Rupert rocks ice cream competition, energizes Libertarians at Henry County Fair
By Rick Yencer
NEW CASTLE, IN - Watching Survivor star and Libertarian gubernatorial candidate Rupert Boneham judge a homemade ice cream contest is entertainment in itself.
And its the most fun that Bonham has had at a county fair when he had more than a dozen favors to judge at the Henry County 4-H Fair on Sunday. While, butter pecan and chocolate seemed to be the favor, Boneham smiled and laughed when he pulled out a handful of pictures to autograph along with flyers to tell the story of more freedom and less government that is the way of the Libertarian Party.
If Boneham is governor, he would likely give away that big state surplus to the people and charity like he did his $1 million in winnings when the people chose him as their favorite survivor. A tested CBS celebrity, Boneham continues to give back, working with youth offenders in a mentoring program that teaches personal responsibility, education, respect and work ethic.
Like like on Survivor, Rupert is known for his compassion, integrity and honesty. And on Sunday, he did not leave until everybody got to talk with him, while handing out autographed pictures of the celebrity.
His visit in the heart of Libertarian land in Indiana was a chance for Rex Bell, Libertarian for 6th District congressional seat, and newcomer Jeremiah Morrell, Libertarian for the Indiana House District 54 seat, to do some campaigning too. Rupert wore Morrell's campaign shirt instead of his Team Rupert tie dyed to help the young Libertarian in his quest to upset veteran Rep. Tom Saunders, R-Lewisville,
Rupert talked about personal freedom and understanding the life of average Hoosiers who live from day to day or paycheck to paycheck He is no fan of government or politicians like his opponents, Republican Mike Pence, and Democrat John Gregg, and their sound bites and empty promises to voters.
The campaign platform Rupert hands out is pretty simple, End the I-STEP and expand charter schools, restore contract rights between employers and labor, create a state spending cap and change entitlement to empowerment programs for communities. Rupert is proud that as a small business owner and entrepreneur, he has sustained his business and charity work through private donations and not tax dollars.
Misguided government actually harms communities, Rupert says in his campaign platform, adding that career politicians are often the problem.
That seems to fit Pence who has served more than a decade in Congress and Gregg, a former state lawmakers and Speaker of the House, who was once a lobbyist for the coal industry.
Last week, Gregg was talking about reforming the Indiana Department of Child Services that has been hit with funding cuts while Pence wanted to give a preference to veteran-owned business on state contracts.
Meanwhile, Rupert was on the county fair circuit talking about personal freedom and less government and just meeting with everyday people and finding out what was on their minds.
Chris and Natalie Gwinn has Team Rupert tie dyed on and were talking to their friend, later saying about genuine and caring he was about people. Rupert once bought a snake at their pet store and they have been friends ever since.
Rex Bell said Rupert was a great crowd pleaser and Libertarians were glad to see their celebrity make a stop locally. Bell has been a Libertarian candidate before and his wife Susan, is the Libertarian judge in Hagerstown.
Bell acknowledged that Libertarians only had active organizations in six of the 19 counties that make up the TH congressional district, Republican Luke Messer, a former state representative, and Brad Bookout, a former Delaware County Council member and county redevelopment director, are the major party candidates.And the new district leans Republican just like old district where Pence was repeatedly re-elected.
Libertarians generally receive only a few percent of the vote in a general election, but some political pundits think Rupert could be the heartbreaker, meaning he could get enough votes to decide whether Pence wins or loses. Pence already spent $1.4 million in the past couple months which is more that Gregg has been able to raise so far in the campaign.
But Rupert, who has spent only a few thousand dollars, still takes his campaign directly to the people, finding some believe it's time for the people to take back their freedom and make government more accountable and responsible.