Tag Archive for: BlakeMasters

The Promise of Libertarianism

Estimated Reading Time: 5 minutes

We have been hard on our libertarian friends this election cycle. We have made our case that we cannot blow the chance to change the balance of power in the Senate for the satisfaction of a protest vote.

The Prickly Pear is not alone in this. That is likely why Senator Rand Paul, about as close to a libertarian to ever serve in the Senate, has endorsed Blake Masters.

We feel that libertarians should support Blake Masters. Whether libertarians help or hinder, remains to be seen. They have it in their power to be spoilers or to advance the cause of liberty by stopping a truly radical administration. And of course, they are not the only variable that might determine the outcome. There is of course the strength or weakness of Blake Masters himself, his platform, and that of his Democrat opponent.

No doubt money also plays a big factor, with Democrat Kelly having a huge advantage. In a close race, it will be hard to sort all of that out. We just hope our libertarian friends will help Republicans as they remain the best political machine, perhaps the only political machine, that can stop the Democrats. Therefore, we would like to draw the distinction between libertarianism and the Libertarian Party.

We think a great deal of the former, and not so much of the latter.

Speaking of the former, libertarians have contributed considerably over the years in the realm of ideas.

Many of their conceptions have come to pass.

Perhaps the most important is School Choice. 

It was not that long ago that the idea of schooling was simply to go to the school you were assigned because of geography. Even going out of district was made difficult, if not impossible. If parents did not like the school for their child, they had options only if they were quite wealthy.

The idea was primarily put forth by the libertarian economist Milton Friedman. It was part of his general philosophy expressed so well in his hit TV series. People should be “free to choose”.

Besides Friedman’s world-class academic clout (Nobel Prize in Economics) and his outsized influence at the University of Chicago, he worked with many Republicans on ideas. He was an early advisor to Barry Goldwater.

Arizona has been a leader in the school choice movement largely due to two wonderful libertarian-oriented expatriates from New Jersey, Jack and Isabelle McVaugh. They started the ball rolling with the founding of the Arizona School Choice Trust. As a disclaimer, I have served on its board for 20 years.

Once the idea was accepted that poor parents wanted and needed a choice, the idea expanded to the idea that all people should have that choice and now Arizona is the leader in the nation in school choice. That is in no small part thanks to a Republican legislature and Governor.

The same can be said for Florida.

This story is worth telling because it was libertarian lawyers, jurists, economists, and thinkers that nurtured the ideas. However, it was Republican legislators who implemented the ideas and defended them against the attacks of the teacher unions and the educational/administrative monopoly.

Libertarians are also largely credited with breaking down state-mandated credentials, which usually do nothing more than generate fees and restrict access to certain trades and professions.Again though, the ideas were implemented by Republican legislators.

The legalization of marijuana and its decriminalization was in large part a libertarian enterprise.

The concept of Health Savings Accounts is largely credited to libertarian thinker John Goodman, while its stanchest supporter was perhaps conservative Senator Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania.

What can be called the “Hard Money Movement”, was largely the creation of libertarian writers and economists. Perhaps the most prominent was Harry Browne, who wrote “You Can Profit From the Coming Devaluation”, back in 1968. He foresaw the collapse of the Bretton Woods post-war arrangements (1971) and the great inflation of the 1970s.

The first gold brokerage in Arizona was founded in the early 1970s by two libertarians, and many of the larger Arizona firms today trace their origin to that initial company.

However, it was Republicans working with libertarians that got legislation passed legalizing gold possession in the US (1974), and later on, Republican Ron Paul sponsored the Gold Commission (1980) which authorized the minting of US gold coins.  That beautiful American Eagle, was a libertarian idea, implemented by Republicans.

Libertarians and their associated think tanks have largely been responsible for spreading ideas of both the Austrian School of Economics and the aforementioned Chicago School.  Where would we be without Ludwig von Mises, F.A. Hayek, Murray Rothbard, Milton Friedman, Richard Epstein, and Arizona’s own Clint Bolick?  We might be in the world of Denny Hastert and John Boehner again, two unprincipled political hacks that just happened to oppose Democrats on occasion.

In all the cases cited, you might discern a theme unfolding: the libertarian idea of people being free to choose. Free to choose their profession without undue restriction, free to choose their schooling, and even free to choose what investments they might make. And yes, even free to smoke a joint and not go to prison.

But also present in that theme is this: it was accomplished by legislation backed by sympathetic Republicans. The ideas were largely libertarian, the implementation was by Republicans.

Now we acknowledge this does not apply in all cases. For example, libertarians warned us about the Patriot Act and other national security measures taken after 9/11. They said this apparatus could be turned against American citizens. They were correct about this but Republicans were not listening. We think they are listening now, however.

