National Convention Minutes 1993

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Report of the National Convention of the Libertarian Party 2-5 September 1993 Salt Lake City, Utah I. CONVENTION OFFICIALS


Mary Gingell


Steve Dasbach


Joe Dehn


Bruce Lagasse

Convention Oversight Committee:

Geoff Neale (chair), Ruth Bennett, Dan Karlan

Convention Contractor:

Bob Waldrop (Morning Glory Productions)

Credentials Committee:

Joe Dehn (chair), Ed Moss (vice chair), Gary Johnson (secretary), Kevin Delaney, Thea McLean, Perry Metzger, Robbin Stewart, Karen Tegtmeyer

Bylaws and Rules Commitee:

David Bergland (chair), Karen Allard, Sharon Ayres, Joe Barnett, Ruth Bennett, Tamara Clark, Steve Dasbach, Don Ernsberger, Steve Givot, Henry Haller

Platform Committee:

Dean Ahmad (chair), Greg Clark (vice chair), Jorge Amador, Jon Asfour, Natalie Dehn, Dave Doss, Bill Evers, Dale Hemming, Gus Hercules, Jacob Hornberger, Joe Lusardi, Elizabeth Macron, F. William Muench Jr., Tim O’Brien, James Parker, Michael Tanner, Tom Tryon, Ludwig Vogel, Sandi Webb, Joseph Brennan (alternate), Paul McKnight (alternate), Karen Scarborough (alternate)

II. TIME AND PLACE The business meeting of the convention were conducted in the Salt Palace, Salt Lake City, Utah. Various committee meetings were conducted in the Salt Lake City Marriott hotel.

The business meeting was convened at 10:23am on Thursday, 2 September. The business meeting was adjourned at 3:53pm on Sunday, 5 September.

III. CREDENTIALS The Credentials Committee reported on the delegate lists provided by the affiliate parties. Six states (AR, NE, RI, VT, WV, WY) sent no list at all. Delaware’s list was sent after the deadline specified in the Bylaws. There was a complaint that Maine’s delegation had not been selected in accordance with state bylaws. The Colorado affiliate notified the committee that several members of its delegation had not signed a statement required by that state’s bylaws. In other states there were individuals whose address had not been supplied as required by the Bylaws.

The convention adopted the committee’s recommendation that all the delegations including Delaware and Maine be seated, with the exception that those individuals missing an address or Colorado statement would not be allowed to register until the defect was remedied. The convention rejected an amendment to bar the Georgia delegation on the grounds that the Georgia party had allegedly endorsed a Republican.

The committee recommended that delegates wishing to add people to their states’ lists not make a motion from the floor but rather notify the committee, which would examine the proposal and report its recommendations to the convention at the start of each session. Several such supplementary reports were made by the committee and adopted by the convention.

The following chart lists for each state the number of delegates allowed under the Bylaws, the number of people actually registered by the end of the convention, and the total number of votes possible (delegates plus alternates filling in for delegates) as a result.

---- Allocation -- ---------- Registration --------- Possible
Regular Ex Officio Regular Alternate Ex Officio Total :Votes

AK 4 0 4 0 0 4 4
AL 6 0 3 2 0 5 5
AR 2 0 0 0 0 0 0
AZ 13 0 6 6 0 12 12
CA 115 7 72 18 5 95 95
CO 18 2 16 0 1 17 17
CT 8 1 5 0 1 6 6
DC 2 0 2 0 0 2 2
DE 2 0 1 0 0 1 1
FL 27 1 13 2 0 15 15
GA 12 2 11 0 2 13 13
HI 3 0 3 0 0 3 3
IA 4 0 2 0 0 2 2
ID 2 0 0 0 0 0 0
IL 25 3 12 3 2 17 17
IN 11 1 9 4 1 14 12
KS 6 0 6 0 0 6 6
KY 4 0 1 0 0 1 1
LA 4 0 2 0 0 2 2
MA 16 0 7 0 0 7 7
MD 14 0 9 0 0 9 9
ME 7 0 4 0 0 4 4
MI 24 1 15 0 1 16 16
MN 9 0 8 0 0 8 8
MO 9 0 6 4 0 10 9
MS 3 0 0 0 0 0 0
MT 1 0 1 3 0 4 1
NC 11 0 9 3 0 12 11
ND 1 0 0 0 0 0 0
NE 3 0 0 0 0 0 0
NH 11 0 7 0 0 7 7
NJ 23 1 11 0 1 12 12
NM 5 0 5 3 0 8 5
NV 5 1 5 2 1 8 6
NY 26 2 18 1 1 20 20
OH 18 0 14 3 0 17 17
OK 4 0 0 0 0 0 0
OR 7 1 5 1 1 7 7
PA 33 1 16 0 1 17 17
RI 2 0 0 0 0 0 0
SC 6 0 6 1 0 7 6
SD 2 0 2 1 0 3 2
TN 7 0 4 0 0 4 4
TX 38 3 30 4 2 36 36
UT 6 0 6 9 0 15 6
VA 15 1 11 1 1 13 13
VT 2 0 0 0 0 0 0
WA 16 0 13 4 0 17 16
WI 9 0 1 0 0 1 1
WV 2 0 0 0 0 0 0
WY 2 0 0 0 0 0 0
Total 605 28 381 75 21 477 453

