For the fourth consecutive election cycle, the Libertarian Party of Arkansas ran a slate of candidates in the state’s general election. Our candidates ran ambitious campaigns and succeeded in fulfilling two important objectives: They gave the voters of Arkansas a different choice on their ballots, and in so doing interjected a libertarian voice into the political process.
In electoral terms, our candidates achieved a number of notable accomplishments:
• Mark West received the second-highest vote total of any Libertarian gubernatorial candidate in 2018 (2.9%).
• Ashley Ewald received the highest percentage for the office of State Treasurer in National LP history (29.1%),
• David Dinwiddie received the highest percentage for the office of State Auditor in National LP history (27.6%).
• Bobbi Hicks set a new LPAR record for the highest percentage in a legislative race (37.6%).
• Trina Wilson set a new LPAR record for the highest percentage in a JP race (32.5%).
• Mark G Phillips set a new LPAR record for the highest percentage for constable — or any contested race for that matter (44.3%).
• Casey D. Copeland received the highest percentage for any LPAR candidate in a three-way race setting a new record for that category (9.7%).
• In all races with a Libertarian on the ballot, Libertarians received a total of 714,593 votes, which was up from the previous high of 388,760 in 2014. Libertarian votes represented 9.7% of all votes in those races – that’s up from 7.6% in 2016.
The vote totals and percentages of all of our candidates are reported here: 2018 Results
The election was not without disappointments, of course. Libertarians had no electoral victories. And while Mark West’s vote percentage of 2.90% was the closest we’ve ever come to achieving full political party status in Arkansas, it was heartbreakingly shy of the 3.0% legal threshold.
So in order to run candidates on the ballot again in 2020, the Libertarian Party of Arkansas will once again be required to jump through the hoops of becoming a “New Political Party” … again. From this point forward, the petition campaign for ballot access in 2020 will be the primary goal of the Party.