Archive for January, 2009

Progressive Dane Endorses Todd Price for WI State Education Post

Progressive Dane, an Independent Political Party in Madison, Wisconsin (Dane County) has endorsed Todd Price for Wisconsin Superintendent of Public Instruction. There are five candidates in the state wide race, with a Feb. 17 primary and April 7 general election. The race is non-partisan.

“We’re pleased to be endorsed by Progressive Dane, a group of concerned and informed activists who have been instrumental in shaping policy in Dane County,” said Price.

Todd Price today issued a reaction to Governor Jim Doyle’s State of the State Address, calling for “Educational Priority in the State Budget”:

Todd Price, the progressive candidate for Wisconsin State Superintendent of Public Instruction, shares Governor Jim Doyle’s commitment to keeping Wisconsin’s schools strong and expressed disappointment that instead of the bold action our schools need and our children deserve, Wednesday’s State of the State speech seemed to promise a continued erosion of education.

“Investment in public education is the key to present and future health and prosperity,” said Price. “Good schools attract business and keep young families in our communities; they provide the opportunities our children’s need for full and successful lives.”
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Green Party Forum on DC Statehood Feb 5: “Now Is The Time!”

WASHINGTON, DC — The DC Statehood Green Party is sponsoring a forum, with a panel and open discussion, on the growing demand for statehood for the District of Columbia on Thursday, February 5.

The forum, titled “DC Statehood, Now Is The Time!”, begins at 7:00 pm and will take place at the University of the District of Columbia (UDC) School of Law, 4200 Connecticut Avenue NW, in Building 39, Room 201..

The forum will feature an array of guest speakers. The following have confirmed:
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IL Special Election: Greens Excluded From Forum

Green Party candidate Alan Augustson has been raising a stink about the Independent Voters of Illinois candidate forum on February 1 for the special election to fill Rahm Emanuel’s 5th District seat in Congress. Only Democrats are invited.

An Augustson media release states:

Augustson has vowed to attend, anyway — “not to disrupt the proceedings, but as an observer,” according to the candidate, who has filed to contend again for this office as a Green.

“I too have a number of questions that I’d like to ask the candidates,” Augustson said, “and I’ve submitted those questions through the appropriate channels. I’m absolutely itching to see how they will answer, or whether the questions will even be asked.”

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Obama’s Choice: Single-Payer Health Care or Insurance Industry Profits

From the Green Party:

Obama’s choice: support health care for all Americans or support the insurance industry, say Greens

President Obama can either work to enact health care for all Americans or he can support insurance and HMO industry profits, say Greens

• Mandates and other market-based plans will not solve the health care crisis; Single-Payer (Medicare For All) makes health care a right for all Americans

• Obama’s plan for national computerization of medical records can only guarantee patients’ privacy and security under Single-Payer

• Green Party Speakers Bureau list of party activists available to speak on health care:

WASHINGTON, DC — President Obama has a choice — he can either work for universal health care or he can satisfy the demands of insurance industry lobbies for continued private profit, said Green Party leaders today.
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Ban New Coal & Nuclear Plants Now

Despite the desperate warnings of global climate disaster plans continue to build new coal and nuclear power plants. This must stop.

Green Change among others is leading a Call to Immediate Action to demand the new Administration ban the establishment of new coal plants and nuclear power plants. Please go and see what you can do to help.

Stop new coal and nuclear plants now

The global climate crisis is the defining challenge of our generation.

We’ve got to halt all new coal and nuclear plants in the United States.
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IL Green Party Primary: Q&A With Alan Auguston

Five candidates are seeking the Illinois Green Party nomination to run in the special election to replace Rahm Emanuel in the US House in District 5. There will be a primary on March 3rd for the Green Party, the Democrats and the Republicans. The winners of the three primaries will face off in an April 7 Special Election.

We’ve asked the five candidates on the Green Party primary ballot to tell us a little bit about who they are, what they are running for, and why you should support them. We will post the replies from each as we get them.

Here is Alan Augustson:

Green Party Watch:
Tell us a little bit about who you are.

Alan Augustson: I’ve been a firefighter, a radio announcer, a computer scientist and a United States Marine. My wife and I came to Chicago in 2000 so I could finish my education at the University of Chicago. My goal was the same then as it is now: to do the greatest possible good.

