Stumbled onto this commentary at reason.com this morning. It's a rather convoluted (in my opinion) piece about how third parties can engage the two party system without embracing either.
He's referring to ballot fusion, or allowing candidates to be nominated by more than one party. That's only allowed in a handful of states right now but used to be fairly common.
The Libertarian Party has actually had some candidates win using ballot fusion, the last one I recall being a state house member in Vermont. Neil Randall was elected under a Republican/ Libertarian fusion ticket but, last I heard, he renounced his association with the LP after he took heat from Vermont libertarians for voting against some gay rights bill.
It would be nice if more states allowed ballot fusion. It would have been nice, back during the Gray Davis recall, if the LP of CA could have backed Tom McClintock for Governor as opposed to wasting the time and effort it took to have Ned Roscoe as the LP candidate.
Other times I'm not so sure I'd agree with such a practice. I wouldn't have wanted the LP to endorse any of the other candidates in the last three or four presidential elections. Of course, just because fusion ballots are allowed, doesn't mean third parties necessarily have to endorse a candidate from another party. They just have the option.
It's not a bad idea, though, and kind of goes along the line of part of what I try to do with this blog: Trying to get people to look at things in a different way so they'll be more accepting of individual liberty and thus more cautious in how they vote. If the Libertarian Party can gain strength and affect policy by interacting with the two major parties, that would pretty much work towards the same goal.
Then again, if more people could be persuaded to come around to a live and let live philosophy and respect for each others liberties, maybe there wouldn't be a reason for the Libertarian Party to be involved in electoral politics at all, but I don't see that happening anytime soon.