Libertarian vice-presidential candidate Bill Weld is in Anchorage this week, trying to shore up support for his running mate, Gary Johnson, and to increase the visibility of the Libertarian Party in Alaska.
“We have two objectives now,” Weld said. “Not having gotten into the debates, I think the chances of running the table because of the superiority of our ticket are hugely diminished. But, in addition to trying to pick up states, we also want to make sure that we get over 5 percent nationally, which would give the Libertarian Party a permanent seat at the table going forward, which I think would be good for Washington. It would enable us to have matching funds and not have to worry about ballot access.”
Weld said he is not an expert on many of the issues faced by Alaska Natives and people in the state’s rural areas, but he is familiar with resource development. He wants to open up more of Alaska to energy exploration and production.
Weld said the US is too Euro-centric in its trade policy and noted that Alaska is in a great place, geographically-speaking, to take advantage of the growth of the pan-Pacific region. Weld supports the Trans-Pacific Partnership — a trade agreement signed by President Obama that’s derided by conservatives for being too good a deal for Asian nations.
Weld says he believes the Libertarian Party platform is a good fit for Alaska but that the state’s Libertarian candidate for US Senate, Joe Miller, is not a good fit for the party.
“Mr. Miller doesn’t really represent either my point of view or the national Libertarian Party’s point of view. Fine guy, but not in tune with Gary Johnson’s and my thinking.”
Polls show the Johnson/Weld ticket has between 7 and 18 percent support in Alaska, more than double the national average.