A Conversation with Assemblyman Michael Patrick Carroll

To be an effective advocate for progressive causes and social issues, it is important that you know your opponents. Understanding their positions, especially those coming from smart people with whom you may disagree, will help you hone your position and strengthen your arguments.

With that in mind, Joey Novick and I travelled to Morris Township earlier today to have a conversation with Republican Assemblyman Michael Patrick Carroll. Carroll is a libertarian in the Ron Paul mode, and while most of his views are outside of what we may consider the mainstream, he is firmly entrenched in his principals. Our discussion included slavery, marriage equality, the voting rights act, anti-bullying legislation, medical marijuana, and what to do about Camden’s crime and poverty. Some of Carroll’s thoughts may be surprising or even shocking.

Comments (13)

  1. bgergi

    of all the principled conservatives you could have chosen, you interviewed one of the most reactionary elected officials in our state.

    Carroll claims to be an expert on many things, here he is a “civil war expert.” And yet, the way he continues to defend his ignorant view of the legacy of slavery is appalling.

    I support dialogue, but there can be no dialogue with such an ideologue. If we remember, he was the sole member of the Assembly to oppose protecting children from bullies.

  2. mmgth

    I actually decided to google “Michael Patrick Carroll” as I presumed this was an elaborate Joey Novick joke using an actor.  

  3. deciminyan (Post author)

    Maybe mmgth is right. I never asked to see his papers. For all I know, it could have been a Kenyan impersonating an Irishman.

  4. iknowhowitis

    There’s a Facebook page called NJ District 25 Against Michael Patrick Carroll – they’ve been following him for a while now. MPC used to have a blog where he poured out his outrageous opinions on a regular basis. When he was (briefly) nominated for a judgeship, the blog was deleted – but this Facebook page had been quoting it for a while, so there’s some record there. Some of the incredible Carroll quotes preserved there:

    “You crank out a kid and you can’t afford it, that’s your problem.”

    “An armed populace is the greatest bulwark of freedom.”

    “Simply put, why would anyone in Newark give a damn about how much their schools cost, since they aren’t paying a nickel for them? OF COURSE they build Taj Mahals; the schools are ‘free'”.

    “Eliminating departments such as Black Studies, Africana Studies, Women and Gender studies, etc., and replacing them with real scholarship – as opposed to “Introduction to Victimology and Political Correctness 101″ – could save millions while, at the same time, ensuring that people who attend college actually receive an education.”

    “Minimum wage laws…benefit the working poor essentially not at all, unless a suburban teen with a gas payment to support counts as ‘poor.’ And they indisputably destroy jobs.”

    It goes on and on….


  5. the pollster

    As the chair of the Policy Committee for my school board, I read the whole thing. There are absolutely penalties for bullying. There are absolutely steps in place for helping the bully recognize his/her behavior and work to stop it. That’s one of the great things about this bill–it recognizes that these are kids who need to learn how to behave.  

  6. southernbluedog

    He’s always posting on Facebook. I give him credit for not hiding behind a staff all the time.

    I just couldn’t stand to read a lot of his posts and comments. His arrogance is chilling. He’s never wrong and there is no compromising.

    Of course, he doesn’t care what we think about him. The voters in his district probably eat this stuff up and will continue to re-elect him until he retires.

  7. Jersey Jazzman

    “I didn’t say what I really meant to say, but it’s your fault for not reading my mind.”

    Dear lord, libertarians are such an odd lot. People who are denied the chance to get married are nothing more than an intellectual exercise.

    And he thinks people will move into Camden if you offer school vouchers. Oy.

    I’ll give him credit, though: he’s not afraid of a debate. Excellent work Joey and deci.


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