Minutes of the America First National Committee
Tuesday, October 12, 2004
BE IT REMEMBERED that the America First National Committee met on Tuesday, October 12, 2004 at 9 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, pursuant to the Resolution of the Operating Committee adopted on September 28, 2004.
The Chairman led the National Committee meeting in the Pledge of Allegiance.
Mr. Hey delivered the Invocation.
The Secretary called the roll of National Committee members.
- Dan Charles of Colorado, National Chairman
- Martin McClellan of Florida
- Maureen McHugh of Illinois
- Tim Lohrmann of Idaho
- Tom White of Massachusetts
- Jon Hill of Massachusetts, National Vice-Chairman
- Nancy Blankenship of Missouri
- Romelle Winters of New Hampshire
- Jim Arft of New York
- Bradley Maurer of New York
- Ward Chorpenning of Ohio
- Joe Spitzig of Ohio
- David Thomas of Pennsylvania
- Sam Cross of Pennsylvania
- Frank Hackl of Wisconsin
- John Pittman Hey of Mississippi, National Secretary and Treasurer
- Larry Carroll of Colorado
- Joe Hoffman of Illinois
Trey Golmon of Mississippi and Greg Roberts of Missouri joined the meeting after the roll call had been taken.
Mr. Peter Browning, nominee for the position of National Committee from the state of Florida, was also in attendance.
A Quorum being present, the Chairman called the meeting to order at 9:06 p.m. EDT.
The National Secretary delivered the Credentials Report. He reported receiving a notice of election of Mr. Peter Browning to represent the state of Florida on the National Committee. The mandatory thirty day period having not yet run, no action can be taken on his election at this meeting.
Mrs. Winters moved the adoption of the Credentials Report. The motion was seconded by Mr. White and adopted by unanimous vote.
Mr. McClellan moved the adoption of the Agenda. His motion was seconded by Mrs. Winters. The Agenda was adopted by unanimous vote.
Mr. Hey moved to amend the Agenda by replacing it. The amendment was seconded by Mr. White. The amendment reads as follows:
RESOLUTION TO AMEND AGENDA FOR OCTOBER 12 MEETING
Resolved, that the Agenda for this meeting be amended by replacing the published agenda with the following agenda, beginning with the new item 6:
1. Pledge of Allegiance
3. Call to Order
4. Credentialing Report
5. Adopt Agenda
6. Chair's Report shall be limited to TWO minutes
7. Secretary's Request for Approval of Minutes -- August 3-17, 2004 minutes
8. Treasurer's Report of Party Financial Status
9. Business Referred by Committee
a. Resolution on Letterhead submitted by the Finance Committee
b. Resolution to Contribute $500 to the Committee to Elect Tom White.
10. Introduction of Endorsement Process by Chair
11. Statements by Mr. Peroutka and Mr. Baldwin (15 minutes total)
12. Question and Answer period
13. Election of Possible Endorsee (Mr. Peroutka -vs- "None of the Above")
14. Endorsement Resolution, if necessary
The amendment was adopted by unanimous vote.
On the question of the adoption of the Agenda as amended, the Agenda was adopted by unanimous vote of the National Committee.
The Chairman delivered his report. He has continued to network with members of the immigration caucus in Congress, including Mr. Tancredo. He has helped prepare several press releases, and has assisted in raising some donations for the campaign of Mr. White of Massachusetts. The Chairman urged the members to support Mr. White in his campaign.
The Secretary reminded the members that he had previously circulated draft minutes for the August 3 and 17, 2004 meeting of the National Committee. Mr. Hey moved the adoption of the minutes. His motion was seconded by Mrs. Winters and adopted by unanimous vote.
The Treasurer referred the Committee to the full Report that has been published on the Reflector and on the Agenda web page. The current account balance is $3694.77, and there are no outstanding obligations to be paid. The Third Quarter report to the Federal Election Commission has been filed and may be reviewed on the FEC web site.
The Treasurer moved the adoption of the Treasurer's Report. The motion was seconded by Mr. White and adopted by unanimous vote.
