Timothy Sandefur and Doug Mataconis say there is no such case. I think this is a dramatic overreaction; one can be disappointed in Romney's libertarian credentials (why is the campaign microtargeting me with anti-free-trade brochures?) and recognize that there is a substantial material difference between Romney and Obama to libertarian ideals in practice. That difference can be found in one important place: the Supreme Court. Sandefur puts too much weight on the symbolic appointment of Robert Bork to his legal advisory committee, but Bork is a figurehead for purposes of the primaries. He is not going to be deeply involved in policy-making or judicial selection; the Romney Justice Department will largely be staffed by the same Federalist Society members that happily invite Sandefur to speak before them. Sandefur claims "Romney's appointees are just as likely to be bad as good," but that's true only if one lets the perfect be the enemy of the good. Justices Kennedy and Scalia are in their late 70s, and both are the critical fifth vote on tremendously important libertarian principles:
- There are four justices on the Supreme Court ready to hold that the First Amendment does not bar Congress from regulating political speech against incumbents.
- There are four justices on the Supreme Court ready to hold that the Second Amendment does not create any individual rights against the government.
- There are four justices on the Supreme Court ready to hold that the Commerce Clause creates no constraint on Congress's regulatory powers.
- There are likely at least four justices on the Supreme Court ready to hold that the government can choose to discriminate on the basis of race if "diversity" is at issue.