Doug Mataconis is hopeful:
Johnson doesn’t come with some of the baggage that Ron Paul did in 2008. There are no political polemics with controversial statements, or associations with people who’ve gone on to become advocates of odd conspiracy theories, in Johnson’s past. For another, the Republican Party of 2012 will clearly be far more receptive to the libertarian-ish positions that Johnson espouses than it was in 2008. Despite his fundraising successes and the fact that he was attracting enthusiastic support on college campuses, it was easy for the rest of the GOP to ignore Ron Paul in 2008 and dismiss him in the manner that pundits like Sean Hannity did. Even in a crowded field of candidates, it won’t be so easy to dismiss Gary Johnson.
Alex Massie is realistic:
Gary Johnson's probably alienated 90% of the Republican party before he's even announced his candidacy. But so what? When he was Governor of New Mexico he vetoed no fewer than 750 bills. That's a kind of discipine Washington could benefit from too.
He has a record, he has convictions, he has a refreshing openess and a willingness to tell it as he sees it. Obviously he doesn't stand a chance.
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