Austin Petersen

American political commentator

Austin Wade Petersen (born February 19, 1981) is an American producer, writer, political activist, and commentator. He was the runner-up for the Libertarian Party's nomination for President of the United States in 2016, finishing second place to former governor Gary Johnson with 21% of the vote.

Austin Petersen
Austin Petersen at 2016 FreedomFest cropped.jpg
Petersen at FreedomFest, July 2016
Personal details
Austin Wade Petersen

(1981-02-19) February 19, 1981 (age 40)
Independence, Missouri, U.S.
Political partyRepublican (after 2017)
Other political
Libertarian (until 2017)
ResidenceKansas City, Missouri
Alma materMissouri State University
OccupationCEO of Stonegait LLC Publisher at The Libertarian Republic
Known forFormer 2016 Libertarian Party presidential candidate

As of 2016, Petersen is the owner and CEO of a photo and video consulting firm called Stonegait LLC and is the founder of The Libertarian Republic and Liberty Viral, both libertarian news and commentary websites.[1][2][3]

Early lifeEdit

Petersen was born in Independence, Missouri, but raised on a farm in Peculiar, Missouri. He is the son of Donna and John D. Petersen. He studied at Missouri State University, where he graduated with a degree in musical theater.

United States presidential campaign, 2016Edit

Petersen was running for President of the United States in the 2016 presidential election for the presidential nomination for the Libertarian Party.[4]

After Gary Johnson won the nomination for President of the United States of the Libertarian Party (United States), Petersen delivered a concession speech. During the speech, Petersen said, "You have my full support, my full respect, and my gun!" and proceeded to gift Johnson with a replica of George Washington's flintlock pistol. Petersen could not, however, endorse Johnson's preferred Vice Presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Governor, William Weld. He threw his support to ballot access lawyer Alicia Dearn. Afterwards, Gary Johnson threw away the pistol that Austin Petersen had given him.[5]

Petersen has stated his intention to return home to spend time with his family, to relax, and to recover from the strenuous months of campaigning. He looks forward to supporting Gary Johnson's presidential campaign and working to further the ideals of the Libertarian Party (United States).

Post-political activitiesEdit

A few months after losing the Libertarian Nomination for President Petersen has done Facebook Live streams where he talks about current political issues and has stated he is interested in running for President in 2020.

United States senate campaign, 2018Edit

On July 4, 2017, Petersen announced that he is running under the Republican Party in the 2018 Missouri Senate race against current Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill.[6]


  1. Nelson, Steven (May 4, 2016). "Libertarians Say 'Brave' Ted Cruz Should Endorse Them, Not Trump". U.S. News and World Report. Retrieved August 7, 2016.
  2. Harper, Jennifer (March 31, 2016). "Libertarian hopefuls spar over Nazi-themed wedding cake on Fox Business Network presidential forum". Washington Times. Retrieved August 7, 2016.
  3. Libit, Daniel (April 14, 2016). "Where are all the Ron 'Paulite' libertarians in 2016?". CNBC. Retrieved August 7, 2016.
  4. "Austin Petersen declares for the Libertarian Party 2016 presidential nomination". Retrieved 24 December 2015.
  5. "Is Libertarian Gary Johnson a factor in Clinton-Trump matchup?". Washington Post. Retrieved 2017-03-05.
  6. Petersen, Austin (July 4, 2017). "Why I'm running as a Republican for U.S. Senate". The Kansas City Star. Retrieved July 4, 2017.

Other websitesEdit