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Minutes of the America First National Committee

Tuesday, March 18, 2003
(continued on March 20, 22, 25 and April 1, 2003)

BE IT REMEMBERED that the America First National Committee met on Tuesday, March 18, 2003 at 9 p.m. Eastern Time, pursuant to the Resolution of the Operating Committee of March 11, 2003.

The meeting was opened by the Chairman at 9:03 p.m. ET.

The National Committee meeting was opened with the Pledge of Allegiance. The Secretary delivered the invocation.

The Secretary called the roll of National Committee members.

Present:

  • John Verser of Arkansas
  • Wanda Weatherford and Larry Carroll of Colorado
  • Helen Leka, George Radzwillas, and Floyd Atchley of Connecticut
  • Phil Anderson of Georgia
  • Dave Doyle of Iowa
  • Tim Lohrmann of Idaho
  • Tom White of Massachusetts
  • John Clark and Virginia Clark of Maryland
  • Ryan Law of Minnesota
  • Nancy Blankenship of Missouri
  • Cleve Pate of North Carolina
  • Francis Winters of New Hampshire
  • Michael Illions of New Jersey
  • Maureen Flannery and Jim Arft of New York
  • John Francis and Ward Chorpenning of Ohio
  • Karen Faye Wilson and Patrick Wilson of Oregon
  • George Stryker and David Thomas of Pennsylvania
  • Warren Baldwin of Tennessee
  • George Pangborn of Texas
  • Rick Besanko and Chris Wenzel of Virginia
  • Frank Hackl of Wisconsin
  • Jon Hill of Massachusetts, Finance Committee Chairman
  • Trey Golmon of Mississippi, Ballot Access Committee Chairman
  • Mike O'Brian of Michigan, Platform Committee Chairman
  • James D. Jones of Tennessee, Party Building Chairman
  • James Edwards of Tennessee, Candidates Committee Chairman
  • Romelle Winters, Public Relations Committee Chairman
  • Maureen McHugh of Illinois, Treasurer
  • John Pittman Hey of Mississippi, Secretary
  • Gene Lovell of Georgia, Vice-chairman
  • Dan Charles of Colorado, Chairman

Absent:

  • Ron Teal, John Spooner, and Vincent Wallgren of California
  • Marcel Dietze of Colorado
  • George Bashure, Martin McClellan, and Gaurav Ahuja of Florida
  • Jim Monagan of Iowa
  • Jim Cox and Miles Cunningham of Idaho
  • Dan Morrison and William Lowry of Michigan
  • Clint Muskopf and Leo Daley of Minnesota
  • Jeff Plott and Norman Kent of North Carolina
  • Ted Maravelias of New Hampshire
  • Allen Finger and Richard Rossillo of New Jersey
  • Gary Grella of New York
  • James Bunosky of Ohio
  • Melvin Johnson of Oregon
  • Blake Buffington and Wes Anderson of Texas
  • Harrison Mullendore, Shauna Mullendore, and Heath Torstveit of Utah
  • Linda Muller of Virginia
  • Pat Owens and Scott Trindl of Wisconsin

Sam Cross of Pennsylvania and Diane Lovell of Georgia joined the meeting after the roll call had been taken.

A quorum being present, the meeting was called to order by the Chairman.

The Secretary reported receiving notice of the resignation of Gary Grella as National Committee member from New York. The Secretary moved the amendment of the Certified List of National Committee members to strike Gary Grella from the list. His motion was seconded by Mr. Lovell and adopted by unanimous vote.

The Secretary reported that George Bashure, Ted Maravelias, Blake Buffington, Wes Anderson, and Linda Muller had all been absent from the last three consecutive meetings of the National Committee. Mr. Maravelias, Mr. Buffington, and Mrs. Muller had previously been contacted regarding absences, and had provided no response to the Secretary.

Mr. O'Brian moved that Mr. Maravelias, Mr. Buffington, and Mrs. Muller be stricken from the Certified List of National Committee members. His motion was seconded Mr. White and adopted by an overwhelming majority vote of the National Committee.

There being no further credentialing matters, Mr. Lovell moved the adoption of the Certified List of National Committee members as amended in its entirety. His motion was seconded by Mr. White and adopted by an overwhelming majority vote of the National Committee.

Mr. O'Brian moved the adoption of the Agenda as previously circulated by the Chairman. His motion was seconded by Mr. Lovell.

Mrs. Winters moved to amend the Agenda to add two resolutions from the Public Relations Committee. Her amendment was seconded by Mr. White and adopted by unanimous vote.

Mr. Jones moved to amend the Agenda to move his Resolution limiting debate forward in the Agenda ahead of all other resolutions. His amendment was seconded by Mrs. Weatherford and adopted by unanimous vote.

Mr. Lovell moved to amend the Agenda to add a time for questions to the National Treasurer after her report. His amendment was seconded by Mr. O'Brian and adopted by unanimous vote.

There being no further amendments to the Agenda, the question was called and the Agenda was approved by unanimous vote.

The Chairman gave a short report. He described the plans the party has undertaken to oppose the unlawful war against Iraq, including hosting an on-line Petition and working to form a coalition of like-minded leaders to speak out against the war. He described briefly the intermittent problems in the party's web hosting service. He reminded the members of the need for respectful and reasonable debate in the party's meetings.

The Secretary reminded the members that he had previously circulated draft minutes of the February 18th meeting of the National Committee (which had been continued to February 25th) for consideration and adoption. The Secretary moved the approval of the minutes. His motion was seconded by Mr. Jones and adopted by unanimous vote.

The Treasurer delivered a short report. The Party's bank balance as of the last day of February was $7,225.18. Of that, $1,623.25 is earmarked for Party Building and Ballot Access, and $1,623.25 is earmarked for National Convention expenses. After making a $1000 payment to retire the debt owed to Mr. Charles, the available unrestricted funds amount to $2,978.69.

Mrs. Winters moved the adoption of the Treasurer's report. Her motion was seconded by Mr. Illions and approved by unanimous vote, Mr. Clark abstaining.

Mr. Jones moved the adoption of his Resolution limiting debate and the length of National Committee meetings. His resolution was seconded by Mr. Illions.

The Committee conducted a vigorous debate on the merits of the Resolution. Some members argued that the limit on debate was unethical and indicated a lack of respect for the opinions of all National Committee members. Other members countered that the meetings ran too long and that the debate needed to be reigned in so that National Committee meetings would not lose quorum.

