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A Cult By Any Other Name
The New Alliance Party Dismantled and Reincarnated

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Table of Contents

Executive Summary

I. For 15 years, the New Alliance Party (NAP) has been a fixture on the fringe of left-wing American politics, a vehicle used by its behind-the-scenes leader, Dr. Fred Newman, to achieve power.

II. In conjunction with his NAP activities, Fred Newman operates a collective of for-profit ventures. Most notorious of these are his therapy centers, at which, it has been charged, Newman administers an unconventional brand of psychiatric treatment that exploits the emotional weaknesses of his clients. Newman also uses these centers to recruit volunteers for NAP.

III. Newman and NAP chair Lenora Fulani have frequently peppered their writings and speeches with Jew-baiting remarks. In a notorious 1985 speech, Newman announced that in response to the Holocaust, Jews became "stormtroopers of decadent capitalism." Newman and Fulani lionize Nation of Islam leader Minister Louis Farrakhan, and have defended his hate-filled diatribes against Jews.

IV. NAP has also kept itself busy staging numerous election campaigns, including runs for U.S. President. As the partyís presidential candidate in 1992, Lenora Fulani qualified for $2 million in Federal matching funds. Former members charge NAP with misusing these Federal dollars; they claim it was largely distributed to Newman-owned businesses for services never performed. A recent preliminary audit by the Federal Election Comission found that $600,000 of the Federal funds were used improperly.

V. In December 1994, NAP announced that it would be dissolving itself and joining forces with the Patriot Party, a group largely comprised of political moderates inspired by the 1992 Presidential candidacy of H. Ross Perot. To casual observers, this union was inexplicable. But a look at NAPís record is illuminating: over the years, the party has repeatedly changed its message in the hopes of expanding its membership base and overtaking successful organizations.

VI. The Patriot Party appears to be NAPís latest target. At a convention in April 1994, when independent Perot-type parties from across the country joined to form the National Patriot Party, NAPS influence on the gathering was substantial. Members of the group gained half of the Patriot Partyís 16 leadership positions. Several state parties in attendance ultimately decided not to join the Patriots because of NAPs presence.

VII. NAPs rhetoric then underwent a substantial transformation. Seemingly overnight, the group replaced its radical mantras with a more moderate vocabulary. Former NAP members currently write for, edit and publish the Patriot Partys newsletter, and have been widely visible as media spokesmen for the party. Nevertheless, the full extent of NAPís influence on the Patriot Party and its agenda remains unclear.

VIII. As polls find more and more Americans expressing the need for a third major political party, NAPís current position within the Patriot Party becomes disturbing. That a group with a record of manipulating the political system and maligning the Jewish community may be feeding off this swell of third-party interest plainly merits the attention of the news media and the American public.

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Early in December 1994, the radical left-wing New Alliance Party (NAP) announced that the time had come to move to the center. NAP, which had long claimed to be a champion of the poor and minority communities, explained that for months it had been cooperating with a largely white, middle-class, politically centrist organization called the Patriot Party; it would now be expanding this relationship further by dissolving itself and joining forces with that party. By all appearances, the Patriot Party seemed an unlikely suitor for the far more radical NAP. Yet, to those closely familiar with NAP, the merger was less surprising.

For, while NAP1 has often devoted much energy to touting its ideological stances, a look at its record reveals that the party has seldom actually taken any steps to pursue its stated goals, and that it has in fact often worked against them. The group has outwardly condemned anti-Semitism, yet its own rhetoric has often been tainted by Jew-baiting. NAP has waged battles to open the electoral process, yet it has simultaneously thwarted the campaign efforts of other political underdogs. The party has attracted followers by advocating a host of left-oriented positions, but has inexplicably thrown its support behind politicians who exhibit disdain for liberal causes.

1 As noted above, the New Alliance Party no longer exists as a separate entity, but instead considers itself to be part of the national Patriot Party. Nevertheless, in the interest of clarity, the former New Alliance Party will be referred to throughout this report as simply the New Alliance Party (NAP).

As the dismantled New Alliance Party now reassembles itself within the independent Patriot Party, there is reason to suspect that, though NAP is changing its name, it is not changing its tune. Under the New Alliance Party banner, the group amassed a record of anti-Semitism, administered an eccentric form of psychotherapy in its community clinics in order to recruit members, and repeatedly attempted to take over thriving political organizations, particularly ones in the minority community.

It now appears to have set its sights on the Patriot Partyóan expanding, independent political movement initially organized by supporters of Ross Perotís 1992 presidential candidacy. At the Patriot Partyís founding convention in April 1994, NAP members skillfully insinuated themselves into the upper echelons of the Patriot leadership, and introduced changes to party policy. In subsequent months, one of NAPís leaders, Lenora Fulani, has represented the Patriot Party in media forums, while other NAP members write, edit and publish the partyís newsletter, Patriot News.

It is obviously troubling that a group like NAP, with its record of exploitation and anti-Jewish rhetoric. has now located a new vehicle for employing its deceptive tactics. If its past behavior is any indication of the groupís future ambitions, NAPís role within the Patriot Party should be regarded with caution. This report documents NAPís past activities with such concerns in mind.

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The New Alliance Party

For 15 years, the New Alliance Party (NAP) has been a fixture on the margins of American left-wing politics, and over time has expanded its sphere of influence beyond its New York base, to numerous cities across the country. The party, which has promoted itself as a "Black-led, multi-racial, pro-socialist, pro-gay" organization, has been chaired since 1988 by Dr. Lenora Branch Fulani, a black Philadelphia-born psychologist.

A charismatic and articulate political activist, Fulani has used her position to advocate a host of traditional progressive causes, including the institution of a single-payer health care system, environmental reform, and gay and lesbian rights. The party has also attracted much press attention for its drives to open the electoral process and to launch a national independent political party.

On the surface, what emerges from its rhetoric is the image of an idealistic political group offering up an attractive social agenda. In reality, though, NAPís progressive slogans are only clever packaging for an organization with virtually no ideological vision, whose operating motive appears to be achieving power. The partyís chief strategist and undisputed leader, Dr. Fred Newman, works primarily behind the scenes. Although he is Jewish, Newman has used his party post to air anti-Semitic diatribes and to support individuals at odds with the Jewish community.

In addition to NAP, Newman operates a complex and prosperous collective of for-profit companies, with the help of party members. The most widespread and lucrative of Newmanís businesses have been his therapy centers, at which, former NAP members charge, Newman administers an unconventional brand of psychiatric treatment that exploits the emotional weaknesses of clients. Patients are encouraged to break off connections with family and friends, and are steered toward membership in NAP.

In December 1994, NAPís weekly newspaper, The National Alliance, announced in a bold headline that "This is the last issue of the National Alliance." The paperís lead article told readers that NAPís leadership would be dissolving the party, claiming that "being a party of the Ďleftí is inconsistent with the new alliances being built among the disempowered." It urged adherents to join New Yorkís Independence Party and the national Patriot Party.

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A Newer Alliance

The national Patriot Party, formed in April of 1994, traces its roots to the 1992 independent presidential candidacy of Texas billionaire H. Ross Perot. Early in his campaign, Perot found he had the support of millions of primarily white, middle-class Americans frustrated with a two-party system they believed to. be out of touch. For these men and women, Perotís independent candidacy opened a window of opportunity for "ordinary citizens" to become part of the political process. His run set off a wave of grassroots activity that saw the creation of independent political parties across the country.

