No Holds Barr: The Co-opting of the Green Party?

April 18, 2012 in Editorials, Presidential Campaign

The following article was sent to us by Lauren Windsor, a self described civil libertarian and registered member of the California Green Party, and author of the website Lady Libertine. We are publishing it in its entirety, without editing. Green Party Watch does not necessarily share the views expressed by authors of articles we share here.

No Holds Barr:  The Co-opting of the Green Party?

Firebrand comedian and aspiring politico Roseanne Barr is running for the Green Party’s nomination for president of the United States in a move characterized by many as a publicity stunt à la Donald Trump. But with Barr the situation is not entirely as it seems. Yes, she sought to be recognized as an official candidate just as NBC picked up her comedy pilot “Downwardly Mobile,” but Barr has been talking about running for POTUS — and also for prime minister of Israel — since at least 2010. Her progressive persona is no act: Her 1988-’97 “Roseanne” sitcom examined working-class socioeconomic issues, as will her new show, and she has been a vocal supporter of Occupy, having addressed the Zuccotti Park assembly on the day of the movement’s inception. No one questions her progressive bona fides, but many question her motives.

At contention is whether rules were innocently skirted — or intentionally broken — to allow Barr to be officially recognized by the Green Party of the United States (GPUS) in time for an important California ballot deadline. With 65 delegates out of a convention of 400 and a majority of state parties with fewer than ten delegates, the California primary is an important win for Green candidates. Also at issue are apparent conflicts of interest for voting members of the national party’s Steering Committee, whose duties include the oversight and coordination of other GPUS groups like the Presidential Campaign Support Committee. Note that the national and state parties are different entities under the same Green umbrella.

On Barr’s presidential campaign and personal websites, she advocates the “Green Tea Party” and enjoins viewers to “Occupy the Green Party.” This language irks many party members, who feel that they are complicit in a ploy for comeback publicity, rather than part of a serious campaign; they are wary of being co-opted. Nationally, Greens are divided. On one hand, a celebrity like Barr gets people talking again about the Green Party, which suffered when Ralph Nader’s campaign was widely blamed for Al Gore’s loss in 2000. On the other hand, many feel that front-runner Jill Stein is doing the bulk of the heavy lifting in rebuilding the party, and that Barr’s charged rhetoric may ultimately damage the party’s credibility with independents and progressives.

Barr is no stranger to high profile PR debacles. She famously screeched “The Star- Spangled Banner” at a San Diego Padres baseball game and dressed as Hitler for a photo shoot for Jewish magazine Heeb. Last month, Barr was embroiled in controversy for tweeting the address of the parents of George Zimmerman, who shot 17-year-old Trayvon Martin in Florida.

Despite its concerns over behavior like this, the Green Party of California (GPCA) tried to get Barr on its primary ballot. She applied to the state party on the last possible day for its recognition, and was ineligible at that time because she was registered as a Democrat. On Nov. 29, GPCA Coordinating Committee Co-Chair and former GPUS National Co-Chair Sanda Everette sent a letter to Barr and former campaign treasurer Eric Weinrib outlining how she could get placed on the ballot by California Secretary of State Debra Bowen via recognition from the Green Party of the United States. Weinrib contacted GPUS Presidential Campaign Support Committee Co-Chair Tom Yager in January to re-start the process for obtaining recognition from the Green Party of the United States. “Downwardly Mobile” was picked up by NBC the following day.

According to GPCA Secretary of State Liaison Jared Laiti in an e-mail obtained by the reporter, Weinrib told Laiti that he called Bowen’s office on Jan. 23, and that the secretary of state told him that Laiti would have to amend the state party’s candidate list to include Barr. Weinrib then asked the liaison how that could happen, though Everette’s previous letter provided no such option. Laiti wrote, “I indicated that there is no way I could say Roseanne was recommended by GPCA because we had a specific process for doing that, which we are now outside of.” In response to Weinrib’s attempt, the Green Party of California clarified its position on Barr to Bowen’s office in a Jan. 29 letter, stating that it would not recommend anyone else for its ballot, and that the secretary of state should refer to the national party’s determination.

The secretary of state would release the names of presidential primary candidates she deemed to be “generally advocated for” on February 6, and would determine that advocacy based primarily on six criteria, including input from state parties (extended to the national party). Barr met none of the “other criteria” listed except for national recognition before the Feb. 6 press release, significant as a major national media event, and because no announced candidates can be removed from the ballot thereafter unless they personally drop out. Weinrib stressed to Everette and Yager that he wanted to gain national party recognition by Feb. 1 to make the Feb. 6 press release. The Barr campaign could have attempted to gain secretary of state recognition on its own — official Green Party recognition is not required, but it would have been important in Bowen’s determination without the other qualifications.

On Jan. 25, Yager announced Barr’s candidacy to the Presidential Campaign Support Committee, and set into motion a one-week period for lodging objections. That window would end at 11:50 p.m. EST on Feb. 1, rather than 11:59 PST, which is standard national party practice for committee voting, though not an explicit bylaw. Despite Barr’s failure to meet eligibility requirement 10-1.7 (which states that candidates must raise $5,000 from independent sources by Feb. 1), Yager said that Barr had met the criteria for recognition. In a last-minute Presidential Campaign Support Committee conference call on Jan. 31, the committee learned that Barr had not fulfilled 10-1.7 and that the campaign had not made a formal financial filing with the Federal Elections Commission (FEC), the normal route of 10-1.7 validation. The committee discussed ways to verify compliance and ultimately agreed on requiring the campaign to submit a signed affidavit and a list of donors.

