NCGP Co-Chair Tony Ndege Makes the Case for Political and Organizational Independence from the Democratic Party

CHAPEL HILL, February 27—North Carolina GP co-chair Tony Ndege (seated far left) speaks on the topic "Toward a New Party? A Discussion of Leftist Electoral Strategy" along with fellow panelists Lamont Lilly (Workers World Party 2016 VP nominee) and Durham city councilor Jillian Johnson (Durham for All). Panel discussion begins at minute 12:50 of the video below.

Tony's message: The left needs to break free of the Democratic Party and create its own political institutions, like the North Carolina Green Party, so that radical and progressive change won't get squashed within our own organizations by status quo, "pragmatic" Democrats in service to capitalist interests. The Green Party is a member-based, member-funded party with five chapters across the state. Join us at our Membership Page.

Thanks to NC Piedmont Democratic Socialists of America (https://www.facebook.com/TriangleTriadDSA/) for organizing the event.




Western NC Green Party Chairs Speak Out Against Gentrification

Western NC Green Party co-chairs Eddie Julius Milanes and Camille McCarthy speak out against gentrification at Asheville City Council meeting.

Contact: 828-552-4782; wncgreens@gmail.com

 

 


Green Focus Newsletter

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Official Newsletter of the North Carolina Green Party

Issue #1, January 20, 2017

>>Click here to view this newsletter as a PDF.

Inside this issue:

I. Calling all Greens: Join (or re-join) the NCGP!
II. Sixteenth NCGP Fall Gathering brings major changes to party structure and bylaws
III. Upcoming meetings and events for NCGP members and allies
IV. National party updates
V. Meet the NCGP officers
VI. Editor's opinion


I. Calling all Greens: Join (or rejoin) the NCGP!

We've changed the structure of our party. Even if you’ve been a member in the past, please read about our recent structural changes in the next section below and join the North Carolina Green Party by becoming a dues-paying member in 2017. Click here to JOIN or RE-JOIN.


II. Sixteenth NCGP Fall Gathering brings major changes to party structure and bylaws

GREENSBORO—Changes suggested at the Spring Gathering in early 2016 went into effect after a vote at the Fall Gathering held on December 17 in Greensboro. Those changes included the transition of the state party into a dues-paying party, rededicating the party to a spirit of activism and independence from the two capitalist parties, and making permanent our Green Ballot Day signature-gathering effort.

Why dues? Our research into the history and practice of other dues-paying organizations leads us to believe that changing our membership structure is imperative. Greens must fund their own party. No movement or group that claims to represent the interests of people over capital can do otherwise and expect to succeed. The dues-paying progressive parties and union movements of the late 19th and early 20th centuries understood this, as unions today understand it. We must have members on the ground to act, but we must also be able to support party growth and organizing and hire coordinators and directors.

For more discussion on dues, please read our Membership Page, especially the FAQs and the in-depth "Why Does the NCGP Require Dues?" section found there. If you donated to the NCGP in 2016, you will be recognized as a member for the 2017 year. However, we encourage all people to set up a recurring dues payment going forward.

The attendees of the Fall Gathering also effected a partial changing of the guard when longtime former co-chair Wayne Turner stepped down and NCGP membership coordinator Tony Ndege was voted in as state party co-chair, alongside Jan Martell. Jan’s interim position as co-chair after Stefania Przystanski stepped down became official via a vote of members in attendance. Two new officer positions and a media committee were created at the event, and some vacant officer positions were filled by Greens stepping up for the first time to offer service to the state party.

Here's a summary of the positions filled, contributed by former co-chair Wayne Turner:

Co-Chairs: We are fortunate to have elected to the co-chair positions two dedicated and experienced activists: Tony Ndege of Winston-Salem and Jan Martell of Durham. Tony brings with him decades of experience in issue organizing and activist response. He understands what progressives want to see from the Green Party and what policies will be useful in developing a motivated membership. A Stein campaign organizer at the state and regional level, Tony has experience in political campaign management and ground-level organizing for political support. Jan Martell is a founding member of the state party. She has years of experience at both the state and national levels as a delegate to the GPUS National Committee, state Ballot Access Coordinator, former NCGP Membership Chair, and Secretary to the national party. Both co-chairs can be reached at cochair@ncgreenparty.org.

Vice Chair: Michael Trudeau of Cary remains our vice chair. In addition to working for the Stein campaign at the national level as data manager, Michael has been instrumental in moving the state to use NationBuilder as a communication and organizing tool. Michael also monitors and organizes ballot access efforts on the legal and legislative front, as well as on the ground. He's also on our nascent Media Committee, which will coordinate state public outreach and public relations. He can be reached at vicechair@ncgreenparty.org.

Secretary and Assistant Secretary: Newly elected secretary Tommie James of Charlotte and assistant secretary Javier (JJ) Rizo of Carrboro are bringing much-needed organizational support to these positions. Tommie and JJ are moving to archive our 16 years of documentation into an accessible and historical record that will provide us with a timely reference. Both Tommie and JJ can be reached at secretary@ncgreenparty.org.

Treasurer and Assistant Treasurer: Shawn McDowell of Charlotte was elected to the treasurer position by the NCGP Coordinating Committee in the fall. Previously serving as assistant treasurer, he is replacing longtime founding member and former treasurer Kathryn Kuppers, who stays on as assistant treasurer. Shawn, along with Michael, has helped move us to new donation methods to replace our old and expensive interface in use since the party’s beginning. Members and supporters can now place a onetime dues payment or set up recurring payments with PayPal. Shawn and Kathryn can be reached at treasurer@ncgreenparty.org.

