The Libertarian presidential nominee is polling at 5 percent. Who are her followers?
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Jo Jorgensen, the Libertarian Party's nominee, is the only presidential candidate besides Donald Trump and Joe Biden who is on the ballot in all 50 states. One recent poll has her pulling 5 percent nationally, and another has her at 4 percent—perhaps enough to cover the spread between the president and his Democratic challenger.
Who is supporting the 63-year-old Clemson psychologist? Jorgensen tells Nick Gillespie that she's drawing "people who believe that they should be able to make their own decisions. People who believe that they should have a right to decide their child's education, which health care they want and which health care they don't want, [how] to control their retirement dollars, and that they should be able to make a choice of whether or not they wear a mask." (Jorgensen herself masks up in public spaces and in businesses that request customers wear them.)
Jorgensen wants to cut the size and spending of government in half, bring overseas troops home, legalize drugs, and reform police and the criminal justice system. "If I could sit around the kitchen table of every American family in this country," she says, "I would win by a landslide."
Responding to the canard that voting for a third-party candidate is a wasted vote, Jorgensen says that voting for a major-party candidate out of tribal loyalty is the true missed opportunity. To Republicans, she says, "If you live in a solidly red state [and] and you don't like what Donald Trump has been doing, if you don't like the bigger government he's given you, then voting for him is a wasted vote." Her message to "Democrats, especially Democrats in California, in New York," is similar: "Don't vote for Joe Biden. If you want more war, if you want more of your rights taken away, if you think that you have a right to have access to marijuana, a vote for him as a wasted vote, because he's not going to [give you] what you really want."
Edited by John Osterhoudt. Additional Graphics by Lex Villena.
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