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News :: Politics
Primary Race in MA
Email: ollamhfaery (nospam) earthlink.net
02 Feb 2008
While the corp[orate politicians and the corporate media are silent, here is some news for you all. please sprad the word.
Anti-Nader Dirty Tricks Defeated in Massachusetts
The Invisible Green Primary
By JOHN V. WALSH
February 2 / 3, 2008
Massachusetts has three primaries on Super Tuesday - a Republican, a
Democrat and a Green. (In MA, the Greens have made common cause with the
Rainbow Coalition to form the Green Rainbow Party, GRP). But you would
never know it from the declarations of Democrat Secretary of State William
Galvin who in his public service announcements speaks only of the
Republican and Democrat contests. This is especially damaging to the GRP,
because in MA those who are not registered with any party, the so-called
"unenrolled" voters are eligible to vote in the GRP primary. These are
most disillusioned and most likely to go Green. But such voters must ask
for the Green ballot at the polling place. The people staffing the polling
places are supposed to inform the unenrolled voters of all three options,
but right now it is unclear if Galvin has so instructed them in a way that
will guarantee it happens. Given Galvin's public service announcements,
that seems doubtful.
This is an outrage since the GRP had to work very hard to win ballot
access after the "safe states" debacle of 2004 in which the GP suffered
mightily at the hands of the DemoGreens who gained control and sought
above all to protect the prowar John Kerry. So in 2006 the hard working
Greens set about gathering signatures once again for a series of statewide
offices, Governor, Secretary of State and Treasurer. The GRP candidates
for Secretary of State, Jill Stein, and for Treasurer, Jamie O'Keefe, both
won close to 20% of the vote, giving the GRP back its ballot status. And
so the GRP is entitled to have a presidential primary this coming Tuesday.
The ballots are printed and available at the polling places.
Not only that but both Ralph Nader and Cynthia McKinney, along with a
number of lesser known candidates, will be on the GRP ballot. Ralph and
Cynthia are certain to attract votes if the people know about the primary.
But so far not a whimper out of Galvin, who is considered a "liberal"
Democrat, or the mass media despite a steady stream of letters to the
editor and op-ed submissions. So tell your friends in MA that there are
three primaries afoot on Tuesday - and in two of them there are genuine
antiwar candidates, Ron Paul in the Republican primary and all the
candidates in the GRP primary. There should be enough variety there for
everyone to cast a genuine antiwar vote, no matter your other beliefs.
Meanwhile inside the Green Party (GP) there have been numerous attempts to
keep Nader off the ballot using very sleazy tactics. At the national level
in a now notorious letter, Greg Gerritt, chair of the GP Presidential
Campaign Support Committee (PCSC), called on Nader not to run for
president. Although Gerritt identified himself as co-chair of the PCSC he
acted without the knowledge of his committee. After being found out,
Gerritt "apologized." The same sort of thing happened in MA where a small
group tried to prevent Nader from getting on the GRP primary ballot.
Rejected by an overwhelming majority at the GRP state convention, this
group returned to a lower body, the State Committee, last weekend with a
motion that any votes for Nader would not go to him but be passed on to
at-large delegates. This was an attempt to undo in committee what had been
done by convention vote - just the kind of back room tactic that the War
Parties are noted for. Once again the rank and file Greens performed
admirably and by an overwhelming majority beat back this undemocratic
maneuver. The party co-chairs and the State Committee meeting facilitators
wanted nothing to do with this. Again the rank and file Greens did
admirably. But as I write this, there is yet another attempt to derail
Nader, one which will surely not succeed. For those who wonder why Ralph
does not let his fortunes depend entirely on the Green machine, these
examples should suffice.
So where does the strong animus to Nader by some Greens come from? It most
decidedly does not come from McKinney who has way too much integrity to
get involved in this kind of thing. But at times it comes from those who
claim to be her supporters like the scalawag Gerritt. To some degree it
comes from those in the GP who think only in terms of identity politics,
for whom Ralph is a white guy and no more. (Why this would seem forward
looking at this time is a mystery since identity politics lies at the core
of the retrograde Democrat Party these days.) To some degree there are
bitter feelings stemming from 2004 and the "safe states" strategy, which
Nader refused to embrace and which brought the GP low. However there is a
far more important dynamic at work here. If one attends to the rants of
Gitlin and Alterman and their ilk, it is clear that the Dems fear Nader
like the plague. A combination of the resources, which the Greens can
command and Nader could muster, would allow a real anti-war,
anti-corporate electoral run in all 51 states in 2008. The Dems will do
anything to stop that - from lawsuits to conniving within the GP and
fishing in troubled GP waters for whatever allies they can scare up.
In any event on Super Tuesday in MA there will be genuine antiwar
candidates in both the GRP and Republican primaries. Cerainly worth going
to the polls for. Pity that the Democrat Party, as usual, will only have
hawks to offer us.
John V. Walsh can be reached at john.endwar (at) gmail.com. He is aware that he
has not mentioned the candidacy of the noble Mike Gravel, but at this
point one must consider his candidacy as dead as Kucinich's.
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This work is in the public domain