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New York Greens celebrate fracking ban, credit grassroots movement

p greens demand fracking banYesterday it was widely reported that New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has agreed to ban fracking after a state environmental review found that the gas drilling method cannot be employed without unacceptable risk to public health and the environment. This decision comes after Green Party gubernatorial candidate Howie Hawkins, who advocated for a fracking ban, took nearly 5% of the vote in the 2014 election. This significant turnaround by the Cuomo administration, which announced plans in 2012 to introduce fracking in New York’s Southern Tier, comes after years of unrelenting pressure from community activists, including Greens across New York.

From the New York Green Party:

The Green Party of New York (GPNY) and its recent gubernatorial candidate Howie Hawkins join the chorus of New Yorkers celebrating what appears to be an imminent fracking ban, arising from today’s reports from Environmental Conservation Commissioner Joe Martens and Acting Health Commissioner Howard Zucker.

p howie hawkins“This news is a victory for all New Yorkers who have dedicated their lives for the past six years to keep fracking out of New York,” said Howie Hawkins, 2014 Green candidate for Governor. Hawkins ran in 2010 and 2014 on a strong anti-fracking platform and confronted Cuomo about the issue during the October 2014 gubernatorial debate in Buffalo. “Together, we have won more than just a ban – today, we have a strong movement that must now use our people power to win the transition to 100% renewable energy for New York by 2030 in order to fight climate change.” Continue Reading

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Who does the Working Families Party work for?

Andrew CuomoThe Working Families Party, which began in New York and has attempted to spread to other states, stirred up considerable controversy in 2014 by supporting Andrew Cuomo’s re-election campaign for New York Governor. Cuomo has done much to anger New York progressives, including breaking a promise to support independent redistricting and vowing to fight labor unions in his second term.

The Working Families Party’s decision to endorse Cuomo a second time has raised questions about their strategy of urging progressives to vote for right-wing Democrats like Cuomo, as well as possible links between this strategy and the WFP’s sources of funding.

From In These Times, “Andrew Cuomo and the Sad State of the Working Families Party”:

To demonstrate the party’s weakness, one need only look at how far out of its way the WFP went to win voters by not mentioning the candidate at the top of the ticket. Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union (RWDSU) President Stuart Appelbaum on his Facebook simply said that he was voting for “Governor of New York” on the party line—no mention of who that governor was. Party mailers featured not an image of the governor but of New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, whose plan for progressive taxation to fund universal pre-kindergarten was thwarted by the fiscally conservative Cuomo.

And there are many reasons why the party couldn’t talk about him. Cuomo failed to make good on a central promise he made in exchange for the WFP endorsement: to push for Democrats to regain control in New York’s State Senate.

Continue Reading

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Howie Hawkins: America just took a wrong turn, it’s time to take a hard left

Howie Hawkins, 2014 NY Green Party gubernatorial candidate, writes in The Guardian:

America just took a wrong turn. It’s time to take a hard left

Double down on oil and trouble? Not so fast: fracking bans in oil country and common sense on infrastructure might turn the US a deeper shade of green between now and 2016

p howie hawkins carSometimes it feels as if Sarah Palin won the last two presidential elections. We’re not quite living in “Drill Baby Drill” America, but by co-opting the other Republican energy slogan, a meaningless plan literally called “All-of-the-Above”, President Obama has opened up vast new areas to offshore drilling and pushed hydrofracking for oil and gas onshore. Even as the president says that “we are closer to energy independence than we’ve ever been before”, sometimes it seems like the US is becoming a repressive petrostate.

And then some days, like the day after the midterm elections, it feels like a complete victory for Palinite politics. The Republicans took back the US Senate, and the only Democrats who won major races were those like Andrew Cuomo, who defeated my Green Party campaign for governor of New York with a $45m campaign war chest provided by a few hundred super-rich donors – Democratic and Republican ones.

But there were real victories this week for progressive alternatives on clean energy, economic security and social justice. The extremist blood bath may have painted the country more red, but there were more than a few important – and extremely promising – tea leaves of green. It was even enough to suggest a new, independent, hard-left turn in American politics is still very much possible. Continue Reading

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Howie Hawkins for NY Governor debate video and new TV ad

p howie hawkins ny governor debateHowie Hawkins, the Green Party candidate for Governor of New York, is making huge strides in what is quickly becoming the most exciting progressive campaign of 2014. On Wednesday October 22, Hawkins took part in a televised debate in Buffalo with incumbent Democrat Andrew Cuomo, Republican Rob Astorino, and Libertarian Michael McDermott. In a PBS poll of debate watchers (that has, unfortunately, disappeared since the night of the debate) roughly 80% of respondents said that Hawkins won the debate.

Watch a video of Howie Hawkins’ responses in the NY 2014 gubernatorial debate here:

And watch Howie Hawkins’ new 30-second TV ad, running between now and election day:

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Green Party’s Howie Hawkins in livestreamed NY Governor’s debate Weds 10/22

p howie hawkins debateIn one of the most exciting Green campaigns of 2014, Howie Hawkins, the New York Green Party’s candidate for governor, will take part in a televised (and livestreamed) debate with his opponents on Wednesday, October 22nd at 8pm Eastern time. Despite having a tiny fraction of the money and media attention of his opponents, Hawkins has surged to 9% in statewide polls and has passed the Republican candidate in some areas. In fact, his poll numbers are similar to Jesse Ventura’s before a strong showing in debates propelled him to win the 1998 Minnesota gubernatorial election.

