…….The Republican Liberty Caucus is a grassroots, activist-driven caucus within the Republican Party working to advance the core Republican principles of limited government and individual liberty.
…….Since the RLC’s formation in 1991, the organization has worked to (1) promote our ideals among Party officials and Party organizations, (2) identify and support candidates who agree with our ideals, and (3) vigorously promote Caucus membership among Republican Party registrants, officials, and officeholders.
…….As a 527 political organization with a Political Action Committee, the RLC has the ability to recruit and endorse candidates as well as introduce legislation via sympathetic legislators, draft legislation, lobby on legislative issues, and financially support pro-liberty candidates.
…….The RLC’s primary successes have focused on:
…….The following listing includes some of the organization’s accomplishments since it was formed. Please join us today!
• Since 1991, the RLC’s Liberty Index has provided a ranking of members of Congress on a scale related to their votes on preserving personal and economic liberty. This index is the only such compilation that marks members of Congress on their contributions to protecting social and economic liberties while serving in Congress.
Philip Blumel administered the World’s Smallest Political Quiz at the YRNC 2007 Convention in Hollywood, Florida.
• Since 1991, RLC members have reached thousands of Republicans using the World’s Smallest Political Quiz (developed by the Advocates for Self-Government). RLC members have used the quiz via Operation Politically Homeless booths at GOP state conventions, local Republican clubs, and various national events over the years. From its founding in 1991, the RLC has seen a significant rise in the number of Republicans who score in the ‘Libertarian’ quadrant. Without our outreach efforts, many Republicans would never self-identify as libertarians. View more of our outreach photos.
• Over the last several years, the RLC has focused its outreach on students. This has resulted in RLC tables and booths at Students for Liberty and Young Republicans Conventions and events. View our outreach photos at student events.
• In 2011, the RLC conducted outreach at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington, DC and gained additional visibility as well as numerous prospective members..
• The RLC has found strong allies in elected Republican Party leaders from across the country, including former state party GOP Chairs ranging from Matt Denny (Montana) to John Dendahl (New Mexico). Over the years, the RLC also has forged solid relationships with select members of the Republican National Committee.
• The RLC is working to change the makeup of leadership positions within the party and has identified RLC-friendly Republican Party leaders at every level of leadership, ranging from state College Republican leaders to members of the RNC. The RLC has recently had successes toward this end in California, Florida, North Carolina, and Texas. For example, several RLC members in North Carolina were appointed to the state Republican Party Platform Committee in 2009.
• In California’s Alameda County, the RLC held a majority of members on the 37-member Central Committee, with former California RLC Secretary Walter Stanley serving as Vice-Chair of the Alameda County GOP. Many other RLC members hold key positions in their local and state Republican Parties.
• Some early RLC members serve as advisors to members of Congress, so the RLC has pull in Congress. For example, former Pennsylvania RLC coordinator Norman Singleton serves as Legislative Director for Congressman Ron Paul (R-TX). Additionally, RLC member Don Ernsberger serves as Chief-of-Staff to Congressman Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA).
• Former RLC Advisory Board member Williamson M. Evers was confirmed Assistant Secretary in the Department of Education and served from 2007 to 2009. Dr. Evers directed the Office of Planning, Evaluation, and Policy Development. Before his appointment, Dr. Evers was instrumental in the founding of the RLC. He is known as one of the foremost scholars on education policy in the country.
Former Arizona RLC Chair Roy Miller poses with Congressman Jeff Flake. Miller delivered
a $1,000 check to Congressman Flake from the RLC-USA PAC in October 2008.
• In 2006, the RLC’s PAC made contributions to help re-elect Senator John Ensign, Congressmen Steve Chabot, Jeff Flake, and Ron Paul, and to elect Congressional candidate Peter Roskam. That year the RLC endorsed over 110 candidates and numerous ballot initiatives to curb eminent domain and state spending. In 2008, the RLC’s PAC made contributions to help re-elect Jeff Flake and subsequently the RLC endorsed over 220 pro-liberty candidates for political office. View a list of our past endorsements.
Reagan economist Steve Moore greets former Congresswoman Katherine Harris
at the RLC National Convention in 2006. Harris appeared to promote Senate candidacy.
• The RLC’s coalition of members in Congress include Jeff Flake (AZ), Dana Rohrabacher (CA), Tom McClintock (CA), Ed Royce (CA), Roscoe Bartlett (MD), Justin Amash (MI), Scott Garrett (NJ), Jim Jordan (OH), Jimmy Duncan (TN), Dr. Ron Paul (TX), and Jason Chaffetz (UT).
• The RLC has reduced the tax burden for thousands of Americans across the country. For instance, RLC members pushed a city tax rollback and blocked a $124 million school bond in Hays County, Texas in 2003. In 2008, RLC members in Sonoma County, California defeated a Republican-backed measure to increase the state sales tax by 1.5%, including new fees on wine products.
• In response to the Supreme Court’s Kelo v. New London (2005), Maine RLC Chair and ex-Representative Ken Lindell passed a bill that would forbid takings for economic development in Maine. RLC Honorary Chair in Georgia, State Sen. David Shafer, pressed the legislature for stronger restrictions on the use of eminent domain. Similarly, longtime RLC member and ex-Representative Toby Nixon of Washington organized a bipartisan group of legislators to draft a proposed amendment to the state constitution to tighten the definition of “public use.”
