EDITORIAL: Libertarian, alternative candidates are making some serious moves

Phoenix mayoral debate

(Heartland Newsfeed) — Libertarian and alternative candidates as of recent have made some serious moves in the past several weeks and it has become apparent that the voting public is seeking an alternative to the Democratic and Republican political machines.

Illinois gubernatorial race
In Illinois, Libertarian gubernatorial nominee Kash Jackson and Conservative Party nominee Sam McCann have appeared in five consecutive polls dating back to late June.

In the June poll from Victory Research, Jackson polled at 2% while McCann polled at 5%. At the time, Democratic nominee JB Pritzker had a 15-point lead over Republican incumbent Bruce Rauner. A recent poll published narrows the spread to 11% with a 4-point increase for McCann. In both polls from Victory, the undecided percentage has kept steady at 18%.

A July poll from Illinois Public Opinion paid for by Pritzker’s campaign declared a 13-point spread between Rauner and Pritzker, McCann at 10% and Jackson 1%. The real headline: 23% of the 423 individuals polls were undecided.

An internal poll from McCann’s campaign held in late July reflected the same 13-point spread between Rauner and Pritzker, with McCann receiving 11% and Jackson receiving 6%. 10% were undecided with 1% reflecting interest in voting for someone else, likely writing in Jeanne Ives.

Finally, the most recent poll from Marist College reports a 16-point spread between the two major party candidates with Jackson polling higher than McCann 6% compared to 4%, with 2% considering other options and 13% undecided.

The polling may be subject to change as Jackson appears before the editorial boards of the Chicago Tribune, Chicago Sun-Times and the Springfield State Journal-Register and begin his journey across all 102 counties during the months of September and October.

Wisconsin gubernatorial race
In two consecutive polls done by Marquette University, Libertarian candidate Phil Anderson has been the only candidate among five alternative candidates who has been earning returns of 6% to 7%.

Anderson received 6% among a pool of 601 likely voters with the race deadlocked at 46% between Republican incumbent Scott Walker and Democratic opponent Tony Evers. 2% of those polled did not have a preference.

Anderson would receive 7% among a pool of 800 registered voters with a two-point lead for Walker, 46%-44% with 3% undecided.

New Mexico U.S. Senate race
Who knew that the most liked and most hated liberty-loving, fiscally responsible two-time Libertarian presidential nominee would be polling so highly?

Even when Gary Johnson wasn’t running for office — while Land Commissioner Aubrey Dunn was the nominee — he was polling highly in several polls.

A hypothetical head-to-head poll in late July by Lux Research had Johnson defeating Democratic incumbent Martin Heinrich 42% to 40%.

Five consecutive polls from NSON Opinion Strategy, The Tarrance Group, GBA Strategies, Greenberg Quinlan Rosner and Emerson College have delivered high returns for Johnson, his lowest being 17% and highest being 24%.

The August 17-18 poll from Emerson College had Johnson in a 10-point lead in second place over Republican candidate Mick Rich, who has been of late an absentee candidate in the race.

Jake Leonard is the editor-in-chief of Heartland Newsfeed. He is general manager of Heartland Internet Media Networks and an active contributor to four newspapers for Pana News Group. He also serves as chairman of Tri-Counties Libertarian Party and Capital Area Libertarian Party, deputy candidate recruitment director for the Libertarian Party of Illinois and as chairman/co-founder of the Libertarian Party Millennial Caucus.

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