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Leader Richard McGrath
President Craig Milmine
Deputy Nik Haden
Founded 1995 (1995)
Headquarters P.O. Box 6173, Wellesley Street, Auckland 1141
Ideology Objectivist-based libertarianism
International affiliation No affiliation
Official colours Royal and light blue
MPs in the House of Representatives None
Politics of New Zealand
Political parties

Libertarianz is a political party in New Zealand (hence the suffix -nz) based on the political platform of libertarianism favouring self-government and on limiting the power of the government on the individual. Ayn Rand's philosophy of Objectivism is a major influence on the party. Its slogan, "More Freedom, Less Government", is indicative of the party's basic policy platform.

Libertarianz is generally regarded as being consistent in its libertarian ideology and is considerably more radical than ACT New Zealand (the other political party in New Zealand that is sometimes called libertarian). Libertarianz does not consider ACT to be a libertarian party. Libertarianz describes ACT's policies as "crony capitalism writ large", saying that ACT supports "collusion between the state and big business" rather than the complete separation of state and economy.



Libertarianz was founded in late 1995 by Ian Fraser, who served as the party's first leader. Later, Lindsay Perigo, a well-known New Zealand broadcaster for Radio New Zealand and TVNZ, assumed the leadership. After Perigo stepped down, the party was led by Peter Cresswell and then by Russell Watkins. The current leader is Richard McGrath, and the Party president is Craig Milmine.

The party's first campaign was the 1996 election, the first to be held under the new MMP electoral system. Libertarianz gained 671 votes(0.03%), this put the party in 19th place. In the 1999 elections, the party performed somewhat better, gaining 5,949 votes (0.29%). This put the party in 11th place, and in fourth place among the parties which did not gain seats in parliament. In the 2002 elections, however, Libertarianz did not contest the party vote - due to an oversight, the party's bank cheque was not transmitted to the electoral authorities by the appointed time. As such, the party was only able to contest the election through individual electorate candidates. The party's five candidates gained 672 votes amongst them.

Darnton v Clark

On 29 June 2006, Bernard Darnton filed proceedings in the High Court, suing Helen Clark for allegedly misappropriating public funds to pay for the Labour Party's pledge cards during the 2005 election. Some commentators labelled the lawsuit a stunt, although it received some media coverage as concern about the "pledge card" funding grew. [1] [2].

On Sunday 10 September 2006, the lawsuit was the subject of a front-page story[3] in the Sunday Star Times newspaper. The Labour party promptly accused the Libertarianz party of being part of a conspiracy with the National party, alleging that the small party could not afford to bring such a case to court.[4]

In October 2006, after the Auditor-General released a report declaring that the misappropriation of funds was illegal, Labour and other political parties immediately announced that they would pay back the money. On October 17 and 18, a majority, including the Labour Party, passed a law through Parliament to 'retrospectively validate' the spending, making it legal, which is required under the Public Finance Act 1989. In the circumstances, however, it also effectively makes the misspending immune from court proceedings.

In response, the Libertarianz party declared October 18, 2006 to be "Banana Republic Day", and issued press releases.

At the Mount Albert by-election (13 June 2009), Julian Pistorius stood as the candidate for Libertarianz and polled in ninth place (39 votes), lowest of all party-affiliated candidates who contested that by-election.

New Zealand General Election 2008

The Libertarianz party contested the 2008 New Zealand General Election, which was held on November 8. It fielded candidates in at least 13 electorates [4]. Altogether, it received only 1050 votes (0.05% of the total proportion of votes cast).

Election results (1996-2008)

Election # of seats won # of party votes  % of popular vote
did not contest
did not contest


See also

External links


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