Sharpton Frets that Gary Johnson Is ‘Taking Votes from Hillary Clinton’

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The Libertarian Party candidate for president, Gary Johnson, joined Al Sharpton on MSNBC’s PoliticsNation Sunday to discuss the prospects of a third party’s chances of success in 2016. But Sharpton’s real goal seemed to be to defend Hillary Clinton and discredit Libertarians by asking Johnson, “Do you ever have any slight fear even that you may be taking votes from Hillary Clinton and helping to elect Donald Trump?

But before Sharpton’s blatant shilling for Clinton he took shots at the Libertarian Party in ways that seemed to be designed to discredit them. “Now I couldn’t help but notice you’ve talked about criminal justice reform. You talked about reforming these sentencing laws,” Sharpton inquired of Johnson, “Can this be a new way of expanding the support of the Libertarian Party?” The MSNBC host implied that the Party’s position on criminal justice reform was a new play to expand themselves, but in reality those kinds of reforms have been important to them for a long time.

Johnson was also grilled by Sharpton about his support for the 1964 Civil Rights Act at recent Libertarian debate. “Some booed you— and I might add—you're the only candidate up there that said you would have voted for it,” Sharpton noted. “Does it make you uncomfortable about some of those in the Libertarian Party movement,” Sharpton continued, implying debate attendees were racists. “Well first of all, I'm the Libertarian nominee so the Libertarian Party chose me as their spokesperson along with Bill Weld,” Johnson shot back, defending the party.

From there Sharpton cranked up his stumping for Clinton with this ridiculous question:

Let me ask you this: In your quite moments when you have your time to reflect and really think through what you’re about, do you ever have any slight fear even that you may be taking votes from Hillary Clinton and helping to elect Donald Trump?

Transcript below: 

MSNBC
PoliticsNation
August 14, 2016
8:18:26 AM Eastern

AL SHARPTON: Now I couldn’t help but notice you’ve talked about criminal justice reform. You talked about reforming these sentencing laws. Can this be a new way of expanding the support of the Libertarian Party? You taking these kinds of positions?

GARY JOHNSON: Well, you pointed out earlier among the age group 18 to 24 I'm actually leading. So, I think kids understand this that we need to do with mandatory sentencing. Three strikes you're out. It's got a lot of nonviolent victimless— nonviolent people behind bars.

SHARPTON: Well, it's Sunday morning. You're preaching to the choir on that one with me but let me go another step further in the debate, the libertarian candidate debate you were asked a question about would you sign or support the 1964 Civil Rights Act? And you said yes. Let me play this for you.

[Cuts to video]

DEBATE MODERATOR: Governor Johnson, the Civil Rights Act of 1964 ended discrimination in both the private sector and the public sector. If you had been in the senate how would you have voted?

JOHNSON: I would have voted for it.

[Cheers and boos]

[Cuts back to live]

SHARPTON: Now you had a mixed reaction. Some booed you— and I might add—you're the only candidate up there that said you would have voted for it. Does it make you uncomfortable about some of those in the Libertarian Party movement?

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JOHNSON: Well first of all, I'm the Libertarian nominee so the Libertarian Party chose me as their spokesperson along with Bill Weld. I just think it's important to not— you know, to not support discrimination in anyway whatsoever.

SHARPTON: Let me ask you this: In your quite moments when you have your time to reflect and really think through what you’re about, do you ever have any slight fear even that you may be taking votes from Hillary Clinton and helping to elect Donald Trump?

JOHNSON: Not in the least. I really think that if you're going to change things in this country you need to vote for the person you believe in. Keep government out of my pocketbook, keep government out of my bedroom, and then let's stop with these military interventions. And we should embrace immigration. We're a country of immigrants. Let's not build a fence across the border and let's not be talking about killing the families Muslim of terrorists.