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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

May 25, 2020
Contact: Steven Nekhaila,
Chairman, Libertarian Party of Florida
chair@lpf.org

KEY WEST, Fla. – The Libertarian Party of Florida congratulates Libertarian presidential running team Jo Jorgensen and Spike Cohen in the first-ever national political convention conducted solely online.

More than a thousand Libertarian Party delegates attended the two-day Convention this past weekend. The gathering ended Sunday but will be reconvened in in-person in Orlando for business meetings this July. Party veteran Jo Jorgensen was nominated as the Libertarian presidential nominee following four rounds of elimination voting. Jeremy “Spike” Cohen was chosen as her running mate after three rounds.

Steven Nekhaila

“This was a historic event that will go down in history as the combination of forward thinking and ingenuity to elect a Presidential and Vice-Presidential nominee in the age of COVID-19,” said LPF Chair Steven Nekhaila. “I am very proud of our Florida delegation and team for doing our part. I am also pleased with the support of the Libertarian National Committee staff for helping to make this a reality. We are excited to support our nominee’s and bring a third real option to constituents in all 50 States including Florida this November!”

A total of 54 Florida delegates and 16 alternates participated in the voting. Nationwide, 1,026 delegates voted to elect Jorgensen, a senior lecturer in psychology at Clemson University. Jorgensen, 63, was Harry Browne’s running mate in 1996. Florida delegates favored Georgia neighbor John Monds in early rounds, they supported party stalwart Vermin Supreme in the final round.

Floridians favored Cohen throughout the three vice-president ballots. Cohen, 37, was initially slated with presidential candidate Vermin Supreme. Supreme fell off the rounds and Cohen went on to the vice-presidential win.

For the most part, the two-day online event went smoothly. Some technical issues and confusion about participation persisted, but failed to prevent the thousands of votes.

“I think overall things went well for a first-time event,” said delegate Chris Jones, vice chair of the LPF Alachua County affiliate. “I think the Florida delegation did a phenomenal job using a separate app for communication and coordination. The Zoom interface definitely did leave much of the delegation somewhat out of the process.”

– By J. Mark Barfield, Staff Writer

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

April 3, 2020

Contact: Steven Nekhaila,

Chairman, Libertarian Party of Florida

chair@lpf.org

305.393.6412

Downtown Palatka

LPF Responds to Gov. DeSantis’ Safer at Home Order

 

KEY WEST, Fla. – If you live in Florida, you are now in state-mandated lock-down. Gov. Ron DeSantis’ Executive Order Numbers 20-91 and 20-92 although signed on April 1, were certainly no jokes. As of midnight, free movement and free commerce is severely restricted for the entire state. While he hasn’t called out the National Guard for every street corner, DeSantis referenced passages from the Florida Constitution and Statutes granting him the authority to do so.[i]

The Libertarian Party of Florida condemns this action. Evidence shows enforced lockdowns do not curb the transmission of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes the COVID-19 illness. Intelligent responses to medical issues do work without shutting down society as DeSantis has done.

Evidence shows rational steps promoted by government can work without creating the record-high unemployment we have now. You’ve already heard those rational steps many times: Keep your distance from others, wear gloves and maybe a mask, wash your hands and if you’re sick, stay home. What we’re seeing is those rational steps are contributing to emerging successes in South Korea and Japan, along with Finland. Certainly, there are cultural and mindset differences, but those countries have largely approached this manufactured “crisis” in a voluntary, supportive way, not authoritarian.[ii]

South Korea offers a good example.[iii] Within the first week after the case of COVID-19 was verified, government officials met with manufacturers to urge them to scale up manufacture of test kits. Within days, government employees were testing on a greater scale than the United States has performed to date. Numerous testing sites were quickly set up to avoid choking hospitals. Results were available within hours, not days.

People who needed it, are getting medical care before it becomes life-threatening. Once a new case is identified, the person is immediately placed under direct medical care. Everyone in contact with those ill people are identified and tested, and re-tested in a few days. In some cases, medical workers urged quarantine for those who were in immediate contact. Mortality rates stayed low.

In addition to those direct measures, the South Korean government played a role in keeping citizens informed and educated. They recommended – not mandated – facemask wearing and social distancing. A responsible population agreed and complied.

