Jul 27, 2011

VA: Libertarian Candidate for State Senate to Face of Against Careerist Republican Pol

From The Examiner:

Meeting in Waynesboro on July 23, the State Central Committee of the Libertarian Party of Virginia voted to authorize its chairman, Wilbur N. Wood of Berryville, to certify J. Todd Martinsen of Spotsylvania County as a Libertarian candidate in the election for the Virginia State Senate in the Fourth District.

Martinsen, a first-time candidate, will face off against incumbent Senator Ryan McDougle (R-4), who first won the seat in a special election called to fill the unexpired term of Bill Bolling of Hanover County, who had become Lieutenant Governor.  He was re-elected to a full term in 2007 . . .

KY: Former Chairman of Libertarian Party to Run for State Treasurer

From the Courier Journal:
Ken Moellman, a 34-year-old information-technology professional who lives in Pendleton County, says he has collected the signatures of about 7,000 registered voters in a bid to run for state treasurer. Moellman, past chairman of the Libertarian Party of Kentucky, said he is advocating elimination of the state treasurer’s post, which he called “the most useless office in state government.”

Jul 26, 2011

OR: Consider the Alternatives

From a letter to the editor of the Democrat Herald:
While they are not represented in Congress, there are about 50 third parties, last I counted, including the "Big Three": the Constitution Party, the Green Party of the United States and the Libertarian Party.
The tea party is a splinter group from the Libertarians, who have a single purpose that I find somewhat short-sighted, yet they benefit from a lot of attention.
I changed to Independent during the Clinton years; long before the Independent Party of Oregon was formed - which does not suit me at all. Instead of voting for "the lesser of two evils," I voted for the candidate that best represented my interests regardless of their chances of winning. I reasoned that at least my vote showed someone wanted an alternative. (I occasionally voted for a Republican, too).
Media companies are invested in the current political structure, and indeed they manipulate the public by what they choose to report or not.
We, the public, must inform ourselves, research the issues beyond the echoing sound bites and biased comments, and apply critical thinking and common sense. It requires listening, reading, and thoughtfulness. We needn't beat each other up to solve mutual problems and we needn't take on controversies drummed up by those who benefit by them.
Judy Hays-Eberts

Jul 25, 2011

CA: Green to Run in SF Mayoral Election

From Green Party Watch:
The Bay Area Reporter has a feature piece on Terry Baum, an out lesbian and Green who is challenging the Democratic Party status quo in San Francisco Politics by running for Mayor . . . 

AZ: Greens Organize for Tucson Mayoral Election

From the Tucson Citizen:
Meet and Greet the Green Party Primary Candidates for Mayor
Mary DeCamp and Dave Croteau
at La Indita Restaurant (Mexican/Latin American cuisine)
622 N. Fourth Ave in Tucson (north of E. 5th Street)
Every Monday at 6:30pm
If you’re a registered Green Party voter in the City of Tucson, or an Independent who registered by July 16 to vote in that primary on/before August 30, here’s your weekly chance to meet & talk with either or both Green candidates.
Previous blogs on Dave Croteau (click here) and Mary DeCamp (click here).
This is Croteau’s 3rd bid for Mayor having run before as a write-in candidate in 1999 and as the Green Party candidate in 2007, challenging Republican Mayor Bob Walkup when no Democrat ran.
DeCamp ran for the Ward 3 City Council seat two years ago in 2009 and lost to Democratic incumbent Councilwoman Karin Uhlich.
If you can’t drop by La Indita, then view these 2 Green Mayoral candidates on Friday’s KUAT Channel 6 interview: http://ondemand.azpm.org/videoshorts/watch/2011/7/22/1830-green-would-be-mayors-tout-first-primary/.

Jul 24, 2011

Tom Friedman Comes Out in Support of Americans Elect

From Tom Friedman's column in the NYT:

Thanks to a quiet political start-up that is now ready to show its hand, a viable, centrist, third presidential ticket, elected by an Internet convention, is going to emerge in 2012. I know it sounds gimmicky — an Internet convention — but an impressive group of frustrated Democrats, Republicans and independents, called Americans Elect, is really serious, and they have thought out this process well. In a few days, Americans Elect will formally submit the 1.6 million signatures it has gathered to get on the presidential ballot in California as part of its unfolding national effort to get on the ballots of all 50 states for 2012. The goal of Americans Elect is to take a presidential nominating process now monopolized by the Republican and Democratic parties, which are beholden to their special interests, and blow it wide open . . .

Jul 21, 2011

UT: Constitution Party Candidates Running for City Council

From the Constitution Party of Utah  via Third Party Politics:
I received this email with the good news that Hans Anderson is running for Orem City Council this November. Hans has been treasurer for Jim Noorlander's Congressional campaigns in the past and his father was H. Verlan Anderson who wrote some of the best books on proper principles of government.

We also have a few running for City Council in Duchesne and I am (David) running for Sandy City Council.

Hello All,

My good friend Hans Andersen (son of H. Verlan Andersen), has decided to run for Orem City Council in the election this November. He is a good, solid, patriotic man who understands limited government, liberty and the constitution . . .

TN: Green and Constitution Party File Joint Lawsuit

From Ballot Access News:
On July 19, the Green Party of Tennessee, and the Constitution Party of Tennessee, jointly filed a new lawsuit in federal court, alleging that the new ballot access law passed this year is just as unconstitutional as the old one. As reported previously, in September 2010 the old law was held unconstitutional. In response, the 2011 session of the legislature deleted the language on the petition saying the signers are members, and moved the petition deadline from March to April. The case is Green Party of Tennessee et al v Hargett, middle district, 3:11-cv-00692. Here is the complaint.

Jul 20, 2011

Socialist Candidate for President Opposes Raising Debt Ceiling, Urges Credit Counciling for White House and Congress

From DC Indymedia:
Presidential Candidate Stewart Alexander says “Working people should not fear the August 2nd deadline to raise the debt ceiling; the government will not collapse. It is time for President Obama and the professional politicians to attend credit counseling.” In 2006, then Senator Barack Obama argued and voted against raising the debt ceiling saying, “Washington is shifting the burden of bad choices today onto the backs of our children and grandchildren. America has a debt problem and a failure of leadership.”

