Libertarian and Pro-Life Too: Why I Can’t Vote for Gary Johnson

Why This Libertarian Cannot Support, Endorse of Vote for Gary Johnson

By Lee Enochs

“This day I call the heavens and the earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live” (Deuteronomy 30:19).

As a follower of Jesus Christ, I believe in the historic Christian notion that life begins at the very moment of conception and that every human being, in their very earliest embryonic development, are created in the image of Almighty God.  I also believe  we have been endowed by our most benevolent creator with intrinsic worth, dignity and certain unalienable rights, preeminently among these, as the Jeffersonian influenced U.S. Constitution so eloquently affirms, Life, Liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

Because of my devout belief in the existence of the Judeo-Christian God and my unwavering commitment to Him, I am a pro-life Libertarian. I know that my devout Christian commitment and Libertarianism might appear oxymoronic to some people who traffic in Libertarian circles, yet, I believe it is entirely congruent with the Libertarian notions of maximum freedom and minimal government interference to defend the lives of the unborn and oppose abortion on demand.

For the record and the purpose of definitions, I affirm, with qualifications, to be a Libertarian, in the tradition of Robert Nozick, who, in his classic book, “Anarchy, State, and Utopia, argued in support of a minimal-state that was limited to the narrow function of protection against force, theft, fraud, enforcement of contracts and so on.”[1]

As a minimal-state Libertarian, I believe one of the most basic functions of government is to protect its citizens from hostile force.  I affirm the current Libertarian Party platform statement that, “the only legitimate use of force is in defense of individual rights—life, liberty, and justly acquired property—against aggression.”[2]

I believe that if government is to exist at all it is to exist to protect all of its citizens from harm, including the unborn. In fact, I believe that government should especially protect the weakest people among us and there is no group of people among us that need more protection than unborn children.

I know there is presently a debate in our society over the issue of when life begins and do not wish to cast dispersion upon those with different convictions on the right to life. However, for me and my house, we believe that life begins at conception and at the very moment of conception, each person should receive full protection and due process under the laws of our great land.

Because of my firm convictions on the right to life and his tendency to postulate that all Libertarians are, “Socially liberal and fiscally conservative,” I cannot endorse or support the Presidential candidacy of former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson at this time.  Governor Johnson is on record of affirming that he believes in the right for a woman to choose until the viability of a fetus.[3]

I believe the “viability of the fetus” argument maintained by Governor Johnson and other Libertarians is woefully inadequate and does not at all address the question if the infant in his or her mother’s womb in fact a human being or not. If the child, before “viability” is indeed a human being as I contend, he or she (not “it”) deserves full protection under the law irrespective of how long he or she has been in the womb.

I find it sad and tragic that the Supreme Court allows the abortion of infants in this country, but if a pregnant woman is murdered in the United States of America, her murderer will be charged for double homicide irrespective of the stage of embryonic development of the child in her womb.

Since the U.S. Supreme Court’s landmark and egregious 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling, over 54 million children have been lost via abortion. I personally believe this is a great blight and tragedy on our collective society that God will rightfully recompense one day and that we must reject the culture of abortion on demand. We should choose life that we might live (Deuteronomy 30:19).

I have taken a lot of heat lately for not supporting Gary Johnson by many of my liberty-minded friends, but I am personally joining a growing movement emerging in America today that affirms Libertarian ideas on limited government and maximum freedom, yet also affirms the right to life and that the unborn should be protected by the federal government.

There is no inconsistency between Libertarianism and the pro-life movement if you believe every unborn child, irrespective of chronological age and embryonic development is a human being deserving full protection and due process under law.

If government is to exist at all, it must protect all of our citizens, especially the unborn. 


[1] Nozick, R. (1975). Anarchy, state, and Utopia. Oxford, Blackwell. Page 26.

[2] See: Libertarian Party Platform 1. 9.

[3] Source: Tom Dickinson, Rolling Stone Magazine, June 15, 2011.



Lee Enochs (B.A., Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary) is the founder and director of Conservatives for California, a liberty minded and Constitution based, non-profit organization dedicated to the revitalization of small-government and conservative economic and political ideas throughout the great state of California. Lee is also currently a graduate student at Princeton Theological Seminary and is the author of the books, “The Case for Rand Paul” and, “A Biblical Defense of Capitalism” that can be purchased on  Lee is also a Christian who believes in the authority, inspiration and inerrancy of the Bible and the necessity of faith in Jesus Christ. If you have questions about anything written in this blog or about how to become a Christian through faith in Jesus Christ and His death on the cross, please email Lee at: 


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