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Interview with Bob McNeil, Presidential Candidate, American Citizen Party


The American Citizen Party calls itself a “revolutionary” party. Its home page asks readers: “Would you participate in a revolution if you were assured that the end result would be more freedom and prosperity than you have ever experienced in your lifetime? Would you participate in a revolution if you were assured that, in the end, all American citizens would pay their “fair share” of taxes to support a smaller, more efficient, Constitutional, Federal government? Would you participate in a revolution if you were assured that you would suffer no harm?” The site continues: “It is time for a ’21st Century American Revolution’ to purge Congress of all corrupt, career politicians who value the wishes of lobbyists over the will of the People.” While this is, ostensibly, an electoral revolution, the aims of the American Citizen Party are high, and their strategy is indeed provocative:

On January 20, 2013, your first act of resistance will be to stop paying corporate and individual income taxes. This single action represents the heart of the revolution and will weaken the enemies of freedom by robbing them of approximately $1.1 TRILLION per year in money that they need to survive. At the same time, it will stimulate the U.S. economy, create a dramatic rise in GDP and the stock market, create jobs, bring offshore corporate capital home, and set our Nation on the path of freedom and prosperity for generations to come.

So what are the electoral philosophies of a revolutionary conservative party that calls on its followers to stop paying income taxes? Presidential candidate Bob McNeil (who currently is the sole financier of the party and the chief vetter of its impressively large list of candidates) graciously agreed to answer our questions.

POLITICALCONTEXT.ORG: Is your party running candidates in the 2012 elections?

BOB MCNEIL: Yes.

PC: What’s the extent and reach of your field of candidates? Will you advance national candidates–for President, Vice President, U.S. Senate, House of Representatives? Will you advance state and local candidates? Where, and for what?

Bob McNeil

BM: The plan is to run American Citizen Party candidates to replace incumbent politicians at ALL levels of government. Currently, the Party has candidates/potential candidates for the following positions:

1. Bob McNeil – President of the United States
2. Laviere Rice – Arizona – Governor to replace Jan Brewer – Republican; or Senator to replace John Kyl – Republican
3. Macey Shapiro – Alaska – At-Large Representative to replace Don Young – Republican

The Party is actively recruiting candidates to run for additional seats, but, I believe a number of the newly-elected Tea Party-backed candidates, who now know that the Republican leadership in Washington does not support them, will switch from the Republican Party to the American Citizen Party, resulting in immediate national exposure and representation.

In addition, I believe that, with the American Citizen Party’s national exposure, before the next election, the country will witness a mass “retirement” of long-term, incumbent, professional politicians, leaving “open” seats for American Citizen Party candidates to fill.

PC: What’s the process for choosing and nominating your candidates? Do you have a general convention? Where and when will it be held?

BM: For now, candidates are approaching the Party because they possess the same values, and I am personally vetting them.

When people begin to awaken to the fact that there is only one Party with the solutions to our Nation’s problems, I believe campaign contributions will begin to flow at unprecedented levels.

When that occurs, the American Citizen Party will hold its first National Convention at the time and place of our choosing.

PC: What are the demographics of your existing base?

BM: All disaffected, free-thinking, freedom-loving American citizens, 18 years old and above, regardless of race, ethnicity, gender, sexual identity, appearance, physical ability, education level, or geographic location, estimated at 150 million people.

PC: What is your strategy for deepening your base within your existing demographic, and broadening your reach to other demographics?

BM: The 21st Century American Revolution provides a level of economic freedom not experienced by any person born in the last 100 years.  That’s a pretty strong opening message and resonates well with all free-thinking, freedom-loving Americans.

The Party will continue educating Americans about the original taxing clauses in the Constitution and the intent of the Founding Fathers when they wrote them.  We will also educate Americans about the misapplication of the tax laws, as reflected in our 100 year-old, progressive income tax system, and how returning to the Constitutional application of the original taxing clauses is the key to restoring our freedoms, holding Congress accountable for its actions, and reducing the size and scope of the Federal government.

In addition, we will also educate the American public about how to participate in the greatest act of civil disobedience in modern American history and how the Constitution protects them from harm when they do.

PC: In your opinion, what are the chief barriers to the viability and success of third parties in the United States?

BM: Differing petition requirements at the State level. Voter fraud at the precinct level. An uneducated, apathetic voting population. A population comfortable in its slavery. An overarching disbelief in what is possible. The support of the two major parties by the media. The marginalizing of third parties by the media. Muckrakers, yellow journalists and bottom-feeders in the print, radio and television media.

PC: Does your party make the opening of space to alternative candidates a major part of your public message? Do you have a strategy for the opening of political space which you have laid out for voters and activists?

BM: The American Citizen Party is a pro-Constitution, pro-growth, pro-life, pro-freedom party. Candidates who share those values are welcome.

