History of Libertarian Party of Monterey County

Only a few years after the founding of the Libertarian Party in 1971, a local branch started up in Monterey County, California. Some of the early chairs included Gordon Corbett, a substitute teacher; Ken Bowers, a controller for the Bud Antle, Inc. company; Ray Bledsaw, a retired veteran; and Richard Lunquist, a dentist who used his Carmel Valley business location as a temporary office for the party. More recent chairs have included business owner, Robert Ratto, insurance agent, Mark Dierolf, and author Lawrence Samuels (In Defense of Chaos: The Chaology of Politics, Economics and Human Action), who became chair in 2009.

One of the most newsworthy events in the history of Libertarian Party of Monterey County occurred during an effort to eliminate or reduce the 6 percent utility user tax in five cities in 2008 through the ballot box. Out of the five, only the city of Greenfield successfully ousted the tax. The various city governments spent hundreds of thousands of public dollars to fight the tax decrease while they and their surrogates engaged in a smear campaign of almost epic proportions.

Charging that City Hall had unlawfully expended public funds on improper partisan election campaigning, Mark Dierolf and Angelina Vargas sued the city of Salinas. The case eventually found its way to the state of California Supreme Court—and became known as Vargas v. the City of Salinas.

The ruling by the California Supreme Court was mixed, but reaffirmed that governmental bodies could not use taxpayer’s money to oppose or support political measures. However, in an attempt to punish Vargas and Dierolf for whistleblowing, the city of Salinas slapped a $200,000 court costs on the plaintiffs in 2012, and increased that amount to another $100,000 in 2013. 

The Libertarian Party is your representative in local politics. It is the only political organization which respects you as a unique and competent individual.

America’s Heritage

Libertarians believe in the American heritage of liberty, enterprise, and personal responsibility. Libertarians recognize the responsibility we all share to preserve this precious heritage for our children and grandchildren.

Free and Independent

Libertarians believe that being free and independent is a great way to live. We want a system which encourages all people to choose what they want from life; that lets them live, love, work, play, and dream their own way.

Caring For People

The Libertarian way is a caring, people-centered approach to politics. We believe each individual is unique. We want a system which respects the individual and encourages us to discover the best within ourselves and develop our full potential.

Principled; Consistent

The Libertarian way is a logically consistent approach to politics based on the moral principle of self-ownership. Each individual has the right to control his or her own body, action, speech, and property. Government’s only role is to help individuals defend themselves from force and fraud.


The Libertarian Party is for all who don’t want to push other people around and don’t want to be pushed around themselves. Live and let live is the Libertarian way.