New Hampshire, with a second Libertarian Party representative and cannabis decriminalization. This is the thirty-eighth episode of The LAVA Spurt, New Hampshire It's Like This Too. This episode is brought to you by Praxis, where you can get a full-time job in nine months making $50,000 a year with no college degree.

As you guys know, I moved to New Hampshire as part of the Free State Project a more than a year and a half ago. I get the question often from libertarians around the country, “If it's the Free State Project, why isn't is a libertarian utopia yet?” These libertarians missed the operative world, Project. It is exactly that, a project, an experiment if you will, to see if thousands of active, hard-core libertarians in a given geographic area can bring about Liberty in Our Lifetimes. I'm confident that it can, which is why I move here, and it is weeks like this that remind me that we really are helping to make a difference, and with only 10% of the people moved so far, and, including in-state friends, the Free State Project is nearly at 25% of its goal of 20,000 libertarians in the state. 

This week alone, we had one big win that probably wouldn't have happened without Free State Project participants and native libertarians, along with others, working together to make it happen. The New Hampshire State Senate passed marijuana decriminalization with a vote of 17 to 6. This is highly unusual because the house has sent cannabis decriminalization bills to the senate eight times in the last 10 years, always to be shot down in the senate. The bill the senate passed is slightly different than the original house bill, so it has to go back to the house to be reconciled, then on to the governor's desk. The house will almost certainly pass the reconciliation since they voted 318 to 36 to send the original bill on to the senate. And, the Republican governor has made it clear that he will sign the measure into law, calling ti “common sense marijuana reform.”

Another bit of good news is that the Libertarian Party of New Hampshire now has its second sitting state house representative. Joseph Stallcop was elected in November as a Democrat and he made the switch to the Libertarian Party this past Tuesday. This follows Caleb Dyer making the move to the Libertarian Party of New Hampshire from the Republican party back in February. This makes New Hampshire the state with more sitting state reps than the other 49 states combined. And, as Arvin Vorha, the Vice Chair of the national party, said, this is perhaps the youngest political caucus is the world, since both representatives are 21 years old.

 

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New Hampshire, with a second Libertarian Party representative and cannabis decriminalization. Thank you for joining me on the thirty-eighth episode of The LAVA Spurt, New Hampshire, It's Like This Too. This episode is brought to you by Praxis, where you can get a full-time job in nine months making $50,000 a year with no college degree.

As you guys know, I moved to New Hampshire as part of the Free State Project a more than a year and a half ago. I get the question often from libertarians around the country, "If it's the Free State Project, why isn't is a libertarian utopia yet?" These libertarians missed the operative world, Project. It is exactly that, a project, an experiment if you will, to see if thousands of active, hard-core libertarians in a given geographic area can bring about Liberty in Our Lifetimes. I'm confident that it can, which is why I move here, and it is weeks like this that remind me that we really are helping to make a difference, and with only 10% of the people moved so far, and, including in-state friends, the Free State Project is nearly at 25% of its goal of 20,000 libertarians in the state.

This week alone, we had one big win that probably wouldn't have happened without Free State Project participants and native libertarians, along with others, working together to make it happen. The New Hampshire State Senate passed marijuana decriminalization with a vote of 17 to 6. This is highly unusual because the house has sent cannabis decriminalization bills to the senate eight times in the last 10 years, always to be shot down in the senate. The bill the senate passed is slightly different than the original house bill, so it has to go back to the house to be reconciled, then on to the governor's desk. The house will almost certainly pass the reconciliation since they voted 318 to 36 to send the original bill on to the senate. And, the Republican governor has made it clear that he will sign the measure into law, calling ti "common sense marijuana reform."

When the bill becomes law, possession of three-quarters of an ounce or less will be treated as a violation subject to fines, $100 for the first or second offense, or up to $300 for any subsequent offense within a three-year period. The bill allows for three violations in a three-year period before someone faces criminal penalties for a Class B misdemeanor. The bill specifically forbids police officers from arresting anyone for a marijuana possession violation. And it requires that all money collected from fines would be deposited in the state’s fund to pay for services to combat alcohol and substance abuse.

Once the governor signs the bill, it will go into effect after 60 days. No word on if the governor will be giving pardons to everyone who is currently in prison for a crime that will now be legal, but one can hope. Either way, this is a huge win that will impact the lives of thousands in the state who will now not be saddled with a criminal conviction for simple possession.

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Another bit of good news is that the Libertarian Party of New Hampshire now has its second sitting state house representative. Joseph Stallcop was elected in November as a Democrat and he made the switch to the Libertarian Party this past Tuesday. This follows Caleb Dyer making the move to the Libertarian Party of New Hampshire from the Republican party back in February. This makes New Hampshire the state with more sitting state reps than the other 49 states combined. And, as Arvin Vorha, the Vice Chair of the naitonal party, said, this is perhaps the youngest political caucus is the world, since both representatives are 21 years old.

Full disclosure, I'm the current vice-chairman of the Libertarian Party of New Hampshire.

The fact that the LPNH has now pulled representatives from the left and the right just goes to show that libertarians are not pot-loving Republicans.

Stallcop said:

“My time in Concord reinforced [my view of] the ineptitude that can exist by those in charge. I originally joined the Democratic Party in hopes of making a difference through critical thinking and my classical liberal viewpoint, yet with the lack of unbiased data in caucuses as well as backlash on votes I’ve independently made, it seems there is no longer a place for me here. With a high regard for individuals personally working in their communities to implement positive change, I hereby transfer to the Libertarian Party.”

Stallcop says the criticism he received on some of his votes that weren’t along party lines — including on whether to change the state’s marriage age and whether to require a permit to carry a concealed firearm — came from within the Democratic Party and not his constituents. That was frustrating, he said.

He voted in favor of indefinitely postponing legislation to change the minimum age someone can get married in New Hampshire from 13 for girls and 14 for boys to 18 years old for both sexes, and for allowing people to carry concealed firearms without a permit.

One of the most interesting things about New Hampshire is its libertarian streak. They truly take the state motto, live free or die, to heart. There are dozens of libertarians in both the Republican and Democrat party currently sitting in the house, and more than two dozen Free State Project participants have been elected to that house as Rs and Ds. That in itself sets the state in a place apart from all other states, btu now, with two sitting Libertarian state reps, it is just further proof. If you need even more proof that New Hampshire is where it's at, make sure to check out the free video on YouTube, 101 Reasons: Why Liberty Live in New Hampshire.

Until next time... keep striking the root!

 

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