South Korea did not resort to shutting down their society to the degree DeSantis has mandated for Floridians. Korean stores, restaurants and schools were kept open. That country addressed the issue as medical, not economic.

As peace-loving and educated folks, Libertarians everywhere in the world believe in informed free choice and responsible free will. Virtually all Libertarians do “the right thing” in this outbreak in that they approach it as a medical safety issue. We wash our hands, maybe wear gloves and masks to protect ourselves, our families and our friends, along with our business associates and customers. And yes, we want to make those choices ourselves without draconian government intrusion.

The Libertarian Party of Florida calls on Gov. DeSantis to rescind 20-91 and 20-92 and let Florida function again. DeSantis had the opportunity to lead the nation in responsible steps to stop a medical issue without stopping Florida. He chose the latter.

 

– By J. Mark Barfield, Staff Writer

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[i] Essential Services and Activities During COVID-19 Emergency

[ii] Our World in Data: Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) – Statistics and Research

[iii] New York Times: How South Korea Flattened the Curve

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Feb. 27, 2020

Contact: Steven Nekhaila,
Chairman, Libertarian Party of Florida
|chair@lpf.org

 

Orlando – Brisk winds were no match for the flames of freedom at the Libertarian Party of Florida’s Annual Convention and Business Meeting last weekend.

Nearly 100 LPF Members, including 74 voting delegates attended the two-day event featuring debates among nine LP candidates for President and Libertarian National Committee Chair, along with breakout sessions and LPF Officer Elections. Fifty-four LPF Delegates were chosen to represent Florida at the LP Presidential Nominating Convention in Austin this May.

“I was pleased with the energy and enthusiasm from members, what struck me this particular convention was the lack of intra-party schisms,” said party chairman Steven Nekhaila. “We united as the Underdogs and clearly are set out to shake up the political landscape. Our Party continues to grow more professional from the bottom to the top, and our mission is clear: become the centrifugal force of Liberty in Florida by effecting policy, getting Libertarians elected, and spreading the philosophy. The Libertarian Party’s core mission is to reduce the size, influence, and expenditures of all levels of government. Our ability to do so has never been better.”

The two-day event kicked off Friday night with the biting humour of C. Michael Pickens, Rob Wentz and Seminole County’s own Shaun Kunz.

But with no doubt, the highlight of the weekend was Saturday night’s LP Presidential Debate. A packed house had the opportunity to gain insight into nine of our LP presidential candidate’s stances. Coupled with light moments, the live stream has been viewed by more than 4,200 people.

“Winning the “toy soldier” ballot afterwards was Jacob Hornberger of Texas collecting more than 25% of the vote. A close second was John Monds of Georgia.

Hornberger, a lawyer from Texas, is founder and president of The Future of Freedom Foundation, a non-profit libertarian educational foundation. An author or co-editor and contributor of 17 books, his newest book is “My Passion for Liberty.”

Sunday’s morning’s debate among three candidates for LNC Chair: Mike Shipley, Joe Bishop-Henchman, and Joshua Smith. Smith, of California, was the attendees favorite.

The weekend was filled popular breakout sessions and guest speakers, including Saturday’s Liberty in Action presentation by Newberry Mayor Jordan Marlowe, Altamonte Springs Commissioner Jim Turney and Seminole County Commission candidate Andre Klass. Each spoke to the importance of Libertarian messaging whether serving in office or on the campaign trail.

“Libertarian candidates can have a message that resonates with voters so our challenge is to reach the voters with our message,” said Turney. “Canvassing precincts and meeting voters face-to-face is our path to success.”

Wes Benedict, former executive director of the Libertarian National Committee, presented a motivational if not challenging history of LP candidates elected over the years. It demonstrated Libertarians in non-party races get elected. The notes were in line with Nekhaila’s Vision 2020 which seeks to retain at least 10 elected LPF Members in office.

