Harry Browne, who twice ran for president as the Libertarian Party candidate, has died. He was 72.

Browne, an author and investment adviser, died at his home Wednesday night, family friend Jim Babka said. He died of Lou Gehrig's disease.

Browne received 485,134 votes, or 0.5 percent, for president in 1996 and 384,431, or 0.367 percent, in 2000. He never held elective office, Babka said.

He campaigned actively across the country, promoting the value of smaller government.

"He was gentlemanly, courteous and cultivated his personal happiness," Babka said in a telephone interview from Washington, where he is president of Downsize DC, a small government advocacy group. Browne was co-founder of the group.

Browne wrote 12 books that sold more than 2 million copies, the party said in a news release. They included "Why Government Doesn't Work," "How I Found Freedom in an Unfree World" and "Fail-Safe Investing."

In his 1970 book "How You Can Profit From the Coming Devaluation," he predicted that the dollar would be devalued and major inflation could be forthcoming.

"His contributions to the party will forever be evident," said party communications director Sam New.

Browne was born in New York City and grew up in Los Angeles.

Survivors include his wife, Pamela, and a daughter. He will be cremated, and there will be no funeral. A memorial service is being planned, Babka said.