Sunday, May 27, 2018

A Response To The Idaho CP Chairman's 15 Conditions, And A Proposed Path Forward

by J.R.Myers, Constitution Party National Executive Committee Western States Regional Chairman, Founder & former Alaska CP Chairman, ACP Candidate for AK Governor in 2014, and 2016 Presidential Candidate.  J.R. won Madera, Tulane & Riverside Counties in the 2016 California American Independent Party Presidential Primary Election.  Former Executive Committee member and Chairman of the Montana Libertarian Party in the 1980's, and Chairman of the Montana Reform Party 1998-2003.  He was also elected to serve as both Republican (Flathead County, MT) and Reform Party (Butte/Silver Bow, MT) Precinct Committeeman.  Former Vice Chair of the Alaskan Independence Party.  J.R. also served as a member of both the Kenai Peninsula Central Emergency Services and the Haines Borough Fire Service Area boards.  Opinions expressed are personal, and do not represent official Constitution Party positions.




As one of those directly involved in the 2016 Idaho CP Presidential Primary and General elections, the 2016 CP Presidential Nominating Convention, and now serving as CP Western Regional States Chairman, I have a unique perspective on the issues involved.  My experiences bolster my vested interest in promoting reconciliation between the National CP and the CP Idaho.  I believe a restoration of healthy relations between the CP Idaho and the National CP is not only possible, but necessary for us to move forward with unity and momentum heading towards the 2020 elections.

To this end, I have brought the pending disaffiliation discussion and the following 15 conditions to the attention of the CP National Executive Committee.  I believe it is important to give these conditions our full consideration.  I further believe it is incumbent upon the CP National Executive Committee to issue an unambiguous and conciliatory response seeking to maintain the CP Idaho within the CP state affiliate ranks.

Additionally, the Constitution Party Live online video interview program with Randy Stufflebeam and Gary Welch, will soon host representatives from the CP Idaho to discuss their concerns.  It is hoped that by shining light on the issues involved, true resolution can be accomplished.  It is also hoped that a CP Live reporter will attend the CP Idaho 2018 State Convention in Mountain Home, Idaho at the beginning of August to cover the momentous events.  I have been invited, and plan on attending the CP Idaho 2018 Convention to represent the CP National Executive Committee and to monitor the proceedings.

The following 15 Conditions were the result of a personal meeting which took place in Grangeville, ID on Saturday, May 12, 2018 between CP-Idaho’s Chair, F.W. Whitley and myself as CP Western States Regional Chairman.

The '15 Conditions' per CP Idaho Chairman, Floyd Whitley
"First, no more surprise presidential candidates who wait until the last minute to declare their candidacy on the floor of the national convention, and thereby avoid public scrutiny.  This manipulative practice shall be condemned and banned."

I can agree to this.  It is my opinion, that Presidential candidates should announce and file as soon as possible.  They should participate in debates, interviews, primaries, caucuses and conventions.  They should actively build the party while promoting their campaigns.  
"Second, to ensure legitimate due process in the national nomination, henceforth, each and every presidential candidate who seeks the nomination of the Constitution Party shall first declare his or her candidacy with the Federal Elections Commission (FEC) and report on FEC Form 1 and Form 2."

This is in line with the first condition, to which I also agree.
"Third, every CP presidential candidate must declare their candidacy prior to the close-of-business (EST) on the second Monday of the December (odd year) which immediately precedes the November General Election (even year), and in every Presidential election thereafter. [e.g. December 9, 2019; December 11, 2023; and so on.]"

