Last year the Green Party gained national visibility and reached a peak of 5% support in mid-summer polls. As the election drew closer, support gradually fell to 1.1% on election day. While a number of factors were at play, the lack of ballot lines in several large states was among them.
The 1.5 million votes received by Jill Stein in 2016 is three times her vote total in 2012. It is nine times the votes received by former congresswoman Cynthia McKinney in 2008, and twelve times the vote for David Cobb in 2004. While the Green Party presidential vote in 2016 is only 51% of our vote for Ralph Nader in 2000, it is double the vote for Nader’s best run as an independent.
There is talk of forming a new progressive party, yet the Green Party has consistently outperformed other progressive and Leftist parties and candidates. We have gotten more presidential votes in each election since 1996 than all other left parties combined. The Green Party has also run more candidates and won more seats at every level of government.
Beyond our presidential candidate on 45 state ballots, in 2016 and 2017 we had 25 other statewide candidates, 56 US house candidates, and 400 additional state and local candidates. Eighty of these won elected office.
We are entering a key election year, yet we have remarkably low financial reserves and are facing cuts to our party’s proposed budget across the board. There are a number of states which we could gain a ballot line in 2018, and maintain it through 2020 with a modest vote threshold. These include Idaho where we need 13,800 signatures, Indiana where we need 26,700 signatures, and Nevada where we need 10,800 signatures. These are achievable goals if we can muster the resources to help these states. With your support we can complete 2018 with over 25 retained ballot lines, putting us in a strong position entering the next election cycle.
After a stunning loss in 2016, the Democratic Party establishment elected the same old guard to congressional and party leadership. Meanwhile the Republican Party is struggling to deal with divisions and corruption. Puerto Rico is suffering the devastating aftermath of Hurricane Maria while the US delays and obstructs aid delivery, in a déjà vu of Clinton’s mismanagement of aid to Haiti after the 2010 earthquake. This month Congress passed a $700 billion defense appropriation bill with bipartisan support. This week the Keystone pipeline leaked 600,000 gallons of oil, almost on cue to remind us that the current fossil fuel economy must not continue. Sexual harassment scandals have awakened the public to the need for open dialogue on feminism and power relations in the workplace and in Congress.
The climate is right for Green Party values of social justice, nonviolence, ecology and democracy.
We need your contribution to put these values on ballots across the country. Please step up your support so that we can step up the Green Party’s involvement where it will count the most. Give generously to help us make a Green future possible. Help us make next year a steady climb to overgrow the government.
Ballot Access Committee co-chairs