Sunflower Seed E-Newsletter February/March 2017

Welcome to the February/March 2017 issue of the Sunflower Seed! In this issue you will find the most recent 2017 Green endorsed candidates, learn how Greens are defending Ranked Choice Voting in Saint Paul, get an update on the historic Cheri Honkala campaign to fight establishment corruption, and learn about massive Green successes in the Netherlands and England! Enjoy!

We need YOU to become a sustaining donor!

We need your help to maintain our office administrator through the year and beyond! If just 40 people on this email donated $10 a month we would meet our goal!

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Upcoming Events:

Friday, March 31st

Spring Cleaning: Changing the Political Landscape

7:30pm-9pm

110 Atwood Memorial Center, St. Cloud State University

720 Fourth Ave S

St. Cloud, MN 56301

Sunday, April 2nd

4th Congressional Green Party Membership Meeting

1:15pm-3:15pm

Rice Street Library

1011 Rice St.

Saint Paul, MN 55117

Saturday, April 8th

GPMN Coordinating Committee Meeting

10am - 1pm

4200 Cedar Ave

Minneapolis, MN 55407

Saturday April 29th

2017 Southern Minnesota Green Party Spring Conference

12pm-4:30pm

Rochester Public Library Auditorium

101 2nd St SE

Rochester, MN 55904

Greens endorse five candidates in Minneapolis (so far)

CamSamCharles.jpgThe Green Party of the 5th Congressional District has endorsed 5 Minneapolis city council candidates so far for the 2017 election.

The endorsement process is ongoing and as needed, but so far the list includes:

Ward 2 Minneapolis Councilmember Cam Gordon – WebsiteFacebookTwitter

Ward 3 Minneapolis Council candidate Samantha Pree-Stinson - WebsiteFacebookTwitter

Ward 8 Minneapolis Council candidate Terry White (Website and Social Media coming soon!)

Park Board District 3, Charles Exner - Facebook

Park Board District 4, Addy Free – WebsiteFacebookTwitter


TerryAddy.pngSam Pree-Stinson has been  profiled by the Twin Cities Daily Planet and the Minneapolis Journal and also appeared on KFAI in the last two months!

All of our Green Party candidates throughout the state are, and will be, featured on our website here.

We are actively searching for more candidates across the state, particularly for soil and water commissioners – which we successfully elected three of in 2016.

If you are interested in running - or want to know more about how you can run Green - please contact Andy Hamerlinck at iamandy@riseup.net.

(Photos courtesy Brandon Long, Addy Free, and Terry White)

Green hopeful Elizabeth Dickinson adds “new (welcome) dimension” to Saint Paul Mayors race 

ElizabethDickinson.jpgIn an interview with the Pioneer Press, Elizabeth – who is seeking the Green Party of the 4th Congressional District’s endorsement at their upcoming membership meeting April 2nd – said running for Mayor was “the biggest contribution I could think of to make to my city”.

The Pioneer Press praised Elizabeth’s presence, the only woman and Green, in the race saying she “adds new dimensions to the conversation, and that’s welcome”.

The editorial board also noted of the long time environmental activist that it’s “no surprise that environmental policy sets her apart”. They went on to say:

“Dickinson lays out a Climate Action Plan with ‘big ideas’ that include a vision for solar panels on the roofs of every city school, an effort that also would create jobs for those who need them, thereby advancing economic opportunity. In putting people to work, she finds inspiration in Depression-era, WPA-style programs that provided jobs, along with lasting improvements to public infrastructure.”

You can learn more about Elizabeth’s Mayoral race by visiting her website at http://www.elizabethdickinson.org/ and follow her on Facebook here, Twitter here, and Instagram here

You can also hear her at the upcoming screening/membership meeting for the 4 CD Green party here

(Photo courtesy Elizabeth Dickinson for Saint Paul)

Greens defend Ranked Choice Voting in Saint Paul 

RCV.jpgGreen Party of Minnesota Chair Brandon Long was joined by Green hopeful Mayoral candidate Elizabeth Dickinson for Saint Paul, Roger Meyer and other Greens at last month’s Saint Paul Charter Commission to oppose the repeal of Ranked Choice Voting.

By circumventing the need to collect signatures to put a repeal of RCV on the ballot this fall, the Saint Paul Charter Commission is doing something that is the exact opposite of one of our Green four key pillars: grassroots democracy.

Ranked Choice Voting supporters gathered thousands of signatures to implement this important electoral reform - which ensures there are no spoilers, candidates run positive campaigns, and a true majority of voters are heard.

When put to a vote, electoral reform won with thousands more Saint Paul voters.

Dozens of those supporters packed last month’s Charter Commission meeting. While the Commission debated whether to stick a repeal straight on the ballot, one commissioner mused: 

"Wouldn't it be fair to make opponents (of RCV) gather signatures like those in favor of RCV?"

That's the least they could do. But let's be honest, the Charter Commissioner Chuck Repke is a paid lobbyist who is more interested in a few Democrat Party insiders having more control over the process than actual democracy.

The next Charter Commission meeting to discuss this issue is scheduled for this Monday, March 27th at 4:30 inside city hall, RSVP and invite friends here.

We will fight back. We will win.

(Photo courtesy Brandon Long)

Green Cam Gordon Criticizes Xcel Energy for Bullying on Bad Bill

CamGordon.jpgFrom Councilmember Cam Gordon:

"I'm very disturbed by the news that Xcel Energy has used its economic power to muzzle fair, if pointed, criticism of it's terrible 'Becker bill'. 

