Libertarians express views of government

By Chris Nelson

As NIU students save their pennies to cover tuition and fee increases, many are left questioning the agenda of the politicians in control.

The Libertarian Party of Illinois (LPI), which held its annual convention in Palatine this past weekend, is sympathetic to the situation NIU students face. Put simply, libertarians feel that national governmental systems have surpassed their original designs as caretakers of the Constitution and moved on to become parents to citizens. Libertarians are fighting to reverse this trend.

According to Pat Franke of the LPI, her group’s ideology is deeply rooted in the original ideas outlined in the Constitution.

“We believe strongly in personal rights and freedoms,” Franke said.

She said the role government ought to maintain is that of protector of personal rights created by the Constitution. Franke said she feels strongly that government has moved well beyond the position of caretaker, in effect superseding its intended use.

“Government is trying to take care of us,” Franke asserted. “When this is done, government is coming dangerously close to controlling the governed.”

Franke and other libertarians have formed several organizations around the country to act as political watchdogs. The fact the libertarians are so critical of the status quo of government has not endeared them to local politicians.

Franke’s own organization is currently fighting the city of Arlington Heights over its use of eminent domain to claim the property of one of its citizens. The city felt the land could be better developed as a site for a high rise commercial building, which would increase the area’s tax base.

Franke and her fellow libertarians said they feel the claiming of the land is an act far less benevolent than the city claims.

“In effect, it is stealing, and we are fighting it,” Franke said.

Tamara Clark, a declared libertarian who was defeated last November in her bid for a senate seat in Nevada, related her own experiences to the crowd at the convention.

Clark cited several instances of voting fraud, ultimately likening her situation to that of past Chicago elections that were replete with dishonest behavior affecting election outcomes.

“We have spent over $65,000 investigating electoral inconsistencies since election day,” Clark said. “We have come up with conclusive evidence that over 5,000 fraudulent votes were cast. Dead people, house pets and prison inmates supposedly visited polling places to cast their votes.”

Clark took her evidence to the Nevada legislature to request another, more closely monitored run-off election. After a period of political gaming, nine members of the Nevada Election Commission were indicted.

Clark said that libertarians are gaining a following as Americans look for change.

“We represent all minority parties,” Clark said. “The government has lost focus on its responsibilities. We feel that the private sector ought to control its own destiny. The government should only serve to nurture such personal


Anyone wishing to find out more about the libertarian cause is encouraged to call the LPI at 1(800) 735-1776.