Membership Chair: Currently, Tony Ndege is also filling this role. We hope that this position can be filled by someone else in the near future. If you are interested in volunteering for this position or know someone who might be interested, please get in touch with the co-chairs at cochair@ncgreenparty.org.

Local Growth Chair: This important position has been filled by Samantha (Sam) White of Asheville. A member of the Western NC Greens, Sam wants to help new locals get on their feet and running, to add supporters to the party, and to increase our presence across the state. These duties have been unfilled for many years. We look forward to being able to help Greens statewide develop influence in their communities and to increasing our volunteer base. We will provide an email address for Sam in the near future.

Newsletter Editor: C.J. Sellers of Asheville will take on this vital role. C.J. will solicit content for regular communications to the membership and produce a quarterly (or more often) newsletter. Send input or ideas for newsletter content to newsletter@ncgreenparty.org.

Spokesperson: This is a new position created at the fall meeting to provide a reliable public interface between the state party and public. Filled by Eddie Milanes of Asheville, the spokesperson will respond to media and speaker requests. Eddie will be looking for other members with public communication skills to build a bureau of speakers who can respond statewide. Eddie is also a co-chair of the Western NC Green Party, responsible for all counties west of Iredell. An official email address for Eddie will be available soon.

Media Officers: We have a newly formed media group consisting of Michael Trudeau of Cary, Sylvia Arthur of Franklin, and Forrest Hinton of Winston-Salem who, in conjunction with the newsletter editor, will be handling press releases, newsletter content, public communication, and member communication. We plan to have some formal media proposals to implement at the next meeting in spring 2017.

Website Manager: This position is currently filled by Michael Trudeau. If you are interested in volunteering for this position or know someone who might be interested, please get in touch with the Michael at vicechair@ncgreenparty.org. Experience in NationBuilder or ability to learn is a must. HTML/CSS experience strongly preferred.

Fundraising Coordinator: Anna Lee Dillon Ordoubadi of the Triangle area has stepped up to take on this role. A former Mississippi Green, Anna is focused and result-oriented. We look forward to new financial ideas and ways to improve our antiwar chest.


III. Upcoming meetings and events for NCGP members and allies

Events: Greens are mobilizing to attend HKonJ (Historic Thousands on Jones Street), a massive protest for health care justice and civil rights to take place in downtown Raleigh on Saturday, February 11. More information at the HKonJ website. Find information on meeting up with other Greens at HKonJ via the NCGP Facebook group.

Meetings: Members and nonmembers alike are welcome at local chapter meetings of the NCGP. If you're not a member yet, attending a meeting is a great way to learn more and find out if you want to join the party.

* Charlotte – Sunday, February 5, 1:00 p.m. at Newell Farmers' Market, 1706 Rocky River Rd, Charlotte 28213. RSVP. Join the Charlotte Area GP Facebook group to stay informed about meetings and actions.

* Western NC – Sunday, January 22, and Sunday, February 5, both from 3:00–5:00 p.m. at Earth Fare, 66 Westgate Pkwy, Asheville 28806. RSVP for Jan. 22. Join the Western NC GP Facebook group to learn about upcoming meetings and actions.

* Triad – Next meeting is slated for Sunday, February 19, 4:00 p.m. in Greensboro, location TBA. Join the Triad GP Facebook group to stay abreast of the latest details. Last Triad meeting was January 15 at Scuppernong Books in Greensboro.

* Wilmington – Saturday, January 21, 5:00 p.m. at McAlister's Deli, 740 S College Rd, Wilmington 28403. Join the Eastern NC GP Facebook group to keep up with future meetings and actions.

* Triangle –  Sunday, January 29, 11:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at East Regional Library, 946 Steeple Square Ct, Knightdale 27545. Join the Triangle GP Facebook group to learn about future meetings and actions.

* New Bern – Sunday, January 22. Contact co-chair Tony Ndege for information.

Too far? Organize one in your area! Contact co-chair Tony Ndege for information about organizing a meeting or founding a local chapter of the NCGP in your area.


IV. National party updates

• The Green Party of the United States (GPUS) is interviewing for the 2 new staff positions: Political/Field Organizer and a Volunteer/Frontline Communities Coordinator.

• Visit the GPUS website to catch the 2016 Green wrap-up statements submitted from states throughout the US.

Moving forward in 2017, plans and news from state & local parties.

Update on Standing Rock & other pipeline issues. NJ Greens are active in one fight now.

GPUS mobilizing Greens to go to Occupy Inauguration protest.


V. Meet the NCGP officers 

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Jan Martell, Co-chair of the NCGP — Jan has lived and studied in Massachusetts, Illinois, Minnesota, Switzerland, and Quebec but has lived in North Carolina for over forty years. After studying art at Smith College, MCAD, and Duke, she managed to get a job reshelving the fish collection at the Harvard Museum of Comparative Zoology. She has worked as a librarian, helped run a print shop, and done a boatload of freelance graphic design projects in the music and arts community. Mostly retired now, living in Durham, she helps edit a free local newspaper, Triangle Free Press.