PC: Do you work in solidarity with other political parties? If so, which ones? If not, why not?

BM: The American Citizen Party will work with any party that embraces the principles set forth above. We will work to defeat the candidates from the parties that do not.

PC: How do you raise funds for your operations? What methods of fundraising have proven to be most successful for your party in the past?

BM: To date, I have fully funded the American Citizen Party’s activities from my personal earnings as a business consultant. The American Citizen Party is registered with the Federal Election Commission and is designated a Political Action Committee, subject to all of the attendant rights, privileges and reporting requirements.

In July, 2010, the Party entered into a contract with Cardinals FEC Compliance Services in St. Paul, Minnesota under which Cardinals provides the services necessary to ensure that the Party complies with all Federal election laws and FEC reporting requirements.

The American Citizen Party website contains a “Contribute” tab here. On that page, there is an online donation form that captures all of the information necessary to comply with FEC reporting requirements. We accept all major credit cards and PayPal. There is also a link to a mail-in form for those who wish to contribute by personal check, cashier’s check, or money order here.

We have the message.  We have the plan.  We have the Party.  We have the candidates who will bring about the transformational change necessary to restore our country to its Constitutional principles. With national exposure, I believe that contributions will begin to flow at levels sufficient enough to allow American Citizen Party candidates to compete, and win, against any other candidate from any other Party.

PC: A broad, philosophical question: Why does your party exist?

BM: To restore freedom to ALL American citizens, and transform America into the global model of freedom and prosperity for its citizens to enjoy and the world to emulate.

PC: May we have a copy of your most recent national platform?

BM: Here it is now:

Abortion:  Women get pregnant by having sex with men.  Barring rape or incest, all other instances of sex are consensual.  We stand firmly on the side of the innocent, human babies and place responsibility where it belongs, with the women who say “Yes!” to sex.  In short, we encourage women to practice “vaginal responsibility” or take personal responsibility for their actions when they don’t.

Gun Control: We support the right of the American People to bear arms.  I am a former U.S. Marine, trained in the use of a variety of weapons and have a Texas Concealed Handgun License. That says it all.

Economy: Our 21st century economic plan returns $1.1 trillion to the American people; stimulates the economy at the local/county/state level, resulting in increased tax revenues; allows all Americans to spend, save, invest and give away their money as they choose; and reduces the size of the Federal government by 60% by eliminating failing programs, along with those programs/agencies that are not authorized by the Constitution.

Taxes: The Party’s taxing philosophy is this: “Rich, poor, or somewhere in between, if you breathe our air, drink our water, use our roads, and sleep under the blanket of freedom provided by our military, you should pay a tax.”  The plan is to eliminate our current, complex, confiscatory income tax system and return to the indirect and direct taxing methods provided in the Constitution.

Government Spending: The plan reduces the size of the Federal government by 60%, starting with the elimination of almost 500 government programs that fail to meet their objectives, as measured by the OMB’s Program Assessment Rating Tool (P.A.R.T.).   The additional savings will come from the elimination of all programs/agencies that are not enumerated in Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution.

Education:  Eliminate the Department of Education, which is not provided for in the Constitution.  The education of the population is the responsibility of the States, which will have adequate funds to do so from the increased tax revenues generated from the economic activity of their wealthier population.

Energy: Use all of America’s natural resources to provide adequate energy for an ever-expanding population, facilitate economic growth, and ensure the world’s highest standard of living for the People.  Drill here!  Drill now!  Build nuclear power plants.  Develop wind and solar power where practical.  The result will be a reduction in America’s dependence on foreign sources of energy.  Furthermore, as a global benefit, when we use less of the world’s energy resources, those resources become available for developing nations, thereby increasing the standard of living and improving the lives of billions of people.

Foreign Affairs:  Defend America’s allies in accordance with applicable treaties.  Act preemptively, based on actionable intelligence, to neutralize any direct or indirect threat to our Nation’s security.  The response will be swift, sure and sufficient to eliminate the threat, thereby preserving our Nation and protecting the People.

United Nations:  Remove the United Nations from U.S. soil.  Suspend the $2 billion in annual fees the United States pays.  Convert the United Nations building in New York into a world class university focusing on teaching math, science, the English language and free-market economics.

Death Penalty: We support the death penalty for treason, sedition and other heinous crimes.

Immigration Policies: Enforce the Federal immigration laws.  Build the fence.  No amnesty.   No social benefits for illegal aliens.  Impose sanctions on companies who hire illegal aliens.

Other Not Listed – Revolution : The 21st Century American Revolution begins with the stroke of a pen on Inauguration Day, January 20, 2013, at 1:00pm Eastern Standard Time,  in accordance with Article II, Section 2 of the Constitution – the power of the Presidential pardon.  The result will be a level of freedom and prosperity unseen by anyone in this country in the last 100 years.

