Sunday, August 03, 2008

DC's '2nd Party' challenges Washington Post to give Statehood Green candidates fair coverage

For Immediate Release Thursday, July 31, 2008

Contact: Scott McLarty, DC Statehood Green Party Media Coordinator, 202-518-5624, cell 202-904-7614,

DC's 'Second Party' challenges the Washington Post to give DC Statehood Green Party candidates fair coverage in the 2008 election

• Three local candidates speak at a press conference near the Post's front door; Green presidential candidate Cynthia McKinney sends a statement

• Four Statehood Green candidates for partisan office in 2008:
Keith Ware for the US Senate
Joyce Robinson-Paul for the US House
Maude Louise Hills for Delegate to the US House
David Schwartzman for At-Large Member of Council

WASHINGTON, DC -- The DC Statehood Green Party held a press conference this morning in front of the downtown Washington, DC offices of The Washington Post and challenged the newspaper -- and all DC area media -- to give the party's candidates fair coverage during the election year.

Speakers at the 11 am press conference, including three local candidates, noted that the DC Statehood Green Party is the District's 'Second Party' in terms of electoral clout. Statehood Green candidates have collectively received more votes than Republicans in recent general elections for partisan office, even when the two parties have run the same number of candidates. In 2006, the five Statehood Green candidates received a total of 47,421 votes, while the five Republican candidates received 32,658 votes.

The speakers noted that the Post has failed to recognize the party's increasing political strength, and referred to a May 29, 2008, online column by reporter Paul Kane in which he said that his paper has no intention his paper has no intention of covering the Green Party.

Sedinam Kinamo Christin Moyowaifza-Curry (SKCM Curry), campaign manager for Green presidential candidate Cynthia McKinney and running mate Rosa Clemente, read a statement from Ms. McKinney expressing support for the DC Statehood Green Party and local candidates. In her statement, Ms. McKinney said, "This is what my running mate, Rosa Clemente, correctly calls a 'White-Out' by the media of a political party that just nominated two women of color to lead their campaign for the White House. This censorship clearly reflects the fear of the established powers that equal time for the independent candidates might lead to their victory at the polls. In a supposed democracy, it is equivalent to rigging the election." (Ms. McKinney, Ms. Curry, and two of the four Statehood Green candidates are African American; Ms. Clemente is Black Puerto Rican; Ms. Hills is Native American.)

The three local candidates who spoke were Keith Ware for US Senate, Maude Louise Hills for Delegate to the US House, and David Schwartzman for At-Large Member of DC City Council. Joyce Robinson-Paul, candidate for the US House, was traveling and unable to attend.

Ms. McKinney's statement and Ms. Hills' press conference remarks are pasted below.

All three of the candidates at the press conference, as well as Ms. McKinney in her statement, stressed the goal of statehood for the District of Columbia. The DC Statehood Green Party is the only major party in DC whose national party endorses statehood for DC. The Democratic Party removed support for DC statehood from its platform in 2004. The Republican Party has never supported DC statehood.

At one point, the small crowd of supporters that gathered on the sidewalk outside the Washington Post's front door chanted "Statehood Now" and "Free DC." Statehood Greens served coffee, water, and doughnuts to reporters and others who attended the press conference and displayed a red, green, and black DC Statehood Green Party banner in front of the Post building.

• Statement from Green presidential nominee Cynthia McKinney, read by Sedinam Kinamo Christin Moyowaifza-Curry, Ms. McKinney's campaign manager

I want to applaud the efforts of the DC Statehood Green Party today and over the years. They have consistently run better candidates for local office than either the Democratic or Republican parties in Washington, DC. They are clearly a major party in the Nation’s Capitol, where the Republicans are the third party, and they have gotten more votes in general elections there than the Republicans can.

The Green Party is the only national party that supports granting DC statehood status in its platform, a change that would free a community of color, with a majority of African Americans from being a colony, and provide real democracy and civil rights for those living there. The Democratic Party removed this from their platform in 2004.

But the Green Party gets almost no coverage in the local and national media that covers Washington, DC politics. A reporter at the Washington Post has stated that they refuse to give our Green Party any coverage, despite their support from the population and their issues and values which reflect majority opinions. This is what my running mate, Rosa Clemente, correctly calls a “White-Out” by the media of a political party that just nominated two women of color to lead their campaign for the White House. This censorship clearly reflects the fear of the established powers that equal time for the independent candidates might lead to their victory at the polls. In a supposed democracy, it is equivalent to rigging the election.