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Tony Ndege, Co-chair of the NCGP and interim Membership Coordinator — Tony has been one of the most energetic organizers in the state with an expansive activist and organizer résumé that spans over 20 years. He has organized from the local to national level for social justice, labor justice, immigrants’ rights, against war and military intervention, against the US embargo on Cuba, and against water contamination from coal ash and pollution. He has been a lead organizer for a wide range of major movements and events from NC #BlackLivesMatter to Occupy Wall Street, from the largest-ever protests against Duke Energy (the largest greenhouse gas polluter in the nation) and Bank of America to the largest state and national actions against the second Iraq War, and to the 2012 DNC protests, where he met Jill Stein at the March on Wall Street South. It was through this experience that he decided to support Jill Stein’s 2016 campaign and join the NCGP. While working on the Stein/Baraka campaign, Tony served as the NC State Coordinator and Mid-Atlantic Regional Coordinator, spanning VA through NJ.


Since he has joined the North Carolina Green Party as Membership Coordinator, it has formed a new local and membership has taken a remarkable surge.  Tony also has training and professional experience in music (symphonic and opera), stage, and film. He is a proud alum of North Carolina School of the Arts and UNC Greensboro.

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Michael Trudeau, Vice-chair of the NCGP — Michael Trudeau has been supporting the Green Party since 2000. He's the former data manager for the Stein/Baraka campaign and is serving his second term as vice chair of the NCGP. You can reach him at vicechair@ncgreenparty.org.


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Shawn McDowell, Treasurer of the NCGP — Born and raised in Charlotte, Shawn studied anthropology and criminal justice at UNC Charlotte, graduating in 2005. He has volunteered with Move to Amend, Greenpeace, and Charlotte Peoples’ Power Assembly and been an active member of NCGP since 2013. He accepted the nomination for Secretary that same year and was nominated and accepted as NCGP Treasurer in 2016. Shawn is currently pursuing a master’s in business at Queens University in Charlotte. He shared this memorable quote from writer Chris Hedges: “I will step outside the system. Voting for the 'lesser evil'—or failing to vote at all—is part of the corporate agenda to crush what is left of our anemic democracy. And those who continue to participate in the vaudeville of a two-party process, who refuse to confront in every way possible the structures of corporate power, assure our mutual destruction.”

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Kathryn Kuppers, Assistant Treasurer of the NCGP — Kathryn was involved in founding the Charlotte Area Green Party in 2001. She served as Treasurer of the NCGP from February 2005 until November 2016, when she stepped down to be Assistant Treasurer. She also served for several years as Charlotte Area Green Party clerk, and then as CAGP treasurer. Her main concerns relating to her involvement in the Green Party are electoral reform, separation of church and state, and saving the planet and its nonhuman life from human destruction. She has lived in Midland, NC, 15 miles east of Charlotte, since 1987, trying to lead a simple life.

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Tommie Newton James, Secretary of the NCGP — Born and raised in Charlotte, Tommie holds a BA in cultural anthropology from UNCC. She studied advanced studio arts and art history at Winthrop University and earned an MBA from Queens University. She has worked as an ad artist and a fine artist, a legal secretary, and business consultant in the aviation industry. Tommie has been a campaign volunteer in Charlotte for many years and was a Jill Stein / Ajamu Baraka 2016 campaign coordinator for the Charlotte Area.

Javier (JJ) Rizo, Assistant Secretary of the NCGP — JJ is new to the NCGP and North Carolina after recently moving from Seattle this past fall to Carrboro with his partner. He works as a research coordinator at Duke University in the department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences. JJ graduated from Seattle University in 2012 with a BA in psychology, working in behavioral health research and nursing while at the University of Washington. Relatively new to political activism, he has been interested in politics for a while, seeing the next few years as an opportunity to grow a leftist grassroots movement. He sees the Green Party as a path to enact more democratic, progressive change that respects and works for the benefit of the planet, in  opposition to neoliberalism. JJ also volunteers with Democracy North Carolina and hopes to help build the NCGP into a political force to be reckoned with.  He is helping to organize the Triangle Area Greens.

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Anna Lee Dillon Ordoubadi, Fundraising Coordinator of the NCGP — Anna works as a part-time therapist and musician and full-time mom in the Triangle area. She is excited about the new chapter forming in her area and looks forward to helping build the Green Party at the local and state level.

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Sam White, Local Growth Chair of the NCGP — Samantha is a passionate human and planet health activist, awakened to the importance of political involvement by the election fraud that befell Bernie Sanders. “Tuning into Democracy Now!, The Young Turks, and a wide variety of other unbiased sources helped to clear the fog from the mainstream media’s propaganda,” she says. Her current goals for the NCGP include organizing the party, running for an office position, and implementing her Sustainable Development plan that would transition cities to be self-sustaining and free from the influence of corporate conglomerates and monopolies. Corporate influence, including Citizens United, helps to ensure she’ll remain politically active for awhile, “until true justice and equality prevails.” Some experience that has helped her along the way includes store manager training, yoga and mindfulness teacher training, and many college courses. She holds an associate degree in biology and is a sustainability consultant for individuals, communities, and perhaps, one day, the whole world! Meanwhile, she is working toward a bachelor’s in biological sciences to work in holistic medical research. Her personal and professional goals revolve around humanistic values and “saving the world,” all of which align with the Green Party’s four pillars and ten key values!

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Eddie Julius Milanes, Spokesperson for the NCGP, co-chair of the Western NC Green Party, and Asheville resident — “Along with Michael Trudeau, I created the spokesperson position for the NCGP to speak to the public about our values and discuss what we stand for. Helping promote the party and getting us in the public eye is something I've been wanting to do for quite some time. With the added public role we can better serve our people in getting ballot access in the state and introducing voters to a true party of the people—a party that is grassroots from the bottom up, a party that doesn't take money from corporations, lobbyists, and super PACs, a party that cares about our future and our world 100 percent.”

