March 18, 2008
Three Given Defender of Liberty Awards
Every year, the LPM hands out awards to both party members and members of the community who have worked to support and implement the principles we fight for. Traditionally, these awards are given out at the LibertyFest Banquet the weekend after the general election, but instead were given out at the Campaign Conference on March 8 in Livonia. Awards were given to the following individuals.
Promotor of Liberty
Scott Avery Boman
Since the very early 1990’s Scott has been one of the LPM's most prolific candidates.
In 1997 he became only the second libertarian endorsed by the Detroit News when he ran for Detroit City Council. Scotty has been our top of ticket candidate a couple of times as State Board of Education and Lt. Governor and was the top third party vote earner for three straight elections when he ran as WSU BOG.
Not only has Scott been an active candidate, he has done a lot behind the scenes. He serves as party chair in 2007. For years Scott has been working the scene in Detroit, especially the WSU area by manning outreach booths as the Fourth Street Fair, Dally in the Alley, and Wayne State University, where a LP group was active during part of the 1990s.
After serving as chair, Scott has made efforts to ensure that the LPM is represented on the internet, by not only working on the LPM website, but by taking part in LPM related content on MySpace, Wikipedia, and MeetUp. His efforts to spread the libertarian message by taking advantage of new forms of media is something the rest of the party should try and emulate.
Spokesperson for Liberty (2 awards)
It can be argued that Rep. Ron Paul’s 2008 Presidential Campaign has done more to spread the message of libertarianism than anything else in recent history. When Michigan had their Jan 15 primary, Ron Paul’s 4th place finish was his best showing up until that point. Ron Paul’s 54,000 votes were greater than any previous LP presidential candidate in Michigan (41,000 Ed Clark 1980).
While much of his campaign activities were the result of spontaneous order and the internet, the actual chair of the Michigan campaign was Leslie Roszman. She was to go between for the national campaign and the local MeetUp groups and responsible for distributing campaign materials across the state. The Ron Paul campaign has reenergized the libertarian movement.
Spokesperson for Liberty (2 awards)
Councilman Martin Howrylak
Martin was a member of the Libertarian Party until he ran for County Commissioner in 2006 for Clawson and Troy under the Republican ticket.
But as a member of the Libertarian Party he has been a tremendous and honorable Spokesperson for Liberty in the following actions:
• While attending the University of Michigan, he started the Student Libertarian group.
• He won a seat on the Troy City Council, and was then re-elected amidst a televised attack on him being a Libertarian. He was accused of being “for” giving drugs to children—just because he was a Libertarian. A totally outrageous accusation by the other candidate knowing that Martin has never taken any drugs and hasn’t drank any alcohol other than the wine, the blood of Christ during Sunday Mass. Martin received the highest vote total as he entered into another 4 year term on Troy’s City Council.
• Being successful in defeating the pension program council wanted to award themselves
• Involved in getting the council meetings televised and fought to protect the right of citizens to speak at council meetings.
• With our other Libertarian Councilman, Andy LeCureaux, on SOCCRA, reducing costs & returning $1.5 million to member communities.
• Defeating the Convention center & baseball field that would have cost residents $60 million.
• Actually cut the City’s property tax rate three times (2002, 2006 & 2007)
On Saturday, March 8, 45 candidates and activists packed a meeting room at the Best Western in Livonia for the Libertarian Party of Michigan's 2008 Campaign Training Conference. The program included a Libertarian Presidential straw poll. None of the Presidential candidates attended (all were invited, but many begged off to attend one or more of four state LP conventions across the country). However, the Wayne Allyn Root and Bob Jackson campaigns recognized the importance of the Michigan LP's block of 34 delegates, and sent campaign personnel to speak on behalf of their candidates. Mark Schreiber of Indiana spoke and fielded questions for Wayne Allyn Root, as did David Yardley of Michigan for Bob Jackson.
The results of the balloting were:
Wayne Allyn Root 11 (37%)
Bob Jackson 8 (27%)
Ron Paul 2 (7%)
Steve Kubby 2 (7%
Christine Smith 2 (7%)
Mary Ruwart 1 (3%
Walter Williams 1 (3%
George Phillies 1 (3%)
Daniel Imperato 1 (3%)
None of the Above 1 (3%)
As noted, 45 people attended, but only 30 cast votes in the straw poll. Some attendees looked at the long ballot, decided they had no idea who to vote for, and chose not to vote.
The Michigan Freedom Conference (Embassy Suites Hotel March 16th), was promoted almost exclusively through Ron Paul campaign meetups. It attracted about 100 participants, and was a prime example of how the contacts made in that campaign can continue to serve as a network to promote liberty through the political process.
The Master mind and organizer of the event was Sean House. House promoted the event online and reserved the venue. He invited speakers with a variety of political affiliations. The result was a truly non-partisan meeting for the cause of liberty.
The list of speakers read like a virtual who's who of Michigan's libertarian and small-government conservative movements:
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