Platform of the America First Party
(Adopted by the delegates at the Founding Convention, Orlando, Florida, August 8 - 11, 2002; as amended by the 2006 Convention, Cincinnati, Ohio, June 3, 2006; as amended by the National Committee, July 17, 2006; as amended by the National Committee, October 16, 2006)
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PART I: PRESERVE AND PROTECT OUR PEOPLE AND OUR SOVEREIGNTY
Under our Constitution, foreign policy can only serve the lawful best interests of the United States Government and its citizens. The Constitution empowers and limits the federal government; therefore all treaties, alliances and agreements must be subordinate to the Constitution.
The America First Party pledges its total allegiance to the Constitutional Republic of the United States of America. The America First Party believes that interpreting the Constitution must be based on the Framers' precise words and the meaning intended at that time. The America First Party totally rejects the concept that the Constitution is a "living document," in which the meaning can be interpreted and altered as society changes. This concept is not only seductive, but totally against the intentions of its Framers. If the citizens of this nation wish to revise or change a portion of the Constitution there is a provision provided by the Framers called the Constitutional Amendment. It is very interesting that the citizens of this nation have found it necessary to amend the Constitution only twenty-seven times since adoption of the Constitution in 1788.
Any alliance, treaty or agreement that commits this nation to participate in foreign conflicts subverts our Constitution and the independence of this nation, and is therefore illegal. The Constitution of the United States delegates the authority and responsibility for the common defense and the general welfare of the United States to the Congress - not the President. Only Congress-not the President, the UN, NATO or any other organization-can commit United States armed forces into any armed conflict or war with a declaration of war. All security alliances must be reviewed by the U.S. Congress to determine if they still serve the best interests of this nation and its people. The Constitution does not empower the Federal Government to police the world or protect other nations. The Constitution does not allow our nation's armed forces ever to be under foreign command, which has become common practice under present UN and NATO deployment. The Constitution requires that the President of the United States shall be the Commander in Chief of our nation's armed forces. It does not provide any means for the President to delegate this authority to any domestic or foreign person or organization, as has happened with NATO and the UN forces of late. Both the UN and the NATO treaty claim authority to direct our nation's armed forces into a war [armed conflict] without the Constitutional requirement of Congress declaring war. Since NATO no longer serves a defensive purpose for the United States, it is therefore time that we withdraw from NATO and permit Europe the task of defending itself.
The United States must withdraw from the United Nations immediately and require the UN headquarters to relocate out of the United States. Our participation as a member nation in this organization was never constitutional and now places our nation's sovereignty in extreme peril. The United States must promptly withdraw from all international monetary and financial institutions such as the International Monetary Fund (IMF), World Bank, WTO, NAFTA, GATT, etc. These institutions violate the meaning and intent of our Constitution.
Some of these organizations also claim the unconstitutional power to levy tax on the United States Government and the American citizens. The U.S. Federal Government does not have any Constitutional authority to tax the American people or use any U.S. funds for the specific purpose of providing aid of any kind to foreign governments. Therefore, the United States Congress will terminate immediately all programs of foreign aid, whether military or non-military, to any foreign government, or to any international organization, including the United Nations, the IMF, the World Bank, and other similar institutions.
The America First Party is totally opposed and unequivocally rejects the World Court because it violates and claims authority to overrule the United States Constitution. The World Court is just another nice-sounding world organization on the surface, which proclaims to do good and honorable things, but has the sinister and evil power to end the sovereignty of all nations. The America First Party is totally against a New World Order or any one-world government, not simply because it is unconstitutional and would end this nation's sovereignty, but because it will end up enslaving all people except the elite.
Special Role of the 2nd Amendment
The America First Party shall strongly support the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution. America is one of the few nations on earth with the right to keep and bear arms. That right is largely responsible for our independence and sovereignty. Our enemies envy us our success and would deny it so that we become reduced to their level.
As a foundation block of the Constitution, it is imperative this freedom remain unhindered so our liberty and independence remain unfettered. The America First Party must actively work to impeach any politician who would deny the Second amendment since he is not upholding his oath "…to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States," and would allow the tyranny of government to prevail. The Second Amendment is the ultimate persuader against a politician or party intent upon domestic mischief or skullduggery.
Support for the 2nd Amendment
We, The America First Party, wholeheartedly support 2nd Amendment rights as guaranteed by the United States Constitution and as given to us by Almighty God. We hold this to be an individual's right. No law is legitimate that restricts this right. In keeping with this belief, we, The America First Party, will call for repeal of all Federal Gun legislation and nullification of all state laws that are not in accordance with an individual's Constitutional right to keep and bear arms.
The power to regulate immigration is a plenary power of Congress under Article 1, Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution. The America First Party therefore advocates the following policies regarding immigration:
Recognizing that the federal government has conspicuously failed to secure our nation's borders against illegal immigration and that its failure undermines the rule of law, violates our national sovereignty, and imposes intolerable social and fiscal burdens on the American people, the America First Party supports:
- Not rewarding illegal immigrants for breaking the law by granting them temporary or permanent legal status (amnesty).
- Adopting the core recommendation of the U.S. Commission on Immigration Reform to eliminate the easy access to jobs that attract illegal aliens by requiring the verifiable proof that the prospective employee is a United States citizen or a properly registered alien.
- Imposing sanctions including the suspension of visa privileges and cutoff of foreign aid to any country that refuses to cooperate with the U.S. either in the repatriation of its illegal alien nationals, or in preventing aliens from illegally entering the U.S. through its territory.
- Effective interior enforcement of U.S. immigration laws to insure that all illegal aliens identified or apprehended by law enforcement agencies are promptly deported.
- Use of the Army, National Guard, or any other branch of the armed forces that may be required to help the U.S. Border Patrol secure our borders against illegal crossing by aliens, drug smugglers, or other criminals.
- Adoption of a law clarifying that the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution does not give automatic U.S. citizenship to a child born on U.S. soil to illegal alien parents.
Encourage Illegal Immigrant Departure
The America First Party holds that illegal immigration is a grave threat to our Constitutional Republic, our Environment, our National Security, and our Way of Life. Permitting these lawbreakers to remain in our country defiles the notion of adherence to the rule of law. We are providing amnesty to those who broke our laws by entering and remaining in our nation, if only through the continuation of the present policy of neglect.
