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Ohio Greens call for resignation of Cuyahoga County prosecutor

ohioThe Ohio Green Party and the Cuyahoga County Green Party are calling for the resignation of Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Timothy McGinty in the wake of a grand jury’s decision not to indict Cleveland police officers involved in the shooting death of 12-year-old Tamir Rice in 2014.

The Ohio Greens said in a release, “Mr. McGinty has failed in his role as County Prosecutor and the entire Grand Jury process was suspect from the beginning. We also call for the firing of officers Timothy Loehmann and Frank Garmback. Officer Loehmann, who fired the fatal shots, should never have been hired by the Cleveland Police Department in the first place,” after being rejected by several other Ohio police departments.

In related news, the Associated Press reports that the Ohio Greens announced that the party will select its choice for the Green Party presidential nomination on April 3. The Greens “secured minor party status in Ohio in 2014 when their gubernatorial candidate, Anita Rios, received 3 percent of the vote.”

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2014 campaigns highlight growing diversity of Green Party

Green Party campaigns in 2014 made a splash, from Howie Hawkins’ historic result in New York to Gayle McLaughlin’s triumph over a Chevron-funded challenge in Richmond, CA. But another remarkable story is the growing diversity of the Green Party and the candidates who are its public face.

Respect for diversity has long been a key value of the Green Party US, but still, Greens have faced charges (from within and without) that the party and its candidates are disproportionately white and male. Yet it’s clear that as people of color are increasingly marginalized by the Democratic and Republican parties, more and more are finding a welcoming home with the Green Party.

p anita riosIn Ohio, Green gubernatorial candidate Anita Rios, a longtime advocate within the Green Party for Latino/Latina issues, earned nearly 100,000 votes for 3.3%, winning a ballot line for the Ohio Greens. In California, gubernatorial candidate Luis Rodriguez, a well-known Chicano activist and author, took 1.5% in the June “Top Two” primary, the top vote-getter outside the Democratic and Republican parties. The Texas Greens’ slate included Emily “Spicy Brown” Sanchez for US Senate, Antonio Diaz for US House, and Martina Salinas for Railroad Commissioner. The Tennessee Greens’ gubernatorial candidate Isa Infante was born in the Dominican Republic. In New York, Attorney General candidate Ramon Jimenez is a “people’s attorney” from the Bronx, and Daniel Vila Rivera took over 10% of the vote for US House.

p brian jones headshotAfrican-American Greens made their impact felt too. In New York, Howie Hawkins’ running mate Brian Jones was crucial to mobilizing NYC activists for the Green Party. Eugene Puryear ran the most dynamic city council race the DC Statehood Green Party has seen in years, building the DCSGP for future success. In St. Paul, Lena Buggs’ run for state representative showed that the Greens are fast overtaking the GOP as the Twin Cities’ second party. Glenn Davis, a veteran and colleague of Cheri Honkala, helped the Greens do the same in Philadelphia. In Oakland, the Greens nominated Jason Anderson, a veteran, artist, and activist, for mayor. And in Texas, the Greens ran Jamar Osborne for Attorney General.

p skip sandmanOne of the most talked-about Green congressional campaigns in 2014 was that of Ray “Skip” Sandman in Minnesota’s 8th district. Skip Sandman is an elder in the Fond du Lac band of Ojibwe, and drew widespread attention for his stand against an ecologically devastating sulfide mining project in the Duluth area (which Democratic incumbent Rick Nolan continues to support). Sandman’s call to protect the water for future generations garnered admiration from Greens across the US, as well as 4.3% of the vote in a hotly contested congressional race. Shortly after Democrat Nolan’s re-election, he voted in favor of the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline.

p keiko bonkAlso deserving of special mention is Keiko Bonk, who challenged Hawai’i’s speaker of the house with a run for state representative. A Japanese-American, Keiko Bonk became the first Green elected to partisan office in the United States when she won election to the Hawai’i County Council in 1992. While she wasn’t able to unseat the speaker, Bonk did win 23.3% of the vote, beating a Republican into 3rd place.

These are only some of the candidates showing the growing diversity of the Green Party – there are many other Green candidates, not to mention activists, who are defying the stereotype that all Greens are aging white men. However, Greens still have much work to do if they hope to create a welcoming political party for people of color, and turn the Green Party into a truly diverse multiracial coalition dedicated to winning liberty and justice for all.

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Green Party: Grant protected legal status for immigrants

p Green Party US new logoIn October, Green Party US put out the following statement on immigration:

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Green Party candidates and activists expressed alarm at President Obama’s dismissal of immigrants’ rights and apparent capitulation to the rhetoric of xenophobic Republican extremists.

Greens called for humane policies that recognize the basic rights of documented and undocumented immigrants and support an executive order to grant the latter protected legal status, amnesty, and an offer of citizenship.

The Obama Administration has deported more immigrants than any previous administration, with a record 438,421 deportations in 2013, 44% of which took place under “expedited removal orders” that denied court hearings. 96% of deportees are from Latino countries.

President Obama is now seeking $3.7 billion to fund “a sustained border security surge through enhanced domestic enforcement,” $40 million for air surveillance, and increased funding for drones for use against undocumented immigrants. Continue Reading

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Video: Green Party’s Anita Rios in Ohio Governor debate

Anita Rios

Anita Rios, Green Party candidate for Governor of Ohio

Ohio Green Party candidate for governor Anita Rios participated in a debate on 10/22 with her Democratic opponent Ed Fitzgerald. The Republican incumbent John Kasich refuses to debate. Rios, a Latina activist and longtime Green, can win ballot status for the Ohio Green Party if she earns at least 2% of the vote.

