Gov. Gary Johnson says NH the best, Michigan the worst political climate

By Grant Bosse on August 4, 2011
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(MANCHESTER, NH) Gary Johnson loves campaigning in New Hampshire, and he swears he doesn’t just say that when he’s talking to New Hampshire voters. Johnson says the Granite State’s First in the Nation Primary gives him and his rival candidates the best chance to connect with voters, learn what they’re concerned about, and communicate his message of smaller government.

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Johnson shared his experiences on the campaign trail with New Hampshire Watchdog during a stop at the Manchester Farmers Market on Thursday.  Yesterday, as the Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped more than 500 points, Johnson argued that the debt ceiling deal didn’t fool Wall Street into thinking Washington finally managed to get federal spending under control.

“What politicians could have done is created a certain environment that spending is going to be cut, and the reality is just the opposite, and I think Wall Street is reflecting that,” Johnson said.  “The solution period is stop printing money.  The solution is cutting government spending by 43%”

Earlier in the day, he pushed his support for the Fair Tax to replace the federal income tax. Johnson argues that taxing consumption is a less disruptive way for the government to raise the revenue it needs, without punishing productivity. He says consumers can control what they purchase, and how much they pay in taxes.

“Two things about the Fair Tax.  One is that it’s fair.  It’s going to effect everybody equally.  There’s going to be no more loopholes, no more ‘this person, or that person, or this group doesn’t pay taxes.’  Every body will end up paying taxes,” Johnson adds.  “And it’s simple.  Doing away with the IRS, no more IRS.”

While Johnson is starting a three-day swing through the Granite State, many of his fellow Republicans are concentrating on Iowa, where the Ames Straw Poll will test the organization muscle of Michelle Bachmann, Tim Pawlenty, Ron Paul, and Rick Santorum. Johnson says he’s betting on New Hampshire, which has a history of vaulting lesser known candidates into national prominence.

“It’s not quite as expensive here in New Hampshire, and I am putting my chips on the table here in New Hampshire,” Johnson explains.

He says there’s plenty of time for a long-shot candidate, or even someone not yet in the race, to capture the attention of voters before New Hampshire’s first primary early next year. Texas Governor Rick Perry is reportedly close to entering the GOP field, while Rudy Guiliani, George Pataki, and Sarah Palin are also potential presidential candidates.  But he says the longer a candidate waits to get into the race, the less credit they’ll get from savvy New Hampshire voters.

Watch New Hampshire Watchdog’s full interview with Gov. Gary Johnson.

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3 Comments For This Post So Far

  1. Jared
    9:15 pm on August 4th, 2011

    A Gary Johnson administration would improve business certainty and do away with the IRS. I can get behind that.

    More video from an earlier Manchester, NH, visit here:

  2. nick
    1:55 pm on August 5th, 2011

    …who is Gary Johnson? Governor of where? Shouldn’t this be included in the article?

  3. Niles Aronson
    3:01 am on August 6th, 2011

    Governor Johnson, who has been referred to as the ‘most fiscally conservative Governor’ in the country, was the Republican Governor of New Mexico from 1994-2003.

    A successful businessman before running for office in 1994, Gov. Johnson started a door-to-door handyman business to help pay his way through college. Twenty years later, he had grown the firm into one of the largest construction companies in New Mexico with over 1,000 employees. Not surprisingly, Governor Johnson brings a distinctly business-like mentality to governing, believing that decisions should be made based on cost-benefit analysis rather than strict ideology.

    Johnson is best known for his veto record, which includes over 750 vetoes during his time in office, more than all other governors combined and his use of the veto pen has since earned him the nickname “Governor Veto.” He cut taxes 14 times while never raising them when he left office, New Mexico was one of only four states in the country with a balanced budget.

    Term-limited, Johnson retired from public office in 2003. An avid skier, adventurer, and bicyclist, he has currently reached four of the highest peaks on all seven continents, including Mt. Everest.

    In 2009, after becoming increasingly concerned with the country’s out-of-control national debt and precarious financial situation, the Governor formed the OUR America Initiative, a 501c(4) non-profit that promotes fiscal responsibility, civil liberties, and rational public policy. He traveled to more than 30 states and spoke to over 150 conservative and libertarian groups during his time as Honorary Chairman.

    He has two grown children- a daughter Seah and a son Erik and currently resides in a house he built himself in Taos, New Mexico.

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