Today, during a White House press conference on raising the debt ceiling, President Obama suggested the Democrats and Republicans in Washington are the “professional politicians” most capable of managing the nation’s debt. Now that the nation is $14.3 trillion in debt, these professional politicians will once again rescue capitalism and avert an economic crisis by creating more debt.

U.S. Presidential Candidate Stewart Alexander notes, during the past decade, many of these professional politicians have doubled the size of the U.S. government. “The two corporate parties of big capital have also quadrupled the size of government within the past 20 years through increased spending and raising the debt ceiling over and over again, creating more debt for working people.”

More than 71 percent of all Americans are opposed to raising the debt ceiling. Stewart Alexander says working people understand debt better than these professional politicians and President Obama. “This is how it is done by most working people. We calculate how much has been deposited into the checking account. We calculate how much is owed in bills, and we pay our bill keeping our check book balanced.” Alexander says when the checking account is near empty, “these professional politicians want to use the U.S. credit card to go on a spending spree.” . . .

NJ: Socialist Candidate Supports Community Garden Effort

From Red Bank Patch:

It’s official: socialists support fresh fruits and vegetables. Pat Noble, an 18-year-old Red Bank resident and member of the Socialist Party USA running for election onto the Monmouth County Board of Chosen Freeholders, has endorsed the efforts of volunteers who hope to develop a community garden on a vacant lot along the Navesink River.

Though a community garden, in theory, has found support from the borough’s council, its location remains a point of contention. Gardeners want to see the project developed on the lot just off of Front Street, citing its centralized and highly visible location as some primary reasons. Though they’ve been reluctant to provide reasons of their own, Red Bank’s council members want to see the garden developed, well, anywhere else . . .

Jul 19, 2011

TX: Libertarians Seek Ron Paul's House Seat

From Libertarian Strategy Monthly:
Within hours of Representative Ron Paul’s announcement that he will not seek re-election to Congress to focus on his bid for the Republican nomination for President, three Libertarians announced their intent to seek the Libertarian Party of Texas nomination for the seat. . . .

Libertarian Party of Texas Chair Pat Dixon said “Dr. Paul has served honorably for 12 terms as ‘the Libertarian’ representative in Congress. The Libertarian Party is proud to offer the voters of District 14 a representative in Congress who will continue to uphold the same principles to which Dr. Paul has remained committed, and that are completely absent in the Republican and Democratic parties.”

MD: Two-Party Politics Are a Joke, and the Joke is on the American People

From the Maryland Libertarian Party:
President James Madison said each generation should bear the burden of its own wars, not foist their expense off on future generations. Since Barack Obama became president, he and the Congress have been responsible for one-third of the current national debt. Record spending for entitlements, war, bailouts to banks, businesses and states have paved the way for future unfunded liabilities of up to $100 trillion. . . . Madison warned us of the need for each generation to pay its own way. If he could have envisioned the burden we are heaping on the backs of future generations, he would be appalled by the corrupt and morally decrepit actions of elected leaders at all levels of government. I know I am.

Jul 18, 2011

KY: Independents Can Make Decisions that No Party Candidate Could Make, Says Galbraith in Gov Debate

From Cincinnati.com:
Two of the three gubernatorial candidates debated in Covington Thursday afternoon, Republican State Senate President David Williams and independent candidate Gatewood Galbraith . . . 

Galbraith blamed partisan politics for Kentucky’s woes and said as an independent, he will work with both sides of the aisle. “I foresee that after my stint as governor, I’m going to be one of the most disliked people in the state because I’m going to have to make decisions that neither party candidate can possibly make, because they’ve got to answer to the party,” Galbraith said. “I don’t answer to anybody except God and an occasional judge or two.” . . .

MS: Independents Seek Gubernatorial Seat

From the Jackson Free Press:
Hoping to attract voters who are undecided in voting for Democrats or Republicans, Independent candidates Will Oatis and Bobby Kearan are looking for a piece of political action. Will Oatis, Independent

Independent candidate Will Oatis, 37, was born in raised in Silver Creek. He has a bachelor’s degree in history from the University of Southern Mississippi. He spent 20 years in the U.S. armed forces including three combat tours in Afghanistan over the span of eight years. Oatis has more than 20 military awards, including a Bronze Star, a Global War on Terror Expeditionary Medal and the Global War on Terror Service Medal.  . . . .

Reform candidate Bobby Kearan moved to Mississippi at the age of 10. He grew up in Winston County and attended Louisville High School. He is a “computer guy” who lives in Rankin County and works for a Mississippi-based financial institution. He manages its software security updates.

His campaign motto is “One of the People, for the People” and he approaches his candidacy from the perspective of a working man.

Kearan, 39, supports cuts that would leave a smaller, more efficient government, and state payroll reductions more aligned with the state’s median income.

NYC: Socialist Workers Party Scramble to Submit Petition in House Race

From Ballot Access News:
On July 13, the Socialist Workers Party submitted 7,080 signatures to place its nominee for U.S. House on the ballot in New York’s special election set for September 13. No other group or independent candidate submitted a petition. The law requires 3,500 for independent candidates, or the nominees of unqualified parties, for U.S. House, and the law does not reduce this number when the petitioning period is short (as it almost always is, in special elections).
The SWP collected these signatures in only four days. The only other candidates on the ballot will be the Democrat and the Republican, unless the Green Party exercises its right to nominate someone without a petition (the Green Party is a qualified party in New York, so it has this option).

Jul 17, 2011

IA: Independents Outnumber Democrats, Republicans

From the Chicago Tribune, via the Hankster:
Senate Majority Leader Michael Gronstal, D-Council Bluffs, said Iowa voters have long shown a preference for a divided government that gives both parties a say in running the state, and he expects that to continue.

"I think when it's all said and done, it's up to the independent voters," Gronstal said. "They've often said it's good to have divided government."

Registered Democrats outnumber Republicans in Iowa by about 646,000 to 610,000, but there are more independent voters than members of either party: nearly 702,000.