In the early months of 1993, NAP learned of several of these groups, specifically, the Patriot Parties of Pennsylvania, Virginia and California, and began to build ties with them. One year later, in April 1994, at an "Inaugural Convention" held in Arlington, Virginia, the Patriots and other like-minded independents met to establish a new national third party, calling it the Patriot Party. NAP members took an active role at the convention, and were elected to eight of the partyís sixteen posts, the most important of which were party secretary and party treasurer.

Fulani was quick to admit that this political marriageóbetween largely white, middle-class Perot-backers and the "Black-led, multi-racial" New Alliance Partyódid not appear tenable. But, waving away the apparent incompatibilities, Fulani told The National Alliance that the common bond between the groups was "democracy." "Both groups of activists," she insisted, "and the constituencies they have organized, share a fundamental commitment to democracy, a faith in the ability of ordinary citizens to make their own decisions."

Over the years, however, NAPís own commitment to democracy, as well as to the other values it has claimed to revere, has been less than steadfast. Party ideological statements of one moment regularly clash with those made shortly thereafter. Political figures have often been the recipients of the groupís lavish praise, only to be roundly condemned the following week. Former party members have confessed to having been drawn into the group because of its lofty goals, but have left disenchanted, upon recognizing that NAPís leadership appears to have no intention of actually realizing its stated mission. These former members have also countered the partyís oft-repeated description of itself as "black-led" and "multi-racial," claiming that the partyís racial composition is nearly all white. As this report will demonstrate, when it comes to the New Alliance Party, little is what it appears to be.

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The Roots of Deception

Established in 1979 by Fred Newman, the New Alliance Party has been the most steady and successful of a stream of political operations Newman has launched over the last 25 years. During the early I 1960s Newman, who holds a doctorate in philosophy from Stanford University, taught at the City College of New York. Believing that students with low grades would be more likely to be drafted to serve in Vietnam, Newman claims he gave Aís to his entire class, in what he called "a semi-anarchistic, anti-war protest." He then quit the teaching profession, and started up the Centers for Change (CFC), describing it as "a revolutionary cadre collective" that promoted "alternative schools and alternative living arrangements."

Among its facilities, the commune offered a therapy clinic that administered its own "alternative" form of treatment, based on combined principles of experimental psychology and Marxism-Leninism. The practice, which Newman called "social therapyí argued that personal crises stem from bourgeois influences, and that a patient could cure himself only by actively staging a personal "proletarian revolution." In practical terms, the patient was instructed to dedicate his energies to social activism in order to recover, for it was only by changing the world around him, Newmanís theory claimed, that the client would resolve the problems within. Not surprisingly, Newmanís patients were urged to perform their therapeutic works of activism for CFC itself, and the center soon emerged as Newmanís primary and most effective recruiting tool.

In the summer of 1974, Newman dismantled the Centers for Change. and encouraged his following of approximately 50 to join the Lyndon LaRouche-led National Caucus of Labor Committees (NCLC), enthusiastically declaring that "With our comrades [in NCLC] we will organize the working class to create a new world of possibility for itself." Despite Newmanís announcement, however, at the time of the merger, NCLC had already begun an extreme swing to the political right. NCLCís emergent ideological shift prompted Newman, barely a month after he had joined up with the group, to swiftly pull his cohorts out of LaRoucheís anti-Semitic conspiracy-oriented organization,2 resolved to form a new political entity of his own. Though their period of public cooperation had been brief, critics charge that, in this short space of time. Newman managed to quickly absorb LaRoucheís methods of operation, and that Newman has applied LaRoucheís manipulative cult-like tactics to his own political maneuverings ever since.

2 See also the ADL publications. "The LaRouche Network: A Political Cult"í 1982 and "The LaRouche Political Cult: Packaging Extremism." 1986

Upon his departure from NCLC, Newman formed the International Workers Party (IWP), whose ultimate goal was to stage an "international socialist revolution" in cooperation with other working-class organizations. Like the Centers for Change, IWP raised funds and recruited members by operating a "social therapy" collective that was open to the public. Therapists were generally IWP members trained in "social therapy" by Fred Newman, and were encouraged to steer clients toward doing "revolutionary" work for IWP.

The partyís newspaper, The International Worker, included attacks on members of the left, and targeted "Black Nationalism, Puerto Rican Nationalism, Womenís Liberationism, Gay Pride, Block Associationism and Community Controlism" as "social fascistic."3 That these stances are the polar opposite of the positions taken at other times by NAP, demonstrates Newmanís flexible approach to political principles.

3 Jackson Advocate. June. 1985

Newman has stated that IWP disbanded in 1976, but several recent accounts from former members of the New Alliance Party contradict this claim. William Pleasant, a former high-ranking member and editor of NAPís weekly National Alliance, told the Black-oriented, New York-based City Sun last year that not only does Newman still run IWP, but that Pleasant himself "was a member of the International Workers Party, which is an underground Marxist-Leninist party.... Itís still in existence and they still collect dues from people every week. Itís the party that created NAP."

Kelly Gasinke, a member of NAP from 1987 until 1992, described the orientation process for new members of IWP. She explained to the City Sun that "when you are going to join this secret conspiratorial organization." you are asked "if you are willing to become part of a Marxist-Leninist organization. And they tell you that itís a conspiracy to overthrow the government. Itís a combat organization that has a revolutionary strategy."

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Mind Over Matter

With his invention of the New Alliance Party in 1979, Newman began to expand the size and influence of his therapy practice, and eventually established four facilities in New York City as well as individual centers in nine other cities across the country.

Colorful fliers promoting these centers promised prospective patients that they would learn "How to stop abuse toward yourself and others," and assuringly told readers that "Living in a crazy society makes us crazy." Literature for the East Side Institute for Short Term Psychotherapy, a facility at which Newman and a team of nine others offer a two-year course of training in the techniques of "social therapy," praised the therapyís ability to help "people deal powerfully and actively with their lives." The language was benign and often cheerful, but a step inside the doors of these Newmanite centers has uncovered a far more frightening world.

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A Memberís Tale

In 1985, lured by the promise of "non-racist, non-sexist, non-homophobic therapy," Marina Ortiz entered into treatment with Newman. After a year of sessions, Ortiz told the The New York Observer in 1992, her therapist managed to convince her that "the rest of the world, even your immediate family, was the enemy." Confronted by this daunting prospect, Ortizís therapist urged her to become a member of some sort of group. With its literature conveniently posted about the therapy clinic, NAP became the natural choice for Ortiz.

As a new member of NAP, Ortiz was quickly introduced to the controlling influence the party held over its followers. She was encouraged to move into an apartment on the Upper West Side, which she shared with other members of the party. She was soon awarded a position as a writer for The National Alliance, and was asked to work on several of the partyís election campaigns. But, as she told The City Sun in September of 1993, Ortiz eventually learned that she was being manipulated:

They take their time to draw you in, and the bottom line is that they want you to join so you can be a slave laborer for Fred Newman.... They give you some responsibility on some cultural and political projects, and then they start making more and more demands on you.

Former member William Pleasant provided The City Sun with an account of the financial hold Newman has over NAP loyalists:

He [Newman] owns and supplies them with employment and housing, and he pays them $250 a week. They have to pay for their social therapy; 99 percent of them are on social therapy. They have to pay their party dues to be a part of IWP. You have to pay $50 to $100 every two weeks. They never live in Black and Latino communities except when they use them as poster children, and that allows them to raise money from white liberals. And they go out and beg for money. They also do telemarketing and door-to-door canvassing....

While these tales call into question "social therapyís" therapeutic value, Newman has claimed to find numerous outlets for it. According to the East Side Institute, it has trained the staffs of hospitals and mental health centers throughout New York City, as well as school psychologists, sociaj workers and guidance counselors working for the New York City Board of Education.

