In the United States, the perception is that presidential races are basically punching matches fought between candidates from the two major parties, (R) and (D), and any third party candidate is seen as someone who's wanting to get a little attention. However, if a person looks at the past hundred-odd years of elections in the United States, that's been far from the truth: Third-party candidates of prominence have been much more than the odd hiccup here and there. For better or for worse, the elections of 1912, 1920, 1924, 1948, 1968, 1980, 1992, 1996, and 2000 would not be what they were, had it not been for the influence of a third (or even a fourth) candidate on the stage.
The American presidential election of 2016 marked an interesting point in Libertarian politics. Though Gary Johnson did not win the country's vote, there were 4.5 million voters who did vote for him and his running mate William Weld. Having the Libertarian party on the ballot in every state went a long ways toward boosting those numbers. Otherwise, voters would have to do a write-in, which is not always easy.
Now, ahead of the 2020 presidential campaigns, it is a fight to regain the Libertarian party's inclusion on the ballot in a number of states. At present, seventeen states
still have not granted the Libertarian party a spot on the ballot, including such states as Alabama, Pennsylvania, and Minnesota. The (R) party in the state legislature of Arkansas has even gone so far as to change the requirement of third party candidates to gather 10,000 signatures and require them to gather almost triple that number (26,746). Needless to say, this prompted a lawsuit ( arktimes.com/arkansas-blog/201…
We shall see how the Libertarian party moves forward as 2020 looms ever closer, and I will work to keep a list tracking states that have (
) or don't have (
) Libertarian party ballot access secured.
Feel free to comment if you have an update from your state!