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U.S. Green Party leaders call for Instant Runoff Voting

irvLeaders of the Green Party of the U.S. said Monday that voters should push for, and legislators should adopt, Instant Runoff Voting, also called Ranked-Choice Voting, in all at-large elections at the federal and state level.

The Greens said that IRV, which allows voters rank the candidates in order of preference instead of voting for a single candidate, is an effective system for electing a single winner when more than two candidates are on the ballot. IRV ensures that the winner will have majority support and eliminates the alleged danger of “spoiling.”

Laura Wells, the Green Party 2010 nominee for California governor, said, “The U.S. Constitution doesn’t enshrine two parties. We demand fair and open elections in a multi-party democracy. Americans deserve the right to vote for candidates who represent their interests and ideals, without being told that only two candidates or two parties are legitimate.” Wells was part of the team that successfully fought for the implementation of IRV in Oakland.

Green Party of the U.S. national co-chair Sanda Everette said, “Greens have been calling for reforms like IRV since the Green Party was founded. In the wake of the 2000 election, Green nominee Ralph Nader was widely blamed for spoiling and enabling George W. Bush to move into the White House. We’ve challenged those worried about spoiling to demand IRV. Democratic Party leaders have ignored us — which leads us to suspect that Dem[ocratic] politicians would rather lose to Republicans than tolerate multi-party competition.”

Young Greens steering committee member Michael Dennis said, “It’s possible that 2016 will mark the end of two-party politics — or at least a huge crack in the perception that a field limited to two parties is acceptable. Those worried about the spoiler factor because of third-party participation in elections should join the demand for reforms like IRV.”

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California Green Party June 2014 primary election results

p luis rodriguezOn June 3rd, California held its Top Two primary for statewide and legislative offices, as well as local elections in many communities. Here are results for California Green Party candidates:

  • Gubernatorial candidate Luis Rodriguez earned 46,181 votes for 1.5%, the top vote-getter outside the Democratic and Republican parties.
  • Jena Goodman got 70,663 votes (2.3%) for Lt. Governor – again, the top vote-getter outside the establishment parties.
  • David Curtis got 87,311 votes (3.0%) for Secretary of State.
  • Laura Wells earned 167,501 votes (5.6%) for Comptroller.
  • Ellen Brown got 194,987 votes (6.5%) for Treasurer.
  • Barry Hermanson got 4,435 votes (5.5%) for US House District 12 against incumbent Nancy Pelosi.
  • Michael Powelson got 1,800 votes (3.3%) for US House District 30.
  • Michael Sachs got 552 votes (0.7%) for US House District 33 (finishing 12th in a field of 18 candidates).
  • Dan Hamburg was re-elected to the Mendocino County Board of Supervisors.
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California Greens receive deceptive “Vote Green” mailer promoting Democrats

Californians Vote Green mailerCalifornia Green party member Linda Piera-Avila reported that on May 20th, she received a mailer with the headline “Californians Vote Green” [sic] that promotes candidates from the Democratic Party in several races with Green Party candidates. At right is an image from the mailer. California’s Top Two primary is on Tuesday, June 3rd.

The “Californians Vote Green” mailer urges votes for Democrats Alex Padilla for Secretary of State (David Curtis is the Green candidate), Betty T. Yee for Controller (Laura Wells is the Green), and Wendy Greuel for US House of Representatives District 33 (Ian Sachs is the Green). According to the mailer, each of these candidates authorized and paid for their appearance on the mailer. In addition, the mailer urges a yes vote on Proposition 41, while the California Green Party has come out in favor of a no vote.

From Linda Piera-Avila’s post on facebook: Continue Reading

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Green Party: Stop the deportations, enact legal protections for undocumented immigrants

green party earthflowerFrom Green Party US:

WASHINGTON, DC — Candidates and leaders of the Green Party of the United States expressed support for the ongoing protests against deportations and confirmed the party’s demand for protected legal status for undocumented immigrants currently in the U.S.

Recent protests against deportations include hunger strikes and a peaceful sit-in by members of the Orange County DREAM Team at the Washington D.C. office of Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez (D-Calif.).

