Joe Miller Rejects Libertarianism, Files To Run as Libertarian

Miller Runs as Libertarian, But Retains Conservative Platform

by Josh Guckert

In the 2010 Alaska Republican Senate primary, Joe Miller defeated incumbent Senator Lisa Murkowski, earning the Republican nomination. Unfortunately for Miller, Murkowski then waged a write-in campaign and retained her seat by a little more than 10,000 votes. Now in 2016, Miller will take another run at Murkowski’s seat—this time as a Libertarian. Miller also ran in the 2014 Republican Senate primary, losing to now-Senator Dan Sullivan.

Perhaps the strangest aspect of Miller’s run is that he explained he opposes many portions of the Libertarian platform: namely favoring same-sex marriage, drug legalization, and non-interventionist foreign policy. In other words, he’s still a conservative, and only “libertarian” in the sense that he shares some economic principles with the movement.

Even stranger, Miller is not supporting Gary Johnson for President, saying that “I’m not a Gary Johnson guy myself.” He has also pledged to caucus with the Republicans if elected.

A candidate like Miller certainly tests Libertarians. While he will likely have a better showing than any Libertarian Senate candidate in the history of Alaska, he would do so without being particularly libertarian at all. Though pragmatists within the Libertarian Party correctly advocate the merits of a “big tent,” Miller is very likely pushing the limits. If anything, perhaps the emergence of Miller may show some critics of Gary Johnson and William Weld what actually deserves the title of “Libertarian in name only.”

Watch Miller below:

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