According to Yager, both he and Weinrib believed “that February 6 was a hard deadline for primary ballot access” and that it would be “crucial” for Barr to be recognized on Feb. 1. But Feb. 1 was only “crucial” for making Bowen’s press release. Barr still had nearly two months — until March 23 — to get onto the primary ballot. Mike Feinstein, a California delegate to the Presidential Campaign Support Committee and a former Green mayor of Santa Monica, pointed that fact out to Yager, and explicitly told him and the committee that he would challenge Barr’s recognition if she failed to produce the documentation on February 1. The next day, the affidavit and donor list were not provided, and Feinstein objected to Barr’s candidacy at 11:53 p.m. EST, immediately after he became aware of the deficiency. Yager ignored Feinstein’s objection, giving him no leeway on the three minutes past the 11:50 cutoff.

For verification Weinrib sent Yager a scanned copy of a Wells Fargo deposit slip for three unattributed contributions totaling $5,001. First Republic, not Wells Fargo, was the bank listed on the original FEC filing for the campaign. According to Yager, in his interview for this article and within his correspondence to the Green Party National Committee, Weinrib refused to specify the donors, saying that Barr was in compliance and that “donors would be known when the quarterly FEC filing was made.” That filing was due on April 15, and the donor names will be released at some point thereafter.

Despite the 10-1.7 deficiency and over the objection of Feinstein, Yager officially certified Barr on Feb. 2 and forwarded her deposit slip as proof of financial compliance. Weinrib did not sign the affidavit of financial compliance requested by the Presidential Campaign Support Committee until Feb. 4. No donor list was provided. Bowen recognized Barr as a presidential candidate in her press release Feb. 6.

Because the state party believed Yager had broken the national party’s recognition rules for Barr, it sent a Feb. 29 letter to the Steering Committee and Yager requesting executive session to demand that Yager offer “clear and unambiguous answers” to the California group’s concerns. Executive session is used to discuss sensitive legal and financial matters of the party, such as those concerning potential candidates or elected officials. In a March 11 conference call, despite apparent conflicts of interest, Steering Committee members Farheen Hakeem and Tamar Yager failed to recuse themselves and voted against the state party’s request for executive session.

Hakeem, also a national co-chair, had announced Feb. 29 that she had accepted a position with the Barr campaign and would recuse herself if any conflicts of interest arose. Hakeem declined to comment on her actions for this story. Tamar Yager, Tom Yager’s wife, voted in a measure dealing with her own husband. According to Tamar Yager, “Executive session would not have changed the outcome of the SC’s [Steering Committee's] decision.” That decision was to urge the state party and Tom Yager to resolve the matter on their own. Three nay votes were cast on the conference call — two of them from Tamar Yager and Hakeem.

Barr made her first public campaign appearance at Rally in the Valley, a Green Party fundraising event in Los Angeles on March 23. When asked her to name her donors, she responded that she is doing “just grass roots all the way” in $10 and $25 denominations. Watch the video below to see her full response.

The major issue for the campaign is that Weinrib, who declined to comment, sought to circumvent the rules before getting recognition and then refused to comply once he got what he wanted. The problems with transparency and accountability are ironic coming from Barr, who seeks to represent Greens and support Occupy, two movements that cherish those very principles. Barr too did not respond to requests for an interview for this story.

Problematic for party leadership are Yager’s certification of Barr without 10-1.7 compliance, and the apparent conflicts of interest for Hakeem and Tamar Yager. In Yager’s interview for this story, he defended his actions as an effort to be as inclusive as possible. That inclusiveness did not extend, however, to Green Party candidate Harley Mikkelson or to the concerns of the state party. Yager rescinded Mikkelson’s recognition in December, citing a failure to fulfill eligibility criterion 10-1.5, which requires a support petition from 100 Greens. Ironically, Yager reported to the Presidential Campaign Support Committee that achieving national recognition would be important for Mikkelson to be placed on the California ballot by Bowen, neither of which Mikkelson accomplished.

Yager did note that he has nothing to gain from helping Barr, and that Stein is the only candidate to whom he has given and will give campaign donations. The issues between Yager and the Green Party of California deal largely with debates in semantics. Regarding financial compliance with 10-1.7, Yager said, “The rules don’t explicitly outline a verification mechanism.” But the rule does explicitly call for fundraising “not including self-financing.”

If candidates do not make FEC filings on time for verification and refuse to provide a donor list, is the Green Party just supposed to take them at their word? What then is the purpose of the requirement if it cannot be checked? Yager went on to say, “If I find out that self-financing was used to meet the initial $5,000 requirement, I will personally introduce the resolution to rescind PCSC [Presidential Campaign Support Committee] recognition for Roseanne.”

The Green Party of California does not necessarily believe that the donations are from self-financing. Rather, its concern comes more from the disregard for the rules. “We believe that we should follow the very rules that we have set for ourselves, and if we don’t agree with them, we should work to change them,” said Everette in her interview for this story.

At the very least rules were broken to accommodate Barr — at the very worst, laws. Many Greens support Barr’s candidacy nonetheless, noting the problem is mainly a concern to Californians. Those outside of the state may underestimate the power of unlikely celebrity political figures, having forgotten Arnold Schwarzenegger’s surprising gubernatorial win. Stein’s victory is hardly a foregone conclusion, according to her campaign manager, Ben Manski, in a prepared statement for this article:

The Stein campaign was devoting nearly all of its resources to achieving ballot access for the Green Party in the 2012 elections. … Barr’s entrance into this race has forced the Stein campaign to reallocate resources toward the primaries. … With a high profile and well-funded opponent now in the race, we are not taking the primaries for granted.

Green Party of Connecticut member Tim McKee opined, in an interview for this story, that Stein’s strategy of party building through ballot access makes her the more appealing candidate. McKee noted that Stein was out campaigning nearly every day, as if to highlight the contrast with the comparatively reclusive Barr. To her credit, Barr gave a compelling speech any liberal would love at the Rally in the Valley. In it she challenged critics of celebrity activists:

You know what really gripes me … I hate when people say, ‘Well who does Roseanne Barr, or some other show business type, think they are that anybody should give a damn about their political views?’ Well I have a question for those people … who do I have to be?

