Joe Miller earned the Libertarian Party (L.P.) its highest-ever vote percentage in a federal Senate race this week, with his 30 percent in Alaska.
Generally when an L.P. candidate gets into double digits it is because one of the major party’s isn’t contesting the race at all. But Miller impressively got this 30 percent L.P. total coming in second place against a Republican (winning incumbent Lisa Murkowski, 44 percent), with a Democrat (Ray Metcalfe, 11 percent), and an independent (Margaret Stock, 14 percent) far behind him. Miller beat the combined total of the Democrat and the 3rd place independent.
Miller pulled this off possibly despite the Libertarian label more than because of it; he was well-known to Alaskan voters, having been the official GOP Senate candidate in 2010.
In that race he famously was beaten by the incumbent Murkowski, who Miller exceeded in the primary by running a Tea-Party insurgent campaign. Yet in the general election she triumphed via write-in, a rare collision of dual near-impossibilities in modern politics: beating an incumbent and winning via write-in . . .
It’s an example of how “moving forward there’s a huge opportunity to enlarge our tent,” Watts says. “As much as we talk about open borders,” Watts says (Miller’s Tea-Partyish belief in border walls was a sticking point with many Libertarians), “we want folks to come in to our Party, to assimilate and actually become libertarians and understand the non-aggression principle and self-ownership and negative individual rights and the whole platform.” (Read more from “Historical First: Joe Miller Achieved Highest Vote for Libertarian in US Race Ever” HERE)