I believe that this is due to the State of Idaho candidate filing deadlines.  Therefore, I would agree that it is important for all Presidential candidates to participate in all affiliate state primary campaigns, nominating caucuses or nominating conventions.  This is part of building campaign momentum, generating media coverage, exciting the base and vetting our candidates.
"Fourth, the date of the national convention must be returned to late mid-summer in a presidential election year to respect the statutory requirements and obligations of actual ballot qualified state parties. http://www.cpidaho.org/archives/theses-of-reform-of-the-constitution-party-3/"

Fifth, the national convention shall not be held prior to any state convention of any affiliated state party, with an exception being whenever a late national convention may convene after statutory candidate certification deadlines in any respective state affiliate party.
Sixth, under no circumstance shall the national convention be held prior to the state primary or state caucus of any Constitution Party ballot qualified affiliate state party. In 2020, national convention cannot occur earlier than June 2, 2020 to accommodate ballot qualified CP-South Dakota and CP-New Jersey.
Seventh, the date of national convention must incorporate the electoral duties and obligations of state ballot qualified affiliates."

I agree to conditons 4-7, which are closely related, due to the above stated reasons.  The National CP needs to acknowledge, respect, encourage and support the candidate nominating processes of the various CP state affiliates.  It is the CP National Committee (of which CP Idaho is a part) that establishes the date and location of the National Convention.

"Eighth, any state delegation standing on the floor of the national convention and seeking to cast national nomination ballots must first provide strict and verifiable proof that its state party held an actual statewide ballot—whether by primary ballot or by caucus ballot—via a democratic process which is in fact demanded by the national convention credentials committee.
Ninth, any state delegation standing on the floor of the national convention and seeking to cast national nomination ballots must have its verifiable primary or caucus results in evidence not later than fifteen business days prior to the national convention.  The national CP must end its shameful practice of proxy nomination.  http://www.cpidaho.org/archives/theses-of-reform-of-the-constitution-party-1/
Tenth, any state delegation standing on the floor of the national convention and seeking to cast national nomination ballots must cause its verifiable primary or caucus results to be published in not less than one paper of record within its state boundaries and not later than fifteen business days prior to national convention."

Conditions 8-10 shouldn't be an issue if the various state affiliates are able to demonstrate due diligence to their individual state legal processes.  There should be a clear trail of documentation to account for the legitimate process each affiliate must adhere to in the selection of its National Committee Members, and in the assignment of its NCM apportionment.  The National Convention Credentials Committee must certify that proper legal processes are followed in each affiliate to assure that their National Committee Members are legitimate representatives of viable state affiliate organizations.  All applicable CP bylaws and affiliate state laws, codes and regulations must be properly followed with verifiable proof by each affiliate seeking NCM credentialing.        

"Eleventh, ethical standards are absolutely paramount; therefore, under no circumstances shall any officer, employee, communications director or any other official within the national Constitution Party make use of their office, or even to cause the appearance of having used their office, on behalf of or in favoritism to any national CP presidential candidate while the nomination remains contested prior to the national convention’s actual nomination.
Twelfth, any officer, employee, communications director or any other official within the national Constitution Party who does use their office, or appears to have used their office, in favoritism of any national CP presidential candidate prior to the national convention’s actual nomination shall be censured and removed forthwith from office upon its discovery."

Conditions 11 & 12 are closely related.  Eleven could possibly be enshrined via an Executive Committee Resolution.  Twelve could better state that those actions could be, "grounds for censure or removal."  Subject, of course, to existing due process outlined in the CP Bylaws.    

"Thirteenth, every national CP candidate must stand in the currently existing state presidential primaries—CP-Idaho and CP-Missouri—without exception or excuse. And stand in any subsequent CP state primary should other primaries be formed.
Fourteenth, every national CP candidate must physically participate in open public competitive debate during the standard primary and caucus season prior to the national convention nomination; and every national CP candidate must do so side-by-side on the same stage at the same time with fellow national CP presidential candidates in answer to the People."

I also agree with Conditions 13 & 14, at least in sentiment.  However, each campaign is an entity unto itself, and not subject to party actions, per se.  It is the candidates and their teams that must develop and implement their individual campaign strategies.  These decision may be contingent upon logistics, finances, staffing, scheduling conflicts, support and/or travel restrictions.  Therefore, while I agree in principle, this is only ultimately enforceable by the CP members, voters and delegates.  They must weigh the activities of each campaign as they deliberate their selection of the eventual CP Presidential nominee.

