Weld Versus The Libertarians: Weld Under Fire For Renewed Pro-Hillary Comments and Questions Of Commitment

During the Libertarian convention, I was asked how libertarians generally felt about Gary Johnson’s preferred running mate, former Massachusetts government William Weld.  At the time, I said that Weld made for a remarkably strong ticket for the Libertarians and broadens the base for libertarians but that there was widespread suspicion that Weld did not have libertarian values in his DNA.  Many resented the view that the Libertarian party is treated as a back stop for Republicans and others viewed Weld as a classic establishment figure, including his well-known friendship with Hillary Clinton.  To make matters worse, Carl Bernstein and others who were quoted as saying that Weld was considering withdrawing because he did not want to hurt Clinton’s chances against Donald Trump.  He denied that he was withdrawing. However, this week, those past suspicions are in full rage on libertarian sites after the Boston Globe reported that Weld had told reporters that he was going to focus on trashing Trump and again saying how he thought Hillary Clinton is remarkably well qualified to be president.  Weld has again denied the stories, but he has repeatedly stated his admiration for Clinton.  The result is a total mess for libertarians who hoped that this could be the year that the ticket could make it to one of the presidential debates.

Weld brought a needed element to the Libertarian base in broadening the appeal. Many of us have libertarian values but can differ on some issues. Johnson and Weld show that such principled and sometimes nuanced differences in their views. For example, you can differ on the merits of policies but agree on the limited role of the courts. You can differ on climate change but agree on the need for properly enacted solutions or generally favor market approaches when possible. For that reason, I think Weld was an important step for the party if it wants to emerge as a true and viable option politically on the national scale. However, the recent controversy has reignited this tension and the uncertainty of some libertarians.

The Boston Globe reported that Weld told its reporters that he was changing his focus to campaigning against Donald Trump and that he did not want the Libertarian ticket to undermine efforts by Clinton to defeat Trump.  The response on the Internet was thunderous.  Weld critics immediately proclaimed that he was showing his true colors and returning to the establishment fold.  Some even suggested that Weld wanted a position with Clinton.  There was no support for claiming such  quid pro quo but it was the rage.  However, it is clear that Weld stated recently that “I’m not sure anybody is more qualified than Hillary Clinton to be president of the United States.”  That is pretty awkward when you are supposedly the vice presidential candidate supporting a different person for president.

To make matters worse, the Globe reported that Weld stated that “it would be fun to participate” in an effort to “come up with a new playbook” for the Republican Party after the 2016 elections.   He also is quoted as saying that he  is “not going to drop [Libertarians] this year.”  Those quotations, which have not been denied, has been used by many critics to charge again that Weld’s appearance on the ticket is merely a marriage of convenience and that he does not view himself as a libertarian.

Weld has not denied many of these quotes but insisted that the article misrepresented his intentions and added “Let there be no doubt. I am the Libertarian nominee for Vice-President, proudly running with Gov. Gary Johnson, and both Gary and I will be running hard and making our case right up until the polls close on November 8. Our ambition is to serve our country.”

90 thoughts on “Weld Versus The Libertarians: Weld Under Fire For Renewed Pro-Hillary Comments and Questions Of Commitment”

  1. Weld said Clinton is most qualified to be president. Therefore Weld should resign immediately as VP and get cracking working opening and upfront for his candidate of choice. If he doesn’t resign, he should be booted out immediately.

    If Johnson drops his pro TPP stance and kicks out Weld, I believe he could get many people to vote for him.

    I do think this election is thoroughly fixed. I would love Johnson to prove me wrong but ditching this loser and his own stupidity in supporting the TPP. Get some good foreign policy advisers on board and get cracking as a real candidate.

    1. He didn’t say Hillary was the most qualified person to be president.
      He said “not sure anybody is more qualified than Hillary Clinton to be president of the United States”

      There is a difference that kludgier minds can’t see the distinction between.

      If you really want to see his actual position and words from his mouth, see his most interview on the matter:

      1. Taking the correction at face value; if he’s “not sure”, then his lack of judgment should immediately disqualify him.

        1. He is not sure of a negative.
          You can be not sure of something not true, without it being an affirmative statement of anything.
          It’s not a lack of judgment, it is a caution to rush to judgment.