The following chart lists the number of people registered and the total number of possible votes at various times during the convention.

Thursday morning 340 330
Thursday afternoon 405 388
Friday morning 453 434
Friday afternoon 460 440
Saturday morning 469 447
Saturday afternoon 475 451
Sunday morning 477 453

The names and addresses of all registered delegates and alternates are provided in Attachment A.

IV. BYLAWS AND RULES The following amendments to the Bylaws and Convention Rules were adopted: A. Creation of ‘‘National Campaign Platform’’ Insert new Article 5 titled ‘‘THE NATIONAL CAMPAIGN PLATFORM’’, renumbering remaining articles, to read:

The National Campaign Platform of the Libertarian Party shall serve as the campaign document of the Party during presidential election campaigns. This platform shall consist of proposals consistent with the Statement of Principles and the Party Platform. The National Campaign Platform shall focus on issues important to the electorate. Each candidate seeking the presidential nomination of the Party shall provide the delegates with a copy of a proposed National Campaign Platform at least 48 hours prior to the delegates selecting the nominee. Immediately following the nomination of the presidential candidate, the delegates shall, by majority vote, ratify each plank of the National Campaign Platform, without amendment. If the convention fails to ratify any plank of the National Campaign Platform, that plank will not be used. The National Campaign Platform of the candidate nominated by the convention shall be in effect until the next presidential nominating convention.

and add to the end of Convention Rule 1, Item 7: ‘‘including ratification of the National Campaign Platform’’.

During debate on this amendment, it was requested that the following interpretations of the Bylaws Committee chair and convention chair be noted in the record:

1. A candidate could adopt the campaign platform proposed by another candidate, but accepting this would require a 2/3 vote unless notice were given at least 48 hours in advance.

2. A candidate could specify the Party Platform as his proposed campaign platform, and could do so simply by reference, but notice of this would again need to be given 48 hours in advance. B. New procedures for retention of Platform planks Insert in Convention Rule 1, as new item 4, ‘‘Retention of planks from the previous platform’’, renumber existing items 4 through 6, insert new item 8, ‘‘Final retention of platform planks’’, and renumber the remaining items.

Insert in Rule 3, section 1, first sentence, after ‘‘except’’: ‘‘the retention and final retention of platform planks,’’.

Insert in Rule 4 a new section 3:

In cases where computer readable ballots are used, each delegate must sign the ballot and submit it to the delegation chair. After verifying that the number of votes cast does not exceed the number the state is entitled to, the chair of each delegation shall submit the ballots to the Secretary. During the period of time allotted for such votes, the business of the convention shall continue without interruption.