Members in Philadelphia have similarly put "social therapy" to work at Philadelphiaís Horizon House, a drug and alcohol rehabilitation facility. A story praising the success of "social therapy" at Horizon House that appeared in the East Side Instituteís newsletter explains that "With social therapy we donít try to Ďfix upí the individual. We donít take care of people, but demand that they participate in building the environment to get help." This is typical "social therapy" dogma. But, as the article goes on to profile patients at the facility, and chronicle their long and painful experiences with drug addiction. it becomes clear that these are individuals with serious physical dependencies and psychological problems who should be receiving more substantive care.

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A Record of Anti-Semitism

Despite its self-proclaimed multicultural vision and its avowed dedication to fighting racism and anti-Semitism, NAP has repeatedly bombarded its members with anti-Jewish and anti-Zionist rhetoric. Taking the podium in 1985 at NAPís regional convention in Harlem, Newman announced his views on the behavior of Jews after the Holocaust:

As a people we [Jews] responded to that genocide by selling our souls to the devil.... The contract with the Jewish people, with the Jewish leadership, has been: "Weíre going to let you live. Weíre going to let you survive. Weíre going to make sure it never happens to you again as long as you function as the stormtroopers of decadent capitalism against people of color the world over!Ö. Jewish people, my people, profoundly oppressed for thousands of years, capitulated ó not all Jews, but the Jews as a people.

Newmanís "deal with the devil" theory appears to have achieved the status of NAP gospel in the years since that initial speech. Variations on the theme have cropped up on numerous occasions. In 1989, Lenora Fulani told the National Alliance that Jews "had to sell their souls to acquire Israel and are required to do the dirtiest work of capitalismóto function as mass murderers of people of coloróin order to keep it."

In the summer of 1992, a play written by Newman, called Dead as a Jew, was presented at the partyís Castillo Cultural Center, a spacious loft in Manhattanís Greenwich Village. The Jewish weekly Forward explained that:

The play attempts to be many things...but ultimately it is a portrait of the Jew as a physically despicable, capitalistically exploitative creature who has literally sold his soul to the devil.... We are also told that Jews are to blame for the present-day Holocaust of minorities, and for their own Shoah as well.

In April of 1992, Newmanís East Side Institute for Short Term Psychotherapy sponsored a forum called "Can The Rift Be Repaired: A Dialogue on Black-Jewish Relations." The event featured two participants: black activist Al Sharpton, and Fred Newman, who were apparently serving as NAPís version of the representative black and Jew, respectively.

A press statement released prior to the forum by Newmanís Castillo Communications hinted at what was to follow. It catalogued then-recent incidents it believed had chilled relations between the black and Jewish communities. According to The New York Observer of April 27, 1992, although the list included the death of Crown Heights youngster Gavin Cato who was accidentally struck and killed by a car in the Lubavitch Grand Rebbeís motorcade, it made no mention of the murder of rabbinical student Yankel Rosenbaum, who was targeted by black youths rioting in the streets after Gavin Catoís death.

During the dialogue itself, according to the Amsterdam News, "Both Sharpton and Newman came to the conclusion that Black-Jewish relations could only be repaired when the Jewish community realized its fault." During the discussion, the paper reported, Newman referred to criticism he had received from some because he "encourages Jews to understand the dissenting world views of African diaspora scholars about Jewish involvement in slavery and Hollywood." Newman later announced that "The Jewish community has abandoned the African-American community. The Jewish community has walked out in the middle of the struggle. The Jewish community has lied and we will expose it."

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No Room for Zion

NAP also harbors an intense bias against Israel, which it makes no attempt to hide. In the pages of the National Alliance, Newman and Fulani regularly refer to themselves as "anti-Zionist," define Zionism as "Jewish corporate nationalism" and describe the U.S. government as being dominated by an all-powerful "Zionist lobby." In 1985, Newman railed against Jews and their support of Israel, claiming:

The Jew, the dirty Jew, once the ultimate victim of capitalismís soul, fascism, would become a victimizer on behalf of capitalism; a self-righteous dehumanizer and murderer of people of color; a racist bigot who in the language of Zionism changed the meaning of "Never Again" from "Never Again for anyone" to "Never Again for usó and let the devil take everyone else"...there was no room for Zion, no less community no less Communism, in Zionism.

In recent years, the Castillo Cultural Center has featured a dramatic rendering of this thesis in the form of a play by Newman, appropriately titled, No Room for Zion.

NAPís anti-Zionist posture has also appeared to function as a convenient disguise for the groupís animosity toward Jews in general. While their opposition to the ideology of Zionism is clear, it often seems that Newman and Fulani use the word "Zionists" in contexts that suggest the group they are actually referring to is "Jews." For example, in The National Alliance of December 3, 1992, Fulani referred to the David Dinkins administrationís handling of the August 1991 riots in Crown Heights, Brooklyn. She argued:

The right-wing Zionists are screaming that Dinkins "held back the police" in Crown Heightsóand thatís true.... Crown Heights was, in fact, the first clear exercise of power by the Cityís new coalition of black leadership. Thatís exactly what the Zionists donít like. They know as well as I do there was no anti-Semitic pogrom in Crown Heights. There was political muscle being exercised by the Black communityóthatís what they fear most and thatís why Crown Heights has become such an issue in the upcoming mayoral race.

The very circumstances of the Crown Heights riots, during which Jews were targeted and attacked simply for being Jewish, and not for a possible association with Israel, make it difficult to take Fulaniís reference to "right-wing Zionists" on anything but a non-literal, transparently anti-Semitic, level.

In February of 1994, in response to the outcry of condemnation for the racist, anti-Semitic, homophobic and anti-Catholic speech made at Kean College by then-Nation of Islam national spokesman Khalid Abdul Muhammad, NOI leader Louis Farrakhan criticized the manner in which his representative had spoken, but then, in an about-face, upheld "the truths" Muhammad had uttered. While much of the public noted Farrakhanís failure to truly denounce Muhammadís words, Newman offered an alternative spin on the affair, in the pages of The National Alliance:

Itís a double standard to call what he [Farrakhan] said "double-talk." It was perfectly sensible. It was another instance of reaching out. Yet within minutes of his having said it there was a knee-jerk reaction on the part of the Zionist spokespersons and the professional politicians.... Zionism has done a hell of a job. Itís been highly successful. I think thatís why the response to Farrakhan has the quality of a tantrum. The Zionists have acquired an enormous amount of influence.

Newmanís categorical support here for Louis Farrakhan, a man with an unrelenting record of anti-Semitism, speaks volumes on its own about Newmanís negative predisposition toward the Jewish community. But Newman spelled out his own views even more clearly, in a follow-up comment that made the identity of his somewhat nebulous target, "Zionist spokespersons," more explicit:

The Jewish leadership never went to him [Farrakhan]. Their response to him was disingenuous. They werenít responding to his overtures.... They wanted to demonize him. Nothing he could have said would have made a difference.

While at first he carefully obscured anti-Semitic sentiment behind a screen of anti-Zionism, Newman eventually revealed his own use of "double talk" by referring to the objects of his derision, "Zionist spokespersons." as "the Jewish leadership."

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Friendship With Farrakhan

Over the years, NAP has treated Farrakhan and the Nation of Islam to a steady stream of praise. By his own report, Newman "has outspokenly defended the Nation of Islam leader whenever he has come under attack from the ADL and other pillars of the Zionist political establishment." The relationship between the two groups goes as far back as 1985, when Fulani sat on the dais at a lecture delivered by the NOI leader in New York Cityís Madison Square Garden.

