It has been a surreal year!  When the Libertarian Party called me, about this time last year and asked me to run for Congress, it was put up or shut up time.  With the blessing of my better half, we boldly went forward into unchartered territory knowing that our lives would never be the same again. 

During this extraordinary year, we have come across so many countless wonderful people, freedom fighters really,  who also seem to have managed to unplug themselves from THE MATRIX, recognizing the ever increasing size & threat that is inherent in government, thus seeking to reduce it. Their sheer existence & fortitude made everything possible, for these were our first supporters.
What drives a person to become part of an organization that is facing the seemingly insurmountable task of breaking into a two party system that in actuality has become a one party system that is hell bent on keeping outsiders from interfering with their monopoly on power?   Each person has to answer that question for his/herself, but whatever the response, it is to be admired. 

For me, it’s simple:  Under present policies, I could no more be a Republican than I could a Democrat.   As any libertarian will tell you, the ideology of both parties is faulty because both desire you free in some areas, while a slave in others.   Democrats want your money.  Republicans want your soul. Libertarians want you to be free, period. And that is a dangerous thing for the all powerful and controlling state that has convinced the American people that they are already free, insignificant, or too busy, so as to not cause problems.  But I digress…

I was very fortunate that I was able to participate in various candidate forums and one debate, and that I am a fast learner! You can’t call yourself a politician (in a good way) until you’ve done at least one of those!  I also had the good fortune of traveling to the FREEDOM FEST convention in Las Vegas where I met so many patriots, not the least of whom was Steve Forbes, who only wished me luck on my campaign, when, of course, I could have used much more. 

Although everyone prayed for a miracle, the people deserve a public servant grounded in reality, and I knew, again barring a miracle, going into the election that despite my best efforts I would fall short in my attempt to get to Washington, this time at least.  The amount of money I was able to raise was insignificant compared to that of the incumbent which surpassed $2 million by latest estimates.  I wish I could have aired commercials in both languages and perpetually bombard the folks with literature as it appears to be the key to winning for the Democratic Party of California.  

Another big obstacle is that the mainstream media barely acknowledges any other candidates who are not Republican or Democrat in most races thereby further giving the illusion to their viewers that their only choice is between dumb & dumber. The truth is, not only are these media companies huge donors to the current one party dictatorship, but they are part of the status quo and have no interest in allowing a third voice (perhaps, god forbid, a rational one) into the alleged two sided drama their subscribers tune into every hour of every day.

Nevertheless, I slowly woke on the day after the election to the news that I had earned 8% of the vote in my race, not only a record for my district, but a state & national record for a three party race. The Republican candidate, a charming young chap named Merlin Froyd had received 22.5% of the vote, and the incumbent garnered almost 70%. Clearly, there is a problem in my district when that many people award a 15th term to an incumbent in a time that is rabidly anti-incumbent across the nation, especially towards the incumbent’s own party.    Did anyone even see the massacre that was the debate? What is going on in California, more specifically, in my district that caused this to happen?  I have taken these days after the election to reflect and this is what I have concluded:

First, let’s look at the numbers.  There are approximately 243,000 registered voters in the 28th district, which was drawn by the incumbent and his brother.  143,000, not surprisingly, are Democrats.  43,000 are Republicans.   1,300 are Libertarians.   The Democrat incumbent received 83,855 votes, the GOP candidate, 27,023, and me, 9,445.  As a percentage of total registered party voters, I blew the other two candidates away!   59%, 63%, 727%, respectively.

Nevertheless, the numbers also tell you that we are inundated with Democrats, and to dethrone them will take a monumental effort and a severe de-programming campaign.  However, I am hopeful, because the numbers also reveal that that there are 57,000 registered voters that have not fallen, at least not openly, for the two party monte.  These are people who are ripe for the libertarian message and must be reached.

Secondly, we cannot discount the impact of the Latino vote in a majority Latino district. I make no pretenses that my last name alone did not garner a substantial amount of the Hispanic vote who like any other ethnic group, all things being equal & of limited knowledge, will vote for one of their own. Thus, given the demographics of the district, being a Latino candidate more than likely gave me an advantage in many precincts.  Nonetheless, this Latino belongs to a different party than the one they have been told over and over again is looking out for them, and like most folks are suspicious of what they don’t know.   Couple that with the truth that Latinos are probably the most apathetic of all the major ethnic groups in regards to voting, and we arrive at 8% of the vote by a Hispanic candidate in a majority Hispanic district.  Doesn’t seem like much now…

Curiously, what they do know, or at least believe, is that Republicans are anti-legalization/amnesty and since the vast majority of the people who are in need of legalizing happen to be Hispanic, then they must be anti-Latino as well.  At least, that’s what they’re pushing on the Spanish news night after night.  And never mind the fact, that elected state officials have little power if any over immigration laws, despite what Gov. Brewer of Arizona may think.  In any event, until there is some type of amnesty, an (R) after your name is the kiss of death here in the San Fernando Valley, witnessed by the paltry 22% obtained by my Republican rival who campaigned actively.  

So what have we learned?  We have learned that unless you are a Democrat, the odds are stacked against you, severely.  But perhaps more importantly, we have learned that the task is daunting, but certainly not impossible.   The redistricting process which is set to begin in a few months should bring about newer, less partisan districts and we will have to adjust our sail accordingly as we continue on our journey towards a freer society.

For my part, as I stated at the beginning of this piece, this process has changed me forever and I have lost all fear of defending libertarian principles anytime, and any place.  Make no mistake.  From where I stand, the GOP has lost all credibility with the people.  Thus, I will continue to work tirelessly to make the Libertarian Party a major party in California with the goal of obtaining representation in all levels of government.  We are this country’s last hope for fiscal sanity and freedom.    And in that, I have found my purpose.

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