  2. This is Weld being Weld. It’s doubtful the man’s ever manifested an ounce of loyalty to anyone. Sometimes this coincides with an act of integrity (Weld resigned as Assistant Attorney-General for the Criminal Division in 1987 because he had come to the conclusion that Edwin Meese had committed crimes worth securing an indictment for, something a special prosecutor declined to do), but what it usually means is shivving people in various ways, expecting benefits from your social matrix while abandoning and trashing the human beings within it. And, it’s a reasonable inference that he does this because he’s a deeply arrogant man who just expects the peasants to give the seigneur his due. (It’s extended to his domestic life as well, as his wife discovered when he put her out on the curb a propos of nothing in particular, a dreadful thing to do to a woman in her 50s who isn’t a drunk or a virago, and something ordinary men very seldom do).

    His admiration for HRC is another indication of his deficient character. He sees virtue in social position and educational credentials.

  3. Any chance of Johnson winning vanished when he failed to gather enough support to make the presidential debates. It’s just a protest vote at this point.

  4. If your not voting for the rule of law then you are part of the problem. Ask yourself, of all the candidates, which one has proven (under oath) they will not subordinate their office to the rule of law and respect the separation of powers? Then you have to vote for the one who has yet to take the oath and if that person also proves unwilling to honor the oath, impeach them or do not reelect them.

    That’s OUR obligation as citizens.

  5. As a card carrying Libertarian, I find this to be the year of missed opportunity. I went to our convention, I heard Gary speak. The Johnson/Weld ticket is kind of libertarian. Then again Clinton is kind of Democrat, Trump is sort of Republican and Bernie was not really a Democrat.

    We suffered from the same thing that other parties suffered from, the disease of name recognition. Weld was a give-me. Gary picked him. We have no major political machine like the other parties. .

    I don’t like Weld or Johnson very much. The others are unthinkable. Hillary’s a hawk, No one really knows what Trump is. Socialism kills.

    I’m voting for that 5% for federal recognition. Then I’m crawling under the bed and hoping for the best.

      1. I agree with you Nick, agreeing with mostlymarie.
        A great comment, a year of lost opportunity for the Libertarians.
        It didn’t take much this cycle to totally trounce the demopublicans, just a presidential poise and stance of directed leadership.
        Just that personal presence alone would have been enough take the moral high ground for most voters who don’t drill down to the nitty-gritties.
        There is little to hang one’s sense of alliance on the picks of all the parties frontrunners, they all seem flawed and barely seem to have any conviction in their presentations or journey to the office of president.
        I will vote Gary Johnson more for what he stands-in for, than the man himself.

        1. Could have been a great year for Ron Paul as a libertarian. He wouldn’t be perceived as a ship-jumper, everyone knows where his heart is anyway. He is what we all need right now, a thinking person. Oh well… Then again, he is a person with ideals… so I don’t know if that fits in with American government.

          1. A student of Paul offered that he seemed like the sort of person who believes conspiracy theories, but is constrained from sounding wacky because in his case, the conspiracy theories have to be consistent with libertarian ideology, and libertarianism seldom sustains conspiracy theories.

            We know his heart is mad for destructive monetary nostrums and foreign relations fantasy.

            1. I don’t know, when we hear what our gov is up to most of the time, I find it to be “truth stranger than ficiton.”

              1. I’m not aware of any notable colony of conspiracy buffs who have been proven correct. The closest you get concerns infiltration of federal agencies by Soviet agents in the peri-war period. That was freely acknowledged by federal agencies at the time, though only a modest number of agents were publicly exposed. The John Birch Society’s fantasies remain just that, as do those of Kennedy Assassination aficionados, King Assassination aficionados, 9/11 truthers &c. Does anyone even remember what the Christic Institute was pushing? The CIA, the agency which hired Aldrich Ames and promoted him several times (even though he manifested telltale signs of a man with esoteric income sources), is imputed to have almost magical powers.

        2. I will vote Gary Johnson more for what he stands-in for, than the man himself.

          What he stands for is banal business Republican yap leavened with the standard LP kvetch about the drug laws. Stick a fork deep in him.

  6. Gary Johnson and Bill Weld are political opportunists who are exploiting the Libertarian Party to further their own ambitions. They care nothing about liberty, free markets, private property rights and freedom of association, which are the basic principles of the LP.

    It was the LP convention attendees who “sold out” and voted for Johnson for the purpose of Johnson’s “name recognition” helping to elevate the LP to a more nationally recognizable presence. However, what they have accomplished is making a laughing stock out of the LP, and the damage is probably irreparable. The Libertarian Party ought to disband, especially because after 45 years it has not gotten anywhere in these elections.