Insert in Rule 7, after the existing section 1, a new section 2:

After the adoption of the convention agenda, the convention will vote, without debate, whether to retain each of the planks in the existing platform. Delegates will cast separate votes on each plank, and use a computer readable ballot to record their votes. Delegates will be given three hours to mark their ballots and return them to their delegation chair. In the event that computer readable ballots are not available, a roll call vote shall be used. Each plank approved by a majority of those voting on that plank shall be retained in the new platform (including any amendments to that plank which are subsequently approved). If the number of delegates participating in the vote on any plank is less than the quorum in effect at the beginning of the polling period, then that plank shall be retained and a second vote on that plank, pursuant to Section 8 below, shall not occur.

and renumber the following sections; insert after the existing section 6 (now section 7), a new section 8:

After the Platform Committee report on the agenda, the convention shall vote whether to retain each of the planks, not retained pursuant to Section 2 above and not amended during the Platform Debate. Delegates will cast separate votes on each plank, and use a computer readable ballot to record their votes. Delegates will be given three hours to mark their ballots and return them to their delegation chair. In the event that computer readable ballots are not available, a roll call vote shall be used. Each plank approved by a majority of those voting shall be included in the new platform. If the number of delegates voting on each plank is less than the quorum in effect at the beginning of the polling period, then that plank shall be retained.

and renumber the following section. C. Elimination of ‘‘deletions only’’ rule for Platform In Convention Rule 1, item 6, delete ‘‘(At non-Presidential nominating conventions only deletions may be considered.)’’. D. Earlier appointment of Platform Committee In existing Article 12 (Conventions), section 6 (Delegate Allocation), first paragraph, last sentence, change ‘‘fifth month’’ to ‘‘sixth month’’.

In existing Article 12, section 8 (Convention Committees), subsection ‘‘b’’, replace the last sentence of the first part (appointments by affiliates) with:

These members shall be selected no later than the last day of the fifth month prior to the Regular Convention.

and the last sentence of the second part (appointments by LNC) with:

These members shall be appointed no later than the last day of the fifth month prior to the Regular Convention.

E. Change requirement for appeal of LNC decision In existing Article 9 (National Committee), section 11, change ‘‘5% of the Party members’’ to ‘‘5% of the Party members whose dues are current’’. F. Eliminate redundant delegate selector qualification phrase In existing Article 12, section 3, subsection ‘‘b’’, delete ‘‘or those who have made the certification required by Article 6 of these Bylaws,’’. V. PLATFORM The following amendments to the Platform were adopted:

  • In I.3 ‘‘Victimless Crimes’’:

In point ‘‘b’’, delete ‘‘including the imposition of a minimum drinking age, and’’; insert ‘‘requiring health warning labels and signs,’’ before ‘‘making bartenders’’; insert ’’, making liquor companies liable for birth defects, and making gambling houses liable for the losses of intoxicated gamblers’’ after ‘‘guests’’.

In point ‘‘g’’, change ‘‘freezing assets of the accused and seizing assets of the accused or convicted’’ to ‘‘freezing and/or seizing assets of the accused or convicted’’.

  • In I.8 ‘‘Government and Mental Health’’:

In the second paragraph, delete ‘‘immediate’’. In the third paragraph, delete ‘‘when criminal intent is shown’’.

  • In I.9 ‘‘Freedom of Communication’’:

In the first paragraph, first sentence, change ‘‘and’’ to a comma before ‘‘freedom of the press’’; delete ‘‘guarantee’’.

  • In I.10 ‘‘Freedom of Religion’’:

At end of first paragraph add new sentence: ‘‘We oppose the harassment of churches by the Internal Revenue Service through threats to deny tax-exempt status to churches that refuse to disclose massive amounts of information about themselves.’’

In the second paragraph, change ‘‘kidnappings, conservatorships, or instruction under confinement’’ to ‘‘kidnappings or conservatorships’’; change ‘‘their parents’ or any others’’’ to ‘‘any’’; delete ‘‘unconventional’’.

  • In I.11 ‘‘The Right to Property’’:

In the second paragraph, replace the first sentence with ‘‘All rights are inextricably linked with property rights.’’.

In the last paragraph, delete the last sentence (Japanese lands).

  • In 1.15 ‘‘The Right to Keep and Bear Arms’’:

In the third paragraph, insert at the end of the last sentence, ’’, and semi-automatic or so-called assault weapons and their magazines or feeding devices’’.

  • In I.19 ‘‘Women’s Rights and Abortion’’:

In the second paragraph, first sentence, insert ‘‘or regarding voluntary surrogacy arrangements’’ after ‘‘termination of pregnancy’’. Insert new third sentence: ‘‘In addition, we oppose all restrictions on the sale of menstruation-inducing contragestive pills, such as RU 486, which block fertilized eggs from attaching themselves to the womb.’’.