Republicans need libertarians for fresh ideas and they are needed to keep Republicans thinking about liberty.  Like most politicians, they often lose sight of what just governments were founded to do, protect the liberty of the people.  Sometimes Republicans can think of just getting elected.  Elected to do what?  That is why they need libertarians nipping at their heels to keep the herd in line.

But libertarians need Republicans because libertarians have a tendency to stray into the mists of abstract theory and get lost, without hope of implementation. Their response to their own weaknesses is to get angry and frustrated that Republicans are often not rigorously principled enough and begin to think they then must do it all on their own. They often need Republicans to pull them out of the theoretical clouds and think about how you actually pass laws and govern a great nation.

History shows the real way the libertarian enterprise has achieved success. Their greatest victories came when they worked with Republicans to get actual laws passed and to get actual justices confirmed. They have not achieved success because the Libertarian Party has been successful at the polls.

The most enduring changes they have achieved is when they helped elect conservative Republicans and then kept them oriented toward liberty.

So, as we move to the final stretch of this long campaign, we ask libertarians to reflect on the history and nature of their successes, their great contributions, and the conservative Republicans that made it possible.

The control of the US Senate could well be decided in Arizona. For libertarians, we ask you to reflect on your own history of success that we have outlined. Who will be more sympathetic to your ideas: Blake Masters or Mark Kelly? Who would be more likely to advance your ideas? Who has the best chance of winning the race and actually serving in the Senate, your guy or the Republican?

Who is the perfect candidate?  There is none.

How Republicans Can Stop Letting Libertarians Spoil their Victories

Estimated Reading Time: 4 minutes

Editors Note: Most conservatives would share almost all these sentiments. We may differ on cultural matters on occasion,  but even that can be handled by simply letting people be free and letting competition shake out the bad ideas from the good. However, the central point he makes is valid. The best protection Republicans can have from libertarians spoiling the election, is for Republicans to be more reliable when it comes to protecting freedom through limited government. We have too many in the party that cave to the Chamber of Commerce from time to time, cave to the “international community” like the UN and its agencies, cave to the mainstream press, and cave to the Department of Defense. However, to libertarians, we ask that they recognize we are in a struggle with a party that really knows how to use political power, and that political power will have to be used to claw back our freedoms. Don’t vote for a candidate who can’t win. Vote for the one that most closely matches your own concept of liberty. In this case, conservatives and libertarians can agree, a vote for Blake Masters is key to taking the Senate and stopping the socialist juggernaut. 

If Republicans want control of the U.S. Senate they need the four swing states (AZ, GA, PA, and NV) to go Republican. In Arizona, (R) Blake Masters is behind (D) Mark Kelly by 4.5 points, while (L) Marc Victor is covering the spread.

As a personal friend of Marc Victor’s and a Libertarian, I want Blake Masters to win by being such a good freedom advocate that he renders the Libertarian candidate irrelevant. 

Here is how I believe he can do so without losing his base.

After a 20-year war in Afghanistan with thousands of deaths leading to the Taliban taking over in 11 days, it’s clear that Republicans need to embrace their antiwar roots. I’d love Masters to say this:

Thou Shalt Not Murder.

Not provoking a nuclear war with Russia or China needs to be our number one priority. Wars result in mass death, missing limbs, lost loved ones, and post-traumatic stress disorder for the common man while providing prestige for politicians, never knowing if the end result will be worth the monumental cost. Dwight D. Eisenhower knew this in 1956 when he refused to respond militarily to Soviet atrocities in Hungary, Ronald Regan understood this in 1983 when the Soviets shot down an American aircraft (KAL007) which killed an American Congressman. War eventually brought down the Soviet Empire, Japanese, German, French, British, Austro-Hungarian, Romanov, and Ottoman Empires. War – indiscriminate theft and mass murder – is immoral AND we cannot afford it.

The Economy:

Thou Shalt Not Steal. 

As those bearing the torch of the Declaration of Independence, we advocate the separation of economy and state and work towards the decriminalization of all economic activity between consenting adults. Abolish the Federal Reserve’s legal monopoly on currency and recognize that increasing the money supply (inflation) creates more dollars chasing the same amount of goods resulting in higher prices. South Korea is wealthier than North Korea not because of welfare and money printing, nor did the world grow rich from such parasitism. When people are free, they have more options on how to cooperate with one another, leading to more mutually beneficial transactions. As far as housing, universities, and health care go: It’s no coincidence that the most expensive industries are the most regulated and subsidized. He who pays the piper calls the tune, either producers try to please customers or politicians.

Schooling:

Just as we would oppose the Catholic Church forcing people to fund their schools, governments need to allow citizens to opt-out of funding schools they don’t feel are a net benefit to society. The population by every metric is historically, logically, economically, and philosophically illiterate – teachers need to start doing a better job, and we must embrace competition.