    1. The practical relevance in the ‘laughing stock’ element here is completely relative.
      Donald Trump has made a laughing stock of the Republican party.
      Hillary Clinton has made a “cringe & shudder” stock of the Democratic party.

      And dare I say, that many of the prior Libertarian candidates for president, as well as most of the other option the libertarians had for nomination, would have been of equal or worse laughing stock for the Libertarians this year.

      That element is moderated by the professional prestige of the Libertarians’ pick. Overall politically this was the best libertarian ticket we have had, and the best time to have had them, given the choices the major parties have offered.

  7. http://www.citypages.com/news/donald-trumps-fondness-for-chinese-steel-feels-like-betrayal-on-the-iron-range/396050681“Two days ago, Newsweek published an investigation showing that Trump has always favored Chinese steel for his casinos and hotels.

    John Rebrovich, United Steelworkers representative from Hibbing, says it was only a matter of time before Trump was exposed as a charlatan.

    While Rebrovich’s friends and neighbors may have once found hope in the candidate, Trump has been quietly subverting them all along. News spreads fast in small towns, Rebrovich says. Everywhere he goes now, people are talking about how they feel lied to.” .

  8. All this don’t amount to a pinch of coonsh*t. Either Trump or Clinton becomes the next President. The task at had is damage control. Clinton will do the least damage. Trump is incompetent, only a third of his businesses have succeeded, a third failed miserably, and a third are treading water. The guy’s a fear monger targeting whiners. The only changes in this dysfunctional American system of dog and pony shows and illusion will come from the bottom. Elect Governors and state officials who do not belong to the two parties. This is how it was done in Canada and more successful democracies. Americans have got to pull their collective heads out of their collective rectums and look outside this narcissistic box. A big military does not equate to a real democracy.

  9. Golly, I’m getting the distinct impression the establishment elitists, Wall St., Dem, Rep and now 3rd party, will sell their souls to Satan in order to elect her. If we are to accept God may be female, it would make sense because we can see Satan is female, w/ a horn dog husband.

  10. The Libertarian ticket has no chance of actually winning this election; however, if they garner 5% of the vote, they will be eligible for federal funds for the next election. For this reason alone, many are considering a vote for Johnson/Weld.

    1. Well that great, now I know that you can be counted on to vote for him.
      Politicians with the best judgment should be voted into office.

  11. William Weld has realized what many newspapers have concluded: Donald Trump is a serious threat to America’s well-being. We can’t have a President sending crazy tweets in the dead of night; fat-shaming women or dissing perceived enemies. America can’t wake up to learn President Trump tweeted something ‘really’ outrageous an hour before dawn. We don’t want all-day discussions, on cable news networks, concerning vile insults the President made. Discussions like that could spook the markets and alienate our allies.

    1. Peter Hill, don’t you realize that (at least on this Blog) your criticism of Trump makes you an apologist for ALL the crimes that “Her Heinous” Hillary has ever committed, both in this life and in her previous lives (including the wearing of ugly pantsuits, eating of babies, and obstruction of justice)? It also means that you TOTALLY SUPPORT her “Pay to Play” Foundation and her lesbian lovers, and that you must be a Social Justice Warrior who always lies and never tells the truth. All this because you don’t want Trump to be president under any circumstances. Oh, and you may also have cooties.

      Nick, did I miss anything?

      1. You did not miss anything. Hillary partisans are at home with what Hillary does, though they pretend for sake of argument that she isn’t guilty of anything and it’s just the ‘right wing noise machine’. The problem really, is that the Democratic Party is a criminal organization. About 3/4 of its supporters are only weakly engaged with civic life and the remainder are largely at peace with the criminality.

  12. His comments could cause Weld War I, Weld War II, and Weld War III all at the same time.

  13. He is hardly running, not running hard. Bernie sold out, now this guy. Will it never end.

    1. Paul, I do not believe Bernie sold out — the Clintons and the DNC kneecapped him. And I think he knew it was gonna happen but he got out his message: HRC is toxic

      1. Bernie waited 50 years to join the Democratic party. Then he expected party leaders to make him their candidate. And when they showed reluctance his campaign demonized super delegates. Creating a self-fullfilliing prophesy where the party had good reason to dislike Sanders. Bernie’s whole campaign was like a hostile takeover attempt.

        1. Partisan Democrats see it as a hostile takeover attempt because Sanders is a straight-up guy and Hilligula is criminal, and partisan Democrats admire criminals.

          1. Don’t see it as a hostile takeover but an attempt to seriously turn the democratic party to the left. My neighbor was a national bernie delegate and he now has a Clinton sign in his yard. His main issue is national healthcare. Hopefully Obamacare can evolve into. Medicare for all.