While our party advocates the mass deportation of these lawbreakers, we recognize that much of this result can be achieved by encouraging illegal aliens to voluntarily depart. To encourage such activity, we advocate rational policies to achieve this end. We hold that these steps are necessary, prudent, and do not violate the civil rights of any law abiding citizen or resident of our nation. Any person who is in this country illegally is, by definition, not law abiding.
We therefore propose the following be enacted into law:
- Ensure that persons attending schools and universities on student visas are enrolled in and attending classes and that their performance and coursework will lead to graduation in the field they have been admitted to study.
- Require proof of citizenship to register to vote and revoke the registration of anyone who fails to vote in two consecutive elections.
- Require proof of citizenship or legal residency to be issued or renew a driver's or other license and indicate upon the license the status of the person.
- Require proof of citizenship or legal residency in order to receive government services, except life saving medical care and police, fire, and rescue services.
- Require proof of citizenship, legal residency, or legal visa status of longer than three months for a person to rent or purchase residential property or maintain accounts in banks or other U. S. financial institutions.
- Require that those who cannot meet these requirements be turned over to the federal Immigration and Naturalization Service, and that should a private business evade the enforcement of these requirements upon a person who is in this country illegally, then that business shall be fined in a manner so as to deter such laxity.
- Any person responsible for waiving such requirements in the case of an illegal immigrant shall have committed a felony crime that shall result in both a fine and jail sentences for each individual infraction.
- Impose and enforce stiff penalties for the production, distribution, or possession of fraudulent identification.
- Require proof of citizenship or legal residence to transfer funds to recipients or accounts in foreign nations.
- Oppose the implementation of a National ID system as a violation of state and individual rights.
While we cherish and honor America's proud immigrant history, we must recognize that our nation is no longer an unsettled frontier. Immigration has escalated to over one million each year to the highest level in American history.
Because of immigration the Census Bureau projects that U.S. population will exceed 400 million by 2050. A population that big is certain to result in vast increases in traffic congestion, overcrowded schools, urban sprawl, pressure on energy and water resources, and dwindling wilderness and wildlife areas. It will degrade or destroy our American quality of life. Therefore, the America First Party supports:
- A temporary ban or "time out" on all immigration, except for spouses and minor children of U.S. citizens, for a period of ten years, thereafter restoring America's traditional level of legal immigration at a limit of 250,000 per year.
- Barring the importation of temporary foreign workers that always reduce the wages, working conditions, and incomes of American workers.
- Reforming the visa preference system to give priority to reuniting nuclear family members such as spouses and minor children, and ending the chain migration of extended family relatives.
- A national campaign to assimilate new immigrants by teaching them the English language and encouraging them to learn about American history, government, and civic culture.
- Re-implementation and enforcement of immigration sponsorship policy or proof of financial viability.
Assimilation and Cultural Identity
The America First Party supports passage of legislation designating English as the official language of the United States. The United States shall, in all instances, restrict itself to the English language. Citizenship shall not be granted to anyone that is not at least marginally proficient in speaking, reading and understanding the English language, the U.S. Constitution and our national history.
The United States of America is a Sovereign Republic, subject only to our Creator and not answering to any alien power or foreign potentate. It is therefore imperative that we zealously guard and unequivocally maintain the sovereignty of the United States under all circumstances. Any treaty or alliance that surrenders national sovereignty is, by law and our Constitution, utterly null and void. Any attempt to establish a global government is a direct threat to our Sovereign Republic and endangers our Constitution and will be vigorously opposed.
We are completely committed to defending the permanent liberty and independence of the United States of America. Due to both overt and covert efforts to subvert our national sovereignty, the United Nations is considered a hostile enemy of this Constitutional Republic. Therefore, the UN is to be removed from within our national borders along with its entities such as the International Criminal Court (ICC), and the World Trade Organization (WTO). Our membership with any such organization should be totally severed.
UN ownership of land within our borders will be prohibited and funding or any other support of the UN or any of its agencies or entities by the United States government will be considered a criminal act.
Constitutional Use of the Military
The America First Party seeks to restore the sole right of Congress to declare war. The United States military will only be used to protect U.S. citizens, U.S. property and U.S. border integrity. Our troops will not participate under foreign leadership for any reason at any time. The United States military is only to be used when the United States and its people are under, or anticipated to be under, direct threat of invasion or aerial attack. If the United States or our property or borders are attacked or violated, the military shall be given license to seek out and destroy the enemy.
We oppose the use of the military against the America people. We also oppose efforts to repeal the protections of Posse Comitatus under the auspices of Homeland Security.
PART II: PROMOTE ECONOMIC GROWTH AND INDEPENDENCE
America is being bankrupted by a bloated federal bureaucracy that now squanders more of our tax dollars than at any point in our nation's history. We are an over-regulated, over-taxed, and over-governed society. The America First Party advocates a return to Constitutional compliance in the size, scope, and authority of the Federal government in the budgetary process by returning to full compliance with the Tenth Amendment.
The America First Party supports the following changes in budgetary policy:
- Pass a Balanced Budget Amendment
- The overall budget of each department of government, as well as each line item of the Federal budget shall be prioritized such that if unexpected costs arise, or revenue does not meet projections, there will be orderly retrenchment, thus preventing deficit spending.
- Pay down the Federal Debt as quickly as possible, consistent with honoring Federal commitments made to bondholders, until the principal balance is zero and American taxpayers no longer have to pay interest on the debt.
- Budget surpluses shall be applied in the following order of priority:
a. Eliminating the Federal debt;
b. Improvement of defensive military capabilities;
c. Funding tax reductions.
d. In no event shall budget surpluses be used to expand existing Federal entitlement programs or to create new ones.
- All Federal programs shall include in their enabling legislation
a. Cost estimates;
b. A mechanism for tracking actual costs;
c. Provisions for the orderly scaling back of the program if costs exceed estimates;
d. A clear statement of a quantifiable expected benefit which is expected to accrue to the taxpayers from the program;
e. A mechanism for measuring the benefit attainment actually realized. The executive branch shall be charged with publishing an annual report detailing the actual cost and attainment statistics for all programs. Any program that fails to deliver at least 75% of its stated benefit shall become null and void after two consecutive years of non-attainment.