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C.J. Sellers, Newsletter Editor — Originally from Toledo, C.J. moved south with her family due to the closing of the paint plant that employed her father, who was forced to transfer to the nounion plant in northern Virginia or face unemployment—so her life was fundamentally changed by corporate politics. She’s lived in the South, away from the majority of her family, since 1980 and went Green and began working on Green campaigns for higher office in 2006. C.J. is a queer-identifying, LGBTIQ, peace, voting, and animal-rights activist. C.J. briefly served as co-chair of the Buncombe Green Party before it dissolved and was later reformed as the Western NC Green Party. C.J. designed the logo for that group as well as for the local animal rights advocacy group, Asheville Voice for Animals.

C.J. has over a decade experience as a freelance graphic and web designer, including, a few years as the webmaster/site designer for stopthebombs.org Oak Ridge Environmental Peace Alliance, which has maintained regular protests against the nuclear arms components produced at Oak Ridge National Laboratory since 1988. C.J. also reported local news for a county newspaper, the Grainger Today. Her specialty as a reporter is framing progressive issues for a conservative audience. In the fall of 2015, she organized a multi-participant press conference in Asheville on the topic of the problem of ballot access in NC, featuring voting rights groups and Green candidate Jill Stein, with Bruce Dixon of the Black Agenda Report. In 2016, she co-coordinated a multi-partisan panel on the future of political parties that featured Green and Libertarian spokespersons as well as local politicians Cecil Bothwell and Carl Mumpower. See her opinion column in this issue for a personal reflection on Tennessee and North Carolina politics.

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Sylvia Arthur, NCGP Media Group — Sylvia is helping to organize the Triangle Area chapter. She is from Port Townsend, WA. In Washington she chaired the Statewide Poverty Action Network Coordinating Committee. After coming East about 5 years ago, she volunteered on the coordinating committee of the Ohio Green Party and worked with the membership and public outreach committee of the Ohio Valley Environmental Coalition.  She now lives in Franklin County, NC, and has been active with the Triangle Area group since our March ballot access drive. “My organizing abilities create structures and provide the necessary information for groups to accomplish their goals and increase their capacity. I also like to practice the 3 C’s—cooperating, coordinating, and collaborating—with many other groups in the community so we can build an active voter base that will get our candidates elected.”

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Forrest Hinton, NCGP Media Group — “I'm a gay, Black, outspoken (often aggressively) feminist, with a love for cooking and baking, wine, and answering tough questions most people avoid. I came into the Green Party by way of the Stein/Baraka 2016 campaign. Two particular platform issues brought me to their campaign. First, education. I also believe that education is a fundamental human right and should be available to all. Second, the campaign's approach to foreign policy. No other campaign considered the rights of citizens of sovereign nations when formulating their plan. I'm glad to be a part of an political organization that doesn't compromise integrity for power. Looking forward to many rich and productive years with the Greens!”

 


VI. Editor's opinion

Voting rights had long been my central focus since joining the Green Party back in 2006, and it was a major reason I joined, second to my need as a pacifist to be able to vote for peace instead of never-ending warfare. I moved to NC a few years ago from a Republican-gerrymandered district in east Tennessee, landing in the progressive liberal oasis in the mountains of western North Carolina that is Asheville. I’d fled Tennessee offended by the homophobic antagonistic attitudes and attempted legislation of many of the fundamentalist southern Baptist Republicans common in the rural area in which I lived. Upon arrival here, it wasn’t long before I wished I’d done more research before moving to North Carolina, since much of the rest of the state is nowhere as progressive as Asheville. Not only did it pass a law to prevent gay marriage; it stifled protest with an ag-gag law, passed inadequate environmental reforms in response to a major coal ash spill, and passed sweeping voter legislation that targeted people of color, prompting mass protests and the claim that North Carolina is the new Selma and battleground for civil rights. We know that with Republicans in charge all this time, none of those situations have improved. On the voting rights front, Democracy Now! just last week reported, “In North Carolina, a new report finds the state’s democratic institutions are so flawed, the state should no longer be considered a functioning democracy.” Yet when discussing “democracy,” for most the right to vote third party doesn’t even come into consideration. North Carolina has the #1 most difficult access to the ballot for independents and third-party candidates. You’ll hear so-called realists say you can’t win as a Green. Sure, it’s much easier if we run under the umbrella of either of the two major parties, but if we do, our identity is erased for the average voter since Greens don’t get coverage by the mainstream media—most people don’t know the Green Party exists or what it represents, much less who our candidates are by name. And what they do hear are mostly disinformation to hot-button smears.

Ballot access is crucial here in North Carolina, and it’s a civil rights issue as much as it is for  LGBTIQ and people of color, as the Green Party actively spearheads these and other social justice issues! Justice only follows after equal rights to self-representation. The opposition will not hand us that right. They want to prevent us from self-representation. This is what we’re up against: extreme discrimination. But like the protesters who risk their lives to be seen and heard and speak truth to power, we must grow our numbers and put up a much better fight for minority rights this next election cycle.

