GreenGram: Green Party of NJ Newsletter

This is one of my favorite state green party newsletters, so I’m posting it in its entirety…

Green Party of New Jersey

The Green Party of NJ Bulletin – December 2009

* Campaign results and assessments
* County local reports
* Greens Say NO to Obama’s Escalation in Afghanistan
* CT GP would welcome Nader into race against Dodd
* GPNJ members represented in latest Green Horizon Magazine
* Events Calendar
* Links



Steven Welzer for Assembly, District 12

I ran a low-key campaign but did manage to get our
message around, and over 2% of those casting votes
for Assembly candidates in this generally conservative
district voted Green (over 1,500 votes). This makes me
feel that two energetic Green Party candidates running a
coordinated campaign in just about any district next time
around (2011) could reasonably set a target of garnering
5% or more of the vote.

I had a campaign web site (www.newmenu.org/stevenwelzer) and:
* had press coverage and letters appear in the
Star-Ledger, Asbury Park Press, Trenton Times, Windsor-Hights Herald;
* distributed over 1,000 campaign flyers;
* debated my Democratic and Republican opponents at an
Asbury Park Press editorial board meeting;
* had my campaign and biographical info listed on nj.com,
njvoterinfo.org, votesmart.org, growvotes.org, lwvnj.org,
and other sites;
* put out dozens of campaign signs at key intersections in the district;
* submitted questionnaire responses to over a dozen organizations.

I want to thank all those who contributed time, money, or good wishes to my campaign.

– – – – – – – –

Running for Council in Surf City (Ocean County) Jason
Koralja got 18 votes (1.40%). He reports:

Surf City has 1,033 registered voters, of which
about 44% are Republicans, 17% are Democrats, and 38% are
unaffiliated. A handful are registered with a third party.

For my campaign, I sent out a letter to about 25% of the
registered voters in town and I was interviewed by The
SandPaper (a free weekly news magazine that services
Southern Ocean County).

– – – – – – – – – – – –

Report on my campaign

By Sean Dunne

[Sean ran under the label “Fight Corruption” but he had
the backing of – and a close relationship with – the
Monmouth County Greens. On Dec. 17 Sean will be hosting
a campaign review session at his house: 7 Merrie Mill Lane,
Holmdel. Greens are encouraged to attend. In addition
to reviewing the 2009 campaigns we can start to talk
about making a greater effort in 2010. RSVP’s are
requested – call Sean at 732-264-3292.]

We achieved a great result (over 3,400 votes, over 5% of
the voters) and it’s important to learn from this
campaign so that future campaigns achieve greater
success. I’ll organize some of what I learned into a few
central themes.

Media: I underestimated just how cynical and dishonest
the media would be. I had several positive experiences
with some journalists and newsletter editors, but the
Asbury Park Press is terrible to deal with due to their
dishonest coverage.

Money: We had very limited financial resources, but we
did rely on social networking sites more than any other
candidate. These sites are free to use, and therefore
allow candidates with less money to connect to different
networks of people.

The Message: The central theme of our campaign was
fighting corruption. Soon after I opted for “Fight
Corruption” as the phrase under my name on the ballot,
the FBI produced a sting of crooked politicians and
others. This obviously helped demonstrate the need to
reduce corruption in New Jersey, but we tried to point
out to people that corruption not only exists in the
delivery of white envelopes at diners. We argued that the
current Republican-Democrat duopoly is itself corrupt,
and voters must fight back against it.

Voters: The most enjoyable part of the campaign. They
absolutely want change from the duopoly. By “they,” I
mean people from a range of political perspectives. This
provided me with great optimism for the future. We just
have to keep fighting.

– – – – – – – – – –

National highlights


Greens in California made history again by winning, for
the fourth time in American history, a Green Party
majority on a town council. Pam Hartwell-Herrero finished
first of seven candidates to join Lew Treamine and Larry
Bragman on the majority-Green Fairfax Town Council.
(Greens also earned majorities on the Arcata council in
the late ’90s and in Sebastopol, CA and the village of
New Paltz, NY earlier in this decade.)

