In the days after the tragic shooting at Sandy Hook, the New York legislature shocked the country by rapidly passing one of the most restrictive gun laws in the nation. Capitalizing on the heartache of residents and legislators alike, NY Gov. Cuomo was even able to convince a GOP-dominated State Senate to support the gun control legislation. Now, a well known Libertarian has thrown her hat in the ring to challenge one of those Republicans.
Meet Gigi Bowman
From her home on Long Island, Gigi Bowman has become one of the most recognized leaders of America’s liberty movement. A wife, mother and real estate agent, Bowman wears many hats in her crusade to defend the Constitution and its civil liberties. She tirelessly fights for the repeal of police-state laws like the Patriot Act and NDAA, while simultaneously promoting pro-liberty candidates for office on her website LibertyCandidates.com.
Now, Bowman is asking for those past candidates and supporters to return the favor. She has just announced her candidacy for New York State Senate in the upcoming 2014 election. The popular Libertarian candidate shouldn’t have too much difficulty raising an army of campaign volunteers to help her cause. The ‘Energizer bunny’ of libertarian election campaigns, Gigi Bowman is as well known for her always-bright smile as she is for helping outnumbered and out-funded liberty candidates.
Four years after she tragically lost her daughter in 2003, Gigi Bowman began getting involved with former Texas Congressman Ron Paul’s 2008 Presidential campaign. In 2007, she organized a Long Island Ron Paul campaign group. Immediately after the election, she began a local chapter of Campaign for Liberty. By 2009, Bowman had launched her own website – LibertyCandidates.com. The site researches and endorses pro-liberty candidates from all political parties. With a team of 125 researchers, Bowman’s site endorsed 235 liberty candidates in 2010, of which, 12 reportedly went on to win their races.
Also in 2010, Bowman organized SaveLongIsland.org and coordinated demonstrations against federal agencies like TSA and its intrusive body scanners and pat-downs. The following year, the libertarian activist and organizer was appointed the New York State Caucus Leader for the free and fair elections organization Free and Equal. Bowman was also elected the Vice Chair of the Suffolk County Libertarian Party.
The extensive and impressive list of projects, programs and campaigns Gigi Bowman has been responsible for could fill the resume of any lifelong activist. But she did all that in the span of just five years, and she isn’t finished yet.
Gigi Bowman for NY State Senate
“My name is Gigi Bowman and I am a Liberty Candidate running for office because I am tired of the government infringing on our liberties and rights,” Bowman begins her candidacy announcement. She then does something that must be very painful for her to do, as any parent in the same situation could attest – Gigi Bowman details the personal tragedy that led her to get involved in politics.
“I lost my daughter to suicide in 2003,” Bowman explains, “At the time, I was a mother who believed in what doctors told me because I believed that the health of my children was in their best interest. I have since learned that the overreach of government combined with lobbying and corporatism is not in our best interest.”
Gigi Bowman goes on to sum up the sentiments of most pro-liberty Americans saying, “Since that time, I have watched as the loss of liberty has become more and more apparent. From the DHS to the Patriot Act to the TSA to FISA to the NDAA – through anti-liberty legislation we are groped, probed, spied upon and are at risk of getting detained without a trial and for no good reason. We have succumbed to endless war supporting the Military Industrial Complex and have been lied to in order to support corporate entities.”
The libertarian candidate proudly and passionately tells voters exactly why she’s decided to officially announce her candidacy for the New York State Senate, “I am stepping up today to run for office because I cannot sit back and watch any longer as our beautiful country and the freedoms and liberties that our founders fought so hard for are diminished daily by political parties and administrations that are working against the people, not for the people.”
The Republican incumbent
Explaining why she’s launching her 2014 election campaign so early, Gigi Bowman shows her political prowess. In an email to this author, she writes, “I’m campaigning early because I had to. My opponent, Carl Marcellino, has had this job for 18 years.” Bowman also points out that the Republican incumbent sided with the Democrats by voting for the state’s just-passed gun control law.
That law, labeled “the toughest gun control law in the nation” by many news outlets, passed two weeks ago in the overwhelmingly Republican-controlled New York State Senate. Gigi Bowman’s 2014 opponent – State Sen. Carl Marcellino (R-5th) – was one of those Republicans voting in favor of the gun ban and additional restrictions. The legislation was passed with a coalition of 30 State Senate Republicans and 6 Democrats. It was also strongly pushed, with accusations of behind-the-scenes arm-twisting, by Democratic Governor Andrew Cuomo.
Three days ago, the New York Times described the ‘behind-the-scenes’ pressure Democratic Governor Cuomo put upon the State Senate’s Republicans to join his gun control coalition, including Gigi Bowman’s upcoming opponent Marcellino.
‘First, there were threats, delivered in phone calls or through intermediaries,’ the Times reports. Describing what would happen to any Republican Senator who didn’t back the gun control measure, the publication continues, ‘He would seek to dissolve their fledgling coalition by pressuring his fellow Democrats to reunite; pummel recalcitrant Republican senators for months with a seven-figure advertising blitz backed by national groups like the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence; and campaign on Long Island, where 9 of the 30 Republican senators live.’
While the 2014 NY State Senate election is still a long way off, incumbent Republican Carl Marcellino seems to be playing right into the Libertarian Bowman’s hands. And if current political trajectories continue, Gigi Bowman may find herself backed by Long Island Republicans against a Republican incumbent backed by the Democratic Party and its Democratic Governor. Quoting New York political pundits, that may have been the price Gov. Cuomo paid to get his landmark gun control legislation passed in preparation for a 2016 run for President.
His support for gun control aside, Gigi Bowman explains that Carl Marcellino has had the job for 18 years, “It’s time for him to go.” Reminding voters of why she’s running, Bowman says, “It is time for individuals like myself to take action – to step up and stop the overreach of government from infringing on our country if we ever intend to give our offspring a chance in this country. And we have to start locally.”
A quick visit to Sen. Marcellino’s website shows that he’s not the most responsive or transparent elected official. Attempting to obtain some information about his vote for the recent gun ban, Marcellino’s website is not only absent any details or information about his vote or position, the site hasn’t been updated since the middle of October 2012. The incumbent appears to be proving the old axiom true – you get what you pay for. And ‘we the people’ don’t buy elected officials, special interests do.
For more information on Gigi Bowman’s campaign for NY State Senate, visit LibertyCandidates.com.
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