Among the disaffected are Washington residents and political exiles, most of them libertarians.
“Right now, people think there are two ways to do it — the Democratic way or the Republican way,” said Miss Brooks, a Californian who plans to close her business selling hand-painted yarns. “They get so entrenched in the Washington way, and nothing really happens, and you get in this terrible situation where all this money is spent and nothing really happens.”
Two group members are already New Hampshire state representatives and new arrivals such as Calvin Pratt are making scorecards ranking each of the state’s 24 senators and 400 staterepresentatives on their “pro-liberty” voting records.
Eight of the senators received F’s, 11 received D’s, one got a C, two received B’s and one receive an incomplete grade.
State Sen. John Gallus, a Republican, was the only senator to receive an A.
Mr. Pratt and his wife, Karen, arrived in Goffstown, N.H., from Chicago in December, the day before the first Nor’easter of the winter. Mrs. Pratt, 44, quit her job as a senior executive at Merrill Lynch so the couple could move, and her severance package is paying the bills and the mortgage on their new house.
Mrs. Pratt is the treasurer and an organizer of Free State and the New Hampshire Liberty Alliance. She calls herself more of a “nuts and bolts” person than her husband, who is a self-taught political ideologue. Her interests in government are more immediate, about how the system affects lives.
Mr. Pratt, 53, runs his own Internet sales company and has quickly become one of the most active Free State and the Liberty Alliance members.
The Pratts and Amanda Phillips, the group’s president and spokeswoman, are among thefive Free State members appointed to the committee on government efficiency.
“Liberty is like oxygen,” Miss Phillips said. “It’s so important to me that I’m willing to pack up everything and move and make a career change.”
Miss Phillips favors the privatization of government functions and allowing the free market to meet all needs, but says: “I’ll probably never see my anarchist utopia … but I’m willing to ride the freedom train as far as other people want to.”
No easy road
Despite the enthusiasm and intermediate successes, competing against the more powerful and wealthier Democrats and Republicans will be difficult.
Miss Phillips and some Free State members — including founder Jason Sorens, 27, a political philosophy lecturer at Yale University — have no immediate plans to come to New Hampshire, and right now fewer than 100 members have done so, with most waiting until the group has reached its goal of 20,000 members.
Miss Phillips said she intends to move to New Hampshire, but right now cannot because of her 8-year-old daughter and a well-paying financial job at a Fortune 500 company in Boston.View Entire Story
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