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The Illinois Libertarian Convention Over The Weekend Was Apparently Bonkers

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BLOOMINGTON, IL - In what normally is an ordinary, boring, third-party nominating convention turned into a battle royale free-for-all as the Libertarian Party voting members convened to Bloomington's Parke Regency Hotel this past weekend.

Running for the gubernatorial nomination were two first-timers and former pro wrestler and former GOP congressional candidate Jon Stewart, who was making his fourth attempt at public office.

After the first round of voting, Matthew C. Scaro was eliminated, and the frontrunner, Navy veteran Kash Jackson, failed to received over 51% of the vote, which moved the voting into a second round between Jackson and Stewart.

As tensions grew, the jumbotron slowly revealed the second round results . . . and it was a tie!

"At that point, the entire room erupted into chaos, cheers and confusion," said Stewart campaign manager Donny Henry. "There has never been a tie in our party's history, and with the contentious race between the candidates, this just added fuel to an already roaring inferno of ill feelings."

Tensions remained high as members then realized that three of Jackson's people were locked out of voting because they had left the room.

Then the true heartbreak moment came when former gubernatorial candidate Chad Grimm (a Stewart supporter) revealed that he was unable to get a second-round ballot because he misplaced his badge, so he could not vote and thereby give Stewart the nomination.

"It broke my heart but I felt bad for Chad and it's my fault too for not bringing my own wife, who could have sent me over the top for a win," Stewart said.

[Editor's Note: D'oh!]

"But to come from behind and to then be tied speaks volumes about my team, and I really think my public support for President Trump really turned off many Libertarians and Kellyanne Conway's failure to provide me assistance, I believe in the end, cost me the governor's seat."

As the third and final round of voting concluded, the embattled Jackson won the nomination by four votes. "Don't let anyone tell you that one vote doesn't count, it does," Jackson told the crowd of enthusiastic supporters.

The Libertarians still have an uphill battle as they must turn in three times as many signatures as the GOP and Dems to place their slate of candidates on the ballot in November.

"We plan on turning in over 50,000 signatures, but you never know how many will be enough after the challenges, it is a really unfair struggle," decried Krysta Walker, the Illinois Libertarian Party's Ballot Access Director.


Comments welcome.


Posted on March 5, 2018

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