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Third Party Candidate Debate: Liveblog

So, you’ve seen what the other two parties have to offer and you’re not impressed.  Or you’re horrified by the reliance and inevitable abuse of drones in spite of the fact that your elderly relatives think they’re great and will protect us from the terrorists.  Or you’re a liberal Democrat in Exile and you need to put your party in time-out until it gets the message that you’re sick and tired of being run over by the bus.

This year may be the year that a third party has a breakaway.  You never know.  The Pirate Party did pretty well in Germany last year.  So well in fact that the party itself was surprised.  It’s going to be a long hard slog to relevancy and there may be another party out there that has yet to be formed.

But tonight is their night.  This is the liveblog for the Third Party Candidate’s Debate moderated by Larry King.  You can catch it here on C-Span.  There are four candidates participating tonight:

Jill Stein-  The Green Party

Rocky Anderson – The Justice Party

Gary Johnson – The Libertarian Party

Virgil Goode- The Constitution Party

I’m not going to spell out all of their names while I’m commenting so I’m planning to just use the first initial of their last name.

No need for disclaimer tonight.  I am *definitely* voting for one of these people.  I’m just not saying which one.

So, go get yourself a glass of wine or a cup of hot spiced cider and get ready to give these four people the attention they deserve.

Ready, set, go!

161 Responses

  1. Whoo-hoo! All vpices SHOULD be heard. It is a noble cause

  2. Only Johnson is on my ballot so this debate is going to help me decide if I write in or not.

    • Dang Kansas! They don’t want to give you a left of center choice I guess.

      • Nah, the candidates were slackers. We’ve only got 7 electoral votes and who gives a sh!t about that?

        • Some states are harder to get on the ballot than others.

        • Eliminating the electoral college and going to a straight up popular vote might change that for some of the less populated areas because it wouldn’t be a matter of states in that scenario. I believe the change requires a Constitutional amendment.

          • Eliminating the Electoral College outright does require a constitutional amendment. However, it is left up to each state as to how they apply their electors. This is why the National Popular Vote movement is doable and how Maine and Nebraska are able to split their electoral votes.

          • Seth:

            True. A lot less trouble than a Constitutional amendment, but not as fixed.

  3. 3-2-1…

  4. Hi, everybody! Tell us where you’re blogging from. I’ll go first: Central New Jersey

  5. Ok, she’s no natural speaker but I like what she’s saying.

  6. Wow, this is like a real debate.

  7. Jill Stein! Damn! If only she weren’t a Green Party nominee

  8. Yay, Rocky! Our first mormon of the night!

  9. Yay, Virgil!

  10. Yay, Gary!

  11. S: Doesn’t enlarge our democracy. So far she hasn’t hit the main argument- it can be gamed by the largest two parties.

  12. I’m not wild about the Party system. Not sure about the top 2 primary issue.

  13. S: Rambling. She needs to be more concise. She seems nervous, a bit like Miss South Carolina.

  14. A: Yep, Rocky nails it. The two parties will exclude everyone else.

  15. A. is a bit more comfortable at this political shtick. As much as people hate politicians, we need people with experience.

  16. A. makes a good point about both parties ignoring poverty

  17. I’ve had it with the Democratic party too

  18. Whew! “I’ve had it with the Democratic Party”

  19. G: Good opening remarks.

  20. G: “I didn’t vote for the Democrats spending money like crazy”

  21. G: Oh, Gawd, not another state’s rights person.

  22. J: “I was a Republican but I wasn’t one of them. No, I wasn’t one of those people. Nope, not me. Ha-ha! See? I’m not a Republican. And I’m pro-choice but states need to make their own decisions, amiright?”

  23. J: “Yeah! Let’s get rid of Medicare! Boooyah!”

  24. S: I think she needs to actually win an election. It makes a difference.
    Getting arrested does not make you a politician.

    • But I’m not sure being Mayor is that much more experience.

      • Bloomberg was considering running. I’d feel more comfortable with a mayor than a congressman.
        But I think you need to run and win *something* before you run for president.

