It is not the libertarians’ fault when a conservative candidate loses. As conservatives, we should avoid blaming others when we don’t succeed. That’s what liberals do. That, plus shred the Constitution and shovel our money to deadbeats.
Libertarians are not conservatives, and we don’t have a right to their votes. But sometimes we share the same goals, and some of them are gettable voters for conservative candidates. We just need to understand that there is no one kind of libertarian any more than there is one kind of Republican. In the GOP, you have social conservatives, the moderate/RINO wing, the national security hawks, and so forth. Despite the hand-wringing of the fainthearted pundits, it really is a big tent.
Libertarians, in contrast, are a big cluster flop.
It is not for us as conservatives to define who is and who is not a “libertarian.” Many different people call themselves “libertarians” – principled liberty advocates, committed Objectivists, people worried about CIA mind control lasers.
We usually think of a libertarian as a committed anti-statist who favors very limited government operating within strict parameters that maximize individual liberty. Some libertarians fit that mold. Others just want to take bong hits and pretend to be edgy by dissing conservatives.
The first kind are important allies of conservatives who should be welcomed and respected. The second kind ought to be slapped.
While what theoretically characterizes libertarians in general is anti-statism, what characterizes them in practice is that some really believe in anti-statism and others only believe in anti-statism as it applies to sex and pot.
When it comes to other kinds of statism, these sorta-anti-statists are too wrapped up in their inarticulate hatred of conservatives to care because they suspect conservatives live to spy on them in their bedrooms. This is ridiculous. Nothing ever goes on in these libertarians’ bedrooms.
The fact is that this kind of libertarian is quite open to statism in any form that doesn’t involve abortions or bongs. Look at Robert Sarvis in Virginia. The guy was practically a Democrat. He supported higher taxes, more regulation and all the other things Democrats love. He was even funded by a Democrat. But none of that mattered to these whiny, contrarian libertarians. Electing a crony capitalist so shameless he offered his corruption as reason to vote for him? No problem! Phew, that was close – now Virginia is safe from Cuccinelli’s proposed ban on kinky sex!