In the biggest turn of events in Libertarian politics a sitting Republican U.S. Senator has endorsed the Libertarian candidate for Senate.
SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Former New Mexico governor and current Libertarian U.S. Senate candidate Gary Johnson picked up the endorsement of Republican Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky on Tuesday in his effort to unseat an incumbent Democrat.
Paul shunned Republican nominee Mick Rich, an Albuquerque construction contractor and newcomer to politics, in favor of Johnson, who was elected governor of New Mexico twice as a Republican before running for president in 2012 and 2016 on the Libertarian ticket.
Democratic Sen. Martin Heinrich of Albuquerque is seeking a second term in the November election.
Johnson and Paul share an enthusiasm for extremely limited government. In a news release, Paul praised Johnson as a “true fiscal conservative” and for his dedication to reducing the size of government and improving services as governor of New Mexico.
Senator Paul had this to say about Johnson:
Gary Johnson is a true fiscal conservative. As Governor, he reduced the size of government while improving services. He cut taxes, and he set what may be a record by vetoing more than 700 unnecessary pieces of legislation.
His leadership on issues of government overreach, protecting Americans’ Fourth Amendment rights against mass surveillance, and common sense foreign policy is sorely needed in the United States Senate, for New Mexico and the nation.
He will be an important ally and a critical independent voice.
This endorsement has the potential to throw the U.S. Senate into limbo.