- Review existing government programs every 5 years for cost effectiveness. Programs that are not cost effectively accomplishing their initial goals will be eliminated.
- Remove all trust fund balances from the budget deficit calculations, so that the true size of the federal deficit is made clear to the American people. Report all trust fund balances according to the same generally accepted accounting practices that businesses must comply with.
- Every Department of the Government shall be audited annually.
- As a sovereign Republic and a self-governing nation we call for the reestablishment of a United States Treasury Bank. Therefore, as provided for in their original charter, the privately owned Federal Reserve Banks shall be purchased by the United States government and United States Treasury Notes shall be reinstated, replacing Federal Reserve Notes as the official currency of the United States of America.
- As long as the United States has a national debt, a trade deficit, or unfunded long-term commitments to Social Security, it violates the fiduciary responsibility of the Federal government to our own people to make any loan or grant to any foreign entity. Therefore, the Federal government shall make no further loans or grants to foreign entities from taxpayer funds.
- Eliminate funding for the United Nations.
- Whereas the Federal government has no Constitutional authority to expend funds for the propagation of ideas, we call on Congress to eliminate funding for the National Endowment of the Arts, the National Endowment of the Humanities, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, and all similar activities buried within other Federal budget items. Furthermore, we call on Congress to dismantle the Department of Education and return the responsibility of our children's education to state and local control.
- Dismantle the Department of Housing and Urban Development.
- End corporate welfare and special interest subsidies.
- Whenever possible, services provided by the Federal government shall be supported by user fees. Such user fees shall be used to fund the service provided, and not be used as revenue sources for other programs.
Regulation of trade using tariffs and treaties, to promote the general welfare of the United States, is a fundamental Constitutional mandate. Eliminating trade deficits and protecting domestic production are paramount.
The America First Party advocates a Trade Policy that:
- Operates within the boundaries of the U.S. Constitution;
- Restores Congressional authority to regulate commerce;
- Safeguards American labor, health, safety and environmental standards from cheap imports;
- Eliminates trade deficits;
- Protects U.S. jobs and industry in order to ensure the blessings of liberty to all Americans and their posterity.
A vital national trade policy shall require:
- A strict "Buy American" policy that patronizes American made goods;
- A rigid ban on imported products of child, prison, or slave labor;
- U.S. ability to manufacture and stockpile all products vital to maintaining U.S. strategic military strength and national security;
- The ability to feed our own people;
- All food sold in the United States must be clearly labeled with the country of origin.
The America First Party will support candidates for federal office that support the following positions:
- All international trade agreements are in fact treaties and as such must be passed by a 2/3 super-majority in the U.S. Senate
- "Fast Track" trade negotiating authority shall not be abdicated to the Executive Branch
- A complete U.S. withdrawal from the following institutions: World Trade Organization (WTO), North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), International Monetary Fund (IMF), and World Bank
- Revocation of Most Favored Nation trade status from any nation that restricts the basic human rights of workers
- Required revenue tariffs on all foreign made goods sold in the United States to achieve balanced trade, and replace federal income taxes.
The above positions demonstrate that the economic process currently labeled as "free trade" actually represents a "race to the bottom." By adhering to the above positions, the United States will guarantee its ability to be self-sufficient through bilateral trade and negotiation with other nations.
The America First Party shall endeavor to direct the taxation policy of the nation and our state to that of one reflecting the original intent of the framers of the Constitution.
We shall execute a plan to impose and raise tariffs on all goods imported to this country for sale, determined by the country of origin. There shall be no excise taxes imposed on any goods produced within the United States containing at least 75% of its value from components produced within the United States by American-own producers. Tariffs and excise taxes shall be the source of at least fifty percent of the total taxes collected by the Federal Government of the United States. We believe that the remainder of federal receipts should be from usage fees and sales taxes, which shall be uniform among all citizens.
We shall work toward the effectual elimination of all state, and local income taxes by immediately and unceasingly reducing the tax in an aggressive, structured, and responsible manner until the tax is nonexistent. We hold that the federal income tax is unconstitutional, as the 16th Amendment was never properly ratified. At no time shall any tax jurisdiction impose both a sales tax and an income tax.
We shall oppose all taxes on property beyond any sales taxes paid upon acquisition of that property and hold that no taxes shall be levied on property transferred to any citizen upon the death of another citizen, or taxation of the seller's receipts of a property sale by a citizen.
We shall endorse efforts to prohibit the federal governments raising or disbursing tax revenues to be in turn paid to state governments for expenditures strictly within the Constitutional auspices of the state governments, except during a short and limited term of transition to a return of Constitutional governance of our republic.
Protecting our Oceans and Fishing Rights
The America First Party is aware of the need to protect our oceans, and of the detrimental effect of excessive regulations on the American fishing industry.
The American fishing industry has been decimated by treaties and regulations which give away fishing rights to foreign nations, and which reduce fish quotas unnecessarily.
Many Americans have been put out of work for these reasons, and we intend to stop this!
Our nation's national security and economic stability are dependent upon reliable access to affordable, dependable, and efficient energy resources. Any responsible national energy policy must therefore ensure the energy independence of the United States. These are the goals of the Energy Policy of the America First Party.
Over the decades, our leaders have failed us. They have attempted to manipulate markets they cannot and do not understand. They have bowed to the political pressures of both industry lobbyists and environmental extremist groups. Moreover, in implementing these policies, they have overstepped their legitimate constitutional authority.
The result of their policies is disastrous for our nation and its people. We are more dependent on hostile nations to meet our energy needs than at any other time in our history. Prices have been allowed to artificially fluctuate under the influence of foreign cartels, resulting in the destruction of much of the domestic energy production industry and the good jobs provided.
The America First Party holds that our nation must adopt an Energy Policy that is Constitutional and focused on solving our near term energy resource problems, while promoting long term solutions that advance the above stated goals.
We support a transition of our nation's energy consumption from the currently used petroleum, and other fossil fuels, to alterative and renewable sources of energy.
However, we recognize that many of the most promising technologies are still in the development stages and many years from being cost-effective and reliable sources of energy. Thus, we recommend the following steps be taken to restore energy independence while these new sources of energy are developed into marketable technologies:
- Eliminating the regulations which artificially impede or prohibit the production of oil from mapped, capped, off-shore, and marginal oil wells located in the lower 48 states and Alaska.