In the early 1990s, NAP began to publish and sell a book entitled Independent Black Leadership in America: Minister Louis Farrakhan, Dr. Lenora Fulani, Rev. Al Sharpton, proclaiming it to be "the book white America is afraid to read!" Fulani contributes columns to NOIís bi-weekly The Final Call with some frequency, and in December of 1993, she appeared at the Jacob Javits Center as a warm-up speaker for Farrakhan.

Last winter, under a banner headline in The National Alliance reading. "Jews must welcome Louis Farrakhan into our homes." Fred Newman described a private meeting in Harlem that had recently taken place between himself, Fulani and the Black Muslim minister. Newman told the paper that Farrakhan "is a spiritual. caring, loving man. Iíve never thought that any of his attacks (on the Zionists) were in any sense personal." Assuming for himself the role of "Jewish political leader," Newman characterized his talk with Farrakhan as a positive step toward bridging the gap between the black and Jewish communities. He then directed criticism toward the "entrenched, influential, privileged Jewish leadership" for its reluctance to make a similar move.

A follow-up meeting between the threesome took place in April of 1994 on the set of "Fulani," a weekly cable television program hosted by the NAP chair. The on-air discussion was promoted in advance by The National Alliance as a "two-part special edition" that featured Fulaniís "friend and political confidant Minister Louis Farrakhan," as well as "Dr. Fred Newman, Fulaniís closest friend and political mentor, and a Jewí." Issues of the paper that followed the programís broadcast date offered readers an opportunity to purchase a videotape of the program, which it considered "A Real Black-Jewish Dialogue."

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Other Alliances

NAP has also maintained relationships with less controversial public figures, including New York black activist Rev. Al Sharpton. The group has regularly afforded Sharpton the use of its facilities and resources for the promotion of his own causes. According to Newsday a considerable number of the demonstrators who turn out for protests staged by Sharpton are NAP members, and the party has also often helped him to plan these rallies.4 Their friendship has been aided by close working quarters: in 1992, Sharpton told New York Newsday that he rented office space from NAP at 250 West 57th Street. Every week for years, The National Alliance has promoted Sharptonís National Action Alliance in advertisements for the Harlem-based organization, and in 1992, Newmanís "All Star Talent Show," which sponsors talent shows in black communities around New York City, paid Sharpton $12,000 to book entertainers for its performances.

4 Newsday. April 6. 1992

On occasion, NAP has persuaded Sharpton to make appearances on behalf of the groupís candidates. Fulaniís 1988 presidential campaign paid Sharpton $1,000 for one such promotional speech. But, while Newmanís organization provides him with cash and publicity, Sharpton has not been afraid to distance himself publicly from NAP. "A lot of people overplay our relationship," Sharpton told New York Newsday in April 1992. "There is no formal relationship between us. I have nothing to do with the party."

Fulani has nevertheless continued to lavish praise upon Sharpton, and during the 1994 election, The National Alliance stated that Fulani, who was running for governor of New York State, and Sharpton, a candidate for the U.S. Senate, were "running in tandem." The paper described their candidacies as "the Fulani-Sharpton insurgency," and characterized the two as a "Ďthird forceí in New York City politics." because, the paper argued, "Their base, which includes the poorest of the Black community, stands in opposition to both the conservative Republican establishment...and the liberal Democratic establishment." The paperís claim may have been intended in the figurative sense, because shortly after its publication, Sharpton announced that he was running on the ticket of the Freedom Party, an independent party cobbled together by a collection of New York City black activists.

During the presidential election of 1992, without providing much explanation for its behavior. NAP offered unsolicited support to long-shot candidate Larry Agran, a former mayor of Irvine, California. Fulani initiated a drive to attain New York State ballot status for the little-known Agran, and petitioned Democratic candidates to permit Agran to participate in their televised debates. But a statement from Agran suggested that while he may have possessed credentials worthy of Fulaniís notice, he wasnít interested in her or her party. "I donít regard their support as significant in one way or another," Agran told the New York Daily News.

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When Opportunity Knocks...

These episodes are not unusual for the group. NAPís history is riddled with attempts to latch on to prominent figures, especially ones in the black community, with the intention of appearing on the cutting edge itself. The group has gained entry into existing political movements in an effort to steer its members toward exclusive loyalty to NAP, and it has also tried to co-opt successful organizations in the minority community by creating groups with identical platforms and similar-sounding names.

In 1984 and again in 1988, as Rev. Jesse Jackson ran for the Presidency, NAP tried to profit from the public support he and his movement were enjoying by creating the impression that it had a close working relationship with Jackson. The group created the Rainbow Alliance and the Rainbow Lobby, entities with names and agendas nearly identical toóand thereby, easily mistaken foró Jacksonís own Rainbow Coalition. To reinforce this confusion, NAP literature would rarely mention Jacksonís group by name, making oblique references instead to Jacksonís "Rainbow social vision," or the amorphous "Rainbow movement," in which the Rainbow Alliance and Rainbow Lobby were also depicted as significant participants. As Dennis Serrette, NAPís 1984 presidential candidate explained in 1987 after leaving the party: "Support of Jackson is a tactic. It was a tactic in Ď84 and it is now. Itís a tactical thing to advance their own organizational means. Itís opportunism."5

5 Creative Loafing. (an Atlanta-based alternative newspaper) August 8, 1987

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Hostile Takeovers

NAPís interest in acquiring new members and additional resources has frequently led the group to conveniently ignore its stated principles. In 1991, Philadelphia resident Linda Ragin ran on the NAP ticket for Philadelphia City Council-At-Large. She left the party shortly thereafter, and joined The Concerned Family and Friends of Mumia Abu-Jamal. Assuming that this organizationís fight to free Abu-Jamal, a black journalist on death row for the murder of a police officer, would be of interest to NAP, Ragin visited NAP hoping to enlist its support. She described her experience to the Philadelphia New Observer in its March 22, 1992, issue:

NAP had gotten a lot of support over the years from the community and I wanted to give something back. I felt this would have been the perfect issue for NAP to get involved in.... But when I went to them [NAP] they told me that in order for them to get involved in this issue the members of the Concerned Family and Friends would have to join NAP, become part of a Pennsylvania State committee and raise money for the party.

The lofty tone of much of NAPís literature and rhetoric thus deceptively draws in individuals with a mind toward serious reform and political activism. While some, like Ragin, eventually realize that the partyís stance is but a cover for its preoccupation with power and money, other members remain loyal to the cult.

An additional campaign to take over a pre-existing political movement was waged by NAP in California during the 1992 presidential election. On this particular occasion, according to the New York City weekly Village Voice, NAP "stole the nominations of the [California] Peace and Freedom Party from the people who usually run the Peace and Freedom Party." NAP accomplished this by sending local followers to join the California party, and once inside, encouraging Peace and

Freedom to nominate Lenora Fulani as its presidential candidate. But, the Village Voice explained, "the true Peace and Freedom Party members realized" shortly after Fulani was nominated "exactly what the New Alliance Party was, and therefore quickly managed to defeat Fulani." The partyís original choice, former Rainbow Coalition national director Ron Daniels, was then selected in Fulaniís stead.6

6 Confronted by the nomination of Ron Daniels. Fulani tried to save face at the time by calling for NAP to stand behind Daniels candidacy. In comments about Daniels made since the election, however, the group has not been nearly as gracious. In The National Alliance of May 5, 1994. Managing Editor Dab Friedman wrote that "Daniels ran for president as an independent in an attempt to divide Fulaniís support in the Black community.... Danielsí was not a serious campaign. He was on the ballot in nine states. He was in it to prevent the further growth of the New Alliance Party."

