Brian Doherty on Robert Sarvis and the LP's Surprising Total in the Virginia Governor Race

Robert Sarvis, a former tech entrepreneur and
lawyer involved with the free-market think tank Mercatus, won
a surprising amount of the vote as the Libertarian Party’s
candidate in last week’s Virginia governor’s race—6.6 percent, or
around 145,000 votes. That was the third largest vote
percentage any Libertarian has ever won for any governor’s
race. The two who did better, Dick Randolph in Alaska in 1982 and
Ed Thompson in Wisconsin in 2002, had, unlike Sarvis, held elective
office in their states before. Sarvis copped the best third party
result for any party in the south for agubernatorial candidate in
40 years. Many Republicans reacted to Sarvis’ strong showing,
combined with Republican Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli’s narrow
defeat, with accusations that Sarvis caused Cuccinelli’s loss.
That was clearly not true. Although Sarvis was not the death of the
GOP in Virginia, writes Brian Doherty, he may represent a new lease
on life for the Libertarian Party not just in Virginia but

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from Hit & Run

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