This week the debate about the Green Party’s presidential campaign was on readers’ minds. We share your letters for “Safe States Strategy From Hell: Greens Respond to Progressive Left Dems” and “’Progressive’ Dems Ought to Divorce the Duopoly Not Badger Greens.”
In “Safe States Strategy From Hell: Greens Respond to Progressive Left Dems” Ann Garrison challenges the reasoning behind the recent open letter to the Green Party urging a strategy of avoiding a Green campaign in swing state in order to unseat Trump.
Holly Hart, interim campaign manager for Cobb/LaMarche 2004 and Co-Chair Green Party Media Committee writes:
“Your article, ‘Safe States Strategy from Hell,’ is much appreciated, I'd like to offer one needed correction: it's time people understand that the Greens did not run a ‘safe states’ strategy in 2004. There was some discussion of that, along with a few other strategies, but it was abandoned.
“The term was, however, used as a convenient lie to help convince Ralph Nader to run as an Independent candidate rather than on the Green ticket. A few Greens were also frightened upon being told that David Cobb was planning not to appear on their battle-ground state ballots -- also untrue.”
Ann Garrison responds:
“First, I think it's most important to repeat that I do not think the Green Party should run a ‘safe-states’ presidential campaign this year to help Democrats defeat Donald Trump. If Dems are so concerned about that, why didn't they join Jill Stein's lawsuit demanding recounts in three states that went for Trump in 2016? One was the State of Michigan, where rampant voter suppression was reported in Detroit, but Michigan's State Supreme Court ruled against Stein and the Dems remained silent.
“Second, I just reached David Cobb, the Greens' 2004 presidential candidate, on the phone, and he told me that he did not run a safe states campaign in 2004. I asked him to respond in writing, but he isn't able to until next week, so I hope we can return to it here then. There seems to have been argument within the Green Party about whether or not to run a safe-states campaign that year, as well as argument about whether to nominate Ralph Nader or David Cobb. I'm certainly not going to cite the Wikipedia as an irrefutable source, but it does reflect argument and some disarray within the Green Party that year:
“Thank you Holly Hart for your effort to set the record straight.”
“’Progressive’ Dems Ought to Divorce the Duopoly Not Badger Greens” by Glen Ford also rebuts the same open letter to the Green Party and argues for a rejection of the Democratic Party by all progressives.
Riva Enteen writes:
“’The worker who votes the Republican or Democratic ticket does worse than throw his vote away. He is a deserter of his class and his own worst enemy.’ -- Eugene Debs
“As to ‘anybody blue will do,’ Chomsky needs to be reminded of his assertion that: ‘If the Nuremberg laws were applied, then every post-WWII American president would have been hanged.’”
Santtu Karlgreen writes:
“All through his career, Bernie Sanders has again and again proved his loyalty to his handlers, the Dem establishment. When Sanders himself has said he is firmly part of the Dem establishment, it's beyond my powers of understanding why people like Glen Ford obstinately believe him to be "progressive." Bernie is a quasi-prograssive, a Obama 2.0. He may believe in his program, all the time knowing that corporate dems like Nancy Pelosi will always stop his propositions from advancing anywhere. Bernie is your alternative indie rockstar, de facto a millionaire with a nice pact with DNC, just like the last time, to travel around as a sheepherder to get young people from engaging in active non-violent civil resistance.”
Wesley Gray writes;
“Bernie Sanders is the closest electable candidate we've had to a Green outside of the GP since it was founded in 2001. Hell, after his primary *defeat* in 2016, Stein offered him the ticket as the GP presidential nominee. Now that he has a serious chance against a mixed bag of unlikable corporatists, now that a giant chunk of the GP agenda could take center stage in US politics should he win, it is beyond idiotic that Greens would refuse to vote for Sanders. Talk about incrementalism! Greens are still trying to get ballot access and matching federal funds, while failing to either run or win any major state or federal seats in its ENTIRE HISTORY. The Greens are disorganized to the point of incompetence. After nearly 20 years, it's almost like it's deliberate.”
Don Huntsberger writes:
“The duopoly of Democrats and Republicans are more alike in their core political values and focus than they are different. To think that its party elite would relinquish power, keep in mind that the Democratic party chose Hillary Clinton in 2016, receiving support from all across their ideological spectrum, that those that still rejected the choice of Clinton were given the choice of getting in line or leave. The progressives’ champion Sanders chose to support Clinton and her program. In my view, the Green party advocates for the political values that once were those of the Democratic party, say five or so decades ago,”
Mike Barr writes:
“The Greens should nominate Bernie, work for him, then provide a place for Bernie to continue the race as a Green. Several states have state parties that are independent but will support a Democratic candidate. This isn't new and it would put tremendous pressure on the Democratic leadership. They would know Bernie would still be in the race if they screw him again. Do the Greens have the juice, does Bernie have the cajones?”
Alvin Hoffer writes:
“Tulsi is the only candidate among the Dems for whom I would vote. I don't trust Sanders on foreign and military policy. He along with the late John McCain reproached Trump for Helsinki, the best Trump had done. Sanders also urged Maduro to resign. Not at all good!”
The debate about the best electoral path for the Black Left will continue on this page with your help.
Jahan Choudhry is Comments Editor for Black Agenda Report. He is an organizer with the Saturday Free School based in Philadelphia, PA.
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