Maryland attorney Michael Peroutka is currently the party's designated "provisional" Presidential candidate for 2004. Party founder and three-time Presidential nominee Howard Phillips has already endorsed Peroutka for the nomination.
He has a long record of conservative activism, particularly on behalf of the pro-life and pro-gun causes. Peroutka's strong Christian beliefs also influence his political views. He advocates the view that the Constitution is founded on the Bible and it can't be sustained without a biblically-grounded judiciary.
Taxes & Spending:
"Eliminate income tax, corporate tax, & estate tax. (Jan 1996) We will propose legislation to abolish the Internal Revenue Service, and will veto any authorization, appropriation, or continuing resolution which contains any funding whatsoever for that illicit and unconstitutional agency. We are opposed to the flat-rate tax proposals that are being promoted as an improvement to the current tax system. The Sixteenth Amendment does not provide authority for an unapportioned direct tax."
"Moreover, it is our intention to replace entirely the current tax system of the U.S. government (including income taxes, Social Security taxes, estate taxes, and inheritance taxes)."
"Itís time to insist on a Constitutional budget, coupled with the elimination of the income tax, the corporate tax, the estate tax, and all taxes which unfairly and improperly enable Federal bureaucrats to invade our privacy, regulate our conduct, or steal from us the savings and earnings to which we and our families are entitled, and on which civil government has no legitimate claim." Social Services Funding: "As we abolish domestic and foreign welfare, the wealth and well-being of every working American family will be expanded by the complete elimination of the income tax and other direct Federal taxes.
"The message of Christian charity is fundamentally at odds with the concept of welfare maintenance as a right. In many cases, welfare provisions by the Federal government are not only misdirected, but morally destructive. It is the intended purpose of civil government to safeguard life, liberty and property ó not to redistribute wealth. Such redistribution is contrary to the Biblical command against theft."
"We encourage individuals and families to fulfill their personal responsibility to help those in need through tithes, offerings, and other acts of charity."
"The nationís churches and synagogues should manifest their faith by operating effective programs to assist those who are in need."
Welfare: "Charity, and provision of welfare to those in need, is not a Constitutional responsibility of the federal government. Under no circumstances should the taxpayers of the United States be obligated, under penalty of law through forced taxation, to assume the cost of providing welfare for other citizens."
Security & Terrorism: Howard Phillips: "There is no war on terrorism. Congress has not declared any such war.
With those words, a three-time presidential hopeful (Phillips) told a weekend seminar sponsored by Accuracy in Academia that President Bush should not go to war with Iraq without the constitutional blessing of a formal declaration of war. Source: NewsMax.com
Foreign Affairs: "The only Constitutional purpose and basis of foreign policy is to serve the best interests of the U.S., not to police the world.
Education: "Education should be free from all federal government subsidies, including vouchers, tax incentives, and loans, except with respect to veterans.
"Because the federal government has absolutely no jurisdiction concerning the education of our children, the United States Department of Education should be abolished; all federal legislation related to education should be repealed."
Healthcare: "The Constitution Party opposes the governmentalization and bureaucratization of American medicine. Government regulation and subsidy constitutes a threat to both the quality and availability of patient-oriented health care and treatment."
Social Security:" The Social Security trust should not be a "rainy day" fund which politicians can pirate, or from which they can borrow to cover their errors and pay for their excesses."
"Social Security will be privatized, with beneficiaries receiving all the money they have been promised. ...we believe an individual who has contributed to Social Security be allowed to withdraw contributed funds and transfer them to an IRA or similar investment under his control."
Illicit Drugs: Evidentally, the Party sees this a non-federal issue, leaving penalties to the states to decide. "The Constitution Party will uphold the right of states and localities to restrict access to drugs and to enforce such restrictions in appropriate cases with application of the death penalty."
Gun Policy: "The Constitution Party upholds the right of the citizen to keep and bear arms. We oppose attempts to prohibit ownership of guns by law-abiding citizens, and stand against all laws which would require the registration of guns or ammunition.
Abortion Policy: "The pre-born child, whose life begins at fertilization, is a human being created in Godís image. The first duty of the law is to prevent the shedding of innocent blood. It is, therefore, the duty of all civil governments to secure and to safeguard the lives of the pre-born."
Environmental Policy: "We call for repeal of federal wetlands legislation and the federal Endangered Species Act. Moreover, we oppose any attempt to designate private or public property as United Nations World Heritage sites or Biosphere reserves. We call for an end to United States participation in UN programs such as UNESCO, Man and the Biosphere, and the UN Council on Sustainable Development. We oppose environmental treaties and conventions such as the Biodiversity Treaty, the Convention on Climate Control, and Agenda 21, which destroy our sovereignty and right to private property."
Minority Issues: "The federal government should discontinue affirmative action programs.
Civil Liberties: In response to a group's efforts to hold a Pro-
Life meeting, a Constitution Party of New York official said, "This
is not the American way; it directly violates the right of free
speech and is a denial of civil rights."
When asked if the Constitution Party would hold the same view if
access was denied to pro-abortion groups, the official stated, "While our
party is completely 100 percent pro-life, the issue here is not about
abortion, it is about adhering to the Constitution...So my answer is Yes, I
would support their use of the building."
Regarding drug law arrests, the 2000 Constitution Party platform states, "...we will take care to prevent violations of the Constitutional and civil rights of American citizens. Searches without probable cause and seizures without due process must be prohibited, and the presumption of innocence must be preserved."