"Fifteenth, the national website shall not be used as an in-kind donation for any single candidate (declared or undeclared) unless every single candidate is afforded the same promotion."

I also agree with Condition 15.  The National CP must be diligent to maintain neutrality with every campaign, until the nomination process is concluded.  

"CP-Idaho believes that every one of these conditions is actionable.  Every one of these conditions can be adopted by the National Executive Committee without the necessity of a special meeting.  The authority is found in the Constitution of the Constitution Party, Article IV, as follows:  “Rules pertaining to the call and organization of the National Convention shall be adopted by the National Committee or its executive committee.”
I call upon the CP National Chairman to place this matter on the next CP ExCom meeting agenda for discussion and resolution by the National Executive Committee.  This must occur as soon as possible, prior to the CP Idaho 2018 State Convention in Mountain Home, ID in August.  It is my intent to work with others to compose just such a Resolution of Reconciliation.  Remember, United We Stand!


6 comments:

  1. We place a lot of effort into Presidential Campaigns when we should instead be focusing on down ballot elections. I think that the ends justifying the means process we currently use for our presidential candidates is harmful to our party. Imagine if we put the same amount of effort into a Senate or Congressional campaign, instead of a failed presidential campaign.

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  2. There is zero reason to put South Dakota in this!!!! We do not have to have our Presidential candidates in primary and NEVER want to as that would add a petition requirement we dindo want or need to start doing.

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  3. Every state must honor it's own process. There will be fifty of them. That is the nature of our party organization.

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  4. First, a distinction exists between a primary and a caucus.

    If South Dakota dislikes a primary, then a caucus is required...if South Dakota ever intends to obtain an actual representative statewide nomination ballot originating in its People. None are in actual evidence...anywhere in the national party...with the exception of Idaho.

    Second, there very much is reason to "put South Dakota in this".

    Unless South Dakota can demonstrate that it held a certifiable statewide representative and democratically held selection ballot in 2016...and a democratic process is indeed demanded under the national credentialing committee...then it cannot legitimately be given the floor during a nomination.

    Why? Because it is casting proxy ballots in lieu...which is to say the same institution of "super delegates," exactly as employed in Hillary Clinton's DNC corruptions.

    A state delegation's proxies (even if they were legitimate...and they are not) literally represent no one other than the immediate individuals on the so-called delegation. Indeed, without a statewide representative ballot in evidence, it cannot really be considered a state delegation.

    Further, there is nothing upon which an electoral majority can be determined...because you lack the evident ballots, even though you substituted proxies in lieu.

    Because South Dakota cannot demonstrate that it did in fact hold a statewide certifiable ballot, it cast a non-representative PROXY in 2016. So, South Dakota too is very much "in this".

    Proxies are expressly banned under the national party's own bylaws! They are also banned under parliamentary rules...which the national party allegedly follows.

    Without any security that the vote has not been manipulated (and you do have and cannot provide such security), when proxies are used in this manner, they transfer what are inalienable citizens rights.

    Is that what the Constitution Party stands for?...A transferal of inalienable rights to others?

    If the National Party refuses its complete support of non severable rights, then of what use is it? The salt has lost its flavor, to borrow the Scriptural teaching.

    Idaho does not care whether South Dakota seeks to install a primary. And we have never demanded that. But what we do demand that South Dakota (as well as every other state affiliate) produce verifiable statewide representative ballots which directly originate in the People of their respective state affiliates. In other words, ballots that are attached to the People. Show us the ballots.

    Absent a state primary (which is the most official and least corruptible process available), states have the option to obtain their DIRECT ballots via a certified caucus procedure. but if you do neither of these, then you disfranchise your own electorate.

    For the national party to constantly belabor the 9th and 10th Amendments in the Bill of Rights, and then utterly fail, or refuse, to show any support whatsoever of these crucial Amendments in its own nomination, that is tantamount to hypocrisy and willful manipulation. We do not need more lip service. Acts, not words.

