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Greens will take part in debates in AR, AZ, and MA. Where else?

Debates are incredibly important for Greens, anyone who supports Green candidates, and anyone who supports independent politics in general, for a number of reasons.

First of all, debates are watched by people across the political spectrum, so they offer a rare chance to publicize Green positions outside the usual echo chambers that politics has been boxed into (corporate media that only covers horse races, independent media outlets that cater to small self-selected audiences, Fox News and talk radio that serve as a megaphone for right-wing corporatist propaganda, etc). This ability to reach a general audience with a Green message not only attracts new people to vote for Green candidates and join the Green Party, it puts pressure on politicians of other parties to adopt Green positions that are popular. Conversely, when Greens are excluded from debates, many vital issues don’t get addressed at all: single-payer health care, runaway military spending, climate change, the failed war on drugs, corporate personhood, and the utter corruption of pay-to-play politics, to name but a few.

Secondly, watching (or attending/participating in) debates and inviting others to join you is an essential act of participating in a healthy democracy. It keeps you informed, open to new ideas, and aware of the crucial role of civil discourse in a pluralistic society.

Finally, there may be no better way to make a case for the Green Party than to actively demand that our candidates participate in the debates. Every time a qualified candidate is shut out from the debates, it makes a mockery of democracy – and people recognize that when it’s brought to their attention. The various mechanisms used by the political establishment to shut out independent voices and maintain the stranglehold of the corporate-sponsored political duopoly need to be exposed for what they are: a concerted attack on the right and freedom of Americans to choose their own government. Open debates activism is also an opportunity to build transpartisan alliances with Libertarians, Socialists, Constitutionalists, and other independents, which helps our pro-democracy message to reach a larger audience across ideological lines.

Right now, I know of a handful of broadcast debates in which Greens will participate. We need your help to find out about others: where Greens will be in the debates, and where they are planning actions aimed at getting in the debates. Such actions can be successful: Canadian Green Party leader Elizabeth May was included in a nationally televised debate after her supporters publicly protested her exclusion with letters, calls, and other activism. Even when our actions fail to get our candidates on the debate stage, they help open the eyes of our fellow citizens to what we are fighting for. So without further ado, here is a short list of upcoming debates to watch; please help me expand it by looking up debates/debate activism in your state and leaving information in the comments.

9/21 MA Governor debate with Jill Stein – 7 PM – WCVB-TV (Channel 5), WHDH-TV (Channel 7), WGBH-TV (Channel 2), New England Cable News (NECN), WBUR, WTTK-FM, WBZ-AM

9/26 AZ Senate debate with Jerry Joslyn – 6 PM – KTVK channel 3 in Phoenix, streamed at AZfamily.com

10/11 AR-1 House debate with Ken Adler – 6:30 PM – AETN

10/11 AR-2 House debate with Lewis Kennedy – 6:30 PM – AETN

10/12 AR Governor debate with Jim Lendall – 8 PM – AETN

10/12 CA Governor “eco-friendly” debate – Greens likely to protest exclusion at Dominican University in San Rafael

10/13 AR Senate debate with John Gray – 6:30 PM – AETN

10/13 AR-4 House debate with Joshua Drake – 8 PM – AETN

10/15 AR Attorney General debate with Rebekah Kennedy – 7:30 PM – AETN

10/26 MA Governor debate – Jill Stein must raise $100,000 by 10/1 to participate

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Arkansas Green Party nominates slate of candidates

The Arkansas Green Party nominated several candidates at its state convention on July 24th. The candidates include two former state representatives, Jim Lendall for Governor and Bobby Tullis for Treasurer, as well as Rebekah Kennedy for Attorney General, who earned over 20% of the vote for US Senate in 2008. Here is the list of candidates after the convention:

U.S. Senate – John Gray – – http://www.johngrayforussenate.com
Congress – District 1 – Ken Adler —  http://www.kenadlerforcongress.org
Congress District 2 – Lewis Kennedy
Congress District 4 – Joshua Drake
Governor – Jim Lendall – jelendall [at] comcast [dot] net
Secretary of State – David Orr
Attorney General- Rebekah Kennedy
State Auditor – Mary Willis
State Treasurer – Bobby Tullis
State Senate District 18 – Greg Slocum
State Rep. District 33 – Conrad Harvin
State Rep. District 90 – Mark Swaney
Saline County Collector – Joy Ballard
Johnson County Coroner – Ray Wood

