LP prez updates

Here is how a Reason blog entry teased their comprehensive article about the LP presidential race:

Wayne Allyn Root, Bob Barr, Mike Gravel, and self-identified “descendent of Emperor Nero,” Daniel Imperato; David Weigel presents a field guide to the wildest Libertarian Party nomination fight in decades.

The article contains a lot of interesting quotes from delegates about the candidates and the race.

These presidential candidates have signed the Restore ‘04 petition: Steve Kubby, Christine Smith, Barry Hess, Mary Ruwart and George Phillies.

Libertarian presidential candidate George Phillies and former talk show host Joseph Bell have something in common: They don’t like Bob Barr. The former wants help in defeating Barr while the latter doesn’t think Barr should run for office at all.

Mary Ruwart supporter Melinda Pillsbury-Foster defines neocons in this manner:

In the mid 60s the word ‘conservative’ was hijacked through the efforts of people who were then called Rockefeller Republicans. Rockefeller Republicans were a small cadre of individuals who were using politics to ensure their continued subsidies through military adventuring by the US and a lock on the sale of gasoline. Their motivations were not ideological but to profit using any means necessary.

Today we know their replacements as NeoConservatives.

She then criticizes Wayne Allyn Root and asks people to support Mary Ruwart.

Here are the results from a recent online poll conducted at the Libertarian Party website:

What type of LP presidential candidate do you want? (408 votes)

A “purist” - 30 (7%)

A long established Libertarian activist - 22 (5%)

Someone who can communicate our basic message to voters outside our party - 356 (87%)

47 Responses to “LP prez updates”

  1. Susan Hogarth Says:

    I posted some comments on this “poll” and what it means at my blog:


    I conclude with:

    My answer to the question “What type of LP presidential candidate do you want?”?

    Well naturally, I want a “purist” longtime activist who can effectively communicate our basic message to voters outside the Party.

    Fortunately, there is one: Mary Ruwart.

  2. silver Republican Says:

    That’s a silly definition of neo-conservative. Neo-cons were a dialectical antithesis to the Rockefellor Republicans. In reality, however, its still the center right moderates of the Gerald Ford ilk that dominate the party.

  3. G.E. Says:

    silver Republican is right. The lady defining neocons is way, way off the mark. The neocons are not the descendents of the Rockefellars—they are the bastard offspring of the two groups that opposed the Rockafellars (NR/Goldwaterites and pro-war Democrats).

  4. Scott Frost Says:

    I agree with Susan Hogarth’s “concluding” comment above. For full disclosure, I also support Mary Ruwart.

    How can a candidate who is not a purist effectively communicate our positions? If we nominate somebody who leans towards socialism, neoconservatism or even just conservatism, as some of our candidates do, that candidate is likely to confuse the public as to what it means to be a libertarian.

    I also think that we should consider implementing a rule for future elections requiring all Libertarian Party presidential nominees to have been members of the party for some period of time, perhaps two years or even longer. The more successful we become with ballot access, the more our party becomes a target for opportunists. We have several candidates who joined the party concurrently with the announcement of their presidential campaigns.

    Some of these candidates advertise their “life memberships”—which began only a few months ago, in some cases. I am simply more comfortable with the people who have been in the party a while and proven themselves.

    Susan is quite right when she says that we should want all three of the qualities listed in the unscientific “poll.” Only a handful of the candidates actually fulfill all three qualities. They happen, in my opinion, to be the same ones who signed the Restore ‘04 petition: Mary Ruwart, George Phillies, Christine Smith, Steve Kubby and Barry Hess.

  5. G.E. Says:

    Scott - We don’t need that rule. If the delegates are dumb enough to select a Johnny-Come-Lately, then let them. There could be an exception. If Barr were 100% (or even 51%) libertarian, then I would embrace his candidacy, as would many others who are now opposing him.

  6. Scott Frost Says:

    G.E.—That’s a fair point, but what if several non-libertarians decided to seek our nomination all at once and they were able to stack the convention and no true libertarian even got a shot? Maybe that can’t happen, but I do wonder where these candidates who just joined the party were before.

    It just doesn’t make sense to me that somebody who suddenly saw the light is now qualified to represent those of us who have known the same things for much, much longer.

