September 24th, 2010
05:14 PM ET
4 years ago

Libertarian leader: Republicans should apologize, not pledge

(CNN) - One day after Republican leaders unveiled their legislative agenda-dubbed "Pledge to America" - a top voice in the Libertarian Party said it is erroneously titled; instead, he says, it should be called "Apology to America."

The 21-page pledge was revealed Thursday and represents the Republican Party's proposed legislative agenda should they re-take control of Congress in November's midterm elections. It includes promises to slash taxes, reduce the size of government and reverse President Obama's health care reforms.

Libertarian Party executive director Wes Benedict ripped into the document and its Republican authors on Friday, saying in a statement "there are so many lies, distortions, hypocrisies, and idiocy in this document that it's hard to know where to start."

The Libertarian Party favors the smallest possible federal government and advocates for free market economics and civil liberties. They often accuse the Republican Party of not representing the small government values they are said to support.

Benedict listed off a number of things Republicans should apologize for and dismissed their proposals as simply token gestures to the American public that would fail to reduce the size of the federal government or its debt.

"Republicans must love it when Democrats expand government, because it gives them the opportunity to propose small 'cuts,' while still ending up with huge government," Benedict said.

"The best way to restore American prosperity would be to implement the straightforward 28 planks of the Libertarian Party platform, or even just follow the Constitution," Benedict added. "I mean the actual Constitution, not the Republican re-write that allows for every federal government program imaginable."

A spokesman for Boehner did not immediately respond to CNN's request for a response.

House Republicans have taken heat over their proposals from Democrats as well. The Democratic National Committee put out a web video on Friday slamming House Republicans for "[breaking] their 'Pledge to America' within hours of making it."


Filed under: John Boehner • Libertarian Party
soundoff (67 Responses)
  1. GOP Scorched Earth Politics

    AIN'T THAT THE TRUTH! What a pathetic dog and pony show. Flannels, dockers, rolled-up sleeves, starched shirts. Who you foolin' GOP??? Not even your Libertarian sidekicks believe this trash. HOW are you going to pay for a new arms race with Russia. The Cold War ended 20 years ago you goons.

    September 24, 2010 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  2. Ellie

    EXACTLY. After what BUSH/CHENEY and the Republican CONTROLLED congress/house did for 8+ years, Americans should be DEMANDING an APOLOGY from these greedy and selfish jerks!!!

    September 24, 2010 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  3. gt

    if they do what they did last time..... boot em out again,,,,but what we have now its a disaster,,,

    September 24, 2010 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  4. LacrosseMom(the real one)

    RIGHT! The Republicans/Teabaggers are NO Libertarians! Believe me! In an article in the New York Times today titled "Downhill With the GOP" Nobel Prize winning economist, Paul Krugman says that the so-called "Pledge to America" will ADD ........ about ....... $3.7 TRILLION to the deficit........ $700 BILLION MORE than the Obama Tax Cuts to Small Business & the Middle class!

    Listen folks, we have been here before the GOP RULED both House and Senate from January 1995 until January 2007, when the Democrats took a slight majority in the elections of 2006. IF anyone wants to give the GOP power back...... they need their heads examined!

    BEWARE AMERICA OF GOP GIMMICKS!

    September 24, 2010 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  5. GI Joe

    If the democratic party could get rid of all the DINOs in the House, it would be much better.

    Too many corporatists to suit me. Even John Roberts' Supreme Court caters to the far right in every case. ALL FOR BIG BUSINESS RULE OF THIS COUNTRY.

    September 24, 2010 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  6. ABM

    Thank you! Now we need him and others to take it viral, on the air, out in the open, and on posters. Call these liars out and vote them out!

    September 24, 2010 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  7. GI Joe

    They specifically said they would vote for small business - and turned around the end of the day and only ONE republican out of the whole bunch voted for small business. THEY LIE !

    September 24, 2010 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  8. Squigman

    How about a little jail time. Last time I looked, any person, or group responsible for the mess they reigned over got to lose their tan, while setting behind bars. There will never be justice, as long as these white collar criminals are allowed to hide behind political ideology, and call it govenance.

    September 24, 2010 05:45 pm at 5:45 pm |
  9. the real ib

    Look who's talking about lies. Funny

    September 24, 2010 05:47 pm at 5:47 pm |
  10. LouAz

    This sounds like some New Jersey Shore TV show or Orange County Wives and she said she said . . . What did these "Parties" do before 30 second sound bites and TV advertisement ? Politics is truely theatre nowdays.

    September 24, 2010 05:48 pm at 5:48 pm |
  11. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    This ain't no pledge people, it's "A HANDWRITTEN PUPPET" repeating word for word what the puppeteer says and that's the only thing specific about it. But give the all the GOP credit for standing there like puppets do. I can't believe these Republicans have been in Washington 18 months and this is what they rushed to come up with. Too much time lost doing nothing.