- Uncapping the existing wells in the National Petroleum Reserve including Gull Island, which would allow us to produce another 1.5 million barrels per day of environmentally friendly low-sulfur oil.
- Ensuring that all new oil production uses the more efficient and environmentally secure extraction technologies available.
- Impose a $20 per barrel oil price support provision to protect our industry from OPEC's predatory pricing practices.
- Encourage the use of clean coal, safe nuclear, wind, biomass incineration, and other existing electricity generation technologies so as to allow petroleum and natural gas supplies to be more readily available for consumer usage at reasonable prices.
- Promote the construction of new coal gasification, bio-diesel, and oil refinery capacity within the United States and increase tariffs on imported refined petroleum products.
Implementation of these steps will allow our nation to become energy independent during the coming years as our nation's scientific community and industries develop the important technologies needed to power our coming oil-free future.
PART III: ENCOURAGE THE TRADITIONAL VALUES OF FAITH, FAMILY, AND RESPONSIBILITY
Role of the Government in Moral Issues
We shall address social, moral, and civil rights as guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution and its amendments so as to promote freedom tempered by responsibility while seeking justice for all our citizens. We recognize such policies emanate from and must reflect and revitalize our national character and the individual heart.
We affirm the principle espoused in the Declaration of Independence, that we are all endowed by our creator with certain unalienable rights, and among them is the right to life. The right to life is not superseded by any foreign or domestic law.
Since the United States Supreme Court decision in the case of Roe v. Wade legalized abortion, there have been 40 million unborn babies slaughtered, laying to waste an entire generation. It is time that we end the American Holocaust. We are committed to protecting the lives of these innocent persons.
The America First Party recognizes that life begins at conception and continues until natural death. We seek to remind medical practitioners that when treating a pregnant woman, a doctor in fact has two patients - the mother and the unborn baby. We support the overturning of Roe v. Wade and seek the passage and vigorous enforcement of legislation which protects the right to life, regardless of age or state of gestation.
Apart from the marriage covenant, the association of patient and physician in the medical treatment of the human body is the most intimate and private interaction imaginable. It follows that the liberty to direct and control one's own medical care ought to be paramount in an ordered and free society. The personal freedom to make health-care decisions must remain inviolate, while preserving the moral and legal prohibitions against the deliberate taking of any human life.
Interposition of government, third party payers, and bureaucrats between patients and their health care providers must be abolished.
The responsibility to provide financial means for health care rests with the patients, their guardians and family alone. While charity and compassion are the moral duty of all persons of good will, there can be no legal duty, either upon society or other members of the general public, to pay for or provide any form of health care.
It is the imposition of mandated government insurance, oppressive regulation, the socialization of health care, and public funding of medical research, which are responsible for driving up the costs of medical care.
With these basic principles in mind, the America First Party calls for the following action.
- The right of each patient to enter into an agreement with health care providers of his choice as to reimbursement, costs, course of treatment, confidentiality, and waiver of liability, must be restored.
- The patient's right to decide his own course of medical care, in consultation with his health care provider, shall not be infringed by third party payers, regulators, or courts; but may be vested in writing by the patient in a medical guardian. Under no circumstances may any person other than the patient himself authorize the withholding of food and water; and no person, including the patient, may make medical decisions meant to result in the death of the patient.
- The right of health care providers to the good faith practice of the healing arts shall be restored. Monopolies and enforced licensing shall be abolished, but all such providers shall be required to honestly convey their training and qualifications, and to perform their art to the best of their knowledge and ability.
- The Federal Government's role in the regulation of medical care shall be restricted to the ensuring of standard weights and measurements as they relate to medical devices and pharmaceuticals, ensuring that standards of quality, potency, and purity are enforced, and that no false claims are made as to the usefulness, safety and efficacy of the drugs or devices.
- The right to contract between patient and health care provider, healing institutions, and manufacturers of drugs and devices, shall be restored, including the right to agree upon fees, liability and its limitations, and standards of performance and outcome.
- The constitutional restrictions upon the federal government which prohibit government involvement in the payment for health services, except as they relate to the armed forces, shall be enforced, all such programs being phased out and patients transitioned to private payment plans and local agreements with their own health care providers.
- Patients and insurers for the provision and/or payment of health services costs shall be entitled to enter into private agreements setting out the terms of payment, coverage, and appeal processes which may be enforced in the usual manner of contracts.
- The right of health care providers and concerned citizens to provide charitable medical services as they deem proper shall be restored and encouraged.
- The constitutional bar against federal subsidy of drug and medical care research shall be enforced.
- No person shall be required to receive any treatment, psychiatric services, medication, or vaccines without his consent.
- The intimate privilege between patient and health care provider shall be inviolate, and medical records and communications between them shall be privileged from government or private discovery without the patient's consent.
- All the rights, privileges and protections herein described shall, in the case of minor children, be vested in their parents or legal guardian.
Cloning and Genetic Manipulation
The mapping of the human genome at the dawn of this new century is a tremendous achievement that will propel us towards real cures for many diseases that baffle our medical community today. It has allowed us to learn how to read a complex code laid before us by our creator. However, we must be mindful of our obligations to use this technology wisely and with great reverence and using the highest moral standards.
The America First Party calls for the following minimum guidelines to be codified into law regarding the further research and development of this technology:
- Outlaw the cloning of human beings and of other mammals, fowl, fish, and reptiles.
- Outlaw the modification of the human genome to eliminate undesirable traits, to enhance existing abilities or traits, or to create new abilities or traits.
- Require that all human genetic material used in research or in the production of medications be given without coercion and without duress, deception, or relief of criminal responsibility.
- Oppose the coerced collection and use of genetic information as a factor in hiring, the issuance of life or health insurance, housing, or access to public places.
- Outlaw the use of fetal tissue for genetic or other research, but permit the use of placenta tissues collected following the natural birth of a child.
The America First Party unequivocally supports the return of all God-given rights for every family to decide how to discipline their children, what their children are allowed to do, and with whom their children are allowed to associate. Parents will decide where and how their child will be educated, whether in public, private or religious education. Parents will have the right to withdraw their child from sexual education classes if they believe the program is not in the best interest of their child - such as the teaching of homosexual practices. These practices are completely against Godly and family values.
