KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Missouri Senate race has been getting national attention since Candidate Todd Akin’s remarks about abortion and rape. But Senator Claire McCaskill isn’t the only one hoping to gain votes from Akin’s gaffe. National political pundits think Libertarian Jonathan Dine could have a strong showing in November but what do you know about the candidate’s history?
Jonathan Dine’s Libertarian party leaders say he’s well spoken and good at spreading the word about Libertarianism. But what might surprise some people is that Dine has a criminal record, even a felony conviction, and yet federal law doesn’t prevent him from running for office.
33 year-old Jonathan Dine has many beliefs and platforms for the US Senate race, but there’s one he often talks about: legalizing marijuana.
At Hempfest 2012, Dine said he believes “the war on drugs criminalizes peaceful people.”
Dine knows about the war on drugs first hand. In 2006, he was found guilty of possession of marijuana, a felony charge. He was sentenced to three years in prison but served less than a year. The probable cause shows Dine called police about a disruptive person in his home and police saw four marijuana plants in plain view. They seized more than 500 grams of marijuana. Dine said they were his friend’s plants but he admitted to police that he smoked it regularly, used meth occasionally and has tried cocaine.
But Dine’s criminal record doesn’t stop there. He’s also been convicted of identity theft and theft in Kansas. He has told other reporters that he used his brother’s drivers license to buy a car.
More recently he got a DWI in December 2011. The judge gave him a suspended sentence, which means he’s on probation right now and for the next two years.
FOX 4 spoke to a woman who says she knew Dine well about five or six years ago. Alyssa didn’t want us to use her last name, but she says he knew Dine back when she was heavily using drugs (she says she’s been clean for several years now.) She couldn’t believe Dine was able to be on the ballot. The Missouri Secretary of State says that even though there’s state law banning convicted felons from running for state office, there’s no law like that for federal office.
“It shocked me because I’ve seen all the terrible things he’s done and I don’t believe someone like that should be running,” Alyssa says.
FOX 4 tried several times today to talk to Dine but weren’t able to reach him for comment. But again his own party leaders say they don’t have any problem with his convictions, saying that the party is all about personal liberties.
Dine will be on stage at Friday’s US Senate Race Debate in Columbia, Mo.