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Quirky Libertarian Group Meets at Hub to Watch Voting Results

By Paul Biasco | November 7, 2012 10:37am
 The Chicago Libertarian Group's Watch Party at the Lincoln Restaurant Tuesday night.
The Chicago Libertarian Group's Watch Party at the Lincoln Restaurant Tuesday night.
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DNAinfo/Paul Biasco

NORTH CENTER — As a long-time group of Libertarians leaned back in low seated leather chairs at the Lincoln Restaurant Tuesday night, focus on the TV in the corner of the room was lacking.

The group of about 12 Libertarians at the watch party rambled from discussion of mass exodus movements in New Hampshire to discussions of where to break into the Chicago political landscape.

"Lincoln Restaurant is kind of a liberty hub," said Jon Pawelko, a software developer who runs a satirical political blog by night. "This room was kind of the home base."

A few of the attendees were at the long-time home of the Chicago Libertarian meetup for their first time and argued with the group on the merits of the Chicago red light cameras and the campaign of presidential candidate Gary Johnson.

"I called my mom and I said, 'I just voted for Gary Johnson,' and she said 'Who?'" said 31-year-old Jaime Haak of Lakeview. "We had tickets to McCormick Place and Romney's party and we chose here."

The waitress making rounds in the large room, which the group rents out each month for a guaranteed order of $5 a person, knew most of the members by name.

Most of the group was hoping to hear a snippet of Gary Johnson's name on air or a mention of the party as they had high hopes of reaching between 3 and 5 percent of the national vote. He was the only member of the Libertarian party to make the ballot in Chicago.

Although the group rarely talked of the actual national election results, the members were nearly split between Obama and Romney.

"Romney's not going to do anything," said Gregor Morril, 33, of North Center. "No one's going to do anything different."