Parents must be notified if their child asks for an abortion, or the taking of birth control pills. There should never be any type of sexual examination at school or on school time. An examination must be done with the parent's consent, and at their physician's office, or in extreme cases where abuse can and will be proved, by court order.
No family should ever be threatened with the taking of their child if they do not conform to government rules and regulations. The government of the United States of America should never interfere with how a family decides to rear one's child. If it comes down to real child abuse, government involvement should revert to the county where the child lives, and then only with proof beyond a reasonable doubt.
Every child should be allowed to have prayer at school, during recess, lunch, or after school on school property. They should be allowed to have religious classes on their own time. These schools are paid for by "We the People."
A free society demands an educated people. Parents have the right to make decisions concerning their children's education. Because Federal education programs are unconstitutional, this function must be returned to the states and/or to the people.
Whereas our United States Constitution does not grant powers to the Federal Government other than those enumerated therein, we call for the dismantling of the Department of Education.
The Federal Government shall not regulate nor intervene in our schools. It must not provide or endorse a particular worldview or philosophy, in keeping with the First Amendment, which prohibits the establishment of a religion. The responsibility to educate our youth belongs to the people, in particular to the parents or legitimate guardian of the child, and this right shall not be denied them. They shall have the right to choose the method of education that shall include but not be limited to: private schools, correspondence schools, home schooling or public schools run by local and independent school boards, whose members are elected in fair elections, free from special interest groups, union and political influence.
We recommend that America First Party state organizations issue a supplemental education platform that addresses the particular needs of the people in their state.
The indiscriminate diagnosis of Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD), hyperactivity, and depression by school staff, and the undue pressure exerted on parents to medicate their children with mind-altering drugs such as Ritalin, Paxil, and Prozac (to name a few), is a scandal in our school system and an injustice to our children.
The diagnosing, prescribing and dissemination of medication and medical procedures are not legitimate functions of our schools, and should be discontinued immediately.
The responsibility for the health and welfare of children belongs to the parent or legal guardian in consultation with their family physician, and this right shall not be breached by school administrators, staff or federal and state agencies.
We do not support bilingual education, which only prolongs the assimilation of immigrant children into our American culture. Children progress faster when immersed in the English language. For this reason, we do not support keeping immigrant children languishing in foreign speaking classes.
We oppose federal funding for education. We believe funding for public education should be derived from local sources such as state and county taxes, municipal bonds, private grants and philanthropic scholarships.
To this end, the America First Party will work to discontinue a national curriculum, mandates, federal grants and programs such as Goals 2000, Outcome Based Education, School to Work, sensitivity workshops, sex education and a host of other programs that proliferate in our schools and seek to corrupt our children and undermine parental authority and traditional family values.
The right of parents to educate their children is paramount. Therefore, the America First Party will work to elect servants of the people who pledge to safeguard this right, for we know that the future of our nation and the continuance of our liberties are vested in our youth.
Homosexuals in the Military
The America First Party will not support any proposal that allows homosexuals into the military service of the United States of America, in any capacity.
The United States military service is an honorable vocation for honorable men and women.
The America First Party strongly supports the traditional family as ordained by God and built upon the marital union of one man and one woman. The institution of marriage is a sacred value upon which the traditional family is based. Therefore, we believe there should be a constitutional amendment to protect marriage as being a union between one man and one woman only.
No society can survive in the absence of moral governance. In recognizing America's historic Christian roots, the America First Party firmly supports the necessary restoration of God to the public square.
Three of the greatest tragedies that affect both our nation and individual families are the slaughter of unwanted children in the womb, the pain of those families who are unable to have children of their own, and the woeful way we treat unwanted children who are allowed to be born. Too many of our children are stuck in an overburdened foster care system designed to prevent the emotional attachments necessary for children to develop into healthy adults. Too many prospective parents are frustrated by adoption laws that seem to care too little about love and too much about money.
The America First Party shall support laws that make it easier for a qualified mother and father to open their hearts and homes to children unwanted by their birth parents. With the interests of the child foremost in our thoughts, we shall seek to protect the parental rights of both biological parents. We shall seek to lower the barriers to a stable, traditional family life we know to be in the best interests of all children.
PART IV: ENSURE EQUALITY BEFORE THE LAW IN PROTECTING THOSE RIGHTS GRANTED BY THE CREATOR
Hate or Thought Crime
The America First Party is unalterably opposed to all so-called ' hate crime ' laws whether they are federal, state, county, or municipal. The elusive element of ' hate ' as a significant factor in the commission of a particular crime is something that can best be determined by God; not by Man.
Security in One's Person and Property
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers and effects will be emphasized.
"No knock" raids and violation of a person's property will not be tolerated. Searches will not be conducted without a properly executed warrant. Private property may not be taken for public use until after just compensation has been paid. Stolen property may be recovered for return to rightful owner.
Separation of Powers
Ensure the federal government adheres strictly to the separation of powers enumerated in the Constitution. Rescind all Executive Orders and Presidential Directives and deny "Fast Track" authority since it is a clear violation of the separation of powers. End judicial activism as well as the delegation of power by Congress to either of the other branches or to any of its agencies or institutions. Government agencies and institutions having no basis in the Constitution should be promptly terminated or transferred to the respective states. Repeal all Emergency Powers thus ensuring power is returned to the Congress, the states and the people in accordance with the original intentions of the US Constitution.
Restore states' rights by ensuring the powers not specifically delegated to the Federal government by Tenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution are restored to the states respectively or to the people. Federal agencies not in compliance with amendment 10 are to be abolished with the attendant responsibilities being transferred to the states respectively.
Oppose the Police State
A people cannot be considered free if they fear their own government. As control of the law enforcement apparatus has been slowly transferred to our federal government and the threat looms of transfer to unelected transnational overseers, fear of our own government will naturally rise. Additionally, as unconstitutional regulatory agencies are armed and military branches are granted competing enforcement powers, the incentives to arrest, harass, seize the property of, and even murder our fellow citizens rises and our Bill of Rights is shredded in the name of law and order.
The America First Party takes a strong stand against the rise of state police powers and laws that allow for the people to be penalized in fines and property seizures without due process of law. We stand against the use of secret evidence in the attaining of search warrants or as cause for detaining citizens. We support the right of all our citizens to face our accusers and to know the evidence against them in a court of law. Finally, we hold dear that our citizens should be secure in the knowledge that no agency shall be allowed to monitor our citizens' communications, associations, or examine personal effects without due process of law and public disclosure of that process.