This is not a social club. It’s fight or perish—powerless and in obscurity. Speak out, Greens! And when you do, whether you protest or write to your congressperson, or when you publish a letter to the editor (or even if it’s rejected), please get in touch with us and share your experience at newsletter@ncgreenparty.org. We'll listen. We'll share your concerns and organize to ensure others listen, too. That’s the purpose of a political party that’s not beholden to the oligarchy; we exist to empower the individual. That power is granted by all of us joining together and making change happen. We hope to hear from you soon!

To that end, our newsletter needs input from North Carolina Greens! In the future, the newsletter will feature flexible content, including letters to the editor, as well as members' letters to the editor published in NC-based newspapers. Please submit yours. We're also interested in op-eds on the following subjects: NC politics; issues related to any of the Ten Key Values of the Green Party; events or actions for Greens to initiate or get involved in, innovative green projects, from home improvement to social justice; and more. Let’s all pitch in and make this newsletter our own! Contact us at newsletter@ncgreenparty.org.


—C.J. Sellers, editor

Masthead

Editor: C.J. Sellers

Media Committee: Vice-chair Michael Trudeau, plus Sylvia Arthur and Forrest Hinton

Coordinating Committee: Co-chairs Tony Ndege and Jan Martell.

 

Contact us at newsletter@ncgreenparty.org and vicechair@ncgreenparty.org.

The NCGP is on Facebook and Twitter:

Copyright © 2017 North Carolina Green Party. All rights reserved.

 

Become a member of the North Carolina Green Party 

Become a Member of the North Carolina Green Party


Petition and Flyer on Election Day!

Petition and flyer with NC Greens on Tuesday, November 8 (presidential Election Day). Supporters like you across the state are helping to get the North Carolina Green Party and our future candidates on the ballot in this state by collecting petition signatures from registered voters and flyering for Jill Stein outside voting precincts. This is absolutely the #1 day of our petition drive and of the election to collect signatures and to ask people to write in Jill Stein for president. With your help, we can collect tens of thousands of signatures in just one day and get tens of thousands of people to write in Jill Stein. With your help, we can make history in North Carolina and get the Greens on the ballot for the first time.

 

 

Remember, we’re asking you to please take Election Day off work if you can—or to otherwise make arrangements so you can commit to three hours or more of petitioning. Some of us will be petitioning all day. If you can commit to that, excellent! If you can’t, please commit to as many hours as you can.

 

 

On this long instructional page, you'll find:

 

• A link showing all voting precincts for you to choose from for Election Day, November 8.

• The petition to print out. Make at least 10 copies.

• A flyer for printing out that says “Write in Jill Stein for President.”

• Facts to know about collecting signatures.

• Regional coordinators who will answer your questions, share petitioning resources, and provide you with other materials.

• Instructions for returning your petition sheets after Green Ballot Day.

• Contact info.

• A petitioning script and tips for best results.

 

 

VOTING PRECINCTS FOR ELECTION DAY

On Election Day, we suggest you go to a voting precinct near you that you think will be the busiest. Alternatively, simply go to the precinct you vote at. Precincts near you can be found at the State Board of Elections website here: http://vt.ncsbe.gov/pollingplace_search/.

 

 

PETITION SHEET

Download and print out the North Carolina Green Party petition sheet here: http://tinyurl.com/NCGP-PetitionSheet.

 

We recommend you bring at least 10 blank copies of the petition, a few black or blue pens, and at least two clipboards. Polls might be very busy. Two or more clipboards is best to keep signers from having to wait. If you can meet with one of our coordinators prior to Ballot Day, you can get petition sheets from the coordinator.

 

 

WRITE IN JILL STEIN FLYER

While petitioning, you can also tell people to write in Jill Stein for president. Download and print out our “Write In Jill Stein” flyer here: http://tinyurl.com/WriteInFlyer. If you can meet with one of our coordinators prior to Ballot Day, you can get flyers from the coordinator. If Jill gets 2% of the vote in North Carolina, it will result in a ballot line for the NC Green Party. But if she fails to get 2%, then we need to collect enough petition signatures to establish a ballot line. So we are attempting to achieve a ballot line both ways: via 2% of the NC vote and via petitioning.

 

 

FACTS ABOUT PETITIONING

• All voting precincts across North Carolina are open from 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. November 8.

• Any registered voter (Democrat, Republican, Libertarian, or unaffiliated) can sign the petition.

• State law says you have the right to petition 50 feet away from the entrance to a polling station. Usually the polling station staffers will have hung a sign marking the 50 feet or drawn a line on the ground. But sometimes not. Know your rights in case anyone questions you: it’s 50 feet.

• The county name must be written at the top of the petition sheet. Only signers in that county may sign that petition sheet. Bring blank sheets in case you encounter people from other counties.

• Signers must fill out their row completely: printed name, home address, city/town, DOB, signature. Legibility is important. Make sure that they actually sign after filling out the other info.

• Signing the petition does not sign a person up for the Green Party in any way; it doesn’t mean they’re a Green, and we won’t contact them. The petition sheets go to the Board of Elections.

 

 

MEET UP TO DISCUSS GREEN BALLOT DAY & GET MATERIALS

Do you have questions about petitioning or about Stein/Baraka? Do you want to learn how to get as many signatures as possible from a wide variety of registered voters? Do you need free campaign flyers, merchandise, and blank petition sheets? Then please connect with our regional Ballot Day coordinators around the state before Election Day to talk. Coordinators will provide free campaign T-shirts, blank petition sheets, flyers, a petitioning script, and other merchandise (merchandise available on a first-come, first-serve basis) to people who attend.

