The Constitution Party is an American Third Party, known for its right-wing political views. The party, founded as the U.S. Taxpayer's Party, has won few races, but has come close several times.
The party was founded in 1992, and in 1995, the Federal Election Commission gave it party status, albeit minor party status. The party's candidate in the 1994 Gubernatorial race in Pennsylvania, Peg Luksik, received over 10% of the vote. In the 2004 senate race, the party candidate in Pennsylvania's senate race against Arlen Specter, Party Chairman Jim Clymer, received 4% of the vote. Also in 2004, the party's candidate for a seat in the Montana House, Rick Jore, came within one vote of winning, although many Constitutionalists say the vote was rigged, as the Montana Supreme Court threw out several of Jore's ballots for having Xs over other votes, while not throwing out similiar Democratic ballots. This result flipped the Montana state senate to Democratic control.
Showings in Presidential Elections
The party has had moderate success with its presidential tickets for a third party. The following are its results, per election:
|Ticket||Election Year||Popular Vote||Percentage of Vote|
|Michael Peroutka/Chuck Baldwin||2004||144,498||0.12%|
|Howard Philips/J. Curtis Frazier||2000||98,022||0.09%|
|Howard Phillips/Herb Titus||1996||184,820||0.19%|
|Howard Phillips/Albion Knight Jr.||1992||43,369||0.04%|
It is widely agreed that the presence of Pat Buchanan in 2000 caused a large drop in the number of votes the party received in that election. The Constitution Party used the absence of Buchanan to improve on their results 40%, making them the only third party to gain ground in 2004.
The Constitution Party is the third largest party in California, with its American Independent Party branch. Many people note that this may be due to the fact that many of the members may have joined mistakenly thinking they were registering as independents.
In 2005, the head of the anti-immigrant Minuteman Project, Jim Gilchrist, announced he would run for the U.S. House under the Constitution Party's banner in California.
In 1999, Senator Bob Smith was briefly a member of the Constitution Party.
In 2004 (and 2008), many party activists tried to persuade Judge Roy Moore to run at the head of their party's ticket. Moore respectfully declined.