Constitutionality of Federal Legislation
Require that all legislation brought to the floor of Congress cite the portion of the U.S. Constitution that grants its authority. Any legislation currently in effect that cannot meet that strict criterion must be rescinded.
Money and the Federal Reserve
As insisted upon by the founding fathers, the U.S. is to operate on a coined money standard without interference or influence from private financial institutions, either foreign or domestic. Dissolve the Federal Reserve Bank, which has no legal basis since it is a privately owned corporation.
Congress shall have the power to overturn federal judicial decisions that misinterpret the laws Congress has passed.
When punishing criminals for their crimes, the United States Constitution is clear that "No person shall be...deprived of life, liberty or property without due process of law." It further explicitly prohibits the imposition of "cruel and unusual punishments."
Some argue that the Death Penalty is unconstitutional, based on the "cruel and unusual punishment" clause. This line of argument often relies on irrationally conflating "rare" and "unusual." Such argument also relies on a moral determination that the Death Penalty is "cruel." However, such determinations are best made by the people through their elected representatives, not unelected judges.
It is the position of the America First Party that when the totality of the Constitution is considered, the Death Penalty is constitutional so long as there is appropriate due process in the determination and imposition of this penalty.
Thus the issues become:
- When should the imposition of such a penalty be allowed by law, and
- What constitutes "due process" in such a case?
The ultimate penalty a society can impose for a criminal act is the Death Penalty, depriving a person of his or her life. Once implemented, this penalty is irreversible. Thus, it is especially important that a society ensures that it is both justly and morally imposed and implemented.
The limited protections actually offered to defendants in a criminal case exist to protect the innocent from wrongful imprisonment. Among these protections are the presumption of innocence until proven guilty, the guarantee of trial by jury, and a standard of guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. These protections are intended to ensure that only the guilty are convicted and punished--and that the innocent are set free. This principle is the goal of our judicial system.
However, our judicial system is broken, with innocent persons too often being imprisoned, and guilty persons too often set free. In civil cases, results resemble legalese lotteries, not just determinations based on the facts and the law.
Too often, it is clear that jurors do not understand the concepts of proof beyond a reasonable doubt and justice. Too often judges lack both common sense and good judgment, and their rulings appear guided by either corrupt motives or political agendas, not the impartial search for justice.
Proof beyond a reasonable doubt is legally defined as proof of such a convincing character that one would be willing to rely and act upon it without hesitation in the most important of one's own affairs. However, it does not mean an absolute certainty.
In Article III, Section 3, a standard of proof is set forth for the crime of Treason, which has been a capital crime throughout history. In requiring a standard of "Testimony of two Witnesses to the same overt Act, or on Confession in open Court," the Framers proposed a standard of absolute certainty for a crime they expected would carry the Death Penalty.
Given the absolute finality of the Death Penalty, the America First Party supports the proposition that due process requires a higher standard of proof than "beyond a reasonable doubt" to impose the death penalty.
We therefore propose the following as regards to the Death Penalty:
- That in keeping with the restrictive nature of the Constitution, Congress shall not impose the Death Penalty as a punishment for any crime except those explicitly named crimes for which it has been given a clear constitutional mandate and instructions. States shall retain their constitutional duty to define crimes and determine penalties within their jurisdictions.
- That if a legislature has determined that the Death Penalty is a legally available punishment for a crime, juries alone shall determine its imposition or if a lesser punishment should be imposed-- not judges or an appointed sentencing committee.
- That juries shall be properly instructed as to the meaning of the legal terms: "preponderance of the evidence," "beyond a reasonable doubt," and "to an absolute certainty," and by which standard they should make their judgments in a given case.
- That the imposition of the Death Penalty shall require a jury to find the person guilty using an "absolute certainty" standard of proof, as defined by legislatures.
- That until our broken criminal justice system is repaired, enforcement of the Death Penalty shall be suspended pending the application of the higher standards and respect for life called for in this Platform.
We call for swift action to restore the honor and integrity of our judicial system. We further call upon citizens of good will to engage in a sober and thoughtful discussion regarding the nature of justice when punishing those who commit the most heinous of crimes and the goal of such punishment.
Rights of Private Property Owners
The perception that Liberty, Science, and Technology are more of a threat to the environment than a blessing seems to be the current thinking on environmental policy. The Federal government has used environmental policy to initiate government management of the environment, limit the peoples right to the use of their private property, and to bind this nation to international treaties based on exaggerated claims of dubious scientific value.
The Fifth Amendment of the Constitution limits the federal power of eminent domain. The activities of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) have become extra-constitutional in this regard and must be ended. Congress cannot abrogate their responsibilities under the Fifth Amendment to such an extra-constitutional Federal Agency. The federal governments binding U.S. citizens under UN or international treaties that are in violation of the U.S. Constitution should be ended and treaties rescinded; they include Kyoto, The Biodiversity Treaty, Convention on Climate Control, and Agenda 21.
Preserve Knowledge of the Constitution
A primary responsibility of the federal government is to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the U.S. All freshmen congressmen should attend classes stressing Constitutional principles and responsibilities for upholding those principles. Encourage the states to embark on rigorous programs of teaching the Constitution of the U.S. and of each respective state to its population.
The Government of the United States of America will not abide by or make any laws that will deprive any citizen of his or her rights to privacy. No government body, domestic or foreign, shall have any authority to abuse these rights.
These rights include, but are not limited to, living on our own land without interference, to worship at the manner of our choice, to rear our children with love and understanding, to work where and how we wish, to have guns to protect ourselves and our loved ones according to our second amendment rights, to freedom of speech and press and all the freedoms granted by the Creator and guaranteed to us under the Constitution of the United States. In addition, these God-given rights guarantee us protection from being forced or coerced to receive drugs or technological devices. However, the right to privacy cannot be used as a justification for any government or individual to perform criminal acts or violate the fundamental rights of any other person.
The America First Party stands steadfastly against all forms of biometric identification and tracking of innocent Americans. These include fingerprinting, facial and retina scans, implant chips and DNA sampling.
We oppose the forced or voluntary fingerprinting of American citizens to obtain drivers licenses.