    Show us the statewide certified ballot which empowers your state delegation--whether gotten by primary or by caucus. If you do not have these, upon what basis does your state delegation pretend to stand in nomination?

    If you cannot show these direct ballots, you cast deceptive proxies, yes. But what you do not cast is a democratic ballot, nor is your proceeding even remotely akin to republicanism. You therefore deny Constitutional guarantees.

    Is that what the National Party is really all about? More to the point, is that the sum of its "Vision 20/20"? If so, then America needs no more of it. Our People are disfranchised enough already.

    No more proxy nominations.

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  5. Without any security that the vote has not been manipulated (and you do *not* have and cannot provide such security), when proxies are used in this manner, they transfer what are inalienable citizens rights.

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  6. Floyd,

    While I agree with you on a number of your state's "conditions for affiliation", I also take exception to some of your wording (which is provocative and not productive) as well as what appears to be a contradiction in your statements.

    1) Your opening remark:

    "thereby avoid public scrutiny. This manipulative practice "

    1a) implies that there is (or has been) some desire to avoid public scrutiny.

    1b) implies a sinister "manipulative" motive and declares it to be a "practice" (more than once / ongoing pattern of abuse)

    You also said "I further believe it is incumbent upon the CP National Executive Committee to issue an unambiguous and conciliatory response seeking to maintain the CP Idaho within the CP state affiliate ranks."

    Floyd, I'm not sure that making accusations about (perceived) past practices and questioning peoples' motives is a constructive way to 'heal' the party. I'm not sure that it is constructive to make unsubstantiated accusations in the same communication that you demand a conciliatory response.

    I can also assure you that there was absolutely nothing manipulative or sinister about Mr Castle being conscripted as a candidacy at the last National Convention. If you are unaware of his medical history, ask him. And, "IF" you are aware of it, then your entire list of demands is built on a misrepresentation of history.

    2) You cite the 10th Amendment which clearly acknowledges individual state sovereignty and independence. You then go on to "demand" that the National Executive Committee "dictate" to individual states how they run their primaries/caucuses.

    I, for one, object to, and resent, any other state that seeks to dictate how my state (or state party) operates. We are subject to Federal and State election laws. Beyond established law, our Federal Government - and National Party - should not be involved in dictating how we operate.


    3) Some of your demands cannot, as you assert, simply be adopted by the NEC.

    Some of your demands would require changes to our bylaws and add requirements to determine 'valid' presidential candidates.

    And I would caution about imposing too many 'restrictions' on candidates and their campaigns - lest technical infractions be found for all candidates, leaving our party with NO presidential candidate due to 'technicalities'.

    In particular, Missouri does not require a primary. It is certainly an option that is open to the party - if they wish to 'pay' for the service.

    However, Missouri has other legal methods by which Missouri can select the candidate for their pary.

    For your state to 'dictate' to the National Executive Committee and insist that the NEC 'dictate' to Missouri that they must choose a 'specific' method for selecting their candidate - flies in the face of the 10th amendment.

    I'm certainly not against participating in the MO primary - but I am staunchly against having another state dictate that we must participate in it.

    *

    Floyd,

    I look forward to the time when Idaho willingly and happily reaffirms its alliance to the National Constitution Party. I sincerely hope those wounds can be healed.

    And, as I stated above, I can see a lot of common ground with many of your demands.

    But, I also see some hostility in the wording of your demands - some of which is unjustified from what I have come to learn.

    I am also troubled that your demands appear to be an all-or-nothing list and are followed by the "hint/suggestion" that once we get this list resolved your state will be "adding more" to the list.

    If this is not the full list, then in my opinion, it is inappropriate to consider it until it is complete.

    I truly hope this issue can be resolved. AND I hope you are able to revise your list to be more respectful and constructive and in compliance with our US Constitution.

    Best Regards,
    -john blazek
    MO State Committeeman
    MO Exec Committeeman
    National Committeeman

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