Denver Post columnist David Harsanyi, a self-described conservative, issued some words of advice at a luncheon during the Libertarian National Convention in Denver today explaining to party members how to interact with members of the press.
Harsanyi said he was disappointed to see Libertarians mocked by the media by taking the "most craziest idea they can find and run with it."
The columnist, who said he had approximately 10 years of experience in the media industry, then proceeded to tell a ballroom full of Libertarian Party supporters how to converse with reporters.
Freedom Isn’t Enough
According to Harsanyi, the fact that Libertarians value personal freedom more than other individuals isn’t enough to woo reporters. Instead, he suggested bringing up popular issues like the encroaching "nanny state," a topic he has incidentally written a book about.
"Everyone hates government," said Harsanyi, which is why Libertarians should bring up specific examples of failed bureaucracy when they talk to the press.
It’s not just Democrats and Republicans who can use scare tactics, according to Harsanyi. "You can use fear too," he said, citing instances like forced education about global warming in public schools. "Losing our freedom, that’s a scary thing."
Avoid Questions About Polygamy
While reporters will want to get a Libertarian take on the recent polygamist Mormon sect in Texas and ask if it’s alright for a 14-year-old girl to be married to a middle-aged man, Harsanyi recommended avoiding the issue. Even though a Libertarian mindset may approve of the scenario as a private matter not be interfered with by the government (as long as no one was hurt or coerced).
"You can hold off on that and just try and pick a topic that is little more powerful," Harsanyi said.