Business Politics and Current Affairs

October 21, 2010

US Politics – Prohibition Party

Filed under: US Politics — ispoli @ 10:37 am

Prohibition Party

“If you are a reform-minded conservative and a non-drinker, the Prohibition Party wants you,” exclaimed an official party message in 2002. The Prohibition Party – founded in 1869 and billing themselves as “America’s Oldest Third Party” – espouses a generally ultra-conservative Christian social agenda mixed with anti-drug and international anti-communist views. The party’s strongest showing was in 1892, when John Bidwell received nearly 273,000 votes (2.3% – 4th place). Long-time party activist Earl F. Dodge has run as the Prohibition Party’s presidential nominee in 1984, 1988, 1992, 1996, 2000, and again in 2004. Dodge received just 208 votes in 2000 – the party’s worst electoral showing ever. The party also fields a few local candidates from time to time – but 2002 was the first time since the 1860s that the party failed to field any candidates for any public office. An additional party-related organization is the Partisan Prohibition Historical Society, a group of party activists (somewhat independent of Dodge’s control) that want to turn Prohibition Party policy into law. The anti-Dodge folks – led by new National Chairman Don Webb – seem to have wrested control of the party by fall 2003, and have now demoted Dodge to just be the party’s “provisional” nominee for President. This is largely a matter of semantics, as Dodge will continue to run as the party’s nominee and the party will back him if he secures ballot status in some states. If he doesn’t gain ballot status, the party vows to hold a new nominating convention in Spring 2004 to pick a new ticket. Howeverm all of this in-fighting could result in the party being Presidential nominee on the ballot for the first time since 1872.

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