Jim Harvey and Paul Perkovic both won re-election to the
Montara Water and Sanitary District, San Mateo County.
Curtis Robinson won re-election as a Marin County Board
of Education Member, Trustee Area 6. He finished first of
two candidates with 2,385 votes or 61%.

Dana Silvernale won her race for Northern Humboldt Union
High School District. She finished third of four
candidates for three seats with 3,239 votes or 22.7%.


In New Canaan, three Greens – Estela Lopez, Cole
Stangler, Hector Lopez – ran for Constable and
all were elected.


Kevin Donoghue won re-election to the Portland City
Council, District 1, Cumberland County. He finished first
of two candidates with 1,779 votes or 66%. David Marshall
ran unopposed for a seat on the Portland City Council
from District 2.


Dan Robinson ran unopposed for re-election to Takoma Park
Town Council, Ward 3, Montgomery County. Christine Nagle
won her race for College Park City Council District 1,
Prince George’s County. She finished second of five
candidates for two seats with 281 votes or 28%.


Bruce Menin, who serves on the city’s School Committee,
was elected to the Newburyport Charter Commission. He
finished fifth of twenty candidates for nine seats with
997 votes.

Chuck Turner won re-election to the Boston City Council
from District 7. He finished first of two candidates with
5,516 votes or 59.8%


Cam Gordon was re-elected to the Minneapolis City Council
from Ward 2, Hennepin County. He finished first of two
candidates. Annie Young was re-elected to the Minneapolis
Park & Recreation Board. She finished second of four
candidates for three seats.

New York

Jennifer Dotson ran unopposed for Ithaca Common Council,
Ward One, Tompkins County. Mary Jo Long was re-elected to
the Afton Town Council in Chenango County. She finished
second of three candidates for two seats with 222 votes.

Lynne Serpe put the Green Party on the map in New York
City, winning nearly 25% in her race for a City Council seat.


Dennis Spisak was re-elected to the Struthers Board of
Education, Mahoning County. He finished third of four
candidates for three seats with 1,695 votes or 22.1%.


Bill Smedley ran unopposed for re-election to Nippenose
Township Constable, Lycoming County, and Jay Sweeney ran
unopposed for Falls Township Auditor, Wyoming County.

– – – – – – – –

To get a sneak preview of the 2010 Green Party candidates
from your area, visit the Green Party’s comprehensive
election database at: www.gp.org/elections.shtml

– – – – – – – –

Post-election analysis of my campaign

by Howie Hawkins, Green Party of New York State

[Howie was the Green Party candidate for Syracuse City
Council in District 4]

Thank you to all the volunteers and contributors to my
campaign. 41 percent is a higher vote than a Green
candidate has ever received in Syracuse. We’ve never done
the kind of doorstep and phone canvassing, voter ID, and
GOTV that we did this time. Our street presence on
Election Day surpassed every other campaign in the city.

From what I’ve seen of the Campaign Finance Reports
posted at the state Board of Election, our broad base of
small individual contributors far surpassed that of any
other campaign in the city. We raised more money that way
than any other district council candidate, unless they
spent a lot more in the last 10 days that has not yet
been reported.

The major party candidates relied on a small number of
big contributions from wealthy individuals and the PACs
of landlords, developers, and other business interests,
and, unfortunately, the unions. About the only evidence
my opponent had a campaign was two mailers to voters sent
on his behalf from 1199 SEIU in the last five days.

The unions continue to naively believe they can buy
friends for workers in the parties of big business, whose
campaign contributions dwarf labor’s. Memo to the unions
from a rank-and-file Teamster: The bosses have two
parties. We need one of our own.

I am only a little disappointed that we did not win the
office this time. We needed to bring about 10 percent
more of the voters off the Democratic line at the top of
the ballot and down to the bottom line to vote Green. In
the end we were beaten by the “Zombie Democrats” who vote
their brand loyalty without knowing who the candidates
are. They would vote for George W. Bush and Dick Cheney
if they were on the Democratic line, as they auto-
matically click every lever across the Democratic
row on the machines.

