LHHS student becomes youngest Libertarian delegate
By Rebecca Canfield
While most teenagers spend their summers either on their phones, on the computer, or on the sofa, Liberty Hill’s Grant Deltz was doing something a little bit different.
This summer, Deltz decided to get involved in politics, and by mere chance ended up becoming the youngest delegate the Libertarian Party has ever had.
In June, Deltz attended the Libertarian Party’s National Convention in Orlando, and because the state of Ohio had some issues with their delegation, Deltz was asked to be a delegate, to which he responded with an emphatic “Yes.” Luckily for Deltz, because of the Libertarian Party of Ohio’s bylaws, this opportunity, was able to happen.
“I went there to Orlando with the intention of just being there as a campaign coordinator for Austin Petersen,” Deltz explained.
Yet Deltz got a huge surprise as opportunity came knocking.
According to Williamson County Libertarian Party Secretary Bo Zimmerman, getting to be a delegate, especially at such a young age is quite an honor. Zimmerman says it is something most people work very hard to obtain, and becoming a delegate can take years.
“A delegate gets the final say for all the bylaws and party rules. A delegate has the final say for all platform changes to our national platform,” Zimmerman explained. “We directly elect the presidential nominee, which is very different from the Republicans and the Democrats.”
Zimmerman also went on to explain how a delegate for the Libertarian Party can actually have a huge effect on the party as a whole, because in the Libertarian Party they are actually able to make suggestions and at times, implement changes to the party’s platform.
Deltz, who has closely followed the presidential elections since 2012 did an extensive amount of his own research before deciding to work with the Libertarian Party, explained Deltz’s mother, Ann Atkins-Shell.
“While at the convention, Grant worked behind the scenes to try and swing nomination votes and to help with campaign business,” Atkins-Shell said. “He assumed a leadership role on the floor of the delegation and even had the opportunity to rub shoulders and deliberate with people such as nominee Gary Johnson and tech pioneer John McAfee.”
Deltz, who has learned a lot through this opportunity, says that this experience has had a monumental impact on his ideas about government.
“Frankly, I’ve realized that government is way too big,” said Deltz. “The ideal government includes low to no taxes, a devout understanding of the Constitution, and would also respect the personal liberty and privacy of Americans.”
Deltz also stated that he would like to build upon this foundation, and wants to use that experience later on down the road.
“Perhaps I would like to follow through on a dream of mine and run for president myself,” Deltz said. “If I do, it would be in 2036 as a Libertarian. My priority would be to advance the cause of liberty.”
Deltz, who is currently beginning his senior year at Liberty Hill High School, says that he is a contributing writer for LibertyViral.com and would like to build upon that experience through either internships or as a Journalism major. Yet, Deltz also says he is interested in entrepreneurship, business, and especially real estate as well.
“I’m proud of him for getting involved and being a voice,” stated Atkins-Shell. “It’s so refreshing to see such a young, knowledgeable, enthusiastic group come together and work so hard advocating for our civil liberties, rights, and a brighter tomorrow with such passion.”