Mr. Clark proposed an amendment to the Resolution to add a "sunset provision" of three months to the proposed Resolution. His amendment was seconded by Mrs. Leka and accepted as friendly by unanimous consent.

Mr. Hill proposed an amendment to the Resolution to permit debate to be extended by majority vote of the members. His amendment was seconded by Mr. Clark and accepted as friendly by unanimous consent.

The Chairman made a suggestion to clarify the meaning of the Resolution. He suggested that the first paragraph be replaced with the following text: "Resolved, that the America First National Committee adopts the following standing parliamentary rules regarding debate of main motions and amendments at teleconference meetings of the America First National Committee:"

Mr. Jones vigorously objected to the Chairman's suggestion.

The Chairman made a suggestion to clarify the meaning of the Resolution in another place. He suggested that the second sentence of the third paragraph be replaced with the following text: "Two hours following the scheduled start or resumption of any teleconference meeting of the National Committee, the meeting shall be recessed, unless the body votes to extend or adjourn the meeting."

Mr. Jones vigorously objected to the Chairman's suggestion.

The Chairman suggested the change of the word "may" to "must" in the second sentence of the third paragraph. Without objection, the proposal was adopted.

The resolution, as finally amended, reads as follows:

RESOLUTION REGARDING THE ADOPTION OF PARLIAMENTARY RULES REGARDING THE CONDUCT OF DEBATE DURING NATIONAL COMMITTEE MEETINGS AND TO LIMIT THE LENGTH OF NATIONAL COMMITTEE MEETINGS

Resolved, that the National Committee, does adopt the same rules for debate on any motion, resolution, amendment as the National Convention. These rules will also apply to all National Committee, teleconference calls. They are listed below.

"Section 4. Debate on any issue or resolution shall consist of 3 speakers for and 3 speakers against, with a 2-minute time limit per speaker, except in the case of an appeal from the decision of the Chair, in which case the Chair may speak once for three minutes, and the person bringing the appeal may speak once for three minutes. Debate may be extended by a simple majority vote."

The National Committee also sets a time limit of two hours for any teleconference meeting, from the time it is called to meet. At the end of two hours the National Committee meeting must either be recessed or adjourned or a vote can be taken to extend the meeting. The meeting may be extended by a simple majority vote.

This resolution shall automatically expire 3 months following its adoption.

The question was called, and the Chairman declared the Resolution adopted by greater than two thirds vote of the National Committee.

Mr. Hey tendered his resignation from the position of National Secretary. He explained his reasons in an electronic mail that Mr. O'Brian read later in the meeting.

Mr. Lovell nominated Mr. Illions to serve as temporary recording secretary. His motion was seconded by Mr. O'Brian and adopted by unanimous vote.

Mr. White moved that the committee stand in recess. After some discussion, the question was called. The Chairman asked for a roll call vote. The motion to recess failed with a roll call vote of 13 "yeas" and 23 "nays".

The Chairman passed the gavel to the Vice-Chairman and delivered a point of personal privilege. He stated that he refused to accept the resignation of the National Secretary, and urged the National Committee to permit him to discuss with Mr. Hey his withdrawal of his notice of resignation. He stated that it would be a huge loss to the party for Mr. Hey to leave, and that any transition would be very difficult.

Various other members spoke for and against seeking Mr. Hey's return as Secretary.

The Vice Chairman returned the gavel to the Chairman.

The National Committee took no action to accept the resignation or elect a permanent replacement for the Secretary.

Mr. O'Brian moved to reopen the Agenda. His motion died for lack of a second.

The Chairman introduced the Resolution forwarded by the Operating Committee to advertise in the American Free Press. This resolution had been committed to the Operating Committee at the previous meeting of the National Committee, and the Operating Committee had now reported back a proposed resolution.

The Resolution was moved by a member from the floor, and seconded by Mr. Jones.

Mr. Pangborn moved to amend the resolution to reinsert the requirement that the ad mention the party's upcoming National Convention. His amendment was seconded by Mr. Clark.

Various members spoke against the amendment. Some argued that there wouldn't be sufficient seating at the convention for guests. Others argued that the convention would be a working convention and of little interest to non-delegates.

The question on the amendment was called, and the amendment was rejected by majority vote.

Mr. Besanko objected to the language that grants the Operating Committee the authority to approve the content of the advertisement. He argued that the National Committee should trust the Public Relations Committee to finalize the ad's content.

The Resolution reads as follows:

Be It Resolved by the America First National Committee:

That, the America First National Committee does hereby authorize the expenditure of up to $1000, to be allocated from party building funds, for the purpose of purchasing a one-page full color or black and white advertisement in the American Free Press; and,

That, the purpose of the advertisement shall be to encourage the readers of the American Free Press to become involved by joining the party, contributing money, or both; and,

That, the America First National Committee directs the Public Relations Committee to create the ad; and,

That, unless the Public Relations Committee submits the proposed advertisement to the America First National Committee for its approval at the same meeting at which this resolution is passed, that the authority to review and approve this advertisement is granted to the Operating Committee; and,

That, the Operating Committee is granted the authority to authorize changes to the advertisement, without regard to the advertisement's manner of initial approval; and,

That, the advertisement shall be submitted to the American Free Press for publication in the issue dated April 28, 2003.

The question was called, and the Resolution was adopted by majority vote.

Mr. Hill moved the adoption of a Resolution suspending the Friends of the America First Party fundraising program. His resolution was seconded by Mrs. Winters.

Mr. Hill proposed an amendment to the Resolution that would continue the Friends of the America First Party fundraising program, but would remove the complicated formula which earmarks the funds raised by the program for various purposes. His amendment was seconded by Mr. White.

Various members spoke for and against continuing the fund raising program and the earmark allocation formula. Some thought that the program should be continued because of the money that it had raised. Others thought it was too complicated to continue and might cost to much too fulfill the promises made to the donors to the program.

Mrs. McHugh moved to amend the amendment to shut down the Friends fundraising program and to cancel the earmark allocation formula. Her amendment was seconded by Mr. Clark.

A member suggested that a quorum was not present. A roll call established the absence of a quorum.

The Chairman declared a recess of the meeting until 8:00 p.m. ET Thursday, March 20, 2003.

