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A few years ago, a political party called the Libertarian Party held its first national convention in a park in suburban Cincinnati.
In 2016, the party hosted its first presidential candidate forum, and now the party is poised to launch a second one in 2018.
“The political revolution we’re in is happening in a lot of different ways,” said David Becker, the founder of the Libertarian National Committee.
“We’re getting to the point where a lot more people are coming out and saying, ‘Hey, I’m a Libertarian.'”
Becker is the founding director of the libertarian think tank Cato Institute, a leading voice on the issue of drug legalization.
The group was formed in 2013 by Becker and David Boaz, a former vice president at the Drug Policy Alliance, an advocacy group for reformers.
Boaz left the Drug Free America Foundation in 2016, and Becker took on a leading role in crafting a new version of the party’s platform.
The Libertarian Party is a political ideology that focuses on limited government and free markets, while opposing the use of force and regulation to achieve the goal.
It has received support from prominent libertarians such as former Vice President Joe Biden, as well as Republican presidential candidates including former Texas Governor Rick Perry.
Its platform includes a pledge to decriminalize marijuana and support the legalization of gay marriage.
The party has not endorsed any candidates for president, although some prominent libertarians are backing the Libertarian nominee Gary Johnson, a third-party candidate for president.
The Libertarian platform also includes language calling for the federal government to end its campaign-finance regulation of the industry and the legalization and regulation of recreational marijuana.
“Libertarianism is a strong and positive force in the American publics mind,” Becker said.
“It’s the only party that’s actually talking about the war on drugs and it’s also the only political party that has endorsed Gary Johnson.”
The party’s current platform states that the Libertarian party is “a coalition of libertarian-leaning, anti-government, small-government Americans who believe in limited government, limited government in the way we think about it, limited spending, limited regulation, a free market economy, limited military spending, and the rule of law.”
The party’s position on the war in Afghanistan is a reference to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, as is its position on illegal immigration, which it calls a “national security threat.”
Becker said the party has a “strong base of support” in the conservative movement and is “on the right side of the political spectrum.”
“We’re a grassroots movement,” he said.
“People are getting more and more informed.”
Becker said the Libertarian platform reflects the party as a whole and not just the specific views of its founders.
For example, he said, the Libertarian manifesto says that “there is no such thing as a libertarian who is a liberal.”
The document also calls for a “balanced and compassionate” approach to social issues, including abortion, gay marriage, immigration, and drug legalization, which the party says “do not represent the views of all Libertarians.”
Becker called the platform “tough and clear.”
“There’s a lot that’s true,” he added.
“But you can’t be all things to all people.”
There are also signs that the party can grow.
Last month, it nominated the Libertarian candidate for New Mexico governor, who is not a member of the Republican Party.
Becker said Libertarians are gaining momentum among the younger generation, who are becoming more “libertarian-minded.”
“People are looking at libertarianism as a way to solve the problems that they face,” he explained.
“The problem with politics as usual is you can get stuck in a rut.
Libertarians can be a part of the solution.”