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The Federalist Party decoded: An interview with activist JD Rucker

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JD Rucker Federalist Party

“I decided that somebody’s got to do it, if nobody else will, then I must.”

I had the pleasure of speaking at length with head of the Federalist Party, political activist JD Rucker. I became intrigued by Rucker after I learned of the Federalist Party’s existence and their fundamentally different approach to challenging the two-party system. In our current climate of political mayhem, could a third-party be a feasible alternative for the somewhat ideologically homeless conservative? I thought speaking with Rucker would be a good place to begin.

From start to finish, the conversation with Rucker was both enlightening and heartening. Rucker’s understanding of what fundamentally plagues our political system is in congruence with many disillusioned conservatives—the Right’s disappointing failure to fight “big government” has morphed into a growing fondness for bloated bureaucracy. And therein, Rucker defines what he believes to be the purpose of the Federalist Party: “Our third party is designed in particular to essentially pull them [GOP] back to the Right, if that’s even possible. And if not, then we are prepared to take over.”

He sees the Federalist Party as a “reminder” that the GOP can no longer take the conservative vote for granted.  But Rucker isn’t obtuse on how we got here—he’s direct and forthright when he flatly states, “We have allowed the government to do this to us.”

He’s also not naïve about the abysmal success rate to which third parties typically fall privy. However, he does identify the Federalist Party strategy as decidedly different, proclaiming “the primary difference for us is that we are going to build this from the local level, up.”  He coins the Federalist Party’s approach as “bottom-up” in nature, focused on creating an initial footprint in everything from sheriff elections to city council elections to state legislative elections. And indeed, for a party focused on returning power to communities, this approach is refreshingly organic.

Rucker wrote a piece several weeks ago discussing how federalism isn’t about protecting states but rather about protecting the individual. When I asked him about this particular message, he expounded in detail on the government’s general failure to serve the “primacy” of the individual, who has now been belittled by the ever-expanding state.  Rucker then admits that Americans now are looking for “leaders to save them,” and this desire is fundamentally flawed: “Government should enable the people to find a solution—government was never designed to be the solution.”

In Rucker’s eyes, “the individual can solve problems for him or herself better than any government action.” And Rucker believes the Federalist Party is geared towards reintroducing the long-lost individual back into the political sphere, specifically by enabling and encouraging people to take more active roles in their communities.

The Federalist Party’s main goal is to demonstrate how genuinely small government—manifested as the “localization of efforts”—can benefit people’s causes more than a larger federal apparatus can. From Rucker’s point of view, federalism or “taking care of your own local area” is much more impactful than tackling a wide range of issues on a global scale. Given this metric holds true for both the conservative and the liberal, he envisions the Federalist Party as appealing to a variety of figures from across the political spectrum.

And baked into this understanding of federalism’s appeal is Rucker’s conception of what the party’s approach should be. Indeed, his vision for the Federalist Party is one prudently defined by longevity, rather than by capturing a few seats in 2018.  In fact, he could not have emphasized to me more strongly the importance of 2032 over the impending midterm elections.

But perhaps the most interesting part of my interview with JD revolved around his entrance into politics. It wasn’t a foray marked by a prestigious law degree or longish stint at a private equity firm.  Rucker described himself as simply a politically engaged person who realized about fifteen years ago that the Republican Party had approached a stage beyond saving and that it would be far better to structure a new party around a truly conservative perspective. Rucker succinctly explained his own involvement by stating, “Nobody else was doing it and I felt somebody needed to.”

What struck me as most impressive about Rucker, beyond his assessment of the current political climate and his prescription for reform, was his depthless humility. I am ending with his own words because I don’t believe I could do them quite justice. Needless to say, my interview with JD Rucker gives me hope that the citizenry is still capable of producing selfless and thoughtful leaders. In a time of an ever-expanding federal apparatus, made fat by unabated spending, I am encouraged by thinkers like JD who not only diagnose problems with poise but also have the drive to tackle them.  In the words of JD Rucker:

“I want to be clear. People like to put me down as ‘cofounder’ of the Federalist Party. I look at myself as specifically just a caretaker. Just to get this up and running until more people—better people, smarter people—can get involved. That is all.”

If you are interested in learning more about the Federalist Party and what Rucker and others are doing on behalf of conservatism, feel free to visit thefederalistparty.org.  You can follow JD Rucker on Twitter at @JDRucker.

Erielle Davidson is an economic research assistant at the Hoover Institution in Palo Alto, California. She completed a B.A. in Russian at Middlebury College with a specific focus on Eastern European politics. She has researched and written extensively on the geopolitical implications of terrorism in Putin’s Russia. She can be found on twitter at @politicalelle.

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5 Comments

5 Comments

  1. David Oslin (@hyperion5182)

    July 17, 2017 at 4:14 pm

    Well said and written. An excellent read.

  2. JC

    July 17, 2017 at 5:01 pm

    Great article! Hope to see more from you!

  3. Judith Irlacher

    July 18, 2017 at 5:38 am

    Knowing nothing of the Federalist Party, I am impressed with the opinions of J D Rucker, thank you for sharing his ideas!