PC: What else would you like our readers to know about your party?

BM: The American Citizen Party was formed as an alternative to the Democrat and Republican parties who, for the last 150 years, have failed to protect our freedoms granted by God and preserved by the U.S. Constitution. Its purpose is to unite all American citizens around the cause of freedom; instill a sense of pride in being an American; educate the People about their rights and responsibilities as citizens; motivate 535 citizens to run for national office to replace the corrupt, career politicians; persuade all Americans 18 years and older, to register as proud members of the American Citizen Party; and, inspire a sufficient number of Americans to exercise their most powerful weapon, their vote, to restore our Nation to its greatness. The result will be unprecedented freedom and prosperity, as envisioned by the Founding Fathers.

PC: May we have a brief bio from the person answering these questions? May we also have bios for the current Chairperson, Vice Chairperson, Treasurer, Secretary, and Executive Director of your party?

BM: This questionnaire was answered by Bob McNeil, Founder of the American Citizen Party and 2012 Presidential Candidate. Here is a short bio:

President and Treasurer of the Party:

Full name: Robert Allen McNeil
Date of Birth: January 23, 1949
Place of birth: Champion Clinic – Stuttgart, Arkansas
High school: Channelview High School, Channelview, TX – Graduated 1967 (top 10% of class)
College: University of Houston – Graduated December 1975 with BBA – Accounting, minor in Finance – 3.3 GPA
Military service: U.S. Marine Corps – 1968-1974 – Sergeant (E-5) – Honorable Discharge
Married:  1971
Divorced: 1983, remaining single by choice
Children – Two daughters
Grandchildren: Two boys, one girl
Work history:
Pre-College:
First job at age 15 as a greens keeper on a golf course
Subsequent jobs as a laborer at lumber yards, oil refineries, construction projects
Post-College:
1975-1988 – Tenneco Oil Company – Houston, TX & Oklahoma City, OK
Accountant
Internal Auditor
Division Auditor in Oklahoma City, responsible for all auditing functions of a $100 million division
1989-1993 – Enron Corp – Houston. TX
Internal Auditor for Enron Oil & Gas
Internal Auditor for Enron Natural Gas Pipeline Group
1993-present – Independent Business Consultant – Houston, TX
Provide audit consulting services to multinational corporations around the world

Vice-President:

Full name: Kelly Ann McNeil Evans
Date of Birth: January 18, 1977
Place of birth: Houston, Texas
High school: L.D. Bell High School, Hurst, Texas: Graduated May 1995 with Honors
College: Missouri Baptist University, St. Louis, Missouri: Graduated May 2001 with Honors (Bachelor of Science in Psychology and Human Services)
Married:  1998
Children – Two (one son and one daughter)
Work history:
Pre-College:
First job at age 16 at a Texas amusement park
Subsequent jobs in fast food during high school
Moved into administrative/management roles after high school and into college
Post-College:
1999-2004 – Missouri Baptist University, St. Louis, Missouri
Admissions Office Manager
Records Assistant
Transcript Evaluator
2010-Present – Grapevine, Texas
Homeschool Teacher
121 Community Church
Missions Assistant & Community Events Coordinator

Secretary:

Full name: Casi Lynn McNeil Renfro
Date of Birth: November 5, 1979
Place of birth: Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
High school: Lawrence D. Bell High School, Bedford, TX – Graduated 1998
Married:  1998
Children – One son
Work history:
Pre-College:
First job at age 14 as an actress at a local dinner theater
Subsequent jobs as a cashier at Spring Creek BBQ, tanning salon clerk, & pharmacy technician
Post-College:
2000-present
Craftmade International
Began in Customer Service, then moved into Data Processing and Shipping
Working in Purchasing for the past 6 years

PC: In what city and state is the national party headquarters located?  

BM: Austin, Texas

PC: What year was the party founded?   

BM: 2009

PC: Who were the leaders that founded the party?   

BM: Robert A. McNeil

PC: Any significant “firsts” for the party–Who was your first candidate on a ballot, who (if any) was your first candidate elected to office? 

BM: To date, there have been no American Citizen Party candidates on any ballot, for any public office, in the United States.  The 2012 election will be the “first”. The most significant “first” for the Party was its formation in 2009. Since then, there have been several:

1) Traveling the country, talking to everyday Americans about my plan to restore freedom to ALL American citizens, and getting positive responses.

2) Mailing copies of the plan to 500+ members of the U.S. House and Senate in February 2010 and learning the Congress isn’t interested in restoring our freedoms.

3) Confronting Senators Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) and John Cornyn (R-Texas) about their plan to restore freedom to ALL American citizens and discovering that neither has one.

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About Matt J. Stannard

Policy Director for Commonomics USA, longtime writer, speaker, and legal & policy consultant on economic justice and public deliberation.