About Mark


FROM: Ellerton Pratt “Mark” Whitney, III
TO: My Fellow Citizens
RE: My "Crazy" Libertarian Family!
DATE: New Year's Day, 2020

In six days I will hit the national campaign trail. I have three goals: (a) become the 2020 Libertarian Presidential Nominee; (b) confront and defeat President Rickles and the Democrats' Tribute in the debates this fall; and (c) become the first Libertarian President of the United States. Before I hit the road, I want to spend a few minutes telling you about myself and my family.

I was a lousy student. But, in 1981, I married the valedictorian, and I think that should count! Julie and I have known each other since the sixth grade. We attended public school in a little town in Vermont. We recently turned 60. I’m running for President. And, days ago, Julie got her degree from Thomas Jefferson School of Law, which will sure come in handy at my impeachment! Julie’s maiden name was "Delikat". So, now I call her: "J.D.J.D." We know Julie's final overall GPA is 3.9, but we do not know her class rank. She is sure to be in the top five, which means she will give First Lady Lawyers, Michelle and Hillary a run for their money.

The thing you need to know about my family is that we think and create freely, taking full advantage of the freedoms guaranteed by the First Amendment. When our oldest son, Ellerton, comes home to visit he rides his bike 127 miles from L.A.’s Koreatown to San Diego. He does this in about 8 hours. Ellerton started working 20 hours a week when he was in the 10th grade and has never stopped working full time since his senior year of high school — despite a full load of AP courses. While still working full time he did University of California San Diego in three years, then banged out his MBA at San Diego State University. Ellerton is infamous for creating the ad: "Is he cheating on you?" His digital marketing genius themes have been a topic for comment in The Atlantic and New York Times. Ellerton serves as President of Whitney 2020, Inc.

Our youngest son, Chris (age 33), is 6'5" and weighs 140 pounds. When he was little, at bedtime we'd just slide him under the door. Chris was born nine weeks early. He is autistic. But — get this — we didn't tell him! Chris is a fascinating character who, all on his own, bootstrapped a $15M Amazon store with money he saved from his high school job at In n Out. He nevered borrowed, never paid a penny in interest, and retains 100% equity. Chris also manages investments for our entire family and he is really good at it!


In 1999, I created THELAWNET [hereinafter TLN], a software company that democratizes legal services for everyday Americans by providing affordable, industry-leading tools that make legal research fast and easy for everyday lawyers. For decades state and Federal government agencies, lawyers, judges, general counsels, and Native American peoples from coast-to-coast, have trusted TLN to provide them with comprehensive access to the law.

I would not have had the knowledge to create TLN had I not completely failed as a young entrepreneur in my twenties. Every horrible thing that can happen to a young family when a business fails happened to us. It was a case of “Predatory Lender Meets Predatory Borrower.” Thirty years later, I now realize what had to give so that I could learn what I needed to know in order to teach my sons how to do things right at the highest possible level. I turned our family's struggle into an award winning spoken-word memoir, that ultimately landed me on the cover of Story Magazine with Drew Carey and Russell Brand. You can watch me roll during a sold-out run at Washington, D.C.’s iconic Studio Theatre. No credit card, facial recognition, or DNA sample needed. Nuke a bag of popcorn, get ready to laugh, and keep the Kleenex handy.

In 2012, I unwittingly became the only private citizen to independently sue President Obama with an eye toward ending the unconstitutional participation of U.S. Armed Forces in the Libyan Civil War. My lawsuit, and a similar one Jonathan Turley filed on behalf of four members of Congress (two Republicans and two Democrats), were dismissed as moot because the conflict in Libya ended before the litigation could play out. In response to my suit, Obama's lawyers argued that since the Supreme Court has never defined the word "war", who is to really say what war is anyway?

Watch McKee’s interview of Mark Whitney HERE

San Diego Comedy Co-op

In 2006 Julie and I opened the San Diego Comedy Co-op, where we produced nearly 500 free shows for the community. We closed the Co-op shortly after I turned pro and started touring internationally. Before the Co-op, San Diego was a sleepy comedy town. But, the local comics who worked out at the Co-op learned that they didn't need permission from The Comedy Store to have a career. They started opening rooms of their own and today San Diego has four legit comedy clubs.

In 2016, I created Late Nite Last Week, the eventual #1 political satire podcast in the world. I produced and hosted this raw, uncensored, hard-hitting show for more than 3-1/2 years, from January 2016 – August 2019. I studied with Kurtis Matthews at the San Francisco Comedy College and Stephen Rosenfield at the American Comedy Institute in New York. In 2004, I won the San Francisco Comedy Convention for stand-up comedy.

The Office of President is unique in all of politics. In addition to being the second highest constitutional office — the office of Citizen being first — it is a role that actually requires comedic talent. The ability to get a chuckle on demand may not be dispositive. But, if you want to be the President and you do not have that skill, you have no chance. See, e.g., Is Anyone Entertaining Enough To Beat Donald Trump by Stephen Marche.  Comedian Jimmy Morales knows how to get a chuckle and today he is the President of Guatamala. Comedian Volodymyr Zelensky thrashed a corrupt billionaire President in a Ukrainian run-off on — get this — MY BIRTHDAY! Jus’ sayin’!

I am a long-time member of Toastmasters International who enjoys inspiring people to get up on stage and run their mouths, with no notes, no net, and no place to hide. In my perfect world everybody uses their voice. I don’t care what people say. I care only that they are actively engaged. My lecture “Bring Your Show: The Art & Business Of Humorous Storytelling” is considered the gold standard for would-be spoken-word artists. You can watch BYS for free by scrolling down a smidge.

Reintroducing Libertarian Gene Burns

The first time I heard anybody say "libertarian" was 1982. I was 22, and the speaker was the great Gene Burns. Sounded exactly like 9th grade civics. Gene and I worked together for two years in the WRKO Building, situated in the heart of Boston's Government Center. Five days a week, Gene opened his three hour call-in show with the same question: "What is the nature and role of Government in a free society?" (Gene answers that question herein.) Gene ended every show with: "The Gene Burns program is made possible by a grant from the First Amendment to the United States Constitution!" I well-remember the effort Gene put in to become a Libertarian Presidential Candidate in 1984. By the way, the reason Gene seems sort of all hunched up in the video below is that he was plagued with chronic back problems.

This is not the first time I've run for office. In 1977, I was elected President of the student council of Otter Valley Union High School. In 1996, I ran for office as a Libertarian, receiving 50% more votes in my county than Harry Browne (the then-Libertarian for President) received in the entire state. I have served on the Executive Committees of the San Diego Libertarian Party and the California Libertarian Party, respectively, and as an At-Large member of the LNC. I am a CA.L.P. Lifer. Julie and I are LP Lifers and provide recurring monthly financial support. In 2007, I headlined the California Libertarian Party Convention with a private performance of “Fool For A Client.” Best audience ever!

As President of THELAWNET, equal protection of the law and access to justice is my private-sector business. As President of the United States, restoring these neglected, public-sector principles will be my mission and sacred duty. My cabinet will be staffed 100% by people who fell, got up, reinvented themselves, and emerged better for the experience.  

I look forward to meeting you on the trail. To support my campaign, click the seal below, and keep banging!

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