 

 

Asheville
Eddie Milanes, 828-552-4782, wncgreens@gmail.com

Winston-Salem
Tony Ndege, 336-577-1421, nc4jillstein@gmail.com

Wilmington
Rebecca Stutts, 910-233-2942, rlstutts06@gmail.com

Durham
Jan Martell, 919-682-2472, ninth.st@frontier.com

Carrboro / Chapel Hill
Wayne Turner, 919-491-3186, build4green@nc.rr.com

Charlotte
Shawn McDowell, 704-244-1944, shawn.McDowell1984@gmail.com
Tommie James 704-280-3070, tnewtonjames@gmail.com

Cary/Raleigh
Michael Trudeau, 314-337-2154, mdtrudeau@gmail.com

North Raleigh
Kyra Moore, 984-220-0094, kyra.moore.27615@gmail.com

Jacksonville/Morehead/Onslow

Jackie Lunger 910-546 -9603, jackielunger@gmail.com

Sylva
Tracy, 828-552-4782, tleighmason@gmail.com

Lenoir/Caldwell
Mark, 828-265-6873, mcbartold@gmail.com

Hickory
Tracy, 828-640-2416

 



AFTER GREEN BALLOT DAY

After you’ve collected your signatures for the day, please bring the sheets home, tally up the number of signature you collected, and reply to the contact person who sent you this email to let them know your count. There are two options for turning in your sheets:

  1. Mail the sheets to:
    Ballot Access Coordinator
    North Carolina Green Party
    703 Cleveland St.

    Durham, NC 27701

  2. Meet with a designated representative in your area to turn them in. We'll provide more info on that

    Either way, your contact person will follow up with you.

 

 

 

CONTACTS

If you need help the day of November 8 or have questions beforehand, please try the following organizers:

Jan Martell, 919-682-2472

Michael Trudeau, 314-337-2154

Wayne Turner, 919-491-3186

 

 

 

PETITIONING SCRIPT

We developed the following script after much practice collecting signatures from all kinds of people. This script takes an effective approach that appeals to conservatives, liberals, and leftists alike. Remember that the goal is to get as many signatures as possible; the goal is not to convince people that the Green Party is for them. The script is pasted below. But it's also available for download at http://tinyurl.com/Petition-Script. If you can meet with one of our coordinators prior to Ballot Day, you can get a script there.


PETITIONING SCRIPT

Petitioner: Excuse me, may I have a moment before you leave today?

[[Not "Do you have a moment?" Because most people are more likely to say no, they don’t have time, than to say no to doing you a favor.]]

Petitioner: I'm with the Green Party, and I need to collect signatures from registered voters just so we can run candidates in this state. Right now the state doesn't allow us to run candidates—and we want to and think we should be able to. I'm wondering, if you agree we should be able to run candidates, are you willing to sign our petition?

[[Get to the point. Don't lead with ideology. Frame it as an issue of the state against our freedoms—an idea that attracts conservatives, liberals, libertarians, and leftist people alike.]]

Potential signer: Well, what's the Green Party? Why the Green Party?

Petitioner: The Green Party is a separate political party. We’re not Democrats or Republicans. We believe we need more than just two parties to vote for and that competition and diversity make for a healthy political system. We don't think we have a healthy political system in [State] or in Washington, and so we think a third or fourth party is needed to get the two major ones to change and actually get things done.

[[Again, avoid ideology if possible and get people to sign based on 1) freedom and 2) the need for a change. Most Americans claim they do not identify as either Democrat or Republican even though they might be registered as one, and most think the political system is broken.]]

Potential signer: Well, yeah. But what kinds of things do the Green Party stand for?

Petitioner: We believe in quality education for all people, quality health care for all people, a quality environment in which to live for all people, including things like clean drinking water. We believe these things are rights and that the Democrats and Republicans are not providing them to us.

[[Again, avoid specific ideology or policy if possible. Name positive examples everyone agrees with: Even conservatives believe in quality education and health care, but we don't need to say what exactly we have in mind to achieve those things, unless we’re specifically asked.]]

Potential signer: Well . . . I'm not a Green. I don't want to sign up and get emails from you and stuff.

Petitioner: Any registered voter can sign this petition—I get Democrats, Republicans, and independents who sign it. It doesn't mean you're signing up with *us* or you're gonna vote for us or even that you necessarily agree with all our positions if you sign this petition. If you sign, it just means you think we have the right to run candidates for office and that maybe you think we need more than two options to vote for. This petition sheet goes straight to the Board of Elections. Our party doesn't use the info in any other way, and we can't. The info is for the Board of Elections; all they do is check your name and info against voter registration info in your county.

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PETITIONING TIPS

• Be aggressive but friendly. Smile. In parking lots, flag down cars by holding up a finger and mouthing, "One moment?" and pointing to your clipboard. People will stop.

• Don't discriminate when asking people to sign. Ask everyone to sign. We are continually surprised by who will sign and who won't.

• Don’t lead with “Ralph Nader” or “Jill Stein” or Green ideology. Lead with the oppressive state limiting our right to run candidates for office.

• Carry two or more clipboards with a petition sheet on each one so people don’t have to wait to sign.

• Make sure the signer fills out the row completely: printed name, address, city/town, DOB, signature.

• When petitioning outside voting precincts: If a person is hurrying into the voting station, ask them if you may have a moment of their time on their way out.

• In North Carolina, you have the right to petition 50 feet away from the entrance to a polling station.