    I was initially excited by a Barr candidacy, until I saw his platform, which I view as half way between Ron Paul and John McCain. I do think Barr is sincere, however. He’s just not libertarian enough, in my view, to represent the the party whose platform is (allegedly) based on the libertarian philosophy.

  7. Scott Frost Says:

    In Bob Barr’s defense, he has put in some serious time and energy on behalf of the Libertarian Party for close to two years. It is the people who joined the party, seemingly, in order to run for president who make me uncomfortable.

  8. Thomas M. Sipos Says:

    Scott, it’s my understanding the Christine Smith is also a Johnnie-come-lately.

    Furthermore, her original website in 2007 wasn’t so pure. She then quickly “evolved” (same as Root), and now sells herself as Ms. Purity.

  9. G.E. Says:

    Scott - The party needs to be strong enough to stand up against coups. After all, there is nothing that would have precluded W.A.R. or Gravel or anyone else from joining the LP two years ago. Being a member of the LP doesn’t make one a libertarian.

  10. G.E. Says:

    And it seems that the main thing Bob Barr has been doing for the past two years (outside of demanding more government to fight narcoterrorism, working with the anti-libertarian ACLU, and bankrolling Republican candidates) is blowing smoke up the asses of LPHQ employees and laying the groundwork for his takeover plot.

  11. Bill Woolsey Says:

    The “long time Libertarian activist” criterion is the worst.

    We should pick a member of the club?

    Sadly, we have no good candidates for any high office who has been a long time Libertarian activists.

    I would strongly support a celebrity candidate for high office. Or even a wealthy candidate who was willing to devote millions of dollars.

    That they had never done any Libertarian “activism” before would not be a problem with me.

    My “dream candidate” for the LP nomination for President is former New Mexico governor Gary Johnson. Ron Paul would be great for this election cycle.

    As for “purists,” I find it a bit dangerous to a good campaign and certainly not necessary. As long as a candidate sticks to a set of incremental reforms and leaves the impression that people who like these sorts of things are libertarians, they have done their job.

    I am not sure how Ruwart would campaign. I am pretty sure that her most controversial positions will dog her to November. The neo-libertarians and the Constitution Party will work at it. Wait and see.

  12. Scott Frost Says:

    Thomas—Interesting. I did not know that about Christine Smith. I was under the impression that she had been around longer, though I had not heard of her until recently.

    G.E.—I agree that people could join the party in advance and that would not make them libertarians. You make another good point.

    You’re probably right that such a rule is not necessary. However, I would not be surprised, in the future, to see more people jumping to the LP after failed bids elsewhere. Maybe that will just focus more attention on our real libertarian candidates. I hope so.

    I have certainly not been won over by Bob Barr, but I am willing to give him the benefit of the doubt and hope that he continues to evolve in a more libertarian direction. I had hoped that Barr was more libertarian than he turned out to be. He seemed to be quite supportive of Ron Paul, so I had assumed that his platform would be much closer to Paul’s than it actually was. I am a bit disappointed in Ron Paul for not being more supportive of the LP since so many of us were so supportive of him.

    You mentioned Barr’s donations to Republicans. That bothers me, also. I hope that, when Ron Paul dispenses his millions of dollars of left over campaign money, he gives some of it to Libertarians, but I won’t be surprised if he doesn’t. (And why did Ron Paul not buy more ads when it counted?!)

    We have to make sure that our message and platform are not diluted by people who want to “reform” the LP.

    At any rate, as I stated above, my full support is behind Mary Ruwart for the LP presidential nomination.

  13. Eric Rowe Says:

    Silver Republican,
    You say, “In reality, however, its still the center right moderates of the Gerald Ford ilk that dominate the party.” But that’s exactly who the neocons are!

  14. Alex Peak Says:

    I voted for “Someone who can communicate our basic message to voters outside our party.”

  15. Honey Porter Says:

    Gordon, was that your last survey?

  16. Eric Dondero Says:

    I have a question for Melinda Pillsbury-Foster?

    If the Rockefeller Republicans are now “NeoCons” than what about the Moderate Republicans?

    Are Ripon Society, Log Cabin Club, Republicans for Choice and Republicans for a Majority now “NeoCon”?

    ARe Olympia Snowe, and Arlen Specter and Gordon Smith now considered “NeoCons”?