But I am encouraged about the future. The platform on
which we campaigned – living wages, community hiring
hall, public power, municipal broadband, municipal
development bank, sustainability plan, progressive tax
reform, full funding for schools and youth programs –
is popular with the voters we were able to reach. The
41 percent vote gives us a stronger voice to push for
these reforms between now and the next election, when
the Greens will be back to challenge the corporate
rulers’ two-party duopoly again.



Bergen County

The Greens, in the persons of Ed Fanning and myself,
joined forces with supporters of “Medicare for All” in
Jersey City’s Journal Square on November 21st. I spoke
briefly to the activists assembled at the rally about the
Green Party and our advocacy of a Single-Payer Health
Plan. The coalition of sponsors included: Physicians for
a National Healthcare Program, Northern New Jersey
Healthcare Now, and One Plan/One Nation. We then
went on a brief march through the area.

Submitted by Alvin Meyer

– – – – – – – – – – –

Essex County

For Immediate Release, December 4, 2009

Essex Greens Call for “Peace on Earth
and Climate Justice” this Holiday Season

The Essex Greens today announced that they will be
holding a vigil from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday,
December 12th, in front of the main Bloomfield Post
Office at the corner of Bloomfield Ave. and Montgomery
St. (across from the Municipal Building).

December 12th will be a worldwide day of action taking
place during the United Nations Climate Change Conference
in Copenhagen, Denmark. 192 nations are meeting there
from Dec. 7-Dec. 18 to try to come to an agreement on a
new treaty to take stronger action to reduce carbon
dioxide and other greenhouse gases that are dangerously
heating up the atmosphere.

Thousands of actions around the world will be happening
on December 12th, coordinated by several international
networks. More information can be found at: www.tcktcktck.org

Ted Glick, coordinator of the Essex Greens, explained the
purpose of the Bloomfield action:

“During this holiday season, it is appropriate that we
take action to oppose wars for oil in Iraq and
Afghanistan and for a rapid shift from dirty fossil fuels
to clean, renewable energy. The US negotiators in
Copenhagen need to know that we are watching what they
are doing and that we want them to support policies that
will lead to a rapid shift to a clean energy economy.
This will create millions of jobs, clean up our air and
water, end our oil addiction and rebuild our communities.
It’s what the United States has to be about.”

All interested groups and individuals are invited to
participate. For more information about the action go to:
www.essexcountygreens.org or call 973-338-5398

– – – – – – – – – – –

Mercer County

Gail Dixon of the Mercer County Greens will host a Green
holiday party on Saturday, Dec. 19 (3:00 to 9:00pm).
Location: 190 Wilfred Avenue, Hamilton, 08610. Join us
for good company, good conversation, and we’ll even take
a little time to discuss strategic planning for GPNJ.
There will be a pot-luck dinner, so bring something to
share. Please RSVP to Gail if you are planning to attend:

– – – – – – – – – – –

Monmouth County

Coordinator Rich Fuller participated in the following
activities this fall:

. At the Monmouth County Board of Freeholders’ publicly-
held planning session, Rich spoke out against the
proposed “Insanity Island” Liquefied Natural Gas project.
(Later that day, the Freeholders voted unanimously
*against* the proposal and thereby in support of Clean
Ocean Action’s opposition!).

. Distribution of campaign yard signs and door-to-door
literature for our locally-endorsed Independent
candidate, Sean Dunne, who will host a discussion to
review and analyze the campaign at a special meeting of
the Monmouth Greens on December 17 (Greens from around
the state are invited to attend).

. “Beach Sweep” for Clean Ocean Action – whereby debris
items were collected, categorized and counted as part of
a state-wide ocean pollution report.

. Attended the morning and afternoon sessions of two
panel discussions on the topic of “Journalism: Countering
the Culture of Corruption” at Monmouth University
sponsored in part by the Citizens’ Campaign.

. Continued picketing for peace at the gates of Fort
Monmouth and protested Pres. Obama’s Afghan surge
decision in New Brunswick at a peace vigil. In both
venues Rich’s octagonal red sign proclaimed “STOP



The Green Party is calling on President Obama to reverse
his Afghanistan policy by pledging an immediate cease-
fire in the Afghanistan war and a complete withdrawal of
US troops and military contractors. President Obama
intends to send 30,000 more troops, raising the number of
US personnel in Afghanistan to over 100,000.