NAP has also made a misleading attempt to become involved with the Asian-American community. In one instance, in Californiaís East Bay, NAP members attempted to attract the areaís Asian-American population by putting out a publication, Breaking the Silence, apparently hoping that local residents would confuse it with an already-established Asian community newspaper called Break the Silence.7

7 New Statesman and Society. May 15. 1992

Most recently, NAP set its sights on the New York Independence Party (NYIP), a self-described centrist third party based in upstate New York. According to Laureen Oliver, NYIPís founding chair, in early 1994, as the party was first organizing itself, Lenora Fulani expressed an interest in becoming a party leader. NYIPís founders turned her down, however, citing a complete lack of ideological compatibility between their respective movements. Additionally, in a memo sent to fellow party members, NYIP leader Gordon Black warned against any involvement with Fulani and NAP. Black wrote that Fulaniís relationship with Louis Farrakhan made any relationship with her "the black equivalent of our embracing David Duke and then expecting that blacks would tolerate such an association."

In a letter to Fulani, Black further explained that "The price of cooperation with you is simply higher than we are willing to pay." But Fulani was not to be deterred. "She has been on a crusade since the day we started," Oliver recently complained of Fulani.

In the fall of 1994, NYIP ran Rochester millionaire Thomas Golisano in the New York gubernatorial election.8 Along his campaign trail, Fulani repeatedly turned up at Golisanoís public appearances with offers to speak on his behalf. Golisano appeared on the cover of the October 6, 1994, issue of The National Alliance, and, inside the paper, Fulani claimed that Golisano "asked for my help in going to the African American community." Her assertion is disputed, however, by NYIP officials.

8 During the election, the Independence Party called itself the Independence Fusion Party. It has since gone back to its original name.

Golisano polled 210,000 votes in the gubernatorial election, winning official New York State ballot status for his party. Shortly thereafter, The National Alliance praised Golisanoís performance. and created the impression that NAP members would now enjoy the benefits of his success. The paper claimed that Fulani was one of the Independence Partyís top leaders, and quoted Fulani as raring to go. "Now that we have ballot status," she told the paper, "we can build our registration and have a party which is the most democratic organization in the state and in the country." But according to Oliver, Fulani was never given any leadership role in the Independence Party.

In recent months, Fulani has continued to demand a leadership position within NYIP. Independence Party founders have repeatedly turned her down, noting that she has not volunteered to work for their movement, and more importantly, that they do not agree with her political views.

On June 13, 1995, in an apparent act of retaliation, Fulani and a group of supporters calling themselves the Committee for a Unified Independent Party announced that they had filed suit against the Independence Party, charging its leaders with disobeying a section of the 1965 Voting Rights Act. Their suit claimed that NYIPís refusals to install Fulani and her followers as party leaders was a racially motivated attack. "Gordon Black...and Thomas Golisano have purposely worked to exclude Black and Latino members from the New York City area. ..from effective participation in party decision-making," they argued. For their part, NYIP officials considered Fulaniís suit frivolous, and maintained that their reluctance to install Fulaniís supporters as NYIP leaders had nothing to do with race, but ideology.

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The Patriot Party: Latest NAP Target

Given NAPís pattern of attempts to penetrate legitimate political movements, it is conceivable that the groupís recent merger with the Patriot Party is a similar attempt at a coup. Over the past few years, as its profile has become more recognizable, NAP has found itself becoming increasingly unwelcome in the ranks of the political left, as well as in the minority community. It is not unlikely, therefore, that NAPís show of sympathy toward the white middle-class Perot supporters who largely make up the Patriot Party is actually a tactic designed by NAP to acquire for itself a fresh and far larger base of support. With its proven record of attempting to co-opt established organizations, and its demonstrated lack of genuine devotion to its professed vision, NAP has already shown that it is willing to go to great lengths to acquire the legitimacy and publicity offered by a group like the Patriot Party.

The third-party movement that eventually spawned the Patriot Party began with the formation of the national Independence Party in September of 1992 by political scientist Ted Lowi and pollster Gordon Black (also a founder of NYIP). Describing itself as centrist, the party claimed political reform and fiscal responsibility to be its focal points, and began to ally itself with state parties around the country cropping up in support of Ross Perot. In January of 1993. Nick Sabatine, a lawyer from Wind Gap, Pennsylvania, founded a similarly-minded state-based independent party, the Pennsylvania Patriot Party, and in the months that followed it was joined by the Patriot Party of Virginia and the Patriot Party of California.

At a November 1993 gathering in Kansas City. Missouri. representatives of these and other parties formed a collective called the Federation of Independent Parties, and named Sabatine its chair. Federation members agreed to work together toward creating an all-encompassing national political party, and scheduled an "Inaugural Convention" for April 1994. NAP attempted to attend this formative Kansas City meeting. but was barred from it after several participating groups objected to the group s presence.

Undaunted by the displays of rejection, NAP members across the country took steps to become involved in the Federationís then-upcoming Inaugural Convention, by offering assistance to parties that had been in Kansas City. NAPís input was accepted by the Virginia Patriot Party and the Patriot Party of Pennsylvania. Pennsylvania party leader Nick Sabatine was in fact so supportive that

he fended off the complaints of other groups as NAP arranged for many of its own members to become delegates to the convention.

NAPís influence upon the convention, held in Arlington, Virginia, in April 1994, was visible. Writing for The Nation of May 30, 1994, associate editor Micah Sifry warned, "It appears that Lowi and Blackís efforts to stitch together the remnants of the Perot movement have been hijacked by the cultlike New Alliance Party of Fred Newman and Lenora Fulani."

The Nation reported that at the convention, at which the national Patriot Party was formed, nearly half of the 110 delegates in attendance were members of NAP. "The whole process," said The Nation, "was obviously stage-managed, with the Fulani backers voting as an organized bloc. The other delegates, clearly impressed by the NAP-ersí skills and energy, pretty much let them stack the partyís executive committee with Fulani followers." Indeed, as noted earlier, eight of the partyís sixteen leadership positions were awarded to long-time NAP members, including those of party secretary and party treasurer.

Their sheer numbers also enabled the NAP delegates to make subtle but significant changes to existing party procedures. For instance, the delegates insisted it was "undemocratic" that national officers could only be elected by the partyís national committee. They decided to change party policy, so that officers would be nominated by the national committee and elected by all of the delegates. Though seemingly minor, this alteration now meant that a single interest group, like NAP, could influence the selection of national leaders without being heavily represented on the partyís national committee. In a more fundamental gain, NAP delegates also succeeded in getting the word "centrist" removed from the new partyís description.

Movement pioneer Ted Lowi expressed alarm at these developments in a memo to former Federation members. "You have expanded the party by incorporating racists from the New Alliance Party," he wrote in part. "A third party will always attract radicals, crazies and other kinds of extremists. Thatís in the nature of the beast. We had taken care to avoid this in our original organizational efforts. The Patriot Party has put the effort at risk."

Following the convention, NAPís rhetoric underwent a substantial transformation. Speaking to The National Alliance in its post-convention issue, Fulani appeared to divorce herself completely from the left, complaining that "The left abandoned democracy long ago. The left reeks of hypocrisy from top to bottom."

Then, characterizing their newly formed alliance with the Patriot Party as a case of simply "reaching out to the white middle class," Newman told the paper that:

As leftists, in the best sense of the word, we were always looking to bring ordinary Americansówhite, Black, Latino, Asian American, Native Americanótogether to expand democracy in this country.... When the radical white center came into political existence in 1992, we knew it was an historic turning point. As soon as there was a way to reach out, we reached out.

