(Huffington Post) Lawsuits are common in politics, but there was one filed recently that is not common at all: someone has brought an antitrust suit, alleging that the major political parties have monopolized politics, and it is not exactly some crackpot who did it. The plaintiff is Gary Johnson, who is the Libertarian Party’s nominee to be President, and who was not long ago the Governor of New Mexico. Governor Johnson’s campaign filed suit on Friday in a California federal court, alleging that the Democrats, the Republicans, and the Commission on Presidential Debates have conspired to exclude other candidates in violation of the Sherman Antitrust Act. Governor Johnson seeks to enjoin the Presidential debates until other candidates are permitted to participate, so as to “restore competition and a level and honest playing field amongst those persons seeking the presidency . . . .”
Initially I thought the press release announcing the suit might be bogus; it went out on Friday, and was picked up by quite a few libertarian websites, but has been largely ignored in the mainstream media. But it’s for real, as both the campaign and the federal courts’ online dockets database confirmed for me.
While this suit may not get far in the courts (as I will explain), I think that is kind of a shame. I hope and expect that the campaign’s real motive is not so much to win the case as to make a point that will get some attention. The point in filing this suit with only the one, sole antitrust claim seems to be to say that the parties have become just another oligopoly, like the other business oligopolies arrayed against the public interest. Among other things, the complaint makes a nice point of the noisy protest of some years ago by the League of Women Voters, when it withdrew its sponsorship of the presidential debates in the late 1980s. The League–hardly a radical or imprudent group–thought the debates had come to be no less than a “fraud” and a “hoodwinking of the American people.”
Read the rest HERE!