Libertarian presidential nominee Gary Johnson, a former governor of New Mexico, bought a full-page advertisement in the Sept. 14 edition of The New York Times calling for his inclusion in debates ahead of the 2016 general election in November.
“We will appear in November on the ballots of all 50 states and the District of Columbia,” the ad, more of an open letter, begins, referring to Johnson and his running mate, former Massachusetts governor Bill Weld. “We each served as Republican governors of overwhelmingly Democratic states and were re-elected to second terms by the voters in those states.”
The letter then proceeds to cite several polls which suppose a broader-than-expected Libertarian popularity in states across the country. “A survey of more than 70,000 voters just published by The Washington Post showed support for our ticket at double digits in 42 states, at more than 15% in 15 states, and 19% or more in four states,” the ad reads.
The ad also notes a poll conducted by Quinnipiac University and published August 25, which found that 62% of US voters think Johnson should be included in televised debates alongside Republican nominee Donald Trump and Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.
“The conditions of the presidential election of 2016 are extraordinary and without precedent,” the ad concludes. “We have done the work required to appear on the ballot in all 50 states and because we are polling in double digits in the majority of those states, we respectfully propose the following: Put a third podium on stage for the debate scheduled on September 26. Allow us to make our case to the American people.”
The ad promises that, should the Libertarian ticket fail to poll 15% nationally following the first debate, Johnson and Weld will “make no further efforts for inclusion in subsequent debates.”