No really, we stand for something.

That was the message from Independence Party Chairman Frank MacKay, who insisted in a letter to elected officials that the minor party does indeed have a set of beliefs.

In making his case, MacKay sent along the party’s 2014 platform and legislative agenda which includes support for the Dream Act, a delay in Common Core implementation and support for raising the age of criminal prosecution to 18.

The party, interestingly enough, also backs an effort that would clarify voter registration by making the option to not enroll in a political party more prominent on the form. Often voters have registered in the Independence Party believing they have registered as “independents” but are in fact registered “blanks.”

“Our critics have stated that the Independence Party lacks a “philosophical core.” This could not be further from the truth,” MacKay wrote in the letter.

He added that while the party stays away from divisive social issues, it seeks to give elected officials a chance to “use common sense in governing.”

“The core premise of the Independence Party is that elected officials should be free to legislate and use common sense in governing, and shouldn’t be tied to a highly partisan social platform that fails to represent their electorate,” MacKay wrote. “They should be free to make policy and legislative decisions based on sound reasoning and input from their constituents, not heavy-handed political party bosses or special interest groups.”

The party, founded by then-Rochester based billionaire Tom Golisano during a gubernatorial run, has come under fire for being little more than patronage operation for party leaders.

Nassau County Democratic Chairman Jay Jacobs, a former statewide party chairman, urged Gov. Andrew Cuomo not to take the party’s ballot line this fall. Republican gubernatorial candidate Rob Astorino, who is in a dispute with the county chairman, has sworn off accepting the ballot line.

The day he was nominated by state Democrats, Cuomo told reporters in Cooperstown he would consider the Independence Party’s endorsement “down the road” but had already signed documentation accepting the ballot line.

Cuomo later explained he had signed the paperwork in advance assuming he wouldn’t be available to do so later.

Letter From Chair Frank MacKay by Nick Reisman

Independence Party Legislative_Agenda 2014 by Nick Reisman