First Libertarian Party presidential nominee John Hospers dies at 93

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

John Hospers
Image: John Hospers.

John Hospers, the United States Libertarian Party's first presidential nominee, died Sunday of natural causes at 93. 2008 Libertarian Party Vice Presidential nominee Wayne Allyn Root, who was a friend of Hospers, reported the death via his personal blog, and on Facebook, writing: "I have sad news to report ... John Hospers has passed away. Because of our close friendship, I was asked to announce his death to his many Libertarian fans. John was a friend of individual liberty and freedom, and the first Libertarian Presidential candidate. He passed quietly away in his sleep without pain and suffering, of natural causes."

He later added: "He was the sweetest man alive, and a very loyal friend of mine. He will be greatly missed by all. The Libertarian movement has lost a pioneer and hero."

Hospers was a renowned scholar who served as Professor Emeritus of Philosophy at the University of Southern California. However, he was best known for his 1972 run for president with the newly created Libertarian Party. He appeared on the ballot in only Washington and Colorado and received a combined 8,715 votes, but won an electoral vote from the faithless elector Roger MacBride of Virginia. Hospers was the latest third party presidential candidate to receive such a vote.

In recent years, Hospers was active on Facebook. In his final post on Saturday, he thanked his friends after celebrating his 93rd birthday two days earlier.