Document:The LINC '76 Committee

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This is a proposal to the LNC but unknown at which meeting this was presented by D Frank Robinson and Porter Davis.


A proposal to the National Executive Committee of the Libertarian Party recommending a concerted effort to elect libertarians to the Congress in the 1976 election.

Although there remains serious disagreement among libertarians on some issues, there is a greater agreement than ever before on the need for co-operation in advancing the principles upon which libertarians agree by concerted political action.

The Libertarian Party got off the ground by drafting a comprehensive statement of political principles and conducting a Presidential campaign to bring those principles to the attention of the national constituency. It should continue to emphasize libertarian fundamentals in future national campaigns.

The LP is up and flying. We have a substantial definition of our destination and a means for getting there. Yet it is hard to rebut critics who charge we are flying blind. It remains to be seen if the LP can navigate a course to its destination. What we need is a "flight plan."

The 1976 election will be something of a navigational checkpoint for the LP. We call it Checkpoint '76. If we don't fly efficiently to Checkpoint '76, there is a danger that some of our passengers and crewe will bail out and take a piece of the aircraft with them.

The LINC '76 Committee is a proposed 'flight plan' toward Checkpoint '76.

Minority parties have crashed and burned for many reasons. One factor has been an ill-considered emphasis on Presidential campaigns. Only a major party can present a serious contender for the Presidency. So, we must first become a major party.

A major party can gain and hold a significant degree of political authority in appropriate elective contests.

We contend the appropriate contests are those for the principal constitutional seat of power in the U.S government - the Congress - especially the U.S. House of Representatives.

If the LP will focus on gaining, holding, and mobilizing a sizable base of voting strength, first in the House and then the Senate, then we can have an optimum immediate impact on the political decisions of the country. We are calling for a sustained, unified, aggressive and resourceful campaign for position in Congress.

The election and effective operation of a libertarian congressional caucus would make the LP a major party. Are we to hurl ourselves into a campaign to win 10 million votes in a national election and LOSE, or are we to make those votes count at the congressional level and WIN?

An established libertarian caucus in the House and Senate would mean a pivotal bloc of men and women who could act consistently to neutralize the worst measures of both liberals and conservatives. By virtue of their power to dispose of these liberal and conservative maneuvers, they would gain the power to propose libertarian alternatives - revision, reform, repeal, and abolition.

We propose to launch a barrage of political "smart bombs" in the 1976 election. If we act intelligently and start NOW, it would mean the election of 20 to 30 libertarians to Congress in 1976.

We ask the Executive Committee to establish the LINC '76 COMMITTEE (Libertarian National Congressional Campaign Co-Ordinating Committee) to begin working now toward the election of libertarian congressmen in 1976.

We want to present the LINC '76 plan to the Executive Committee in some detail. We ask for your opinion and support.

The LP is up: now, let's fly it right through the front door of the Capitol!

# # # #

I agree with Kay Harroff's suggestion that LINC '76 stand for "Liber­tarians in Congress".

We now plan to submit LINC as coordinate with but separate from the Presidential Committee.

LINC will develop its mission by preparing for a conference for can­ didates, campaign managers and state chairmen to be held in the Spring of 1975. This conference will report on the implications of the '74 election in certain congressional districts. The conferee/swill draw up a set of tasks for LINC to accomplish in the 2nd Conference to be held in Mid-Winter '76 on campaign organization, tactics, finance, and opponent analysis. Then there may or may not be a 3rd conference in early summer '76 to deal with common themes, issues and troubleshooting.

We want to begin confering informally with all LP candidates to "de-brief" them about the '74 campaign and secure some of them as advisors to LINC in December-January. We want to do a demographic study for presentattion at the LINC ONE conference ('75).

We would have preferred to spend this summer and early fall raising funds for this work. We have not yet fully revised our schedule to re­flect this slippage. It could mean moving LINC ONE into summer-fall of '75 and we wanted to avoid a schedule conflict with the LP conven­tion. We would oppose conducting the LINC in conjunction with the LP convention. So. we are going to try to hold LINC ONE to the spring of '75.

We have no budget yet. Here's our guestimates:

  • LINC ONE phase: $7600.00 (Nov.'74 to spring '75)
  • LINC TWO phase: $10,000.00 to??? ( epends on candidate-client demands)
  • LINC THREE::No guess
  • post LINC TWO through election days Mo guess
  • post election and pre '78 planning: No guess

The LINC ONE phase on the only one we can even begin to consider. The low figue is premised upon contribution in kind of computer facility by Porter Davis.

(more later)