Despite this statement, however, NAPís involvement with the Patriot Party had actually caused fewer of these "ordinary Americans" to join. Of the 33 state parties slated to participate in the convention, ten decided instead to disassociate themselves from the Patriot Party, because of its strong affiliation with NAP.

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Unconcerned About Anti-Semitism

Those Perot loyalists who chose to remain with the Patriot Party and work with NAP did not do so for lack of opportunity to review the groupís record. The Nation reported that prior to the convention, non-NAP delegates were given copies of several articles that exposed the groupís practices, and yet, as Jim Rubens, a former Perot activist on the Federation of Independent Parties platform committee, explained, "There was considerable hostility to the issue even being brought up."

An interview in The Nation with Patriot Party chairman Nick Sabatine revealed that the party was similarly unconcerned with NAPís support of Louis Farrakhan. "I donít know Minister Farrakhan," Sabatine said. "I havenít had a chance to sit down with him at a table. I have had a chance to sit down with Lenora Fulani, and I know for a fact that she is not an anti-Semite." When the issue of anti-Semitism was brought up again later, Sabatine was quoted in The Nation as responding that "In our party, it is not important."

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A Financial Empire

Until recently, the New Alliance Party has been the hub of Newmanís operations, with a host of additional non-profit and for-profit businesses run by Newman or other party members circling about its periphery.

In 1981 Newman founded one ostensibly non-profit venture, the Community Literacy

Research Project, an organization that primarily funds two projects in the minority community: the All Star Talent Show Network, which stages outdoor talent shows in housing projects, and the Barbara Taylor School, a Harlem elementary school that bases its teaching methodology on the principles of "social therapy."

Fundraising for the Literacy Research Project is carried out by Newmanís therapy patients/workers. and is done so effectively that in 1989 it was able to put up $2 million for the purchase and renovation of a 9.000-square-foot loft in Manhattanís Greenwich Village. The space, dubbed the Castillo Cultural Center now houses a theater and an art gallery, and rents space to the Newman-owned East Side Institute for Short Term Psychotherapy, Castillo Communications (a public relations firm operated by two NAP members,) and Castillo International, a party-affiliated publishing house. In April of 1992, an article in Newsday stated that each of these three businesses had reported sales in the hundreds of thousands of dollars for the previous year.

Similarly, the partyís lobbying arm, the Rainbow Lobby, raised $1.5 million in 1991, ranking it, according to Newsday, as one of the largest lobbies in Washington, D.C. The organization also operates an office in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and conducts its telemarketing campaigns at NAP offices in New York.

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Your Tax Dollars at Work

Newmanís operations have been highly successful, posting huge profits year after year. But they are the fruits of careful, creative planning in a complex and often convoluted financial universe. A large portion of Newmanís cash stream can be traced to NAPís election campaigns.

In every election year since the early 1980s, NAP has put its members on the ballot for positions ranging from U.S. president and member of Congress to local school board member and state assemblyman. Its local candidates have on occasion fared relatively well at the polls: in New York Cityís 1989 Democratic primary, party member Rafael Mendez, running for City Council President, received about 25 percent of the vote cast, and running in New Yorkís Democratic primary against Governor Mario Cuomo in 1994, Fulani collected 21 percent of the total vote. But it is the strength of NAPís presidential campaigns that has proven more remarkable.

In 1988. after NAP members spent months raising funds and petitioning for ballot status. Lenora Fulani became the first black woman to be on the presidential ballot in all fifty states. And, in October of 1991, the Federal Election Commission (FEC) announced that Fulani was the first candidate in the 1992 presidential campaign to be declared eligible to receive Federal matching funds. By January of 1992. Fulani had already been awarded more than $600,000 in government money, a sum topped by only two others in the race: President George Bush and Iowa Democratic Senator Tom Harkin. But, as financial statements revealed, these Federal dollars were hardly a reflection of Fulaniís strength or popularity as a candidate. Instead, as the Forward explained on January 10, 1992, they showed "how a small group of activists has made a virtual industry of exploiting the Federal financing of presidential elections."

To qualify for Federal matching funds, a candidate must raise $5,000 in donations of no more than $250 each in at least 20 states. Armed with a band of volunteers committed to the notion that fund-raising is therapeutic. NAP probably did not consider the requirement particularly challenging. Indeed, an article in The Nation in the spring of 1992 demonstrated the extent to which social therapy has been invoked to extract campaign contributions. Standing before approximately 250 followers at a campaign rally in Brooklyn, New York, shortly after the 1992 New Hampshire primary. Fulani insisted that, "The more you give, -the more you grow. Take it out of your rent. It feels very, very good."

According to FEC regulations, once a candidate has become eligible for matching funds, all additional contributions to the campaign are similarly matched dollar-for-dollar by the Federal government. Records filed with the FEC by NAP indicate that as Fulaniís campaign manager. Newman directed a major portion of the campaignís matching funds into 12 companies run by Newman or other party members claiming that these businesses were being paid for services rendered to the campaign. FEC records also show that an unusually large number of subsequent contributions to the Fulani campaign were made by the campaign workers at these NAP-affiliated companies.9

9 Newsday. April 6. 1992

These donations, in turn, enabled the campaign to qualify for additional matching funds. By election day, Fulaniís campaign had raised a total of approximately $4.2 million, with $2 million of this money coming from matching funds. According to FEC documents, more than $750,000 in matching funds were paid to firms run by Newman or his associates.10

10 The City Sun. September 15-September 21. 1993

In September of 1993, former NAP member William Pleasant told The City Sun he believed Newman regarded Fulaniís 1992 campaign solely as a money-making venture. Pleasant claimed that he had become a pawn in Newmanís game, when during the campaign:

He [Newman] listed me as a campaign worker in the FEC documents, claiming that I was paid $450 for clerical work that I never did. He went on to write a check out and cashed that check at Amalgamated Bank by forging my signature. I never received a penny from the Fulani campaign, nor did I ever work on the Fulani campaign. That was one of the ways that he used the members of the IWP.

Two months later, Pleasant and three other former NAP members outlined Newmanís scheme in a five-page letter to the Manhattan district attorneyís office. Referring to Newmanís claim in FEC documents that matching funds had been used to pay campaign workers in NAP-affiliated businesses. Pleasant told the New York Daily News that "The amount of money that went into these organizations that was actually spent on the campaign was microscopic." Also interviewed in the Daily News, former member Kelly Gasinke confirmed Pleasantís allegation, and claimed that most of these companies "exist only on paper as bank accounts." For example, Gasinke explained, Castillo Communications was officially paid over $220,000 for campaign-related public relations work, yet it is a company consisting of three unsalaried employees, two phones and a fax machine. According to FEC spokesman Scott Moxley, quoted in Newsday, "As long as the expenditures are for actual services that are reasonable and customary." it is not illegal for campaign money to be paid to companies owned by close associates of the candidate.

Complaints by one former NAP member about Newmanís creative accounting practices recently fueled an FEC audit of the campaignís finances. The former member argued that he had not been paid for services to Fulaniís campaign, even though campaign finance records claimed the worker had been paid $450. The NAP defector also stated that Federal matching funds had been distributed to individuals and companies associated with Fulani in return for services that were never performed. On May 30, 1995, the FEC served 12 businesses connected to Newman with subpoenas for investigation. On August 3, the FEC issued a preliminary judgement against the Fulani campaign. charging it with mismanaging over $600,000 in matching funds. Specifically, the FEC found that $381,171 was paid to "unqualified vendors," $98,095 went to "unqualified individuals," and $133,298 was received "in excess of the candidate's entitlement."

