Interview With Virginia Libertarian Matt Waters

Matt Waters And His Family.

Matt Waters And His Family.

Matt Waters plans to seek the Libertarian Party of Virginia’s nomination for U.S. Senate in 2018 to run against Tim Kaine and an as yet unknown Republican.  He is currently collecting signatures to get on the ballot.

Mr. Waters lives in Alexandria, Virginia and has been a member of the Libertarian Party since 2008. He was raised in Hampton, Virginia and graduated from George Mason University. He is married and has five children.

We recently conducted an interview with Mr. Waters and we have included that interview below.


1. Have you run for office before? Why did you decide to run for U.S. Senate and not a lower office?

Waters: No. Never run before. I have been involved in many campaigns, mostly conservative Tea Party Republican, as a fundraiser. I looked at the 8th district here, the Fairfax Co. Alexandria area, and it’s heavily democrat. I would not have had the opportunity to get the message out. I wanted to go big.

2. How long have you been a member of the LP and the LPVA?

Waters: National LP going back to April 2008 (according to my membership card). LPVA, I’m a recent member.

3. Nick Freitas is considered the libertarian-leaning candidate in the Republican primary. He has received the endorsement of Rand Paul, Mike Lee, and a few others. If he wins the primary and runs in the general election, why should a libertarian/Libertarian vote for you over Nick Freitas?

Waters: If Freitas wins, let’s revisit this question. He is an underdog and that is partly why I’m running, to give voters a choice in November. This November here in Virginia is shaping up to be a mirror of what 2020 will look like: a Trump Republican, a milk-toast Democrat, and a Libertarian.

4. Has Trump done anything to advance the libertarian agenda?

Waters: Yes, he has made Republicans look awful, and that may incline disillusioned Republicans to look at Libertarians—but we must be Libertarian—not faux. But we should not bet on Republicans joining us, as if they haven’t gotten the memo yet, I don’t think they ever will. It’s kinda like smoking—if you don’t know it will kill you—well, keep smoking. That’s what Republicans are doing—still smoking.

5. Would you support a constitutional amendment pertaining to term limits or a balanced budget? Why or why not?

Waters: Yes on both. George Will had a great column on this the other day, where he pointed out the two professors at Harvard who have a sound plan towards getting our books to balance. I’d support anything Will is saying—as he may be the most respected Libertarian in the country. On Term Limits, yes, got to take the professionalism out of this. But the only risk here is you have a deep state of professional bureaucrats who never leave Washington. I’d think we need to term limit public service in certain departments at certain levels. We sort of do that with political appointees, but take a deeper dive here. Needs to be looked at.

6. Do you agree with Gary Johnson, the 2012 and 2016 Libertarian Party nominee for President, that our immigration system needs to be streamlined to make it easier for people to come here legally?

Waters: I lean that way. I also lean towards cutting up the welfare state that may be having a disproportional impact on illegal immigration. I would also want to encourage our Latin American friends to focus on rule of law, private property rights, regulation reform, all of the things that make it hard for individuals to succeed. The Acton Institute did a study on how long it takes for an ordinary Hatian to open a business – a person not connected to government—about 260 days. Yet, someone connected to government, who knows someone, took them like a week. These governments are bankrupt, corrupt, and hurt individuals. They need to get their own houses in order.

7. If elected, who would you caucus with? How would you be able to work with other elected officials in Washington, D.C. if you are the sole Libertarian candidate?

Waters: The others would caucus with me! I’d remain independent and attempt to be as non-political as possible—meaning, if R’s do something that makes sense, I’d vote for it; same with D’s. At some point the Libertarian Party will send a representative to Congress, and just like others in smaller parties who went to Congress before us, with the hope that one day the independents in this country will decide to do something different. They did it with Trump.

8. You have already spoken with members of the LPVA State Central Committee (SCC) about your candidacy and they seemed receptive. How do you feel about receiving the nomination to run as the LPVA candidate for U.S. Sentate in 2018?