    September 24, 2010 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
  12. Marie MD

    Turns out that the crapola the rethugs are trying to sell in 2010 is the same crapola that newt boy and the orange man and others were trying to sell in 1998!!!!! boner's wording were the same. Why doesn't CNN dig deeper. You know were I heard about it? On the Daily Show! A comedy program that has more real information about the lies of the party of NO. It's shameful that a comedy show stands up against them while faux news and the new PNN can't/won't.
    The party of NO still has nothing to give us.
    Their talking points – family, marriage and love thy neighbor because if you don't I'll make sure I meet your husband in a bathroom in MN!

    September 24, 2010 05:53 pm at 5:53 pm |
  13. Mah

    The GOP's Pledge to America : Unless you're a rich, white, wholesome, Jesus-loving Christian, we don't care about your prosperity or protecting your rights.

    September 24, 2010 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  14. dacohenz

    The Republicans are the biggest phonies around. They are liars and actors. It's amazing the positive press they are getting considering thery have not had one idea in the last two years. They haven't done anything for the average person since the beginning of time, yet a lot of angry but uninformed people will still vote for them. That's really sad.

    September 24, 2010 06:04 pm at 6:04 pm |
  15. Tom

    I'd appreciate an apology from the GOP. For not standing up for the rights of gay people, for not stepping up for the rights of non-christians, for letting corporate interests control washington, for allowing partisan politics and political back scratching to rise above Americans, and a host of other reasons. To me, this pledge isn't worth the paper it's printed on. Until they can drop the partisan and fall in line normality of washington, they shouldn't be put back into power. Dems should be stripped of their power too.

    September 24, 2010 06:09 pm at 6:09 pm |
  16. Saboth

    I scoffed at their pledge. They act like the Dems got us into this mess, when it was Republicans and G.W. They had control of 2 branches of our government for almost 8 years, and ignored all the warning signs. It's their advocation of a "free market" that got us into the housing mess. Sure, you can blame Clinton, but if they didn't like what he implemented, they had 8 years while they controlled 2/3rds of our government to fix it. The way I see it is this: Democrats want to spend lots of tax dollars and expand government...which is bad, but they at least try and help the people when they do so. Republicans like to spend lots of money, and expand the government...to help themselves and big corporations. So either way you are screwed, but at least with dems, you might get some healthcare reform, credit card reforms, consumer protections, etc out of it.

    September 24, 2010 06:09 pm at 6:09 pm |
  17. Marcus

    The 'Pledge' – FINALLY an idea from the GOP instead of the 'No, no, no and NO!!!' – is a failed idea, even Conservative economist see its flaws.
    But that won't prevent the GOP to push it down our throats if they get the House back...

    September 24, 2010 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
  18. django

    poor Libertarians...like the chihuahua nipping at the heels of a pitbull...even the wacky teabaggers get more press...at some point the teabaggers. libertarians, republicans, democrats, the Corporate Gods that rule them and the Godless fools that enable them will figure it out...the ppl have moved on, youre irrelevant..

    September 24, 2010 06:20 pm at 6:20 pm |
  19. Dave W

    This moderate Democrat has to agree with the Libertarians on this one.

    September 24, 2010 06:22 pm at 6:22 pm |
  20. Ray

    As long as the GOP isn't talking about getting rid of at least 75% of the fed gov, they can't be taken seriously as conservatives.

    September 24, 2010 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  21. Hall for President

    the looked just like the last piece of paper they had that they said was a budget.

    September 24, 2010 06:25 pm at 6:25 pm |
  22. WhatIsTheDifference

    I know that the Daily Show is not the be all end all of political debate but Thursday's show (9/23) they played a montage of clips for the recently released Pledge to America and clips from the past when the Contract with America was released. The soundbites from then and now were almost word for word. Quite entertaining.

    September 24, 2010 06:25 pm at 6:25 pm |
  23. John Bernard

    I don't think that any party – Democratic, Republican, Libertarian, Tea Party (wait, that aint no party!), etc. has the answers or recipe for recovery that America needs. How about a simple mix of (a) tax increases, (b) spending cuts, and (c) fiscal austerity/responsibility by us taxpayers? How can we possibly get the country back on track for the next generation without making these difficult sacrifices today? We can't tax-cut our way out.

    September 24, 2010 06:26 pm at 6:26 pm |
  24. John

    That all the REPUBLICAN PARTY is all about LIES,RACIST and they trying too tell you about the same old stuff they always do.No body trust SARAN PALIN all she does is Lies she racist and she don't know what she taking about,she dumb as a box of rocks. and TEA PARTY backed some very weird people that try too dress and look like Saran Palin and she fly around on a broom stick. I just bet America people are smarter than too put these people in office.

    September 24, 2010 06:27 pm at 6:27 pm |
  25. oracle

    Nothing about the out and out racism in the Obama/Holder Dept of Justice today CNN? You know - the Black Panther voter intimidation episode? Well?

    September 24, 2010 06:27 pm at 6:27 pm |
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