Anonymous and the Greens

The Greens appear to be reaching out to Anonymous, or is it the other way around?  Or is it just plain satire?  From the Seattle PI Ethicist blog:
We don’t need a “new” party, we need to vote for a party that already exists and represents us. Vote Green. The Green party is in 49 states. Anonymous should vote Green. If you like Anon, you should vote Green. If you want a transparent government, Vote Green.
Do you like torture? Go on and vote Democrat.
Do you like being broke? Vote Republican.
Do you want to work at Walmart when you retire? Vote Democrat.
Do you want to see your children working as slaves? Vote Republican.
Do you hate having health care? Vote Democrat.
Do you love chaos and anarchy? Vote Republican.
It doesn’t really matter whether its Dem, or Rep, they’re two sides of the same coin: Corruption.
The Green party will ban lobbying INSIDE government offices. The Green party will make it illegal to vote on any issue for which large donations were paid, or to submit laws written by lobbyists.  Do you want GOVERNMENT, or this Fourth-Reich divine right insanity? America is already a Tyranny, already Fascist, already over the edge. It’s time to change. Obama had his chance and failed miserably. He extended the Patriot Act. he allows torture, and rendition. Look at how he treats Manning. Look at how he plots against Assange. Someone told the truth? How evil of them.
This ad paid for by Anon

MN: Ranked Choice Gives Greens a Boost

From Twin Cities:
In November, voters in the St. Paul City Council election will be able to choose up to six candidates per seat, ranked in order of preference. In other words, downtown residents could conceivably vote for all five candidates who have filed to run for office in Ward 2.
Nov. 8 will mark the city's first experience with the new "ranked voting" system, otherwise known as "instant run-off voting" or "ranked-choice voting," which was supported by voters in a ballot question last year. . .  
Jim Ivey, former political chair for the Green Party of Minnesota, said ranked-choice voting has boosted his party's chances at the polls. He thinks the Green Party will no longer be looked upon as a potential "spoiler" in tight races.
"We worked for years to make this happen," said Ivey, a Lowertown resident who is running for city council in Ward 2. "The Green Party was a key supporter. It's strategic for creating a third-party presence in local politics. It gives people a chance to vote for what they really believe in, and know that there's no risk in doing that....It's great for us."
It's been such a draw, in fact, that the party has recruited a slate of local candidates, some of whom have no previous Green Party affiliation but share the party's "progressive" values, Ivey said.

Jul 16, 2011

Dullard Mush (The Anon Guy) fails to smear Nevada's largest third-party

It is unsurprising that Nevada's largest & most organized third party, the Independent American Party, has had its fair share of critics and even enemies, especially those that throw around inaccurate, and even simpleton-minded condemnation of the IAP and its members. 
With a political group as battle-hardened, and yet as modestly successful in state and local politics as the IAP is- people in both high and low places of society, as well as being of, or not of, our state government, are always seeking to throw any kind of monkey-wrench into the works.
Dullard Mush, a blog that a run by a Nevada blogger known as 'The Anon Guy', whom in addition, runs another blog that constantly features Pro-Barack Obama campaign emails is no exception in his constant criticism of the IAP over various petty matters, such as voter registration and the Party's name, campaigning, etc.
However such smear tactics haven't gone entirely unnoticed in their ad hominem inaccuracy and factual distortion, even if they do go unnoticed by the media and public attention, nevertheless.

Examples of Anon's attack pieces would include:

* A subliminal attack on the IAP's former congressional candidate, Russell Best, suggesting that he accidentally filed for US senate when in fact the Secretary of State's office had inaccuracy reported on their website that he was running for US Senate, when Tim Fasano was yet the official IAP Senate candidate that was supposed to be listed on that website instead.
Anon did not do a follow up on the matter, which isn't surprising.

* A petty and inaccurate article that bashed the IAP voter registration gains throughout the years. Anon didn't pay attention to the fact that while the IAP has been balloted qualified since 1992, its numbers didn't start to grow until after 2001, which is quite odd because- if Anon is right that the solid majority of Nevadans only register IAP simply for the name -then why didn't the IAP explode in voter registration numbers during the 90's? Why were there only 15,462 registered IAP'ers, in Nevada as of January of 2001, which made up barely 2% of the state's voter registration total then?
It is noted that when the IAP became more active in the political scene in Nevada around 2002 with increased efforts of activism and media coverage, the Party's numbers then began to skyrocket.
Anon also failed to note that in terms of the percentages in each county's voter registration totals, the IAP is larger in the rural and more conservative parts of the state, where the voters would be more the wiser to know just what political party they are registering to, and where not only would such voters be sympathetic to the IAP's message, but even vote for IAP candidates in high percentages, as well as electing a few to office too. Another thing, the majority of the Party's voters may lie in Clark County, which is likewise for all political parties in Nevada, but in Esmeralda County alone, while IAP may only have 47 registered voters there, Esmeralda has a total of 562 registered voters, according the June 2011 totals. So over 8% of the voting population in Esmeralda is IAP, which is very good for a third party!
With this one county being just one example out of many here, yet Esmeralda has also seen high vote percentages for IAP candidates and even saw the 2010 election of one into local office there. 
Once more, Anon's arguments began to break down.
Anon also tried using even more petty comparisons in the same article when it came to IAP candidates and the numbers; trying to use a long-refuted argument of how the majority of IAP voters fail to come out to vote for the Party's candidates for major offices. Yet Anon takes on his true anti-third party mentality here when he forgets that it is a common habit of the typical American voter to be more likely to stick to the status-quo on voting for majority-party candidates for such high-profile races that voters would be the most passionate about; while on the other hand, when it comes to state office, and other elected offices that aren't as extensively covered by the media or conspicuous to the general public, then will the status-quo bend, or even get broken, and third party candidates will do much better in these races in comparison to the higher offices; this fact is true for all third parties, including the LP, the IAP, the Greens, etc.
And need I say, there's also the factor of just how hard, or how little, such third party candidates for major & minor offices campaign for votes; that is another thing to consider on the vote totals.
When Anon gets down to the congressional offices, he still continues the distortion, failing to note the IAP's spike in numbers that their candidates receive; pointing instead to how the LP candidates, or rival candidates of other third parties get better percentages when compared to the number of their party's registered voters in their district or area. However, the math he uses is quite interesting and even more over-exaggerated; for example, if 'Candidate A' is a member of a party that has a total of 200 registered voters in his District and he gets 400 votes in a race, then he has gotten 100% more votes then there are registered voters of his party in that District. Then there's 'Candidate B', who is a member of a party that has a total of 1000 registered voters in the same District, and in the same race, gets 1,500 votes, or 50% more then the number of registered voters in his party. 
And according to Anon's logic; 'Candidate A' performed way better then 'Candidate B', because he got a better percentage of votes when compared to the number of registered voters of his party in his District.
-Such logic would make sense in a Leslie Nielsen movie.
Anon did his best to try making the Nevada LP look good in comparison to the IAP, yet he still fails when confronted with the facts, numbers, and logic; especially when several IAP candidates that ran for state offices in 2006, and in 2010, actually proved wrong his arguments about the percentage of IAP voters voting for, or not voting for, the IAP line; these examples are- Janine Hansen running for Secretary of State in 2006 and her brother Joel, who ran for State Attorney General in 2010; both won more votes then the number of IAP registered voters in Nevada at the time...
And if we stick to Anon's own logic, we are talking about only the Active Voters here.
Another argument that he makes, which also has been turned upside down, is the partially-accurate fact that IAP candidates do exceptionally well in races where they are running against a sole Republican, or Democratic candidate, because it is simply between two candidates only in that race. This argument may be true indeed, but he also forgets that while any kind of third party candidate can do well in two-way races, there are also several exceptions where IAP candidates have placed Second, or even won partisan office in races where the IAP candidate was up against more then one opponent. Such examples would be Jackie Berg's 2006 race for Eureka County Clerk, John Lampros's 2010 race for White Pine County Commission Board, Arthur Wehrmeister's 2010 race for Esmeralda County District Attorney, and Janine Hansen's 2010 race for State Assembly District 33, where she won Second place over her Democratic opponent.
Again, when confronted with such facts and results, Anon's arguments continue to fall flat and into the dark crevices when first seeing the real light of day.