    And how does she jive Moderate Republicans support for Pro-Choice with the NeoCon love of big government regulations especially in regards to social matters? Doesn’t that fly in the face of Moderate Republicans supporting Pro-Choice, Gay Rights, and Medical Marijuana?

    Seems to me NeoCon would be more aptly described as someone who is Anti-Gay and Anti-Choice. Howard Phillips maybe? Or, or even Ron Paul.

  17. Susan Hogarth Says:

    “And how does she jive Moderate Republicans support… with…”

    One of my editorial pet peeves - I suspect you meant ‘jibe’:


  18. Peter Orvetti Says:

    It would be interesting to see a poll of LP members asking which potential nominee(s) they would vote for in the general election. I wonder how many would NOT vote for Barr, Root, etc., against McCain and Co.?

  19. Steve LaBianca Says:

    I didn’t even take part in this survey/poll. I am sure that Shane Cory will try to spin this as something which supports his major party sympathies.

    As long as Shane Cory is the National Director, I will abstain from the LP website . . . it can’t have anything of value to offer while a non-libertarian is heading up the National Office. Oh I suppose that characterization holds true for Bill Redpath, aka gun control supporter, as well.

  20. G.E. Says:

    E.D. - No. Historically, American conservatives have been anti-war. It has been liberal Democrats who’ve gotten us into every major war until this one. And it was conservatives who opposed them. Thus, a NEO-CON (New Conservative), is one who claims to be a conservative, but is actually a liberal on foreign policy. For example: You.

  21. Honey Porter Says:

    Steve LaBianca Says:
    April 30th, 2008 at 1:30 pm

    I didn’t even take part in this survey/poll.

    Steve, it was up last week I believe. Maybe Gordon could put it back up and you could take it then.

  22. Jeff Wartman Says:


    Shane has been wrong on a LOT of things, but to claim that he has “major party sympathies” is just plain stupid.

  23. Eric Rowe Says:

    Dondero, this debate has come up on these boards before and you’re missing it as badly now as you have every other time. Nobody is saying that social liberalism is the single defining feature of neo-conservatism. But it does happen to be the case that the two go together. Neo-conservatives are moderate (i.e. big government) Republicans who are military hawks with the goal of democracy building. They are typically pro-abortion, but not always by any means. You, for example, are a very prototypical neoconservative. There’s really no need to debate the issue, it’s a term that has a clear historic usage, and were you so inclined to base your statements on fact, you would have no difficulty looking it up.

  24. Lidia Seebeck Says:

    I’ve heard rumors about the Barr platform. The guy worries me for reasons that should be obvious to most LP members who know me even a little.

    I mean he’s apologized for being a hawk and a drug warrior, but I haven’t heard his current take on lifestyle stuff and I really am getting a confusing picture on how sincere his conversion is.

    I mean, I’d love to see the LP get five or ten percent—heck, it would be nice to break one percent at least. But I don’t want to do that if it means nominating a guy who is a double-speaking demopublican.

    I like Ruwart—I know that she, at least, is not a Republicrat and as a woman she would be an effective counter to Clinton. I keep looking at Barr and Gravel as well—the former worries me for lifestyle choices, the latter worries me on healhcare and taxes and possibly education.

    I’d really like to see Barr and Gravel each do a video that explains all those thorny issues to a Libertarian audience. I know Gravel will do a YouTube response to a YouTube video if asked. I’m really strongly thinking of doing several to him—1. Where does he stand, really, on animal welfare vs. animal rights…2. What does he think of homeschooling specifically….3. What does he think of the FDA war on alternative medicine and how would alternative medicine fit into his health ideas? ...4. Would he be willing to consider ratchet mechanisms to incrementally reduce the tax burden, which would be conceivably possible with his plan.

  25. Susan Hogarth Says:

    I mean, I’d love to see the LP get five or ten percent—heck, it would be nice to break one percent at least. But I don’t want to do that if it means nominating a guy who is a double-speaking demopublican.

    This idea that Barr can get 5-10% is just not realistic. He’s an unexciting speaker who is uncomfortable (therefore poorly spoken) with Libertarian ideas. He habitually bills himself as a ‘conservative’.

    The LP has data on how at least one ex-Republican congressman performed as a LP candidate. It wasn’t anywhere near 5 or 10 per cent. It was 0.5%. In my opinion, there is no reason to think that Barr would do significantly better.