It's bad for the environment and bad for consumers. (And no, Xcel, natural gas is not a "more renewable form of energy" than coal, so get your spokesperson to stop saying it is.)

Xcel, without talking to and over the strong opposition of the City of Minneapolis, went to the legislature to get around the Public Utilities Commission in order to build a new fossil fuel plant rather than exploring renewables.

And when an organization helping with the Clean Energy Partnership engaged in some entirely fair - and Fair Use - satire over these bad actions, Xcel bullied them into silence, using its size and capacity to hire expensive lawyers.

I find this disappointing."

You can read Councilmember Cam’s full statement here.

The Green Party of Minnesota continues to be the fastest growing party in the state

GreenAndGrowing.pngWith three new electeds, three new locals, a 300% increase in our database, a doubling of our sustaining donations in the last six months and now 5,000 likes on our Facebook page, the Green Party of Minnesota continues to surge.

Our Facebook page alone has been the fastest growing in the state for two years running. Social media is a great way to spread our message and so invite your friends to like the page today!

You can follow the Green Party of Minnesota on Instagram and Twitter as well!

We also need your help in maintaining our office administrator position – this will require a $400 increase in monthly sustaining donations.

If only 40 people out of the thousands this email reaches chipped in just $10 a month we could keep our awesome employee Betsy Barnum employed sustainably for the foreseeable future!

Your sustaining donations help us contribute to new locals, donate to candidates, print campaign and educational materials, and maintain an office administrator who coordinates agendas, locals, and fields volunteer and potential candidate requests and inquiries. 

We cannot grow without your help. Pitch in as much as you can today!

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Green Soil and Water Commissioner Lena Buggs fights for a healthy Minnesota

During this year’s Water Day Green Soil and Water Commissioner Lena Buggs was at the Capitol asking the legislator to withdraw bills to repeal critical buffer laws that keep our priceless soil in Minnesota.

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You can watch Lena chat with Minnesota Senator Chuck Wiger on the important work that the Soil and Water Conservation Boards do across our state by clicking the image above!

Green candidate Cheri Honkala joins trans-partisan call for election investigation

CheriHonkala.jpgNumerous incidents of election fraud and voter intimidation were reported throughout the day of the Pennsylvania State Representative special election, March 21, by voters, poll workers, and volunteers supporting the endorsed candidates of all three parties represented.

Because of that, the Cheri Honkala campaign will join the Green Party of Pennsylvania (GPPA) and various local Democrats and Republicans in calling for an investigation into the anomalies and potential illegal actions that took place. An injunction will be filed to void the election and call for new special election. 

Cheri, the Green Party’s 2012 Vice Presidential candidate, ran in a special election where not one, but two Democrats were forced to step down or off the ballot due to corruption leaving only the Republican candidate on the ballot. 

Cheri had been featured on the Sane Progressive, The Tim Black Show, The Jimmy Dore Show and had gained endorsements from Our Revolution, Tom Morello, Rosario Dawson, Josh Fox and raised nearly $100,000 from small donors.

Despite this, 90% of all write-in voters voted for Emilio Vazquez for the 197th District special election.  Vazquez is a nobody at the Philadelphia Parking Authority who was thrown-in at the last minute as a replacement for Frederick Ramirez, a resident of Bristol PA who was thrown off the ballot for living in Bristol.

The outcome seems quite unlikely given that Green Party candidate Cheri Honkala had a significantly-sized ground campaign and produced a laundry-list of observations and video evidence that make this outcome questionable.  Honkala also had 3 months to campaign, whereas Vazquez had barely three weeks.

You can donate to Cheri’s fight against corruption here.

The Dutch Green Party (GroenLinks) wins big in this year’s election, defeating right-wing nationalism

JesseKlaver.jpgThe Dutch Green Party – formed 25 years ago by a merger of communists, pacifists, evangelicals and self-styled radicals – boosted its MPs from four to 14 after a storming campaign by young Party leader Jesse Klaver.

Sometimes compared to Canada’s youthful prime minister, Justin Trudeau, Klaver – who has a Moroccan father and a mother of Indonesian descent, has pushed a bold and unapologeticly hopeful leftist agenda. 

Klaver had this to say to other leftwing parties worried about rising hard right nationalism in Europe and around the world:

“What I would say to all my leftwing friends in Europe: don’t try to fake the populace. Stand for your principles. Be straight. Be pro-refugee. Be pro-European. We’re gaining momentum in the polls. And I think that’s the message we have to send to Europe. You can stop (right-wing) populism.”

This was in sharp contrast to the right-wing Dutch Party for Freedom’s Geert Wilders, often compared to Trump, who campaigned on hateful anti-immigrant and Islamophobic rhetoric.

This is the second time that an international Green Party has stopped the rise of nationalist right-wing populism after former Austrian Green Party leader Alexander Van der Bellen defeated another Trump like figure Norbert Hofer earlier this year.

(Photo courtesy Sputnik)

Green Party of London/Hereforshire win two more seats 

LondonGreens.jpgThe London Green Party is celebrating this week because they just won two new council seats

In Liverpool 19-year-old Kai Taylor beat Labour with an incredible 70%, while Herefordshire Greens took their third seat on the council with Trish Marsh on 40%.

Greens all over the world are standing up for their communities and a future to be proud of. 

Let's make sure we're doing the same in Minnesota.

(Photo courtesy the Green Party of England/Wales)

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