As a state chair of an affiliated state party, I have a direct interest
in how affiliation issues are handled.
Years ago, the LNC Executive Decision came to conclusions about the
Oregon affiliate, based on the facts available to them at that time.
After a long series of events that we all know, the Judicial Committee
ruling overturning those findings has in turn been overturned, so the
findings are again valid.
However, the rulings as made are problematic. For example, there is
currently no Oregon faction chaired by Mr. Reeves.
In any event, based on the facts as they are now known and in place, the
National Chair has ruled that the Oregon affiliate is the Libertarian
Party of Oregon as once chaired by Mr. Wagner. These are not the same
as the facts that were known and in place years ago, so there is no
reason for the ruling to be the same.
One of the LNC ExComm decisions of years ago, which the LNC Judicial
Committee in its most recent ruling confirmed, was that the LNC ExComm
actually had the power to make the ruling that it did.
No matter which faction is the actual affiliate party, as a separate
issue the current JudComm rulings confirm that the LNC ExComm had and
therefore still has the power to make the decision. In particular,it has
the power to make a fresh decision.
The LNC ExComm has met repeatedly since the Judicial Committee made its
recent ruling. It has surely been aware of the National Chair’s
position on the identity of the valid affiliate. It has made no effort
to overturn the Chair’s ruling.
At this level, silence implies consent. The LNC ExComm has consented to
the chair’s ruling, so the LNC ExComm now consents that the LPO — the
Wagner faction — is the current affiliate. The Judicial Committee has
already ruled by upholding the old ExComm rulings that the ExComm is
entitled to make this decision. The ExComm has again decided, and the
Judicial Committee is bound by its own past decision to uphold the
current ExComm action.
Furthermore, the Oregon matter has been brought before the LNC, which is
entitled to overrule the Executive Committee. A motion to transfer
recognition to the Epstein faction was made. The LNC did not accept the
motion. By this action they left in place the Chair’s decision, thus
overturning the decision of the prior ExComm.
The Judicial Committee should therefore inform Mr. Epstein that if he
wishes recognition for his faction as our Oregon State affiliate, he
should go to the LNC and ask them under its ByLaws to take the necessary
actions to recognize his group.
The Judicial Committee should also ask itself whether or not ExComm
decisions persist beyond the end of that Executive Committee’s term, at
least in the absence of specific LNC action authorizing them, e.g., to
take out a long-term loan. That is, whatever the ExComm may hve ruled
years ago, does that ruling have any current effect.
State Chair, Massachusetts
George Phillies is currently the Chair of the Libertarian Party of Massachusetts, and ran for the Libertarian Party’s Presidential nomination in 2008. He publishes LibertyforAmerica .