In addition, we oppose the use of Social Security numbers as a means of identification and all attempts to establish a national identification system.
The America First Party calls for the elimination of all laws that grant Special Privileges or Protection for any race or group. Affirmative Action creates inequality before the Law, and only serves to fracture our national unity.
Limitation of Federal Law Enforcement
While the ability of law enforcement is limited by a number of geographic and demographic factors, the ability of nation-wide law enforcement to carry out duties efficiently and fairly is not practical.
It shall be the position of the America First Party that national law enforcement agencies be restricted to protective services, local and state resource agencies, and investigative agencies, to the limitation that arrest and search powers rest with local and state authorities.
Restraint of the Executive by the Law
Submission to the Law by the Government is the cornerstone of the Rule of Law. Our Constitutional Republic binds its governing authorities with the chains of the Constitution, and no President or other executive officer may claim any exemption therefrom due to the exigencies of war or urgencies of policy considerations. Every effort by the President or other executive officers to escape or evade the restraint of law and the Constitution is repugnant to the solemn Oath each undertakes upon entry into office.
At several times throughout its history, our country has suffered the rule of Presidents who saw their powers as unlimited and themselves as modern American Caesars. In order that the public might recognize these repeated abuses for what they are, we declare our opposition to all such illegal claims of power and artifices to escape the law:
- Congress has the general power to "make all laws which are necessary and proper for carrying into execution the foregoing powers and all other powers vested by this Constitution in the Government of the United States, or in any department or officer thereof" (Article I Section 8). The Executive must submit to and enforce those laws so long as they are authorized by the Constitution.
- The President has no authority to modify a law passed by Congress by means of a Signing Statement, Executive Order, Presidential Decree, Presidential Directive, or other such device; rather, his prerogative is to veto such laws as he disagrees with, and follow the requirements imposed by them should his veto be overridden.
- The Constitution gives to Congress the power to define Piracies, Felonies committed on the High Seas, Offences against the Law of Nations, which include the manner by which war must be conducted lawfully, and to make rules governing captures and the regulation and government of the armed forces. As Commander in Chief, the President must submit to all such laws Congress adopts in all respects relating to the conduct of war and defense of the nation.
- As Commander in Chief, the President is still bound by the restrictions of the Bill of Rights in his treatment of American citizens, especially relating to their privilege from government spying into their private affairs without a court order based upon probable cause.
- The President has no authority to revoke Habeas Corpus or detain American citizens without charge and without trial by designating them "enemy combatants" or by holding them outside the jurisdiction of the federal courts.
- The President has no authority to announce a "war" of any kind, or to designate any person or organization as "enemies of the United States," such powers being vested solely in the Congress, and then only by formal Declaration of War; lacking which, the President is powerless to designate any person as an enemy combatant or to designate any geographic region as a "battlefield."
- The citizens must be free to petition the courts for relief and redress from government misconduct, and such relief, if the cause be proven, must be actually granted and not avoided by legal artifice and special privilege. The protection of sovereign immunity, often claimed by the Executive, is nothing more than a claim that the government is above the law. It must therefore be abolished, and the government and all its agents placed under the same standards of negligence, misconduct, criminal prosecution, and civil damages that now apply to the citizens.
- The use of the so-called "State Secrets Privilege," whereby the executive presumes to strip the citizens of their right to litigate claims involving government misconduct in the courts, violates the separation of powers, by giving the Executive a veto against the Court's jurisdiction.
Congress has the sworn duty to utilize the constitutional processes of Impeachment and Removal from Office for any President or executive official who advocates or embraces any such trick or artifice, or makes any such illegal claim of power. All such abuses are repugnant to the Constitution and the Rule of Law.
PART V: CLEAN UP OUR CORRUPTED POLITICAL SYSTEM
Eliminate Special Interest Budget Influence
Congress shall make no law that grants financial, political or social benefit to a specific foreign or domestic group or business interest. All current laws that fall in this category are hereby abolished.
Restore Constitutional Governance
The freedom and happiness of our nation's citizens must be restored, by binding the government's power under the chains of the Constitution.
The America First Party believes that faith in our government institutions requires our government officials to act in an honorable manner and we shall require the highest ethical conduct by all of our government officials. The reforms we propose have become necessary because many government officials have seemingly misplaced their moral compasses and abdicated ethical responsibilities incumbent for a Constitutional Republic to survive.
Since many government officials seem unable to distinguish right from wrong, we demand the following reforms be enacted into law:
- Limit gifts, favors and outside sources of income while in office and after leaving.
- Restrict the franking privilege to direct responses to constituent contacts.
- Prohibit elected officials or their staff members from lobbying for five years from the time they leave government service.
- Without limiting a president's constitutional right to grant pardons and commute sentences, put in place and enforce policies and procedures for public and congressional review prior to the granting of a pardon or commutation.
- Empower citizens with the right to recall elected officials who engage in proven unethical behavior, violate existing law, or fail to uphold their oath of office.
- Require all legislation to be read by the appropriate officials before debates or votes are cast.
- Require all bills to address one issue only.
- Require all legislation to clearly cite the constitutional authority authorizing it.
- Require all legislation and regulation that applies to businesses and citizens to apply to federal government institutions and officials.
- Only the people may decide, in a general election, if public servants have earned a raise in compensation.
Campaign Finance Reform
The source of corruption of our political system that causes so many of our people to turn away in disgust or to adopt an attitude of cynicism instead of optimism is not money but rather the source of that money. Money is merely the megaphone. The America First Party holds that government of, by, and for the people cannot endure when our political conversation is controlled and polluted by corporations interested in profits instead of the best interests of the American people. We believe that the protections of the 1st Amendment were primarily designed to political speech of individual citizens. We also believe that individual citizens have a constitutional right to speak on the issues of the day, to assemble collectively to do so, and to influence the elections in which they can vote and to know who is attempting to influence their vote. We shall promote and enact the following reforms of our campaign finance system:
- All election laws should be vigorously enforced, and the penalties should serve as a deterrent.
- The states shall be permitted to experiment with different forms of campaign finance reform, so long as they protect the rights of citizen participation and equal access irrespective of party affiliation.
- All donations to political organizations, be they issue-oriented, political parties, or candidate committees, must come from actual persons who are citizens and registered to vote or from other political committees.
