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Opinion: Why a Republican Is Endorsing Gary Johnson and Bill Weld

Trump is neither conservative nor Republican and does not have the temperament or the character to be president

Dick Zimmer
Credit: Amanda Brown
Dick Zimmer

As far as I can recall, I’ve never publicly endorsed any candidate except a Republican. I’ve split my ballot and have occasionally voted Libertarian, but always as a private matter.

This election is different.

Fifty years ago I joined the Republican Party because I agree with its founding principles of human equality and national unity. This year’s Republican presidential nominee apparently does not.

Donald Trump is neither a conservative nor a Republican. He does not respect the Constitution and does not have the temperament or the character to be president.

I came to know Hillary Clinton as one of the most left-wing members of her husband’s administration, and she has moved much farther to the left since then. Her vision for America is not mine; she believes in far too large a role for the federal government in our economy and in our private lives. And, like a majority of Americans, I don’t trust her.

I have heard the argument that a vote for Johnson/Weld is a vote for Hillary. Current polling does not support that assumption, but even if it did, I think the Republic can survive four years of Hillary as it has survived eight years of Obama. I’m not sure I can say the same about Trump.

I’ve never met Gary Johnson, but I admire his record as governor of New Mexico, where he was elected and reelected as a principled, fearless small-government fiscal conservative. So was Gov. Bill Weld, whom I have known and admired for decades.

I do not agree with the entire Libertarian platform, just as I have never agreed with the entire Republican platform. But the Libertarian ticket is clearly superior to that of either party. Both Gary Johnson and Bill Weld have far more experience and success as government executives than either of the major-party presidential candidates. They are both men of honor and integrity who deeply believe in the principles of the Constitution.

I am proud to endorse them.

Dick Zimmer is a former state assemblyman, state senator, and congressman from New Jersey. He was twice New Jersey’s Republican nominee for the U.S. Senate.

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