Responding recently to the FECís charges, Fulani explained that campaign workers travelling across the country did not have the facilities to cash their pay checks, so the campaign cashed their checks and paid them for their services in cash. This payment procedure, Fulani argued, has left the campaign vulnerable to false accusations by disgruntled employees.

Fulani is currently attempting to convince the FEC to amend its decision; if she does not succeed. ceed. she may be forced to return the improperly used matching funds.

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Setting Principles Aside

Signs that NAPís election bids may have been little more than a money-making venture are also to be found in the disruptive nature of the partyís campaigns. During her drive to become New

York State governor in 1990, Lenora Fulani launched into lengthy tirades about her pivotal role as an independent candidate. Explaining that her run was devoted to giving disenfranchised segments of the electorate an alternative to the Democrats and Republicans, she warmly encouraged additional independents to join in the fray.

Yet when black activist Jitu Weusi of the All-African Unity Party actually petitioned for ballot status, Fulaniís apparent dedication to the cause of independent candidates seemingly evaporated. She challenged Weusiís petitions, and later complained to the Philadelphia New Observer on April 22, 1992, that "The democratic party was willing to let them [the All-African Unity Party] get on the ballot with too few signatures in order to undermine and take away votes from a serious Black-led, multi-racial party."

The opening of the electoral process was also one of Fulaniís key campaign issues when she ran for president in 1992. Nevertheless, during the New York State primary, Fulani thwarted her own alleged cause by taking steps to remove Paul Tsongas from the Democratic primary ballot, charging that the petitions he filed contained invalid signatures. Shortly before the primary, The New York Observer reported on March 2, 1992, Fulani met supporters at a weekly Harlem meeting, and assured them that "Mr. Tsongas is not going to be on the ballot here in New York. We are throwing off the front runner." Thus Fulani demonstrated her willingness to openly flout a principle that her very candidacy supposedly embodiedóa principle that she had urged so many others to strongly support." 11

11 NAPs challenge to Tsongas was dismissed on March 3. 1995, by the New York State Board of Elections. The New York Times editorial page called the decision "a rare reach for fairness."

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At Odds With the Black Community

This pattern of self-contradiction continued to play itself out in the most recent election. As noted earlier, after running in the Democratic primary for governor of New York in the fall of 1994, Fulani dropped out of the race and allied herself with Independence Fusion Party candidate Thomas Golisano. a conservative businessman described in The City Sun as "A political unknown who has not appealed to Blacks, has no record on Black issues and has not communicated any."

To some, Fulaniís attitude toward the political concerns of African-Americans had already been demonstrated during previous elections, by her repeated attempts to disrupt the campaigns of the legitimate black candidates she deemed threatening. The image of NAP as a "Black-led, multi-racial" organization had also been put to rest, as several blacks, fed up with the poor treatment they had received as party members, decided to jump ship and tell all. One such individual was Dennis Serrette, who served as NAPís presidential candidate in the 1984 election.

In May of 1987, as a witness in the lawsuit of NAP member Emily Carter against the Jackson, Mississippi, newspaper The Jackson Advocate, Serrette described in graphic detail his experiences as a party member. One of the primary reasons Serrette gave for leaving NAP was "its failure to carry out its pledge of making it an organization that was going to be led by black and Latino people." Serrette claimed that he had voiced this complaint to Fred Newman at a party meeting, and had outlined the type of black control he had in mind. "I stated to him [Newman].... It means making policy, it means running personnel...thatís black control to me. I donít understand it as just having a black face in a high place. Thatís nothing more than racism and nothing more than window dressing."

Additional testimony from Serrette makes it clear that he viewed his own role in the partyó as its presidential candidateóas being no more than "a black face in a high place." Speaking of NAP procedure during the 1984 campaign, Serrette stated that "It was clear that they werenít taking orders from me on this campaign, but they were taking orders from [Rainbow Lobby leader] Nancy Ross, who was taking orders from Fred Newman, and that I was a spectator."

Similarly, former member Marina Ortiz, now a reporter at listener-supported radio station WBAI-FM, told The City Sun in November of 1993 that she had joined NAP because "As a Latina, and as one who grew up in East Harlem and the South Bronx, they [NAP] claimed to represent and were building things that would help the African American and Latino communities. They are simply full of it." In reality, Ortiz contended, the internal leadership of NAP "is basically white, and forget about having any African Americans, Latinos or Asians."

In the past few years, as testimony of this sort has continued to surface from additional NAP defectors, the partyís attempts to build membership from within the black community have, not surprisingly, become increasingly difficult. It is to broaden its lagging base of support, critics charge, that Newman and Fulani have now chosen to dispense with the progressive, multicultural New Alliance Party label, and join the more mainstream, conservative Patriot Party.

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The More Things Change...

While Fred Newmanís 25-year career in the world of fringe politics has seen him involved in a multitude of disparate movementsóthe newest of which appears to be the Patriot Partyóit is important to note that his tactics have remained constant throughout. Newmanís social therapy centers have always been a primary source of finances and new membership, as have door-to-door fund-raising drives. And, whatever his political organization happened to be at a given moment, it generally attempted to gain legitimacy and prominence for itself by latching on to more successful groups.

By all appearances, Newmanís and Fulaniís involvement in the national Patriot Party will be no different. At the party convention in April 1994, NAP members already demonstrated their intention of steering the new partyís political course. In little over a year, members of the former NAP seem to have fully integrated themselves into the Patriot Party movement. Moreover, their overwhelming presence has, to some degree, changed the face and the message of the original party.

In January 1995. the party introduced Patriot News, a bi-monthly newsletter. Subscription requests were directed to the partyís Pennsylvania headquarters, managed by Nick Sabatine, but the publication itself appeared to be a project of New York-based former NAP members. Pat Garrison, the Newsís main editor, has been a long-time Fulani supporter, and Jacqueline Salit, the paperís other editor, is the former executive editor of The National Alliance. Aside from a front-page introductory piece signed by Sabatine. all of the articles in the first issue of the newsletter were written by former NAP members or associates.

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The Patriot Party Message

From the contents of the articles themselves, it is hard to measure the extent to which NAP operatives have influenced the Patriot Party platform. The partyís platform, as it is spelled out in

Patriot News, is a typical populist program, calling for "fiscal and political reformí "individual responsibility and accountability on the part of all Americans,í "the election of citizen legislators" and "the elimination of career politicians." It criticizes the current two-party political system for ignoring "popular support for term limits, initiative and referendum, recall, thoroughgoing campaign finance reform, and fair and equitable access to the ballot." Party literature does not present a full-fledged social and economic program, nor does it address specific social issues, such as health Gare, welfare or abortion.

The partyís reticence regarding numerous hot-button issues should not be surprising, however. As a movement in its fledgling stages, the Patriot Party may simply be trying to cast a wide net and attract as many disaffected Americans as it possibly can. Rather than risk losing supporters by issuing specific statements on all of the issues, party leaders appear to be trying to pitch an appealing, inclusive message. As it attains a more sizeable membership, the party may begin to narrow its focus.

In addition, like other third party movements, the Patriot Party was ostensibly created to address specific grievances its founders have with the countryís present political system. They criticize the two party system for failing to represent the interests of the majority, encourage term limits for politicians, and the reform of campaign financing. These issues are the partyís raison díetre, and it understandably centers its platform around them. These types of goals are also relentlessly championed by the Patriot News, to the exclusion of other issues.

