Born in New York City, Alan Keyes grew up in a military family and spent his childhood at
Army bases in Italy and the United States. Keyes initially attended Cornell University where
he became a disciple of Allan Bloom, author of "The Closing of the American Mind." But after
speaking out against a campus protest by a black student group, he began receiving threats and soon
transferred to Harvard. Keyes went on to earn a PhD in government policy and joined the U.S. State
Department in 1978.
A fiery orator, Keyes delivers his message of "moral populism" in the style of a revivalist preacher.
Richard Kennedy, a New Hampshire State Representative, once remarked that Keyes "makes Jesse Jackson
sound like he stutters." It was his rhetorical prowess that caught the attention of former U.N.
ambassador Jeane Kirkpatrick who referred to Keyes as "one of the most dramatically articulate
people I've ever known in my life." Kirkpatrick became a mentor to Keyes and his career within
the State Department soon took off.
Serving under President Ronald Reagan, Keyes defended the administration's policy against
imposing economic sanctions on South Africa, a position that brought frequent criticism from
black leaders. After a dispute over the allocation of U.N. funding, he abruptly resigned from
the State Department in 1987.
The following year, Keyes turned his attention to national politics and ran for the U.S. Senate
in his home state of Maryland against Democrat incumbent Paul Sarbanes. He lost the election,
receiving only 38 percent of the vote. Keyes made another run for the seat in 1992, this time
against Democrat incumbent Barbara Mikulski. He lost again, receiving only 29 percent of the vote.
After the election, it was revealed that Keyes had paid himself a salary of $8,500 per month from
the campaign fund, a controversy that brought criticism from supporters.
Falling back on his oratorical skills, Keyes launched a conservative radio talk show
program, "America's Wake-Up Call: The Alan Keyes Show" on WCBM Radio in Baltimore. In the vein
of Rush Limbaugh, Keyes used the show to air his views on every topic from unwed mothers and
gun control to U.S. foreign policy in the Balkans.
A devout Catholic, Keyes decries the separation of church and state, calling it a "misinterpretation
of the Constitution." In particular, he rails against abortion and blames many of the ills plaguing
American society on the prevalence of the procedure. "As long as courts sanction murder in the womb,
they will be filled with the consequences of violence in our streets, schools, workplaces, and homes,"
In 1995, Keyes became the first black Republican presidential candidate in the 20th century.
Using his radio show to drum up grassroots support, he captured the nationwide attention of the
Christian right. Running on a staunchly anti-abortion platform, his campaign focused on the
corruption of moral leadership in the United States.
Keyes was especially critical of Republican leadership during the Monica Lewinsky scandal. He
argued that the GOP had abandoned its moral principles and "utterly failed to inform the opinion of
the American people in this time of crisis."
In 1999, Keyes launched another exploratory committee for a presidential run but has not yet
officially declared his candidacy.
||Alan Lee Keyes
||Announced exploratory committee June 17, 1999 via news release and officially
entered the race September 21, 1999 in Bedford, New Hampshire.
|Age on Inauguration Day 2001
||August 7, 1950 in New York, New York.
||Ph.D. in government, (1979), Harvard
University; B.A.in government, Harvard University (1972)
Married to Jocelyn Keyes; have three children -- Francis, Maya, and Andrew
U.S. State Department Foreign Service Officer (1978). U.S. State Department Consular Officer, Bombay, India (1979-1980).
U.S. State Department Desk Officer, Zimbabwe (1980-1981). U.S. State Department Policy Planning
U.S. Ambassador, U.N. Economic & Social Council (1983-1985)
Assistant Secretary of State for International
Organization Affairs (1985-88). Republican nominee for U.S.
senator in Maryland, (1988 and 1992). President, Citizens Against Government Waste (1989-91).
Public speaker, lecturer (1990-) . Interim president, Alabama A&M University (1991). Host of
nationally syndicated "America's Wake-Up Call" show, WCBM Radio, Owings Mills, Maryland.
Candidate for president of the United States (1995-96). Author: Masters of the Dream:
The Strength and Betrayal of Black America (1995); Our Character, Our Future: Reclaiming
America's Moral Destiny (1996).
Candidate for Republican presidential nomination (1996).
||Talk show host, "The Alan Keyes Show:
America's Wake-up Call" (1994-present); Resident Scholar at American Enterprise Institute
(1987-1989); Interim president of Alabama A&M University (1987-88)
5025 N. Central, Suite 408
Phoenix, AZ 85012
Web site: N/A
||Keyes is against affirmative action on the
grounds that it is preferential treatment and contradicts the principle that all humans are created equal.
We cannot cure injustice with another injustice, says Keyes. He argues that affirmative action
programs are patronizing to those they benefit and only serve to divide the country by creating
resentment against minorities.
|| Keyes argues that homosexuality represents
an assault on the traditional family. He claims that unlike race, which is a condition, homosexuality
is a behavior well within an individual's control. Keyes opposes all legislation that would ban
discrimination based on sexual orientation.
||Keyes advocates abolishing the income tax. He once called it
the slave tax on the grounds that it creates a nation of children whose will and resources
are subject to the control of 'Big Daddy' government. As an alternative, Keyes says the federal
government should be funded through tariffs, duties and sales taxes. Instead of being taxed
before we decide how to spend our money, we will be taxed only after we decide what to do with it.
In addition, he calls for the dissolution of the Internal Revenue Service.
||Keyes staunchly opposes the 1973 Roe v.
Wade Supreme Court decision. He specifically refutes the notion of viability, arguing
instead that the Declaration of Independence states that all humans are created equal and,
therefore, fetuses and embryos should be granted the same rights as other children, regardless
of whether or not they are viable outside the womb. Keyes says abortion is permissible only as an
unintended consequence of efforts to save the mother's physical life.
||Keyes is a strong supporter of the 2nd Amendment, which he says
was not put into the Constitution by the founders merely to allow us to intimidate burglars
or hunt rabbits to our hearts' content. Keyes argues that the right to keep and bear arms should
not only remain legal, but should be a fundamental duty of all Americans in order to resist tyranny.
||Keyes decries the separation of church and state.
He states that the 1st Amendment does not forbid religious influence on politics or society, only
government sponsored coercion of religious conscience. Keyes believes religion should be
institutionalized at all levels of American society, including schools.
||Despite his decade of service in the State Department,
including over two years as U.S. representative to the United Nations Economic and Social Council (UNESCO),
Keyes is an outspoken critic of the U.N. It has from its flawed founding been a source of
pernicious and dangerously naÔve globalist dreams, says Keyes. He warns that the U.N. could easily become
a supra-national entity that undermines our sovereignty and that the United States should
withdraw from the organization if necessary to protect American principles and interests.
|Personal Drug Use
||Keyes spokeswoman Becky Finger said the candidate has not used illegal drugs.
He canít control what questions are asked of Governor Bush, but personally he does not think
it is an appropriate question when there are so many important issues facing the nation, she said.
||According to Keyes, American society must return
to the fundamental principles put forth in the Declaration of Independence, and in particular,
the notion that God is the ultimate source of law and authority. Keyes argues that immorality has
corrupted the nation and has led to the abandonment of respect for law and individual responsibility.
For Keyes, a return to a strong belief in God is the only panacea to what he views as the current moral crisis.
The reverence for God is not just a matter of religious faith. It is the foundation of
justice and citizenship in our Republic, says Keyes.
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