“Our work is cut out for us this year,” said Nekhaila,  “we have a lot on our plate to take advantage of the opportunities the Republicans and Democrats keep giving us, with further encroachments on our freedom and more and more disenfranchised voters looking for a political home and a third, principled option, the Libertarians stand proud. We are looking for volunteers to step up and help take us to the gold medal. We are seeking principled candidates to run in winnable elections to move forward Libertarian policy. And we are in need of enthusiastic Party members who can help form or grow a local affiliate to be the local beacon of Liberty in their counties. Please reach out to us if all of this appealing. If you do not have time to participate, your donations allow us to do all of the above and more, a monthly donation is the wind that keeps our sails consistently moving forward. As the only growing political party in the United States, we are the best investment you can make politically.”

Saturday and Sunday, Delegates elected their LPF team of officers for 2020. They are:

Chair: Steven Nekhaila (Current)

Vice-Chair: J Mark Barfield

Secretary: Ed Appler

Treasurer: John Olivadoti

Director At-Large 1: Suzanne Gilmore (Current)

Director At-Large 2: Davie Parrish

Director At-Large 3: Nivine Zakhari

Region 1: Spenser Garber

Region 4: Jordan Bosserman, Alternate 1: Joe Moraca

Region 5: Michael Cassidy, alt. David Salisbury

Region 7: Tegan Joseph, Alternate 1: Jonathan Loesche, Alternate : Jon-Luc Tesky

Region 8: Bryan Zemina, Alternate 1: Jon-Luc Tesky

Region 9: Donna Olivadoti, Alternate 1: Warren Clark

Region 11: John Thompson

Region 13: Lee Korotzer, Alternate 1: Omar Recuero, Alternate 2: Marc Tancer

Region 14: Josh Curtis, Alternate 1: Dennis Misigoy, Alternate 2: Mike Kane

Rules Committee: Tony Sellers (Chair), Philippe Cadorette and Chris Rose

 

– By J. Mark Barfield, Staff Writer

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CONTACT INFORMATION:

Addison Patrick,
Public Relations Director
McCary for Florida Senate, 5
th District
PublicRelations@mccary4fl5th.com
(904) 385-9455


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Matt McCary

Orange Park, FL – Libertarian Matt McCary proudly announced his candidacy for the 2020 election for Florida’s State Senate, 5th District today.

“I will work directly with all members in the statehouse to ensure the voice of the people are heard and their views are respected and properly represented,” says McCary, 39, of Orange Park.

McCary says when elected, he will focus on issues such as gun rights, healthcare, reduction of business regulation and taxation, Florida military veterans, and equality.

“It is my full intent to bring the voice and the will of the people I represent to the statehouse. I am committed to reducing taxes, regulation and other government interference while working hard to bring back personal liberties and equal treatment for all our citizens.”

McCary is an Information Technology Project Manager for Northrop Grumman in St. Augustine, FL and previously served honorably in the United States Air Force. McCary is married to David, his partner of 18 years. They have two children, Marrissa and DJ, who are both active duty military service members. McCary is serving his second term on the Orange Park Country Club Owners Association Board of Directors.

McCary’s Campaign Kick-Off Party is Friday, June 7, 2019 at his residence in Orange Park. The General Admission event runs from 7 pm-10 pm, with VIP entry at 6 pm. More information, registration, and tickets are available on the website.

To learn more about Matt, visit www.mccary4fl5th.com or search #MCCARY4FL5TH for Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Snapchat.

###

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

May 12, 2018

Contact: Steven Nekhaila,
Chairman, Libertarian Party of Florida
chair@lpf.org

 

TAMPA – Delegates and guests alike declare last weekend’s 2019 Libertarian Party of Florida Annual Convention a huge success.

“It was one of the most professional state Libertarian conventions I’ve attended,” said C. Michael Pickens, coach, lecturer and host of Friday Night’s Banquet Roast. “The Libertarian Party of Florida is making great strides to advance liberty and it’s apparent by the quality of their last convention and the sheer number of elected Libertarians in the state.”

LP National Committee Vice Chair Alex Merced agreed. “The Florida State Convention has been one of the most ambitious and smoothly run political events of any kind I’ve been to in years and a true sign of a mature organization primed to make impact for years to come.”

Incoming LPF Chair Steven Nekhaila of Key West said the Convention attendees made the success.

“What really tied it all together was the attendance of our Florida Libertarian family,” Nekhaila said. “We had stellar attendance with many new faces showing up for their first convention.”