This double standard for celebrities that Barr decries did however have advantages in the determination of her recognition. Regardless of fame or fortune, transparency and accountability standards must be applicable to everyone seeking office. The question is not who you have to be, but rather what you have to be. And the answer to that is “honest.”

Lauren Windsor is a civil libertarian and a registered member of the Green Party.

95 responses to No Holds Barr: The Co-opting of the Green Party?

  1. Hi Lauren. Are you a registered CA Green? I don’t see you in our June 2011 voter file. Did you register recently?

  2. Considering Stein has swept the primaries so far I really don’t think Barr should worry the party.

  3. Why would you even publish this crap?

    • It is crap.

      Green Party Watch is disgracing themselves with this hit piece

      Someone should create another Green Party blog because these people are publishing material harmful to their own party.

      To say that laws were broken is hyperbole and reeks of libel.

      • “…harmful to their own party”

        And what party are you with, Jorge?

      • So if a member of a national committee works for a campaign, and then votes in a measure dealing with that very campaign in a conflict of interest, no rules were broken?

        I don’t specify which but leave it to your judgment, but conflicts of interest are against both Green and FEC rules.

        • It is the case that an SC member should recuse oneself if there is a conflict. But why are you writing this?

          What laws were broken?

          Keep in mind now, I ran for PotUS before and I know what goes down in CA and elsewhere.

          You want some transparency, then report on Feinstein’s stronghold on the NC and CA state committee, and LA County. This is some good dirt. What you wrote is just an attack piece on a candidate over some arbitrary rules that in the end mean nothing. Trust me, they were different four years ago.

      • Further, I don’t see how sacrificing principles of transparency and accountability is beneficial to the party.

        • That’s a very good point. Perhaps you could be transparent about who put you up to this so that there may be some real personal accountability rather than, say, you being thrown under the bus.

  4. Wow.

    We have here a serious case of “attack the messenger, not the message”.

    Calling the author a bitch?

    • The misogynist language is out of line, I must agree. There is no excuse for it.

      This is not a simple case of a messenger relaying a message. This is a case of a messenger crafting a message, engaging in a character assassination campaign of her own no doubt at the behest of a particular GPCA member who likely recruited her to the GPCA specifically to pen this piece – a GPCA member who sought to limit ballot choice for the Greens of an entire state.

      • no doubt, GPW going to join his campaign to destroy the party from within? He’s been doing it on the NC and IC for about a decade. In LA county for about as long.

        It’s too bad the CA Greens can’t unregister him. The SC didn’t get the chance to censor him because he resigned right before they were going to. He knows his game and I used to call him a comrade until he wouldn’t tell me his side of the story on anything when asked directly. He sent a coy reply pretending he knew nothing of what was happening in LA county. The whole NC knows and most of the State party leadership, but CA controls, in essence, veto power over the NC with his appointments serving as delegates.

        How do you rid yourself of a fish like this? Someone please tell us!

        • You stamp them out with hit pieces like Lauren’s rant and publicly humiliate them whenever possible. Just like Hunter S. Thompson did to Muskie in 1972.

          (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edmund_Muskie)

          But unlike Lauren’s hit piece, you use fact and logic in doing so.

          I smell a conflict of interest at GP Watch. It is the Fox News of the United States Green Party

          Let’s start a new GP Blog. I am contacting GPUSA to stop linking to this blog. Whoever is running this needs to be fired and stonewalled from GP activities and information.

          The fact that Lauren hasn’t even been green for 1 year is suspect. She probably was one of those lemming fools that voted for Obamney. How did that vote work out?

          This is disgraceful and unforgivable. “Bitch” is stating the obvious and is the kindest way possible to describe her and if you want me to use more psychologically harmful language that will not be construed as “misogynistic,” I will not hesitate to do so.

          This article is civil misconduct in the court of law; I am excising my freedom of speech on a pathetic blog. Do the math.

      • Misogynist language?

        I disagree, but respect your archaic view on equality.

        Many people, men and women, are bitches, especially poorly educated Americans like Lauren. Lauren is bad news. She is making libelous statements about members of the GP and Ms. Barr. It is shameful that GP Watch published this hit piece. It is full of nonsense rhetoric that helps no one, including Sanda E.

        GP Watch may get a call from Ms. Barr’s attorney.

        Her message and tone is bitchy and I have the right to free speech, we are not in Russia.

        Libertarians believe that public school should be abolished along with the EPA.

        Her “writing” is not healthy for the Green Party.

        Here is a recap in case you forgot that bitch is part of the English language that is used everyday on television, print, music and speech. I am going with 3a on this one.

        bitch
           [bich]
        noun
        1.
        a female dog: The bitch won first place in the sporting dogs category.
        2.
        a female of canines generally.
        3.
        Slang .
        a.
        a malicious, unpleasant, selfish person, especially a woman.
        b.
        a lewd woman.

        • I do not disagree with your general characterization of this very useful tool of a particularly disreputable character we all know and love. I but take issue with the language, and stand by my characterization of it.

          • I hope also to clarify that I by no means intend to suggest you, yourself, misogynist. I hope only to call attention to misogynist history behind use of the term as a pejorative. This may seem ‘archaic,’ but I do not here see the term employed in a fashion of reclaiming. It seems a gender specific pejorative.

    • Wow Ron.

      You have a serious case of not knowing where the fucking quotation marks go in a sentence.

      Why should someone care what you think or listen to you when you would fail 3rd grade grammar class?

      Greens should know basic grammar and sentence structure/syntax. It is the only way to be taken seriously by the general public and voters registered with other political parties.

      There is no message here, just libel. No laws were broken. If they were, people would be arrested already like Nativo Lopez.

