A candidate attempting to talk about the issues. An interview with Libertarian Party Presidential candidate Gary Johnson.

Shakopee, Minnesota
October 27 2016

Marco Battaglia: What role do you think the constitution and the bill of rights should play in a modern Presidency?

Gary Johnson: I believe that the bill of rights and the constitution protect the minority against the will of the majority. I think that a politician should respect this dynamic in all that they do.

MB: How do you think that a President could best help the country work back to a sound currency?

GJ: I think that you start with a balanced budget. What we are currently doing is going to continue to lead to more and more inflation. The money we have in the bank is devalued significantly due to current practice of spending beyond revenue, due to current federal reserve policy, and due to a government that prevents backing currency or competing currency.

MB: Are we at the end of the two party system yet?

GJ: I think this election will be the unmasking. I think we have unmasked the Presidential debates commission and many polling flaws in this election cycle and I think that this will help any parties outside of the big two from this election forward.

MB: What do you think the fastest way to reign in the military industrial complex would be?

GJ: One way to help is to vote for myself and Weld. We are against the countries participation in regime change, the military should have no right to drone, or any type of strikes, without a Congressional declaration of war. The Pentagon itself says that it has 22 percent more base capacity than it needs.

MB: What message do you have for undecided voters?

GJ: I think that an undecided voter should look to our backgrounds to decide for themselves if we are qualified. I think we would serve a majority of citizens in terms of being fiscally conservative, socially inclusive, being skeptical of what our military is currently being used for, and supporting free markets. I believe that no matter what happens after election day that we will have an historic vote count.

MB: What are two ways that a Johnson presidency would improve American lives?

GJ: The Federal government will have a figurehead that does not want to spy on you without a warrant and that does not want to arrest you for choosing your own vices or medication.

MB: People like Congressman Thomas Massie to this day appear to have to talk in hushed tones about the Federal Reserve, this issue seems curiously absent from this election cycle, what do you see as the best way to take on the Fed going forward?

GJ: I think that the Federal Reserve should return to it’s original mandate immediately. I would support Fed Transparency, I think that transparency at the Fed may even be enough to end the fed, certainly as it currently operates.

MB: What do you think of the current movement to reinstate Glass-Steagall? Would you be positive towards the current legislation in congress if it got to your desk as President?

GJ: Certainly, I think that it is obvious that the repeal of Glass-Steagal contributed to the collapse. Financial institutions should fail if they do poor business. They should be punished the same way a small credit union or local bank would be punished for crimes and market rigging. When I say I want to end corporate welfare I am of course talking about bail outs too. The Fed Banks have a safety net and a way to make profit when making abysmal and unethical business decisions. In whose mind is this right? Financial institutions should pay the price for bad decisions and I think good legislation in this vein can actually help us work towards a much more free market for all citizens.

GJ: Another issue absent from the debate is the war on drugs. Drug policy needs to change certainly in terms of personal choice of medication and criminal justice reform, immediately. I am the only one on the ballot in every state that I feel understands this issue and that has a proposal to deal with it.

MB: The TPP is a hot button topic. Apparently Clinton and Trump both claim to be against it. Some are concerned that you have been on the fence about this issue, can you clarify your position?

GJ: Listen, when you have a President of a country that is traveling around the world, going behind closed doors, to be the PR person for a trade deal, something is wrong. I think trade deals should be negotiated openly in congress. I would certainly try to renegotiate anything not up to my standards in any trade deal. I have heard from people that I respect that it actually advances the ball in terms of free trade, so I would keep an open mind, but certainly many details in the agreement are troubling. So much of the legislation that we pass is not free market at all. In reality it ends up to be working against competition and working against free trade.

MB: What are the plans between now and election day?

GJ: We are going to do as many rallies as we can. Talk to as many voters as we can. I believe both parties are going to start to embrace a lot of what we are saying. My goal is to keep them talking about these issues to election day and beyond.

MB: You stated you are not running again, how do you plan to stay involved with the Libertarian Party?

GJ: I plan to keep fighting to get a representative debate system in place for our elections. I believe that this well help all future candidates and all citizens of this country. I think that everyone will be pleasantly surprised of all of the candidates that the Libertarian Party has debating eachother in the next cycles. I intend to support the party and our candidates as a member of the party.

Note from Marco Battaglia

I want to make it clear that Gary Johnson did not vet my questions, he did not know the questions beforehand. I asked for the interview and he accepted I would encourage anyone running for President to give answers related to these items that we touched on. I would gladly give equal time to anyone running.

You can read more about Gary Johnson at https://www.johnsonweld.com/ and you can interact with the campaign directly via that site or at https://www.facebook.com/govgaryjohnson/ or at

“Burke said that there were Three Estates in Parliament; but, in the Reporters’ Gallery yonder, there sat a Fourth Estate, more important far than they all.“ Thomas Carlyle

Marco Battaglia writes for the Iowa Free Press and is a proud member of The Fourth Estate

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