Racism:

The Democratic party explicitly judges people by their race, we fully reject this racist psychopathy and treat people based on their actions not accidents of birth. After looking at the statistics regarding black-on-white violence, there is no evidence that whites are uniquely to blame for America’s problems. Just as Asians having much higher incomes than whites does not prove discrimination, no outcome disparity can automatically be attributed to racism or sexism. Masters is already great concerning Critical Race Theory.

January 6th:

For months in 2020 looters and rioters intimidated innocent people with no institutional power. On January 6th, for a couple of hours, the most sinister powerful people in the country finally faced a minor inconvenience. No need to clutch pearls for months after the event.

Big Tech:

Just as needing a license to vote can impose costs on the poor, needing a license to compete with big business hurts the poorest among us giving consumers fewer choices. Today people can use Odysee.com as an alternative to YouTube and Minds.com as an alternative to Twitter. Once big names are on these sites (social proof), the problem is solved. Just as MySpace, Sears, BlockBuster, A & P Grocers, Sam Goody, and Nokia, all lost market shares eventually, Big Tech must face the greatest check and balance a society can offer: The freedom to voluntarily disassociate from bad actors.

Police:

Abolish qualified immunity and victimless crimes. If we the citizens don’t have the right to do X, then logically we cannot delegate X to government officials.

Abortion:

Abortion involves initiating violence against a peaceful person and is immoral, Masters is good on this issue, just needs to allow rape victims to have abortion access for up to 8 weeks. Just as men need Jordan Peterson to tell them to seize responsibility, women need Kristan Hawkins to appreciate the importance of the concept that only you directly control your actions, others can only indirectly influence you.

Gun control:

Masters is great on this, we ask that he specify the problem is the government monopolizing weaponry.

American exceptionalism:

From elementary school to college I was told America invented slavery, colonialism, and child labor. This bigoted narrative needs to die.

Holding truths to be self-evident. Equality of unalienable rights to act peacefully. Freedom to speak unpopular truths. Opposing state monopoly of weaponry. Rewarding innovators who make life worth living: Vanderbilt, Carnegie, The Wright Brothers, Alexander Graham Bell, Nikola Tesla, Henry Ford, Charles Francis Jenkins, Norman Borlaug, Steve Jobs, Jeff Bezos, Sam Walton, Jimmy Wales, and countless others. Just as we hate to see Masters vilify hard-working, compassionate illegal immigrants, I hate to see my ancestors negatively generalized.

I hope we can keep America great by forming an alliance between conservatives and libertarians.

*****

Keith Knight is a writer and host of the Don’t Tread on Anyone Podcast.

Photo credit: Darron Birgenheier

Dem ‘Moderates’ In Name Only Are Running For Key Offices Across America

Estimated Reading Time: 3 minutes

Editors’ Note: Senator Mark Kelly is on a prominent but deceitful list of Democrat Senators calling themselves ‘moderate’ (see below) but voting almost always with the far-left, progressive and socialist agenda of the modern Democrat Party and the White House cabal directing Joe Biden. In addition, the junior Senator from Arizona considers himself a ‘maverick’ (as does our other U.S. Senator from Arizona, Kyrsten Sinema). There is nothing moderate about Senator Mark Kelly and he certainly does not represent the interests of Arizona citizens. It is time he exits the U.S. Senate and comes back to Arizona as a private citizen and resume his extensive business relationship with the huge Chinese media company known as TenCent, aligned with the CCP. Blake Masters is your choice for this election cycle. The choice is not hard – Blake Masters is a conservative Arizona native who will vote to stop the disaster of the open southern (and Arizona) border, a believer in the free enterprise system with equal opportunity for all Americans, a man devoted to the central and critical role of the family in American life, non-woke classical education for our children producing informed and competent citizens, and the rule of law for the safety and well-being of all Arizonans. Is there really a question about this choice?

 

It happens every time.

While most Republicans proudly run for office as conservatives and then govern that way, Democrats typically conceal their liberal beliefs and pose as “moderates” and “centrists.”

Once elected, they swing Left and startle voters who sign up for compassion and get stuck with socialism. (RELATED: SNEAD: The Left Is Pushing To Reshape Voting Systems Across America — Here’s How)

“Moderate Joe Biden” found himself in the White House. Surprise! He reigns miles to the Left of presidents Lyndon Johnson, Bill Clinton, and even Obama.

Americans are paying dearly for Biden’s bamboozling them in 2020. Inflation, violent crime, illegal aliens, transgenderism and neo-authoritarianism run rampant, from sea to shining sea.

Democrats are at it again: U.S. Senate incumbents running for re-election masquerade as moderates, often with the regime media trumpeting their “centrism.” If elected, they will abandon the “middle of the road” and ride the left shoulder on the Highway to Hell.

The American Conservative Union offers a quick and reliable test for alleged centrism. ACU rates lawmakers’ key votes. Zero is most liberal; 100 is most conservative. Scores between 33 and 66 occupy the middle of the ideological spectrum.