* His attack on the IAP in this piece, which he defended Scott Ashjian, the "Tea Party of Nevada" candidate for US Senate last year. Yet Scott was exposed as a crooked businessman with serious legal and financial issues under his belt, as well as being a possible political operative that violated NRS.293.184 by lying on his candidate paperwork. Many of the Tea Party groups in Nevada also denounced Ashjian's candidacy, stating that he never was involved with them or even participated in their rallies, unlike the IAP, which has been working closely with the movement in Nevada since 2009. Ashjian basically ran as a candidate of a fake political party, whose leaders and officers were not only family and business associates of him, but included several outspoken Democrats, including Barry Levinson, who served as the Secretary for the TPN.
As Ashjian failed to garner enough votes to on election day to qualify his 'political party' for the Nevada ballot in 2012, he soon dropped out of the public eye and has been maintaining a low profile since, except for still fighting against a few legal charges that won't go away. 
Yet Anon's silly calls of hypocracy on the IAP's joint-lawsuit with the Tea Party movement fall on deaf ears, as many third party activists in Nevada, including Debra Dedmon- a officer with the Clark County Libertarian Party and a online blogger who as goes by the name 'LibertarianGirl' -denounced Ashjian's candidacy as a fake third-party candidate.
Anon Guy's criticism fails, yet again.

* Anon claimed in another article that IAP'er Ike Yochum's 2010 candidacy in the State Senate, Washoe District 1 race would help out Ty Cobb in his battle against fellow Republican Ben Kieckhefer, when Ty Cobb went on to lose the GOP Primary against Kieckhefer. While this piece wasn't critical of anything Independent American, his stereotypical prediction of that race was as accurate as his facts are on the IAP itself.

As much as he has gone out of the way to bash the IAP and anything related to it, the main fact that very few Nevadans pay attention to a petty and spiteful anti-third party blogger such as him, and even those that do and also take the time to research his claims, like this writer has, rings true. Especially when taking notes of his friendly twitter correspondence with Nevada's Secretary of State, Ross Miller, whom has been hostile to political third parties in the state and even crafted legislation (A.B. 81 & A.B. 82), that would have greatly hurt Nevada third party candidates during the last session. And if not for the efforts of the citizen lobbyists of the IAP, the NVLP, and others, then such bills wouldn't have been watered down and stripped of the harmful language that was contained in them at the time.

As always, there is nothing new under the sun when it comes to the conga line of anti-Independent American bleaters and screechers that yet miss the mark. 'The Anon Guy' is no exception, and neither is his ignorant and simpleton prejudice.

Jul 15, 2011

IN: 20% of Hoosiers no Longer "Lean" Toward the Republican or Democratic Parties

From the Indiana Chamber of Commerce Business Blog, via The Hankster:
More and more Hoosiers consider themselves true “independents,” casting aside any political identification with either Republicans or Democrats.  Twenty percent (20%) of Indiana voters today identify themselves as “independent,” even after factoring out those who self-identify as leaning to one party or the other. This is a 150% increase in true independent voters in just the last six years.

PA: Local Push for Independent Judges and a More Diverse Bench

From the Standard Speaker:
Denouncing the Luzerne County court system for a "horrifying" lack of diversity, attorney and activist Harry Hamilton said Thursday he would circulate nominating petitions for a potential independent run for judge.

"I can't talk about change, I can't talk about bringing color to the courthouse and not recognize or realize that I'm a qualified judicial candidate, if nominated," Hamilton said, after addressing about a group of two-dozen supporters in the courthouse rotunda . . .

Hamilton, 49, said he must collect about 800 signatures by an Aug. 1 deadline in order to secure a position in the Nov. 8 general election. If he runs, he would join seven other candidates vying for six open seats, including five nominated on both the Democratic and Republican ballots. Hamilton said he considered running in the May primary, but wanted to divorce himself from the partisanship of the two-party system.

"In order to remove the taint, if you will, a judicial candidate should be independent of a particular party," Hamilton said. "I had to set aside the rhetoric, if you will, of what might be the best party to run with and for because I believe firmly that, when it comes to judicial office, you should be independent." . . .

The Real Deficit: Leadership

From the Reform Party of Utah:
Reform Party national chairman David Collison called the debate between Democrats and Republicans on raising the nation’s debt ceiling another reminder that the country is faced with a deficit in leadership on the most critical economic issues.
“The Democrats and Republicans continue to prove to the American people that they are incapable of addressing the $14 trillion debt they created,” said Collison. “This is a debt that has grown by over $10 trillion in less than 20 years, and neither party has a plan to make it stop. Well, it needs to stop. We cannot afford to keep raising the debt ceiling and sacrifice the future of our children and their children.”
Collison added that the Reform Party believes that the American economy cannot withstand the poor leadership of the Democratic and Republican parties any longer. “The only way America will balance our budget and end our out of control debt to China, once and for all, is through shared sacrifice by ALL Americans, an end to corporate welfare, serious across the board spending cuts and elimination of special interest budget projects, along with addressing serious structural economic issues in America.”
Collison noted that none of the current proposals by either side would do anything to keep the national debt from reaching $20 trillion in less than ten years and will not keep debt payments under $800 billion in the same time frame. Current government projections have payments on the national debt approaching 80 percent of all revenues in the coming years, which will make funding the nation’s military, social security and other key programs impossible . . .

