I am excited to announce that I have joined the Mark Rutherford For Chair team, and will be volunteering for him at the Libertarian National Convention in Las Vegas some two weeks from now.
My role will be that of Floor Whip. The job entails being assigned several states, and then working to drive votes from those states' delegations to Mark.
One thing I really like about the Libertarian National Conventions is that things are very rarely decided before the voting starts. These are real conventions- not the coronations that the Rs & Ds host. Gary Johnson is the frontrunner for the presidential nomination, but I've been at conventions where the frontrunner was surprised very late in the day (e.g.: when Michael Badnarik overcame Gary Nolan in 2004). The Chair elections are always contentious. This one will be no different, as Mark needs to unseat current Chair Mark Hinkle, so I will have to work to earn votes for him.
Contentious conventions are electric. That 2004 event was everything we read about in history books, minus the smoky back room. In that election, Nolan was the frontrunner, but Aaron Russo was thought to be a very strong second. Badnarik gave the performance of a lifetime in the debate, and when the first ballot votes were revealed, all three were within 12 votes of each other. The place exploded with a flurry of activity, as conventioneers ran to their state or regional caucuses, and whips for the candidates worked each group for votes in the suddenly new landscape.
Check out the CSPAN video of the 2004 convention: At the 4:01:00 (that's the 4-hour mark) the cameras found the Region 3 caucus, and delegates took to a chair to speak in favor of either of the three candidates. I took my turn at the 4:05:20 mark to stand on a chair before our caucus to speak on behalf of Nolan. Afterwards, Rutherford thanked the caucus and urged them to vote their conscience.
I am hoping that when the 2012 Convention votes its conscience for Chair, it selects Mark Rutherford.