The Libertarian Party is the largest and fastest growing alternative political party in the United States. It has already attracted hundreds of thousands of liberty-minded citizens concerned with curbing out-of-control, bureaucratic and oppressive governments – federal, state and local.
The Libertarian Party believes that individual freedom coupled with personal responsibility form the basis of a benevolent community, country and world. We wholeheartedly support the Constitution and the Bill of Rights as they were originally intended: as foundations of a free, just and humane society.
The mystery of government is not how Washington works but how to make it stop.
– P.J. O’Rourke
The Tennessee Supreme Court decided on Thursday that the only use for roadside sobriety tests is to collect evidence against motorists, using them to convict individuals for driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI). The high court justices overturned an appellate decision from 2012 that found a driver who passed six of the tests with flying colors should never have been arrested (view 2012 ruling). David D. Bell was arrested on May 13, 2009, even though the trial judge found no evidence of impairment in the sobriety tests when he reviewed the dashcam footage.
“I honestly think that he did pretty dog-gone good on the field sobriety tests, better than most I’ve seen,” Sevier County Circuit Court Judge Rex Henry Ogle observed. “I couldn’t pass them as well as he did.”
On that early morning in 2009, Bell had stopped by the The Roaming Gnome Pub and Eatery located in Sevierville and had a few drinks. He made a mistake and ended up on the wrong side of the road when Sevierville Police Officer Timothy Russell came upon him. On the roadside, Bell performed the four-finger count, recited the alphabet from G to S, and identified for Officer Russell in what year he turned six. Officer Russell rated his mental acuity as “excellent.” Bell also passed the one-leg stand and the walk-and-turn test. Read The Full Story
Alternative political party activists gathered in Nashville, as the Tennessee Senate took up the important issue of ballot access. Currently the Tennessee Legislature is considering three bills that deal with the topic of alternative party ballot access. The bill under consideration during this hearing was SB1091. SB1091 lowers the signature requirements for individual candidates to get on the ballot representing their party. It does not deal with the issue of lowering the standards for general party ballot access. During the hearing Daniel Lewis from the Libertarian Party of Tennessee and Jerry Pangle of the Constitution Party of Tennessee were allowed to testify before the committee and answer questions for committee members. Senator Janice Bowling, an advocate of reforming ballot access restrictions, wants to make a friendly amendment to the bill. Since this amendment has not yet been seen by committee members it was decided to roll the bill for one week. Another bill looking at the issue of ballot access reform is headed to the full Tennessee Senate later this week.
Alternative Political Party Members Lobby for Ballot Access Reform in Tennessee
James S. Buente of Franklin, Tn has been appointed the new Chair of the Libertarian Party in Williamson County. Jim Tomasik, the Chair of the Libertarian Party of Tennessee made this appointment last week.
Tomasik commented that, ” the Libertarian Party stands for maximum liberty and limited government. Nationally, we are different than the two major parties. We want to shrink government not expand it. On the state and local level, our members need to learn the issues, take positions on them and then speak out. We are another voice.”
“Jim Buente has a great professional background in organizing at the grassroots level. That’s one of the key reasons I appointed him to lead our new thrust forward in Williamson County.”
Buente worked for 26 years for the National Federation of Independent Business, the largest small business advocacy group in Tennessee and the country. He was a state lobbyist for 10 years and then a Regional Director. In 1998, Buente moved he and his family to Nashville where NFIB’s corporate offices are located.
“At NFIB, I oversaw the formation of over 30 Area Action Councils all over the Southeast”, Buente noted.
Buente has resided in Franklin TN and Williamson County since 1998. He served in 2002 on the board of the Franklin Tomorrow visioning process. He also served as co-chair of the Volunteer committee for FT. After he retired in 2005, Jim became the President of JSB Enterprises Inc. His company owned and operated 2 sub shops in Williamson County. Currently he is the Owner Of Jimbo Vending in Franklin.
Buente plans to hold an informational meeting open to the public to better explain what it means to be a Libertarian and to begin to organize the local chapter in February.
If you are interested, feel free to contact Jim Buente by E-Mail or give him a call at 615 243 8531
During the Governor Haslam’s State of the State address he announced the Tennessee Promise, an ongoing commitment to every student in the state that he or she can attend two years of community college or a college of applied technology absolutely free. The proposal, which drew bipartisan applause during the speech, would make Tennessee the first state in the entire nation to offer such a program. Following two free years of schooling, if a student then choose to go on to a four-year school, the state’s transfer pathways program makes it possible for that students to start as a junior. By getting their first two years free, the cost of a four-year degree is cut in half. In addition, the cost of the Tennessee Promise program itself will be paid for through a strategic transfer from the lottery reserve into an endowment fund with absolutely no cost to the state or taxpayers.
HB 1694 (M. Turner) would establish a state minimum wage. A state minimum wage actually tends to harm the people it is supposed to help. As NFIB points out.
- Increasing the minimum wage hurts the young, the poor and untrained. 53% of persons making the minimum wage in this country in 2011 were under the age of 25. Minimum wage earners usually are persons beginning in a career or learning a trade.
- Businesses prefer that wages and conditions of employment be the same from city to city and state to state if possible. We prefer that the minimum wage be the same everywhere.
- Many minimum wage earners are part-time employees – 69% of workers who earn the Federal minimum wage work part-time.
- Two-thirds of all minimum wage earners make more than minimum wage within a year; 55% of Americans begin their careers making within $1 of the minimum wage.
- Increasing the minimum wage reduces dollars available for employment, thereby reducing the number of employees and making it less likely that employers will hire beginners, the less-abled and untrained.
- Tennessee small business owners like Danny Todd with Monterey Foods, an independent grocer, will have to cut payroll and hire fewer workers if the minimum wage is increased. The last time the federal minimum wage was increased in 2008 Mr. Todd had to do exactly that.
- Having a Tennessee minimum wage that differs from that of our neighboring states could give businesses and employers a reason to locate their businesses outside of Tennessee.
- At a time when nearly 1 in 5 Tennesseans is either out of work or no longer actively looking for work, a minimum wage increase would only make the problem worse.
Bills have been introduced in both houses of the Tennessee legislature to return Tennessee to its pre-1961 ballot access rules for new and minor parties. As was the case before 1961, parties could be recognized if they filed paperwork identifying their officers and bylaws, but no petition would be needed. Their individual nominees would each need 25 signatures.
Under current Tennessee law, independent candidates only need 25 signatures, and candidates can get on primary ballot with 25 signatures. But minor party candidates can’t run, with their party label, unless their party submits over 40,000 valid signatures. Read The Full Story
Representative Craig Fitzhugh (D-Ripley) and Senator Jim Kyle (D-Memphis) have introduced HB 2353/ SB 2575 the Fiscally Responsible Equal Election Diversification Optimization Measures (FREEDOM) Act. The FREDOM Act addresses the fundamental issues that obstruct freedom of speech as related to the formation of new political parties in Tennessee. The FREEDOM ACT would end fifty-three years of political oppression in Tennessee. This is an act that was drafted by the alternative parties in Tennessee. You may learn more about efforts to reform Tennessee’s ballot access laws by visiting Tennesseans for Ballot Access Reform.