The members of the National Committee reconvened at 8:00 p.m. ET Thursday, March 20, 2003.

The Chairman stated that, because of his refusal to accept the resignation of the National Secretary, and for the good of the Party, Mr. Hey had withdrawn his resignation and would continue to serve as National Secretary as long as he enjoyed the confidence of the members of the National Committee.

The Secretary called the roll of members:

Present:

  • John Spooner of California
  • Wanda Weatherford of Colorado
  • George Radzwillas of Connecticut
  • Martin McClellan of Florida
  • Phil Anderson and Diane Lovell of Georgia
  • Dave Doyle of Iowa
  • Jim Cox of Idaho
  • John Clark and Virginia Clark of Maryland
  • Ryan Law of Minnesota
  • Nancy Blankenship of Missouri
  • Cleve Pate of North Carolina
  • Francis Winters of New Hampshire
  • Michael Illions of New Jersey
  • Maureen Flannery of New York
  • Ward Chorpenning of Ohio
  • Sam Cross, George Stryker and David Thomas of Pennsylvania
  • Warren Baldwin of Tennessee
  • Rick Besanko of Virginia
  • Jon Hill of Massachusetts, Finance Committee Chairman
  • Mike O'Brian of Michigan, Platform Committee Chairman
  • James D. Jones of Tennessee, Party Building Chairman
  • Romelle Winters, Public Relations Committee Chairman
  • Maureen McHugh of Illinois, Treasurer
  • John Pittman Hey of Mississippi, Secretary
  • Gene Lovell of Georgia, Vice-chairman
  • Dan Charles of Colorado, Chairman

Absent:

  • John Verser of Arkansas
  • Ron Teal and Vincent Wallgren of California
  • Larry Carroll and Marcel Dietze of Colorado
  • Helen Leka and Floyd Atchley of Connecticut
  • George Bashure and Gaurav Ahuja of Florida
  • Jim Monagan of Iowa
  • Tim Lohrmann and Miles Cunningham of Idaho
  • Tom White of Massachusetts
  • Dan Morrison and William Lowry of Michigan
  • Clint Muskopf and Leo Daley of Minnesota
  • Jeff Plott and Norman Kent of North Carolina
  • Allen Finger and Richard Rossillo of New Jersey
  • Jim Arft of New York
  • John Francis and James Bunosky of Ohio
  • Karen Faye Wilson, Patrick Wilson, and Melvin Johnson of Oregon
  • George Pangborn and Wes Anderson of Texas
  • Harrison Mullendore, Shauna Mullendore, and Heath Torstveit of Utah
  • Chris Wenzel of Virginia
  • Frank Hackl, Pat Owens and Scott Trindl of Wisconsin
  • Trey Golmon of Mississippi, Ballot Access Committee Chairman
  • James Edwards of Tennessee, Candidates Committee Chairman

A quorum being absent, the Chairman declared a recess of the meeting until 9:00 p.m. ET Saturday, March 22, 2003.

The members of the National Committee reconvened at 9:00 p.m. ET Saturday, March 22, 2003. The Secretary called the roll of members:

Present:

  • Wanda Weatherford of Colorado
  • Gaurav Ahuja of Florida
  • Jim Cox of Idaho
  • Tom White of Massachusetts
  • John Clark of Maryland
  • Ryan Law of Minnesota
  • Nancy Blankenship of Missouri
  • Cleve Pate of North Carolina
  • Francis Winters of New Hampshire
  • Richard Rossillo and Michael Illions of New Jersey
  • Jim Arft of New York
  • Sam Cross, George Stryker and David Thomas of Pennsylvania
  • Warren Baldwin of Tennessee
  • George Pangborn of Texas
  • Rick Besanko of Virginia
  • Pat Owens of Wisconsin
  • Jon Hill of Massachusetts, Finance Committee Chairman
  • Mike O'Brian of Michigan, Platform Committee Chairman
  • James D. Jones of Tennessee, Party Building Chairman
  • James Edwards of Tennessee, Candidates Committee Chairman
  • Romelle Winters, Public Relations Committee Chairman
  • Maureen McHugh of Illinois, Treasurer
  • John Pittman Hey of Mississippi, Secretary
  • Gene Lovell of Georgia, Vice-chairman
  • Dan Charles of Colorado, Chairman

Absent:

  • John Verser of Arkansas
  • John Spooner, Ron Teal, and Vincent Wallgren of California
  • Larry Carroll and Marcel Dietze of Colorado
  • Helen Leka, George Radzwillas, and Floyd Atchley of Connecticut
  • George Bashure and Martin McClellan of Florida
  • Phil Anderson and Diane Lovell of Georgia
  • Dave Doyle and Jim Monagan of Iowa
  • Tim Lohrmann and Miles Cunningham of Idaho
  • Virginia Clark of Maryland
  • Dan Morrison and William Lowry of Michigan
  • Clint Muskopf and Leo Daley of Minnesota
  • Jeff Plott and Norman Kent of North Carolina
  • Allen Finger of New Jersey
  • Maureen Flannery of New York
  • John Francis, Ward Chorpenning, and James Bunosky of Ohio
  • Karen Faye Wilson, Patrick Wilson, and Melvin Johnson of Oregon
  • Wes Anderson of Texas
  • Harrison Mullendore, Shauna Mullendore, and Heath Torstveit of Utah
  • Chris Wenzel of Virginia
  • Frank Hackl and Scott Trindl of Wisconsin
  • Trey Golmon of Mississippi, Ballot Access Committee Chairman

A quorum being absent, the Chairman declared a recess of the meeting until 9:00 p.m. ET Tuesday, March 25, 2003.