Also, FiveThirtyEight.com tracks how frequently legislators support Biden’s agenda — from 0% to 100%. The more they vote with the Left-wing Biden, the further Left they reveal themselves to be.

These metrics confirm that Democrat Senate incumbents facing re-election on November 8 are MINOs: Moderates in Name Only.

  • Michael Bennet of Colorado: Politico describes Bennet as “a quiet moderate.” Slate calls him “a relative centrist.” Nevertheless, Bennet’s ACU rating is a paltry 5.7, and he votes with Biden 98.1% of the time.
  • Catherine Cortez Masto of Nevada: The Las Vegas Sun-Sentinel paints her as “reasonable, moderate and eminently capable.” (ACU: 5.6/Biden: 92.7%)
  • Maggie Hassan of New Hampshire, per the so-called “Paper of Record,” “is working to burnish her centrist image without making political waves.” (6.7/96.4%).
  • Mark Kelly of Arizona is “touting centrist policies and his efforts to reach across the aisle,” National Public Radio reports. (12.8/94.4%).
  • Raphael Warnock of Georgia “has positioned himself as a traditional, center-left, Bidenish Democrat,” the Washington Post observes. (7.7/96.4%)

These senators seem inoffensive. They do not resemble far-Left extremists such as Bill Ayers, Angela Davis, or the Rev. Jeremiah Wright. Unfortunately, their vote records expose them as the Not Ready for the Rotary Club Players.

“Moderate” senators Bennet and Cortez Masto are Left of Senator Bernie Sanders (Socialist – Vermont), who enjoys a higher ACU rating and lower Biden-vote record (6.2/92.6%).

These five MINOs voted in lockstep for these radical measures:

As Sen. Ted Cruz (R – Texas) told me, these five Democrats joined every other Democrat to confirm outspoken police-defunding advocates Kristen Clarke and Vanita Gupta to top Justice Department positions.

Voters should distrust and verify Democrat claims of “moderation.” Unlike stock prices, congressional vote records are an excellent predictor of future performance.

Genuinely moderate Democrats are nearly extinct. Formers senators such as Oklahoma’s David Boren, Louisiana’s John Breaux, and Georgia’s Sam Nunn might as well be on display at the Smithsonian’s Museum of Natural History, between the mastodon and the stegosaurus.

Any voter who discovers an actual centrist Democrat on the ballot should contact the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. It will dispatch an endangered species protection team at once.

*****

This article was published by The Daily Caller News Foundation and is reproduced with permission.

Blake Masters is Spot On — Mark Kelly Is No Arizona Maverick

Estimated Reading Time: 2 minutes

Democratic Arizona Sen. Mark Kelly tries to make noise that he’s a reasonable, moderate and independent thinker, but the facts about his policy votes and economic views tell a different story. As Kelly’s rival Blake Masters points out, Kelly is no Kyrsten Sinema – an actual maverick not afraid to occasionally buck the Democratic Party.

Kelly supported the falsely-named “Inflation Reduction Act,” which has done nothing to stop painful inflation walloping American families. Kelly supported the CHIPS Act (H.R. 4346), a flawed, $250 billion spending spree combining corporate welfare and industrial policy. Kelly voted for the inflationary, 2,741 page, $1.5 trillion omnibus spending package that expanded the Green New Deal nonsense.

Kelly has a 0% lifetime rating from the Heritage Action For America scorecard, which means that he’s literally never deviated from the progressive position on anything during his Senate career.

Unlike Sinema, Kelly voted to blow up the filibuster, a move that Democrats are pushing for to ram through a federal takeover of elections and pack the U.S. Supreme Court.

Masters said it well on a recent debate stage against Kelly: “Joe Biden is spending like a drunken sailor and at every single opportunity Mark Kelly just says yes. He can’t say no to Chuck Schumer. He can’t say no to Joe Biden – at least Sen. Sinema stopped Build Back Better.”

Sinema has received an outsized amount of bullying and harassment from the far left for voting only 10% in alignment with conservatives at Heritage over the course of her Senate career.

“I know Sen. Sinema caved on the Inflation Reduction Act, and I’m mad at her for that,” Masters continued. “But hey, isn’t it interesting that you have to wonder which way she was gonna vote? You never have to wonder which way Sen. Kelly is gonna vote. Because any spending bill that Biden puts in front of him, he will sign.”

Indeed, as Masters noted, Kelly was the deciding vote on the flawed $750 billion Inflation Reduction Act, which passed solely along party lines.

As women and children suffer from rapes and human trafficking along Arizona’s porous border, Kelly said “no” to 18,000 more Border Patrol agents, but “yes” to 87,000 new IRS agents through funding in the Inflation Reduction Act. Though Kelly and his fellow Democrats try to sell it otherwise, those 87,000 IRS agents won’t just go after billionaires. They’re not just going after big business. They’re going to be auditing average Americans – they’re going to be auditing small businesses and adding headaches and paperwork sure to put some businesses under and at the least cause stalling and stagnation.