Add new third paragraph:

We oppose the fetal protection doctrine under which the state could require prenatal testing, require Caesarian births, require fetal surgery, require force feeding of the mother, jail pregnant substance abusers, bar home births, and bar pregnant women from working in unhealthy places and which would hold a woman legally liable -- because of her diet or personal behavior -- for having a damaged or deformed child. Under this doctrine, women could also be held liable for not aborting a damaged or deformed fetus.
  • In II.3 ‘‘Inflation and Depression’’:

In the fourth paragraph, first sentence, delete ‘‘rampant’’.

  • In II.4 ‘‘Finance and Capital Investment’’:

In the first paragraph, combine the first two sentences by deleting the period, inserting a dash, making ‘‘specifically’’ lower case, and deleting ‘‘we demand’’. Delete ‘‘tyrannical’’. In the last sentence, delete ‘‘such innovative financial devices as’’ and insert ‘‘or new financial instruments which may emerge in the future’’ after ‘‘futures’’.

  • In II.8 ‘‘Tariffs and Quotas’’:

Change ‘‘Tariff Commission and the Customs Court’’ to ‘‘U.S. International Trade Commission and the U.S. Court of International Trade’’.

  • In III.1 ‘‘Energy’’:

Delete the third paragraph (alternative fuels).

In the fourth paragraph, delete ’’, as well as the dictated conversion of utilities and other industries to coal or any other fuel. We oppose any attempt to give the federal government a monopoly over the importation of oil, or to develop a subsidized government energy corporation whose privileged status would be used as a yardstick for condemning private enterprise’’ and the last two sentences.

Delete the fifth paragraph (gas rationing).

In the sixth paragraph, change ‘‘federal and state’’ to ‘‘government’’ and change ‘‘price and output’’ to ‘‘output’’.

  • In III.3 ‘‘Consumer Protection’’:

In the third paragraph, delete ‘‘airline’’ and add a second sentence: ‘‘We call for privatizing the air traffic control system and transferring the FAA’s other functions to private agencies.’’.

  • In III.8 ‘‘Health Care’’:

Insert new paragraph at the beginning:

We favor restoring and reviving a free market health care system. We oppose the efforts of Washington politicians to place all the spending on health in American society within a federally-planned overall health budget. A new national health budget will necessitate not only federal price controls on health care services -- with all the waiting lines and distortions that accompany price controls -- but also rationing of health care. The bureaucratic, top-down system called ‘‘managed competition’’ that is to determine what-gets-spent-on-what cannot escape being a political scramble by special interests seeking health dollars and could never be an adequate substitute for completely free competition in the medical marketplace.

In the existing third paragraph, insert a new second sentence: ‘‘We specifically condemn attempts by the F.D.A. to restrict the use of vitamins, herbs, and other supplements.’’; delete ‘‘specifically’’ from the following sentence.

Insert new paragraph at the end:

Because existing tax policy has dampened price competition and consumer cost-consciousness in the medical industry, we would provide not only tax breaks for employer-provided health plans (whose value is not currently taxed as income), but also individual tax credits so that families can choose their own health plans.
  • In III.12 ‘‘Social Security’’:

Change the first sentence to read: ‘‘We favor replacing the current fraudulent, virtually bankrupt, government sponsored Social Security system with a private voluntary system.’’; change in the second sentence ‘‘repeal’’ to ‘‘replacement’’; delete the last sentence.

  • In IV.A.4 ‘‘World Government’’:

Insert new second sentence: ‘‘Specifically, we oppose any U.S. policy designating the United Nations as policeman of the world, committing U.S. troops to wars at the discretion of the U.N., or placing U.S. troops under U.N. command.’’.

  • In IV.B.1 ‘‘Military Policy’’:

In the second paragraph delete the first sentence and, from the second sentence, ‘‘Soviet, and U.S.,’’.

Delete the third paragraph (MAD).

In the fourth paragraph, first sentence, change ‘‘both the U.S. and Soviet governments’’ to ‘‘the U.S. government’’ and change both occurrences of ‘‘mutual’’ to ‘‘multi-lateral’’.

In the sixth paragraph, first sentence, change ‘‘MAD, or nuclear war fighting policies,’’ to ‘‘nuclear war fighting policies’’.