The members of the National Committee reconvened at 9:00 p.m. ET Tuesday, March 25, 2003. The Secretary called the roll of members:

Present:

  • John Spooner of California
  • Wanda Weatherford and Larry Carroll of Colorado
  • George Radzwillas of Connecticut
  • Gaurav Ahuja of Florida
  • Phil Anderson and Diane Lovell of Georgia
  • Dave Doyle of Iowa
  • Tim Lohrmann of Idaho
  • Tom White of Massachusetts
  • John Clark and Virginia Clark of Maryland
  • Daniel Morrison of Michigan
  • Ryan Law of Minnesota
  • Nancy Blankenship of Missouri
  • Cleve Pate and Jeff Plott of North Carolina
  • Francis Winters of New Hampshire
  • Richard Rossillo of New Jersey
  • Jim Arft of New York
  • John Francis and Ward Chorpenning of Ohio
  • Sam Cross, George Stryker and David Thomas of Pennsylvania
  • Warren Baldwin of Tennessee
  • George Pangborn of Texas
  • Rick Besanko and Chris Wenzel of Virginia
  • Frank Hackl and Pat Owens of Wisconsin
  • Jon Hill of Massachusetts, Finance Committee Chairman
  • Mike O'Brian of Michigan, Platform Committee Chairman
  • James D. Jones of Tennessee, Party Building Chairman
  • James Edwards of Tennessee, Candidates Committee Chairman
  • Romelle Winters, Public Relations Committee Chairman
  • Maureen McHugh of Illinois, Treasurer
  • John Pittman Hey of Mississippi, Secretary
  • Gene Lovell of Georgia, Vice-chairman
  • Dan Charles of Colorado, Chairman

Absent:

  • John Verser of Arkansas
  • Ron Teal and Vincent Wallgren of California
  • Marcel Dietze of Colorado
  • Floyd Atchley of Connecticut
  • George Bashure of Florida
  • Jim Monagan of Iowa
  • Jim Cox and Miles Cunningham of Idaho
  • William Lowry of Michigan
  • Clint Muskopf and Leo Daley of Minnesota
  • Norman Kent of North Carolina
  • Allen Finger and Michael Illions of New Jersey
  • James Bunosky of Ohio
  • Patrick Wilson and Melvin Johnson of Oregon
  • Wes Anderson of Texas
  • Harrison Mullendore, Shauna Mullendore, and Heath Torstveit of Utah
  • Scott Trindl of Wisconsin
  • Trey Golmon of Mississippi, Ballot Access Committee Chairman

Karen Wilson of Oregon, Martin McClellan of Florida, Helen Leka of Connecticut, and Maureen Flannery of New York joined the meeting after the roll call had been taken.

Mr. Bradley Maurer was present, first as a guest, and then as a member of the National Committee from New York.

A quorum being present, the Chairman called the meeting back to order at 9:10 p.m. ET.

The National Committee meeting was opened with the Pledge of Allegiance. The Secretary delivered the invocation.

Mr. Arft moved that the pending Resolution be tabled, the Agenda suspended, and the Credentials Report be reopened. His motion was seconded by Mr. McClellan and adopted by unanimous consent.

The Secretary reported that he had received notice of the election of Bradley Maurer as a National Committee member from New York. He moved the amendment of the Certified List of National Committee members to add Mr. Maurer as a member from New York. His motion was seconded by Mr. Lovell and adopted by unanimous vote.

Mr. McClellan moved the amendment of the Certified List of National Committee members to strike George Bashure of Florida from the list. His motion was seconded by Mr. Ahuja and adopted by unanimous vote.

The Secretary reported that he had received notice of the resignation of Wes Anderson of Texas and Heath Torstveit of Utah as members of the National Committee. He moved the amendment of the Certified List of National Committee members to strike Mr. Anderson and Mr. Torstveit from the list. His motion was seconded by Mr. Pangborn and adopted by unanimous vote.

Mr. Law moved the amendment of the Certified List of National Committee members to strike Leo Daley and Clint Muskopf of Minnesota from the list. His motion was seconded by Mr. O'Brian and adopted with all members voting "aye" except Mr. Hey, who cast the lone "nay" vote.

The Secretary reported that the National Committee now consists of 64 members.

There being no further credentialing matters, Mr. McClellan moved the adoption of the Certified List of National Committee members as amended in its entirety. His motion was seconded by Mr. O'Brian and adopted by unanimous vote of the National Committee.

Mr. Hey moved that the Committee now return to the orders of the day. It was so ordered by unanimous consent.

The Chairman reminded the members that there was currently pending a Resolution to suspend the Friends of the America First Party, an amendment to that Resolution proposed by Mr. Hill, and an amendment to the amendment proposed by Mrs. McHugh.

Mrs. McHugh withdrew her amendment to the Hill amendment.

The Rule limiting debate was invoked to prohibit any further debate.

Mr. Hill moved to extend debate. His motion was seconded by Mr. White. Mr. Jones raised an objection to extending debate.

The question on extending debate was called, and a roll call vote was taken:

In favor of extending debate: Hey, McHugh, Mrs. Winters, Hill, Spooner, Lohrmann, White, Mrs. Clark, Law, Cross, Stryker, Thomas and Besanko.

Opposed to extending debate: Lovell, Jones, Edwards, O'Brian, Weatherford, Leka, Radzwillas, McClellan, Ahuja, Anderson, Mrs. Lovell, Doyle, Clark, Morrison, Blankenship, Pate, Plott, Rossillo, Illions, Flannery, Maurer, Arft, Francis, Chorpenning, Mrs. Wilson, Baldwin, Pangborn, Wenzel, Hackl and Owens.

The motion to extend debate failed.

The question was called on adopting the Hill amendment to continue the Friends fundraising program and to discontinue the earmarking allocation of funds. The vote was taken by roll call vote:

In favor of the Hill amendment: Hey, McHugh, Mrs. Winters, Hill, Ahuja, Doyle, Lohrmann, White, Law, Winters, Francis, Chorpenning, Cross, Stryker and Besanko.

Opposed to the Hill amendment: Lovell, Jones, Edwards, O'Brian, Spooner, Weatherford, Leka, Radzwillas, McClellan, Anderson, Mrs. Lovell, Morrison, Blankenship, Pate, Rossillo, Illions, Arft, Mrs. Wilson, Baldwin, Pangborn and Wenzel.

Abstaining: Clark, Mrs. Clark, Flannery, Maurer, Thomas, Hackl and Owens.

The National Treasurer asked to speak on the adoption of the Resolution as it related to her duties as Treasurer. The Chairman asked unanimous consent that Mrs. McHugh be permitted to speak. Some members raised objection. The National Treasurer withdrew her request to speak on the Resolution.

The Resolution reads as follows:

RESOLUTION REGARDING SUSPENDING THE FRIENDS OF THE AMERICA FIRST PARTY FUNDRAISING PROGRAM

Resolved, That the Friends of the America First Party Program be suspended, during this early stage of the party's development, and be reinstated at a later time, when more resources are available in the party to service the demands and requirements of this program; and,

That the promises already made to existing participants in the Friends of the America First Party program be honored.

