During the latter part of the campaign, the devoted Larry Sharpe supporters were dubbed “Sharpies”
The bad news? Many of us close to the Larry Sharpe campaign thought we would make more of a numerical impact. With a few districts outstanding, 90,739 New Yorkers cast their vote for Larry Sharpe, representing about 1.6% of voters. The last Sienna poll had Larry at 3% and campaign-paid polling was much higher. Some of us were blinded, I believe, by the boundless enthusiasm and excitement that we and Larry encountered throughout the state. Of course, this must be happening everywhere, right? Unfortunately not.
The good news? Having exceeded 50,000 votes, the Libertarian Party of New York has won automatic ballot access and official party status in this state for the first time in history. Make no mistake, we are on an upward trajectory. The challenge is this: we have built an amazing core of supporters who brought love, hope, and support to the Larry Sharpe campaign. We need to build on the core. One great candidate, without preexisting name recognition, cannot break through the New York establishment, perhaps one of the most powerful in this country. A devoted core, however, ready and willing to show up, campaign, and provide a platform can do a great deal to put a dent in it.
Here in New York City, we have a plan and we would like you to join us. Larry Sharpe won 11,189 votes in the Five Boroughs. In 2014, Michael McDermott won only 3,695. We need to show people that there is a base here; a veritable movement. We will do this in three ways:
- Government engagement. New York City is a one-party town. The City establishment sees little engagement from the electorate, but quite a bit from activists. We will attend hearings on bills; we will submit testimony; and we will establish a presence in that community. When there are no advocates for personal freedom and government restraint, our voices ring loud and we may become a constituency officials would look to satisfy or at least not alienate.
- Activism. We will engage with the press on the issues of the day. We will protest when necessary. We will educate the populace. Follow us on Twitter @LibertariaNYC where this is already happening, reach out if you would like to write, draw, or produce video, and watch out for new content.
- Elections. We endeavor to run serious campaigns like Larry’s. This is the Party’s wheelhouse and now with party status, we no longer have to expend our efforts on petitioning. We now need quality candidates, volunteers, and fundraisers.
What can you do now? Come to a county meeting or join us on the Slack (link in the Contact Us page) where we are coordinating our work. Currently, we are looking to submit a report to the City Council’s Charter Revision Commission and any and all are welcome to assist.
We are a diverse group able to bridge communities and build an alliance for individual liberty in the face of an ever expanding municipal, state, and federal government. Only we can unite the groups victimized by the progressive state–the middle class, immigrants, sex workers, family court and ACS victims, drug war victims, gun control victims, renters, and on and on. Only we can offer hope for the individuals who see the information age as an opportunity for less government, not more. Only we can appreciate the City as society’s flourishing, not the government’s. Welcome to the new Freedom Base. Please stay with us and, even better, get involved.