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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 highlights from Election Day 2014

From Green Party US:

Election results http://www.greenpartywatch.org/2014/11/04/green-party-2014-election-results and http://gp.org/election-wrapup

p hawkins for governor girlWASHINGTON, D.C. — The Green Party made several advances in the 2014 general election on November 4, with Green candidates winning 27 seats and ballot lines held for most state Green Parties.

The most closely watched Green races were in Richmond, California, where outgoing Mayor Gayle McLaughlin overcame a $3-million campaign by Chevron to defeat her slate, and New York, where Howie Hawkins challenged incumbent Gov. Andrew Cuomo. Continue Reading

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Green for Greens: Howie Hawkins for NY 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.

p hawkins for governor girlFrom Jill Stein:

Hold on to your hat! Howie’s polling is up 300%. NY is primed for a true progressive. And now Howie’s been invited to face off with Cuomo on live TV, in debates that will showcase the Green Party as the people’s voice that New Yorkers – and Americans everywhere – are looking for!

But to lift off, we need to get the word out, about Howie and the debates. And for that, we need your help. Now. No matter what state you live in.   Continue Reading

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Greens turn out in big numbers for People’s Climate March (pics & video)

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Jill Stein with Elizabeth May and her daughter

Green Party members and candidates from across the United States and Canada joined a large Green contingent in the People’s Climate March in New York City on September 21st.

Before the march began, volunteers in Howie Hawkins for NY Governor t-shirts worked the massive crowd, while past and present Green candidates including Jill Stein, Cheri Honkala, Elizabeth May (Canadian Green MP), Howie Hawkins, Brian Jones (Hawkins’ running mate), and Eugene Puryear (for DC City Council) fired up marchers at an impromptu rally.

p pcm NY GreensOver 150 Greens marched with Hawkins, Jones, and Ramon Jimenez (for NY Attorney General), chanting “We are unstoppable – a Green world is possible”, “We’re gonna beat back the frack attack”, “No more poison and pollution – we need a solar revolution”, and more, drawing cheers from the assembled crowd.

On the following day, Greens including Howie Hawkins joined the Flood Wall Street sit-in to protest the financial corporations that are funding the dirty energy behind climate change.

Below are videos from the People’s Climate March pre-rally, as well as an interview with Howie Hawkins at Flood Wall Street:

Thanks to Craig Seeman, Sanda Everette, and James Lane for the videos.

 

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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, 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 campaign responds to NY Working Families Party’s Cuomo endorsement

From Howie Hawkins and Brian Jones, Green Party candidates for New York Governor and Lt. Gov:

This weekend was a turning point. It’s never been clearer that the ONLY gubernatorial candidate who actually stands with working families throughout New York is Howie Hawkins. 

At the heart of our campaign is the struggle to defend and improve public education. Cuomo has made it clear that he supports the corporate privatization of our schools. That’s why Howie Hawkins asked Brian Jones, a long-time public school teacher and activist to be his running mate. As Howie said to a standing-room only crowd in New York City this weekend, “We don’t hesitate to challenge Cuomo, we’re ready for this fight.” Continue Reading

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New York Greens reach out to Working Families Party to beat Cuomo

p howie hawkins brian jonesNewsday reports:

ALBANY: New York’s Green Party is reaching out to the Working Families Party to explore a liberal coalition to defeat Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo. The rare overture reflects a growing dissatisfaction by some liberal leaders for Cuomo’s business tax cuts and spending reductions in his first term.

“We share opposition to the conservative economic, fiscal, educational, and environmental policies of Governor Cuomo,” states the letter signed by Green candidate for governor Howie Hawkins and his running mates. “We also share common progressive policy goals, including single payer health care, raising minimum wages, progressive tax reform, fully-funded public schools, tuition-free CUNY and SUNY, a ban on fracking, and building a carbon-free economy by 2030. It therefore makes sense that we should meet to discuss how we can work together for a united fight against the Cuomo agenda and for the policy goals we share,” the Green Party stated. Continue Reading

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Hawkins, Green for NY Gov, picks teacher as running mate

From Howie Hawkins for New York Governor:

p Brian JonesI am excited to let you know that Brian Jones has stepped up to run as the Green Party candidate for Lieutenant Governor.

Brian would not just balance the Green Party ticket. He will multiply it.

To be sure, balance is good. He’s downstate; I’m upstate. He’s a Teacher; I’m a Teamster. He’s black; I’m white. He’s younger; I’m older.

Brian brings a record of effective and significant organizing, speaking, and acting on the issue that I am hearing the most about from voters as I campaign around the state: public education.  Continue Reading