Margaret Guttshall, Green candidate for Wayne State University Board of Governors in Michigan:

“Greens call for the protections of the Dream Act to be extended to all undocumented immigrants, not just those who arrived as minors or graduated from high school. The unprecedented spike in deportations — nearly 2 million, averaging 1,100 per day — under President Obama has meant brutal raids, destroyed families, and a climate of fear and helplessness. The President promised to work for passage of the Dream Act but has also surrendered to pressure from xenophobic Republican politicians.” Continue Reading

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Green CA Governor candidate collecting signatures to fight new rules to keep minor parties off the ballot

p luis rodriguez speechFrom the California Green Party:

What: Signature drive to overcome new election rules designed to keep traditionally qualified parties like the Greens  and others off the ballot
Who: Luis Rodriguez, Green Party endorsed candidate for governor, is collecting signatures to ensure being on the June 2014 ballot. 
Where: Hollywood, in front of  the Farm Fresh Ranch Market, 5520 Sunset Blvd.
When: Wednesday, February 19, 1pm-2pm
In the face of an almost seven-fold increase in the number of signatures to be on the ballot because of the Top Two, Green-endorsed candidate for Governor Luis J. Rodriguez will be signature gathering Wednesday afternoon in Hollywood, in front of  the Farm Fresh Ranch Market at 1pm.
Under California’s new Top Two law, statewide candidates from the minor parties  must collect 10,000 signatures to get their candidates on the ballot or pay the fee, which ranges from $2,600 to $3,500 per office.  The old signature threshold was just 150 signatures from party members. The signature deadline is Thursday, February 20th.
“Although we have risen to this challenge with dozens of unpaid, mostly young volunteer petition circulators, we regard the 10,000-signature requirement to be an undemocratic impediment to the ballot.,” says Rodriguez, who is waging a grassroots campaign on issues of ending poverty and the schools-to-prison pipeline. “The Top Two favors moneyed interests at the expense of diverse voices, that have every right to be heard. We call upon the legislature to amend this law in favor of more fair ballot access for the people of California.” Continue Reading
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California Greens vie for June primary spots

p ellen brownFrom Neon Tommy, the online publication of the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism:

Though California’s June primary is still nearly four months away, candidates are scrambling to collect thousands more voter signatures than previously required.

A record-high 42 percent of Americans self-identified as political independents in 2013, the highest percentage in 25 years, according to a Gallup poll. The Green Party of California (GPCA) is looking to not only laurawells2increase its numbers in office, but also boost its visibility in a heavily Democratic and Republican political landscape.

Ellen Brown, GPCA candidate for treasurer, said that Americans — and specifically Californians — are increasingly open to third-party politics outside the realm of traditional Republican and Democratic platforms.

“It’s a good time to be running because there’s definitely more public support for independents,” Brown said. “People are so disillusioned with the two main parties, they don’t seem that different anymore and you can’t trust them to do what they said. The wave of the future will be politicians who will be independent of big money.” Continue Reading

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Green Party SOTU broadcast will feature Tim DeChristopher, Ellen Brown, Jill Stein and more

green party earthflowerFrom the Green Party US:

Green Party candidates running in 2014, activists, and leaders, including 2012 presidential nominee Jill Stein and running mate Cheri Honkala, will comment on President Obama’s State of the Union speech in a live broadcast on Tuesday, Jan. 28 on the Green Party’s Livestream channel (http://www.livestream.com/greenpartyus).

The public is invited to watch and participate in the chat and phone in questions during the broadcast

When: Tuesday, Jan. 28, 9:00 pm ET, 6:00 pm PT

Where: http://www.livestream.com/greenpartyus

Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/USGreenPartyonLivestream/app_142371818162

The State of the Union broadcast, which begins at 9:00 pm ET, will be aired on the Livestream page.

A chat box for open discussion will be on the screen next to the live State of the Union video Viewers are encouraged to contribute questions for the guests, online by text chat or by phone.

After the president’s address, the guests will be on the Livestream broadcast via remote webcam. Craig Seeman and Green Party national co-chair Starlene Rankin are producing the show and will also participate on air. Mr. Seeman will host.