      • It is not necessarily true that those who violate laws face arrest, and it is not necessarily true that those who face arrest – and even conviction – have in fact actually violated any laws. I’m of the mind that Mr. Lopez did not in fact engage in malfeasance of which he was accused, but accepted a plea that provided him relief. Something somehow tells me here that forces fueling this particular hit piece may be the very same who helped set Mr. Lopez up as a target for police state repression.

      • Wow, Jorge, you have a serious case of overstatementitis. Ron Hardy couldn’t pass the third grade? The proper place in a sentence for quotations? Someone doesn’t understand grammar here, I think it’s you. The proper place for quotations is around the quotation, wherever said quotation comes in the sentence. Getting all bent out of shape over grammar should be confined to those cases where one knows what they are talking about, at the very least.
        Moreover, grammarians have been saying for some time that common usage trumps antiquated rules in a laudable attempt to make the language more egalitarian. My high school advanced placement english teacher said (as recently as 1979), “the only rule matters is being clear, ambiguity is the only problem that matters. I think Ron’s sentence was quite clear, and I cannot, despite pondering it, figure out what grammar rules have been broken anyway. To refer to this piece as supported by GPW, when clearly the obviously placed disclaimer says otherwise is either disingenuine or lacking sense generally. To use the f word to describe the atrocious grammar of a perfectly good sentance… well that shouldn’t actually need comment.

        • Apparently this idiot, immediately above, has no idea there is supposed to be two sets of quotation marks, one to show where the quote begins, and one at the end. Let’s laugh at him and assume any thought he has is not well constructed.

          • Despite his out of proportion response, I agree very much with Jorge’s core sentiment “No laws were broken. If they were, people would be arrested already like Nativo Lopez.” Pretty much sums it up quite well for me.

  5. FYI:

    “Lady Libertine is a 1983 soft core erotic film by Gérard Kikoïne. This Playboy production, released theatrically in Europe and on television in the US, is an adaptation of the Victorian novel (1902) Frank and I by Bill Adler. French actress turned famous TV host Sophie Favier(fr) unsuccessfully sued to stop its release.[1]“

    • sure is nice to have such a great venue for discussion of all things that really matter being used to it’s full potential

  6. Wow, this has been a super productive dialogue. Way to go everyone.

  7. Yup, this is the old Green Party I know. Picking over rules and procedures for a campaign that’s entirely symbolic. Way to go, folks.

    I stand by what I wrote two months ago:
    http://kitchenmudge.wordpress.com/2012/02/05/just-a-word-before-it-hits-the-fan/

    • The larger point I’m trying to make is how ironic it is that someone representing Greens and supporting Occupy can avoid rules designed for transparency and accountability.

      As progressives, we are trying to fundamentally change the nature of the political machine which is skewed to the 1% and special interests. But it turns out that we are just a microcosm of the very problem we seek to eliminate.

  8. Unlike some who have posted here, I want to thank GPW for posting this hit piece, thereby providing a little more transparency than the author probably intended.

    Readers will have guessed that this article contains speculation and numerous errors. One of the most critical is an omission: The fact that what was done or decided on GPUS’ end had no impact on the CA Secretary of State’s decision to place Roseanne Barr on the CA Green Party primary ballot.

    I know, because I called the SoS office in early February, a few days after a couple individuals started alleging that Tom Yager (co-chair of the national GP Presidential Campaign Support Committee) had acted improperly, and that this action was an important factor in SoS’s decision to place Roseanne Barr on the CAGP primary ballot. I asked the SoS staffer directly – twice -whether GPUS’ recognition would have had any effect on the SoS’ decision (with or without other factors). The answer was NO.

    I informed Ms. Windsor of this when I learned that she had expressed interest in contacting me. She asked if she could use my statement on the record, and I told her she could. Notably, she has neglected to include this critical information.

    These statements (including the garbled opening) regarding the factors that went into the SoS’s decision are FALSE:
    “… Barr met none of the “other criteria” listed except for national recognition before the Feb. 6 press release, significant as a major national media event, … . ” “The Barr campaign could have attempted to gain secretary of state recognition on its own — official Green Party recognition is not required, but it would have been important in Bowen’s determination without the other qualifications.”

    What criteria the SoS takes into account is specified by CA election law. In fact, Barr did meet all or most of the criteria, as was clearly explained to me by a member of the SoS’ staff. It is worth noting that the SoS also placed several other minor party candidates on party ballots, regardless of their standing in their respective parties.

    The final statement – “… official Green Party recognition is not required, but it would have been important in Bowen’s determination without the other qualifications” – is not only 100% false, but troubling in its implication that it actually represents the SoS’ position. (Unless the author left out the word NOT, in which case, of course, I profusely apologize).

    For someone who claims to be concerned about following rules, one would think that mis-representing the CA SoS would be right up there among the most important.

    Regarding actions taken by the PCSC co-chair, Tom Yager: he acted in accordance with what members of the PCSC agreed to as a reasonable course of action on a committee conference call to which all but one individual had consensed. I explained my personal opinion, based on my own past electoral work, to the author: it is my belief that the candidate met the requirements for our recognition, because disclosure of funding sources would be made known at the next FEC publishing. Any request for an extra submission, outside of what was being asked of the other candidates, would constitute an arbitrary extra requirement – something those concerned about election law should understand as a serious hinderance to fair elections.

    • I told you when we spoke that I had already called the SoS, and was awaiting a return call. The representative did indeed call me back.

      Holly, contrary to your assertions to me, both on the phone and in this forum, that party recognition did not matter, a SoS staffer told me verbally that it is indeed a factor, and then further pointed to the pdf document to which I link. The staffer declined to specify the weight of that particular criteria, but I went to great pains to make crystal clear my question to the representative, asking the question a number of ways.