Waters: I am excited about it, as we need to offer an alternative to the status quo.

9. Do you have petitions up online that volunteers can download to help get you on the ballot? How many signatures do you need?

Waters: I do have a petition on my Facebook page, and on signatures, we need to capture 400 signatures in each of Virginia’s Congressional districts. So 4,400 valid signatures in the 11 districts, and 10,000 overall.

10. What will be the issue(s) that your campaign will focus on?

Waters: If you ask Americans what the number one concern is in this country, they will tell you that their government is. They love the country, they are afraid of the government. If Libertarians cannot capitalize on this, then we may as well pack up and go home. The IRS was weaponized against the Tea Party; the Department of Education is making us dumb and dumber. The FDA is a failure that is responsible for millions dead. The Defense Department is anything but. I think of the snow days here in DC – they tell federal workers – “all non-essential employees” no need to come in to work. If you are non-essential on a snow day, you are non-essential every day. Cut Commerce, Education, HUD, Energy—all a total waste. I ask friends to “Name one thing the federal government gets right?” Blank stares. And all that for $4.5 trillion a year. C’mon, it’s time to wake up and cut spending. My budget would cut spending $1 trillion a year, and would eliminate all federal personal income taxes for all Americans through the Liberty Amendment—eliminating the 16th Amendment and replacing the income tax with NOTHING.

12. How can volunteers contact you if they want to get involved with your campaign?

Waters: Go to MattWaters.com, it points to my facebook page, and the webpage is going live soon.

13. A lot of times we hear that voting for a Libertarian candidate is a “wasted vote” or that it will help the Democrat or Republican win (depending on who you talk to). What would you tell voters who are concerned about your candidacy affecting the election in a way that they perceive as negative?

Waters: I think Democrats and Republican voters are wasting their votes; after all, what has Tim Kaine done in the US Senate? Name one thing. These voters are on their way to becoming non-voters because they know nothing changes.

14. It has been reported that you are pro-life. Can you elaborate on this a little bit? Would you seek to have a “Personhood Amendment” added to the Constitution?

Waters: Yes, 100% pro-life, more so than any of the Republicans running. I have worked for and with multiple pro-life organizations over the last 25 years. I became pro-life in the mid-80’s reading Jesse Jackson and Al Gore’s statements—both were pro-life at one time—and both sold out their principles seeking higher office. I won’t do that. I’m encouraged that the Democrats—the party of Death according to Ramash Ponnuru’s book, are actually entertaining supporting pro-life candidates. So on personhood, on a Life Amendment, etc, yes, I would support nearly anything that protects life. That is at its very heart what it means to be an American—after all, its life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Life is first on the list. The life position also falls under the Libertarian banner of “do no harm”.

ODLRN: Why We’re Endorsing Gary Johnson

Libertarian Presidential Candidate, Gary Johnson

2016 is shaping up to be a potential breakthrough year for the Libertarian Party, and there’s only one candidate who has the seriousness, credibility, and principles to lead the Libertarian ticket: the former Governor of New Mexico, and the most successful Libertarian presidential candidate in over thirty years: Gary Johnson.

As Johnson is the first to acknowledge, the Libertarian nomination process is open, competitive, and ongoing. So far we’ve had Steve Kerbel and Marc Allan Feldman on the show, and have found them both perfectly agreeable gentlemen. We’ve seen Austin Petersen and John McAfee bring a dash of controversy to the race.

None of them have given any indication that they could be, or are serious about trying to become, the next President of the United States. None of them have given any indication they could earn serious media coverage or vote totals for the Libertarian Party in 2016. Some of them say they intend to focus on building the party instead of doing those things. The more likely result, is that a campaign ostensibly focused on party-building instead of earning votes, will not do a very good job of either.  