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Thanks again for your commitment to petitioning on Ballot Day. With your help, we'll get the Green Party on the ballot in North Carolina, perhaps the most difficult state in the nation to get on the ballot. But we have the people-power to make it happen.

Solidarity,
 

Michael Trudeau
Vice Chair
North Carolina Green Party


How to Write in Jill Stein for President in North Carolina

Jill Stein is the only progressive presidential candidate you can vote for in North Carolina. When at the ballot box, write in "Jill Stein" and nothing more. Your write-in vote will count and will go toward building the Green Party. If Jill receives 2% of the vote, it establishes a ballot line for the North Carolina Green Party so that we can run Green candidates and build the party. Detailed write-in instructions are below and can be downloaded by clicking on the image.

Do not write in VP Ajamu Baraka's name or the Green Party name. Simply write in "Jill Stein" and nothing more for your vote to be counted. Ajamu is still the recognized VP candidate in North Carolina; however, do not write in his name.

Read more

Official Write-In Certification Approved: NOW THE FUN PART!

UPDATE (AUGUST 15, 2016):

Great News! Green Party Presidential Nominee Jill Stein has been OFFICIALLY CERTIFIED as a WRITE-IN CANDIDATE for North Carolina. This means that if you write in 'Jill Stein" instead of selecting one of the listed candidates, YOUR VOTE WILL COUNT. North Carolina uses roughly 70% optical-scan ballots and 30% electronic voting machines, so we will have VERY SPECIFIC information on how to write in Jill Stein for president on both voting methods posted to our site by Sept 15! 

Thanks to the help of dozens of committed volunteers, we submitted nearly three times the signature requirement for a write-in candidate, and we could have gone much farther had we not seen on the state site how many we already had. This bodes EXTREMELY well for the future of ballot access in North Carolina! We can begin collecting petition signatures for the 2018/2020 campaign any time. We will post the link to the petition form shortly. In the meantime, please VOLUNTEER to get the word out about the Jill Stein campaign. If you have Facebook, PLEASE JOIN this group to post events: 

North Carolina Jill Stein Organizers: https://www.facebook.com/groups/nc4jill 

Online Resources / Discussion and Planning Groups

North Carolina Jill Stein Organizers

North Carolina Green Party Facebook group

North Carolina Green Party Facebook page

Jill Stein for North Carolina Facebook page

 


North Carolina Green Party Presents Hard-Won Signatures to State, Still Short of Law’s Requirements

For Immediate Release
Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Contacts
North Carolina Green Party:
Wayne Turner, build4green@nc.rr.com, 919-491-3186

Jill Stein Campaign:
Gloria Mattera, gloria@jill2016.com, 917-886-4538

 

On Wednesday, June 1, 2016, the North Carolina Green Party will present over 10,000 petition signatures to the North Carolina State Board of Elections. The petition, which states that the signatories agree to allow the Green Party to be recognized in North Carolina as a ballot-qualified political party, is still far short of the 89,366 verified signatures required by law.

“Eighty-nine thousand signatures is the equivalent of getting every man, woman, and child in the city of Asheville, North Carolina, to sign our petition,” said Wayne Turner, a co-chair of the North Carolina Green Party. “Why should any party or independent candidate need to gather that many signatures just to run for office? These signatures were gathered with enormous effort on the part of dozens of people, including paid contractors,” said Turner. “But it seems the opinions of over 10,000 of North Carolina’s registered voters simply are not important to the state’s political leaders. Given that state and local elections are easily swayed by much smaller numbers of voters, one would think that 10,000 voters’ wishes would be heard in a democratic society.”
 
Many states, even conservative ones, have much lower requirements. In Florida, party recognition is dependent on filing prescribed paperwork with the Florida Division of Elections. In South Carolina, 10,000 signatures qualifies a party, and continued recognition depends on nominating candidates for federal, state, or local office at least once in every two general elections. In Wyoming, 3,400 signatures would suffice for party qualification, and an equal number of votes would retain party status. In Louisiana, the party pays a registration fee, submits a notarized registration statement, and registers 1,000 voters who identify with the party on their voter registration forms.
 
“This same process must be followed by independent candidates for statewide office as well,” said Jan Martell, ballot-access coordinator for the party. “Past court rulings have challenged this requirement for presidential candidates, but North Carolina remains staunchly opposed to political competition outside of the two-party system. We are pretty much the most restrictive state in the union when it comes to the number of signatures required.”
 
Dr. Jill Stein, who is seeking the Green Party nomination for president, said she was exploring litigation against North Carolina’s ballot-access laws. “Political leaders in North Carolina are denying local residents the most basic aspect of democracy—namely, the right to vote for the candidate of their choice. Our politicians send our military forces to die in foreign lands in an effort to impose the politicians’ version of democracy, but here at home they conspire to make sure the most basic element of democracy—the freedom to vote for a candidate of your choice—is suppressed.”


Announcement: North Carolina Green Party 2016 Spring Gathering

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 The North Carolina Green Party 2016 Spring Gathering will be held at the Rural Advancement Foundation International (RAFI) office, Dan Pollitt Center building, on Saturday, May 14, 2016. RAFI is located at 274 Pittsboro Elementary School Road, Pittsboro, NC 27312.

RSVP here.