- At least 50% of the funds donated to a candidate committee must come from citizens who can vote for the candidate.
- All political organizations shall disclose the source of every donation within 48 hours of receipt in a manner easily accessible to the public.
- All political organization shall have equal access to all forms of advertisement.
- In all political advertisements that mention a candidate, show the likeness of one, or take a position on a referendum before the people, the five largest sources of funds for the organization or person that puts the add forward should be shown is a visible manner.
- The Federal Election Commission is supposed to be the people's watchdog and nonpartisan oversight of the election processes. One-third of the American people belong to neither major party. Therefore, one-third of the membership of the FEC should be independent of the major parties.
- In matters of political speech, the 1st Amendment does not apply to corporations or non-citizens.
- All candidate forums which are broadcast or published and contain candidates from more than one political party must include all candidates who can legally win the office.
The U.S. Constitution guarantees each State a republican form of government. Therefore, the America First Party seeks a verifiable election process, with citizen checks and balances, which are beyond the control of our federal judicial system and the media.
We favor retaining the Electoral College, which serves a vital role in ensuring all regions of the country are represented, rather than only a few urban population centers. The Electoral College should be strengthened, by having states change from a winner-take all system to a system where two electors are elected at large, and each congressional district elects the remaining electors.
We favor easily read and marked paper ballots. These ballots shall be hand-counted at the precinct immediately upon the polls closing, and before being transferred to the county elections office.
The Federal government shall not require any other language besides English for voting materials.
We oppose any voting system that gives a voter a receipt, which can be abused by facilitating the sale of votes.
We oppose any voting system that does not generate a permanent, easily human-readable artifact that can be used to verify a proper vote count.
We favor paper ballots where each race or ballot issue shall have an option to abstain from voting for that race or ballot issue. This reduces the potential of partially blank ballots being tampered with.
We call for an end to early-return ballot casting. Instead, anyone wishing to vote early should instead request an absentee ballot and vote according to that method or drop his or her ballot in person into the Absentee Ballot receptacle. Absentee ballots will contain paper ballot to be processed with other paper ballots.
Except for military voters, all ballots in a Federal election must be received by election officials by the close of the final Election Day. Military votes shall be given to an appropriate designated officer by close of Election Day, sealed and certified by the officer and sent via expedited channels, to arrive no later than 5 days after the final Election Day. Requests for absentee military ballots shall be sent via designated expedited channels. Election results may not be announced until either all eligible military ballots have been counted or it is determined that the margin of victory exceeds the number of outstanding military ballots.
We favor the repeal of Motor Voter laws and all laws, which enable non-US citizens to register to vote and fraudulent voter rolls to be created.
We favor laws that make casting of a ballot by an illegal alien a felony resulting in immediate deportation with no possibility of return.
We favor a uniform poll closing time shall be established of Midnight EST (6 pm in Hawaii) for all 50 states. Each state may otherwise choose their own poll opening time.
We favor prohibiting all exit polls announcements until all voting has been completed in Hawaii. In the case of contested elections, exit poll results will not be announced until that election is decided by the proper authorities.
We call for a congressional investigation into Voter News Service (VNS) out of New York City. This investigation should focus on the role of VNS in calling past elections.
We urge voters to carefully consider how public opinion polls can influence public opinion, and the ways in which opinion polls can be manipulated by the choice of respondents, and by the phrasing of questions to get a desired response. While it is the first amendment right of pollsters to publish their conclusions, voters would do well to disregard opinion and exit polls and vote their conscience.
Any candidate who has a ballot line and a theoretical chance of winning shall be admitted to any and all televised or published debates; otherwise the cost of the media coverage shall be treated as an in-kind contribution to each of the participating candidates. Any media outlet receiving Federal funding (e.g. PBS, NPR) shall be required to give equal time to all such candidates.
Whereas various states are trying out several different forms of open primaries, the America First Party supports evaluation of the benefits of each of these systems before making any national recommendation.
All election return results shall be posted at each local polling place after counting takes place. Consolidated final vote tallies for multiple polling places shall be announced only by a designated election official having jurisdiction over all relevant polling places. Under no circumstances shall inter-mediate tallies be announced prior to announcing the overall totals. Disclosure of intermediate tallies by election workers or by media prior to official announcement of the final vote result shall be a felony.
We favor an election process whereby our election officials who preside over our elections are above reproach in the vote counting process. Election officials should not be subject to an environment where the voting public is forced to rely on blind faith and trust as to the honor of any and all presiding elections officials. Therefore, we favor administrative changes to be enacted by county elections officials. Among these:
- Every Ballot cast in an election, henceforth will be hand-counted immediately upon the polls closing, at the ballot box by the named poll watcher/officer and witnessed by any resident acting as agents of any Candidate, or any Issue on that ballot. No ballots may be removed from the respective polling/counting site until a public posting, no smaller than 100 pt type has been made on a wall in the election location after poll closing
- All Ballot Boxes shall be constructed of clear or translucent material. This will enable citizens to see that no ballots have been fraudulently created and placed in a ballot box before or during an election.
- All absentee ballots shall be delivered by the United States Postal Service directly into a clear receptacle, kept in public view at all times until the election is over. With current technology, a web-video camera should be made available for and monitoring by Internet inspection. No ballots shall be removed from this box until counted. Counting will take place on a table immediately adjacent to the absentee ballot box, also viewed by the web-video camera.
- Recognizing that computers can be easily manipulated and programmed for a pre-determined outcome, computer generated tabulation of Vote Totals in any election shall only be done as a point of confirmation, and only after all hand-counting has been completed.
- Assure there will always be verifiable, transparent elections by never allowing Computer Touch-Screen Vote Marking Machines to be utilized, and that Paper Ballots will always be employed in every election.
- Where these vote marking machines are already in use, if counties refuse to replace them with a verifiable paper ballot counted system, a printer shall be attached so at the time of the vote, the voter can print out a paper document to verify his vote and deposit it into the clear box to be counted on site when the polls close.
- County Clerks shall recuse themselves from presiding over their own election. It is recognized as a gross conflict of interest to be anywhere near the handling of a ballot involved in their race. The County Clerk shall be mandated to hire a neutral third party, approved by a 2/3 vote of the people, by Initiative Process in the off election year.