Steven Nekhaila

An estimated 140 attendees attended one of the dozen events. Events included a debate between announced LP presidential candidates Adam Kokesh, Arvin Vohra and Souraya Faas. Lectures and panel discussions featured Tom Woods, Jeff Deist, Walter Block, Joshua Smith, Caryn Ann Harlos and Nekhaila.

Harlos, LP National Committee Secretary, said she was pleased to see the advancements Florida has made.

“I spent over four decades in Florida before transplanting to Colorado, and as such, being invited to speak at the LPF convention was a special honour to me,” she said. “The convention was professionally done and all of the members friendly. There is a tremendous libertarian fire in their bellies, and I wish I had discovered libertarianism while I still lived in Florida so that I could have worked daily with such wonderful and diverse people.”

Smith, an LNC At-Large Member, agreed – Florida got it right.

“The 2019 LPF state convention was the most professional and well put together state convention I have ever been to, and I traveled to 26 states and 17 state conventions last year,” Smith said. “Everything from the breakout sessions to the meals, and the lighting was superb. I can’t wait to see what they pull off in 2020, and I hope all other states will watch the footage and strive for the same.”

OFFICERS ELECTED

Nearly a completely new Executive Committee was elected Saturday morning. They are:

  • Chairman: Steven Nekhaila
  •  Vice Chairman: Spenser Garber
  •  Secretary: Brandi Hicks (Returning)
  •  Treasurer: David Salisbury
  •  Director At-Large 1: Suzanne Gilmore
  •  Director At-Large 2: Larry Gillis
  •  Director At-Large 3: J Mark Barfield
  •  Regional Representative 1: Julia Hall
  •  Regional Representative 2: Cody Moser
  •  Regional Representative 3: Jonathan McCue
  •  Regional Representative 4: Davie Parrish
  •  Regional Representative 5: Addison Patrick
  •  Regional Representative 6: Ashley McCoy
  •  Regional Representative 7: Tegan Joseph
  •  Regional Representative 8: Bryan Zemina
  •  Regional Representative 9: John Olivadoti
  •  Regional Representative 10: Stephen Aiken
  •  Regional Representative 11: Shawn Elliott (Returning)
  •  Regional Representative 12: David DeForest
  •  Regional Representative 13: Lee Korotzer
  •  Regional Representative 14: Josh Curtis

 

Returning Region 11 Representative Shawn Elliott said he’s looking forward to a great year. excited to work with the new team.

“I’m excited to be a part of the new EC,” said Elliott. “Steven has done a great job of fixing our treasurer issues and Spencer is very focused and committed to continuing to move the party in the right direction. Very exciting times for Libertarians in Florida.”

 

– By J. Mark Barfield, Staff Writer

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Dear all,

Last week, the Libertarian Party of Florida held its 2019 annual business meeting in Tampa. By far, it was the most successful and

professional business meeting I’ve attended traveling the country as the Region 2 Representative of the Libertarian National Committee since becoming an LPF member in 2014. My LNC colleagues agree. They told me it was the most professional and well-done convention they’ve ever attended. With big names like Tom Woods, Jeff Deist, and Walter Block, success was a sure-thing smash hit.

Steven Nekhaila

What really tied it all together was the attendance of our Florida Libertarian family. We had stellar attendance with many new faces showing up for their first convention. We’re now full of that energy and enthusiasm for the LPF future. As the old adage goes, our work has just begun!

I want to first express my gratitude to our volunteers who made that convention a success. Without the labors of many behind the scenes, our convention would not have flowed as smoothly as it did. Next, I want to congratulate our newly elected party Officials and Executive Committee members. These folks stepped up and are ready to bring liberty forward in Florida! It is an honor to be selected as the most accountable person in the Party. I am looking forward to serving and working with each of you.

We have a challenging and fulfilling road ahead of us as we progress in 2019. We will need to optimize the Party’s resources, including its people, planning, and infrastructure, to set the stage for both the 2020 elections and beyond. With the institutionalization of the Party’s knowledge, candidate support and recruitment, and affiliate support on the front burners, we enter the next Presidential year as a force to be reckoned with.