        • Agreed. (wow. Bloomberg. I forgot)

          • Bloomberg bought his elections at $150 per vote. Why should that count as experience, beats me.

          • He still had to run the city. I suspect he knows a little something about how executive governance works and how to direct departments. Even a little bit of experience makes a difference if you have familiarity with how things are run, what an governing executive does, how to prepare budgets, manage emergencies, etc. Experience does help. Going from Mayor to governor or president is simply a matter of scale. It’s also why Hillary was better qualified than Obama. She was in the Governor’s mansion in Arkansas for 8 years and the White House for 8. She worked on projects (healthcare, SCHIP), went on foreign policy tours and met with many state leaders. Her resume made her vastly more experienced.

        • Michael Let’s-Change-the-Rules-Everybody-Voted-for Bloomberg? Michael NYC Police Bloomberg? Well, at least you know up front what you’re getting: it would be hard to lie about his record at this point. But I would take him as an extension of the Bush-Obama civil no liberties policies–altho one does wonder how much further that line can be extended before someone gets the idea to just declare a suspension of the Constitution and institution of presidential rulership, in the name of public safety, of course.

          I’ve seen Jill Stein described as a terrible public speaker. Too bad so much is laid on appearances, but candidates do have to account for the realities of the political environment.

          • Ahem, I’ve seen many presentations in my life and IMHO, the best speakers know their subjects like the back of their hands. They’ve studied it, asked the right questions, done their homework and thought about the big picture. That gives you confidence and practice. We tend to underestimate preparation and chalk up poor presentation to not being a good speaker. But I’ll bet if you asked Stein about medicine, she’d blow your socks off. In fact, her response to the question about the dangers of marijuana shows exactly my point. It was brilliant because she really understands this material.
            What Jill Stein needs is some political seasoning and some policy experience. Then she will be a true competitor and her speaking skills will be amazing.

  25. A: The party duopoly is strangling democracy. Well, at least his argument makes sense.

  26. Dang, I missed Goode’s rebuttal

  27. J: NASCAR jackets?
    He’s right about more authoritarianism. Anti-drone. check.
    But then he ruins it with the deficit hawkery

  28. NO, NO, NO! You are never supposed to yield to your opponent, Jill.

  29. This drug thing hits home tonight. Today’s funeral was due to a drug related death.

    • That’s so sad for someone so young.

      • We need something besides prison and death to handle the problem.

        • We have lots of other things besides prison and death. Unfortunately they don’t often work. Prison is often that last gasp “bottom” someone has to fall to before death is the only thing left. People who end up in prison have probably gone to rehab many times. This idea that we just lock people up instead of giving them the chance to get help is a myth. The problem is the drugs and the addicts, not the war on drugs IMO. My opinion is based on years of intimate knowledge with this topic.
          I did not see this debate. Wish I had but the discussion about drugs probably would have pissed me off. I can’t take the Green party or the Libertarians seriously on this topic. = (

          • I disagree that we don’t just throw the book at people before we help them. My cousin is a case in point. What the system did to him was awful. He eventually committed suicide because the justice system trapped him into a situation that was impossible to climb out of. He had a mountain of legal bills, jail, parole, no job, was forced out of his home and was on a waiting list for rehab. Please don’t tell me that we’re too nice to people with addiction problems. It’s simply not true.

  30. Opening statement. Pay attention, Jill.

  31. Good points, Jill. “A choice not bought and paid for by Wall Street”

  32. NO, NO, NO, Jill! You were on a roll, just keep on talking over the moderator. Seriously

  33. Loving Rocky.

  34. Rocky: Good points on income inequality. Good points on poverty.
    He links Bush with Obama, unilateral presidency, the NDAA.
    Damn, he only has two minutes.

  35. Virgil: He can count like Obama and Romney!
    Sounds like another deficit hawk.
    Term limits.

    Um, not sure this is working for me. Something’s missing

  36. Gary: Sounds like he’s throwing stuff out to see what sticks
    Most of this stuff is good but I don’t see a worldview that wants to alleviate income inequality.