  4. Susan Sylvia

    July 28, 2017 at 4:22 am

    I have been with JD (by email!) since Day One when he asked on his website The New Americana, ‘Should we do this?’ and I can say that everything the author says about him is true. He takes a Democratic approach to decision making and is an excellent team leader, while still very humble. He also has a very smart plan, using the latest technology and social media, to make this go, and he is savvy enough to observe what other parties have done wrong and to sidestep those pitfalls. I think that this third party, vs. others that have come and gone or simply languished, has a real chance to take off. And what better name for a party? I’m a member, and I hope others will join!

  5. Kim Gallagher

    July 28, 2017 at 6:14 am

    Ditto Susan.

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Culture and Religion

Dr. Michael Brown on Donald Trump fulfilling Bible prophecy with Jerusalem announcement

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Dr Michael Brown on Donald Trump fulfilling Bible prophecy with Jerusalem announcement

Many in the Jewish world believe that Jerusalem must be united and a Third Temple built before the Messiah can come. Christians have a similar interpretation of prophecy, except that it pertains to the 2nd coming of the Messiah. Dr. Michael Brown has perspectives on both ideas as a Messianic Jewish believer in Jesus Christ.

In this video, he discusses whether or not President Trump announcing recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel fulfills Bible prophecy. Spoiler: He doesn’t know, but he points to those who believe so. He also points out the hypocrisy of Muslim leaders attacking Jews in Israel for what a gentile in the United States announced.

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Opinions

Inside the Mitch McConnell circus

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Inside tMitch McConnell circus

The sad thing is, it is truly a circus.  The grassroots want Mitch McConnell out of the Senate, and he is telling loud and clear that the answer is No.  It’s no different than the “mouse” trying to get the “wolf’ in their place and make a break for it.  Hey, it’s simply just cold outside you know.

There is a group of conservatives that will always protest the likes of McConnell and they were around when Hoover, Ford, and Bush 41 screwed things up.  There just simply is not enough of them.  For real change to happen all Republicans must unite with the good guys and gals that work hard to do what is right, and winning elections regardless is not one of them.

Reference

King Mitch is the star of the stupidest show on Earth

https://www.conservativereview.com/articles/king-mitch-is-the-star-of-the-stupidest-show-on-earthWhat a circus! Everything to tantalize the senses from hearing the pompous moralites, to witnessing a Goldman Sachs carnival barker, to smelling the odor coming from the trunk-to-tail-linked highest echelons of the Republican Party. Listen to that calliope play!

And sex? We got it. Anything you want, allegations abound, and we can spend months talking about it, putting everyone’s focus on it, tweeting hot takes about it — all to make the race a sideshow about who is more moral and ethical. Because that’s how you put on the stupidest show on earth.

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Democrats

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy eyeing 2020 with Puerto Rico visit

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New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy eyeing 2020 with Puerto Rico visit

The newly-elected, progressive Governor of New Jersey (ex-Goldman Sachs executive Phil Murphy) is already eyeing 2020.

Murphy led a delegation yesterday to visit Puerto Rico, three months after Hurricane Maria. Digging further, a press release listed an extensive delegation including some curious choices, like appointed health officials from small towns with heavy Spanish-speaking (though not necessarily Puerto Rican-heavy) populations. It also includes the head of a leading Northeastern utility, PSE&G.

Last I checked, PSE&G has absolutely no business in Puerto Rico.

Ostensibly, this is for “relief efforts.” But no source document I could find, including that mentions actual relief efforts. No mention of what’s being brought down there. I suspect that’s because they probably aren’t bringing any relief supplies, no medicine, no equipment. Nothing. It’s just meetings, optics, maybe “fact finding.”

It should be obvious what’s really going on here.

Mainland public officials are going to Puerto Rico to recruit people — Puerto Ricans are birthright American citizens, have been since 1917 — to move to the mainland.

Upon arrival, those Puerto Ricans can legally claim “domicile” and register to vote (that is, if they were citizens to begin with) within any of our 50 states.

But Murphy’s team is looking to pack his state — a deep blue New Jersey which went for Hillary by a 55%-42% margin last year — and other likely settlement destinations (count on them also being blue states) with even more likely Democratic voters.

Murphy just got elected by a double-digit margin in New Jersey, ending eight years of term-limited and integrity-limited Republican Chris Christie’s bad beach manners. He does not take office until January 16, 2018.

Murphy does not need more help in re-election.

This is about the next presidential election.

The progressives are already packing the voter rolls.

But this trip is, very likely, using public funds, whether from Murphy’s transition budget or elsewhere. Given New Jersey’s legendary and current budget problems,

Call this what it is: A taxpayer-funded, Democratic voter-registration drive.

This guy is running for President. He’s already working on votes.

And bet that his delegation is recruiting Puerto Ricans to move to the mainland. Of course, those Puerto Ricans — already citizens — would become eligible to vote in the next Presidential election.

How that use of taxpayer money is legally suspect. These expenditures are subjects that are within the jurisdiction of the Justice Department (which has used its discretion to investigate matters of far less potential impact) to inquire.

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