“Millions of Americans voted for Barack Obama in 2008
under the impression that he was an ‘antiwar’ candidate,
even though Mr. Obama supported the war in Afghanistan
and favored a limited withdrawal from Iraq,” said 2008
Green Party Vice Presidential candidate Rosa Clemente.
“Troop escalation will not ‘finish the job’ in
Afghanistan and neighboring Pakistan,” she says.
“We’ll be further mired in a war that shouldn’t have
happened in the first place.”

The Green Party of the United States will participate in
antiwar protests scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 12 in
Washington, DC, and other locations throughout the US.

– – – – – – – – – –

Green Pages, the national newsletter of the Green Party,
is releasing new content regularly through an on-line edition:


– – – – – – – – – –

GPUS has endorsed the December 11-12 call in and action
days re: the Nuclear Information and Resource Service’s
“Don’t Nuke the Climate” campaign. For details, see:

Also, GPUS has signed on to the following:
(demanding that the Department of Energy sanction, not
award, Motorola Israel, whose “virtual fences” are used
to support dozens of illegal Israeli settlements in the
West Bank and who provided fuses for Israel’s MK80 series
of bombs)

– – – – – – – – – –

Help GPUS reach the goal set at our national meeting of
funding operations with the help of 500 sustainers by the
end of 2009. Also: If you receive gift cards for the
holidays that you really don’t want … don’t let them
sit in your dresser drawer until they lose their value or
you throw them away next summer … send them to the
Green Party! GPUS will gladly “recycle” any gift cards,
especially office or general supply stores (but they will
find a creative way to re-use any gift cards you can
donate). Please mail with your name and address to:
Green Party of the United States, PO Box 57065, Washington, DC 20037



Media release: November 17, 2009

Green Party of Connecticut officials announced today that
they would welcome Ralph Nader into the 2010 race for US
Senate and think he would have a good chance to win
against current Senator Dodd.

“Since the media reports began in local and national web
sites last week, we have seen hundreds of responses
urging him to run,” said Green Party spokesperson Tim
McKee. He added, “With Dodd losing in many polls to the
Republicans who have announced, we think Nader could be
a clear choice to many who have lost faith in Dodd and
his scandals with the banking and financial industries.
To win, Nader would have to raise $3-5 million, which he
has done easily in past campaigns, and build an army of
hundreds of volunteers for the race.”

State Co-chair Steve Fournier said, “We have worked well
with Nader and he knows the local Greens very well. We
are very excited and can supply him with many workers if
he chooses to run.”

Mike DeRosa, also a State Co-chair said, “Nader is
America’s Public Citizen Number 1! We just want to know
when to start gathering the signatures for the

The Green Party of Connecticut has created an online
petition – Nader for US Senate 2010 – which they hope
Greens all around the country will sign on to:

– – – – – – – – – – –

Below are excerpts from an article in the Litchfield
County Times (12/3/09)

Recently the Green Party of Connecticut has encouraged
Mr. Nader to run, and if he decides to do so, Mr. Nader
could be cross-endorsed by other minor parties. “We want
to help all of the small parties,” Mr. Nader said. “Help
them in the future to provide more competition.” He has
described the current two-party system as having a choke-
hold on national politics.

A Quinnipiac University Poll released Nov. 12 showed 54
percent of voters disapprove of the job that Mr. Dodd is
doing, up from 49 percent in September. The same survey
showed the five-term incumbent Democrat particularly
vulnerable among unaffiliated voters, the largest voting
bloc in an otherwise Democratic-leaning state.

More than 100 people turned out to hear Mr. Nader talk in
West Hartford, including some Green Party members who
held signs that read, “Run Ralph Run!” The state’s Green
Party has been stepping up efforts to encourage Nader to
get into the race, saying that this marks one of the best
opportunities for the Greens to win a senate seat. Tim
McKee, a Green Party spokesman in Connecticut, told the
Associated Press that Mr. Dodd’s low poll numbers give
his party one of its best opportunities.

