Friday, February 13, 2009

Transpartisan Alliance

Posted by: Liberal Arts Dude | February 13, 2009

I just got news of an interesting event to happen this week called the American Citizens’ Summit in Denver, Colorado organized by an entity called the Transpartisan Alliance:

Description The Transpartisan Alliance is an informal network of networks facilitating cooperation among individuals and organizations from all political points of view.

Mission 1) To engage the passion, brilliance and creativity of average citizens in a search for solutions to our most pressing challenges, and 2) empower a unified political voice capable of restoring a balance of power between the government, corporations, and the American people.

Values Principles agreed to by all Americans — unity, equality, liberty, dignity and self governance.

Their Board of Advisers include:

Brent McMillian, Political Director, Green Party Fred Smith, President, Competitive Enterprise Institute Nancy Ross, Political Director, Committee for a Unified Independent Party Grover Norquist, President, Americans for Tax Reform Michelle Bernard, President, Independent Women’s Forum Jodie Evans, Co-founder, Codepink Women for Peace Mark Gerzon, Author, Leading Through Conflict, President, Mediators Foundation Jesse Benton, Communications Director, Campaign for Liberty (Ron Paul) Jackie Johnson, Executive Director, National Congress of American Indians Rob Richie, Executive Director, Maya Enista, CEO, Sandy Heierbacher, Director, National Coalition for Dialogue and Deliberation Joan Blades, Co-founder,, President, Michael Ostrolenk, Founder, Liberty Coalition Peggy Holman, Author, The Change Handbook Chris Bui, Founder, 5th Medium I.C. John Steiner, Chair, Transpartisan Center John Briscoe, Vice President, Common Cause David Korten, Co-founder, Positive Futures Network Cheryl Graeve, Membership Director, League of Women Voters Juanita Brown, Co-founder, The World Cafe J. Manuel Herrera, Silicon Valley elected official Steve Bhaerman, Political comedian, Department of Heartland Security

In addition, they are convening a Transpartisan Cabinet which includes:

Monetary reform leader Ron Paul, co-founder of and President of Joan Blades, conservative activist Grover Norquist, co-founder of the Liberty Coalition Michael Ostrolenk, former Green Party presidential nominee Cynthia McKinney, human potential movement visionary Barbara Marx Hubbard, humorist Steve Bhaerman, and director of the Committee for a Unified Independent Party Jackie Salit. Pending invitations include Ralph Nader, as well as former Constitution Party presidential nominee Chuck Baldwin.

A close look at the composition of their Board of Advisors and Cabinet reveals some controversial groups that have been maligned on mainstream political media in one form or another like Code Pink and the CUIP. However, some of the other groups have solid reputations and are well-regarded as serious organizations even by those among the mainstream: FairVote, Common Cause, the Green Party, MoveOn, League of Women Voters.

This gathering appears to be the first major effort in recent years to organize third parties, reform organizations and other non-mainstream political reform groups under one umbrella. It would be interesting to see how Cynthia McKinney and Ralph Nader can find common ground with Ron Paul and Grover Norquist. Or for that matter, the CUIP with the League of Women Voters; FairVote and Common Cause with Code Pink. I will admit that I am unfamiliar with the other groups involved. But I am fascinated that this effort is even happening. Can something useful and productive come out of it? It is too early to tell. But I will be watching this effort closely in the next few months to see how it develops.

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