The Resolution was rejected by majority vote of the National Committee.

Mr. Hill moved the adoption of a Resolution authorizing the purchase of fundraising inserts for the party newsletter. His motion was seconded by Mr. Francis. The resolution reads as follows:

RESOLUTION REGARDING THE PRODUCTION OF FUNDRAISING INSERTS FOR THE NEWSLETTER

Resolved, That the America First National Committee does hereby authorize the expenditure of up to $1,450 for the purchase of 25,000 fundraising letter inserts for the newsletter.

The resolution was adopted by majority vote of the National Committee.

Mr. Hill moved the adoption of a resolution regarding the expenditures necessary to produce the party newsletter and pay for the full page advertisement in the American Free Press. His resolution was seconded by Mr. White.

Mr. Jones moved to strike mention of the Convention funds from the Resolution. His amendment was seconded by Mr. Lovell. After some discussion, the amendment was withdrawn.

The resolution reads as follows:

RESOLUTION REGARDING THE SIMULTANEOUS EXPENDITURE OF FUNDS FOR THE NEWSLETTER AND AMERICAN FREE PRESS ADVERTISING

Resolved, that the Finance Committee recommends that both projects be pursued simultaneously, and that in order to make funds available for the projects, that the Party Building and Convention funds be brought into the general fund, and that the first revenue to come from the newsletter be returned to a segregated fund for the Convention equal to the amount taken from the Convention allocation.

The Resolution was adopted by majority vote of the National Committee.

Mr. Hill moved the adoption of a resolution authorizing the Finance Committee to create and approve the final content of the fundraising insert. His motion was seconded by Mr. Francis.

The Resolution reads as follows:

RESOLUTION REGARDING COMPOSITION OF NEWSLETTER FUNDRAISING INSERTS

Resolved, the National Committee does hereby grant the authority to the Finance Committee to approve the fundraising letter, text and form, that is included in the fundraising insert for the newsletters.

The Resolution was approved by unanimous vote with one abstention.

Mr. Jones moved that the meeting be extended by one hour. His motion was seconded by Mr. O'Brian and adopted by majority vote.

Mrs. Winters moved the adoption of a Resolution authorizing production of the generic Party newsletter. Her resolution was seconded by Mr. Lovell.

The Resolution reads as follows:

Whereas, in a competitive bidding process it was determined that the America First National Committee can produce between 4500 and 5000 newsletters at a cost of $1715, and can prepare and distribute by postal mail approximately 3000 at a cost of $920, for a total cost of $2635;

Be It Resolved,

That, The America First National Committee does hereby authorize the expenditure of up to $2800, for the production of up to 5000 generic newsletters and initial distribution of up to 3000 issues; and,

That, The PR Committee is authorized to approve the final version, which shall not deviate substantially from what has been circulated to the National Committee.

The Resolution was adopted by unanimous vote of the National Committee.

Mrs. Winters moved the adoption of a Resolution approving the content of the full page advertisement for the American Free Press. Her motion was seconded by Mr. Jones.

The Resolution reads as follows:

Resolved by the America First National Committee, that the attached full page ad is accepted for publication in the American Free Press in accordance with the relevant resolution which authorized such expenditure.

The Resolution was adopted by majority vote of the National Committee.

Mr. Jones moved the adoption of a Resolution authorizing and directing the creation of a promotional video. His motion was seconded by Mr. Illions.

The Resolution reads as follows:

RESOLUTION REGARDING THE CREATION AND PRICING OF PROMOTIONAL VIDEO TAPES

Resolved:

That the National Committee, does authorize the Public Relations Committee to do all things necessary to have a 30 minute video tape produced at the 2003 National Convention.

That the format of this tape would be a moderator asking questions of the Chairman, Vice Chairman and three other America First Party leaders.

That the purpose of this tape would be to educate the public and potential members at County meetings, State meetings, State Conventions, Flea Markets, Gun Shows, etc.

Upon completion, this tape will be sold to all AFP members at cost, plus postage, because it will be a Party Building tool.

Mr. Lovell moved to amend the Resolution to insert the words "once costs have been approved by the National Committee" after the word "necessary" in the first sentence. His amendment was seconded by Mr. O'Brian. By unanimous consent, the amendment was accepted.

Mr. Hey suggested that the Resolution should be committed for consideration by the Public Relations Committee. He stated that, based upon his experience producing thousands of hours of broadcast videos, such a video could well cost the party $10,000, and that it would be a shame for the party to "lock in" the specified format when a better and more appealing format for the video might be found with some study.

Mr. McClellan moved to commit the Resolution to the Public Relations Committee, the Party Building Committee, the Finance Committee, and the Operating Committee for thirty days. His motion was seconded by Mr. Clark and adopted by majority vote of the National Committee.

Mr. Hey moved that the National Committee stand in recess until April 1st, 2003 at 9:30 p.m. ET. His motion was seconded by Mr. White and adopted by majority vote of the National Committee.

The members of the National Committee reconvened at 9:30 p.m. ET Tuesday, April 1, 2003. The Secretary called the roll of members:

Present:

  • John Verser of Arkansas
  • Ron Teal and John Spooner of California
  • Wanda Weatherford of Colorado
  • Helen Leka of Connecticut
  • Phil Anderson and Diane Lovell of Georgia
  • John Clark and Virginia Clark of Maryland
  • Ryan Law of Minnesota
  • Nancy Blankenship of Missouri
  • Jeff Plott of North Carolina
  • Francis Winters of New Hampshire
  • Michael Illions and Richard Rossillo of New Jersey
  • Maureen Flannery, Bradley Maurer, and Jim Arft of New York
  • John Francis and Ward Chorpenning of Ohio
  • Sam Cross, George Stryker and David Thomas of Pennsylvania
  • George Pangborn of Texas
  • Rick Besanko and Chris Wenzel of Virginia
  • Frank Hackl of Wisconsin
  • Jon Hill of Massachusetts, Finance Committee Chairman
  • Mike O'Brian of Michigan, Platform Committee Chairman
  • James D. Jones of Tennessee, Party Building Chairman
  • Trey Golmon of Mississippi, Ballot Access Committee Chairman
  • Romelle Winters, Public Relations Committee Chairman
  • Maureen McHugh of Illinois, Treasurer
  • John Pittman Hey of Mississippi, Secretary
  • Gene Lovell of Georgia, Vice-chairman
  • Dan Charles of Colorado, Chairman

