Libertarian Party Turns 42

The Libertarian Party was formed 42 years ago today, on Dec. 11, 1971, in the living room of David Nolan in Denver, Col. Disillusioned Republicans, Democrats and political newcomers hope to create an alternative to the old parties.

The party held its first national convention held in June 1972, also in Denver. They nominated John Hospers, a philosophy professor at the University of Southern California, for president and Tonie Nathan for vice president. The party was only on the ballot in Colorado and Washington. The ticket only received 3,573 votes, including 1,000 write-in votes in California.

But in December, when the Electoral College met, Nathan became the first women in U.S. history to receive an electoral vote when a “faithless” Virginia elector, Roger McBride, cast his vote for Hospers and Nathan instead of Richard Nixon and Spiro Agnew.

McBride when on to be the Libertarian presidential nominee in 1976.

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