Thursday, May 20, 2010

Chair Throwing Time at the National Convention in St. Louis?

Hot out of the inbox folks.

Libertarian Candidate for State House District 59 Brad Ploeger sent us this email in response to a letter by Bludgeon & Skewer co-founder Chris Barber regarding a recent attempt by one of the candidates for the Libertarian National Committee chair to muddy the waters at our national convention next week. It's one thing to have a spat within the party, it's another thing to call the cops.

Here's the message from Brad:

Statement by Brad Ploeger about Christopher Barber’s Letter.

Atlanta, Georgia, May 20, 2010 -- As many of you may have heard, it has recently come to light that the candidate for National Chair I supported, George Phillies, filed a secret criminal complaint with the Federal Election Commission concerning an alleged irregular transaction between the Libertarian National Committee and the Barr 2008 Presidential Committee. The complaint has subsequently been dismissed by the Federal Election Commission. To make matters worse, Phillies pursued these charges with the government after the Party’s independent auditors stated that there were no errors in our financial disclosures.

I was unaware of this Federal complaint until Christopher Barber’s letter. While I understand that Phillies was working within the law and his rights to lodge a complaint; I believe that his methods demonstrated a severe lapse in judgment. The Chairman of our Party should be working to increase the size of the Party and not run their opponents out of town. It is wrong to use the force of law to attack political opponents--even those with whom you disagree. We must work together to handle matters internally and not risk destroying the Party to settle our disagreements. I signed on to the New Path slate because I felt the leadership of the New Path would be able to move our party past the internecine warfare that has crippled the National Committee and consumed critical resources that were already in short supply.

In light of these revelations, I am no longer able to support George Phillies for National Chair. At this time I do not see a suitable candidate for Chair and will instead support None of the Above for Chairman of our Party. While I believe the remainder of the New Path candidates were unaware of this matter; I will repudiate any candidate on the slate that knew about this prior to Barber’s letter. We are the Party of Principal and it is time that the leaders of our Party demonstrate that they will provide us with more than hollow promises.

Politics is frequently a choice between the unpalatable and the disastrous. We will always face disagreements between factions in our Party; however, I cannot support anyone who advocates methods meant to destroy their opposition within the Party and risk our long-term viability. We must remember that our stated goal is to ensure that Libertarians are elected to public office. I cannot and will not support Party leadership that does not make electing Libertarians their primary focus.

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Brad Ploeger is a resident of Atlanta, Georgia and is running as a Region Representative for the Libertarian National Committee. He is a founding member and current Vice Chair of Communications of the Libertarian Party of Atlanta, a 2010 Representative to the Libertarian Party of Georgia Executive Committee and the 2010 Libertarian Nominee for Georgia State House District 59.

For those members of the readership that are uninformed, we'll be putting up a copy of the initial letter later today or you can head over to Independent Political Report and watch the fireworks there.

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