    And Ron Paul was/is much more Libertarian and (my opinion) personable and on-message than Bob Barr. He was animated when speaking to a small audience in Kansas, and not afraid to declare himself - and the LP - for freedom. Heck, I’m here now because he was there then. But I didn’t go hear him speak - and then vote for him and call myself ‘Libertarian’ forom then on - because he was a ‘former congressman’. I knew the LP was something different because Ron Paul was something different. Bob Barr is not ‘something different’.

  26. Susan Hogarth Says:

    I’ve heard rumors about the Barr platform.

    No need to worry about ‘rumors’; his positions - such as they are - are listed here:


  27. Lidia Seebeck Says:

    Actually I’ve seen that but there is supposed to be something a lot more detailed out there including more on individual freedom issues

  28. Michael H. Wilson Says:

    This survey is poorly worded and unscientific to boot. Which means it’ll probably show up in the national newsletter anytime now.


  29. disinter Says:

    Nothing like promoting a neocon rag on a third party focused website…

  30. Catholic Trotskyist Says:

    I hope that the LP will be taken over by some sort of hostile takeover. I would try it myself, but I don’t think I can get enough support for the Fringe Alliance Strategy during the next three weeks. However, I plan to be at the convention so I can harangue the delegates, preaching about the truth of life and the great awakening.

    Having a purist candidate is a waste of time, and so is having a former “Major party” candidate, unless, from my perspective, it helps the Obama Revolution, or is an extremely fantastic speaker like Mike Gravel. Third parties need to have Direct Action Gandhi/King style protests rather than elections.

  31. Michael Seebeck Says:

    Time for the other half of Team Seebeck to weigh in…

    (And yes, those that know us well call us that!)

    I, too, would have loved to see a Paul-Johnson ticket anywhere. Obviously that isn’t going to happen.

    Reason’s article was shoddy at best (see my comments over there on it for more), but that’s typical of them nowadays.

    Gravel’s biggest problem IMO is his pro-government health care stance, and his national intiative idea, while at very first glance may be well-intentioned, would be a huge disaster. He would be absolutely fantastic as an advisor to the LP on the machinations of DC, assuming the LNC ever decided to actually establish a DC lobbying effort to influence public policy in a libertarian direction in that manner (as CO has done and we’re working on in CA). Gravel is also too new to the LP and hasn’t gotten his spurs yet. That means he’s not versed enough to market the LP as its standard-bearer, and that’s a problem.

    Barr (if he actually runs) has a ton of baggage to go with his experience, not to mention the question as to his “road-to-Damascus” epiphany after it was the LP that got him booted out of Congress in the first place. His name recognition with the MSM is only because of his past Congressional service. He also needs an image makeover (modern candidates don’t have mustaches and plastic glasses from the 70s—they’re clean-shaven and LASIKed). He’s a good spokesperson for the LP, but does he pass the smell test?

    BTW, the ACLU is not antilibertarian, even if they do get it wrong at times. as a member of both the LP and ACLU, I see it firsthand.

    Root is a self-promoter and need to do some more JFK-style stumping for the LP instead of it being all about him. He rolls out endorsements by people few have ever heard of like water through my sink tap, to the point where I tend to ignore them even more than I usually do. He also has his own past baggage to deal with, and his role in the Ruwart affair leaves a lot to be desired. Plus, he’s backed by Eric the Dunderhead, which means his candidacy is probably doomed anyway. But he would make a great press secretary with all of those media contacts for whomever actually gets the nod.

    Kubby has to shake the “druggie” label by ignoring the MMJ position completely.

    Ruwart has the track record, even with the recent controversy over nothing (see my analysis on it on the Huballoo thread), and she can present the message in the right marketing manner. Her drawbacks are two: height, which she can’t do anything about (the votes like tall candidates these days because they think height means stature when all it means is that they get rained on earlier), and she not as well known outside the party. However, she would be a stark contrast to Hillary if that happens (and would show the world what a REAL woman who actually has looks, personality, and brains can do!—the three things Clinton lacks!) and further diversify the field, which would appeal to voters who think that way.

    Smith is also a newbie (never heard of her in my time in CO, and I knew of most of that crowd when I was there) and she gets too angry and too strident. A good public speaking class could make her into a star, but right now she’s too raw. However, like Ruwart, she would offset Hillary.