Jul 13, 2011

Janine Hansen reports on her, the IAP, and the legislative successes made this year in Nevada

Nevada Families Eagle Forum's final Nevada Legislative Report


One of our most important victories was the defeat of SB552 which provided for the taking of DNA upon Arrest instead of conviction. This bill was a serious departure from our Constitutional protection of innocent until proven guilty. In considering this legislation the question must be asked: Do you want Obama to have your DNA? Section 3 sub 4 of the AB552 stated, “The identification characteristics resulting from the genetic marker analysis must be stored and maintained by the forensic laboratory in CODIS.” CODIS is the FBI’s Combined DNA Index System.
If you have been arrested for a felony but not convicted, even if you are innocent, your DNA remains in the federal database system. This is because a State has no right and no power to demand that a citizen’s DNA be removed from the FBI’s database CODIS. Placing innocent people’s DNA in a federal database crosses the line and turns the database into a tool for surveillance instead of a tool for investigating crimes. DNA is not like a fingerprint. It is an individual’s entire genetic blueprint. In Nevada , felonies include such things as writing a bad check, unlawful interception of cable TV service, and dozens of other non-violent crimes.
Some might say, I have done nothing wrong so I have no need to worry. I was arrested for petitioning! Do you trust the government? Our state and local law enforcement have become co-opted agents of the federal government through federal grants of dollars, mandates, and cooperative agreements.
Have you seen the Federal Homeland Security Department’s Report on Domestic Terrorists? According to Homeland Security, if you are pro-life, pro-gun, pro-family, a Christian, opposed to illegal immigration, opposed to NAFTA, GATT, WTO, believe in end-times prophecy, a returning Veteran, or store food, you are a potential Domestic Terrorist!

AB552: was called the “Briana Dennison Bill”. Because of her tragic rape and murder, some feel that it might have been prevented if we had a law requiring DNA specimen collection upon arrest. We completely empathize with her family and friends, fully understanding that it could have been our daughter or granddaughter who was brutally victimized. However, high profile cases are often used to change our laws and undermine our liberties while playing on our sympathies.
However, as mothers and fathers we must consider all of our children and their futures. Securing and maintaining their possible immediate safety without considering the potential threat to their liberty would be shortsighted. We cannot allow our children’s Constitutional rights to be diminished because of such a tragedy. Indeed, the greater tragedy would be the loss of our Constitutional rights and protections making us all potential victims of an abusive government. Our founders understood this because they became in their fight for liberty and Independence outlaws, enemies of the King, felons, and domestic colonial terrorists. This bill passed the Assembly. However, Senator Horsford, Chairman of Senate Finance made the courageous decision not to take a vote on AB552 and let it die. He said there were too many unanswered questions about expungement/removal of the DNA from the federal database. He said it was too late in the session (on the last day) to consider such a far reaching issue without adequate time.
I believe that Americans have been artificially divided. Often during the Legislative session we have the opportunity to work with people and organizations we might often otherwise oppose like the ACLU. This is always a rewarding and positive experience as we learn to put down our preconceived ideas and reach out to find common ground as Americans who believe in liberty and agree on a particular issue. Such was the opportunity on this bill.
Other Legislative Victories

SB546: Early Childhood Education was an attempt to take over the child care businesses in our state and impose expensive new training and curriculum requirements. Instead of parents choosing the child care that is best for their children, the bill mandated a curriculum created by the failing education establishment. The provisions of this bill needed to be read in light of the left leaning NEA National Education Association’s goal which calls for “early childhood education programs…from birth through age eight. This bill was an important step towards that NEA goal of a Nanny State controlling our babies and preschool children. We can see the failures of the State/Federally controlled government education system which produces too many children who cannot read or think, and who know little or nothing of their own heritage, the Constitution and liberty. The Governor vetoed the bill.

SB133: the People’s Right to Petition escaped further decimation when Senator Rhoads’ bill, originally designating “petition districts” as the 42 Assembly Districts, could not meet Constitutional muster. It made petitioning so burdensome as to be virtually impossible. SB133 was amended to make petition districts the same as Congressional Districts which is a very reasonable requirement. In addition, there was a final attempt to torpedo the right to petition when a provision was added to the bill by the Assembly Elections Committee which would have required anyone hired to petition to be treated as an employee with all the taxes, insurance, and regulations of a regular employee instead of the usual contract worker. This would have killed petitioning. It’s startling how arrogantly and antagonistically the Legislature works every session to further annihilate the people’s right to petition. The unions helped us on this one. Often the Legislative process creates interesting coalitions through mutual concern over a specific issue. This greatly increases the opportunity for success when diverse organizations can come together to defend Constitutional Rights.

AB299: Low cost taxpayer subsidized auto insurance available for up to 50% of people in Washoe and Clark counties. This was a Great Victory on a bad bill. It passed the Assembly on a 29 to 13 vote. It passed the Senate Commerce, Labor & Energy Committee, but never received a vote in the full Senate, probably because they didn’t have the votes. We don’t need more Government entitlements!

SB64: State Treasurer’s discriminatory State Stimulus. This bill allowed the State Treasurer to deposit $20,000,000 million into banks and credit unions at 2% below market and then the banks would loan the money out giving preference to “politically correct” businesses run by women, minorities and veterans. Good old reverse discrimination at its’ finest. Additionally, this bill circumvented the Nevada State Constitution which prohibits the state from loaning any money to corporations. The Constitution states in Article 8, Section 9: “Gifts or loans of public money to certain corporations prohibited. The State shall not donate or loan money, or its credit, subscribe to or be, interested in the Stock of any company, association, or corporation, except corporations formed for educational or charitable purposes.” Oh that pesky Constitution always standing in the way of new liberal projects to use the taxpayers’ money! The bill died a quiet death in Senate Legislative Operations and Elections.