Since then I’ve worked in social science research, policy analysis, public-sector management consulting, and healthcare advocacy. Probably my best work was done in Washington, on-contract to FEMA during the Katrina Catastrophe. Although none of my recommendations were listened to by the Cabinet, at least someone in the hierarchy was pushing for the rights and security of the victims of that tragedy.

GPW: What made you decide to jump into this race? What are the top 2 or 3 issues that you want to bring to the table?

AA: I felt compelled to enter the 2008 race against Rahm Emanuel because, at the time, he was unopposed. No Democratic opposition was surfacing, and not even any Greens were taking him on. This was unacceptable, given his atrocious voting record. Rahm didn’t know and didn’t care about the people of his district — he was too busy grooming himself for the next level.

My top three issues stem from a need to ensure the survival of humankind, as global warming advances and resources continue to deplete. If we want Chicagoland to remain a thriving community, there are three things we must accomplish to start with: we need better, faster and more extensive mass transit. We need real sustainable energy — massive windfarms and solar collectors, plus proper incentives for single-family homeowners to install these on their own homes. And we absolutely have to have universal healthcare. More employers are dumping their coverage every day. If we don’t guarantee healthcare for all, then the entire health sector — the largest non-government employment sector in Illinois — will go down the tubes.

GPW: What differentiates the “Green Party candidate” from the Republicans or Democrats? Why the Green Party?
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McKinney Calls on Obama to Spare Leonard Peltier

2008 Green Party Presidential candidate Cynthia McKinney is calling for President Obama to pardon Leonard Peltier. From a note on Facebook:

President Obama, Let Peltier Live!

Today, I sent this message to the President:

“Mr. President, Justice delayed is justice denied. Leonard Peltier’s family report that he has been brutally beaten while in custody. Peltier should be released. He has become a global symbol of injustice and prison abuse. Imprisoned in the late 1970s, Peltier has never been given a fair trial. Yet he has been a model prisoner. In April he wrote: “Given the choice of lying down to die or standing up to live, we chose to live.” Let Peltier live. Please free Leonard Peltier now.”
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Nichols: Capital ‘G’ Green Party Mayor for Racine Possible

John Nichols writing for the Capital Times plugs Pete Karas’ “Capital G” Green campaign for Mayor of Racine, noting that Karas has a very good shot to win:

Former Racine Mayor Gary Becker was an active Democrat, and Racine has a history of electing Democrats (often with labor ties) to the top job in this city of 81,000.

But Racine has been traumatized by Becker’s hasty resignation, after he was charged with an ugly assortment of child enticement and child pornography charges, and the city might just break the political mold when it holds a special election to fill the mayor’s job this spring.

Pete KarasFormer Racine Alderman Pete Karas, a Green with a capital “G,” is likely to be a serious contender for the mayor’s job.

Karas, who responded to a “Draft Pete” campaign by officially filing paperwork to run for mayor, is one of Wisconsin’s most energetic and effective Green Party activists. He’s also a smart, engaged local political figure who was repeatedly elected to the City Council in competitive races.

Karas notes, correctly, that “it’s no secret my time on the council was spent clashing with Becker.”

But, he adds, “I want to run not only to bring some integrity back to city government, but because we need to focus on jobs, on the city’s economic health.”

To that end, Karas has been an advocate for setting up a municipally owned electric utility in Racine — as a means of lowering energy costs. “These generally save the consumer between 20 and 40 percent,” says the mayoral candidate, who proposes a number of other smart proposals to renew Racine’s sagging economy while making this historic industrial city an innovator when it comes to embracing renewable energy and related environmental initiatives.

The race to replace Becker is likely to be crowded. But if anyone can turn Racine Green — with a capital “G” — and establish some new models for politics at the municipal level in Wisconsin, it’s Pete Karas.

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IL Green Primary: Q&A With Deb Gordils

Five candidates are seeking the Illinois Green Party nomination to run in the special election to replace Rahm Emanuel in the US House in District 5. There will be a primary on March 3rd for the Green Party, the Democrats and the Republicans. The winners of the three primaries will face off in an April 7 Special Election.

We’ve asked the five candidates on the Green Party primary ballot to tell us a little bit about who they are, what they are running for, and why you should support them. We will post the replies from each as we get them.

