Central Committee Minutes, 7 March 2009

Minutes of the Central Committee of the Libertarian Party of Maryland
Saturday, 7 March 2009

Opening: The Libertarian State Central Committee of Maryland met at Squire’s Italian Restaurantin Dundalk, Maryland. The meeting was called to order at 6:38 pm by chairman Bob Johnston. The agenda, Treasurer’s report, 9 August 2008 Central Committee meeting Minutes, and 24 February 2009 Program Committee meeting Minutes were distributed.

Attendance: the Credentials Committee consisted of: Robert Glaser; Dave Sten; and Bill Buzzell. It validated that 15 Central Committee members were in attendance for the meeting. No proxies were represented. The Central Committee rolls consist of 29 members.

Minutes: The minutes of the 9 August 2008 Central Committee meeting were accepted as submitted.

Treasurer’s report: The Treasurer’s report was referred back to the Treasurer to be presented at the next meeting.

Chair’s Report: Bob Johnston reports that membership is 68; we receive $115/month from pledgers. We made a 1000-piece newsletter mailing to National and former MdLP members. We are getting results from people who ran in the last election; more involvement in the last few weeks with regard to running for office. Bob would like to run a full slate of candidates in 2010 at the top and fill in from the bottom. We can win municipal elections right now and can win county elections soon. He urges our party to separate itself from the other two parties; he is getting contacted by everyday people fed up with the current system. We need 10,000 valid signatures to renew our ballot access and need to start working on this now with volunteer efforts. Bob wants to use our budget for candidate support, and try not to spend money on the petition until later if needed. SB445 would require petition signers to show ID; Spear Lancaster spoke on our behalf in Annapolis against the issue; no one asked him any questions; he testified that 1/3 don’t register and 1/3 don’t vote due to lack of choice; he didn’t see any strong support for the bill. SB947 would cut the signature requirement down from 10,000 to 5,000; the hearing is on 3/12. Bob wants to start up more regular MdLP affiliate meetings; to be more aggressive with the local media; and would like to have a separate media director. He wants to get 100 activists ready for next year. He challenges each of us to get 100 signatures or pay to get 100 signatures. He asks members to step up their membership levels: become a monthly donor, join national, become a national monthly donor; donate to candidates. We can double our vote totals from the last election. Bob thanks our candidates again, they are the ones making things happen.

Program Committee’s Report: Susan Gaztañaga presented the Program Committee report, which recommended approval of the following proposed changes to the State Program:

    1. Replace the first Education bullet with: “Allowing for increased parental choice within the government public school system (e.g. tax credits, vouchers, school district selection, etc.).”

      Vote: motion PASSES unanimously on a voice vote.

  1. Replace the first Job and Wealth Creation without Corporate Welfare bullet with: “Ending public funding for stadiums, hotels, concert halls, etc., and stopping unfunded mandates.”

    Vote: motion PASSES unanimously on a voice vote.

Officer Elections: The following were nominated as officers: Robert Johnston III, Robert Glaser, Michael Linder, David Sten, Lorenzo Gaztañaga, Tony Spezio, and Muir Boda. As there were no more than seven nominations and there were no objections, the nominations were voted upon as a slate; a voice vote approved the slate.

Nominations of 2010 Candidates for State and Local Office: Justin Kinsey was nominated for the Md. House of Delegates, district 5B; Brandon Brooks was nominated for the Md. House of Delegates, district 11; both were approved by a voice vote.

Joe Seehusen (former LP Executive Director): served as Ron Paul’s deputy in his campaign; there are many groups working for liberty which are impressed with the LP; we should reach out to them.

Muir Boda (candidate for Salisbury City Council): was raised to respect others’ liberties; considered himself a Republican but struggled with their views; in 2000 voted for Harry Browne, and since voted Libertarian every time possible. He was enlivened by Dr. Davis’ campaign. Running for city council has garnered good support; most not affected by his Libertarian registration. Learned: to attend council meetings, approach leaders, be respectful, be specific, and offer solutions. Urges candidates to get educated about day-to-day operations of government; find four hot button issues, stay away from national issues if running for local election; use public access TV; ask for small donations; organize meet-and-greets; give a consistent message. He is using voting registration lists to meet voters. The LP has the opportunity to make strides in the coming years. His General Election is April 7.

Denise Minter (prospective MdLP candidate for governor, 2010): was introduced by Lorenzo Gaztañaga; she currently is registered Democrat, would change to Libertarian. She is running for the individual; says “it’s not a crime to be poor.” She is opposing bureaucracy which hinders small entrepreneurs. Ms. Minter has been an activist for 20 years and scored 100/100 on the Nolan chart. She is still investigating libertarian views; when queried, said she was against the drug war.

Announcements: the Central Committee thanked Bob Johnston for arranging the Convention. Michael Linder tells us to pick up “Inclined to Liberty” books; other books and newsletters are here to be taken. Bill Buzzell announces the first weekend in May is the Towsontowne Festival.

Adjournment: the Central Committee meeting adjourned at 8:12 pm.

–Robert E. Glaser