Former Sen. Dean Barkley told tea partiers in an email Tuesday that they should join the Independence Party and rename it the Tea Party. Already, tea party-affiliated candidates are aligning themselves with Gov. Jesse Ventura’s former party, including 5th Congressional District GOPer Barb Davis White and Steve Wilson in the 1st Congressional District.
“I consider myself a political revolutionary, and therefore, I am one of you! I created the Independence Party in MN, and I have a plan,” Barkley wrote. “If enough tea partiers join the Independence Party, it becomes you! Think of it. YOU run the Independence Party, not the other way around! With all of the legal and political infrastructure elements it has. This will save lots of time and trouble.”
In a shift from the party’s more progressive background, the Independence Party has already garnered the support of a number of former Republicans running for governor, including Tom Horner and, until recently, Col. Joe Repya.
Barkley was a founder of the Reform Party, which later became the Independence Party. He was appointed by Ventura to fill the seat of the late Sen. Paul Wellstone in 2002.
Here’s Barkley’s full statement:
Dear Fellow Patriots!
Do you want the conservative movement to create real change? Then it must take the next step. Only by electing decent people who believe as you do, can our nation transform itself.
Hello, my name is Dean Barkley. I have spent the last twenty years trying to change the ways things are done by our corrupt two party system. I began by forming the Reform Party in Minnesota. Later, we changed the name to the Independence Party, ran candidates, and eventually elected Jesse Ventura as the most widely known governor in America. Like you, the traditional political parties hated us. I just ran for the US Senate, and received 15% of the vote – with no money! The point it: change can happen!
People nationwide understand how bankrupt the two party system is (and has bankrupted America, too!). To be effective, this movement must transform into being a real political force and fast. To do so, it must create the legal, financial, and staffing infrastructure that a real political party has. The Republican Party is trying to lure some of you into its folds with pretty promises. But don’t be fooled. They just want your time, money, and votes. And they will continue business as usual – and run things their way!
I consider myself a political revolutionary, and therefore, I am one of you! I created the Independence Party in MN, and I have a plan. If enough tea partiers join the Independence Party, it becomes you! Think of it. YOU run the Independence Party, not the other way around! With all of the legal and political infrastructure elements it has. This will save lots of time and trouble. The scattered tea party people become The Tea Party – in name as well as fact. A real party – that can change things. You can do this in two weeks. Register online at MNIP.org. If three hundred do, and become delegates, they will own the Independence Party. They can change its name to Tea Party – and inherit all the party structure you need! Register to be a delegate. You can do it online. But hurry, the online caucus closes on 2/28/2010.
Let’s get back to the future and back to the United States Constitution, limited government, and the fiscal common sense of living within our means.