Absent:

  • Vincent Wallgren of California
  • Larry Carroll and Marcel Dietze of Colorado
  • George Radzwillas and Floyd Atchley of Connecticut
  • Martin McClellan and Gaurav Ahuja of Florida
  • Dave Doyle and Jim Monagan of Iowa
  • Tim Lohrmann, Jim Cox and Miles Cunningham of Idaho
  • Daniel Morrison and William Lowry of Michigan
  • Cleve Pate and Norman Kent of North Carolina
  • Allen Finger of New Jersey
  • James Bunosky of Ohio
  • Karen Faye Wilson, Patrick Wilson and Melvin Johnson of Oregon
  • Harrison Mullendore and Shauna Mullendore of Utah
  • Pat Owens and Scott Trindl of Wisconsin

James Edwards of Tennessee, Tom White of Massachusetts, and Warren Baldwin of Tennessee joined the meeting after the roll call had been taken.

A quorum being present, the Chairman called the meeting back to order at 9:40 p.m. ET.

The National Committee meeting was opened with the Pledge of Allegiance. Mr. Chorpenning delivered the invocation.

By unanimous consent, the Credentials Report was reopened for amendment.

The Secretary reported receiving notice of the resignation of William Lowry as National Committee member from Michigan. He moved the amendment of the Certified List of National Committee members to strike Mr. Lowry from the list. His motion was seconded by Mr. O'Brian and adopted by unanimous vote.

The Secretary reported receiving notice of the resignation of Harrison Mullendore and Shauna Mullendore as National Committee members from Utah. He moved the amendment of the Certified List of National Committee members to strike Mr. and Mrs. Mullendore from the list. His motion was seconded by Mr. O'Brian and adopted by unanimous vote.

There being no further credentialing matters, Mr. Stryker moved the adoption of the Certified List of National Committee members as amended in its entirety. His motion was seconded by Mr. Hill and adopted by unanimous vote of the National Committee.

The Secretary reported that the National Committee consists of 61 members.

Mr. Hey moved the adoption of a Resolution in support of our Troops and opposing the War in Iraq. His motion was seconded by Mr. Hill.

Mr. Spooner proposed an amendment to insert between the words "elected leaders" the words "representatives and" in the fourth paragraph from the last. By unanimous consent, his amendment was adopted.

Mr. Pangborn proposed an amendment to replace the word "support" in the last paragraph of the resolution with the words "pray for". His amendment was seconded by Mr. White.

After some discussion, the question was called, and a roll call vote was taken:

Voting for the amendment: Golmon, Hill, Law, Francis, Cross, Stryker and Pangborn.

Voting against the amendment: Lovell, Hey, McHugh, Mrs. Winters, Edwards, O'Brian, Verser, Spooner, Weatherford, Leka, Anderson, Mrs. Lovell, Clark, Mrs. Clark, Blankenship, Plott, Winters, Rossillo, Illions, Flannery, Maurer, Arft, Chorpenning, Thomas, Baldwin, Besanko, Wenzel, and Hackl.

Abstaining: White.

The amendment was therefore rejected.

Mr. White proposed an amendment to add a reference to the Pope's opposition to the war. His amendment was seconded by Mr. Jones.

After some discussion, the question was called, and a roll call vote was taken:

Voting for the Amendment: Hill, Jones, Verser, Mrs. Lovell, White, Arft, Francis, Cross, Stryker and Hackl.

Voting against the Amendment: Lovell, Hey, McHugh, Golmon, Mrs. Winters, Edwards, O'Brian, Spooner, Weatherford, Leka, Anderson, Clark, Mrs. Clark, Law, Blankenship, Plott, Winters, Rossillo, Illions, Flannery, Maurer, Chorpenning, Thomas, Baldwin, Besanko and Wenzel

Abstaining: Pangborn.

The amendment was therefore rejected.

The Resolution as amended reads as follows:

RESOLUTION IN SUPPORT OF THE TROOPS AND IN OPPOSITION TO THE POLICY THAT ENDANGERS BOTH THEM AND THE PEACE

Whereas, At the Founding Convention of the America First Party the convention body did pass a Resolution stating the party's opposition to an undeclared war against Iraq and condemning the current administration for its efforts to move our country towards illegal and immoral military conflict; and,

Whereas, In the intervening months, the President has presented no evidence that the state of Iraq has any intention or capability to attack the United States of America or her people; and,

Whereas, In the intervening months, the President has presented no evidence of any substantial connection between Iraq and those who attacked us on September 11, 2001 or other terrorists that threaten the United States of America; and,

Whereas, In the intervening months, the President has presented no evidence that the state of Iraq has obtained weapons of mass destruction for any use other than its own; and,

Whereas, In the intervening months, the President, the CIA Director, and other administration officials have stated repeatedly that military action against the state of Iraq will likely result in increased terrorist activity directed at the American people and may assist recruitment by terrorist organizations; and,

Whereas, Our Nation's Founders created a system of government wherein the military is under civilian control, with the power to declare war granted solely to Congress and the power to command the troops residing solely in the hands of the President in his role as Commander-In-Chief; and,

Whereas, The United States Armed Forces are composed of volunteers, true heroes and patriots, who have dedicated themselves to protect our Constitution and our people; and,

Whereas, the making of war by the United States of America is justified when the safety and security of our people and our homeland are imperiled; and,

Whereas, We acknowledge that the current Iraqi regime is a brutal and murderous dictatorship, that is a threat to the well being of its own people and may be to its neighbors as well; and,

Whereas, Congress has not declared war upon the state of Iraq and does not have the constitutional authority to delegate that power to any other branch of government;

Now Therefore Be It Resolved by the America First National Committee on this First day of April in the Year of Our Lord Two-Thousand and Three:

That, We enter this dark period in American history with the full knowledge that our brave fighting men and women of the United States Armed Forces will continue to demonstrate their courage, skill, loyalty, and honorable nature, and shall comport themselves with charity and care, making every effort to avoid unleashing their war making skills on innocent civilians; and,

That, It is both an immoral and unconstitutional misuse of the brave fighting men and women of the United States Armed Forces to commit them to battle without proper constitutional authority; and,