We have also seen efforts from some quarters, to promote their preferred alternatives for the nomination, with grossly negative attacks and malicious smears and whisper campaigns. These attempts have been unpersuasive, and we don’t expect them to become any more persuasive with repetition.

When the delegates to the Libertarian National Convention gather in Orlando at the end of May, we will be presenting to the nation our choice for President of the United States. As a successful two-term Governor and entrepreneur, Johnson is not only qualified to be President, he’s better-qualified than what we usually get for the office. A self-made millionaire, experimental aircraft pilot, and world-class mountain climber and triathlete, he has a personal story to match his credentials.

On the issues and message, instead of preaching to the choir with obscure insider jargon, Johnson offers an outward-focused campaign that can sell libertarianism to the broad classically-liberal center of American politics. The vast unrepresented majority of fiscally conservative and socially liberal voters who have been disenfranchised by the two-party-only-system and are ripe to fuel the rise of a third major party.

Gary Johnson is the only candidate for 2016 who has demonstrated he can substantially improve our party’s vote totals, winning more votes than all other alternative candidates combined in 2012, and was the first nominee ever to win over a million votes. For the 2016 presidential nomination of America’s third-largest political party, there’s hardly a choice at all.

That’s why we here at the Old Dominion Libertarian Radio Network- Joe Enroughty, Jeff Kleb, Alex Butler, Jeffry Sanford, and Andy Craig- are unanimously endorsing Gov. Gary Johnson to be the 2016 Libertarian nominee for President of the United States.

Meet Dr. Marc Allan Feldman – Libertarian For President, 2016

Dr. Marc Allan Feldman - Libertarian Candidate For President, 2016

Dr. Marc Allan Feldman – Libertarian Candidate For President, 2016

Dr. Marc Allan Feldman is seeking the Libertarian Party’s nomination for President Of The United States.  Dr. Feldman is an anesthesiologist at The Cleveland Clinic in Cleveland, Ohio.  He has run for political office in Ohio before, most recently as The Libertarian Party Of Ohio’s candidate for Attorney General.  His Presidential Campaign is called “Votes Not For Sale,” and he is emphasizing getting big money out of politics.  Click here to watch his campaign announcement video.

Dr. Feldman was raised in Southern Maryland, just outside of Washington, D.C. Being around politicians throughout most of his childhood, he grew to dislike politics and felt there were no politicians worth voting for.  It wasn’t until he discovered the Libertarian Party at age 50, that he began to take an interest in politics and thus began voting.

He is running for President because he believes he can make a difference and his plan is very simple.  He titles it “BASE – My Progressive Plan to Shrink the Federal Government,” and here are the four practical steps it entails:

1. Balance the budget.
2. Audit all Federal agencies and laws.
3. Show the effectiveness of charitable organizations.
4. Exempt with a tax rebate for donations to certified effective charities.

1. Balance the budget. Retired admiral and former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mike Mullen, was not exaggerating when he warned that “the single biggest threat to our national security is our debt.” On the first day of my administration I would deliver to Congress a detailed balanced budget. While Congress debates and considers this plan, I will declare a National Fiscal Emergency and, by executive order, direct every government agency to apply strict controls to limit spending to available revenue. Not one single dollar will be added to our 18 Trillion dollar debt. The debt clock will stop dead.

2. Audit the Federal Government. Every agency and every federal law exist to serve a purpose, to make a difference in the world. Some may work well, and others poorly. The world is a complicated place, and there is a Law of Unintended Consequences. A law may be well intentioned, but cause no improvement at all, or at times make matters worse. For every agency and every federal law, objective measurable survey instruments will be used to give evidence whether they are working, making people safer, more secure, feeding the hungry, healing the sick, or sheltering the homeless. If the law is not working – it is repealed. If the agency is not improving the situation – it is eliminated. The job would be given to the Government Accountability Office whose mission is “to support the Congress in meeting its constitutional responsibilities and to help improve the performance and ensure the accountability of the federal government for the benefit of the American people. We provide Congress with timely information that is objective, fact-based, nonpartisan, nonideological, fair, and balanced.”

