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May 17, 2024 11:42 AM UTC

Libertarian Leopards Finally Eat Colorado Republicans' Faces

  • 3 Comments
  • by: Colorado Pols
Janak Joshi, dressed up like a doctor even though he surrendered his medical license in 2008.

As Ernest Luning reports for the Colorado Springs Gazette’s political blog, a pledge offered by the Colorado Libertarian Party to Republican candidates as part of a deal brokered by Colorado GOP chairman Dave “Let’s Go Brandon” Williams to spare GOP candidates, or not depending on whether they sign, a Libertarian “spoiler” opponent, has resulted in a significant decision in the swing CO-08 Republican primary, with the Libertarian candidate declaring he will withdraw from the race–as long as former state Rep. Janak Joshi wins the June 25th primary:

Colorado Libertarians are spoiling for a fight with Republicans over right-leaning voters, but they’ll step aside in the state’s most competitive congressional district if Janak Joshi wins the GOP nomination there.

That’s because Joshi, a former state lawmaker from Colorado Springs and one of two Republican primary candidates in the battleground 8th Congressional District, signed on this week to a pledge unveiled last summer as part of a pact between the state’s largest minor political party and the Colorado GOP.

It was part of an accord reached by the the chairs of the two parties — the GOP’s Dave Williams and the Libertarian’s Hannah Goodman — in an effort to prevent Libertarians from fielding potential “spoiler” candidates in closely contested races where, the theory goes, their presence on the ballot could siphon off enough votes to elect a Democrat by a plurality…

In 2022, a Libertarian candidate running in the inaugural swing CO-08 congressional race earned several times the margin of victory in votes, which made this pledge on its surface seem like a smart idea. But as Republican candidates rejected the Libertarian’s loopy pledge based on any or all of its wacky provisions like appeasement of Russia and abolishing the nation’s intelligence agencies, the Libertarian “purity pledge” became more or less an abandoned sideshow.

Until now. Joshi’s signature on the Libertarian pledge, and the potential elimination of what was in 2022 a decisive factor in Rep. Yadira Caraveo’s narrow victory over state Sen. Barbara Kirkmeyer, could be Joshi’s biggest selling point in the June 25th Republican primary. It’s not that primary voters agree with the points in the Libertarians’ nutty pledge, or expect Joshi to care or even know what he signed. It’s all about the several thousand vote advantage Libertarians sitting this tight race out could hand to the Republican nominee. As long as that nominee is Janak Joshi.

As Jason Salzman reports for the Colorado Times Recorder, Libertarian candidate Eric Joss is fully lucid about his role as a threatened or, if needed, actual spoiler, vowing to stay in the race for the express purpose of screwing over Gabe Evans if Evans beats Joshi on June 25th:

Joss says he will remain in the CD8 race if Joshi is defeated by Evans, whom Joss says is “clearly no friend of liberty.” Evans hasn’t signed the Libertarian pledge, though he has not ruled out signing it.

Asked if he was worried that he might take enough general-election votes from Evans, if Evans wins the primary over Joshi, to swing the race to the Democrat Caraveo, Joss said he plans on “stealing votes from both sides.”

Spoiler alert: no he doesn’t. Everyone understands that Joss will pull votes from the Republican candidate. It’s the whole reason for the Libertarian “purity pledge.” We seriously doubt that Gabe Evans will sign on, since that would saddle him in the general election with the obvious problems the pledge raises for reality-based candidates.

And so the pledge once heralded as a way to help Republicans win could spell chaos for Republicans in their most competitive Colorado race this election year.

Comments

3 thoughts on “Libertarian Leopards Finally Eat Colorado Republicans’ Faces

  1. I'm not certain about the White House Physician's office … but expect even it requires an active license.

    as a reminder, CO Times Recorder wrote:

    Joshi’s statement that he “retired” leaves out the full truth on how his career as a physician actually ended. In 2006, Joshi received a letter of admonition from the State Board of Medical Examiners for failing to meet medical standards in his treatment of a 76-year-old patient. Following an assessment, it was recommended that Joshi retrain in a nephrology fellowship. After he did not do this, his medical license was suspended in 2007, until Joshi surrendered his license in 2008.

    I suppose the title may still be accurate — he did earn an academic doctorate degree.  But wearing a white coat and stethoscope after 16 years out of the actual practice of medicine is ill-advised. I've not seen Gabe Evans dressing for his positions from that long ago — Army veteran and police officer.

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