The meeting will last from 9:30 AM to 4:00 PM. Breakfast foods (bagels, toast, fruit, coffee and tea) will be available. Lunch will be ordered from a local restaurant. Please RSVP below and indicate whether you prefer vegetarian or vegan fare. Our agenda will be as follows:

AM
9:30–9:45: Welcome and Introductions
9:45–10:15: Local, State and Treasurer reports
10:15–11:00: Summary of 2016-2017 Plans (co-chairs)

  1. 1. Reorganization to dues based structure—increased accountability to membership
  2. 2. Re-emphasis on community involvement—community issue support and grassroots organizing
  3. 3. Independent and non-partisan candidate support
  4. 4. Local organizing—formal vs. informal chapters and possible by-law alterations to accommodate new forms of organizing
  5. 5. Ballot access—public awareness and specific event planning

11:00–11:20: Break—place lunch orders
11:20–12:15: Discussion of plan—member ideas and suggestions (lunch orders at 11:15)

PM
12:151:00: Lunch. If possible, we will schedule a speaker or presentation
1:001:30: Selection of delegates and alternates to GPUS national convention in Houston, TX
1:202:00: Election of officers—all positions are open for nominations
2:002:45: Breakout groups on plan elements

  1. 1. Issue and action recommendations
  2. 2. Independent and non-partisan candidate support
  3. 3. Local organizing
  4. 4. Ballot access plans and procedures

2:453:30: Report back from breakout sessions
3:30–4:00: Wrap up and adjourn. Facility cleanup

In solidarity,

Wayne Turner
Co-chair
North Carolina Green Party

RSVP here.


North Carolina Green Party Condemns Lawmakers on HB2

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For Immediate Release

The North Carolina Green Party (NCGP) stands with the LGBTQIA+ community in condemning HB2, a sweeping ordinance that pretends to legally assign gender based on the bias and prejudice of the GOP-controlled legislature and governor’s office. In an expansive special session, the legislature pandered to the most regressive elements of the state in an election year to undo Charlotte’s municipal ordinance (and eight other municipal ordinances), highlighting the GOP’s contempt for trans and gender non-conforming citizens, workers, and local control.

“Behind the nonsense of protecting women from supposed predation, the real purpose of the special session was to avoid scrutiny of this odious and amoral bill,” said Stefania Przystanski, NCGP co-chair. The smoke screen of the “bathroom issue,” used to provide grounds for the arrest of queer and trans citizens in schools and government buildings, also disguises the bill’s reach. It strips citizens of rights against discrimination based on gender identity or expression and sexual orientation in employment and housing.

“This is a continuation of institutionalized discrimination. Trans and queer youth are already struggling to survive in our education system. LGBTQ persons already experience higher rates of unemployment, homelessness, and violent assault. The rates are even higher for LGBTQ persons of color,” said Michael Dennis of the Green Party’s Lavender (LGBTQIA+) and Youth Caucuses.

HB2 increases the burden on workers as well. It takes away the right of municipalities to set minimum-wage standards higher than the federal minimum. “Many North Carolinians—especially black and brown women—are already being paid poverty wages,” said Jan Martell, co-chair of the Triangle Greens chapter of the NCGP. “Raleigh has stolen the ability for local governments to provide a living wage for working-class communities.”

Additionally, North Carolina workers will no longer be able to sue employers for discrimination based on age, religion, and disability in state courts. This now must be addressed in more costly federal courts that have drastically shorter windows in which to file (6 months versus 3 years). As a final injustice, municipalities also can no longer regulate child labor.

“The legislature apparently feels it must pander to the ugliest and most hateful segments of society to maintain power. Seizing control from local governments and targeting oppressed populations are demonstrations of their intolerance and, ultimately, inability to govern,” said Wayne Turner, NCGP co-chair.

 For more information, please contact:

Wayne Turner (919) 491-3186 or Jan Martell (919) 682-2472


Good News for the Georgia Green Party

After a long lawsuit initiated by the Georgia Green Party, the US District Court in Georgia has struck down the state's undemocratic requirement of 50,000 petition signatures to get on the ballot as unconstitutional. The court replaced it with 7,500 signatures.

Here's the notice in Ballot Access News: http://ballot-access.org/2016/03/17/u-s-district-court-invalidates-georgia-petition-requirement-for-president-imposes-temporary-standard-of-7500-signatures/.

You can't vote for an antiwar candidate, a peace and justice candidate, if state laws keep peace and justice candidates off the ballot. You can't vote for a candidate opposing Common Core and school privatization if those are not allowed on the ballot. Up till now, Georgia's Democrats and Republicans have colluded to restrict the choices of voters by keeping other parties and candidates off the ballot. —Bruce Dixon, co-chair of the Georgia Green Party

Ballot access barriers were enacted with the exact intentions which drove poll taxes, literacy tests, all-white primaries and lynchings for those who would integrate them. Today Judge Story has helped us dismantle another of the bricks left standing in Georgia's Jim Crow legacy; one which has silenced the voices ready to offer a path forward from the crisis we face while the legacy parties squander resources on immoral wars of foreign aggression, sacrifice our health for the profits of the insurance, pharmaceutical and agriculture industries and our policy makers continue to bury their heads on the impact of global warming. —Hugh Esco, co-chair of the Georgia Green Party

Until March 17, 2016, the state of Georgia had the second-highest signature requirement in the nation, behind North Carolina. North Carolina now stands very, very far ahead at about 90,000 signatures required for a third party or independent to get on the ballot. Indiana is now second most restrictive at about 26,000 signatures.

In 2006 the North Carolina Green Party sued the state over the undemocratic signature requirement, but the case was decided in the state's favor.

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