3. Show the Effectiveness of charitable organizations. The same survey instruments used to evaluate whether government laws and agencies are meeting their goals will be used voluntarily to evaluate the effectiveness of charitable organizations in meeting these same social goals. If charitable organization are equally or of greater effectiveness dollar for dollar than the federal government in making people safer, more secure, feeding the hungry, healing the sick, or sheltering the homeless or any other government social goal, that charity would be certified as an Effective Social Organization.

4. Exempt. If American taxpayers decide to donate to any charity certified as an Effective Social Organization, the taxpayer would not get just a tax deduction, but a dollar for dollar tax credit. This essentially causes an equivalent reduction in tax owed, making donations to Effective Social Organization free.

Because of the tax credit, billions of dollars being donated to these organization would cause a immediate revenue shortage. Because the budget is required to be balanced, spending cuts would be immediate and automatic. These cuts would be based on information, not politics. Because the government programs to be cut would be those that are managed more effectively by the voluntary charitable organizations.

This would lead to a simultaneous dramatic shrinking of the cost and intrusiveness of the Federal government and an expansion and empowerment of the private social safety net.

Dr. Feldman firmly believes that we have lost our way and are no longer following the Constitution, our founding document.  Here is what he had to say concerning the Constitution and our runaway government:

I don’t want a concealed carry gun permit.
I don’t need a same-sex marriage license.
I don’t have to have a marijuana grower’s permit.
I want freedom and a government that does not demand permits and licenses for things that are none of the government’s business. I don’t need all these permits and licenses, because I have a Constitution. Let’s respect that.

He has also stated:

I want my campaign to be a coalition, not a cult. I want people who agree with me that spending a billion dollars on a Presidential campaign is wrong. I want people who agree with me that we must balance our budget immediately. That we must honor our Constitution 100% and follow its instructions for a country that is more prosperous for all, more productive, and free.

Dr. Feldman wants to get big money out of politics not by creating more laws, but by informing the American people that they don’t have to vote for the big money candidates.  His campaign is accepting donations that are capped at $5.00 per individual person.  If you would like to make a donation to the campaign, click here.

Here is what his web site states about donations:

If you would like to become a supporter, please donate up to $5.

You cannot donate more.

You cannot make multiple donations with a total over $5.

That is not what we are about.

You will never receive a fundraising letter, fundraising call, or be asked to sponsor a fundraiser.

Because we do not do fundraising.

Because we think votes should not be for sale.

Dr. Feldman is tapping into a demographic that is usually ignored by both the Democratic and Republican Parties.  He states:

Are you one of the 100 million Americans who could have voted in 2012, but stayed home? Did you think you could not make a difference? Did you think politicians only represent the rich?
The only real voter fraud is telling people that their votes don’t count. They do. One hundred million struggling Americans can choose the next President. Even if you have to borrow money to pay bills. Even if you have had trouble with the law. Even if your English is not so good. You can have a President who will work for you and will represent you.
You deserve that.
It is your right.
Your vote is your voice.
Be heard.

He has also stated:

We should not allow people to hide greed, hatred, and lust for power behind a political philosophy.
Conservative values are good: responsibility, our Constitution, and religious faith.
Liberal values are good: fairness, tolerance, forgiveness, and charity.
Libertarian values are good: freedom, personal empowerment, and non-aggression.

There is nothing “conservative” about mass incarceration, police brutality, marijuana prohibition, or hating Islam.
There is nothing “liberal” about dependency, deficits, taxes, or hating Israel.
There is nothing “libertarian” about greed, bigotry, terrorism, or sexual exploitation.

Just because we are against an ever-expanding, intrusive, surveillance state, does not mean we are against all government.
Just because we believe government should not enforce morality, does not mean we are against morality.
Just because we do not believe that government should take care of people, does not mean that we should not take care of each other.

