Unity Party of America
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Unity Party of America
Unity Party of America
ChairpersonBill Hammons
Presidential nomineeBill Hammons
Vice Presidential nomineeEric Bodenstab
Founded2004
IdeologyCentrism
Political positionCentre
Colors 
Slogan"Not Right, Not Left, But Forward!"
Seats in the Senate
Seats in the House
State Governorships
State Upper Chamber Seats
State Lower Chamber Seats
Territorial Governorships
Territorial Upper Chamber Seats
Territorial Lower Chamber Seats
Website
unityparty.us

The Unity Party of America is a centrist national political party in the United States founded on November 4, 2004 with the slogan "Not Right, Not Left, But Forward!"[1] The party is officially recognized by the State of Colorado[2] and has members in 40 states.[3]

History

The Unity Party grew out of the grassroots group named Runners for Clark which supported General Wesley Clark's 2004 presidential campaign by raising campaign contributions and awareness of Clark's run for the presidency; Runners for Clark morphed into Unity Runners and then into the Unity Party.[4][5]

Bill Hammons of Texas, New York and Colorado founded the Unity Party in 2004 as chairman and ran as the Unity Party of America candidate for Colorado's 2nd congressional district, centered on Boulder, in 2008[6] and again in 2010.[7] By that point the Unity Party had expanded beyond Colorado to 27 states.[8] He then ran for U.S. senate in Colorado in 2014 before running for the senate again in 2016 and then for Colorado governor in 2018 (the "Unity" voter affiliation option in Colorado is a direct result of his Senate candidacy).[9][10][11][4]

In 2012, veteran and Gold Star father Jim Pirtle of Colorado Springs declared as a Unity Party candidate for congress.[12]

In June 2017, the Unity Party achieved full recognition as a minor party by the state of Colorado, and its candidates in the state no longer need to petition onto the ballot, but instead just need a "show of hands" at a party assembly. By 2017, the party had spread to 37 states.[13][11][14][15]

In September 2017, Unity Party members decided to begin referring to themselves as "Uniters."[16]

In October 2018, Hammons was quoted as saying, "God did not ordain two parties in the United States," and went on to say one goal of his gubernatorial run was to help put a Unity Party Presidential candidate at the top of the ballot in Colorado in 2020.[17]

In June 2019, Rebecca Keltie of Colorado Springs became the first female Unity Party candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives, and in September 2019 the Unity Party U.S. Senate candidacy of Arvada's Joshua Rodriguez created the first-ever contested Unity Party nomination race.[18][3]

Bill Hammons and Eric Bodenstab were nominated for President and Vice President, respectively, in an online convention held over WebEx on April 4, 2020.[19] Hammons and Bodenstab made it onto the ballot in Colorado,[20] Louisiana[21] and New Jersey.[22]

Ideology

The Unity Party has been described as centrist, and the founder as "Mr. Middle".[23][24]

Platform

As of 2014, the Unity Party platform was outlined as supporting a balanced budget amendment, an elimination of the federal income tax, a health care tax deduction, Social Security reform, term limits, gerrymandering reform,[25] with founder Bill Hammons also supporting space exploration as of 2010.[26]

In popular culture

In the Red World modification of the strategy game Hearts of Iron IV, Unity Party founder Bill Hammons is portrayed as the head of state of the Midwest Union, a fictional successor state to the United States of America with a "centrist" government. Fellow real life figures including former Colorado Governor Bill Owens, former Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein and former Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Rodham (Hillary Clinton in real life) are portrayed as leaders of Midwest Union political parties.[27]

References

  1. ^ "Unity candidate running for governor". The Fort Morgan Times. Retrieved 2019.
  2. ^ "Political Party Directory". Colorado Secretary of State. Retrieved 2019.
  3. ^ a b "Colorado's tiny Unity Party facing first-ever primary in US Senate race". Colorado Springs Gazette. Retrieved 2019.
  4. ^ a b "Unity Party Reaches Minor-Party Status in Colorado". Westword. Retrieved 2019.
  5. ^ "Unity Party of Utah". Salt Lake City Weekly. Retrieved 2019.
  6. ^ "Bill Hammons (CAS '97) For US Congress". NYU Arts and Science Alumni Blog. Retrieved 2019.
  7. ^ "Unity Party's Hammons to challenge Polis for 2nd CD seat in 2010". Daily Camera. Archived from the original on June 26, 2009. Retrieved 2019.
  8. ^ "Unity Party aims for a place on Utah ballot". Deseret News. Retrieved 2019.
  9. ^ "Bill Hammons: U.S. Senate". Boulder Daily Camera. Retrieved 2019.
  10. ^ "2019 Voter Registration Statistics" (PDF). Colorado Secretary of State. Retrieved 2019.
  11. ^ a b "Unity Party becomes "minor party" in Colorado". Denver Post. Retrieved 2019.
  12. ^ "Pirtle to the rescue?". Colorado Springs Independent. Retrieved 2019.
  13. ^ "Unity Party is now officially a minor party in Colorado". Colorado Secretary of State. Retrieved 2019.
  14. ^ "Meet The Man Who Founded The Unity Party, Colorado's Newest Official Minor Party". Colorado Public Radio. Retrieved 2019.
  15. ^ "Unity Party candidate for governor Bill Hammons hoping to make waves in 2018 election". The Denver Channel. Retrieved 2019.
  16. ^ "Colorado Unity Party nicknames itself the 'Uniters'". Colorado Springs Gazette. Retrieved 2019.
  17. ^ "Colorado's dark horses: What makes non-major-party candidates run?". Colorado Springs Gazette. Retrieved 2019.
  18. ^ "Unity Party's Rebecca Keltie to take on Doug Lamborn for Congress". Colorado Springs Gazette. Retrieved 2019.
  19. ^ "Unity Party of Colorado & America Conventions Go 100% Online". Unity Party of America. Retrieved 2020.
  20. ^ "2020 General Election Candidate List". Colorado Secretary of State. Retrieved 2020.
  21. ^ "What's on the Ballot - Bossier Parish". KSLA. Retrieved 2020.
  22. ^ "County Clerks To Draw For Ballots At 3 PM". New Jersey Globe. Retrieved 2020.
  23. ^ "Colorado just got a new third party, and it's centrist. Here's what that means". The Colorado Independent. Retrieved 2019.
  24. ^ "Meet Mr. Middle, the Unity Party's nominee for U.S. Senate in Colorado". The Colorado Independent. Retrieved 2019.
  25. ^ "Want to support a third party? Here are your options". Deseret News. Retrieved 2019.
  26. ^ Schrader, Ann (June 25, 2010). "Stars were aligned for New Mexico's spaceport". Denver Post. Retrieved 2019.
  27. ^ "Unity Party press release". Unity Party. Retrieved 2020.

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