The Hatewatch blog is managed by the staff of the Intelligence Project of the Southern Poverty Law Center, an Alabama-based civil rights organization.

Longtime Racist Joins Constitution Party’s Executive Committee

By Hatewatch Staff on September 16, 2013 - 4:39 pm, Posted in Anti-Abortion, Anti-Black, Anti-Immigrant, Anti-Semitic, Antigovernment

The Constitution Party, a small third party that has been around in one form or another since 1992, says its goal is “to limit the federal government to its delegated, enumerated, Constitutional functions.” As a practical matter, that has meant that it opposes abortion and most immigration, seeks to drastically reduce government spending and end the income tax, and works toward a noninterventionist foreign policy that requires dropping out of international organizations and treaties.

What it has not done, despite serious flirtations with radical anti-abortionists and antigovernment militias, is get into open racism. Not until now, anyway.

Enter Peter Gemma.

Virtually unnoticed, Gemma, who lives in Florida, has recently joined the governing national executive committee of the Constitution Party as its eighth living member (party founder Howard Phillips, who died earlier this year, is also listed). Although Gemma is described by the party website as “a veteran political and fundraising consultant” who was a staffer on three presidential campaigns, he is in fact a white nationalist with deep ties to a whole array of racist hate groups.

For years, he was the head of design, marketing and advertising for the racist tabloid of the Council of Conservative Citizens (CCC) — a group that has complained that non-white immigration was turning the U.S. population into a “slimy brown mass of glop” and described black people as a “retrograde species of humanity.” He also was the media coordinator for the CCC’s Capital Region for several years.

He is part of the American Holocaust denial movement, reviewing a book by British denier David Irving for the racist Occidental Quarterly journal, organizing a 2005 speaking event for Irving, and giving a speech at the denialist Institute for Historical Review, according to the Institute for Research on Education & Human Rights.

In 2000, Gemma appeared with David Duke and Don Black, both former leaders of the Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, at an event meant to raise money for the fascist, whites-only British National Party, according to the same report.

He has been media director at the National Policy Institute, a hate group that is staffed by leading racists and anti-Semites and whose founder worries that “the white race may go from master of the universe to an anthropological curiosity.” He still writes for The Social Contract, a racist anti-immigration journal. He has contributed to VDARE, a racist website named after Virginia Dare, said to be the first English child born in the New World. He is a member of Florida’s ResistNet Tea Party, where two veteran anti-Semitic activists — White Revolution founder Billy Roper and Internet radio host Clay Douglas — also found a home.

Gemma has also appeared as a guest on James Edwards’ racist, Memphis-based radio program, “The Political Cesspool,” later reviewing Edwards’ book for a white nationalist blog called Middle American News. And he has been on the other side of many interviews, speaking to such heroes of the radical right as nativist Sheriff Paul Babeu of Pinal County, Ariz., and former congressman Virgil Goode, who was the Constitution Party’s nominee for president of the United States in 2012.

Gemma’s influence on the Constitution Party has been, thus far, hard to gauge. The group’s mission statement and its website look unchanged. But it’s hard not to wonder, when an already radical group brings a longtime racist and anti-Semite like Peter Gemma into a key leadership position, just what the future can hold.

  • Reynardine

    Aron, Georgia, there, has been biting into far too many peach pits. The prussic acid is Hell on the brain.

  • Aron

    Georgia, there’s a liberal mantra? I’ve been a liberal for a long time, and the only political mantra I’ve ever heard comes from the far right.

    Care to elaborate on your craziness?

  • Georgia Citizen

    There are a lot of people who just aren’t buying into thr liberal mantra. Ha! Ha! Hee! Hee!

  • aadila

    Why don’t you name her Gaia, Rey?

  • Reynardine

    Dragon, I’ve noticed that myself. I hate to think of the organisms it’s hosting.

  • Reynardine

    Dammit, my twin-trunked flowering pear is named Gemma, and now I’ll have to rename her.

  • Critical Dragon1177

    By the way, “The Political Cesspool,” sounds like the perfect name for a far right racist, antisemitic, homophobic radio program like the one hosted by James Edwards. Its almost too perfect.

  • Critical Dragon1177

    I’ve heard of the “Constitution Party” before. They never appealed to me. I’ve always seen them as pretty extreme, now even more so. I don’t want this guy anywhere near the white house. Luckily, that’s not likely to happen.

  • Kiwiwriter

    Well, the only good news about this move is that with a guy like Gemma at the top, their racism and anti-Semitism will be more obvious, and they will offend adherents, losing them in favor of the jackbooted and pedophilic crowd that makes up the neo-Nazi movements.

    Which in turn will diminish the Constitution Party further.

    I’ve read their positions in earlier SPLC Intelligence Reports. I’m amused by some of them…I’d like to see their logistics for actually removing the United Nations from New York and shutting down all those federal agencies…the contractors alone would scream bloody murder at such suggestions. Then the contractors, having lost the contracts, would have to lay off their workers…and bang goes the Constitution Party’s glorious hopes of a strong American economy…

  • concernedcitizen

    Let us all wish Gemma into the corn field.

  • aadila

    The Constitution says nothing about abortion, nor immigration.

  • Yodz

    That’s “snarky” not “sparky.” Damn you auto-correct!

  • Yodz

    Concernedcitizen : are you the same “concernedcitizen” who posts comments on the ABA daily news blog? If not, there’s someone else out there using that same name, and they write in a similar fashion as you. Just curious. I’m Yodz there as well.

    I also want to note to the rest of the usual suspects: I have been lurker on this site for years, but don’t comment often. Still, I feel like I know most of you because of your posts. It seems that most of you are thoughtful, well-read, and well-spoken…with a few exceptions (i.e. those who hijack names, are sparky when snark is not called for, are trolls, etc.). Regardless, it’s God that there are people out there who, like me, pay attention and will not accept the radical right or racism. Keep fighting the good fight.