As Masters noted, Kelly also voted to send stimulus checks to illegal aliens and violent felons sitting in jail. Is that a good use of taxpayer money? No.

“Think about that the next time you go to the grocery store and you can’t afford to buy steak or eggs,” Masters said.

*****

This article was published by the Daily Caller News Foundation and is reproduced with permission.

WATCH LIVE: 2022 Arizona Senate Debate featuring Mark Kelly, Blake Masters and Marc Victor

Estimated Reading Time: < 1 minute

The 2022 election for U.S. Senator from Arizona may well determine the balance of power in the upper chamber of Congress. The debate between Blake Masters and Mark Kelly (and libertarian candidate Mark Victor) for this critical seat is presented below in its entirety.

As the readers of The Prickly Pear know, we strongly endorse Blake Masters in this race. We believe our nation is in serious jeopardy with the current White House and Congress imposing a radical leftist agenda on all Americans, their families, and our liberty. We urge all readers to watch this debate closely and decide which candidate most closely reflects Arizonans’ concerns and needs at this difficult time and in the years ahead.

Please be aware that in close races, the libertarian candidate draws votes predominantly away from the conservative candidate. Despite the  small, single digit percentage of votes libertarian candidates typically achieve, it is sometimes enough to secure the election for the other major candidate.

We have seen multiple close and key races over the years determined by this phenomenon. The United States Senate should not stay in Democrat hands given the terrible results and impact on all Americans over the past two years. Please factor in this important detail when you cast your vote for this critical office which may determine control of the U.S. Senate.

Remembering 2012 in Arizona When Libertarians Elected Kyrsten Sinema

Estimated Reading Time: 2 minutes

We have received some friendly pushback from some of our libertarian friends because of our contention that more often than not, the Libertarian Party rarely elects anyone but Democrats.

Now frankly we have not examined every race that has been conducted over the past 40 years so we could be wrong. However, we have a more recent and relevant case to be examined.

In 2010, the new census data lead to the creation in Arizona of the 9th Congressional district, which included areas of  Mesa and Tempe and parts of Phoenix. As such, it is a pretty good blend of conservative Mormon Mesa and the more liberal areas around ASU. It looks a lot like suburban Arizona and hence is instructive.

Featured in the race was the first openly bisexual running for Congress, former State Representative, and State Senator Krysten Sinema versus a Tea Party Black conservative, Vernon Parker.

The race was so close, it could not be called on election night but was delayed until November 12th. According to Wikipedia, here are the following results:

Democrat Kyrsten Sinema  121,881 or 48.66%

Republican Vernon Parker  111,630 or 44.46%

Libertarian Powell Gammill  16,620 or 6.63%

The remaining tiny fraction of .14% was write-ins.

Now, you can see that what divided the Democrats from the Republicans was only about 4% while the Libertarians took over 6 1/2% of the vote.  So, if roughly two-thirds (a reasonable assumption) of the Libertarians had voted for the Republican Black conservative Vernon Parker, he would have been elected.  History would have been different.

Sinema went on to win again, and you might remember a few weeks ago, was the key vote in the Senate putting Biden’s wild spending agenda across the line.

Elections have consequences and close elections make no difference. We doubt she has voted any differently than if she has won by a wider margin.

So, it is not silly to say Libertarians often elect socialist-oriented candidates, people opposed in almost every way to the principles of limited government and personal liberty.

Here is a real-life, current example of what we are talking about. This is not theory, but an actual consequential example to drive home our point.

As for the educational importance of the campaign, does anyone remember Powell Gammill? Do you remember what he said? Did his presence in the race make Vernon Parker any more dedicated to his principles? I am sure he was a decent fellow, but really, Gammill’s lasting legacy insofar as politics is Krysten Sinema, not his ideas and principles.

The race between Mark Kelly and Blake Masters is a close one. While there are reasons to suspect the recent poll that gave 15% to the libertarian Marc Victor, other polls show it in the 3% range, within the margin of error. Whatever it really is, it likely is quite close.

To our libertarian friends we say, your vote has consequences in close elections. Don’t let your egos get in the way of the cause of liberty. We all have suffered because of your errors in 2012. Please, do not do it again in this critical election cycle giving the victory to Democrat Mark Kelly for the Arizona U.S. Senate seat.

