Freedom Writer - July/August 1996
Plot revealed to usurpRepublicans in 1996
By Skipp Porteous
In the likely event that the Republicans fail to nominate an
ultra-conservative ticket at their 1996 convention in San Diego,
Religious Right strategists plan to immediately promote a radical
"It is possible constitutionally and legally to be on the November
ballot in all 50 states in 1996," said Howard Phillips, president
of the Conservative Caucus, "and to withhold a decision about the
identity of an independent, pro-life ticket until after the
Republican Convention in San Diego."
Phillips, a disciple of Christian Reconstructionist theologian R.J.
Rushdoony, also heads the U.S. Taxpayers Party. The U.S. Taxpayers
Party will hold its convention in San Diego on August 15-18, 1996,
on the heels of the Republican National Convention. "Be a part of
history in the making," a flyer promoting the convention says. "The
eyes and ears of the world will be focused on San Diego where both
the U.S. Taxpayers Party and the Republican Party conventions are
The leading contenders for a radical conservative slate are
political commentator Pat Buchanan, African-American talk show host
Alan Keyes, and Congressman Robert Dornan. Admitting that none of
these men have much chance of capturing the Republican nomination,
plans are in the works to place two of them on a third-party
ticket. The ticket would probably consist of Buchanan for president
and Keyes for vice-president.
_The_Freedom_Writer_ received a fax from Colorado Springs containing
the June 2, 1995 memorandum from Phillips to Focus on the Family
head James Dobson.
"A President can be elected outside the Republican and Democratic
Parties in 1996," Phillips said in his memo. "That President can be
a pro-lifer, such as Alan Keyes or Pat Buchanan." Calling the plan
a "political insurance policy," Phillips told Dobson, "More than
anyone else in America today, you have the power to make this
According to the strategy outlined by Phillips, the first objective
is to get the U.S. Taxpayers Party on the ballot in all 50 states.
With Dobson's help, Phillips thinks he can do this. He may be
"Millions of Americans now look to [Dobson] for spiritual and,
sometimes, political guidance," _The_New_York_Times_ wrote. "He has
emerged as one of the country's most influential religious
figures." In his January 1995 newsletter, Dobson stunned
conservative Christians when he suggested supporting a third-party
"If the Republicans fail to address the things that matter most, I
believe a third party will coalesce around an emphatically pro-life
candidate in '96," Dobson wrote.
In a March letter to Republican National Committee chairman Haley
Barbour, Dobson warned that "you leave us and millions like us with
no recourse but to consider a third party candidate for president
in 1996." The letter was co-signed by hundreds of attorneys and
their spouses attending a conference at Dobson's Focus on the
Family headquarters in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
In his effort to get the U.S. Taxpayers Party on the ballot in
every state, Phillips told Dobson, "I urge you to help me make sure
that those ballot lines will be available in all 50 states so that,
if the Republicans in San Diego fall short of what you and I know
to be necessary, (Remember, we had a 'good' GOP platform in 1980,
1984, and 1988 -- but the policies of the Reagan and Bush
Administrations, in significant respects, advanced abortion -- by
approving hundreds of billions of dollars in subsidies for Planned
Parenthood, by naming pro-abortion judges, etc.) in the days
immediately following, it will be possible for us to nominate a
ticket and give it the support it needs to march forward to victory
when the voters choose in November, 1996, and when the electors
meet in the 50 state capitols in December."
After placing the U.S. Taxpayers Party on the ballot in each state,
the second step is to prepare to nominate two ultra-conservative,
high-profile candidates should the Republicans fail to do so.
Phillips believes that Buchanan is their man, and will accept the
U.S. Taxpayers nomination after his rejection by the Republicans.
In "The Howard Phillips Issues and Strategy Bulletin" of February
28, 1995, Phillips wrote, "Pat Buchanan CAN be elected President in
1996, but only if he runs for President -- not if he runs simply
for the Republican nomination."
Phillips contends that Buchanan can raise unlimited amounts of
funding for his campaign if he does two things: reject federal
matching funds and have a different running mate in each of the 50
states. "Each of those running mates (if they are running as a team
with Pat with the same campaign committee) can spend unlimited sums
in behalf of the Buchanan candidacy."
In an interview published in the June 1995 _Chalcedon_Report_,
Phillips said that it was "very unlikely" that conservative
Christians will capture the Republican Party. "Even if a Pat
Buchanan," he added, "were to win the Republican nomination (an
outcome which I regard as extremely unlikely), his potential for
winning in November would be undermined by his perceived ability to
unite his own party, a significant proportion of whose members have
different views than those of Pat on everything from NAFTA, GATT,
and the New World Order to abortion, homosexuality, and Federal
"Our goal," Phillips told _Chalcedon_Report_, "must be not merely
capture a party, or even a platform, but to install our policies in
government. And, in shaping those policies, we must advocate what
we know to be necessary, not merely what we are told is politically
expedient. Without the Presidency, we can't turn the country
In his memo to Dobson, Phillips said that "there is much which a
President can do to end legal abortion in America." A president can
appoint only anti-abortion federal judges; he can "veto funding for
all pro-abortion programs and services; he can instruct U.S.
Attorneys to prosecute abortuaries for violations of Federal
regulations; he can withhold funding for courts and judges who have
violated the laws of God with respect to abortion; he can assert
that, contrary to _Roe_vs._Wade_, abortion is unconstitutional, under
Article IV, Section 4 of the Constitution, which guarantees to each
state a Republican form of government (in a republic, as opposed to
a democracy, our God-given rights to life, liberty, and property
may not be extinguished without due process of law -- even by a
While these plans are formulated behind the scenes, Pat Robertson's
Christian Coalition continues to grab the headlines. The Christian
Coalition is a key factor in the 1996 elections. Currently, the
group's executive director, Ralph Reed, thinks they will do better
if they remain within the Republican Party. Nevertheless, last
February, Reed, speaking at a Conservative Political Action
Conference, said that the Religious Right would withdraw support
from the Republican ticket in 1996 unless both candidates opposed
abortion. He vowed to mobilize the Christian Coalition against the
Republican Party if it nominated pro-choice candidates for
president or vice-president.
In spite of what Reed said then, the Christian Coalition's
"Contract with the American Family" is viewed by some as a
compromise, and has come under fire from other conservative
Christians. A cover story in _The_New_American_ of June 26, 1995,
magazine of the John Birch Society, called the Contract "gimmicky
at best and dangerous at worst." The article accused the Christian
Coalition of "selling out its principles, particularly with respect
to the right-to-life issue."
"I am horrified," declared Judy Brown, president of the
anti-abortion American Life League. Brown said that the Contract
with the American Family was "terribly disappointing." "The outcome
of such failed pragmatism will be more dead children. As a fellow
Christian, I am appalled at their betrayal."
Evangelical commentator Chuck Colson said that abortion is a
"non-negotiable issue" for conservative Christians. He warned that
an anti-abortion plank must remain a part of the Republican
platform. "You leave us, and I'll tell you one thing, Southern
Baptists and evangelicals will leave you," he told GOP leaders.
An allegiance between Phillips and Dobson would be formidable,
although such a maneuver would most likely be opposed by the
Christian Coalition at this time. Politics is about winning.
Because the Christian Coalition wants to be on the winning side,
the group is likely to back whatever Republican presidential
candidate they perceive will win. On the other hand, if they decide
that a third party candidate could win, their allegiance could
shift. Then the Phillips/Dobson coalition to produce a winning
third-party candidate might just work.
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