First up is Deb Gordils:

Green Party Watch: Tell us a little bit about who you are.

Deb Gordils: I was born and raised a Northsider here in Chicago, am 48, Catholic, mother of two, One is adopted. One has special needs, I have a B.A, in Criminal Justice, Communication, from Northeastern, and an MA.ED from Dominican University. I went to Law School left and studied U.S History, World History at Loyola University, We are life long Cub Fans, own a Mutt dog and two rescued Cats. Life long volunteer of shelters and various Organizations that serve people when they are in need.

GPW: What made you decide to jump into this race? What are the top 2 or 3 issues that you want to bring to the table?

DG: Our Country is pleading for a new direction of Hope, filled with Improvements, and Security. We must not squander this time. We must step in and do what we can to reshape and strengthen Illinois.This Great State, Our Land of Lincoln, needs a new Party, needs the Green Party Leadership to stabilize its wobbling condition. Wobbling that has been brought by the hands of old corrupt Democratic ways and Bad Republican habits. The same old Political habits that must be squashed if we are to stop the laughter and Circus acts that are crippling Illinois today. Now is not the time for more of the same, It is instead time to show that we are tired of being on the losing end of Politics as Usual. Regular Politicians would rather give themselves raises while we lose our jobs, they would much rather secure their political career’s, rather than secure our State Economy, they would rather extend their power,than to extend their hand to help you! On March 3rd we have a chance , we have the Option to vote for a New Illinois. An Illinois, that will address Immigration Issues with Dignity, Elevate woman’s issues into the new millennium, Embrace the whole family, and Nurture the naturalness of our planet. You will need a strong voice during these difficult times… I will be that strong voice.

GPW: What differentiates the “Green Party candidate” from the Republicans or Democrats? Why the Green Party?
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DC Statehood Vs. DC Voting Rights

From the DC Statehood Green Party:

DC Statehood Green Party to Congress: The District of Columbia needs statehood, not ‘voting rights’

• Statehood Greens challenge the misconception that a constitutional amendment is necessary for DC statehood

• DC statehood is important for America — not just for District residents

WASHINGTON, DC — Leaders of the DC Statehood Green Party urged Congress to set aside proposed legislation for ‘DC Voting Rights’ and instead draft and enact legislation to make the District of Columbia a state.

The DC Statehood Green Party, which has promoted the goal of DC statehood since its founding as the DC Statehood Party in 1970, joins the Stand Up! for Democracy in DC ( and DC Statehood — Yes We Can ( coalitions in calling for Congress and the White House, which are now under the control of Democrats, to take action to make the District America’s 51st state.
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Cynthia McKinney to Obama: Give Us A Clean Break From War

Cynthia McKinney has a piece published on, a short excerpt here:

Statement on Obama Actions Thus Far re: Gaza

“It is time that the United States negotiate in good faith with Hamas, the legitimate representative of the Palestinian people. It is also time that the U.S. government tell Israel to release the Hamas Parliamentarians it illegally arrested. President Obama, please say something about Gaza. You have been roundly condemned for your continued silence in the face of war crimes and crimes against humanity committed by Israel in Gaza. Silence is complicity. Not one more bomb for Israel.”

Israeli action in Gaza has outraged the world. Starting with Israel’s inhumane blockade of Gaza when it didn’t like the 2006 election results that put Hamas officially into power. In September 2007, Israel declared Gaza an “enemy entity.” Of course, Israeli efforts to isolate the Gaza Strip can be traced back to Ariel Sharon as early as 2005. In carrying out its military Operation Cast Lead, Israel not only committed war crimes and crimes against humanity, it also carried out a long-standing goal of Gaza isolation. The President’s continued silence on Gaza and the Palestinian right of self-determination is unacceptable.

I would like to commend President Obama for recognizing that peace is the imperative and that the United States can play a constructive role in its attainment. However, placing a phone call to an irrelevant “leader” in an attempt to revive his political standing is not a route to peace: it is a journey down the same road that we’re already on, that is massacres, genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity, torture–all with U.S. weapons, paid for by U.S. taxpayers.

Read the rest here.

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Todd Price: Put the Public Back in Public Education

Todd Price is campaigning hard in his race for Superintendent of Public Instruction, a state-wide non-partisan race in Wisconsin. The five candidates in the race face a February 17 Primary to winnow the field to two. Price has interviewed with the powerful teachers’ union WEAC and other groups around the state and has been working the teachers’ conferences and radio.

