If Abraham Lincoln were alive today he might find some familiar and welcome company in Missouri.
The “Modern Whig” Party has made a revival, and on Lincoln’s 200th birthday party members are trying to make some noise politically much like Lincoln did in his career.
Lincoln was originally a member of the Whig Party before converting over to the Republican Party. The Party was most active from 1833 to 1856.
Modern Whig Party Southeast Coordinator Rhonda Carsten said she joined the group last year while promoting the Pickens Plan. She said the party endorsed the plan and she decided to join.
She said Iraq and Afghanistan veterans who saw a need for a third party formed the party.
“This whole party was the brain child of active duty servicemen and non active that had a lot of time overseas to sit and talk about what they liked and didn’t like about American politics,” she said. “They founded this party.”
The Chairman of the Missouri Party, George Mills is an aviator in the Missouri Army National Guard and also a veteran of “Operation Iraqi Freedom.”
Carsten said the party is described as fiscally conservative but socially liberal. She also said a strong national defense system is also a platform.
“The Whigs offer a kind of a centrist common sense approach to politics,” she said. “We believe for the sake of our democracy a two-party system is unhealthy by nature. A lot of us are fed up with the big money and the big corruption of the major parties and the lack of choice when it comes to state and national elections.”
Carsten said the party already has a strong presence in 26 states and will have many candidates running for state offices and eventually Congress. She is optimistic that Missouri could have some candidates by 2010. She said it is hard to put a firm number on the number of members the group has because the movement is growing so fast. She said in less than two years the party has grown to between 25,000 and 30,000 nationally.
“There’s no way in four years we’re going to be running somebody for President, but there’s certainly nothing that will stop us from running state candidates and eventually U.S. Congressmen,” she said.
Carsten said the party is not looking for money or donations but simply just wants to get the word out and let people know they are here.
“I think it’s important to get a political buzz out there because there is so much of it,” she said.
For more information, go to www.modernwhig.org.