The Green Party qualified its statewide candidates today, headed by Howie Hawkins for Governor, by filing 27,500 signatures, with more than 100 signatures coming from 26 out of the 29 Congressional Districts.
Also qualifying were four women for statewide office: Gloria Mattera for Lt. Governor, Julia Willebrand for State Comptroller, Colia Clark for US Senate(full term); and Cecile Lawrence for US Senate (Special term).
Key issues for the Greens this fall include support for a state and national New Green Deal to provide for living wage jobs for all New Yorkers, starting with massive investments in renewable energy; bringing America troops home from war and slashing the military budget; a single payer Medicare for All universal health program at the state and national level; and a ban on the proposed hydrofracking for natural gas.
The Greens also called for the end to the corruption that dominates all levels of the American government; full funding for education, including college; strong action to reduce climate change; an end to the war on drugs and the prison industrial complex; and, support for immigrant rights and same sex marriage.
“A Green New Deal will provide greater financial security for Americans, limit the power of corporations, reduce military spending, reform America’s corrupted election system, and address the growing climate-change crisis. The cuts in military spending combined with huge public investments in renewable energy, public transportation, and conservation will ensure a peaceful future for the US, with greater economic stability and the means to curb the catastrophic advance of global warming,” said Hawkins. Hawkins is the only union member running for Governor. He unloads trailers at UPS in Syracuse, where he is a member of Teamsters Local 317 and active in Teamsters for a Democratic Union, US Labor Against the War, and the Labor Campaign for Single Payer Healthcare.
“The Greens are picking up the New Deal torch from Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt that the current Democratic leadership has dropped,” Hawkins remarked.
“The Green New Deal is full of ideas that most Republican and Democratic candidates won’t touch. Despite some differences, the two Titanic parties promise the same things: more military aggression around the world, endless compromises and capitulations designed to benefit the powerful corporations that line the pockets of Democratic and Republican politicians,” said Mattera, a public health worker with children in the NYC hospital system. “These bipartisan policies led to the current financial meltdown and a decade of war-without-end. Voters who want more of the same should keep voting the same. Voters who want a new direction for our country should support the Green New Deal and vote to get Greens elected to public office,” she added.
“We already have the technology needed to install solar panels, small scale wind, energy conservation, and other renewable energy needs to meet all our energy needs; what we need is to immediately scale up to make it occur. Sustainable, renewable energy can be and is beautiful. Done right, individuals, families and businesses may never have to pay another heat, cooling or electricity bill to an outside entity often owned by a foreign corporation. We don’t need to continue digging for toxic materials such as oil, methane gas, uranium, and coal that’s making all of us sick. We need to adopt a ‘no harm’ standard now for all forms of extractive and other industries. With the Green Party leading the way, we can move quickly towards economic, health, as well as climate change solutions. This is why I’m in this campaign to win,” said Cecile Lawrence.
Cecile Lawrence, a resident of Apalachin in Tioga County, a Jamaica-born activist in the movement against hydrofracking for natural gas due to concerns over water and other environmental issues, is running for the Senate seat to fill out the term of Hillary Clinton (Gillibrand was appointed). Ms. Lawrence is active in the movements for health care reform, organic agriculture and renewable energy.
“New Yorkers have the right to hear all of the candidates debate the issue, instead of being subjected to the coronation of Cuomo the II while the Republicans campaign as the party of no and inflaming bigotry through their attacks on Muslims. We are in the midst of the greatest worldwide recession in seventy years, with unemployment at staggering levels, and the Democrat candidate’s platform is to protect the rich, attack public employee unions, and propose a property tax cap. I have yet to uncover a more conservative Democratic candidate for Governor in New York’s long history,” noted Hawkins.
Colia Clark, a great grandmother who campaigned for civil rights and peace alongside the late Medgar W. Evers and Martin L. King Jr., said, “America’s greatest national treasure is her youth. Due to the high cost of a college education that treasure is endangered. I am campaigning for the US Senate fighting for critical legislation designed to protect the nation’s most valuable resource from harm of not getting a college education needed to survive in the 21st century. I will fight in the hallways, back rooms, in the US Senate chamber and all over Washington, DC for democratic education. A democratic education will guarantee all young folk living in the United States a full education without expense and loans. Education is also a human right. An educated nation is the best national security possible. The time to protect America’s national security is now. True change is putting people first,” said Ms. Clark.
Colia Clark, a former lecturer on Africana and Women’s studies, is a long time social justice activist from Harlem who is presently working on self-determination for the Haitian people
Julia Willebrand is a retired professor and former UFT delegate from Manhattan. A long time environmental leader and peace activist, she is running for State Comptroller, a position she received 117,908 votes for 4 years ago. The Green Party needs 50,000 votes for Governor to regain its status as an official ballot access qualified party.
“The Comptroller alone decides how to invest the $130 billion in Common Retirement pension funds. Wise investments targeted to create jobs and support infrastructure repair should be the most important use of that power. And ramping up the Comptroller’s audit power could slow a rising tide of public corruption in NY state,” she added.
All of the Green called for an end to war without end, to bring the troops home from Iraq, Afghanistan and more than a hundred other countries, and to cut the military budget by 50 to 75% to strengthen America through reinvestment in a strong economy and to cooperate with, not bully, the other countries of the planet.
“As we watched in horror as thousands of innocent victims lay dead in the smoldering ruins on 9/11, the Green Party was the first to release a statement calling on America to reject the all too predictable effort by the major parties to turn this criminal act into a call for war, to curtail civil liberties here in America while they invaded foreign lands in their unquenchable thirst for oil. All of the dangers that we warned of on that horrible day have come true. The world has not become a safer place, yet the major parties have fed the greed of the military contractors and Wall Street speculators, devastating the economic and national security of the rest of us. The path that the Democrats and Republicans, the media and corporate America, chose for us that day, the path that they continue to promote, was wrong. Another world is possible, one built on peace and justice, where improving the quality of life for all is far more important than increasing the wealth of the privileged and powerful. Vote Green Party for a change,” added Hawkins.