 

Arizona GOP Senate Nominee Masters Now Deadlocked with Democrat Incumbent Kelly: Poll

Estimated Reading Time: 2 minutes

Editors’ Note: It is likely that as the race for US Senate between incumbent Kelly and Republican challenger Masters tightens, what libertarians decide to do will prove decisive. The polling evidence confirms this is happening. We have provided two articles on this subject which we urge our libertarian readers to consider. We don’t hold out much hope that libertarian leaders can be convinced but we hope libertarian voters are more practical. As we examined in one article, the classic arguments that libertarian campaigns educate the public and hold Republicans firmer to their small government standards,  just don’t apply in the real world. We don’t know of any libertarian political campaign which has stopped RINOs from taking power. Only conservative Republicans can keep RINOs from taking power because they work within the party. More often, the outcome is perverse from the standpoint of liberty. In close elections, libertarians wind up electing socialists. As another article argued, with the political parties now so polarized, it really boils down pretty much to a choice between the socialist party and the Republican Party. When you split the anti-socialist vote, it results  in electing Democrats. We think libertarians contribute a lot to the discussion in this country. However, the Libertarian Party has not been successful at electing libertarians but has been successful at electing socialists. To be sure, Republicans have disappointed more than any of us would like. But you don’t solve that problem by electing Democrats, which are now operationally and philosophically a socialist party. We urge libertarians to put their egos aside and not betray their principles by electing Democrats. You may disagree with some Republicans on free trade and drug legalization, but the socialist orientation of the modern Democrat Party is a much greater threat to our liberty. Libertarians disagree with socialists on a much broader range of topics. Pick the candidate which more closely reflects your view overall and one who has a chance to be elected. For the Senate, that clearly is Black Masters.

 

Blake Masters, Arizona’s Republican nominee for Senate, is 3 points behind Democratic Sen. Mark Kelly, placing him within the margin of error, according to a poll.

Masters, who was endorsed by former President Donald Trump, comes in at 48% with Kelly at 51%, a CBS News/YouGov Battleground Tracker survey from last week shows.

The poll was conducted with 1,164 registered Arizona voters from Sept. 30-Oct. 4, and the margin of error is 3.8 points, meaning that Masters may have an edge over Kelly one month before the midterm election…..

*****

Continue reading this article at Just the News.

SPOILER ALERT! Marc Victor, Libertarian Spoiler for the 2022 Arizona U.S. Senate Race

Estimated Reading Time: 5 minutes

The first thing we would like to make clear is we have great sympathy, even affection, for many libertarian ideas. That is more than just a gratuitous statement. Readers know that over the past few years we have published many articles from libertarian-oriented think tanks and publications.

Theoretical ideas and the governing mechanics of politics, are often two different things. We wish we all could live in a libertarian live and let-live world, but unfortunately, we face Progressive Democrats who would not allow such a thing.

They want your income, your schools, and even your pronouns. They want to censure you, restrict the free flow of ideas, and they want to ban you from civilized society if you disagree with their unrealistic and often dystopic views. These tendencies are already morphing into the use of force, such as the abuse of the legal system and the perversion of justice. Have you been following the goings on in the Department of Justice lately or the FBI lately?

Progressives must be opposed and beaten in this election cycle. To do so peacefully, we need to work through the political process as it really exists, and in the history of the United States, that means the two-party system.

Ron Paul is a good example of a realistic libertarian.  He ran as a Republican and served honorably for many years as a Republican in Texas.  Much can be said for his son Rand Paul, who as a politician, has even been more effective than his father.

To continue to substitute a wish for reality should be classified as a sin. The reason is it leads to outcomes exactly opposite of those intended while pretending that it does not. To think the two-party system is not operable and dominant is wishful and foolish thinking.

While we support many libertarian ideas and ideals, we don’t think it is a good idea to ever vote for a libertarian.

In reality, when an isolated libertarian has been elected, they generally are not very effective.  One can think of Justin Amash of Michigan or even the strange one-time governor of Minnesota, Jesse Ventura.

When a person loses political power, such as a second-term President, they are referred to as a lame duck. Libertarians are duck eggs. They are not even developed enough to limp. They have nothing to trade politically speaking because they have so few officeholders, little if any party infrastructure, and hence can’t form coalitions with other politicians.  To form coalitions, you often need something to trade or bargain with, and libertarians rarely hold power, which is the currency of politics.

You don’t have to be a libertarian to be a spoiler of course. Teddy Roosevelt helped elect the tyrannical Woodrow Wilson. Would Taft have been better on civil liberties and kept us out of war? We would say for certain on the first but wonder about the second. Perverse outcomes.

Ross Perot was not a libertarian. But he was a fiscal conservative, about the last of his breed. He made a tremendous effort and elected Bill Clinton. Another perverse outcome.

The arguments for running as a libertarian are pretty weak since they have little chance of being elected. One argument is that the campaign itself is educational and beneficial to the public. Is that so? If it was memorable, name the last libertarian who ran for President and for the Senate in Arizona. No, don’t look it up. If it made such an “educational impression”, you would remember.

Another common argument is that running as a libertarian keeps the Republican Party from drifting to the left. Lose a couple of close elections and that will teach those rascally RINOs from straying from the teachings of Ayn Rand!