Watch the video from the City Club of Cleveland:

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Green for Greens: Anita Rios for Ohio Governor

Green For Greens is about highlighting some of the most exciting Green candidates across the United States – and asking our readers to contribute what they can to help these candidates succeed. We are committed to building a party of peace, justice, democracy and ecology, free of corporate money and control, and the best way to do that is by supporting the courageous candidates who are spreading our message and building our party every day.

Anita Rios

Anita Rios, Green Party candidate for Governor of Ohio

The Ohio Green Party is having a good year: first, the party overcame discriminatory ballot access laws to qualify Anita Rios as its candidate for governor by getting hundreds of write-in votes for Rios in the primary. Now, a series of scandals that has rocked Democratic candidate Ed Fitzgerald’s campaign is inspiring many voters to seek an alternative.

As the third choice for governor on Ohio’s ballot, Anita Rios is getting attention for her unapologetically progressive positions. She will debate Democrat Fitzgerald in Cleveland on Wednesday October 22  (Republican incumbent John Kasich is refusing to debate). Media outlets across the state are featuring her positions on the issues.

If Anita Rios gets at least 2% of the vote in November, the Ohio Green Party will maintain its hard-won ballot status. Contribute to Anita Rios’ campaign today to help the Ohio Greens keep growing!

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Anita Rios offers Green alternative in Ohio Governor race

Anita Rios

From the Toledo Blade:

COLUMBUS — Anita Rios has watched from a distance as the Democratic candidate for governor has seen his campaign flounder and wondered whether this could create an opening for her.

The woman from Toledo’s Old West End has more than a stake in the race. She’s the third option on Ohio’s Nov. 4 ballot on the Green Party ticket along with Republican Gov. John Kasich and Democratic challenger Ed FitzGerald. Continue Reading

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Ohio Green Party nominates Latina activist Anita Rios for Governor

Anita RiosFrom Rios For Governor:

TOLEDO, OH – On Tuesday night, Latina activist Anita Rios achieved enough votes in the Green Party primary to receive that party’s nomination for Governor. With Charlie Earl of the Libertarian Party off the ballot, Rios stands to be the only third-party candidate for Governor on the ballot in November. President of the Ohio National Organization for Women, Rios says she is running because “the insights of ordinary people are absent in politics.”

She is joined on the ticket by candidate for Lieutenant Governor, Columbus-area professor and lawyer Bob Fitrakis. Fitrakis acted as her attorney in 2004 when she filed suit against then-Secretary of State Ken Blackwell to demand a state-wide recount following the Presidential election.

“Neither major party has done enough to defend women, workers, and the natural resources that we depend on. It’s time to stand up and declare that an economy which generates low-wage part-time jobs over living-wage jobs is not acceptable.” Continue Reading

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Ohio Greens aim to get on November ballot via write-in primary campaign

p anita riosFrom the Cleveland Plain Dealer:

Two Libertarian Party candidates, including the party’s chairman, and a team from the Green Party have qualified as write-in candidates for the statewide primary election with the hope of reaching the November ballot.

The Green Party’s Anita Rios and Bob Fitrakis filed as write-ins for the gubernatorial race. Rios is the candidate for governor, while Fitrakis is her lieutenant governor running mate. Rios, of Toledo, previously has run for local offices in that city and for U.S. Senate in 2012. Fitrakis, from Columbus, ran as a Green Party candidate for governor in 2006 and for Congress in 2012…

These candidates will have to reach a 500 vote threshold to qualify for the November ballot, said Matt McClellan, Husted’s press secretary.

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Ohio Green Nestor announces run for Toledo City Council

From the Toledo Free Press:

Sean Nestor has worked in IT since he was 18 years old. He finds solutions to people’s problems for a living. But the Point Place resident hopes to begin tackling some much larger issues in the City of Toledo.

Nestor is vying for a seat on Toledo City Council this fall and thinks his IT background will come in handy at One Government Center.

“IT is very service-oriented, and people have concerns about things that are more complex than they are able to really deal with,” Nestor said. “They come to somebody who’s an expert or who is well versed in a matter and say, ‘Hey, I have this problem. How can we get this fixed?’ From what I’ve observed about city politics, that’s often the case, with city council being a very service-oriented position.”

But Nestor says there is something other than IT that makes him qualified to be a councilperson. Continue Reading

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Ohio Green Party fields 2 US Senate candidates

From the Toledo Free Press:

Running for any seat in the Green Party is more like an obstacle course than a race.

First, you need to gather signatures to appear on the ballot. That number depends on what the desired seat is, but for the U.S. Senate election you’d need at least 500. (Major parties need at least 1,000.) If anyone signed a petition in a county where they are not registered, they don’t count. Current and previous addresses rule others out. And if some print their names rather than signing it, their names are disqualified, too.

“What most people don’t realize when you’re a minor party is that every election cycle,  you’re under a threat because the two major parties don’t want us to participate,” said Anita Rios, co-chair of the Green Party of Ohio and one of the candidates for U.S. Senate. She and Bowling Green resident Joe DeMare know this all too well.

Read the full article at the Toledo Free Press.