[Some GPNJ members turned out to show their support when
Nader spoke in Princeton and at Brookdale College on Dec. 5.
Note: It’s not clear at this point whether Nader, if he
decides to enter the CT race, would run on the Green Party
line or run as an Independent with Green Party backing.]



Three members of GPNJ have articles or letters in the
Fall 2009 issue of Green Horizon Magazine. GPNJ Treasurer
Lynn Petrovich offers a scathing critique of HAVA (the
Help America Vote Act). She notes that: “The
controversies surrounding the 2000 election, especially
lack of conformity in the voting process, resulted in the
Help America Vote Act [but] under its auspices, little
that is problematic about our election system is being
resolved.” Lynn especially details the issues surrounding
touch screen voting machines and electronic computation,
where voters cannot witness how their vote is handled.

Also in this issue: Anthony Wille of Sussex County
submitted a letter inquiring about the relationship
between the decentralism of Community-based Economics and
that of Ron Paul’s Libertarian perspective. Steve Welzer
answers, explaining why Libertarianism is a misguided
path for decentralists. Excerpt:

“Libertarians are strong on critique of the centralized
nation-state and its intervention in the economy, but
weak in their formulation of an alternative model …
They are in agreement with leftists when they assert that
a nation-state government is fundamentally an agency of
the national power elite. It is not surprising, then,
that anti-statists who intuitively sense the desirability
of decentralization are sometimes drawn to Libertarianism
and Austrian school economics … without comprehending
how unrealistic, amoral, and unnatural their ideology is
in practice. As an alternative to statist economics,
Libertarians advocate contractual relationships within
the context of a pure free-market economy. No society has
ever operated in such a way, and for good reason: human
beings don’t live as atomized opportunity-maximizing
individuals … Greens, on the other hand, offer an eco-
communitarian model of relocalization that would restore
our natural, organic, and sane human social heritage.”

To get a copy or to subscribe:
Green Horizon Magazine, PO Box 476, Topsham, ME 04086




Thursday, Dec. 10 (Human Rights Day)

This could be our last chance before the Senate votes to
speak out for Medicare for All. There will be a rally at
the corner of 1 Gateway Center, Market Street (across
from Penn Station) in Newark – from 4:00 to 6:00pm. Bring
all types of noise makers … horns, drums, tambourines
… Let’s be heard! We want Menendez and Lautenberg to
know Medicare for All is a Human Right. Please bring
signs reflecting: Medicare For All is the only humane
choice for healthcare reform. For more information:

– – – – – – – – – – –

Friday, Dec. 11

350 Candle Light Vigil at the Jersey Shore – 6:00pm.
Location: On the Boardwalk, 5th Ave and Ocean Ave, Asbury
Park, NJ 07712. Dress warm; bring candles or flashlights.

Around the world people will gather at iconic and
strategic locations in their communities and will light
candles of hope to stand in solidarity with the citizens
of the nations whose very survival is threatened by the
climate crisis. Come and participate in a global 350.org
Candle Light Vigil.

350 parts per million (ppm) is what many scientists,
climate experts, and progressive national governments are
now saying is the safe upper limit for CO2 in our
atmosphere. Right now we are at approximately 390 ppm and
this number is rising by about 2 ppm every year. It is
critical that we get back to 350! This vigil falls right
in the middle of the two-week Copenhagen talks. President
Obama will deliver a speech in Copenhagen on December 9.
The following day he’ll go to Norway to collect his Nobel
prize. We need to send a signal to say that speeches and
prizes are good, but action is what’s really required –
enough action to head us back towards 350 parts per
million. Learn more here:

– – – – – – – – – – –

Saturday, Dec. 12

Our own Essex County Green Party is sponsoring a
vigil in Bloomfield and all Greens are encouraged
to participate (see article above).

In addition, there is an action being planned
in Washington, DC:

Tell Obama “No You Can’t!”


