Lincoln Chafee, a tender-seeming bunny of a man who never stood a chance of becoming president, has officially switched parties for the fourth time, emerging today for the first time as a Libertarian. I’ve always thought of Libertarianism as more of a second or even first political party, but Chafee doesn’t play by society’s rules!
Chafee, who you may recall as the former governor and senator from Rhode Island who bumbled his way through the 2015 presidential debates and whimsically suggested the U.S. adopt the metric system, announced his party change on Tuesday.
“I bought property in Wyoming and registered to vote out there in my fourth party—I’m a Libertarian,” Chafee said, according to the Boston Globe. “It’s what I’ve always been—fiscally conservative and socially liberal.”
Is this extremely minor news in the scheme of the multivariate horrors that are our current political landscape? Yes. Does this nevertheless provide a great opportunity to reminisce about Chafee, a gentle, guileless cupcake best remembered for his teeny tiny polling numbers and the time he blamed misunderstanding a banking vote on the recent death of his father? Why yes, yes it does. And this lovely speech in which he says he’s had no scandals?
Look at those kind, damp eyes. Anyway, Chafee started out a Republican, spent several years as an independent, then became a Democrat. It was with that party that he dropped out of the presidential race before anyone could really figure out how to pronounce his name.
Asked whether he intends to return to politics in his new life as a Libertarian and Wyomingite, he said, “I’m still on sabbatical,” he said. “I’m out West. Wyoming is the reddest state. But my little county tends to be blue.”
Good for you, Lincoln Chafee. Good for you.