    Phillies drew some heat from me for not thinking it out very well regarding his posting of the Ruwart quote from a poster in the first place. I also heard of him talking to someone at the CA convention where he introduced himself and asked for their support but that he couldn’t talk to them right now. “Can I have your support while I brush you off?” is not going to win people over. He also is unimpressive in one-on-one talking, and his public presence needs improvement.

    The rest of the field are not worth mentioning.

    What needs to happen between now and Memorial Day is for the LNC to focus on the convention and public issues of the day and leave the campaigns alone. Sure, the convention is undoubtedly in the BEST of hands with BetteRose Ryan and Michelle Poague (I mean that in all seriousness, they know how to do it RIGHT!), but the LNC should leave the campaigns to the candidates, except that Cory owes Ruwart a public apology for using Party resources to advance a personal agenda instead of the Party’s.

  32. Scott Frost Says:

    Does anybody know what’s up with Barry Hess? He is a long time activist and I was quite impressed when I saw him debating in the Arizona gubernatorial race, but he doesn’t even have a web site. Is he really in the race?

  33. disinter Says:

    “Reason” is a neocon rag:

    ‘Reason’-Funder To Host Cheney

  34. disinter Says:

    “During the 1980 Presidential campaign, the libertarian movement began to split into two factions, the Rothbardians and Cato Institute faction led by Ed Crane and funded by the billionaire Koch family (The “Kochtopus”). The fissure is alive and well today, as evidenced by last year’s ignorant attack on LewRockwell.com by Virginia Postrel of Reason Magazine, a magazine which receives funding from the Koch family.”


  35. Scott Frost Says:

    I have to agree with Susan Hogarth yet again. I, too, discovered the Libertarian Party when Ron Paul first ran for president. And I didn’t even know that he was a former Congressman when I saw him on TV. I just liked the ideas and was glad to know that there was a party that represented my views. (The public schools I went to way back when never mentioned the LP.)

    I think it is more important to run sopmebody who will be a good communicator of libertarian ideas than to run somebody with political experience (or money or name recognition.) After all, other than Ron Paul, what do politicians generally have experience doing? Growing government, mostly.

    We can’t be sure that a bold, purist libertarian campaign would not capture the public’s imagination more than a “safe,” wishy-washy conservative campaign would.

    It would really disappoint me if the Republican Party had a candidate (Ron Paul) who was more libertarian than the LP’s eventual nominee.

  36. G.E. Says:

    I like this Scott Frost guy.

  37. Andy Says:

    “Bill Woolsey Says:

    April 30th, 2008 at 12:04 pm
    The ‘long time Libertarian activist’ criterion is the worst.

    We should pick a member of the club?”

    I would include those who are a part of the overall libertarian movement but haven’t been members of the Libertarian Party.

  38. Yank Says:

    We should pick the woman with the best ass.

  39. Steve Newton Says:

    “We should pick the woman with the best ass.”

    That would be Barr, Root, or Gravel?

  40. Robert Capozzi Says:

    Ruwart needs to clear the air on her take on kiddie porn. If she actually believes what she has said in the past, I respect that view, but I happen to disagree. It’s a form of tortured Rothbardianism laid bare. It’s way worse in my book that any issue that Barr or Root has espoused.

  41. Scott Frost Says:

    G.E.—Thanks! :D

    Robert—Here are some links wherein Mary explains her position further.



    I hope this helps.

  42. Steve LaBianca Says:

    Of course Robert Capozzi, a johnny-come-lately (to the LP) in his own right feels right at home with LRC favorites Barr and W.A.R. Between the three of them they have a total of 5 years experience in the Libertarian Party.

    So just like W.A.R. and Barr, who jump into the LP going straight for the top, Capozzi goes straight to the national LP, & platform committee, and yet nobody has ever heard a peep out of him in the LPVa, or any of the Northern Virginia county organizations. Ron Paul led a grassroots movement . . . Capozzi believes in top down I guess . . . good strategy Bob. What other gems do you have for us?

    Three’s company . . . too!

    “It’s way worse in my book that any issue that Barr or Root has espoused.”

    Barr’s vote for the Patriot Act, DOMA, desire for intervention in South America,etc . . . W.A.R. support for Lieberman, McCain, war on terror, middle east interventionism, etc . . . these are all better than Ruwart, who believes that the lack of efficacy of laws should not trumps people, families, and individuals deciding for themselves. Very libertarian, Bob.