There will be an emergency protest rally on Saturday,
Dec. 12, from 11 am to 4 pm in Lafayette Park (across
from the White House) in Washington, DC. It’s being
organized by the End US Wars coalition. The speakers
list includes Cynthia McKinney, Rep. Dennis Kucinich,
Nobel Peace Prize nominee Kathy Kelly, Pulitzer Prize
winning journalist Chris Hedges, author David Swanson,
Rev. Graylan Hagler, Capt. Ron Fisher, Gael Murphy
(CODEPINK), Debra Sweet (World Can’t Wait), Elaine Brower
(Military Families Speak Out), Brian Becker (ANSWER),
Mathis Chiroux (Iraq Veterans Against the War), among
many other national peace leaders. Musicians Jordan Page,
Head-Roc and others will perform.

In conjunction with the rally on Dec. 12, the film
“Rethink Afghanistan” will be shown Friday, Dec. 11, from
6 to 8 pm at Busboys & Poets, 14th & V Streets NW.

– – – – – – – – – – –

Monday, Dec. 14

NORML NJ and the Coalition for Medical Marijuana NJ will
hold a rally in front of the Somerset County Court House
(20 North Bridge St, Somerville) from 8:30am to 12:00
noon in support of multiple sclerosis patient John Ray
Wilson. Wilson faces 20 years in prison for growing 17
marijuana plants that he used to treat his MS. A
fundraiser luncheon will be held for Wilson immediately
following the rally at the nearby East Star Asian Buffet
(69 Main St, Somerville). Tickets are donations to
Wilson’s legal defense fund. More information at:

– – – – – – – – – – –

Wednesday, Dec. 16

“No Impact Man” – the next in a series of environmental
film screenings put on by Community Green
(www.CommunityGreen.org). Location: Montclair Public
Library (50 S Fullerton Ave, Montclair NJ 07043;
973-744-0500 ext. 2262 or 2284). Time: 6:30pm

The Montclair Township Environmental Affairs office and
Community Green present another eye-opening film about
what we can do for the future of our environment. No
Impact Man gives us an entertaining vision of a family
that tries to eliminate all the over-use of energy in
their lives. Join us as we participate in New American
Dream’s nationwide pre-DVD release screenings of this
documentary and a post-screening discussion about how to
simplify our holidays this year. During the two-weeks of
the historic UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen
(December 7th-18th), New American Dream is bringing
people together to talk about the impact of holiday
spending on their lives and the environment. To learn
more about the film, google: “No Impact Project.” For
more information about the Montclair screening or about
Community Green, contact Marnie Vyff at 973-335-4469 or

– – – – – – – – – – –

Thursday, Dec. 17

Special meeting of the Monmouth County Green Party at
the home of Sean Dunne: 7 Merrie Mill Lane, Holmdel 07733.
Greens from all around the state are encouraged to attend.
In addition to reviewing the 2009 campaigns we can start
to talk about our 2010 candidacies. RSVP’s are requested
– call Sean at 732-264-3292.

– – – – – – – – – – –

Saturday, Dec. 19

Green holiday pot-luck at the home of Gail Dixon:
190 Wilfred Ave, Hamilton NJ 08610. Time: 3:00 to 9:00pm.
Please RSVP to Gail if you are planning to attend:

– – – – – – – – – – –

January 2-17

Princeton Environmental Film Festival. Visit:

– – – – – – – – – – –

Saturday, Jan. 30

Northeast Organic Farming Association (NOFA-NJ)’s 25th
Anniversary Conference at the Douglas Campus Center in
New Brunswick. Info: www.nofanj.org


Interesting Links Re: Green Parties Worldwide


The above link contains statistics reflecting how many
Greens hold elective office in national parliaments,
congresses, and legislatures, as well as in the European
Parliament. In summary: As of July 2009, Greens hold a
total of 293 national-level seats – 234 seats in 16
European nations and another 50 in Australia (5), Brazil
(14), Mexico (22) and New Zealand (9). There are also 55
Greens holding seats in the 736-member European

Data on historical election results in the US:


The GreenGram is circulated bi-monthly in an effort to
keep all GPNJ members informed about party news,
Green-related activities, and upcoming events. Members
are encouraged to submit articles and event announcements.

The deadline for the next issue will be January 15.
Please submit material for inclusion to:



Green Party of NJ Bulletin — www.GPNJ.org
P.O. Box 9802, Trenton, NJ 08650

To subscribe, become a member of GPNJ!


Ronald Hardy

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