Endorsements in non-partisan races:
Howard Smith – West Memphis City Council
Jacob Hollaway – Jonesboro City Council

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Arkansas Green Campaign School now showing on Green Party US livestream

A recent Campaign School event hosted by the Arkansas Green Party in Little Rock, with presentations by Green Party political director Brent McMillan, is now running on Green Party US livestream in a loop.

Green Party Campaign Schools consist of workshops on all aspects of political campaign organizing for candidates, campaign staff, & GP organizers.

Thanks to Ken Adler for doing the live camera.

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The Green Flash

THE GREEN FLASH

OFFICIAL NEWSLETTER OF THE GREEN PARTY OF ARKANSAS

May 2, 2009

Volume 1, Number 32

Richard Carroll Switches to Democrats

On Wednesday, April 29, Richard Carroll announced that he will be seeking re-election as a Democrat in 2010. The decision to leave the Green Party for a reelection bid as a Democrat is disappointing, as Richard is a great legislator. However, attacks on Richard, mostly from out of state Greens on e-mail blogs, are out of place in our opinion. Richard had a great session as a first time legislator, and most importantly, as a first time GREEN legislator. We are grateful for the good that he has done for the party, and it will always be true that Richard Carroll’s first victory in Arkansas politics was also the Green Party’s first victory as well.

Richard introduced a bill to allow the voters the opportunity to change the ancient provision in the Arkansas constitution that says that atheists can’t hold public office or give testimony in legal cases. Richard introduced two ballot access bills in the legislature, and he fought hard for those bills. One of the two bills passed the legislature, and as a result the victory, new political parties in Arkansas will have 90 days, instead of only 60 days in which to collect the necessary signatures. Richard introduced a bill that would have required equal time in broadcast debates for all legal candidates. Perhaps most memorably, Richard tried to join the Black Caucus even though he is white.

All of these efforts were popular and widely covered in the press – and in every story on Richard Carroll, the Green Party was credited with having Richard as our first victory in the legislature. Richard has helped the Green Party of Arkansas tremendously and we are sorry to see him go, but we wish him well.

GPA Needs $10,000 + 5,000 Volunteer Gathered Signatures

The GPA’s fundraising drive continues, having received another $100 donation last week. Fundraising is absolutely necessary for a political party, there simply is no other way for a party to survive in modern America. GPA’s, strength has been that we are a self-funded political party. We now must work on fundraising on a steady basis in order to be ready to have candidates in the 2010 election. We must raise at least $10,000 and in addition we must have a number of volunteers that will commit to and carry through on gathering at least 5,000 signatures. This is not an impossible task by any means, but it must be done. Please consider donating a minimum of $100 to the Green Party’s ballot access effort, and also, decide to gather a given amount of signatures. By the efforts of our own organization, we put candidates on the ballot and make changes in the politics of our state.

Organizing Meeting to be Held in Independence County May 23

There will be an organizing meeting held Saturday, May 23, at 2:00 pm in Batesville on the campus of Lyon College. A Green Party supporter in Independence County, Ken Adler, is helping to plan the meeting and will be inviting people from Batesville and the surrounding area to the meeting. Greens from outside the county are invited to attend.

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There will be a meeting of the Green Party of Washington County on Wednesday, May 13, at the Fayetteville public library at 6:30 pm.

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Donate to the Green Party of Arkansas!

YES! I will support the GPA with a donation of $10 _____ $25_____ $50 ______ $100 ______ or write in your own amount $________.

YES! I will be a sustainer of the GPA with a regular monthly donation of $10 _____ $25_____

$50 ______ $100 ______ or write in your own amount $________.

Mail cash, or check (made out to the Green Party of Arkansas) to (GPA Treasurer)

Mark Jenkins
3610 Lilac Terrace
Little Rock, AR 72202