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For the project to succeed, the group must expand recruiting to include more traditional libertarian groups, though Tampa, Fla., lawyer Tim Condon and others know it will be difficult.

“It’s not easy to persuade people to leave home and go somewhere where it’s cold in the winter, to alter their lives and change the world,” Mr. Condon said. “We’ve got to find committed people who are excited about liberty.”

He said some libertarians have even gone as far as saying Free State members are going to “freeze in the dark.”


Refining, rehearsing

As a result, the group has begun refining and rehearsing its message.

“Over the last 30 years, libertarians have not had much of an impact,” said Mr. Boncer, who delivered his practice speech while dressed in black boots, cargo pants and a black T-shirt that read “Extremely toxic.”

“We’re too scattered, and there are too few of us who remember what freedom is about anymore,” he continued, before launching into the group’s mission statement.

Miss Phillips then stood and gave a critique.

“Great job mentioning the Web site,” she said. “That’s something we always want to do. And Phil mentioned it like three times.”

Miss Phillips encouraged members to use the term “we” instead of “I” or “they.”

Their attention then turned to potential new members. They made a running list with libertarians, gun-rights advocates and home-schoolers at the top. Next came groups against taxes, groups for legalizing marijuana and groups promoting homosexuality or other “lifestyle alternatives.”

After about two hours, Mr. Condon asked what has become the defining question for many members.

“How do we respond to people who say, ‘You’re for incest, heroin and bestiality, right?’”

Miss Phillips said only that members can do what they want when in New Hampshire, then returned to discussing the group’s goals of moving 20,000 “freedom-loving people” to the state.

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