      The “other criteria” are as follows:

      a. Qualifying for federal matching funds,
      b. Appearing in presidential public opinion polls, candidates’ forums, or debates,
      c. Being on other states’ primary ballots as a presidential candidate,
      d. Actively campaigning in California for the presidency,
      e. Having a campaign office in California, and
      f. Advice and input from the chairs of the respective state parties

      Please correct me if I’m wrong– but none of these aside from f. applied to Barr prior to February 1.

      If party recognition wasn’t a factor, why then was it pursued?

      To address the conference call– the PCSC agreed on requiring an affidavit AND a donor list, neither of which were provided on February 1, or February 2 for that matter, when Yager made his certification.

      • Lauren: I did not mention whether you had spoken with the SoS or not. I knew you said you had tried to contact the office and had not gotten a response. The SoS staffer I spoke with told me clearly that it would not have been a factor – so it could well be possible that it was included into the mix, but alone or with addition of other items, it was not a deciding factor, period.

        Off the top of my head, I now that Barr had met at least 3 or 4 of the criteria. But my sense from the SoS office was that the media and publicity she had received was probably the factor with the greatest weight – once identified as a candidate seeking a party nomination, any SoS would be remiss in not including that person on a primary ballot. As I also explained to you, the SoS isn’t subservient to the GPUS/

        • I explain in the article that GPUS recognition wasn’t necessary for SoS recognition.

          However, the campaign pursued it…

          “Weinrib stressed to Everette and Yager that he wanted to gain national party recognition by Feb. 1 to make the Feb. 6 press release.”

          • Um – so? You wrote: “… official Green Party recognition is not required, but it would have been important in Bowen’s determination without the other qualifications.”

            You first stated Barr had met “none” of the “other ‘requirements’” (she met at least four, plus at least one mentioned; the word “requirements” is somewhat misleading), you then write – either that Barr did meet other “requirements,” but had she not, GPUS recognition would still have qualified her for the primary ballot; or, that she did not meet any/most other qualifications, and that GPUS recognition was the deciding factor. Neither is true.

      • To address a couple of Lauren’s other points:

        The PCSC members on the referenced conference call did not agree that we had to have an affidavit *and* donor list immediately. All but one agreed that the affidavit served the purpose well enough, and agreed that Tom Yager had to act on the side of inclusion. The very real, legitimate concern *must* favor inclusion. Further, adding extra steps for one candidate and not others amounts to creating exclusionary practices. That’s against the law in (at least) most states.

        Considering the affidavit put the campaign on the line, as an affidavit is a sworn statement as to the veracity of someone’s statement or information, and the fact the the donors would be made known in the near future, there was no reason to speculate that the campaign was not being truthful.

        The campaign was honest, as we now know from the FEC publication of the donors.

        Trying to exclude a legitimate candidate from a primary ballot is tampering with the vote, and illegal in many states. I suspect CA is one of them.

        Lauren has yet to make clear why she is so bent on trying to prove wrongdoing on the part of the Barr campaign. She told me she is, in fact, a Barr supporter, wanted to write the article about “the controversy” – largely the fabrication of a couple individuals – yet also claims she is concerned about transparency. We’ve now see the Barr campaign wasn’t lying. CA voters will, appropriately, have the chance to weigh in in the primary.

        • From Yager’s own words in his report to the National Committee:

          “The idea that came about was that the $5,000 requirement could be
          verified either via the FEC or through an affidavit, where the
          affidavit listed the committee name, bank, and donor information at
          least up to $5,000. The people on the call agreed that this approach
          would be satisfactory.”

          • You avoid critical points: those on the PCSC conference call agreed that we wanted the affidavit and donor list. We *also* agreed that the affidavit was sufficient for the immediate moment, given that the donor list would shortly be made public. And once again, I’ll remind you of the more serious concern you didn’t mention, the ethics of in- and exclusion. This can have legal consequences, as well as being a principle Greens should uphold. Ironic that Greens should complain about voter choice when it runs counter to a decision by one of the nation’s fairer secretaries of state.

      • Lauren, allow me to state this yet again, since you had not an answer.

        “”I would enjoy seeing for myself the correspondence from the Secretary that indicates clearly how the ‘recognition’ of a working group of the National Committee had influenced his decision to place Roseanne on the ballot.”

        I won’t hold my breath.

        • It’s a good thing I haven’t been holding my breath.

          No answer to this shall be forthcoming. Sanda Everett might wish to pay attention to that given how she seems so very confused about the matter.

      • You wrote that SOS “would determine that advocacy based primarily on six criteria, including input from state parties (extended to the national party).” California law makes no reference to national party. Moreover, California law does in no way specify that determination of “generally advocated for or recognized” must even be marginally based upon the six criteria, but rather that said criteria may be used for this purpose and that criteria for said determination are by no means limited to said six. You failed to note how the one criterion specified in law as a requirement in such determination is FEC qualification – which no one contests she met.

        • So, now you’re telling me the FEC is in the pocket of big Roseanne Barr business too?! will it never end!!! We must overthrow these established forces of tyranny threw the proper use of commenting! Long live the people, long live the resistance to the FEC!

    • You should be more careful Holly! Now that you have thanked GPW they will control the world. You may not notice it at first, but someday, when you are in a GPW concentration camp despite being such a toady, you will regret it.

      • Also, keep in mind here, that just because Holly was on the PCSC call doesn’t mean she actually knows what her opinion as a member of that committee was. I think it is possible she may have pulled the wool over her own eyes in terms of what her real motive was. As a member of the committee I see no reason why we should be compelled to assume she knew the motives of the committee. People lie to themselves all the time, unless they disagree with the PCSC, of course.

        • Well, Monte may have a point, because on that call I was starting to go into caffein&chocolate withdrawal. But since I wrote my earlier comments, others who were on the call have verified my account, so I must have been sentient enough to accurately recall the discussion.