  43. Steve LaBianca Says:

    I will say, though I am not sure, but Capozzi might have had a brief involvement with the LP in the early 80’s, so that might make it maybe 6 years between the three of them.

  44. Steve LaBianca Says:

    I will ALSO say that I give credit to Barr for working hard to help build the LP.

    He should wait to run for president though, IMO.

    W.A.R. on the other hand should first apologize to the LP membership for trying to pull the wool over their eyes, pretending to be a libertarian. He ought to then drop out of the contest, and study libertarianism, free market economics, libertarian theory, and fully understand Harry Browne’s “Why Government Doesn’t Work”, along with other fine works of Browne and others. He should get involved in his local and state party; run a campaign for something local.

    Nestled in there, he ought to apologize to Mary Ruwart. He and his campaign (especially that bonehead Mark Schreiber) ought to study her writings, instead of simply trying to draw tortured conclusions.

    These guys want to help the LP? First become a libertarian . . . that would be a good start!

  45. David F. Nolan Says:

    Scott Frost asked “Does anybody know what’s up with Barry Hess? He is a long time activist and I was quite impressed when I saw him debating in the Arizona gubernatorial race, but he doesn’t even have a web site. Is he really in the race?”

    I spoke with Barry yesterday, and he has officially dropped out because he wants a speaking slot at the national convention, and the convention organizers have stated that candidates cannot be speakers, as it would give those who got speaking slots an unfair advantage. Reasonable enough.

    I suggested that Barry would make an excellent keynote speaker, since Barr is now ineligible. However, it seems that “someone” (nobody will say who, but it’s not Bill Redpath, the National Chair) has told Bette Rose Ryan that Richard Viguerie (a non-libertarian) is the new designated keynoter. She has been given no choice in the matter.

    Now Mr. Viguerie is undoubtedly worth listening to. He is, after all, the world’s leading expert on direct mail fundraising. But shouldn’t the keynote speaker at the Libertarian Party be a LIBERTARIAN? And who was given the authority to dictate that a NON-LIBERTARIAN be the keynoter?

    Kinda strange, no? If anyone else thinks this is all very fishy, I invite them to telephone Mr. Redpath and ask him who’s in charge of the LP these days, since apparently it isn’t him. His phone number is 703-864-2312. While you’re on the line, you might make the point that the keynote speaker at the national convention should be an actual member of the Libertarian Party—preferably someone like Barry Hess, who has actually run for office as a Libertarian.

    Just a thought.

  46. Susan Hogarth Says:

    Now Mr. Viguerie is undoubtedly worth listening to. He is, after all, the world’s leading expert on direct mail fundraising. But shouldn’t the keynote speaker at the Libertarian Party be a LIBERTARIAN?

    I agree, and found this info to be extremely distressing. The idea of a keynote is that it sets the tone for the convention.


    “At political or industrial conventions and expositions and at academic conferences, the keynote address or keynote speech is delivered to set the underlying tone and summarize the core message or most important revelation of the event.”

    If the ‘tone’ of our convention is Viguerie, it will be conservativism rather than libertarianism:

    His website:


    If he wants to give a fundraising seminar, great. But NOT a keynote speech. Besides the debate and post-nom candidate speech, the Keynote is the address most likely to be picked up and quoted by the press. Ouch.

    I echo David Nolan’s call to LPers to call Bill Redpath - and your LNC rep - and BEG them to have a Libertarian - not a Republican Conservative - set the tone at the Libertarian Party Convention.

  47. Scott Frost Says:

    David Nolan—Thanks for the update on Barry Hess!

    I agree that he would be a great keynote speaker. Somehow I just don’t see the Republicans allowing one of our members to be their keynote speaker. Even Ron Paul is struggling to get a speaking spot at the Republican convention. This is an odd situation. I hope we can remedy it while there’s still time.

    I also hope that C-SPAN covers the convention at greater length than it did four years ago. If I remember correctly, they only covered the nomination and largely ignored the floor business and speeches. Maybe it wouldn’t hurt for us to politely contact C-SPAN, too.

    I’m starting to become confused as to what is going on at the national level, between the mysterious decision to make Mr. Viguerie the keynote speaker and the LP press release calling on an unconstitutional federal government agency to protect our children. This is all very odd.

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