A Resolution referred by the Finance Committee was moved by Mr. Hill. The Resolution was seconded by Mrs. McHugh and reads as follows:
RESOLUTION TO AUTHORIZE THE EXPENDITURE OF FUNDS FOR THE PRODUCTION OF STATIONERY
Whereas, the National Secretary is urgently in need of Party letterhead to service the Party's correspondence needs,
Therefore, be it resolved that up to $250 be allocated to purchase, without delay, 10,000 pieces of the Party's two-color letterhead.
The Resolution was adopted by unanimous vote.
A Resolution referred by the Finance Committee was moved by Mr. Hill. The Resolution was seconded by Mrs. Winters and reads as follows:
RESOLUTION TO CONTRIBUTE TO THE CAMPAIGN OF TOM WHITE
Resolved by the America First National Committee, that a donation to the Committee to Elect Tom White in the amount of $500 is hereby approved.
The Resolution was adopted by unanimous vote, Messrs. Hill and White abstaining.
A time of questions was taken for the Chairman and the Treasurer.
Mr. Michael A. Peroutka, the Constitution Party candidate for President, joined the meeting. Also joining with him was Mr. Scott Whiteman, his campaign manager.
The Chairman reminded the members of the procedure set forth in the Party rules regarding the endorsement process.
The Chairman introduced the members of the National Committee.
Mr. Peroutka addressed the National Committee. He described the belief that our rights come from our Creator as a uniquely American view of government. This view contrasts with the popular and modern notion that Democracy is the source of moral and ethical authority. He described how our Constitution recognizes that source of justice and right as resting outside of, and superior to, the government, its leaders, or even the democratic will of the people themselves. He called for the return of the American view of government to our society and our politics. Neither of the two establishment political parties understands Constitutional governance. Mr. Peroutka expressed a firm commitment to the rights of the unborn. He stated that the Constitution can only be restored when we begin to discharge judges from office who will not follow the law. He described his support for the repeal of the 16th Amendment and abolition of the Internal Revenue Service. He declared his willingness to enforce our nation's immigration laws and uphold the Second Amendment. He deplores the war in Iraq along lines familiar to the members of our party.
Mr. Peroutka entertained questions from the members of the National Committee.
All questions having been exhausted, Mr. Peroutka and Mr. Whiteman left the meeting.
The Chairman ruled that, under the rules adopted by the National Committee, the number of state ballots upon which Mr. Peroutka's name appears falls short of the required 75% of our affiliated state parties. The Chairman noted that, at the time of Mr. Peroutka's application for our endorsement, he was on a sufficient number of ballots, but he had been taken off of several of them for seemingly frivolous reasons. The Chairman suggested that the rule could be suspended by a two thirds vote of the body.
Mr. Hey moved that the National Committee suspend its requirement for Ballot Access so that Mr. Peroutka may be considered. Mr. Maurer seconded the motion.
Mr. Hey stated, in defense of his motion, that the America First National Committee should not allow itself to be hamstrung by the arbitrary and capricious actions of state governments as they conspire to restrict ballot access for legitimate third party candidates. The motion was adopted by overwhelming vote, with one vote against and one abstention. The Chairman declared the motion adopted and the rule suspended.
The election was held by roll-call vote. The following votes were recorded:
Voting for Mr. Peroutka - McHugh, White, Hill, Blankenship, Roberts, Golmon, Winters, Arft, Maurer, Chorpenning, Spitzig, Thomas, Cross, Hackl and Hey.
Voting for None of the Above - McClellan and Lohrmann.
The Chairman abstained as required by the Party Constitution.
Mr. Peroutka was selected as the potential endorsee of the Party.
Mr. Hey moved a Resolution to Endorse Michael Peroutka. The Resolution was seconded by Mr. Chorpenning.
Mr. Arft moved to amend the Resolution. His amendment was seconded by Mr. Maurer. After some discussion, the Amendment was withdrawn.
After consultation with Mr. Arft and other members, Mr. Hey moved to amend the Resolution by replacing the endorsement paragraph. The Amendment was seconded by Mr. Chorpenning. The Amendment was adopted by unanimous consent.
