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Former Republican state committee chair-elect joins LP to run for Congress in October special election

Henry Herford - Libertarian for Congress, Louisiana 5th District
Henry Herford,
Libertarian for Congress,
Louisiana 5th District

Henry Herford Jr., famous among Ron Paul supporters and was the former Louisiana Republican state committee chair-elect, is running for Congress as a Libertarian.

In 2012, he was knocked down by Shreveport, La., police acting on the orders of state GOP officials to block his taking seat as Chair after being duly elected.

“The Libertarians will say no to foreign aid, cut OSHA, and cut FEMA,” said Herford, a retired teacher who lives in Delhi, La., at the north end of the sprawling 5th Congressional District. “I want to be known as the first congressman elected who’s a member of a party that’s for cutting out things, not increasing them. Everyone wants to go to the government and create another agency. But we’ve maxed out the credit card.”

As part of his campaign, he is seeking to abolish the IRS and the Department of Homeland Security, as well as repeal Obamacare, the Patriot Act, and the National Defense Authorization Act’s language pertaining to indefinite detention. According to the Herford for Congress campaign website, he also wants to “bring the troops home from unconstitutional and unnecessary overseas wars and deployments” and decriminalize marijuana federally while allowing states to regulate the drug.

Herford is running in a special election made possible by the surprise retirement of Republican Rep. Rodney Alexander, who announced on Aug. 6 that he would step down. The special election is set for Oct. 19. If none of the 14 candidates who have qualified for the ballot is able to win more than 50 percent of the vote, a runoff with the top two vote-getters will be held on Nov. 16.

Voter turnout in off-year elections is typically low, with 20 percent at most expected to vote. With the support of libertarians and disaffected conservatives, Herford says he could make it to a runoff against Monroe Mayor Jamie Mayo, a Democrat who is likely to secure most of the black vote that makes up about one third of the district’s population.

“The potential is there — I’m not a paper candidate,” he said.

Campaigning across the district — which encompasses all or part of 24 of the state’s 64 parishes.

Herford had been trying to take his rightful place as chairman of the Republican state convention after supporters of presidential hopeful Ron Paul were elected to fill 61 percent of the delegate slots.

But ousted GOP officials called in police to remove him when Herford was elected chairman of the convention on a voice vote and rose to speak.

“I’m running for my four daughters’ future, and for everybody else’s future,” said Herford. “The future of America rests with the Libertarian Party. The other two parties have bankrupted this country.”