Tuesday, February 14, 2006

The End of the Second Party Movement

By the Power of the Purse, of course. My title presumes that in the Desert of the Real we live under one-party rule, whether you call our single party with two wings the Demopublican Party or just the Washington Party. Those running that party manifestly want to keep it that way. (I wonder if they think that whether due to our government's insane involvement in foreign wars or because of domestic issues such as chronic joblessness and underemployment those in power believe a credible challenge to their power could be mounted between now and 2008.)

This from the Libertarian Party (note the Orwellian title the Washington Party has given the bill introduced):


For Immediate Release Feb 10, 2006

Congress Attempts to Kill the "Third-Party Threat"

Proposed Legislation Creates Treasury-Funded Campaigns for the Two Major Parties, Leaving Third Parties with No Means to Run

(Washington, D.C.) On February 1, congressional Democrats, led by Rep. Obey of Wisconsin, introduced a bill, H.R. 4694, that would end viable, third-party competition in races for the U.S. House of Representatives.

The bill, ironically named the "Let the People Decide Clean Campaign Act," would mandate public funds (taken from the U.S. Treasury) to candidates for the House of Representatives and forbid candidates from taking private funds such as contributions from individual donors.

The ambiguously-written bill provides funds for candidates of the "two major parties" but essentially scuttles any campaign efforts of third-party or independent candidates.

For third-party candidates to be eligible for the same funds that Republicans and Democrats would receive, they would have to obtain enough signatures to exceed 20% of votes cast in the last election within their district.

The catch under the proposed legislation is that third-party or independent candidates cannot pay petitioners to collect any signatures, making it impossible to fund their campaigns.

H.R. 4694 is yet another attempt by our politicians in office to shut down Libertarian Party candidates and other competitive third-party and independent campaigns.

"The Republican and Democratic parties exist to maintain power for their own benefit. The Libertarian Party exists to grasp power for the benefit of the nation," stated Shane Cory, chief of staff for the Libertarian Party. "American voters are waking up to this reality, and as they do, the two parties are trying everything within their power to shut us down."

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