The Resolution, as amended, reads as follows:
RESOLUTION ENDORSING MICHAEL A. PEROUTKA FOR PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES
Whereas the America First Party has since its founding adopted a strategy of focusing its resources on elections we can win or affect; and
Whereas the America First Party has therefore decided not to enter the 2004 Presidential race; and
Whereas neither Mr. Bush nor Mr. Kerry seek to secure our borders, a critical first step to ending the threat of terrorism, and both support open-border and amnesty policies by whatever Orwellian word games they play; and
Whereas both Mr. Bush and Mr. Kerry promote trade policies that harm American workers and their families and engage our workers in a great race to the bottom of the wage scale for the benefit of multinational corporations; and
Whereas neither Mr. Bush nor Mr. Kerry will work to promote our unique American culture and protect the most innocent among us from dismemberment by either the abortionist or the embryonic stem cell researcher; and
Whereas both Mr. Bush and Mr. Kerry lacked the judgment to recognize that Saddam Hussein may have been a threat to his neighbors and own people, but had no connection to the 9/11 attacks upon our nation and was no threat to the United States of America and her people; and
Whereas both Mr. Bush and Mr. Kerry have misused the brave men and women of the United States Armed Forces by invading and occupying Iraq and have thus not supported our troops; and
Whereas both Mr. Bush and Mr. Kerry support the notion that the President alone should have the authority to take our nation to war, instead of the method based on the wisdom of our nation's Founders and embedded in our beloved Constitution--which relies on the judgment of the 435 members of the House of Representatives and the 100 members of the Senate; and
Whereas neither Mr. Bush nor Mr. Kerry can be counted on to otherwise adhere to the limitations on the power of the federal government contained in the plain text of the United States Constitution, to support or respect the family, or to respect the God given rights of every American to live in freedom and with faith; and
Whereas neither Mr. Bush nor Mr. Kerry, whosoever may win this election, endorse policies consistent with the Principles and Platform of the America First Party; and
Whereas the policies promoted by Mr. Bush and Mr. Kerry are substantially closer to those of each other than those in the best interests of the American people and it therefore makes little difference which of them is elected; and
Whereas the America First National Committee has a responsibility to stand up to the misguided, the negligent and the corrupt; and
Whereas the members of the America First National Committee must fulfill our responsibility to our fellow countrymen by making our best recommendation as to whom to vote for President; and
Whereas, Michael A. Peroutka is a dedicated Constitutionalist; and
Whereas, Mr. Peroutka's running mate, Chuck Baldwin, is a true patriot;
Now therefore be it Resolved by the America First National Committee:
That the America First National Committee accepts the endorsement of the Principles and Platform of the America First Party by Constitution Party Presidential Candidate Michael A. Peroutka; and
That we hold that pro-life, pro-family, pro-Constitution political parties have a responsibility to extend a hand of friendship and support to candidates of political parties of similar outlook, when those parties' candidates are not in competition with each other, regardless of whether those other parties reciprocate or not; and
That the America First National Committee does hereby endorse and recommend that its members and all other citizens of good conscience and principle cast their vote for Michael A. Peroutka and Chuck Baldwin for President and Vice President of the United States, because it is the right thing to do; and
That in making this endorsement for President of the United States of America, the America First Party is not endorsing the Preamble, Platform, Structure, Party Building Strategy, or Electoral Strategy of the Constitution Party.
After some debate, and the question being called, the Chairman ruled that the Resolution was adopted. Mr. McClellan requested a roll call vote.
The roll was called and the following vote was taken:
For the Resolution: McClellan, McHugh, White, Hill, Blankenship, Roberts, Golmon, Winters, Arft, Maurer, Chorpenning, Spitzig, Thomas, Cross, Hackl and Hey.
Against the Resolution: Lohrmann.
The Chairman abstained as required by the Party Constitution.
The Resolution, having received the affirmative vote of more than two thirds of the entire National Committee, was proclaimed adopted.
The Chairman begged leave of the National Committee that the minutes reflect that his preference, had he been entitled to cast a vote, would have been in support of the Resolution. There being no objection, the minutes do hereby so reflect.
There being no further business, Mr. Chorpenning moved that the National Committee adjourn. The motion was seconded by Mr. White and adopted by unanimous vote. The Chairman declared the meeting adjourned at 11:09 p.m. EDT.
John Pittman Hey
America First National Committee