, you're gonna talk more about your your fiscal policies, you know, focusing more on your traditional, you know, fiscal conservative or you know, your Rothbardian, economics, Austrian economics, you know, even Chicago economics, right? That's where you're going to force the issue there. Now, you look at, you know, representatives like De Pere view, Purdue, and Kelly Lafleur, if you were to look at them from a true strategic voting perspective versus their democratic candidates, unfortunately, when you're looking at that policy one, right, and that's the one that's the sticky one, because that's the one you can actually refer to actual voting and the ramifications of said voting from policy, versus just that kind of intrinsic feel good that you get when you vote. So in this kind of case, right, you look at the Kelly Lafleur, who maybe she was at 40% of the libertarian positive on the positive wind for the libertarian vote, and then the Democratic candidate maybe gives them 35%. So you're now you're only fiddling with around 10% of difference in terms of what your your percentage points, I may

Brady Leonard  6:03  
push back on those percentages a little bit. If you're looking at an avowed Marxist. And Raphael Warnock who's gonna who's the new Democratic senator from Georgia? I think, you know, I don't think that I understand what you mean, I'm not, I'm not praising Kelly Leffler by any stretch of the imagination, but I think it's, I think the gap in terms of their liberty score is a little bit more dramatic.

Brian Nichols  6:28  
That's why it goes in to two parts. Right? So then it goes to the other part. And that's the first part, what do you get the voter from that intrinsic? That that one value, that aspect, it's hard to actually put a finite number on and as a sales guy, you know, a sales executive, I'm looking for KPIs, I can effectively measure and unfortunately, you can't really effectively measure that value that your average voter is going to bring into the voting booth with that feeling, right. And we see that with Trump, you know, Trump would have that feeling of a lot of people, they just vote for him because he was Trump for better or for worse, right. And it was hard to put that number on that. So what I would say is, to your point, right, you're right, that you would probably wouldn't want the avowed Marxists over a Kelly Lafleur. But now to the libertarian point, well, now in Georgia, if you're running a candidate again, well, you know what, maybe you should make sure that the candidate doesn't suck, maybe the candidate should actually, instead just talking, you know about the ideas of, you know, the free markets or the ideas of civil liberties, whoever may be right, is it just talking about those now, you actually need to get a candidate who's going to actually stand up for those values, and fight for them. And we see this and I bring this up because I was part of the 2010, you know, Tea Party movement back with the GOP and I worked on many campaigns, both from a state level as well as a federal level. And with that, you see a lot of candidates who ran in 2010 2012 and 2014. On the Tea Party wave of this, you know, basically it was a constitutionalist libertarians, small l libertarian movement, right. And you ended up seeing what folks like, you know, Marco Rubio, of all people run as a libertarian. I mean, my goodness, man, I have in my office here, I have a Marco Rubio water bottle, and it says Stay thirsty for liberty. And he signed on it. And I laugh, because now, right, but he ran on this whole idea of liberty. So it's easy for the lip service it then it comes down to actually make holding those candies accountable. So to your point, right, is the GOP the most feasible means on a national level to get Liberty into action? Absolutely. I will not at all disagree with that. But there is a role for the LP and then the LPS role, I'd say is to hold those parties accountable. And if we're talking again, this is federal level, right? When we break it down to a more state perspective, or even a local perspective, I'd say your LP has more of a role, especially in like nonpartisan elections. Because if you're terian, and you you know, you have a nice construction company, and you're a well thought out person in your community. And it's a nonpartisan run for mayor, run, run for

Brady Leonard  9:11  
mayor, city council judge, if you're a lawyer, if you're a libertarian leaning lawyer, that wants to make a difference.

Brian Nichols  9:17  
They'll say, what do you what are your what's your registered position again? And you'll say a libertarian, they'll say, oh, what? And then that gives you a chance to again show Hey, listen, I was this weird thing you'd never heard of, but you knew me, you knew my my values as a member of the community and as a business owner and as a thought leader and and now you're seeing the positive ramifications of a libertarian policy. Right. And that's where we're going to be able to win man that's it's building those those stories, building that resume of libertarian success stories, because we always get picked on right. Go to Somalia. Where's your libertarian country? Right. Let's be real. They kind of have a point. I mean, I don't mean to pick on them, but Justin Amash had somebody on Twitter They said name and libertarian country and he said, The United States of America and I said, well, it doesn't seem like it's too much of a glowing endorsement. You look at where we are right now in 2021. Right? Because we're, you know, how many trillion dollars in debt and we're on the precipice of losing our liberties? overnight. So, yeah, man, I think we do have a chance to to reach people. I think the Libertarian Party does have a chance to reach people. But it's not exclusively through, you know, one channel or the other. I think it has to be a very calculated multi pronged effort to make sure we're not wasting our time. We're not wasting our energy, and really make sure we're focusing on where we can actually put Liberty into action and make liberty when thanks for listening to The Brian Nichols Show. Find more episodes at the Brian Nichols Enjoying the audio version of the show, then you'll love our YouTube channel, be sure to head over there and subscribe. If you're new to The Brian Nichols Show, be sure to head to your favorite podcast catcher and click download all unplayed episodes so you don't miss one of our nearly 500 episodes that will be sure to leave you educated, enlightened and informed. If you got value from today's episode. Can you do me a favor and Edie the Brian Nichols forward slash support and leave us a $5 donation and by the way, have you get on the show a five star review yet? If not, head to Apple podcasts and tell folks why you listen to the program and don't forget to tell your friends to subscribe to follow me on social media at be Nichols liberty and again, if you'd be so kind please consider making a donation to The Brian Nichols Show at Brian forward slash support. The Brian Nichols Show is supported by viewers like you. Thank you to our patrons Darryl Schmitz, Michael Lima, Mitchell Mankiewicz Cody John's Trent Acosta and the we're libertarians network. Faced with an uncertain future many business owners and technology professionals don't have time needed to invest in their business technology strategies and as a result are afraid of their technology getting outdated and putting their company and customers information at risk. The digital future is already here. But with all different choices in the marketplace, it's difficult to know which one will be the best fit for you in your strategic vision. Imagine having the peace of mind that your business is backed by the right technology investments that are tailored for your specific needs. Hi, I'm Brian Nichols and I've helped countless business owners and technology professionals just like you helping you make informed decisions about what technologies are best to invest in for your business voice bandwidth, cybersecurity, business continuity juggling all the aspects of business technology is messy. Let me help at the Brian Nichols forward slash help and sign up for a free one on one consultation with yours truly to dig deep into where you see your company headed and how we can align your business technology towards those goals. Again, that's Brian Nichols forward slash ELP to get your simplified business technology started today

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