Issues of the Patriot News have included a two-page section with brief state-by-state overviews of the activities the party conducts in chapters across the country. The groupís lack of a unified ideological visionóbeyond its populist-style platformóis evident. A newsletter entry about Patriot Party efforts in Alaska describes efforts being made by members there to arrange a speaking appearance by right-wing states rights activist Charles Duke, a Colorado State Senator. Meanwhile, party activists in Virginia write that they have formed a coalition with the leftist Green Party of Virginia. At this point in time, it seems, Patriot Party organizers are more interested in forging alliances and attracting members than they are in affixing themselves to a set point on the ideological map.

While NAP and other Newmanite groups have been notoriously cagey about principles, and have been known to recruit members regardless of ideology, it is far from certain that the Patriot Party is imitating NAP tactics in this instance. At any rate, there is no doubt that the flexibility Patriot founders have exhibited with regard to the affiliations and philosophies of their members has made it easy for NAP to fold itself into the party and begin to shape it from the inside.

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Reaching Out

Items in the Patriot News also indicate that the Patriot Party has been trying to recruit members from various chapters of United We Stand, America, the non-partisan citizens group formed by Ross Perot in 1992. Party activists have distributed Patriot literature among United We Stand members, and in several states, Patriot Party representatives have spoken at United We Stand-sponsored events.

They have met with some success. In September 1995, Perot announced that he had decided to form a national third party. But a majority of United We Stand members have been calling for the

creation of such a party since 1993. Some, not content to wait around for Perot to make his move, joined up with the Patriot Party instead. In the August 1995 issue of Patriot News, United We Stand adherent Michael Poynter stated that "I am no longer active in UWSA. Iím still a member, and still support it, but my energies are now invested in the Patriot Party of America, a true grassroots political movement made up of dissatisfied citizens...across all political spectrums." Poynter is currently on the Washington Patriot Partyís Steering Committee. The August issue also contains a short piece written by a former United We Stand member, David Lee Burns, who is now active in the Texas Patriot Party. Burns praises the Patriot platform for its allegiance to United We Standís mission, but also recognizes the differences between the memberships of the two organizations: "The [Patriot] Party," he writes, "is a product of coalition building and the coming together of centrists and alternative political leadership."

Across the country, Patriot leaders have been drumming up enthusiasm in the local media for their movement, and have routinely showcased Lenora Fulani as their spokesperson. In Iowa, Fulani appeared on a popular radio talk show, while in North Carolina party activists placed three op-ed articles authored by Fulani in a local black paper. In one of these pieces, Fulani argued that there are no significant differences between the Democratic and Republican parties, and recommended "a thoroughgoing restructuring of American democracy" via the independent route.

In Seattle, party state chair Harriet Hoffman, also a former NAP activist, has appeared on four local radio programs. including the cityís most popular early morning commute show. In March, Texas Patriot Party state coordinator Linda Curtis contributed an op-ed piece to the Dallas Morning News. She staunchly advocated passage by the state legislature of an initiative and referendum amendment, and criticized the billís original sponsors for agreeing to a compromise measure. "It is clear." she wrote, that the Republicans and Democrats "are united in their political skullduggery to kill democracy in Texas."

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Patriot Party Convenes

In May 1995. the Patriot Party held its second national convention in Bloomington. Minnesota. Delegates were addressed by former Minnesota Democrat Tim Penny, a term limits advocate who in 1994 voluntarily limited his own Congressional stint by retiring after 10 years in office. In Washington. Penny clashed with many of his Democratic colleagues as he strongly supported deficit-reduction, small government and campaign finance reform. These positions have made Penny a welcome figure. however, in the centrist third-party movement.

Penny was invited to the convention by Patriot Party leader Nick Sabatine, whose politicallyí moderate views appear to coincide with those of the former Minnesota Congressman. But as events at the convention made clear, not all Patriot Party members are of precisely the same mind. One Patriot. Alaska delegate Ralph Winterrowd, arranged for Colorado state senator and militia movement defender Charles Duke to speak at the convention. A large number of delegates were visibly impressed with Dukeís talk on state sovereignty and the right to bear arms; Winterrowd considered the state senator a viable Patriot Party candidate for the 1996 Presidential elections. Sabatine and other party leaders were less enthusiastic, however.

Both Fulani and Newman also spoke to spirited applause. Disposing of the socialist agenda she has long promoted, Fulani sharply criticized welfare recipients, especially blacks. Newman similarly trumpeted a conservative agenda, and appeared to fit in comfortably.

Also in Minnesota, delegates adopted an official Patriot Party Platform proposing that Congress pass a term limits amendment, an amendment to eliminate the electoral college, and ballot access legislation. It also calls upon Congress to require the Federal government to begin balancing the annual fiscal budget in the year 2000, and to simplify Federal income tax codes, with a single tax rate of 20 percent.

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Additional Concerns

Meanwhile. Fred Newmanís therapy centers and additional money-making outfitsówhich have always been closely linked with his political activitiesóshow no signs of shutting their doors. Time will tell how these profitable enterprises fit in to Newmanís new strategy.

Steps have also been taken by NAP to reshape its old haunts in the independent party mold. The partyís West 72nd Street, New York, office space now houses the "national, non-partisan"

Committee for a Unified Independent Party, with Fulani acting as its chair. In early June, the Committee co-sponsored a Washington, DC, conference entitled "Third Parties Ď96: Building the New Mainstream. The gathering was attended by representatives from 40 fledgling political parties of the right, left and the center, including members of the Patriot Partyís California and Virginia delegations.

Bruce Weiner. chairman of the national Patriot Partyís Public Relations Committee. and a Virginia Patriot Party activist, announced at the meeting that a "coalition" had recently been formed between the Patriots and the pro-environment, anti-war Green Party of Virginia. The parties have agreed to jointly run candidates in state electionsóan inexplicable move of camaraderie between two groups with strikingly dissimilar political goals.

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Looking Ahead

During the 1992 presidential election, a segment of alienated middle-class voters who. polls showed, felt abandoned and ignored by Americaís two-party system. found hope for change in independent candidate Ross Perot. Millions threw their support his way; on election day he received a remarkable 19 percent of the popular vote. Perotís success infused Americaís fledgling third-party movement with vigor and optimism. Ted Lowi and Gordon Black were among those who hoped to continue where Perot left off by reaching out to the broad base of Americans he inspired. But the national Patriot Party, formed as a result of their efforts, has now been joined by former members of the New Alliance Party, a group thatóas this report has illustratedóunder various guises has managed to insinuate itself into a broad range of political movements. Joining the mainstream Perot-based independence movement, however, is by far the most ambitious of NAPís endeavors.

On a limited scale. NAP has already demonstrated its propensity for locating and seizing power. The party has a talent for zeroing in on the rhetoric people want to hear, and for exercising a remarkable degree of control over members. As its chair, Lenora Fulani has been welcomed on mainstream television and radio talk shows around the country, and has impressed audiences with her determined and energetic demeanor. The groupís unorthodox fund-raising tactics have exploited countless Americans. Now that NAP has successfully established itself on the larger playing field of the Patriot Party, it remains to be seen how its strategy plays itself out. Will it succeed in dominating the Patriot Party, and does it have even larger targets in mind, such as the Perot movement?

In November 1994, a New York Times CBS News poll showed that 57 percent of Americans believe the country needs a third major political party. NAP is well-situated to reap the benefits of this finding. That such a power-hungry group, with its record of manipulating the political system and maligning the Jewish community, could feed off this swell of interest, is troubling. The latest activities of the former NAP plainly merit the attention of the news media and the American public.

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This report was originally issued in November 1995.

© 2001 Anti-Defamation League