Gary Johnson: No To Carbon Taxes and Mandatory Vaccines, Yes To Black Lives Matter and Transformative Politics


From Nick Gillespie at Reason Magazine

Earlier today, I talked with Libertarian Party presidential candidate Gary Johnson for about half an hour. Here’s an edited version of my conversation with the former two-term Republican governor of New Mexico. The topics we covered include whether he supports carbon taxes and mandatory vaccines (no to both), agrees with Hillary Clinton’s characterization of Donald Trump as racist (yes), and if he thinks there is any chance he will crack 15 percent in the national polls that will earn him a ticket to the presidential debates (“We’re very optimistic”).

Johnson, who ran for president on the LP ticket in 2012 and pulled more than 1 million votes, says that the response his campaign is getting this time around is a “transformation.” He attributes this to an “appetite” voters have for a different approach to politics, one that combines liberal social views and conservative fiscal views. He is certainly the only presidential candidate who believes “taxes to me are like a death plague,” blacks are systematically denied equal opportunities in America, minimum-wage laws punish low-skilled workers, and marijuana should be legalized.

“We are two former Republican governors who served in heavily Democratic states,” Johnson told me while discussing the reaction to the way he and his running mate, former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld, mash-up positions normally associated with either the right or the left. “What that meant is that we pissed everybody off, and because we pissed everybody off, we both got re-elected by bigger margins. We pissed off the left, we pissed off the right, but really where we came down was right in the middle. Where we came down on was right where everybody is, right where the majority of people are at.”—Nick Gillespie

Read here for the full interview.