  37. J: Oh, PLEASE, Gary. You clearly have no idea how to get us out of a depression. Go back to the Republican party, Gary

  38. A: War on drugs is waste of money. I agree. Abusers need rehabilitation not mandatory sentencing.

  39. A: We jail too many people for drug abuse. It does seem a little bit like an overreaction

  40. G: I want a balanced budget but I want to throw the book at pot smokers. $12 billion is not insignificant.
    Ok, let’s see here. No pot and no contraception. Okay.
    Moving right along

  41. J: Legalize marijuana now! Whoo-hoo! Fire up!
    (No, Brooke, no pot for you.)

  42. True, pot is not addicting. No worse than alcohol.

  43. S: She makes a very good point. It’s not dangerous because it’s dangerous. it’s dangerous because it is illegal.


  45. Can you catch a buzz from smoking hemp?

  46. Legalize industrial hemp now!
    Yeah, why is hemp illegal? When was the last time you smoked a rope?

  47. I like this debate more than the other ones but I think we’re spending too much time on drugs

  48. Well, meth is bad for you, gary. Cocaine is bad too.

  49. G: No fun at a party

  50. Virgil Goode is my name and I road on the Danville Train…

  51. G: I want to balance the budget. But we shouldn’t be policemen of the world

  52. J: Bankrupt blah blah blah, deficit reduction blah blah blah, budget balancing blah blah blah. But unlike the Republicans, and I am not a Republican, I want to cut back on the military. And you know libertarians don’t want to spend money on other people.
    Even soldiers.

  53. S: Virgil is fucking nuts.
    Ooo, foresight on the drone issue.
    YES! A Moratorium on Drones!

  54. Damn, if only she weren’t an untested politician running as a Green.

  55. I think Stein and Anderson should run on the same ticket.

  56. A: I think he’s having a good night. He’s got a comprehensive worldview. The problem is a military industrial complex that is corrupt.

  57. It’s pretty clear that voting for Johnson would be an even bigger mistake than voting for Romney.

  58. A: We’re acting like war criminals. What’s up with that??

  59. G: Again, this is very specific and piecemeal.

  60. J: I was opposed to going into Iraq.
    And so was I.
    Ok, so far, Gary and I see eye to eye on Iraq and Afghanistan

  61. Gary, those Iranian protestors didn’t show up in support of the US. They were protesting their rigged election.

  62. Brooke better not still be in college in 2030 unless she’s a tenured professor.

  63. G: Um, that’s a BAD strategy. It only means that the rich will go to college. That’s how it was in the 50’s and why my parents didn’t got to college.

  64. S: Well, I don’t know about FREE college but affordable would be nice.

  65. What does the government guarantee with the student loans? That they won’t let those loans be included in bankruptcies?

  66. In France, tuition is about the same as the student activities fee here.

  67. I disagree that everyone should go to college. If everyone went to college, the curriculum would need to be diluted and we don’t want that
    We need plumbers and electricians and accountants and hairdressers

    • Maybe those schools could participate in the “free program” ? When I was going to the beauty school for my hair they said the schools cost 8-15 thousand dollars!!!

  68. A: Technical education! Yes, totally agree. Good auto mechanics are worth their weight in gold

  69. Student debt is non-dischargeable. Unreal! It could be lifetime indentured service to the lenders.

  70. G: We’re not going to like Virgil.
    I went to school courtesy of Pell Grants and loans. And I’ve paid every cent of that back plus was able to pay my taxes.

