Libertarian Johnson Using Indy Media To Level The FieldMay 24, 2012Posted in Blog, News
By Mark Wachtler
May 23, 2012. Santa Fe. Libertarian Party Presidential candidate Gary Johnson may not have a billion dollars in his campaign chest like President Obama will soon have. Johnson also doesn’t have super PACs and their billion dollars from mysterious, secret sources like Mitt Romney will have. Neither will the former New Mexico Governor receive any positive coverage from the Wall Street owned American media outlets. But in this category, the underdog Presidential candidate has one secret weapon – independent media.
Mainstream media and Johnson’s party switch
It’s no secret that the libertarian former Governor has been the victim of a mainstream media black-out in the US. That was apparent when he and Michigan Congressman Thad McCotter (R-MI) were the only 2 Republican Presidential candidates purposely left off of polls, and subsequently left out of the nationally televised debates. The actions and decisions on the part of the RNC and national news outlets seemed peculiar at the time, considering their polls excluded a Congressman and former Governor, but included people who aren’t politicians, candidates or in some cases, even Republicans. Herman Cain, Sarah Palin and Donald Trump are prime examples.
For more information on the media black-out of Gary Johnson’s Presidential campaign, read the Sept. 2011 article, ‘CNN changing Election Outcome’.
Just prior to Christmas, Johnson had a choice to make. With no media coverage, no inclusion in the polls and no invitation to the nationally-televised Republican debates, the popular, former 2-term New Mexico Governor said farewell to the GOP and switched to the Libertarian Party. The candidate knew he could continue his Presidential campaign and settle within a party that not only fit his strong beliefs in freedom and liberty, but a party that wanted him.
Read the Whiteout Press article, ‘Johnson rocks GOP with switch to Libertarian Party’ for details.
Here comes the cavalry – independent media
With a national media black-out mostly still in place, it now falls to ‘independents’ to shine a light on Presidential candidate Gary Johnson. That includes not just independent voters, but independent media as well.
Since receiving the Libertarian Party nomination earlier this month, Johnson has noticed at least a slight bump in his media coverage, not from the sources one might expect however. Outlets like C-SPAN, Newsweek, Caputo and a host of local radio shows have recently covered the rising star of America’s libertarian and Constitutionalist voter blocks. But the major TV and cable networks are conspicuously absent.
“That news coverage certainly helps, but you know as well as I that we cannot depend on the media elite to get our message out and let frustrated voters know that there will be a real choice in November,” Gary Johnson recently told a group of his supporters, “a choice that reflects their own views of liberty - freedom from a government that does too much and spends too much.” Johnson went on to explain, “We cannot wait for someone else, like the news media, to carry our message. We have to do it ourselves.”
Giving a little more detail on the campaign’s strategy, Gary Johnson announced, “Now the real work begins. We have to reach voters in key states, and we have to reach them directly – not through the whims and biases of the news media.” Going straight to the point, the Libertarian Presidential nominee explained, “In short, we have to buy it - advertising, direct mail, social media tools. And we have to step up our grass-roots efforts.”
The Johnson campaign periodically releases summaries of the past week’s press coverage. It’s always interesting to see the list of little-known media outlets covering the Johnson campaign. This author is proud to report that fellow Examiner.com journalists, their local outlets, and even national Examiner columns like this one, are always among the media sources giving Gary Johnson and his campaign fair and equal coverage. Independent media outlets like Examiner however are few and far between.
A look at the Johnson campaign’s most recent release of news coverage shows little sign of the corporate media black-out abating. The release touts press coverage from news outlets such as the Richmond Times-Dispatch, Uncovered Politics, Elizabethan Star, A Little Rebellion, Common Sense, biz1190 business news, New Mexico Watchdog.org, the New York Observer, and as always, Examiner.com.
Gary Johnson’s censored message
Some readers are already asking themselves, ‘Why is the mainstream media blacking-out the campaign of a successful and popular former Governor?’ According to Gary Johnson, and many other Presidential candidates from other opposition parties, the corporate-owned American media will benefit financially regardless of which candidate wins – Obama or Romney. That can’t be said if any of the opposition party candidates win the race for the White House such as Johnson the Libertarian, Virgil Goode the Constitution Party nominee or Dr. Jill Stein of the Green Party.
As Gary Johnson points out, “On issue after issue, when you look past the rhetoric, there really isn’t a great deal of daylight between the Democrat Obama and the Republican Romney. And America is looking for daylight.” Johnson goes on to illustrate his argument by presenting a brief list of examples:
Barack Obama and Mitt Romney support the Patriot Act. Gary Johnson supports its repeal.
Barack Obama and Mitt Romney will keep waging war in Afghanistan. Johnson will get the US out immediately.
Neither Obama nor Romney has proposed actually cutting government spending. The fiscal conservative Johnson proposes a balanced budget in 2013.
Mitt Romney, in a speech at Liberty University last week, repeated that he is against marriage equality. Barack Obama now says he supports gay marriage, but says he will leave it up to the States. The Libertarian Party’s Johnson believes the right to marry under the law is a Constitutionally-protected right the federal government is obligated to defend.
Both Obama and Romney have pledged to continue the failed War on Drugs – even if it means sending federal marshals to shut down medical marijuana businesses operating legally under state law. Johnson has pledged to not only call off the marshals, but legalize marijuana.
On issue after issue affecting the daily lives of all Americans – civil rights, war, deficit spending, debt, religious and lifestyle freedom, marijuana – Gary Johnson reminds us that the Democrat Obama and the Republican Romney have similar or identical positions, while the Libertarian Gary Johnson stands alone, opposed to Washington’s status quo.
While the Libertarian Party has propelled itself to the third largest political party in the US and its candidates will most-likely have nation-wide ballot access, Gary Johnson still finds it nearly impossible to introduce himself to American voters. And that’s where independent news outlets, whether small like Common Sense and Whiteout Press or large like C-SPAN and Examiner, will attempt to level the playing field.