With Rand Paul falling to nearly dead last in every measure of a presidential candidate’s prowess, is this the end for his 2016 campaign? TLR’s editor in chief Keith Farrell sat down with Libertarian Party Presidential candidate Austin Petersen to discuss Paul’s chances, and if there might be a chance for the Kentucky senator to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat.

Paul is polling behind John Kasich, Mike Huckabee, Carly Fiorina, Jeb Bush, and even his sworn rival and notoriously unpopular with conservatives Chris Christie. How did we get here? And how did Donald Trump manage to stay in the lead for so long, and destroy support for real conservatives in the race like Paul?

Farrell and Petersen believe that while Trump takes a horrible message and packages it beautifully, Paul takes a beautiful message and packages it horribly. Unable to shore up his libertarian base, Paul has been making more and more moves to appease the more hawkish base of the GOP, who would much rather have someone like a Rubio or Cruz. Paul can’t out neocon a neocon, and while he’s stood firm on issues such as the NSA’s domestic spying programs, he’s waffled on immigration issues, pushing an ultimately failed effort to temporarily freeze the passports of French citizens in the wakes of the attacks on Paris.

Is there any hope for liberty in 2016? Farrell and Petersen dive into the real nitty gritty, and don’t hold back in this 45 minute discussion of the 2016 race, war and foreign policy, and whether there are any chances for libertarians to grab a victory in the short term.

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Meet the hosts

Austin Petersen is the chief executive officer of Stonegait LLC, a for-profit consulting firm specializing in photo and video services. Stonegait also provides social media advice, political campaign expertise and grassroots organizing strategies to candidates for office or to brands looking for more exposure. Petersen is the editor in chief of The Libertarian Republic news magazine, one of the most read political news sites in the United States. He also hosts The Freedom Report podcast, which has 30,000 daily listeners. Petersen is the former Director of Production at FreedomWorks and was an Associate Producer for Judge Andrew Napolitano’s show, “Freedom Watch” on the Fox Business Network. Petersen built Judge Napolitano’s social networks boasting over 600,000 fans and millions of clicks a month. His work has appeared in Getty, Reuters, the LA Times, NBC and Time Magazine. He is also a frequent contributor on television appearing on Russia Today and on dozens of local radio shows. Austin grew up on a farm in the Midwest in a town called Peculiar, Missouri. Graduating from Missouri State University with a degree in the Fine Arts, Petersen moved to New York City after graduation to a pursue a career in media.


  • Clearly we have seen developing within our movement a divide if you will, between libertarians who are strong supporters of Rand Paul and those who since the 2012 election have moved away from asking for permission to be free and want nothing to do with a “democratic process” (especially after what happened to the Ron Paul delegates at the RNC). I happen to fall on the latter and my question to those who support Rand Paul is this: How much violence (force) will a Rand Paul administration use against me to bend me to the will of that government? ie. What happens if I don’t pay my taxes to a Rand Paul government? Does he stick to libertarian beliefs and let me go about my life freely or will i be subject to aggression?

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  • Hey Everyone, I’m new to but not to the Liberty Movement. I was paying attention to it in 2008 and finally drank the kool-aid in 2012. I’m posting here because I’ve been bootstrapping the development of a legislation alert app and I am hoping that it helps grassroots movements in shutting down bad legislation and getting good candidates elected. The basic idea is to connect our nation’s outspoken political activists (10% of the population roughly) with the remaining interested bystanders (about 49% of the population, representing people who care but prefer to remain anonymous) so that their combined leverage can shut down bad legislation or help get good legislation passed. Opinion data on pending bills is filterable by district and can be used to hold representatives accountable to the will of their constituency. Come election time, users can also easily compare their private voting history with a representative’s public voting record in order to make a much more informed vote than normal. There are two types of accounts: Mobilizers: These are public accounts that can be followed by other users and can post alerts on pending State and Federal legislation. This account type logs in via web browser and requires an invite code currently. Apptivists: These are private accounts that follow public accounts and vote on the bills they are alerted to by the Mobilizers. This account type logs in via a simple phone app and is open to anyone with an iOS device (Android coming soon!). Much more detailed info on the project can be found by scrolling down the homepage of our website: We’ve recently launched our MVP of the application and I’ve set up an invite code that can be used by people from if anyone here would like to register as a Public Mobilizer account. As this is my attempt to help promote liberty in our country, we have decided to make Apptivism free to use for both account types. Also, this app is meant to work together with other social media services like FB and Twitter. It’s not a replacement. That’s what is for. 😉 If anyone here has any questions, I’d love to answer them and I’d love to get feedback on the whether this type of system is something that could be useful to the liberty community. Thanks in advance! Cheers! seth PS: Here’s a brief video explaining the system:

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  • I recently read Hoppe’s Democracy: The God That Failed and it brings up a number of questions. I sent him an email with these questions and am still waiting for a reply. But I thought I’d put them out there in this group as well. There are five series of questions and this is the first batch. Is a covenant community binding for all time? Or can a member of a covenant society secede from it just as he ought to be able to secede from the state? Can the terms of the covenant be changed in the future and if so how? Can the covenant specify that all rules and restrictions covered in the covenant can be changed through democratic means – in other words through voting? And if so, can they do specify that this be done by simple majority rule or other ways as specified in the covenant? Further to this – am I correct in assuming that the terms of the covenant inhere to the property and not the person?  For example, I own property in a strata development which is covered by such a covenant. It binds me to the bylaws of the Strata Corporation and these rules can be changed by the members democratically at a meeting. The strata council enforces the rules, manages the budget, etc. I also pay strata fees which are analagous to taxes if this were a municipality. (The strata fees are actually more than the municipal taxes I pay, though the city provides a lot more services.)  And these rules inhere in the property, so if I sell it, the buyer is bound by the covenant. But I cannot secede from the covenant. In effect, a covenant community is really a mini-government, but organized as a contract rather than as a political entity. But in practice, is there really any difference? I have written on my blog about this a few times. Most notably here: and here: and here:  The latter contradicts the first two as I have had some change in thought on this. Feedback appreciated.

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  • With more and more Republicans backing off on their support for Trump, even withdrawing their support, could the Republican Party as a whole decide to reject Trump? It is too far into the election campaign to put withdraw Trump and to put forth another candidate but could they decide, as a party, to endorse Libertarian Party candidate Gary Johnson? Would they? Wouldn’t that be sweet!

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  • I find it odd that the Libertarian candidates never touch base on this issue in their campaigns. I want all anarchists, Libertarians, Anarcho-Capitalists, ect too answer.   The photo below shows the “Great Society” leader, and the other who was accused of being a Communist insurgent shaking hands over the Voting Rights Act of 1965. I guess this photograph sums-up on what version of history one will refuse to accept, and the other which will be accepted as the “norm.”  

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