          Actually the idea of being incarcerated by the GPW doesn’t sound a that bad – my idea is more of an Eco-Village, where I could sit around all day and read GPW and pull weeds from my local-produce garden plot and play my recorders. Great idea, Monte…….

  9. The Barr Presidential campaign conducts its activities with the highest ethical commitment and abides by all laws, regulations, and rules of the Federal Election Commission and the Green Party US.

  10. The article is typical of articles and other writings by people with unstated agendas. I’ve seen enough of them over the years in which I’ve known all the real details first hand, where the writer actually has only some of the facts and details. I have minutely studied them, and have found them to have distinct patterns. This article has those patterns. I won’t go into detail here as it would make this comment too lengthy, but I have written about it many times before The writer of this article has only been Green a few months and hasn’t had the time to learn what seasoned Greens have cut their teeth on, most notably the rabid majority politics of this country and the fights we are up against to achieve even the most basic of democratic and political inclusion–to appear on the ballot.

    Greens are critical readers and don’t generally fall for this type of recognizable spurious writing. It is not honest writing, and I have no respect for it. My very first thought on reading it was that Lauren was recruited to join the Green Party to write it and cause problems inside the Green Party and to cast negativity on one of our great women candidates and some Green Party leaders. I concur with Holly’s comments 100%, because I’ve been following the candidacy since the beginning inside the Green Party. We have two great Green Party recognized women candidates. Both are incredible women who are capable of drawing very different segments of the population, both of which we need. They both deliver our message beautifully, and, again, differently. Kat’s comments are also on target as are others.

    Lauren, I welcome you to the Green Party. If you really want to know what it’s about, to know what it is to be Green, to know what it means to really work to transform politics in this country to what will support people and our environment, I would urge you to not feel you have to jump in to write things that you don’t know about. Take some time, a lot of time, to learn. You haven’t. And that’s why everyone sees thoroughly through what you’ve written. Do the on-the-ground work for a few years. Find out first hand through the work and through the other Greens who sweat it out with you. I have a good place for you to do that. Go to Georgia and help them in their petition drive to get ballot access for the Green Party. You will find out what impossible is. And if you really get into it, you will find something in you that will not accept it as impossible. See how many signatures you can get, day in day out. You will be a different person when it’s over.

    Anyhow, good luck with writing something that could help us advance closer to our goals and support the incredible Greens who work so hard, sacrifice so much for no compensation, instead of writing articles that do nothing to move us forward.

    To compare Greens to politicians of other parties is just so off the mark. Congress is 100% corrupt and on the take, and it is so widespread throughout government and the two parties. To compare that with Greens who don’t make one cent from their work and who work harder in a day than anyone in the republican and democratic parties work in a year is not constructive and plainly a false comparison.

    Go Roseanne! Go Jill! Go Greens!! Go to Georgia Lauren!!!

    • Wise words!

      • Yeah, I loved it, too. I have tears in my eyes from laughing. I saw Roseanne and Jill, yesterday, during our first “debate” together.

        I am a candidate, with a doctorate and steel-toed working boots, and party experience. I am broken-hearted to say I have many, MANY stories to tell about under-mining behaviour in Green presidential races. The rules excluding me have been hard-and-fast, and the rules including others have been warm and fuzzy. From this view-point, at this moment, it looks like it’s all about money: the last PCSC requirement. My votes count, BTW, and I welcome party support. At last.

    • We have certainly had our differences.

      You continue, however, to have my respect.

    • While I often may not sound like I support anyone, and have not held back in my sarcasm about this article, I welcome you too Lauren. I mean this wholeheartedly, it is important that newbies understand they do not need the approval of long time greens and movers and shakers to be an effective part of the team. As individuals frequently with roots in opposition politics, we are often far too combative and can easily lose sight temporarily of our common goals and efforts. Whether you feel welcomed or not, to be an effective party activist one must have persistance and develop a tough hide. I welcome all, whether I agree with you or not, to make this your party. Don’t let others tell you you are not a REAL green. If you are down with significant chunks of our platform it is YOUR job to make this party what YOU think is really green, right, proper, and sustainable.

  11. I kind of agree with Holly in having this sort of thing out there will expose it to more scrutiny than keeping this behind the scenes. I do kind of worry that some folks might believe there is some truth to what it said, but it seems pretty clear the intent, and value (little) of it.

    I do think the title of the posting is really off mark, as I had to read though the majority of the post to realize that it really had little to do with “Co-Opting” of the Green Party.

  12. Back in February (the 14th), a member of the Occupy LA Media team announced on the googlegroup that she had spoken with Roseanne Barr, who had agreed to do interviews with us via Skype and also in studio– I am a member of the Occupy LA Media team… You can view my work at OccupyLosAngeles.org and LadyLibertine.net. Videos on YouTube channel laurenwindsor27.

    It was pseudo-controversial on the e-mail string, and stoked my curiosity—around the same time, by happenstance, Barr replied to a tweet of mine about a Breitbart associate I encountered at CPAC in Washington, DC. I pursued this article because I believed there to be a larger point to make about progressive movements like Occupy and the Green Party, which elevate the principles of transparency and accountability.

    It arose largely from my own frustration within Occupy, with people who were constantly chirping about ‘co-option.’ I agree with many of Barr’s views, and would love to see her as a legitimate candidate, but I felt like the very people opposed to co-option were blatantly star-f***ing. Excuse my language. So, according to these people, not okay to associate with AFL-CIO because of co-option, but okay to associate with Barr because of the publicity that could come from it. To me, it’s okay to associate with either in the name of coalition-building, so long as we are not officially endorsing their views or actions without consensus.

    Upon researching and seeing that there was parallel activity within the Green Party, I felt as though there was a story to be told. At the end of the day, I’m a journalist and a political junkie, and I felt the story was newsworthy.