We find no evidence that this idea actually works in the real world. We can’t recall any Republican changing a major position because of a libertarian challenge. However, we can remember candidates changing positions due to primary challenges within their own party.

We are not suggesting the Republicans don’t deserve competition or condemnation for losing their principles. Remember it was Richard Nixon who gave us the EPA, took us off the gold standard, negotiated an “honorable peace” in Viet Nam, and gave us Affirmative Action.

Republicans have often betrayed the cause of liberty, but we can’t find much evidence that libertarian party antics have slowed that process. If anything, it is the MAGA populist-oriented Republicans who are not only shaking up the Republican establishment but the Democrats as well.

A recent article in Newsweek suggests that the libertarian challenger to Blake Masters has risen after the debate to 15% in recent polling.  However, the difference between Masters and Kelly has been narrowing to the polling “margin of error”. If the 15% is true, libertarian Marc Victor could well destroy the chances to unseat Mark Kelly. How does electing a man who votes 94% of the time with Biden, and has close ties to Red China, advance the cause of liberty?

The threat is not theoretical. Again, following the past Presidential cycle, Newsweek pointed out that the libertarian candidate Jo Jorgensen could have made a difference in several battleground states:

“Former Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker pointed to his state specifically as a place where Jorgensen’s vote tallies exceeded the margin between Biden and Trump. “If it holds, @LPNational candidate got 38,000 votes in Wisconsin and margin between @JoeBiden and @realDonaldTrump is less than 21,000 votes,” Walker tweeted. The Associated Press called the state for Biden on Wednesday, with a difference of less than 21,000 votes remaining between Biden and Trump by Friday evening. Meanwhile, more than 38,000 voters cast their ballots for Jorgensen, according to the AP’s election results.”

“Votes cast for Jorgensen in Georgia and Pennsylvania also exceeded the margins between Biden and Trump on Friday night, and her vote tally in Arizona was also within striking distance.”

Well, that turned out well didn’t it?  Remember though, vote libertarian because it is educational and keeps the Republicans on the straight and narrow. As mentioned before, there is scant evidence either of these assumptions is true.  The real result was a senile President elected who rides roughshod over the Constitution.

The other more plausible reason Marc Victor is running is not that he can win, but rather he is so full of himself, he simply wants to make a lot of noise for his own purposes.  His view is that both parties are corrupt, so why not make a royal mess of things and feel superior to everyone else?

We have sympathy for that view on corruption. But how does electing Democrats solve the corruption problems in both parties?

And, if you will excuse us, how does satisfying Marc Victor’s ego advance the cause of liberty?

There is one other possible angle. Marc Victor could negotiate with Blake Masters. By swinging his support to Masters, he might be able to get Masters to push something dear to Marc Victor. But this presupposes there is something dearer to Marc Victor than Marc Victor. We hope that is the way it goes but don’t hold your breath.

Insofar as the candidates themselves, Blake Masters is taking quite a bit of heat from Democrats precisely because of his libertarian-oriented positions on things like Social Security. He had the temerity to suggest this grand unfunded Ponzi scheme may best be allowed to operate in the private sector, much like the very successful systems in some other countries.

The following video was produced by libertarian Keith Knight and the questions we think were both intelligent and substantive. We think Masters did quite well in this interview. In short, the only electable candidate with libertarian leanings is not Marc Victor but Blake Masters. If you are a libertarian, remember that.

In the real world, there are no perfect choices but only tradeoffs, as the great Thomas Sowell has often opined. In terms of The Prickly Pear, we favor the candidate with the best chance of advancing a liberty-oriented agenda, with the best chance of winning.

Marc Victor, as earnest as he may be, will never be elected. But, he could well elect Mark Kelly. What a perverse outcome for someone who supports the ideals of freedom and limited government.

Our view is simple and the ‘most’ perfect choice for liberty – vote for Blake Masters and don’t let friends vote libertarian.

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Photo credit: Gage Skidmore

 

Mark Kelly Can’t Hide From His Embrace Of Joe Biden

Estimated Reading Time: 3 minutes

Mark Kelly is in lockstep with flailing President Joe Biden, and there’s no denying it.

There’s one statistic Sen. Mark Kelly can’t run from: The Arizona Democrat has voted with President Joe Biden’s radical agenda more than 94 percent of the time. With a White House approval rating below 43 percent, that’s not a number to run on during an election cycle historically hostile to the president’s party in power.

On the Arizona debate stage Thursday night, Republican Senate nominee Blake Masters made it a point right out of the gate to highlight the incumbent Democrat’s record being in lockstep with the Biden administration.

“Sen. Mark Kelly has messed everything up. Our border is in chaos. We’ve got drugs and illegal aliens just pouring in. Crime is up. The cost of groceries, actually the cost of everything you need to live, keeps going up and up,” Masters said in his opening statement. “It wasn’t like this two years ago. What changed? Joe Biden took over, and in Washington, Mark Kelly backed Joe Biden every single time.”