From Howie Hawkins for NY Governor:

Howie takes on Gov 1% in the ONLY televised debate of this campaign season! Wednesday at 8pm. Please spread the word to your friends that there’s a debate happening – Cuomo has been keeping a low profile and we hear the NYC media is barely aware that this is happening.

Watch it livestreamed here: http://www.buffalonews.com/ and on these PBS affiliates: WNED Buffalo · WMHT Albany · WSKG Binghamton · WCNY Syracuse · WPBS Watertown · WXXI Rochester · MLPBS Plattsburgh · WNET New York City – Channel 13

The Hawkins campaign has also created a facebook event page for the debate – click here to RSVP and invite friends.

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Jill Stein: Support a breakthrough campaign in New York!

p howie hawkins jill stein brian jonesFrom Jill Stein and Green Party US:

We hope you will support one of the Green Party’s most exciting and important races in 2014 – Howie Hawkins for Governor of New York.www.howiehawkins.org

People and planet before profits. New York leads the country in income disparity and segregation of schools and housing by race and class. Howie’s campaign is focused on climate action, jobs, education reform, criminal justice reform, civil rights, and an end to corruption. It has been profiled as one of the cutting edge third party campaigns combining an ecological and economic justice agenda.

Four years ago Howie surpassed the 50,000 vote threshold needed for the Greens to regain official party status. Due to his 3rd place finish out of seven candidates and recent close losses for local office in Syracuse, the media is taking him and the Green Party far more seriously this time.

Howie has been polling at 7% and has generated hundreds of news stories in his efforts to oppose the economic austerity agenda of Andrew Cuomo. Three other polls have shown that an independent progressive challenger to Cuomo would receive between 22% and 24%, equal to the Republican and only 13 to 15 percentage points behind Cuomo.

If we can get the word out to New York voters that Howie is the only progressive on the general election ballot, we can establish the Green Party in New York as the third major party and the voice of progressives who are independent of the corporate oligarchy and its representatives in the Democratic and Republican parties.

That kind of result will help Greens across the country be taken seriously as the progressive alternative to corporate politics. Continue Reading

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Hawkins: Cuomo’s weakness in primary is good news for NY Green Party

p howie hawkinsFrom the Syracuse Post-Standard:

Howie Hawkins wants Zephyr Teachout voters — both progressives and conservatives who are frustrated with Gov. Andrew Cuomo — to consider the Green Party in November.

Hawkins, of Syracuse, says his platform to shift the tax burden to wealthy New Yorkers, fight against hydrofracking and impose a higher minimum wage should appeal to most of the 180,000 voters who supported Teachout on Tuesday.

“I’m the the anti-Cuomo vote,” Hawkins said. “If that was a progressive vote, I’m the last one on the ballot.”

Read the full story at the Syracuse Post-Standard.

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Hawkins, Jones, Jimenez call for a Green New Deal for New York

p brian jones ramon jimenez labor dayFrom Howie Hawkins for NY Governor:

Hawkins, Jones, Jimenez Call for a Green New Deal on Labor Day

$15 Minimum Wage, A Guaranteed Job, Health Care for All, Organizing Rights

Howie Hawkins, the Green Party candidate for Governor, said that as Governor he would unilaterally raise the state minimum wage to $15 an hour. “The raise will inject billions of dollars into the purchasing power of the state’s working class. That would be far more effective in stimulating the state’s economy than Governor Cuomo squandering public money on tax breaks for big business and the rich,” Hawkins said.

Hawkins also said that the state should guarantee every New Yorker a living wage job. He would create a public works program, as well as investing in transitioning the state’s energy system to 100% clean renewable energy by 2030.  A peer-reviewed study in the journal Energy Policy projects that such an energy program would create 4.5 million jobs. Jobs and training would be guaranteed to existing current workers in the fossil fuel and nuclear industries.

“If the private sector can’t provide a decent job to everyone who needs one, the public sector will. Rather than an unemployment office, we will have an employment office that provides jobs,” added Hawkins. Continue Reading

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Hawkins demands debate in NY gov race after rise in polls

p howie hawkinsThe Legislative Gazette in New York reports:

Howie Hawkins, the Green Party nominee for governor, renewed his call for debates after he rose to 7 percent in the latest NBC 4 New York/Wall Street Journal/Marist College poll released Tuesday.

Both Gov. Andrew Cuomo and his Republican challenger Rob Astorino dropped in the recent poll, the first after the Moreland Commission revelations in the new York Times broke on July 23.

“Voters have a right to hear where the candidates stand on the issues. I am facing two conservatives in the major parties who are out of touch with the needs and concerns of most voters. The more the voters hear about where the Green Party stands, the better I continue to do,” said Hawkins.

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MSNBC covers Hawkins campaign for NY Gov: “I can win this”

p howie hawkinsMSNBC recently covered Howie Hawkins’ campaign for NY Governor – here’s an excerpt from the article:

New Yorkers are hungry for an alternative to Cuomo, says Hawkins, who points to an April 2014 poll in which a generic nominee from the left-leaning Working Families Party (WFP) commanded 24% to Cuomo’s 39%.

“I think we’re the ticket that 24% is looking for,” Hawkins told msnbc. “They just haven’t found us yet. When they find us, we’ve got a real race.” Continue Reading