About the Founding of the America First Party
August 1, 2002
The America First Party was founded on the evening April 15, 2002. The central focus of the party is to put America and all Americans first by electing candidates who will restore morality, ethics, common sense, and service to public service, and will return our Constitution to its proper place in our Republic.
At the founding meeting, were representatives of eight state parties that had disaffiliated earlier that day from the Reform Party (Arkansas, Tennessee, Georgia, Mississippi, Illinois, New Hampshire, Colorado, Iowa). Also in attendance were grassroots leaders of more than a dozen other states interested in building a new political vehicle to challenge our corrupt "two-party" system. An agreement was struck, and five days later representatives of these states came together and adopted provisional rules, a mission statement, and founding principles.
On the morning of April 15th, eleven state parties, affiliates of the Reform Party, announced they had voted to disaffiliate or dissolve, and 6 of the 11 person Executive Committee and nearly 30 members of the National Committee had resigned from their positions. There was a consensus among the activist leaders of the party and its general membership that the Reform Party was irretrievably broken. Many had been dissatisfied with party leadership's decisions to forsake the platform approved at the 2001 National Convention and to encourage intra-party battles rather than fight for the good of the country. For many, the final straw was the decision by the Reform Party's chairman to illegally dissolve its National Committee in the middle of a vote, rather than abide by its decisions.
Once the break was complete, the newly established party created press relations, candidate, and party building committees. The break-up of the Reform Party and the founding of the America First Party generated positive media coverage for the America First Party. In late April, the party's website went live. Within weeks, the FEC had recognized the America First National Committee as a national party committee. Party headquarters was flooded with requests for more information. The task of building a nationwide party was well underway.
The Founding National Convention will convene from August 8 through 11. By this time there will be a total of 19 affiliated states with many more in the process of joining. Eight candidates to elective office will be representing the America First Party throughout the country. The Website has had a quarter of a million hits and the interim chairman, Dan Charles, has been a frequent guest on the radio and television.
This convention will finalize a Constitution and Platform. Consistent with the party's goals of learning from history and from our experience with other parties, the party is structured very simply. The National Committee is granted complete authority over all aspects of the national party. The National Convention is granted primary authority over the platform and the nominations for President and Vice-President. An Executive Committee, consisting of the officers and standing committee chairs elected by the National Committee, exists for the purpose of coordinating the operations of the party in compliance with the resolutions of the National Committee.
As the fastest growing political party in the country, the America First Party has become the only party, which will challenge the duopoloy that has taken over this country. The AFP, which offers a populist, conservative alternative, will appeal to the many citizens who are looking for a voice that represents their views. The Party will appeal to those who feel disenfranchised as well as active voters and fully intends to be the party chosen to lead this country back to its founding principles.