      2. Paul is right. Bernie did sell out AND the DNC did kneecap him AND he knew (more or less) that it was going to happen. More or less because one of the honest to goodness surprises he actually had to deal with was the lengths Hillary and the Honorable Debbie Wasserman Shultz would go to, to get the hatchet job done. Bernie got mad which is main reason he had any grit at all during the debates. The other surprise was the extent to which the American public (of all ages in spite of what the MSM report) where desperate for real change in their lives and welcomed him with desperate hope. There is no doubt he was deeply affected – for a while. This latter may have been the one -short lived- regret he had when the time came to be a professional consummate politician and sell them all out for a few soon to be broken “liberal” noises with lawyer like “outs” in every sentence from the Clinton camp.

        It’s difficult to argue that Bernie didn’t sell out unless one means he never bought in in the first place. Sander’s campaign turned out to be an extended mirror reflection of what he did in 2010 when a Dem-0-Rat controlled house and a Demo-0-Rat controlled Senate passed a bill to extend the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy. Sanders, ahem…, courageously got up on a Friday afternoon in front of an empty chamber (except for one lone camera man) and ranted on and on about what a mistake this extension was. Then he went home and got some well needed rest and forgot all about it – his credentials being properly rubbed and gleaming. The “event” was floated in the news as a “filibuster” but of course was nothing of the sort.

        His bid for the nomination was much the same thing, except for a brief period where the public simply carried him aloft and the most compelling evidence is the totally unnecessary degree to which he capitulated. His regard for the Democrat (I will no longer use the softer, “Democratic” term) party goes beyond reason and rational – and fits squarely within the frame work of someone who will sell out to keep on going. But of course continuing the charade to fight another day is really just continuing the charade with a fantasy covered by a fig leaf.

      3. Bernie and Weld both have their eyes on the future. Bernie will get a powerful committee should the dems take over the senate, and Weld is considering running for the senate in MA. Neither want to be blamed for electing the populist authoritarian.

        1. Weld is 72 years old and easily bored. He’s not running for Congress.

            1. When? Republicans in Massachusetts tend to be trimmers like Scott Brown, not liberals. Weld was not a liberal in the mold of Francis Sargent. To the extent he has an ideology, it’s country-club-attitude. The last liberal Republican in Massachusetts elected to an office more august than mayor or state legislator was Silvio Conte. Silvio Conte died in 1991.

            2. We do like our liberal/sane Republicans up here in Massachusetts–but Weld moved to New York more than a decade ago. Republican Charlie Baker, our current governor, is very popular–and he is not a right-winger. He is sensible and works well with Democrats.

            1. Trump owns a business which employs 22,000 people. Trump took the Republican presidential nomination on his first foray into electoral politics. That’s plenty sharp.

                1. No, you fantasize Weld would be trouncing Hilligula. Weld’s never run for office outside of Massachusetts and he couldn’t beat John Kerry in Massachusetts.

      1. It may be harsh, but I agree with this. I have read the opinion, from someone exceptional at getting to the truth, that Warren is a conservative at heart who is scrupulously honest and therefore is holding Wall Street and the giant international banks to account for blatantly illegal activities such as making extensive money laundering operations for known drug cartels. Anyway, the point was that liberal’s expectations of Warren were askew, not Warren being a sell-out.

        But for much the same reason as Sanders; that is, the degree to which she took up the Clinton banner, I just can’t buy it. I’ll grant Warren has conservative credentials (not a negative). But if one is going to argue that this is a conservative at heart who has taken up the Democrat banner because of rampant corruption, it flies in the face of logic to argue she would champion the most corrupt candidate ever to run for President.

  14. As I have stated many times – Johnson is a fake Libertarian as he supports the TPP. No surprise that Weld is all about HRC. Both, IMO, are supported by Soros to pull votes off Trump. Even Ron Paul thinks that Jill Stein is a better candidate than Johnson regarding foreign polic.

    1. Have you read the Cato Institute’s lukewarm support for the TPP?
      They have a full analysis of the 5000 page document, and they say on the average it rates a 6 on a scale of 1 to ten.
      There are a lot of provisions in the TPP that erase tariffs.

      1. Tariffs are now too low to be consequential, TPP or no TPP. Read Jagdish Bhagwati. A true free trade treaty would be about 10 pages long. These treaties are the way they are because they delve into extraneous matters and contain a boatload of special-interest carve-outs.

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