SB269: “Write in” Voting would have allowed a candidate to lose in the Primary Election and file as a write in candidate in the General. In Alaska in 2010, liberal establishment Republican incumbent Senator Lisa Murkowski was defeated in the Primary in an upset by Conservative Joe Miller. Lisa Murkowski then became a “write in” candidate for the general election. Because she could now draw voters from both liberal Democrats and RINO Republicans, Murkowski just barely beat Joe Miller and was elected. “Write in” candidates will result in the defeat of Conservative Constitutional candidates and was soundly defeated with all Senators voting No except the sponsor of the bill Senator Joe Hardy.

AB289: Dietetics licensing bill, which was amended to apply only to dietitians, removed concerns of alternative health providers and suppliers, which had originally opposed the bill.

SB412: the regulation of complementary integrative medicine was amended to address the legitimate concerns of alternative health providers who had energetically opposed it. In the end the bill was withdrawn. 

AB452: provided for the option of swearing an oath under God or affirming under penalty of perjury on campaign reporting laws. This was a personal victory for me as I have worked to provide this option for years since I received a $15,000 fine for swearing in the name of Jesus Christ that my report was true and correct rather than under the secular affirmation of penalty of perjury. Would you call the fine religious persecution?

Victories Continued...

AJR 2: Annual Legislative Sessions was stopped however Interim Legislative hearings are scheduled on the bill. In the future the way to stop the continual Legislative drum beat for annual sessions is to cut the number of bills introduced at the Legislature in half. It is insanity to believe that we need 1,318 bills every session.

AB578: Was an attempt to have the Legislature in Session Year Round. It was sponsored by the Democrats. It changed the Legislative Interim Committee structure to put all members of the Legislature on Interim Committees and form nine Standing Committees just like they have during the Session. Each committee could have 10 bill drafts prepared for introduction during the session. It was designed to greatly expand the Legislature’s work and per diem pay during the Interim. Bad News… It passed the Senate 11 to 10 with all Republicans voting No and the Assembly 28 to 14 with 2 RINOS Lynn Stewart and Pat Hickey voting Yes. There’s no end to the voracious appetite of the government expansion crowd cooking up tempting schemes for more and more and more and more government. Thankfully, the Governor vetoed the bill.

AB243: Requiring reporting and accountability by Quasi-Public organizations, in other words, “private,” non-profit organizations who receive State Government money through grants, contracts or other means. Believe me there are far more than you think. They must provide reports to the Legislature and make certain information available on their websites. This bill is long overdue. It received unanimous approval in both the Assembly and Senate. The Sponsor was Democrat Assemblywoman Kirkpatrick.

SB271: Imposes conditions upon Nevada ’s continued participation in Tahoe Regional Planning Agency.
Although this bill was watered down and deadlines extended for possible withdrawal, its passage is a step in the right direction to bring the TRPA, a bi-state agency, under control. The TRPA has been highly controversial because of decisions on private property. The TRPA regulations go far beyond environmental protection and violate the Takings Clause of the U.S. Constitution. TRPA assumed taxing powers of Tahoe property owners as an appointed agency with quasi-federal powers and no accountability to the taxpayers. California style environmental extremism has led to incomprehensible decisions prohibiting the cutting of dead and dying trees in the basin, creating potential environmental calamity from fires. In June 2007, the Angora wildfire burned 3,100 acres and destroyed 254 residences and many other structures in South Lake Tahoe . Developers’ rights groups and local real estate lobbyists immediately charged that the structures burned because of TRPA’s strict environmental regulations, which allegedly prohibit property owners from clearing defensible space around their homes. It’s time return to sanity and protect Nevada citizens in the Tahoe basin.

SB385: granted more power to County Commissions and City Councils. It died a quiet death in the Assembly Government Affairs Committee. Under current state law, Counties and Cities can only do what is authorized by the State Legislature as a check and balance on local governments. We believe in local government, however, local special interests can unduly influence local governments. For instance, government worker unions have much more influence on the local level in getting much higher wages than from the State, as clearly shown by the Nevada Policy Research Institute’s “Nevada Piglet Book 2010”.
The bill provided that a board of county commissioners or an incorporated city “may exercise any power it has to the extent that the power is not expressly: Denied by the Constitution” of the State of Nevada , the U.S. Constitution, by the laws of the State of Nevada or granted to another entity. This bill violates the Ninth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution and its companion in the Declaration of Rights in the Nevada Constitution Art. 1 Section 20 which states, ”This enumeration of rights shall not be construed to impair or deny others retained by the people.” We have many more rights than those specifically/expressly mentioned in the Bill of Rights or in the Nevada Declaration of Rights. 
This bill would allow local governments to pass local ordinances which could violate these real but not expressly identified rights. Then there is an arrogant provision in the bill which states, “Any doubt as to the existence of a power of [a county commission or city council] must be resolved in favor of its existence.” In other words, if you challenge it, the resolution (in court) must be decided in favor of the local government! Amazing arrogance!

AB78: Secretary of State Ross Miller’s bill which raised fees on Small Home Based businesses by $260% died in Senate.

Gun Rights/Concealed Carry Bills: Tremendous progress was made on improving the Gun Rights.

SB126: Provided for CCW holders to qualify on one semi-automated and then be able to carry any semi-automatic as the law now provides for qualification on any revolver. Sponsored by Senators Settelmeyer & Lee. Vote: Senate 21 Yeas 0 Nays, Assembly 40 Yeas 2. Nays (Maggie Carlton and Peggy Pierce).
Gun Rights Continued:

AB143: Same provisions as SB126 but was sponsored by Assemblyman Bobzien. Vote: Senate 21 Yeas 0 Nays, Assembly 39 Yeas 3 Nays (Maggie Carlton, Harvey Munford and Peggy Pierce).

AB282: Speaker Oceguera’s bill lifted ideas from other Legislators including Goedhart and Hickey and put them all in his bill. It incorporated the important provision for renewal of CCW permits to require an investigation by the sheriff and a report from National Instant Criminal Background Check System. This put Nevada ’s CCW law in compliance with federal law, so permittees do not have to undergo a Brady background check every time they buy a weapon. It also included the same provisions as SB126 and AB143 for semi-autos. It took the idea of Senator Gustavson’s bill SB175 to protect the confidentiality of CCW holders. After much ado between the Senate and Assembly it limited the fees for the permits to actual costs for background/ criminal history checks so that they could not be used for revenueing. And finally, it prevents the administrator of State Parks from adopting regulations in State Parks or recreation facilities which are more restrictive than the laws of the state regarding possession of firearms and engaging in lawful resistance against an offense of person or property. Passed the Assembly 40 to 2 with same 2 no votes and Senate 21 to 0.