    • Thanks.

      I think its worth mentioning that we live in a country with an extremely distorted political system which makes it almost impossible for a small party to grow. The Green Party has grown because of public figures. In NY the Greens got ballot status initially because the Grandfather from the Munsters, Al Lewis, a socialist, ran as governor in the 90s. But because of that, today, Howie Hawkins was able to again get that party on the ballot, and now we have young people in Central NY running for office as Greens, who might never have done so otherwise.

      I agree about concerns about co-opting and people’s biased emotional responses to stars, but I see these as growing pains of any movement trying to do *anything* within a system as fascist as ours. The deck is deeply stacked against all of us.

      Nonetheless, it’s always important to bring facts out to move our movements forward and keep our principles in place.

    • well see, now here’s a different story.

      cooption is when someone takes your ideas, uses them, and then f*ucks you by destroying your movement, providing only lip service, etc. because they have their own agenda and it isn’t yours, they just want to use you to push theirs. This is what AFL-CIO has done in my experience. Just like Sierra Club, Clean Water Action, League of Conservation Voters – they want to spread their work to your membership, but don’t reciprocate. co-option. the environmental groups listed play beltway pollitics at the expense of our environment and at least one has publicly slandered us in TX and lied outright about their involvement with us (none, but they claim to have supported our caniddates – i’ve known all our candidates and can tell you it’s a lie).

      what Barr did, a long-time friend of McKinney who jumped through the same hoops I did in 2008 unlike Nader), was say, yeah Greens are on the same page as me and I want to bring my following into the movement and spread their movement to my following. That is not cooption. That is smart.

    • Thanks for the background/motivation behind the article.

      • I too applaud these motives, but I feel Holly did a good job of explaining what is wrong with the result. Even when you are an insider, it can be hard to see through everyone else’s spin, but I think it is not a good answer to hold on to an untenable position. Important mistakes were made in stating that none of the conditions had been met, and not stating that PCSC precedents were met. The biggest problem with the issues of co-option and trasnparency within the best parts of the movement often is that individuals see these things differently. Frequently the worst offenders against these principles most frequently refer to them. The same is true of infiltration, ignoring it won’t go away, but it’s primary goal and result is that one spends too much effort censoring oneself and others and thinking about it at all. In fact, one of the most effective tactics of the obstructionist is to accuse others of obstruction whenever they resist such efforts. Infiltrators are enabled by frequent accusations of infiltration, but knowledge itself, and open discussion, is not on their side. There are several key issues like these where nothing can replace frankness and reason, and that is why real transparency is so important. Disinformation in the name of transparency is not so much. Your co-option is equal to my loyalty to staunch allies, and vice-versa. As Lauren stated, on these things consensus should rule. We should spend more energy on more effective, permanent, and ongoing means of discussion, polling, and seeking, of real consensus in real time; then such reporting would not be needed.

  13. I don’t think anyone is questioning the Barr Campaign’s integrity. What is at question is whether the PSC followed the rules for candidate recognition.

    • “many question her motives”

      “ploy for comeback publicity”

      “no stranger to high profile PR debacles”

      “concerns over behavior like this”

      “problems with transparency and accountability are ironic coming from Barr”

      “To her credit”

    • Unfortunately it requires a careful reading of these comments to find out that it is the precedent, the norm, for the PCSC to expect the still pending FEC filing to be sufficient motive behind honesty towards supporting the claim.

  14. I think its wrong to focus discussion on the author or the publisher of this piece. This is not like Counterpunch, which writes about personal disagreements within the party, this is a piece attempting to document an event which may expose a flaw in our process, and I wouldn’t be at all surprised if much of it is true.

    We are a party of volunteers, most all of us doing the best we can with what free time we have.

    A discussion should be focused on ways to improve the process and the method within the party, not the writer or any one person within the party.

    • Thanks for bringing us back to the heart of the matterf, Vic.

      These self-centered, self-flagellating tendencies and snarky remarks are eating everyone.

  15. Lauren,
    After so many years of white males running & becoming president in the USA, and then one who is 1/2 white 1/2 black. Wouldn’t it be refreshing to have a woman, for a change?
    Being that you are a civil libertarian, I hope that you agree. This country represents so many great things to so many with our Bill of Rights that it’d be a shame to keep letting that document get parsed away by corporate powers seeking more & more control.
    When you see the worst coruption of all to focus on, I sincerely hope that you look to what Wall Street & the American Petroleum Institute (among others) have done to our liberty’s.

  16. The article is an OBVIOUS put-up job by Michael Feinstein, and carried out by a hack of whom no one has even RAISED the key question — so much for GP members being “critical readers” :

    How is it possible that this “civil libertarian” and allegedly new member of the GP WAS ABLE TO GET ALL OF THIS DETAILED INFORMATION ???

    Does this not seem STRANGE ???

    What made her decide to pursue such a topic ??? And WHO provided so much — abstruse and DETAILED — information to her ???

    The IRRELEVANCE of the GP, in California and nationally, is made perfectly clear by the fact of this nonsensical article – and then the pettifogging discussion that followed … WHAT A WASTE OF TIME AND ENERGY …

    And, Lauren, if you want to talk about TRANSPARENCY and ACCOUNTABILITY, why don’t you do a piece on the MULTIPLE POSITIONS OF POWER — at county / state / national levels — of your “capo di capos”, Michael Corleone, er, Feinstein ???

    THAT would be an interesting piece … but I doubt you have any REAL interest in TRANSPARENCY and ACCOUNTABILITY …

    • David, I think you may underestimate the insight of most Greens who have been involved for some time! Most will (wisely) ignore stuff like this. I think GPW did the right thing in publishing this, to let folks see this nonsense, and give people a chance to correct the record, if they care to do so.

