Robert Sarvis is the Libertarian Party nominee for governor of Virginia this year, running against Democrat Terry McAuliffe and Republican Ken Cuccinelli. As Sarvis has polled nine or 10 or more percent in some recent polls, he's getting more attention as a candidate. An examination of his positions on issues reveals he might not be really very libertarian at all, he might really come more from the far left on many issues.
His immigration views are somewhere to the left of those of California Governor Jerry Brown, who just recently declared his state a “sanctuary” state. Sarvis calls for complete open borders, basically no borders, and prefers that anyone be allowed to enter the United States who wants to. The problem with a policy like that is, if we erase national borders, we eliminate countries and become just a world of world citizens. This is the dream of the far left, they hate countries, especially the United States. On his web site, Sarvis writes, “As Governor of Virginia, I cannot change federal immigration policies, but I will work to make sure that the law protects all people living in Virginia.” That probably means he would make Virginia a sanctuary state and protect illegal aliens.
His position on abortion is designed to sound moderate, but it's result would be the same as those on the far left who oppose reasonable regulations on abortion and support unregulated abortion-on-demand. The first two paragraphs are meaningless bloviating. His real positions come in the other two paragraphs, where he makes it clear he opposes all the regulations on abortion that are design to protect women. In other words, Sarvis is like the far left liberals, what he advocates would still result, in reality, to unregulated abortion-on-demand. You might as well say that Sarvis is as pro-abortion, practically, as the far left. Pro-Life libertarians, who supported Ron Paul for president, have plenty of reason on this issue to not vote for Sarvis.
He also wants to legalize same-sex marriage, making it clear he's bought into the far left's agenda to destroy marriage with their crusade for “marriage equality,” which is really marriage inequality because it would legalize same-sex marriage and destroy real marriage. This position isn't libertarian at all, true libertarians say get government out of the marriage issue, not use the force of the state to mandate same-sex marriage and impose the value of the far left on everyone. Clearly, Sarvis is not a libertarian on this issue but a liberal fascist.
A libertarian-leaning blog called The Federalist takes Sarvis to task on his positions on issues and ask the questions if he is a “Libertarian-In-Name-Only.” Ben Domenech writes, on The Federalist, “While I certainly wish the debate had included Sarvis – it certainly seems justified given the polling, even if it turns out that his support is a reflection of soft “none of the above” frustrations – there’s simply no way I can be as accepting of his viewpoint...for a number of reasons.”
On taxes, Domenech quotes Sarvis as telling NBC's Chuck Todd that he doesn't actually favor tax cuts, but prefers finding savings by increasing government efficiency. This sounds like, to me, the RINO Republicans who oppose tax cuts and sell out to liberal Democrats on the tax cuts issue. That is not a conservative position and definitely not a libertarian position, and it's far from the views contained in the platform of the Libertarian Party.
This part, in Domenech's article, should be strongly damaging to Sarvis's odds of getting any libertarian votes, “Despite going through George Mason’s program, he doesn’t sound like he shares their views, telling Reason: “I’m not into the whole Austrian type, strongly libertarian economics, I like more mainstream economics and would have been happy to go elsewhere.” That makes sense, given that he’s endorsed more transportation taxes, too – including higher gas taxes and instituting a vehicle-miles driven tax in the state.”
Let's understand this, Robert Sarvis, the Libertarian nominee for governor, isn't really an advocate of Austrian economic free market views, which are the backbone of Libertarian/libertarian views on economics. This reminds me of the clip of Mitt Romney, running against Ted Kennedy in 1994, when he “dissed” Reagan-Bush. It showed that Romney was not a real conservative if he wasn't a Reagan-Bush supporter. Likewise, this quote proves that, ideologically, Robert Sarvis is not a libertarian, even if he is registered Libertarian.
In order to have received the Libertarian Party nomination for governor, Sarvis must have become a card-carrying member of the Libertarian Party. Joining the Libertarian Party requires that one agree to this: “YES, sign me up as a member of the Libertarian Party. To validate my membership, I certify that I oppose the initiation of force to achieve political or social goals.”
Sarvis's views in many areas are in violation of the pledge because he does favor the initiation of force, via state authority, in many policy areas, to achieve his desired political and social goals. It's clear that Sarvis is much more a liberal fascist than he is a libertarian.
It should not be lost, from that issue, that the quote above suggests Sarvis supports higher gas taxes and a “vehicle-miles driven tax” (VMT) as well. This latter position, of charging drivers gas taxes by miles driven, is another distant dream of the extreme far left. This is idea is so far left that even Barack Obama didn't try to implement it. But Robert Sarvis, it appears, supports it.
Domenech writes about that idea, “That last position is particularly nonsensical to me: a VMT, which generally requires a government GPS to be installed in your car to track your miles driven, is about the most anti-libertarian transportation tax you can think of – even those radical libertarians at Brookings think it’s a bad idea.”
Domenech sums up his opposition to Sarvis, citing the candidate's position on abortion as I have here, writing, “But the fundamental reason I can’t personally vote for Sarvis is his position on abortion – not that he’s simply pro-choice, but that he appears to take the most radical positions in favor of it in a way that makes no sense to me. This includes repeatedly stressing that as governor, he will attempt to roll back recently passed safety regulations on Virginia abortion clinics.”
There are others who agree. Goldwaterconservative, writing on RedState, writes about Sarvis's views on the issues, “And as far as social issues go, libertarians are not socially liberal, they are socially libertarian. There is a difference. Socially liberal, in the modern sense, means instilling progressive values using the force of government. Whereas Ron Paul would support getting the government out of marriage, Robert Sarvis heavily promotes passing gay marriage into law, which is the liberal position. Instead of taking the libertarian position of legalizing all drugs, Sarvis only favors making marijuana legal, which is the liberal position.”
This makes clear as well, that Sarvis is not a libertarian but more of a liberal or as some would say, a “liberaltarian.” His views are clearly more on the left, even on economic issues (which he calls “mainstream economics,” and right now mainstream economics are progressive, big government economics) are clearly very liberal and “progressive” and not at all conservative or libertarian or oriented in limited government and free markets.
Goldwaterconservative asks the big question, that Virginia voters even thinking about voting for Sarvis, should ponder: “If the whole Sarvis campaign is utilitarian in nature, not based no principle, what then is the justification for splitting the vote and allowing Terry McAuliffe to walk away with the victory?”
That is the bottom-line question. Clearly, voting for Robert Sarvis only helps to elect ultra-liberal, statist, big government, crony-capitalist, liberal fascist Terry McAuliffe, the candidate of the Clintons and the Obamas, as governor of Virginia. If you vote for Sarvis you might as well vote for McAuliffe. But if you don't want McAuliffe as governor, the only way to stop that is to vote for Ken Cuccinelli. I admit to libertarians that Cuccinelli is more conservative than libertarian, as I am, but he's far more libertarian than either Robert Sarvis or Terry McAuliffe. If you really want more freedom and less government, the only candidate to vote for on Tuesday is Ken Cuccinelli. Robert Sarvis is not a libertarian.
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