Deer Valley Libertarian has gift of gab |

Deer Valley Libertarian has gift of gab

Patrick Parkinson, Of the Record staff

It is the first time two university graduates from the same class have campaigned for president, said Libertarian presidential candidate Wayne Allyn Root, who owns a home in Deer Valley.

But Root didn’t know fellow student Barack Obama when he finished his political science degree at Columbia University in 1983.

A major difference between him and Obama is Obama has never run a small business, Root said.

"I have probably started a dozen, maybe 15 businesses. Some have failed, some have succeeded," Root said in a telephone interview. "Would you really trust someone to run the greatest economy in the history of the world, who has never created a job?"

Libertarians claim to be the nation’s 3rd largest political party. It was founded in 1971.

Root said he expects to receive the party’s presidential nomination when nearly 1,000 Libertarian delegates convene Memorial Day weekend in Denver.

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"Less spending and lower taxes, that’s what I believe in," Root said.

That could begin with withdrawing American troops from Iraq within 18 months if elected president.

"Everyone has said, ‘We want you to get the troops out of Iraq,’" Root said. "We never should have been there. Afghanistan was the right war, Iraq was the wrong war."

He criticized Republicans for growing government under the Bush administration.

"Republicans hand out the goodies to the rich and to corporate big shots and lobbyists," Root said. "Their friends at Halliburton and Blackwater."

Where matters of privacy are concerned, the two major parties have also failed, said Root, who is a professional odds-maker in Las Vegas.

He criticized Republicans who have sponsored legislation to ban online gambling in the United States.

"It’s none of the government’s business if I want to play poker in my house, or make a bet on a sports team in my house," Root said.

"Republicans are Big Brother. They’re the biggest busybodies in the world."

If elected president, Root said he would support rights for homosexuals and expanded stem-cell research.

He also favors legalizing marijuana.

"There is no difference between marijuana and a drink," Root said.

Meanwhile, Root criticized members of Congress who voted to send taxpayers rebate checks to help stimulate the sagging economy.

"We’re borrowing it from China, then we’re going to give it to the American people so they can spend it on Chinese goods," he said.

As president, to create competition, Root, 46, says he would support education vouchers and health-care choices for Americans.

"There should be a small businessman running the government," he said.

Root wrote the book "Millionaire Republican" and has appeared on MSNBC, CNBC and Fox News.

When he was 16 years old, members of the New York media labeled Root the "Betting Whiz Kid" for his knack for predicting game results.

Today Root says he finds whatever excuse he can to travel to Park City from his home in Henderson, Nev.

"Nothing is greater than a summer in Park City," he said.

While he does not expect to win the presidency in 2008, Root said could receive five million votes.

"The two candidates are so flawed, whether it’s Hillary or Barack up against John McCain," Root said. "Will I set all-time records in the history on Libertarian politics? Absolutely."