SB175: Gustavson’s Confidentiality for identity of CCW holders passed Senate and did not receive a vote in the Assembly. SB231 Lee’s Campus Carry passed Senate but no vote was taken in Assembly Judiciary.

Bad Bills that passed:

AJR5: Allowing the Legislature to call special sessions under limited circumstances, which already passed last session and so it will be on the November 2012 ballot. Currently, only the Governor has the power to call the Legislature into Special Session.

AB81 & AB82: the Secretary of State’s Anti-Democratic Election Suppression bills were significantly amended with the most egregious portions amended out of the bills. However, SB81 still contains repressive regulations on election speech and elicited NO votes from all 10 Senate Republicans. Amended out of AB81 in the Assembly was the section which increased the filing fees for candidates running for election in some cases by 600%, increasing filing for US Senate from $500 to $3000. The Secretary of State, Ross Miller, felt that only “credible” candidates should be able to run for office. That would have left only the incumbents and “anointed” candidates, chosen by the “powers that be,” able to run for office. Ross Miller’s record as Secretary of State is frightening as exemplified in his election bills which are anti-democratic, anti-participation, and anti-free speech. Now that’s some record for the State’s Chief Election Officer. It may give you reason to pause and understand why I called these bills the SOS’s Anti-Democratic Election Suppression Bills.

SB43: Electronic Health Records is getting us all ready for ObamaCare. It was “mandated” and “funded” by Congress in the so-called Federal Stimulus Act of 2009. It will force you into a system where all of your personal health records will be electronic, making them more vulnerable to identity theft. But more importantly, this personal critical and potentially damaging physical and mental health information can be more easily accessed, misused, and abused by those who gain access legally or illegally. Do you trust the government with your health records? We have recently seen examples of how “safe” electronic data is when the Pentagon and big corporations are hacked. 

SJR 14: Intermediate Appellant Court passed the Senate 16 to 5 with 5 Senators having the courage to vote NO: Cegavske, Gustavson, Halseth, Kieckhefer, Settelmeyer. It will have to be voted on again in 2013 and then if it passes it will go on the ballot in 2014. This was just defeated by the people in the 2010 election. I guess they weren’t listening! No Surprise…

Died at end of Legislature: SB177: Motorcycle Helmet Freedom bill passed the Senate Transportation Committee with Chairman Breedan begrudgingly taking a vote. It was then sent to Senate Finance with a phony fiscal note where Senator Horsford let it die. Freedom is rarely to be gained in the Legislative halls bent on more government control. 

These bills DIED at the April 15, 2011 deadline:

AB34: Allowed the cops to use cameras for giving traffic tickets. This is a short stop on the way to Great Britain which has more than 4.2 million spy cameras filming each citizen over 300 times a day. Hello Orwell!

AB54: Gave unelected appointed people the power to impose taxes in “medical districts”. The concept of unelected unaccountable people raising taxes really seems to fly in the face of that somewhat quaint idea, “No taxation without representation.” I’m glad we didn’t have to start a revolution over that one! 

AB108: Allowed people to register to vote on Election Day. Nobody was ready for such a radical step and there were great concerns over potential fraud, which were not addressed in the bill. You can bet it will be back next session.

AB208, AB430, AB435, SB161 SB178, SB380: All good bills providing needed steps to address illegal immigration and/or making English the official language. No surprise in the Democrat controlled Legislature they went no where.

AB314: “Comprehensive sex education” was sponsored by the infamous Planned Parenthood, the number one abortion providers in the nation. It provided for instruction on sexual perversions, abortion, graphic and explicit instructions on how to use contraceptives without parental consent.

AB336: Income tax on business in Nevada was just one more way to suppress businesses and jobs.

SB235: Made not wearing a Seat Belt a primary offense so that you could be stopped at any time for any reason. This was another surveillance society bill which didn’t make it.

SB247: School Based Health Clinics taking away parental consent and providing contraceptives and abortion referrals bit the dust.

SB310/AB411: the Freedom of Choice in Health Care insuring the right of individuals to choose their own health care in “the land of the free and the home of the brave,” died quiet deaths providing us no protections against the ominous ObamaCare mandates.

SB344: National Popular Vote would have circumvented the U.S. Constitution and the Electoral College allowing big population states to completely control the Presidential election. It was perhaps the most dangerous bill of the session. Eagle Forum made it a top priority and with public support stopped this bill cold.

SB366, SJR10, AJR8 and AB367: School choice. The government schools have failed our children. Its time to explore and return to education that works for children, parents and good teachers. We need to provide successful options in education so that our children can be rescued from the stranglehold of the Teachers Union and Educrats. The Governor proposed school choice based on Florida ’s successful system. Of course, something so successful was too much for the Dems to shallow. It died.

AB462: Redefined “terrorism” as including the “use or attempted use…of coercion…to influence the policy of a governmental entity.” Isn’t that what active citizens and lobbyist do everyday at the Legislature? Are we all potential domestic terrorists? According to Homeland Security that may be true. The new definition did not fly.

SJR6 & AJR4: Tenth Amendment Resolutions would have taken us a long way towards reestablishing state sovereignty in our ongoing battle with the Feds. Why would Nevada’s Legislators, burdened with horrendous unfunded federal mandates and unconstitutional programs, straining to pay the bills with only 13% of Nevada’s lands taxable to the state (the rest under usurped control by the feds) want to reaffirm the Tenth Amendment? A sacrilege for sure to the left wing orthodoxy dedicated to continual violation of the U.S. Constitution!
The Tenth Amendment is the key to restoring our liberties. The Tenth Amendment states, “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people. Those few words are very threatening to the power hungry…they mean there are limits on what the federal government can do and what they can mandate the states to do.

SJR7: A constitutional amendment to limit property taxes was a good idea which went no where.

Legislature and Governor Reneged on Promises to Sunset Taxes

The Governor and the Legislature reneged on their promises and voted to pass AB561 to extend the tax on wages paid by businesses. This tax suppresses job creation and flies in the face of the stated goals of the Governor and Legislators of creating jobs. The repeal of these sunsets will take another $600 million out of the productive sector during these devastating economic times and give it to the non-producing insatiable tax eaters! 
Of course, all the Democrats voted to repeal the taxes scheduled to be sunsetted, but once again the Republicans betrayed the people, for without their capitulation the taxes would not have passed. Only six Senators and six Assemblymen had the courage to vote NO including Senators Brower, Cegavske, Gustavson, Halseth, Roberson, and Settelmeyer and Assemblymen Ellison, Goedhart, Hambrick, Hardy, Livermore, and McArthur.

