Chris Wahmhoff, the 2014 Green Party nominee for U.S. Senate in Michigan, was sentenced Monday to four days in jail for parole violations related to his 2013 activism against a new oil pipeline.
According to the Associated Press, Wahmhoff pleaded guilty to parole violations related to his 2014 conviction for “resisting police and trespassing,” at which time he was “given a two-month suspended jail sentence. In June 2013, the Kalamazoo man spent about 10 hours inside an open pipe in Fredonia Township. The pipeline was under construction for Enbridge Inc. The company’s ruptured line spilled oil and fouled the Kalamazoo River system in 2010.”
Wahmhoff received 26,137 votes, or 0.9% of the total, in his Senate run.
The Michigan Green Party is demanding that the U.S. government “use all its considerable resources to supply the people of Flint with safe water in sufficient quantities for drinking, bathing, cooking and cleaning,” the party said.
Candace Caveny, the 2014 candidate for lieutenant governor, said, “There needs to be a full and immediate mobilization of all the resources at the disposal of the federal government to provide Flint with safe water. … The government has the ability and the resources to supply every resident of Flint with safe water in amounts necessary for daily life. They must do so immediately.”
John Anthony La Pietra, who ran for state attorney general that same year, said, “With our state government involved up to the highest level, we need independent investigations to find everyone responsible for this tragedy — and to make sure they face all appropriate civil penalties, recall for elected officials, and criminal charges up to possible depraved-heart murder.”
Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein is calling for the criminal prosecution of Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder and other public officials who knew about the poisoning of Flint’s water but failed to act. In a release Stein “called for immediate federal and state intervention to resolve Flint’s water crisis” as well as “a massive federal investment in the nation’s crumbling water system.”
Stein said, “The Flint crisis is the logical outcome of decades of betrayal by the bipartisan political establishment serving the economic elite: deindustrialization and disinvestment, abandonment of democracy and neglect of the lives and well being of poor people and communities of color.”
Stein is the co-author of In Harm’s Way: Toxic Threats to Child Development and Environmental Threats to Healthy Aging, both published in 2009. She has received awards for her work from Clean Water Action and the Toxic Action Center.
In other Stein campaign news, Stein was interviewed on the podcast The Spirit of the Forest. The interview lasted 44 minutes.
Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein said on her campaign Facebook page, “Please join me in raising our voices to protest the unjust imprisonment of anti-corporate, anti-racist, community powerhouse Reverend Edward Pinkney, and his punitive transfer last week to a prison far from his family, attorney and community in Benton Harbor, MI. Reverend Pinkney’s imprisonment is a case of blatant political and racial harassment, jailing him for over 300 days while his wrongful conviction by an all white jury for a minor offense not normally given jail time — allegedly altering dates on a recall petition — is under appeal no less. There was no evidence presented at trial to support the conviction in the first place.”
Stein urged supporters to “call Michigan Department of Corrections Director Heidi Washington, or her assistant Sandy Simon, to urge Rev. Pinkney’s return down state: 517-241-7238.”
From the Michigan Green Party:
In recognition of World Water Day on March 22, the Green Party of Michigan (GPMI) renewed its opposition to Enbridge’s Line 5 fossil-fuel pipeline through the Straits of Mackinac.
At the urging of Chris Wahmhoff, the party’s 2014 US Senate candidate, Greens approved a call to decommission the 60-year-old pipeline at a state membership meeting March 14-15 in East Lansing.
GPMI Vice Chair Art Myatt explained the case for decommissioning Line 5 — and against suggestions of repairing or replacing it, much less expanding its capacity — in an entry on the party’s blog.
“There are a lot of scenarios about how disastrous a rupture of Line 5 dumping into the Straits of Mackinac would be. The gist of it is that it would be a disaster spread rapidly into both Lake Michigan and Lake Huron, and impossible to clean up. It’s a really extreme risk for Michigan to take for the benefit of a Canadian pipeline company specifically and for perpetuating the environmentally destructive tar sands energy generally.” Continue Reading
From the Grand Rapids Business Journal:
An ex-Green Party candidate for U.S. Senate has received his sentence for illegally protesting a new oil pipeline in the region.