• As a result of a comprehensive RLC lobbying effort, both branches of the Florida legislature voted to refer a Constitutional Amendment on eminent domain to Florida voters in November 2006. Florida voters passed Amendment 8, which prohibits the transfer of private property taken by eminent domain to a private entity.
Florida RLC members lobbied at the office of State Rep. Gayle Harrell in 2008.
The Florida RLC has an annual lobbying day at the state Capitol in Tallahassee.
• RLC members in Florida, including Philip Blumel, George Blumel, and Bob Burg, mobilized to pass and defend an eight year term limit for legislators. The effort to stop the abolition of the term limits law in 2006 gained broad popular support, forcing the legislature to abandon plans to extend term limits to twelve years.
• In 2008, the RLC elected two of its own Board members to state legislatures. In Michigan, Kent County RLC Chair (and current U.S. Congressman) Justin Amash was elected in the Grand Rapids area and former RLC Board member Carol McGuire was elected to the New Hampshire legislature. In 2009, the RLC helped elect Dan Halloran to the New York City Council. Mr. Halloran formerly served as Chairman of the New York RLC. Electing our own members to state legislatures gives the RLC significant leverage to make a difference for liberty. View a list of our elected officials as well as our prominent former elected officials.
• In 2009, RLC-endorsed legislators in several states introduced state sovereignty resolutions modeled after a resolution drafted by Missouri Representative Jim Guest. RLC-endorsed legislators who introduced states rights legislation include Dan Itse in New Hampshire, Charles Key and Randy Brogdon in Oklahoma, Gregg Walker in Indiana, and Wendy Warburton in Montana.
• The RLC has formed a coalition of allies in targeted state legislatures throughout the country. RLC members have established working relationships with RLC-friendly legislators. Throughout the country, legislators routinely attend RLC meetings because they not only agree with RLC members on the issues, but also recognize the sphere of influence maintained by RLC members.
• The RLC has hosted events featuring Members of Congress, numerous state legislators, several key state GOP leaders, economists Steve Moore and Mark Skousen, plaintiff Dick Heller of the Supreme Court case Heller v. DC, and the late libertarian leader Roger MacBride. Over the years, several RLC fundraisers have been held to re-elect RLC-friendly members of Congress such as Ron Paul and Jeff Flake.
Maxine Johnson, a Missouri resident, pickets a plan by St. Louis aldermen to take her home. Across the country, RLC activists have worked to preserve property rights.
• The California RLC was an official proponent of Proposition 36, The Substance Abuse and Crime Prevention Act of 2000, which voters passed by 61% in 2000. The law allowed first-time non-violent drug offenders to receive drug abuse treatment rather than incarceration. The RLC has also taken unpopular positions on other state ballot initiatives, including Measure 37 in Oregon (2004), Proposal 8-1 in Michigan (2008), and Amendment 47 in Colorado (2008).
• The RLC has also supported the efforts of the Liberty Coalition and the Bill of Rights Defense Committee to oppose various national ID plans, including the PATRIOT Act, REAL ID, and FISA. As the conscience of the Republican Party, the RLC was one of the few Republican groups to sign on in opposition to these anti-freedom measures. Over the years, the RLC has also signed on to letters in opposition of domestic spying and eminent domain and in support of government transparency, fiscal accountability, and personal privacy.
• Former Maryland State Delegate and RLC member Don Murphy is the director of Republicans for Compassionate Access, a growing group of Republican legislators who believe in a patient’s right to choose a medical treatment under a doctor’s care. Additionally, former RLC National Board members Terry Nelson and Jerry Cameron are Board members of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP), a coalition of former law enforcement officers who oppose the War on Drugs. Additionally, former RLC Board member Rick Sincere is the founder and President of Gays and Lesbians for Individual Liberty. The RLC has long supported individual rights and opposed the Federal Marriage Amendment proposed by the Bush Administration.
• RLC member Laird Maxwell was the lead organizer of the effort to pass Proposition 207 in Arizona in 2006. The effort was spearheaded by Americans for Limited Government and included RLC activists such as RLC Secretary Aaron Biterman. The proposal passed by 64% and was notably the only eminent domain initiative in the country that passed that included language related to just compensation for regulatory takings. As a result of the initiative’s specific language, Arizona property owners whose land is taken via eminent domain for public use are entitled to just payment for the full market value of their property.
• RLC member Dick Heller of Washington, DC was the plaintiff in the landmark Supreme Court case Heller v. DC, which affirmed the individual right of gun ownership for residents of the District of Columbia and all 50 states and overturned a 30-year ban on handgun ownership by District residents. Mr. Heller spoke to Washington, DC area RLC members in July 2008. One of Mr. Heller’s attorneys, Bob Levy, is also an RLC member.
…….Since the RLC’s founding, all of its successes have occurred as a result of its dedicated members. Without our members and their passion for principle, the above accomplishments would not have been achieved. As our efforts continue into the future, we are grateful to our dedicated members and donors who have made these successes possible.