Recently, someone in the Nevada Unemployment bureaucracy revealed that although the federal government claims that the unemployment rate in Nevada is 12.1%, the real rate is nearly twice that at 23%!!! The reason is- many people have been dropped off unemployment rolls when their benefits run out and are not counted. They are now “invisible” to the Federal government for deception’s sake.

Remember, there is never enough money for the government growers. 

-Janine Hansen, Nevada Eagle Forum President & IAP Executive Director

VT: Independent Challenges Unfair Petition Deadlines

From the Burlington Free Press:
Jerry Trudell of West Charleston will be in Washington Superior Court Thursday morning for the first of two days of his civil challenge of the new Vermont law governing when independent candidates must file petitions to be on the ballot.
The Legislature moved the date from September to June so that all potential candidates filed at the same time. In the past, independents and minor party candidates filed after the party primaries in September.

Jul 12, 2011

OH: State Legislature Wages "Attack on Democracy" Say Greens

From the Cincinnati Beacon:
This past week, according to the Green Party of Ohio, the State Senate passed a revision of Ohio’s election law that is nothing less than an attack on Democracy itself. “It’s highly ironic that on the Fourth of July, when we are supposed to be celebrating our political freedoms, the Legislature has passed a law that effectively eliminates our ability to peacefully assemble as a political party,” said Dennis Spisak. Spisak was the Green’s gubernatorial candidate in 2010. He established the Party’s current legal standing by receiving more than 50,000 votes.

HB 194 requires Parties to receive at least 5% of the vote for either Governor or President in order to maintain their status as a political party. This means that the Greens would have to receive approximately 200,000 votes. However, since they may have lost their status before the election in 2012, they would have to do so without the ability to raise money, name candidates, hold primaries, or establish membership.

Jul 11, 2011

Could the National Centrist Party Co-opt Strategic Election Reform?

I'm in email dialogue with one of the National Centrist Party founders and hope to persuade him and them to major on strategic election reform that achieves a dynamic centrism by handicapping the cut-throat rivalry between the two major parties and enables more folks, via third parties, to influence the working center of the US's politics.


OK: Libertarian Ballot Access Push

From the Edmond Sun:
Oklahoma Libertarians want their party recognized by the state and represented on the ballot in political primary elections, one local Libertarian leader said.

Oklahoma is the only state recognizing only the Democrat and Republican parties on the ballot without an “unfair” effort required by a third party, said Aletha Lingo, president of the Edmond Libertarian Party. Democrats and Republicans don’t have to collect signatures for ballot representation.

“It’s insane, unfair and to me unconstitutional and ridiculous that we have to go to other Libertarians outside the state to raise money to get on this ballot one time,” Lingo said . . .

IN: Libertarian City-Councile Ed Coleman

From Libertarian Indianapolis City-County Councilor Ed Coleman via the LP blog:
Ed Coleman was first elected to the Indianapolis City County Council in 2007 and is determined to continue working for the citizens of Indianapolis.

Councilor Coleman is a health care professional and works for a subsidiary of Wellpoint in Indianapolis.  He and his wife Kerri are proud parents of two children and reside on the Southside of Indianapolis.  Ed was honorably discharged following 3 years of service in the United States Navy.  Ed spent his 3 years with HS-4 helicopter squadron attached to the USS Carl Vinson doing a 6 month deployment to the Persian Gulf.  Then briefly with the USS Abraham Lincoln.  He then spent 9 years in the Indiana Army National Guard were he was activated in support of training troops for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.  He also was honored for state emergency service on 3 seperate occasions.  He is an Indianapolis native, graduating from Warren Central and Ivy Tech . . .

Jul 8, 2011

The Importance of Information Sharing

From the Constitution Party's discussion forum:
Why does the national Party not share membership info with State Chapters?
We have found folks in Alabama that have been members of National for years in districts we have run candidates. However we never knew that they were out there. The last one we found was one that has really bugged me as he was my wife's uncle. Bill was in House district 105 but we did not know that and we did not know he was even interested in being a part of the CP as a result he never really got plugged into that campaign. We only lost that race by 275 votes and I have to wonder just how much Bill would and could have helped us in that Campaign had we connected DURING the campaign and not afterward?? 
Why does national refuse to share info on all contacts and members with the leadership of CP State chapters?? This hinders our efforts in increasing membership. Why does national absolutely refuse to share the names of all donors from within a State with leadership of that State's CP chapter? This hinders our efforts in fundraising. 
Richard Rutledge
Constitution Party of Alabama Vice Chairman.

ID: Constitution Party Protests Hindu Statue

From Boise Weekly:
Travel to Idaho's panhandle this weekend and you might pass a unique statue at the corner Sherman Avenue and Sixth Street in Coeur d'Alene. It's part of the city's ArtCurrents, a new art-on-loan program. The six-foot-tall statue is of the Hindu god Ganesha, with four arms and an elephant's head. But the Kootenai County Constitution Party is not happy, saying, "Christians of Kootenai County should be dismayed at the appearance of a Hindu demon." An official with the national office of the Constitution Party had no knowledge of the protest . . .

Jul 7, 2011

LA: Gov Jindal Vetoes Bill that Would Allow Independents to Call themselves Independents

The GOP's opposition to freedom of speech is in full view in Louisiana.  From Ballot Access News:
On July 1, Louisiana Goveror Bobby Jindal vetoed HB 533, an omnibus election law bill, entirely because one small part of the bill lets independent candidates have “independent” as their ballot label. See this story, which contains the Governor’s veto letters (scroll down to find HB 533).

The veto message displays surprising ignorance. Governor Jindal says there is another already-existing section of the election law that bans any party from calling itself the Independent Party. This is true. However, the Governor doesn’t seem to understand that the U.S. Constitution requires all states to provide ballot access procedures for independent candidates, separately and distinct from members of political parties . . .
Some of us have ceased being surprised by the ignorance of Republicans and Democrats.  After all, if they weren't ignorant, would they still be Republicans and Democrats?