In the seventh paragraph, last sentence, delete ‘‘and the Reagan Doctrine’’.

  • In IV.D.1 ‘‘Colonialism’’:

In the second sentence, change ‘‘Micronesia,’’ to ‘‘Palau, the Northern Mariana Islands, and’’ and delete ‘‘and Puerto Rico,’’. In the second and third sentences, change ‘‘United States’’ to ‘‘U.S.’’.

  • In IV.D.3 ‘‘Space Exploration’’:

Replace the third sentence with: ‘‘We repudiate the principles contained in the U.N. Moon Treaty.’’. In the fourth sentence, change ‘‘abolition’’ to ‘‘privatization’’ and delete ‘‘and the privatization of all artificial satellites’’. VI. ELECTIONS A. Chair Steve Dasbach was nominated by Barbara Bourland and seconded by Tamara Clark and Nancy Lord.

Natalie Lloyd was nominated by James Parker and seconded by Aubri Webb and Richard Boddie.

The candidates were allowed five minutes each to speak on their own behalf.

Votes were tabulated by state as shown in Attachment B, with totals as follows:

Dasbach 188
Lloyd 84
Givot (write-in) 1

B. Vice Chair Karen Allard was nominated by Sharon Ayres and seconded by David Bergland and Bill Bradford. There being no other nominations, the election was conducted by voice vote. Allard was elected. C. Secretary Gary Johnson was nominated by Joe Dehn and seconded by Tamara Clark and Greg Clark.

John Famularo was nominated by John Hill and seconded by Don Ernsberger and Henry Haller.

The candidates were allowed one minute each to speak on their own behalf.

Votes were tabulated by state as shown in Attachment B, with totals as follows:

Famularo 150
Johnson 138

D. Treasurer Hugh Butler was nominated by Karen Allard and seconded by Willy Star Marshall and Alicia Clark.

Steve Givot was nominated by Tamara Clark and seconded by Geoff Neale and Nancy Lord.

The candidates were allowed one minute each to speak on their own behalf.

The votes were tabulated by state as shown in attachment B, with totals as follows:

Butler 194
Givot 109
Natalie Lloyd (write-in) 1

E. National Committee At-Large Sharon Ayres was nominated by Mary Gingell and seconded by Karen Allard.

Geoff Neale was nominated by Tamara Clark and seconded by Ludwig Vogel

Rick Sincere was nominated by John Buckley and seconded by Jackie Bradbury.

Gary Johnson was nominated by Karen Allard and seconded by John Famularo.

Jimmy Blake was nominated by Jim Albea and seconded by Jim Hudson.

Berlie Etzel was nominated by Barbara Bourland and seconded by Kay Stone.

Don Ernsberger was nominated by Sharon Ayres and seconded by Tamara Clark.

Tamara Clark was nominated by James Dan and seconded by Don Ernsberger.

Ludwig Vogel was nominated by Berlie Etzel and seconded by Perry Metzger.

Joe Dehn was nominated by Tonie Nathan and seconded by Paul Smith.

Ron Crickenberger was nominated by Tamara Clark and seconded by Bill Redpath.

Paul Smith was nominated by Karen Allard and seconded by Ed Clark.

The candidates were allowed 30 seconds each to speak on their own behalf.

Votes were tabulated by state as shown in Attachment B, with totals as follows:

Clark 202
Crickenberger 160
Ayres 154
Ernsberger 144
Johnson 117
Smith 110
Dehn 98
Blake 87
Sincere 82
Neale 79
Etzel 61
Vogel 27
Lloyd (write-in) 1
Givot (write-in) 1

Each of the top five were subject to a voice vote to verify majority approval. Clark, Crickenberger, Ayres, Ernsberger, and Johnson were elected. F. National Committee Regional Representatives The various affiliate parties reported on their association into regions for the purpose of National Committee representation, and on their selection of representatives and alternates as follows:

Region 1: AK, CO, ID, MT, NM, NV, OR, UT, SD, WA, WY

Representative: James Dan
Alternate: Gus Hercules

Region 2 (two representatives): CA, HI

Representatives: Thea McLean, Bill Evers
Alternates: not reported at convention

Region 3: IN, KY, MI, OH, VA, WV

Representative: Joe Hauptmann
Alternate: Steve Linnabary

Region 4: AL, AR, DC, FL, GA, NC, TN

Representative: Gary Ilardi
Alternate: Scott Benson

Region 5: DE, MD, NJ, PA

Representative: Dan Karlan
Alternate: Jesse Markowitz

Region 6: CT, MA, ME, NH, NY, RI, VT

Representative: Joseph Brennan
Alternate: Pamela Haberkorn

Region 7: IA, IL, KS, MN, MO, ND, NE, WI

Representative: Bob Franke
Alternate: Jeanne Bojarski

Region 8: AZ, LA, MS, OK, TX

Representative: Joe Barnett
Alternate: Tom Paswater

Not in a region: SC

G. Judicial Committee The following seven people were nominated to be members of the Judicial Committee and were elected on a voice vote: Bruce Baechler, Ruth Bennett, Jackie Bradbury, Alicia Clark, Steve Dillon, Wayne Dougherty, and David Nolan. VII. RESOLUTIONS The following resolutions were adopted by the convention: A. Scarborough / Royal Oak

Whereas, on April 16, 1990, an incendiary device was placed in the mail bin at the Royal Oak, Michigan, post office, an act which the Libertarian Party of Michigan and this body condemn;
Whereas, the Libertarian Party of Michigan and other freedom-loving organizations were at that time and place protesting the existence fo the federal, state, and local income taxes;
Whereas, with no apparent basis in fact or law, the U.S. Postal Service, Department of Justice, and other federal government agencies focussed their investigation of the incident on members of the Libertarian Party of Michigan, and conspired to and did engage in a campaign of harassment, intimidation, falsification of evidence, and unconstitutional search and seizure designed to portray members of the Libertarian Party of Michigan as the persons responsible for the incident;
Whereas, this criminal conspiracy by the government has led to the conviction of Michigan Libertarians Karen and Scott Scarborough for conspiracy to obstruct justice and perjury, has burdened numerous other Michigan Libertarians with the necessity to defend their honor and freedom from government depredations, has irreparably harmed the reputation and political standing of the Libertarian Party in Michigan, and constitutes a gross violation of the law and constitutions of the United States and Michigan, as well as international treaties to which the United States is a party;
Now therefore, be it resolved, that the Libertarian Party
-- Condemns and deplores these criminal actions of a government run amok;
-- Urges all freedom-loving Americans to assist and support Karen and Scott Scarborough in their efforts to obtain a fair and impartial hearing of the charges against them, in accordance with the rule of law.

B. Bill White

The 1993 Libertarian Party national convention hereby expresses its sympathy and support to its friend and colleague Bill White during the period of his incarceration, and looks forward to the day when he can resume his life among his family, friends, and community.

C. Bosnia

The Libertarian Party meeting in convention hereby declares the Serbian holocaust against the Bosnian Muslims an unprovoked act of aggression, and standing firmly behind our non-interventionist foreign policy, we condemn the participation of the United States government in the U.N. embargo against weapons to the victims. An embargo is an act of war, and while we do not advocate the American government taking any sides in foreign disputes which do not directly threaten the territorial integrity of the United States, siding with the aggressors in this holocaust is a particularly horrific example of the flaws in America’s ‘‘New World Order’’ foreign policy. We call for an immediate termination of the embargo so that the Bosnians may defend themselves, aided by any and all other individuals and voluntary institutions who wish to rally to their cause.

D. Environmental Conservation Organization

Whereas, about 475 organizations, currently working to protect private property rights from usurpation by government agencies, are already networked under the umbrella of the Environmental Conservation Organization (ECO); and
Whereas, the affiliated organizations under the ECO umbrella have a combined membership exceeding seven million members; and
Whereas, the formal organizing principle of ECO -- ‘‘Our efforts to save the environment should not erode fundamental constitutional rights nor pollute our free enterprise economy’’ -- is fully consistent with the objectives of the Libertarian Party and its Statement of Principles;
Now therefore be it resolved: The Libertarian Party USA, its delegates and members in convention, September 2-5, 1993, Salt Lake City, Utah, encourage all Libertarians to network and communicate with ECO and its affiliated organizations, to achieve our common objectives relative to private property rights.