On Tuesday, August 4th, 2015, Dr. Feldman will be visiting Richmond, Virginia for the first time as a Presidential Candidate.  He will be speaking to The Patrick Henry Supper Club hosted by The Richmond Metro Libertarians at The Robin Inn Restaurant in Richmond’s Historic Fan District.  Why not join us for dinner (beginning at 6pm) and stay for Dr. Feldman’s presentation.  You do not have to be a member of the Libertarian Party to attend.  He is a refreshing change from all of the other candidates getting the major media attention.  Perhaps that is why they refuse to cover his campaign in their news cycles.

For more information about Dr. Feldman and his campaign, you can visit his web site or Facebook page.

Libertarian Lucas Overby Wins Congressional Debate

A special election is being held in Florida’s 13th Congressional District to elect a representative to fill the late Republican Bill Young’s Congressional seat.  The election will be held on March 11th, 2014.

Bay News 9 Post Debate Poll

Libertarian Lucas Overby won the Bay News 9 Post Debate Poll with 45%.

On Monday, February 3rd, 2014, Libertarian Congressional Candidate Lucas Overby won the 13th Congressional District (of Pinellas County, Florida) Debate with 45% in a post debate poll conducted by Bay News 9 (the network that hosted the debate).

One of the interesting things about this debate is that Lucas made history, becoming the first Libertarian candidate to participate in a nationally televised debate.  The debate was hosted by Bay News 9 and picked up by C-Span (it aired on C-Span 3).  Viewers all around the world were able to watch Lucas take on his Democratic and Republican opponents – and WIN!

For the first part of the debate, the Democratic and Republican candidates tried to ignore Lucas, referring to “my opponent” in their answers as if there were only two candidates in the race.  Bay News 9 debate hosts quickly brought Lucas into the conversation and it was clear at that point that he had a firm grasp of what his constituents in Pinellas County wanted to see in the candidate they will be electing in March.  His answers were clear and concise.  He was the only debate participant that followed the rules set forth by the debate moderators.

Libertarian Lucas Overby

Libertarian Congressional Candidate Lucas Overby, who is running for Congress in Florida’s 13th District.

Lucas’ opponents were not the only ones trying to ignore him.  Journalists across the board, who wrote about the debate tried desperately to hide the Libertarian’s views from the public.  Some articles barely gave his name a mention, while others mentioned his name a couple of times at best.  None of them provided ANY of his answers to the various questions asked at the debate.  You can view some of these articles here and here.  Even C-Span refused to put his name up on the screen when they would come back from the commercial breaks.  Lucas was undeterred and maintained a professional attitude for the entire debate.

The most interesting part of the debate came when each candidate was allowed to ask another candidate a question.  Alex Sink (D) quizzed Lucas on the Libertarian Party platform and this gave him a chance to explain the platform to viewers who may not be familiar with it.  David Jolly (R) directed his question to Sink, further bringing his claims that she is a carpetbagger, into the public eye.  However, the best question of all came from Lucas, when he asked Sink to explain the difference between “entitlements” and “welfare.”  After a long pause, and much stumbling over her own words, Sink gave an answer that clearly showed she had no idea what she was talking about.

Both the Republican and Democratic Candidates in the race were promoting the same, stale, ideas that have landed this country in it’s current economic mess.  The clear choice for Pinellas County is Lucas Overby.  He is a life long resident of the county (his opponents are not), and he has been travelling his district for a year, talking with voters and engaging them.

You can view the entire hour-long debate here.

You can also visit Lucas Overby’s Facebook page here or his web site here.

Gary Johnson Endorses Lucas Overby

2012 Libertarian Presidential Candidate Gary Johnson Endorses Lucas Overby.

Lucas needs your support to win on March 11th. You may donate to the campaign here.  You can sign up to volunteer via the web site.