FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, June 6, 2012
Contact: Ben Manksi, Campaign Manager, Stein for President, HQ@JillStein.org
Michael Feinstein, GPCA spokesperson, 310-392-8450 firstname.lastname@example.org
Laura Wells, GPCA spokesperson, 510.504.4254, email@example.com
Jill Stein secures Green presidential nomination with California vote; Top Two Jungle Primary fails voters
SACRAMENTO (June 6, 2012) – Winning 48.6% of the vote in the Green Party primary, Jill Stein clinched the national Green Party presidential nomination on Tuesday.
Unlike the state's Democratic and Republican primaries, which came too late to affect those parties' nominations, the votes of California Greens were determinative for Stein, who won 32 of the 65 California delegates' votes to be cast at the Green Party Presidential Convention, July 14th in Baltimore. With 182 delegates required to win the nomination, Stein now has 194 delegates - over 2/3 of all delegates allotted thus far - and has won 27 of 29 Green primaries.
Television comedienne Roseanne Barr finished second on Tuesday with 40% of the vote and Kent Mesplay of San Diego was third with 11.4%.
Stein, a medical doctor who ran against Mitt Romney for Governor of Massachusetts in 2002, is proposing a Green New Deal for America, that she states will create 25 million jobs and transition the country to a green economy. She also proposes guaranteeing public higher education and Medicare for All, breaking up the big banks, and ending corporate domination of elections.
"Voters will not be forced to choose between two servants of Wall Street in the upcoming election,” said Stein. “Now we know there will be a third candidate on the ballot who is a genuine champion of working people."
Tuesday also saw the dismal failure of California's new Top Two Jungle Primary, which the Green Party opposed in June 2010 when it was placed before California voters as Proposition 14. Voter turnout was a record low 35% of registered voters (according to the Field Poll), contradicting the claims of Proposition 14's backers that the new system - which forces candidates from all parties to run against each other in a single 'Jungle Primary' for each seat - would increase participation by voters.
"As a result of this new system, voters will now have less choice in the November general election," said GPCA spokesperson and former Santa Monica Mayor Michael Feinstein. "The Jungle Primary is a step backward for democracy. We expect that its negative impact upon voter choice and ballot access will lead to its being overturned when it is heard next year by the U.S. Supreme Court. As a positive alternative to increase voter empowerment and choice, the Green Party supports moving to multi-seat legislative districts with proportional representation and ranked choice voting for single-seat, executive offices like Governor and President.
The presence of the Jungle Primary, which makes it virtually impossible for minor party candidates to participate in the general election, already has had a chilling effect on voter choice, as only 17 candidates from California's four smaller, independent ballot-qualified parties ran for district seats, nine of them Greens - the lowest for those offices since 1966, when there were no parties on the ballot in the state except for the Democrats and Republicans, and thus no minor party candidates on the ballot.
Elsewhere, Green Jane Rands finished second among four candidates for Fullerton City Council in a race to replace one of three incumbent City Councilmembers, who were recalled after they failed to accept responsibility for the beating death by Fullerton police officers of Kelly Thomas, a mentally ill homeless man in 2011. "Though not elected, I will continue to advocate for citizen oversight of police, as the city finds ways to right itself since the beating of Kelly Thomas." Buoyed by her strong finish, Rands expects to run again in November when there will be three open seats on the council.
"If history is violence and sex, I'd rather not pay my respects. If I've caused offense, I'm just trying to talk sense. Forgive me if I'm too direct or politically incorrect."