Madison’s Capital Times says:

DPI candidate Todd Price, a former Madisonian who is running with a lot of enthusiastic support from progressive activists (especially the Greens), started his campaign late. But he is getting up to speed fast.

Price, a college professor, has a great Web site, and the best slogan so far: “Put the Public Back in Public Education: Professor Price for Superintendent of Schools”


Presumed frontrunner Tony Evers, who is competing for the same pro-public education votes as Price, should be wary of his young rival. Price is obviously very serious about this race.

Wisconsin Eye interviewed all five candidates and the videos are posted here. Compare Todd Price to “presumed frontrunner” Tony Evers and judge for yourself.
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Rosa Clemente and the Path of Most Resistance Tour

Rosa Clemente, 2008 Green candidate for Vice President, announces ‘Path of Most Resistance’ speaking tour

WASHINGTON, DC — Rosa Clemente, the Green Party’s 2008 candidate for Vice President of the United States, has announced a national speaking tour with a focus on Hip Hop conferences, symposiums, town hall meetings, and many other public events, as well as Black History Month, Women’s History Month, and Latino Heritage Month.

Know Thy Self Productions LLC is organizing the tour, which is titled ‘The Path of Most Resistance Tour 2009.’ Ms. Clemente can be reached at and at 347-489-9738.

“The tour will be a chance to continue speaking about the important themes we raised in the McKinney-Clemente campaign,” said Ms. Clemente. “While while many in this country, particularly the Hip-Hop generation, have high hopes for the Obama Administration, now is not the time to be silent. The first few months are critical — we must make our voices heard, if we want to see a real change in the direction of the United States.”
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Racine Mayor Resigns – Pete Karas Running

Last week the Mayor of Racine, WI (pop: 81,000) was arrested for child pornography and attempted child enticement following a sting operation in which Mayor Gary Becker arranged to meet a state agent posing as a 14 year old girl in a chat room. The (now former) Mayor was arrested at a Mall where he had arranged to meet the “girl”. Becker resigned today.

Pete Karas, a former alderman in Racine, today responded to a “Draft Pete” campaign by officially filing to run for Mayor. The date of a special election has not been set, but at least two others have thrown their hats in the ring with more candidates possible.

Pete Karas is well known and respected in Racine. He served five years on the Racine City Council, was one of the Wisconsin coordinators for the Cynthia McKinney campaign, volunteered for the Malik Rahim campaign and is currently the campaign manager for the Todd Price for Superintendent of Public Instruction campaign in Wisconsin this Spring.

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Five Seek Green Party Nomination to Replace Rahm in Illinois

Five candidates have stepped up to seek the Illinois Green Party nomination for the special election to replace Rahm Emanuel in the U.S. House (5th District). The partisan primaries will be March 3rd, with the general (special) election on April 7. From the Illinois Green Party:


* Stage is set for IL Greens’ first contested primary, outside of a presidential race

CHICAGO – Five candidates will compete for the Green Party nomination in the 5th Congressional District Special Primary on March 3, according to candidate filings made with the Illinois Board of Elections. The deadline for such filings was at 5 p.m. today.

Candidates include Alan Augustson, who ran for the seat as a Green in 2008; Mark Arnold Fredrickson, who ran against Emanuel in the 2004 Democratic Primary; Deb Gordils, who ran against Alderman Dick Mell (33rd Ward) in 2003; Matt Reichel, who is making his first run for public office; and Simon Ribeiro, also making his first run for office.

The 5th Congressional District seat was vacated recently by Democrat Rahm Emanuel, who took a position as White House Chief of Staff in the Obama Administration.

The Illinois Green Party became an “established” political party following the 2006 election, when gubernatorial candidate Rich Whitney received more than 10% of the vote. As a result, Green Party candidates at all levels can collect fewer signatures to get on the ballot, and Green Party candidates compete in primaries. The first Green Party primary was held in February of 2008, though most of the races were uncontested, except for the presidential race, which had four candidates.


Alan Augustson

Mark Arnold Fredrickson

Deb Gordils
(no Web address available)

Matt Reichel

Simon Ribeiro

Independent Political Report has more about the candidates here.

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