Green Party Members in New York Voting In A Presidential Primary By Mail Ballot

Gloria Mattera, Co-Chair, Green Party of New York State
Peter LaVenia, Co-chair, Green Party of New York State

Albany, New York Registered Green Party members throughout New York State will vote in their presidential primary by mail ballot this week. Four candidates qualified to appear on the Green Party Ballot, Jesse Johnson, Cynthia McKinney, Kent Mesplay, and Kat Swift.

New Yorker voters may enroll in the Green Party simply by checking off the "other" box on the voter registration form and writing in "Green Party". The Green party of New York State won this right via a court case against New York State Board of Elections in 2002, along with the Libertarian, Liberal, and Right to Life parties.

Despite having enrollment, the Green Party does not have ballot status in New York and therefore was not allowed to participate in the State funded presidential primary this past February. The Green Party raised funds to pay for a mailing to all registered Greens in New York State with a current address on file with the New York State Board of Elections.

The Green Party ballots allow voters to rank every candidate in order of preference, which allows voters who support losing candidates to transfer their support to candidates still in the running for additional delegates. The Green Party advocates for ranked choice voting as a more democratic voting method. The Green Party ballots will be publicly hand counted on May 31st, and must be postmarked by May 21st.

New York will also be selecting delegates to attend the Green Party's national convention, to take place in Chicago, July 10-13. ( org/2008- elections/index.shtml) . The Green Party of New York is allotted 40
delegates out of a total of 836 at the convention ( org/2008- elections/ Delegation- Size.php).

Five states held Green Party primaries this year: California, Massachusetts, DC, Arkansas, and Illinois. The Green Party has ballot status in a total of 21 states; the full list is available at org/committees/ ballot/ballotsta tus.shtml.

The Green Party stands for real change. From the start we opposed the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. We want our troops brought home from Iraq immediately and demand an end to the U.S. occupations of other countries. The Green Party supports single payer health care and has led the fight worldwide to curb climate change
through energy conservation, renewable energy, organic farming and local food, as well as investments in mass transit.

In contrast, both the Democratic and Republican Parties support a continued military presence in Iraq as well as threatening military intervention in Iran and Pakistan. Neither of the Democratic or the Republican presidential candidates has made a commitment to sign the next Kyoto Agreement that seeks global reductions in greenhouse gas pollution.

These ballots must be postmarked by May 21.

Green may also wish to become a delegate to the GP-US convention being held this July in Chicago. These delegates will be chosen by the GPNY regions. If you are an enrolled Green and want more information, you can contact either your Executive Committee regional representative, or other party officers