AUSTIN, Texas -- In less than three weeks Gov. Greg Abbott will debate his democratic challenger, Lupe Valdez.
While voters will of course see both of their names on the ballot, there will also be one more.
Mark Tippetts is running for governor as a Libertarian, but he wasn't invited to the debate. Based on past elections and televised debates, it is a common occurrence.
Libertarians are fighting to be recognized as the election nears. Tippetts said his party has worked hard to land space on ballots nationwide.
"[We want] to dispel the idea that we're a third party. It's only an idea in the Democrats and the Republicans’ mind because we are crashing their party," said Tippetts.
When voters go to their polling place in November, they'll see more than 70 libertarian candidates on their ballot.
Some voters say they value having another option.
"Too many people have really nuanced opinions. They're not straight democrat or republicans," said one voter.
Clark Patterson is running to represent District 35 in the U.S. House of Representatives. He said he has been part of the Libertarian party for more than 30 years, and he agrees with Tippetts; it's time for an even playing field during election season.
"We are a viable party, we are registered in all 50 states and have been for a long time," said Tippetts.
Votes for a Libertarian candidate tend to work as a tie-breaker for highly contested races, drawing votes away from one candidate, often helping another, which could very well be the case this year.