Confirmed guests on hand to comment on the President’s speech:

Ellen Brown, Green candidate for California Treasurer (http://ellenbrown.com/treasurer), author of “Web of Debt,” “The Public Bank Solution,” and other books (http://ellenbrown.com/author)

Tim DeChristopher, climate justice activist and co-founder of the environmental group Peaceful Uprising (http://www.peacefuluprising.org); his protest at a Bureau of Land Management oil and gas lease auction and subsequent conviction were profiled in the documentry “Bidder 70″ (http://www.bidder70film.com)

Bruce Dixon, co-chair of the Georgia Green Party (http://www.georgiagreenparty.org/Bio/Bruce_Dixon) and managing editor of Black Agenda Report (http://blackagendareport.com)

Cheri Honkala, 2012 Green vice-presidential nominee, co-founder of the Poor People’s Economic Human Rights Campaign (http://economichumanrights.org)

Shamako Noble, co-founder of the Hip Hop Congress (http://hiphopcongress.com); labor and community organizer in the Bay Area, California; Hip Hop artist

David Schwartzman, DC Statehood Green Party candidate for U.S. Shadow Senator (http://www.davidschwartzman.com)

Jill Stein, 2012 Green Party presidential nominee (http://www.jillstein.org)

Laura Wells, 2014 Green candidate for Controller of California (http://www.laurawells.org / Twitter: https://twitter.com/WellsController)

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Green Party to host Livestream airing of State of the Union with Green commentary Jan. 28

green party earthflowerFrom Green Party US:

The Green Party will host a Livestream broadcast of President Obama’s State of the Union address with Green guest commentary, Tuesday, Jan. 2Viewers can participate in the chat and phone in questions during the broadcast

When: Tuesday, Jan. 28, 9:00 pm ET, 6:00 pm PT

Where: http://www.livestream.com/greenpartyus

Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/USGreenPartyonLivestream/app_142371818162

WASHINGTON, DC — The Green Party invites the public to participate in an online chat during President Obama’s 2014 State of the Union speech on Tuesday, Jan. 28, on the Green Party’s Livestream channel (http://www.livestream.com/greenpartyus).

The State of the Union broadcast, which begins at 9:00 pm ET, will be aired on the Livestream page. A chat box will for the discussion will be on the screen next to the live State of the Union video.

Among the guests on hand to comment on the President’s speech:

Jill Stein, 2012 Green Party presidential nominee and co-founder of the Green Shadow Cabinet (http://greenshadowcabinet.us)

Cheri Honkala, 2012 Green vice-presidential nominee, co-founder of the Poor People’s Economic Human Rights Campaign (http://greenshadowcabinet.us/member-profile/8581)

Laura Wells, 2014 Green candidate for Controller of California (http://www.laurawells.org / Twitter:https://twitter.com/WellsController) Continue Reading

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California Green Party announces 2014 statewide endorsements

p luis rodriguezFrom Napa Valley Patch:

On the heels of a record number of California Greens elected in an odd-numbered year (20), the Green Party of California (GPCA) announces its official endorsements for the June 2014 primary: Luis Rodriguez, Governor; Laura Wells, Controller; Ellen Brown, Treasurer; and David Curtis, Secretary of State.

In 2012, the L.A. Weekly named Luis Rodriguez one of the 60 most fascinating people in Los Angeles, citing his history of art, activism and ‘fighting his way through the mean streets of East L.A.”

Rodriguez visited Napa in October to seek local support.

“This campaign is an imaginal poetic journey,” said Rodriguez in a speech to the GPCA’s recent state meeting in Santa Rosa. “But we also aim to win.”

“Winning is addressing poverty, justice and the environment,” Rodriguez told GPCA delegates. “Solutions come from aligning resources to meet human needs, by providing livable and meaningful work or income, healthy and clean communities and free quality health care for all. We must also address the massive inequities of the criminal justice system, and ensure arts, culture and expression outlets in every neighborhood.”

Also solution-oriented, Laura Wells and Ellen Brown advocate “banking in the public interest”, to address the state’s ongoing fiscal crisis and infrastructure funding shortfalls, by establishing a publicly-owned state bank for CaliforniaContinue Reading