This is the second email sent out to those who have expressed interest in building a unified conservative party. Last week we said that we would not be posting any others, but it was simply too popular, so we’ll do this one final post. Please fill out the form at the bottom if you would like to receive future installments.
Last week’s email yielded an incredible number of reply emails. I’ve worked through hundreds and there are still more to reply to, so please accept my apologies for not replying faster. I will personally reply to all of them with the help of coffee and God’s favor. Please do not take this as a call to stop emailing because you think we’re too busy. When we have a million party members we’ll still want to read and reply to every correspondence directly even if we have to hire dozens of communication associates. Nothing should be allowed to slip through the cracks.
Today, we’re going to tackle the most common question asked by those who replied: platform. What does the new party believe? How can members influence the platform? Who decides?
These and all of the other questions about the platform were valid and need to be addressed. First, it’s important to understand how we feel about conservatism itself. Not everyone will agree and that’s okay. The end goal of setting this nation down the right path does not require everyone to completely agree about everything. We are Constitutional conservatives and as such we will agree on the core principles that guide us even if specifics may be up for debate. It’s through this debate that we can always be growing and relevant.
To understand where we stand on conservatism from a “philosophical” perspective, please take a look at Conservatism as a state of being. It was shared on Conservative Review’s Facebook page, so please feel free to like or share from there as well.
The Constitution as our touchstone
Texas Senator Ted Cruz, who we endorsed for the GOP nomination, said, “My touchstone for every question is the Constitution.”
This very clearly and concisely encompasses our position regarding the party’s platform. We believe that the Constitution is not out-of-date as many liberals would have people believe. There are points in it pertaining to race and gender that needed to be brought up to date which is why it’s a living document. However, we do not believe in using modern “sensibilities” through activist judges, meddling legislators, or overreaching Presidents to change it. The wisdom of the founding fathers allowed for Constitutional amendments that would keep it as a living document. We are originalists; anything short of an amendment should not be allowed to alter the intent. Government was intentionally limited by those who understood the risks of an entity having too much power over the people. If we do not act soon, we will be the first generation since the Revolutionary War to experience true government oppression again.
Avoiding the mistakes of other 3rd parties
One of our advisers told us that the reason the Libertarian, Constitution, and other parties have never been able to make a significant impact on American politics is because their platforms are too specific. Many conservatives love nearly all of what the Constitution Party espouses, but their unwillingness to support Israel is a deal breaker. Another challenge comes with representation of an ideal through perceived policy standards. One of the emails I received last week said, “I’d love to be a Libertarian but I don’t believe in drugs and I don’t want people doing a strip tease on stage during the convention.”
To avoid pitfalls like these, we will have two platform levels: principles and current policy stances. Our principles should be firm and act as our unchanging credo. This may seem very similar to other parties, but it’s important to note that our actions will be guided first from these principles rather than the subordinate policy stances. These will be the non-negotiables; our candidates will believe in and promote these principles first and foremost. When the core of a party, its members, and its candidates are in lockstep behind a Constitutional set of principles, we cannot be divided over the issues. That’s NOT to say there won’t be disagreements on specific policies. It would be naive if we went in thinking that we could keep everyone saying and doing the same thing separate from their personal convictions. However, by continuously returning to the party’s principles and maintaining the Constitution as our touchstone, we will not falter as a group or as individuals within the group.
On specific issues, we will rely on two tenets of the party: policy caucuses and a member-driven policy platform. The caucuses within the party will be led by party members rather than politicians. This will allow members of the party to select specific policies they hold dear so they’ll be able to participate through their passions. For example, a 2nd Amendment Caucus would allow for gun rights activists to drive their agenda in and out of the party itself. This will give those who are most informed on a topic to spread their knowledge to others and to mold the party’s narrative in regards to the issue.
The member-driven policy platform is a work-in-progress. We believe in the wisdom of representation as a Republic rather than a pure Democracy. However, we do not believe in everything being driven from top to bottom. Most (all?) other parties formulate their platform by committee at the top. A small group of people decide on the party’s platform. From there, it is brought before the delegates in what is usually a formality for approval. We believe that party members should have much more influence over the platform. Whether through representation or direct voting, we want to tackle each individual policy with the input of party members rather than indirect approval through delegates and committees on an overall platform.
What’s most important to understand is that the platform will be binding to our candidates. They will sign off on individual platform components rather than on a platform as a whole. We have seen for decades the parties putting out platforms that have no meaning. Currently, the GOP platform is quite good, but their candidate for President is breaking from the platform left and right. Our candidates will agree to each individual component of the platform. When they disagree with a component, they will write a memo of dissent explaining why they have chosen to break from the party on that issue. Then, we will be able to grade our candidates based upon their level of adherence. These grades will be used for fundraising allocation. By doing this, we will have a tangible way to keep candidates and politicians in line with the will of party members.
If any of this is confusing, don’t worry. Just as we want members of the party involved with the platform when the party officially forms, we also want you, those who have expressed interest at this early stage, to have a say in the principles upon which we build the party in the first place. We don’t just encourage you to give us feedback or ask questions. We are practically begging for it. This is not going to be like any other party America has seen. Mass media and the internet has given us ideal ways to build a party more aggressively than any of our predecessors. We will take full advantage of that fact.
That’s all for this week. Again, it was a big bite, but we intend to mitigate that by keeping it coming a single bite at a time. Please share this email with everyone you believe would have interest. Also, stay up-to-date with regular updates on our party’s page. If you missed last week’s email, you can find a copy here.
Thank you and God Bless,