Business Politics and Current Affairs

October 21, 2010

US Politics – Independence Party

Filed under: US Politics — ispoli @ 9:40 am

Independence Party

After two years of openly feuding with Ross Perot’s allies in the Reform Party, Minnesota Governor Jesse Ventura and his supporters bolted from the party to launch the new Independence Party in February 2000. In departing, Ventura denounced the Reform Party as “hopelessly dysfunctional” and far too right-wing (in its embrace of Pat Buchanan’s candidacy). While this splinter party shared the Reform Party’s call for campaign finance and other political reforms, Ventura’s organization disagrees with the more social conservative and trade protectionist views espoused by many new leaders in the Reform Party. The IP – which is entirely under the control of Ventura and his allies – describes itself as “Socially Inclusive and Fiscally Responsible.” Like Ventura, the IP is pro-choice, pro-gay rights, pro-medical marijuana, pro-gun rights and fiscally moderate. The IP fielded a slate of Congressional and state candidates in Minnesota in 2000. Ventura said he hoped to take this Minnesota party national and possibly field a Presidential nominee in 2004. However, as of 2002, the IP had nascent affiliate parties organizing in just a handful of states. Ventura’s retirement decision in 2002 was also a blow to the IP. Retired Congressman Tim Penny – a former Democrat – was the IP nominee for Minnesota Governor in 2002, but he finished a distant third. Also in 2002, IP co-founder Dean Barkley became the first IP member to serve in Congress when Ventura appointed him to the US Senate to complete the two months of a term left open by the death of the incumbent. The Independence Party Campus Network is the student wing of the party.

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