Let me also send my support and endorsement of the four DC Statehood Green Party candidates running for political office this year: Keith Ware for US Senate; Joyce Robinson-Paul for US House; Maude Louise Hills for Delegate to the US House; David Schwartzman for At-Large Member of DC City Council.

We know that if the media would cover our platform, our speakers and our candidates, they would gain a large percentage of the vote nationally, win many state and local campaigns, and establish us as a legitimate third party in this country, and the only party that can make the changes necessary for its survival and future well being. If you took a poll about our peace, social justice, environmental and democratic values and policies, there is no doubt the majority of Americans would support them. And if you stopped taking polls telling the American people who can or can’t win an election ahead of time, we would long ago have been established as the leading third party in this country. It’s time to end the White Out and let the American people see and decide what sort of politics they want in office.

• Statement from Maude Louise Hills, DC Statehood Green candidate for Delegate to the US House

My name is Maude Hills, most people are familiar with my name as Louise Thundercloud, so Louise it is. My platform will address the two serious ills in the District of Columbia, each will only be addressed being granted unequivocal statehood.

One is the fact that for years the autistic population in DC has had to put up with one size fits all services, no behavioral interventions, no autism waiver (that would enable parents to access needed services of the very expensive supports that autistic children & adults will require for their entire lives.

This city has a bad record for squeezing the vulnerable autistic spectrum clients into inappropriate services , Now we are being faced with returning out of state placements to the district to save money when the clients are retuning to the same non-existent services, this treadmill has to stop.

As your DC Statehood Green Party Candidate for Delegate to the House of Representatives, I will fight to remedy this sad situation that exists in this city by forcing cross training with success proven agencies in other states. 2) By fighting the practice of changing diagnosis to fit the districts inability to create services for clients with accurate diagnosis. 3) By forcing an autism waver to be routinely offered by DC.

The second issue is truly affordable housing, not housing that targets moderate to high income earners, but housing hat serves the very low income and homeless.

I will do this by first working to limit the mayors ability to grant contracts to developers who service only moderate to higher income populations. I will fight to limit councils ability to make back door deals with developers of condos, townhouses or any dwellings which do not serve very low income or homeless people who need housing.

How will I work for this? By fighting for full statehood, by granting DC statehood, the mayor and council will have to follow the law of the land. I will work for legislation that will force the mayor and council to have to meet in front of no less than five community town hall meetings. To accurately address the concerns and desire of the entire community when it comes to issues of disposing public property which could be used for affordable housing.

In closing, I am willing to work with advocates for the autistic spectrum community, as well as homeless and housing advocates to make sure these needed changes happen. And remember DC will be a much better place for all of us if we HAVE STATEHOOD NOW! Thank you


DC Statehood Green Party

Green Party of the United States
202-319-7191, 866-41GREEN, Fax 202-319-7193
• Green candidate database for 2008 and other campaign information

Cynthia McKinney "Power to the People" Campaign for President

Rosa Clemente, candidate for Vice President

1 comment:

Jason Nabewaniec said...

Green Party Protestors Fault Post for Lack of Coverage

By Michael Birnbaum
The Washington Post, July 31, 2008

A group of about 15 D.C. Statehood Green Party protesters and candidates gathered outside The Washington Post building today, saying that The Post "routinely ignores or marginalizes the party's candidates."

"We're here to challenge The Post to cover D.C.'s second party in terms of national clout," said David Schwartzman, an at-large candidate for the D.C. Council. He highlighted the party's 2006 general election results, when the D.C. Statehood Green Party won more votes in the District than the Republican Party.

Former congresswoman Cynthia McKinney, the Green Party's candidate for president, sent a statement.

"We know that if the media covered our platform . . . they would establish us as the second political party in this nation," McKinney said in the statement, which was read by SKCM Curry, her campaign manager.

The protest was partially inspired by a May 29 online discussion with Post congressional reporter Paul Kane, in which he said, "We don't have enough resources to cover [the Green Party]."

The Post's executive editor, Leonard Downie Jr., said Kane isn't the one who makes those decisions.

"What we've been covering up until now is the nomination process of the two major parties," Downie said. Future coverage of third-party candidates, he said, "would be based on the past performance of those candidates, and how much interest we think our readers have in them."