  71. J: Yes, let’s just ignore the next cancer researcher because he/she can’t afford to go to school
    YOU and ME

  72. A: We can’t not afford not to educate.
    Massive spending cuts not good during a little depression.

  73. S: I agree with Rocky. I am totally asking him out later.

  74. S: Makes good point about indentured servitude.

  75. OMG! This is the debate everyone should be watching!

  76. S: NDAA 1021 is an outrage. It’s a betrayal of our civil liberties.

  77. Why is this not a major debate??

  78. S: End the assassinations. End the abuse of FISA.
    Repeal the patriot act.
    But you need to say why, Jill.

  79. S: Good Ben Franklin quote

  80. A: The system of justice can provide for everyone. It wasn’t broken before we broke it.
    Obama asked for indefinite detention. Habeas corpus.
    Jeez, it’s true. It’s a very bad situation but people are not being told how bad it is.
    Think about what happened to OWS

  81. Yes, Obama screwed us after he got the nomination.
    (is he going to take Jill up on the coffee and dessert?)

  82. J: He would veto NDAA. But otherwise acts like a wild and crazy guy who is so Hot!

  83. NASCAR jackets and Liberty Torches!

  84. Oh, I see. Gary Johnson is the Ron Paul candidate

  85. There’s not enough on the economy

  86. Is this a mensa question?

  87. YES!!! New Equal Rights Amendment!
    This is the correct answer

  88. Why isn’t Anderson the mainstream candidate? Why isn’t Obama talking like Anderson??
    And Stein?

  89. G: Term limits is more important than equality. Naturally.

  90. J: Term limits. ???
    Where is this term limit thing coming from?
    And yeah! I got re-elected! So, cool for everyone else to be term limited but not for me

  91. S: Money is not speech and corporations are not people. Also a pretty good answer but I like the ERA answer a little bit better.

  92. If I was messing with elections, I would abolish the electoral college & establish a national primary (not just Dems & Reps but every possible party — all on one day) . Something like that. I don’t give a s**t about term limits.

    • I do. Unlimited incumbency is like income inequality: the longer you’re in office, the more you can tilt the advantage to yourself.

      • I know, but if we tried other electoral reforms the term limits might not be necessary. I don’t really like lame duck terms…..

        • Lame duck terms can produce startlingly good results: Ted Kaufman and Roland Burris, who voted as they thought right. There’s a lot of freedom in not caring about campaign war chests.

  93. S: Ok, she’s making a pretty good case about the Citizens United case. How can we merge that with Rocky’s new ERA?

  94. G: Closing statement.
    Even Goode has a right to be heard even if he makes no damn sense.

  95. It’s so interesting here people do a debate that isn’t weirdly planned.

  96. Except for the abuse of the H1B visa system. But that’s only part of the problem

  97. G: also good point on super pacs

  98. J: I’m really good. i have a CV. I’m an entrepreneur. I employed lots of people (but I probably didn’t pay bennies)
    I veto a lot! There are a lot of bills that I didn’t pass even though my state’s legislators kept sending them to me. I vetoed to set a record.
    No, actually, Gary, we want them to get green cards. We DON’T want to give more work visas. That will kill wages for sure.

  99. J: Good point about wasting your vote on someone you don’t believe in

  100. S: She relaxed throughout the debate but she’s still got to work on her delievery.
    Good point about voting vs not voting.
    She is making an appeal to her younger demographic.

  101. Again, I’d rather have affordable education, not free education. We need to regulate tuitions like the airlines.

  102. A: Makes a good point about plutocracy. The anti-plutocrat candidate wasn’t represented at the two party debates.

  103. I really like both Anderson and Stein. I guess I’ll have to write one in.

  104. A: makes good point about big money going into the pockets of the major party candidatate.
    I like his WPA program to put people back to work.
    Good ending.

  105. Larry King did a WONDERFUL job! Why were the other debates such a mess?

  106. Larry goes into interview mode with Christina.

  107. I like this Christina person.

  108. Actually, Larry was one of the best debate moderators we’ve had. He kept good control on time and was a good enforcer. Not bad for a guy who is prematurely decomposing before our very eyes.

  109. Hey, Katiebird, do you want to write a post debate summary?

  110. You know, I could see a second debate for third party candidates.
    Next Wednesday! Yeah!

  111. What website to we have to go to vote for two candidates for the next debate?

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