Calhoun County Circuit Judge James Kingsley gave Christopher Wahmhoff a two-month suspended jail sentence yesterday and placed him on one year’s probation.
Wahmhoff was convicted Dec. 16 of resisting police and trespassing. In June 2013, the 36-year-old Kalamazoo man spent about 10 hours inside an open pipe in Fredonia Township. Continue Reading
Chris Wahmhoff, the Michigan Green Party‘s 2014 US Senate candidate, has been found guilty of trespassing and resisting police after sitting in a pipeline under construction to protest Enbridge’s 2010 oil spill, which dumped over a million gallons of tar sands sludge in the Kalamazoo River.
From the Battle Creek Enquirer:
A protester who sat in an Enbridge Inc. pipeline for a day in June 2013 could go to jail after his conviction Tuesday.
“If I was getting put away for 50 years it would be worth it to me,” Christopher Wahmhoff, 36, of Kalamazoo said after a Calhoun County judge found him guilty of trespassing and resisting police.
Wahmhoff was charged after the Calhoun County Sheriff Department said he entered a pipeline being built by Enbridge near Division Drive and 16-Mile Road in Fredonia Township on June 24, 2013.
He said he was protesting construction of the new pipeline by the company responsible for a million-gallon spill of oil into Talmadge Creek and the Kalamazoo River near Marshall in 2010. Continue Reading
Rev. Edward Pinkney of Benton Harbor, Michigan is a long-time community organizer who has led resistance in this predominantly African-American community to a government subservient to the Benton Harbor-based Whirlpool corporation. Benton Harbor is among the Michigan cities, including Detroit, where democratic self-governance has been replaced by “emergency financial management”.
After Pinkney led a petition effort to recall the mayor of Benton Harbor, he was arrested, charged with election fraud, and eventually sentenced to up to 10 years in prison despite a distinct lack of evidence (as explained below). Rev. Pinkney is a prominent member of the Michigan Green Party and has run for Congress on the Green line.
The overt targeting of an African-American activist for a politically-motivated prosecution is reminiscent of recent episodes involving Chuck Turner and Elston McCowan, both Greens who challenged the power structures in their communities. In a system where police officers regularly kill unarmed African-American men without facing trial, it is especially galling that the same system sentences an African-American activist to up to 10 years imprisonment on trumped-up, politically-motivated charges.
Truthout.org has the details on the trial and sentencing of Rev. Edward Pinkney: Continue Reading
From Green Party US:
WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Green Party of the United States is calling for a new antiwar movement in response to the renewal of U.S. military involvement in Iraq.
Greens said that dropping bombs in Iraq and Syria is unlikely to bring peace and stability to the region. The open-ended campaign includes more than a thousand U.S. troops on the ground in Iraq.
Green Party candidates and leaders strongly condemn the violent extremism of Islamic State militias but asserted that there are ways to respond without military force (see “53 National Religious Groups, Academics, and Ministers Urge Alternatives to U.S. Military Action in Iraq,” published August 27 by Win Without War, http://winwithoutwar.org/religious-letter-iraq). Continue Reading
From the Green Party US:
Earlier this week, President Obama announced his plans to increase airstrikes and arm Syrian rebels in an attempt to control Iraq. The Green Party has called on the President to resist this next step and on Congress to revoke its ‘blank check’ for war. Green candidates for Congress added to the chorus of voices calling to resist this escalation.
Nancy Wade, Green candidate for U.S. House in Illinois’ 5th District: “Congress has abdicated its Constitutional responsibilities by handing the Executive branch virtually unlimited authority to wage war on the scale and in the fashion of its choosing. This has resulted in catastrophic and costly crimes against humanity such as we have seen in Iraq and Libya, and as we see continuing in an increasing number of countries…” Continue Reading