First, the good news.
Gary Johnson was made the LP's nominee for President of the United States on the 1st ballot, overwhelmingly. This was very satisfying, as he has a proven executive record as Governor of New Mexico. Johnson was a Republican then, but he governed as a libertarian. What does that mean? He actually used the veto pen. From wikipedia:
As governor, Johnson followed a strict small government approach. According to former New Mexico Republican National Committee member Mickey D. Barnett, "Any time someone approached him about legislation for some purpose, his first response always was to ask if government should be involved in that to begin with." He vetoed 200 of 424 bills in his first six months in office – a national record of 48% of all legislation – and used the line-item veto on most remaining bills.
The usual saw is that a libertarian would end up with the area of governance sinking into the earth's core. Two of his vetoes were over-ridden. The rest held up. Curiously, New Mexico was not swallowed into the abyss. I guess the vetoed bills weren't really that important after all. Johnson was re-elected, and left the state with a surplus.
Johnson doesn't shy away from controversial issues, but nor does he lead with them. He is personable and energetic. I love his comebacks on the drug issues, being that he doesn't even consume caffeine or alcohol, and has been an ironman triathlete. If he gets into the debates, he will fare very well.
Me & Gary Johnson, after his nomination. I'm holding his obligatory 'book written by candidate for president', and wearing my delegate credentials.
(Part 2 will pick up with the election for LNC Chair)