Kelly turning the traditionally red seat into one of the most reliable votes for the White House agenda has already been the subject of numerous ads in the state, and for good reason. In 2020, Biden carried Arizona by fewer than 43,000 votes, an even narrower margin than Kelly, who was elected the same year by a margin of fewer than 80,000.

While Masters scored quick hits on crime and inflation in the debate’s first quarter, the knock-out blow came when Kelly couldn’t answer in the affirmative when presented with a critical question posed by the Republican challenger.

“I just want to ask one question,” Masters said, pivoting to face Kelly to his right. “Sir, have you done everything in your power to secure our southern border?”

Masters asked the question after the junior senator tried to distance himself from Biden, characterizing himself as an independent lawmaker who has “pushed back on this administration multiple times.”

When confronted on stage over his record on border security, Kelly began talking about various tours he took with law enforcement.

“That, my friend, is called evasion,” Masters interjected. “We have a wide-open southern border so if that’s the best you can do, I respectfully request you resign.”

On stage, Kelly tried to frame himself as a champion for border security, but the senator has voted to reject reinforcements for law enforcement and denied agents more equipment for drug detection. Kelly also voted to end the Trump administration’s “Remain in Mexico” policy, opening the migrant floodgates.

“Call me old fashioned, but I think the correct amount of illegal immigration is zero,” Masters said. Moments earlier, Masters pointed out Kelly’s vote for an army of 87,000 IRS agents in the dubiously-named Inflation Reduction Act while the Arizona lawmaker denied residents an army of agents to secure the southern border.

“Mark Kelly said no to 18,000 more border patrol agents but yes to 87,000 new IRS agents,” Masters said. “That shows you what his priorities are.”

Later in the match-up, Kelly sought to frame Masters as an extremist on abortion.

“He has supported state and national abortion bans that will deny the right for a woman to make this decision by themselves,” Kelly said.

But Masters didn’t shy away from his own platform, which is far more in line with public opinion and the rest of the developed world than the Democrat Party’s stance of taxpayer-funded, on-demand abortion for any reason at any time.

“I’m pro-life, and that means I believe in limits,” Masters said. “Now I support restrictions because I don’t believe in being extreme on this issue.”

The Republican venture capitalist branded Kelly as the “abortion radical” for sponsoring the Democrats’ legislation mandating that all 50 states legalize abortion for all nine months of pregnancy up until birth. In contrast, Masters reiterated his support for a state and federal ban on the procedure after 15 weeks, which is the policy in a bill Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., introduced in September.

When the Democrat senator was pressed on his support for late-term abortion, Kelly kept returning to his support for the now-extinct Supreme Court precedent in Roe v. Wade.

“Have you supported sixth-, seventh-, eighth-month [abortions]?,” the debate moderator asked, seeking to nail down whether the senator supported any hard limit.

“I have supported Roe v. Wade,” Kelly said in an effort to dodge his own record of voting for a law that was more extreme than the five-decade-old precedent.

Kelly tried to play down his abortion extremism by claiming that “late-term abortion only happens when there’s a serious problem.” But according to an analysis of the medical literature by the pro-life Charlotte Lozier Institute, the majority of late-term abortions are not performed for “maternal health complications or lethal fetal anomalies discovered late in pregnancy.”

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This article was published by The Federalist and is reproduced with permission.

Arizona Poll: Republican Blake Masters in Statistical Tie with Democrat Mark Kelly; Lake, Hobbs in Dead Heat

Estimated Reading Time: < 1 minute

Republicans Blake Masters and Kari Lake are both in statistical ties with their Democrat opponents in Arizona’s U.S. Senate and governor’s races, per a poll.

The CBS/YouGov poll released Wednesday shows that 48 percent of likely voters in Arizona are backing Masters, while 51 percent support Sen. Mark Kelly (D-AZ), who is running for reelection. Another one percent of voters are undecided. Masters is within the polling margin of error, making the race a statistical tie.

In the governor’s race, Lake is in a dead heat with Democrat Secretary of State Katie Hobbs, with each candidate drawing 49 percent of the likely voter response. Just one percent of polling participants remain undecided. The poll is consistent with the FiveThirtyEight polling average, which had both candidates at 47 percent as of Wednesday morning. Four of the six latest polls shared on the site showed Lake or Hobbs up just a single point, while the other two had Lake up four points.

This current poll also asked respondents to rate the top issues in the race. The issues that drew the highest amount of “Very important” responses from participants included the “Economy” (81 percent), “Inflation” (78 percent), “Immigration” (65 percent), and “Crime” (63 percent). “Abortion” received the seventh highest “Very important” response rate at 54 percent…..

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Continue reading this article at Breitbart.