The following notice from George Phillies appears at http://www.lpmass.org/
What Do You Think? – Message From the Chair
The Libertarian Party National Convention has nominated Bob Barr to be our Presidential candidate.
As state chair of LP of Massachusetts, I am now in a rather difficult position. Not ten years ago, Bob Barr tried to persuade the army to ban Wicca services from fields near Fort Hood. He also, I am told by Art Torrey, referred to Art’s religion as ‘bogus’.
I am in the same position as a State Chair who has a majority-African-American State Committee, and whose Presidential candidate was, ten years ago, a Grand Dragon of the KKK who spent his time trying to persuade storeowners not to rent out their storefronts to African-American churches.
Such a history is not something that you can talk your way out from.
What is your advice?
I have already been presented with a request for a Special State Convention as found in our State Party ByLaws to consult with the Party Membership.
The Libertarian Party of New Hampshire is already I gather having a special state convention to deal with the issue.
I of course welcome your advice on the matter. Please note that the State Party at the moment has planned to spend $11,250 to put a Presidential and US Senate candidate on the ballot.
Your state committee will be meeting this Thursday at 7:30 PM at my home, 48 Hancock Hill Drive, Worcester MA 01609. Members whose dues are current of the Libertarian Party of Massachusetts are welcome to attend. Please call in advance 508 754 1859 to tell me how much soda and iced tea to have on hand. Almost without exception, if you are such a person you received the last issue of the newsletter.
508 754 1859
Although I am not a Member whose dues are current of the Libertarian Party of Massachusetts, I am in the process of circulating a petition to put the LPMA presidential ticket, electors, and Senatorial candidate on the ballot.
It so happens that I was at this very meeting. In addition to the LPMA ballot access petition, prior to going to the LP National Convention in Denver, I was also petitioning to put the End the Income Tax and Marijuana Decrim ballot questions before the voters.
When I got back from Denver, I caught a ride from Carol McMahon, LPMA Political Facilitator, who was nice enough to let me crash a couple of nights on her couch (thanks, Carol!). Carol and I went up to Worcester, Mass, to get paid for our work on the two ballot questions, which had gathered sufficient signatures to no longer require our services while we were away in Denver.
Right after that came the aforementioned gathering at Dr. Phillies’ place of residence. Since Ms. McMahon was giving me a ride, and no one voiced any objections, I went ahead and participated in the LPMA State Committee meeting, other than for the purpose of voting, for which I was not eligible.
I took no notes, so the following is from memory; please forgive and correct any errors that may result.
All (or at the very least, almost all) who were gathered expressed great disappointment with the presidential ticket choice of the delegates at the national convention. There was a lengthy and contentious discussion as to what, if anything, the LPMA could or should do about it.
Contrary to this report at IPR, the vote against having a special state convention was far from unanimous, and came after a long and complicated discussion.
The report at IPR (which I have still not received a log-in for, BTW) was brough to my attention by the following comment:
George Phillies Says:
May 31, 2008 at 4:44 am edit
I shall first congratulate my good friend Jake Porter on his election to the Libertarian National Committee.
I shall now hijack the thread to note that Austin Cassidy’s new blog, whose web interface is so fractious I cannot log into it, has posted a report on a Massachusetts Libertarian meeting last night. The report is from someone who was not at the meeting. The report bears absolutely no semblance to reality, down to not getting right the name of the group that met.
The report’s author appears to be the same person who keeps circulating reports that I was attacked at the National Convention by an armed gunman.
If I had been contacted as State Chair, I would have been happy to offer corrections–make that ’suggest a total replacement for the report’. I wasn’t.
This moved up the schedule of my plan to issue this write-up of the LPMA State Committee meeting in Worcester.
Anyway, returning to our high Shakesperean drama:
Several of those assembled were also among the electors lsited on the petition. They all agreed to remain listed on the petition, although Mr. Torrey for one made it clear that in the highly unlikely event that he is actually a member of the College of Electors (that is, if Barr carries a plurality of Massachusetts votes for president), he would not feel bound to vote for Bob Barr. Carol was charged with finding out if the willingness to remain listed also held true of those electors not present.
Dr. Phillies made it clear that even if the State Committee voted to hold a Special State Convention, LP National would still draw up new nomination papers, with a new slate of electors loyal to Mr. Barr, and would quickly gather sufficient signatures to place Mr. Barr on the ballot here through the services of a local petition company. Furthermore, this new nomination paper might not include US Senate candidate Robert Underwood, and the LPMA would not have enough time and/or money to place any other presidential slate on the ballot. The possible threat of a lawsuit by the LNC Inc. against the individual members of the unincorporated LPMA State Committee was also broached.
Another option was discussed at length, to have a state convention for the purpose of such things as discussing a resolution of censure against the national ticket, but with the stipulation that the LPMA would not do anything to jeopardize the status of the petition which has already been circulating and has somewhere in the neighborhood of 5,000 or 6,000 signatures.
At the end, after said lengthy and contentious discussion and several rounds of voting on various motions, it was agreed that at this time the LPMA would not plan a formal special convention, but would instead plan an informal party at George’s house, possibly for the purpose of an extended two-minute hate against the dastardly Mr. Barr, or, perhaps alternatively, for soda, crumpets, and awed admiration of Professor Phillies’ impressive collection of board games.
In other news, one person who had made plans to circulate the petition before Mr. Barr’s nomination (the aforementioned Mr. Torrey) thought better of it, while the remaining three individual contractors all decided to go ahead and keep circulating, even though we all were also delegates who voted against Mr. Barr’s nomination. Not that it really matters, since the vast bulk of the signatures is being gathered by the previously referred to petition company in any case. Additionally, one or more donors to the petition drive cancelled their pledges, leaving the state party far shy of its previous commitment to the cost of the drive.