Day Three of the Jack News Guide to the Libertarian Party Presidential Race in 2020.
Editor’s Note: The introduction to this series includes links to each of the nine profiles.
Bill Weld, the former two-term governor of Massachusetts and Vice Presidential candidate for the Libertarian party in 2016 is a major figure in the race for the Libertarian Presidential nomination in 2020. That is if he decides to run.
Many credit him with providing a massive boost to credibility, media coverage, and fundraising when he joined Gary Johnson on the 2016 Libertarian ticket. However, his deviations in the 2016 race from libertarian orthodoxy on some issues riled up critics, and he only secured the vice-presidential nomination narrowly on the second ballot after a heated floor fight.
Additionally, many were also upset over his comments defending Hillary Clinton against accusations by Donald Trump.
Against those potential negatives, though, Gov. Weld still has serious accomplishments to his credit. As governor, he fired 10 percent of the state’s workforce on his first day in office. And presided over rare year-over-year reductions in state government spending.
Weld embraced the label “libertarian,” even before 2016, and frequently invoked the line “coercive taxation is theft” in his speeches. Widely respected by the media and both sides of the two-party aisle, few candidates would have a better chance of making it onto the coveted debate stage.
Bill Weld has the ability to cross party lines and bring anti-Trump Republican support to a Libertarian campaign in 2020. His deep loyalties and many friends might relish a 2020 face-off between Bill Weld and Donald Trump. For many anti-Trumpers, Weld’s involvement would bring legitimacy to the Libertarian ticket.
Although never confirmed, some have speculated that Bill Weld may be considering a run for the U.S. Senate. However, privately he has been discussing how he might best offer help and advice to Libertarian candidates in 2018. His party voter registration is Libertarian. Could this all be a sign that he intends to seek office again with the Libertarian party? Possibly.
If he decides to run, Weld may prove to be one of the more qualified candidates looking at the prospects of the Libertarian race in 2020. He would offer a potentially strong war chest, experience, media attention, and lots of friends on all sides of the aisle. However, would he be able to overcome the hard radical element of the Libertarian party at the national convention?