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Independence Party forms

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The Independence Party has overtaken the Conservative Party in garnering the 3rd highest number of votes – after Democrats and Republicans – of any party during recent New York State-wide elections, and now for the first time, the party has a fully constituted county committee in the Bronx.

The Independence Party has long been a refuge for those who believe that the two party system – or in some cases a one party system with few factions – is wrong for the democratic process.

For the past nine years, the Independence Party – which now has county committees in every borough of the City – holds the Anti-Corruption Awards presentation promoting good government, this year honoring two Bronx county committee members and organizers.

“For the first time in the history of the awards, which promote good government, we have a county committee in the Bronx,” said Bronx County Independence Party chairman Keith McHenry. “Our goal is to fight partisanship.”

The awards ceremony, which was held on Tuesday, December 23, honored Bronx-native Michelle Pepe, who worked on Operation Local Control, an 8-month campaign to build county committees in all five boroughs. Pepe is a student at Iona College majoring in accounting.

Also receiving an award was Nicolas Johnson, who was an integral part of forming the first Bronx county committee of the Independence Party.

“Nicolas Johnson has generously spent hundreds and hundreds of hours driving to Independence Party members’ homes all over the borough to collect their signatures and proxies,” McHenry said at the awards presentation. “In a nutshell, there wouldn’t be a Bronx County Committee without him.”

Senator-elect Pedro Espada also lent his support to the Independence Party Anti-Corruption awards ceremony, which was attended by over 200 individuals and raised $45,000 for the party.

McHenry distilled the political beliefs of the Independence Party in a recent interview.

“I think that partisanship by its very nature creates divisions that people find it difficult to overcome when we have to address an issue,” McHenry said. “Sometimes party loyalty supersedes knowledge of the issues for voters. Some people don’t realize that they can split their ticket – they have been trained to go into the voting both an vote a particular line. In the wake of this historic presidential election – at this particular moment – I am not even sure what it means to be a D[emocrat], R[epublican], or I[ndependent].”

For more information on the Bronx Independence County Committee and party, please call (646) 673 – 5834.

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