That, It is both an immoral and unconstitutional misuse of the brave fighting men and women of the United States Armed Forces to commit them to battle in Iraq for the benefit of other nations or peoples, or to enforce the resolutions of the United Nations; and,

That, It is both an immoral and unconstitutional misuse of the brave fighting men and women of the United States Armed Forces to commit them to battle for the purpose of changing the leadership of Iraq, which has not threatened the United States of America or harmed its people; and,

That it is both an immoral and unconstitutional misuse of the brave fighting men and women of the United States Armed Forces to secure the borders of other nations while leaving our own borders unsecured; and,

That, The blame for this misuse of the brave fighting men and women of the United States Armed Forces falls squarely on the shoulders of our elected representatives and leaders and on those in our nation who support their decision; and,

That, We demand that our government refocus its national security efforts on securing our ports and our borders to prevent future terrorist attacks; and,

That, We demand that our government immediately locate and deport all illegal immigrants from our shores and institute an immediate moratorium on immigration for the present time, to prevent future terrorist attacks; and,

That, Though we oppose this unlawful war, we support the brave fighting men and women of the United States Armed Forces and pledge to use every peaceful and lawful method at our disposal to ensure their safe return to our shores.

The question on adoption of the main Resolution was called, and a roll call vote was taken:

For the Resolution: Lovell, Hey, McHugh, Golmon, Mrs. Winters, Hill, Jones, O'Brian, Verser, Spooner, Weatherford, Leka, Mrs. Lovell, White, Clark, Mrs. Clark, Law, Blankenship, Plott, Winters, Rossillo, Illions, Maurer, Arft, Chorpenning, Cross, Stryker, Baldwin, Besanko and Hackl.

Against the Resolution: Edwards, Anderson, Flannery, Francis, Thomas, Pangborn and Wenzel.

The Resolution was therefore adopted.

Mr. Hey moved the adoption of a Resolution Calling for Action to Protect our Troops in the Future. His motion was seconded by Mr. Law.

Mr. Clark proposed an amendment to replace the last two paragraphs of the Resolution with the text: "That, We seek to hold all elected officials accountable for their actions; and, That, We shall elect principled citizens who will not trample upon the United States Constitution, and the wisdom of our Nation's Founders by instituting a non-interventionist foreign policy." His amendment was seconded by Mrs. Clark.

After some discussion, the rule limiting debate was invoked.

Mr. White moved to extend debate on the amendment. His motion was seconded Mr. Besanko. A roll call vote was taken on the motion to extend debate:

To extend debate: Hey, McHugh, Golmon, Hill, White, Mrs. Clark, Law, Cross, Stryker, Thomas and Besanko.

Opposed to extending debate: Lovell, Jones, Edwards, O'Brian, Verser, Spooner, Weatherford, Leka, Anderson, Mrs. Lovell, Clark, Blankenship, Rossillo, Illions, Flannery, Maurer, Arft, Chorpenning, Baldwin, Pangborn, Wenzel and Hackl.

Abstaining: Francis.

The motion to extend debate was therefore rejected.

The question was called on the Clark amendment to the Resolution. A roll call vote was taken:

For the Clark amendment: Lovell, Jones, Edwards, Weatherford, Clark, Mrs. Clark, Rossillo, Illions, Pangborn and Wenzel.

Against the Clark amendment: Hey, McHugh, Golmon, Mrs. Winters, Hill, Verser, Spooner, Anderson, White, Law, Blankenship, Winters, Maurer, Arft, Chorpenning, Cross, Stryker, Thomas, Baldwin and Besanko.

Abstaining: O'Brian, Leka, Mrs. Lovell, Flannery and Hackl.

The amendment was therefore rejected.

Mr. Illions moved an amendment to strike the paragraph that contained a reference to the Joint Chiefs of Staff. His amendment was seconded by Mr. Lovell.

After some debate, the question was called and a roll call vote was taken:

For the Illions amendment: Lovell, Jones, Edwards, Anderson, Mrs. Lovell, Rossillo, Illions, Flannery, Maurer, Arft and Wenzel.

Against the Illions amendment: Hey, McHugh, Golmon, Mrs. Winters, Hill, Verser, Spooner, White, Law, Plott, Winters, Chorpenning, Cross, Baldwin, Pangborn, Besanko, and Hackl.

Abstaining: O'Brian, Weatherford, Leka, Clark, Mrs. Clark, Blankenship and Thomas.

The Illions amendment was therefore rejected.

Mr. Illions proposed an amendment to substitute language for several paragraphs of the Resolution. His amendment would strike the last five paragraphs of the Resolution and replace them with the following language:

That, We demand that upon conclusion of the war and the safe return of our troops, an inquiry be conducted determining that proper procedures were followed by Congress as dictated in the US Constitution regarding the use of Military troops for combat; and,

That, regardless of finding(s) and as specifically relates to the power to declare war, Congress shall remove all ambiguity from current legislation and Constitutional Amendment in order to restrict this awesome power through restoration of [Article 1; Section 8] of the Constitution of the United States of America to it's original state.

The two hour time limit on the meeting was reached. The Chairman explained that the rules required that the National Committee vote to recess, adjourn, or extend the meeting.

Mr. Jones moved that the National Committee adjourn. His motion was seconded by Mr. White. A roll call vote was taken:

In favor of adjournment: Lovell, Jones, Edwards, O'Brian, Spooner, Weatherford, Leka, Anderson, Mrs. Lovell, White, Plott, Rossillo, Illions, Flannery, Chorpenning, Baldwin and Hackl.

Opposed to adjournment: Hey, McHugh, Golmon, Mrs. Winters, Hill, Verser, Clark, Mrs. Clark, Law, Blankenship, Winters, Arft, Cross, Stryker, Thomas, Pangborn, Besanko and Wenzel.

The motion to Adjourn was therefore rejected.

Mr. Besanko moved to extend the meeting. His motion was seconded by Mr. Hill, and a roll call vote was taken:

In favor of extension: Hey, McHugh, Golmon, Mrs. Winters, Hill, Verser, Clark, Mrs. Clark, Law, Winters, Arft, Cross, Stryker, Thomas, Pangborn, Besanko and Wenzel.

Opposed to extension: Lovell, Jones, Edwards, O'Brian, Spooner, Weatherford, Leka, Anderson, Mrs. Lovell, White, Blankenship, Plott, Rossillo, Illions, Flannery, Chorpenning, Baldwin and Hackl.

