It is an honor to be here, but I wish it were under different circumstances.
We are gathered here to witness the end of an era -It is time to eulogize the Citizen Statesman, for the Citizen statesman is dead. Murdered by career politicians determined to stay in power, murdered by career politicians determined to rule, not govern.
Why do I feel the need deliver such a eulogy? Is it just because ballot access is not happening for me, Tom Martin, Libertarian Candidate for US Senate nominated by a recognized political party? Or is it a much larger problem for all citizens because the system has been re-arranged so that the career politicians have our elections rigged so they only face each other in their ongoing dance of power.
The state constitutions promises "Elections shall be free and equal." We must ask, "When?"
Statutory law has been arranged so that state wide candidates challenging the incumbent parties need more than 67,070 signatures where the incumbents need only two thousand. Only Politicians and lawyers think that 67 = 2. Offices are such as US Congress typically represents 5% of the states population yet challengers are not much better off, they still need at least twice as many signatures as the incumbent candidates running for state wide office.
I stand here with members of other parties, Constitution, Green, Socialist and Independents who also suffering the same political fate and I know of many other who did not even try because the barriers have been risen so high, Its not just me, we the people are being denied ballot access in the land of the free. The Citizen Statesman is being exterminated from the political arena.
So who are these Citizen Statesman?
The citizen Statesman is the concept that the common man has a direct and fundamental impact on how the state governs on a daily basis. The citizen Statesman is a cross section from all walks of life - people who come to Harrisburg or Washington bringing their life experience, knowledge, and wisdom to spend a few years in service to the country, the state, the constitution and their fellow man then to return to their daily lives.
The Career politicians are different creatures. They have many faces such as Dictators, Kings, Princes, and Aristocracies. All with a variety of excuses to rule. Career politicians have a life-time job servicing the public. Today, we the people face yet another angle of the power game. And, it really should not be any surprise. Thomas Jefferson warned us, "I hope we shall... Crush in its birth the aristocracy of our moneyed corporations, which dare already to challenge our government to a trial of strength and bid defiance to the laws of the country."
The entrenched political parties are such corporations. Tools for career politicians, they are legal fictions that have been violating the public trust for their own advancement.
The career politicians are always quick to play political theater. They pay lip service to the rights and freedoms of the citizens - just as long as when the citizens exercise of their rights won’t get in the careerist way.
The career politicians are quick to point out how generous they have been with the tax payer’s money - just as long as they don’t have to mention the fact that money was extorted and borrowed from other hard working citizens. The career politicians are quick to point out how they helped some one who was a victim of one of their numerous bad laws. It is easy to be liberal with some one else’s rights and money.
As rationalizations for miss deeds, today’s career politicians can easily claim massive public support from them selves and their reign, and it is no surprise because annually they are the gate keepers of thousands of billions of our tax payer dollars confiscated and borrowed from we the people.
But apparently that is not enough for their power lust. They have scrubbed opposition candidates like Ralph Nader from the ballot.
At the highest levels these career politicians have no qualms about squashing the the right of the American people to an informed vote. During the last presidential election, the same day two American soldier’s died for Iraq's democracy, the career politicians President Bush and Senator Kerry had Libertarian Presidential candidate, Michael Badnarik, and Green presidential candidate, David Cobb, arrested rather then debated just to deny the citizens an informed vote.
Why is their democracy so important - and ours is not?
The career politicians are so imbedded in government they have made government a tool for advancing their own self interest. They have done many things to protect them selves from the people - but controlling who runs against them in the elections is the most devious and egregious wrong for it requires violating the public trust about clean elections.
Where are the career politicians when it comes to protecting the fundamental rights of the American citizen? After all, protecting the elections of 'We the People,' not their life time grip on power is their explicit and sacred duty that they accepted when they swore an oath to uphold and defend the Constitution.
Who is trying to protect our republic?
I am, Tom Martin nominated Libertarian candidate for US Senate. I am very honored to stand with other citizen statesmen who are also fighting for our republic.
They are other people who have placed their life, reputation and honor on the line:
Russ Diamond, Independent for Governor,
Hagan Smith, nominate, Constitutional Party, candidate for Governor,
Marakay Rogers, Green Party, candidate for Governor,
Jeff Brindel, Socialist, state representative candidate, 26th district,
Jim Babb, Libertarian, state representative candidate, 157th district.
We are but a few of what America needs many of, a dying breed, the Citizen States Men, the kind of people that our country was founded by and for.
Is our state free enough that the citizens will be allowed to vote for us?
What we are doing today is asking not for any special favor, but we are demanding that the Constitution actually be followed. It is my hope that I am wrong that the citizen statesman is not dead. That here in Pennsylvania, in America, that "Elections Shall be free and equal," and we won’t have to ask, "When?"