As the old two Party’s continue to decline, the Libertarian Party continues to be the ONLY growing political party. That’s right, the Republicans, Democrats, Greens, and Constitutionalists are all losing registered voters. We are the only one’s growing and the only ones standing up for liberty in the United States. The Libertarian Party is becoming the centrifugal force of liberty in Florida.

As the days move on, remember the passion in your belly that drove you at convention. Let’s spread that fire across the State and rage into 2020 victorious!

Steven Nekhaila,
Chairman, Libertarian Party of Florida

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 9, 2019
Contact: Chris Rose II
Director At-Large 2, Libertarian Party of Florida
atlarge2@lpf.org

 

OCALA, Fla – Dennis Fields, Region 4 Representative for Florida Carry, became the latest Republican to switch his voter registration over to Libertarian Party of Florida Saturday.

Dennis Fields (L,) Chris Rose II (R)

Fields, an activist and an avid defender of the right to bear arms, said his party had already left him. “Republicans are now Democrats. I’m tired of the GOP screwing me without lube,” he said.

Fields’ Region 4 includes Baker, Clay, Duval, Flagler, Putnam, Nassau, and St. Johns Counties.

Fields, along with LPF Director At-Large 2 Chris Rose II and other LPF members attended an open-carry event here this weekend. A hot topic of the event was the 2018 Republican-dominated Florida Legislature’s passing of Senate Bill 7026, which created “red flag” laws and raised the minimum age to purchase any firearm to 21.

“Dennis and I combined on all three of the protest events in Tallahassee last year,” said Rose. “The Libertarian Party of Florida was the only political Party in the State to actively oppose the passing of SB7026, from its inception in Committee, to its final passing on the Senate floor. I am overjoyed to now have Mr. Fields as a member of the LPF, and I expect we will be working a lot more together.”

— xxx —

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

March 26, 2019

Contact: Marcos Miralles,
Chairman, Libertarian Party of Florida
chair@lpf.org

Contact: Souraya Faas
sourayafaas@gmail.com

 

Souraya Faas

MIAMI – Marcos Miralles, chairman of the Libertarian Party of Florida, announced today the newest convert to the LPF, Souraya Faas, Miami-Dade County Republican Executive Committee Committeewoman for Dist. 32.

“As a Libertarian, I want to highlight the party and show people that they are Libertarians,” Faas said today. “I registered Republican since I was 18 because I thought I had to choose between one of the two major parties. But I’ve always considered myself a libertarian because I was conservative about some things, and moderate about others. I was in the Republican Liberty Caucus.”

Increasingly, politicians are choosing Libertarian to run for office. Faas joins Coconut Grove Village Councilwoman Courtney Omega as the latest

Souraya Faas with Marcos Miralles

South Florida politician to switch from Republican to Libertarian Party during the past year. In 2012, Gov. Gary Johnson left the Republican Party to run for president as a Libertarian.

Faas, 37, has been active in politics most of her life. In 2016, she ran for president as a write-in Independent in 2016, but lost her lawsuit to get on the ballot in Texas. At the time, she was the youngest person and the first person of Arab descent to run for the office. Last year, she made a bid for U.S. Congress, but lost to incumbent Rep. Carlos Curbelo in the Republican Primary.

During the 2018 campaign, Faas denounced the U.S. intervention in the Syrian War and praised a House Democrat who opposed U.S. military involvement.

“Time and time again we see history repeating itself where, in the name of freedom and peace, wars have been provoked and fought for special interests,” she wrote in a RT op ed piece last year.[1]

“The Libertarian Party is a place where diversity is valued and a place where everyone works together to enhance our community’s quality of life,” Miralles said.

Faas says she will continue to seek public office. “I feel like people have lost the perception of what it’s like to be a politician,” Faas said to the Miami Herald last year. [2]

“Politicians are no longer what they used to be: for the people,” she said today. “They are more worried about getting re-elected and listening to special interests than they are about listening to the people.”

 

– By J. Mark Barfield, Staff Writer

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[1] Divide & conquer: America’s blueprint for ‘world peace’ simply a roadmap to disaster

[2] Miami congressional candidate says chemical attacks in Syria were staged