      How did she get such detailed information? She made a lot of it up. If there were ay real story here, real media – MSM or alternative- would have been all over it.

    • There’s a red under every bed, but they aren’t all Mike.
      The thing that bothers me most about those who would resist his tactics is that they tend to overestimate the power of such tactics.
      The same may well be said of all those who think they are in charge of anything.

      Those who conspire most successfully to rule the world absolutly know full well there is no such thing as real raw political power, except for the power of the people united. In a similar fashion, such people, the powerful and disempowered alike, over-react to opposing powers that feel threatening.

      Wake yourself up, you are the only power that matters; the revolution is between your own ears. When one has won the battle in one’s own head one does not feel the need to inform others of who they are, one simply finds a way to work towards common goals.

      Great people discuss ideas.
      Average people discuss events.
      Small minded people discuss people.
      (There is actually no proof who said this first.)

      These relations go both ways, discussing individuals rather than concepts shrinks your experience of the envelope – discussing concepts, whether or not they refer to a given individual, expands the scope of the discussion.

      This article purports to to discuss an idea, but focusses on a given spin of events by certain people, as such it can well aspire to be soilidly average.

      These comments all too frequently discuss nothing but people.

      Mike is just another silly human, we all have foibles. Apparently he has the time and energy to make some of his very obvious (as do I). There is no reason for you and yours to participate, no one has any means to make Mike’s foibles a part of party methodolgy unless they want to act accordingly themselves.

      Great minds discuss ideas, but all kinds of minds are required to execute ideas that matter.

      The result of this is that all work of value involves interpersonal politics, and almost every community rewards the machinations of those who manipulate personal relations towards their own percieved ends well.

      When Sitting Bull sought to leave the reservation, first he went to the campfires of his own band, then to those of his tribal rivals. In two seperate rounds at each of the three levels of his nation’s organization he first went to make things right with individuals, then to refine the proposal, before doing the third round to seek consensus. It took him months to mobilize a good portion of his nation.

      We have organized the party in such a way that the closest approximation of this is found in whoever keeps a good phone and email address list, and works it well.
      This is not transparency, and it is not consensual, but it has been decided that it is the current best approximation.

      It is time we changed this, and Mike should get the praise he deserves for showing us all how things are done, and how important it is that we find a more inclusive way.

    • and thanks for sending me looking for the origin of “pettifogging”, you led me to a great new source http://www.worldwidewords.org/weirdwords/ww-pet3.htm

  17. QUOTE, Lauren Windsor:

    “To her credit, Barr gave a compelling speech any liberal would love at the Rally in the Valley.”
    __________________

    Pleasing liberals is a job for the corporate party’s Democrat faction (and its wholly owned subsidiaries, like the Working Families Party)… not something any actual political alternative would seek to do.

    Any political alternative that seeks to please America’s liberals — who for generation upon generation have been resolutely dedicated to ensuring that either none or the least possible change for good occurs — is a political “alternative” with no **GOOD** purpose to exist.

    Nothing could please the corporate party’s (D) dedicated liberals more than having clowns occupying the Green Party’s ballot line.

    The Devolution of Liberalism:

    http://chenangogreens.org/home/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=496&Itemid=1

  18. This article is shit. The author has an agenda.

    The Green Party fucks itself once again.

    :D

    • Masturbation has it’s value, but it isn’t a good primary focus.
      The only one who can choose what you focus on is yourself.

  19. One question overlooked almost completely in this comment thread…why would Marnie Glickman’s “Green Party Watch” web site even publish such a misleading, disgusting and poorly-written (boring even…) hit piece on a fellow Green candidate in the first place?

    Is she helping our Green Party (as she is paid to do) by doing so?…or bringing disgrace to our newly-establshed office of “Executive Director of the GPCA?”

    Marnie totally embarrassed our party at the Rally in the Valley for Roseanne by introducing herslef by name and title and then asking a Roseanne what she (Marnie) thought was a really great “gotcha” question, but that instead was viewed by all present as merely a snarky bit of bitchiness that was conduct unbecoming for our state party Executive Director, and behaviour that should never be allowed for a paid executive like Marnie Glickman.

    When you think about all the volunteer hours we Greens put in to build our party, just to have Marnie’s in-person comments and her web site tear it down again…and then get paid by Greens to do it!…How outrageous is that?

    It’s time for Mob Boss Feinstein, and his operatives, Sanda Evertte, Marnie Glickman, Jack Lindblad and Sasha Karlik to stop attacking and libeling their fellow Greens and to stop destroying our party from within with their Centralized Power.

    We are dealing with very sick minds here…so we must be careful. They are delusional to the point that they can actually justify their actions, believeing they are doing what is good and right…which means that they are very dangerous to the health of our party, and like a cancer growing within…must be surgically removed from our party before they do more harm.

    We are about to lose ballot access in California because of their “leadership” and that will be a blow to the Green Party that we may not recover from. There are national implications for their destructive actions such as this repulsive “hit” piece.

    Look at Feinstein’s proposal for the upcoming GPCA Assembly…the one that changes the bylaws to make all Coordinating Committee members “at-large” members, (Feinstein-chosen?)and eliminating the current requirements to have county reps from all active counties on the committee…look at that proposal and you’ll see how dangerous they are to our Green Party both as a group and as twisted individuals with the unlimited resources of a true 1%’er.

    • Michael, I think you may be thinking of Green Change (a Green social network). Green Party Watch is not a Marnie Glickman production.

      Imo, GPW has provided a reliable and well-managed blog giving us a little higher profile and offering a place to find the latest GP news. I think GPW did the right thing in publishing this “article.” I suspect they had no doubt that most readers would see what a sham this is, thereby helping to out this effort and giving people a means of responding/correcting/smacking down this nonsense.

    • “Marnie’s”???
      um, don’t know where to start with that one, but I’m pretty sure it’s off the deeper end.