The motion to extend the meeting was therefore rejected.

The Chairman pointed out that the meeting was in deadlock due to the faulty language adopted in the Debate limit rule at the March 18th meeting. Unless somebody could propose a motion that would be accepted by the body, the meeting would remain in limbo.

Mr. Hill moved to extend the meeting. His motion was seconded by Mr. Besanko, and a roll call vote was taken.

In favor of extension: Hey, McHugh, Golmon, Mrs. Winters, Hill, Verser, Clark, Mrs. Clark, Law, Blankenship, Winters, Arft, Cross, Stryker, Thomas, Pangborn, Besanko and Wenzel.

Opposed to extension: Lovell, Jones, Edwards, O'Brian, Spooner, Weatherford, Leka, Anderson, Mrs. Lovell, White, Plott, Rossillo, Illions, Chorpenning, Baldwin and Hackl.

The motion to extend the meeting was therefore adopted.

A motion was made to close debate on the Illions amendment by Mr. Jones. The motion was sustained by a greater than two thirds vote.

Mr. Hey made a point of order that the Illions amendment violates the Constitution of the Party. He stated that the language of the Illions amendment that an "inquiry be conducted determining that proper procedures were followed by Congress as dictated in the US Constitution regarding the use of Military troops for combat" explicitly contradicts the party platform, which states that troops may only be used upon a Declaration of War by Congress, which did not take place in this case.

Mr. Hey further argued that the Party Constitution bars the National Committee from adopting any resolution which conflicts with the Constitution or the Platform, and that clearly, the Illions amendment does conflict with the Platform.

The Chairman ruled that the Illions amendment as worded contradicted the party Platform and thus was unconstitutional.

Mrs. Lovell moved to amend the Resolution with the same language as proposed by the Illions amendment, but replacing the words "determining that" with the words "determining whether". Her amendment was seconded by Mr. Lovell.

After two persons spoke in favor of the amendment, Mr. White raised a point of order that three people had spoken in favor of the amendment, counting Mrs. Lovell, who had stated that she would not speak in favor of her amendment because the thing spoke for itself. Mr. White argued that Mrs. Lovell spoke in favor of the amendment when she stated that the amendment speaks for itself.

The Chairman ruled that Mrs. Lovell had not spoken in favor of the amendment and should not be counted against the three allocated speakers for the amendment.

Mr. White appealed the ruling of the chairman. The ruling of the Chairman was upheld by majority vote.

After debate was exhausted, a roll call vote was taken.

For the Lovell amendment: Lovell, Jones, Edwards, O'Brian, Weatherford, Leka, Anderson, Mrs. Lovell, Clark, Mrs. Clark, Blankenship, Rossillo, Illions, Baldwin, Pangborn and Wenzel.

Against the Lovell amendment: Hey, McHugh, Golmon, Mrs. Winters, Hill, Verser, Spooner, White, Law, Winters, Arft, Cross, Stryker, and Besanko.

Abstaining: Hackl and Thomas.

The Lovell amendment was therefore adopted.

Mr. Pangborn moved to close debate on the Resolution. His motion was seconded by Mr. Clark. A roll call vote was taken.

For closing debate: Jones, Edwards, O'Brian, Spooner, Weatherford, Leka, Anderson, Mrs. Lovell, Clark, Mrs. Clark, Blankenship, Rossillo, Illions, Baldwin, Pangborn, Wenzel and Hackl.

Against closing debate: Lovell, Hey, McHugh, Golmon, Mrs. Winters, Hill, Verser, White, Law, Winters, Arft, Cross, Stryker, Thomas and Besanko.

A two thirds vote being required to cut off debate, the motion to close debate was rejected.

Some members spoke in favor of the Resolution as amended, insisting that it was greatly improved by the amendments which moderated the demands of the original Resolution. Other members spoke against the amended Resolution, arguing that it had been watered down so much as to accomplish little.

All time for debate having expired under the debate limit rule, Mr. White moved to extend debate. His motion failed by majority vote.

Mr. White moved to table the Resolution. His motion to table was seconded by Mr. Stryker. A roll call vote was taken.

In favor of tabling the Resolution: Hill, Jones, Spooner, White, Arft, Cross and Stryker.

Opposed to tabling the Resolution: Lovell, Hey, McHugh, Golmon, Mrs. Winters, Edwards, O'Brian, Verser, Weatherford, Anderson, Mrs. Lovell, Clark, Mrs. Clark, Law, Blankenship, Winters, Rossillo, Illions, Thomas, Baldwin, Pangborn, Besanko, Wenzel and Hackl.

The motion to table was therefore rejected.

The resolution as amended reads as follows:

RESOLUTION CALLING FOR ACTION TO PROTECT OUR TROOPS IN THE FUTURE

Whereas, The America First National Committee has adjudged the War Against Iraq to be an unnecessary, improper, illegal, unconstitutional, and immoral misuse of the power and might of the United States Armed Forces and the brave men and women who have volunteered to serve as protectors and defenders of the United States of America and her people; and,

Whereas, The America First National Committee has adjudged the War Against Iraq sets a dangerous precedent for our nation that must be resisted and allowed never to happen again; and,

Whereas, It is only through assuring that the brave fighting men and women of the United States Armed Forces are not misused that we can best support their mission to protect and defend the United States of America;

Now Therefore Be It Resolved by the America First National Committee on this First day of April in the Year of Our Lord Two-Thousand and Three:

That, We demand that no actions be taken that would endanger the lives and well being of our troops currently involved in combat; and,

That, We demand that upon conclusion of the war and the safe return of our troops, an inquiry be conducted determining whether proper procedures were followed by Congress as dictated in the US Constitution regarding the use of Military troops for combat; and,

That, regardless of finding(s) and as specifically relates to the power to declare war, Congress shall remove all ambiguity from current legislation and Constitutional Amendment in order to restrict this awesome power through restoration of [Article 1; Section 8] of the Constitution of the United States of America to it's original state.

The question was called on final adoption of the Resolution as amended. The resolution was rejected by majority vote of the National Committee.

There being no further business, on motion made by Mr. Besanko and seconded by Mr. Illions, the Chairman declared the meeting adjourned.

Respectfully submitted,
______________________
John Pittman Hey
National Secretary
America First National Committee

 
 
   
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