Congressional candidate Matt Reichel speaks up for peace during the run-up for election for the Illinois Special election to replace Rahm Emmanuel in this video produced by Polidoc correspondant, Kevin Gozstola.
In a significant move for open-election laws, the U.S. Supreme Court today rejected an attempt to overturn a federal Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals’ decision that the state of Arizona could not require independent presidential candidates to register earlier than candidates affiliated with major political parties.Arizona’s petition for certiorari to the Supreme Court had been closely watched after 13 other states supported Arizona’s bid to have the High Court hear the case. The federal civil rights case, originally filed in Arizona federal district court, stems from Nader’s 2004 presidency bid.
Ralph Nader had challenged the deadline, contending it violated his First Amendment rights to free speech and political association. Lead Attorney Robert Barnes of the Bernhoft Law Firm represented Nader before the Ninth Circuit, which overturned the district court and unanimously declared the Arizona law unconstitutional. Nader’s Bernhoft Law legal team successfully argued that requiring independent candidates to register by June was unfair when the two major political parties did not hold their conventions until the fall.
Is Black the new Black?
When Barack Obama won the Presidential election, a shift occurred around the world. Suddenly, a black man attained the highest position of power in the United States and arguably the world. People across America said they had not believed that they would live to see the day when a “black man” would win the Presidency.
In response to President Obama’s surprising and effective campaign, delegates of the Republican National Committee selected former Maryland Lieutenant Governor Michael Steele as its new chairman, hoping to change its brand from that of extreme white-loving Limbaugh loving conservatives to that of minority embracing pro-economic moderates.
Former RNC Chairman Mike Duncan responded to the news by declaring, “Obviously the winds of change are blowing.” Duncan had hoped to have been re-elected.
“It’s time for something completely different,” Steele said at his acceptance speech. “We are going to bring this party to every corner, every board room, every neighborhood, every community, and we are going to say to friend and foe alike, we want to be a part of us. We want you to work with us. And for those of you who want to obstruct, get ready to get knocked over.”
“The RNC isn’t diverse yet,” said CBS News chief political consultant Marc Ambinder. “When people speak of broadening the party’s geographic diversity, they are speaking in code. They mean that the party needs to welcome more moderates; needs to be more forgiving of departures from orthodoxy; needs to be less antagonistic to pro-choicers and gays.”
Special by Babette Hogan
The West Virginia Gubernatorial race is heating up – and it’s coal powered.
Johnson is the only gubernatorial candidate of the three who is against the coal mining practice of Mountain Top Removal (MTR) and espouses a citizens’ extraction dividend, universal health care and free education, amongst other policies deemed unfriendly to big business. He was denied entry to the West Virginia Broadcast Assn., the first and most widely broadcast statewide debate, which pre-empted programming on three network channels. The WVBA defended their choice to exclude the third party candiate on the grounds that the Republican and Democrat were having a “private news event”. Published polls fail to indicate that the ballot qualified third party is even in the race, despite an overwhelming number of people being against MTR, according to a recent poll cited in the Charleston Gazette.
A discerning listener may notice that Johnson has to wait a rather long spell to be invited into the conversation between Governor Manchin, who is widely perceived as a “Dixiecrat” with several scandals floating around him, and pro-unborn life Weeks, who is willing to face up to Manchin, yet remains skeptical of progressive ideals. (Weeks likens Mountain Top Removal to an ” act of Mother Nature”, satisfied that eventually good things will come of MTR, like golf courses, shopping malls and developed communities.)
The first question asked of Johnson has nothing to do with policy, but reads, instead, like a third grade test of state emblems.
The host attempts a gotcha moment. “Could you name three people who you would appoint to Cabinet if you were actually to be elected Governor and why you would pick those people.” Johnson’s response, “I believe I probably could name three people, but if I’m not mistaken, you’re not supposed to be making those decision prior to the election and it’s against protocol and against the law in West Virginia.”
“Let me take another tack on that. Can you name three of the state cabinet posts?” Now, the video of this “debate” is not posted, only the audio, but if you could have seen it, as I had, you would have noticed how remarkably calm and polite Johnson remained in the face of his intelligence being insulted. Curtly after, the host reengages Weeks and Manchin in a policy question.
I was in the press conference room and the two local stations reporters mouths dropped with astonishishment when they heard the obvious bias of the reporter. However, this may not be entirely the host’s own prejudice. Manchin, as the self-appointed head of Public Broadcasting in West Virginia, does have some control.
Earlier in the day, while walking to a local breakfast diner past a park smattered with homeless people, I happened upon a church where a town car sat, a state trooper pacing outside. It was Sunday and service had started. I waited until the service and feast ended for the appearance of what I suspected would be Governor Manchin. Indeed, he did appear and when I approached him he set his face in a practiced friendly public performance smile. I asked him as he walked firmly to his polished coal black car, “Governor, what do you think about the recent report of vote switching in the early voting booths.” He marched sternly on with a grimacing smile, “You should go inside (the Church) and try some baklava.”
While I admit that addressing someone about politics after they have come out of Church might appear disrespectful, it wasn’t his church; he was just polticking. So, I ask again Governor, “Those machines that you bought when you were Secretary of State, doesn’t it concern you that they are apparently switching the vote?”
We had a chance to interview Manchin and Weeks after the debate, but both candidates refused. Manchin then cornered Johnson in one side of the room, keeping his back to us enforcing his view that MTR was essential. Weeks, wearing the soft silver new-born feet pin of a pro-lifer/anti-choicer, refused because of his concern that “environmentalists” misrepresent him.
Filed under: campaign finance reform, corporate media, Jesse Johnson, West Virginia Governor | Tagged: coal, green, mountaintop removal, MTR, sustainability, Third Party, two-party system, West Virginia | Leave a Comment »
Independent Vice Presidential Running Mate to Ralph Nader, Matt Gonzalez responds to Gov. Sarah Palin and Sen. Joe Biden’s debate. Gonzalez emphasizes that the two war vested candidates do not offer the American people a pro-peace choice and that both parties are complicit in the economic crisis due to their failure to properly regulate the systems with which they were entrusted.
Filed under: 2008 Election, debate, Matt Gonzalez, Ralph Nader, third parties | Tagged: Commision on Presidential Debates, debate, fair and equal, Matt Gonzalez, Ralph Nader, Third Party | Leave a Comment »
What these two Presidential candidates share in common, aside from a desire to reform Washington D.C. is a history of Georgia politics. Opposite on social issues, their coincidental time in office says a lot about the districts and times they represented. Now, they carry these differences into the Presidential arena.
At a recent press conference called by Libertarian-leaning Republican Ron Paul, McKinney appeared along with Independent candidate Ralph Nader and Constitutionalist Party Chuck Baldwin. Bob Barr chose to not share the stage despite agreement on the four principles agreed upon by the third party candidates. According the Atlantic Constitution, Barr’s campaign spokesperson Andrew Davis said “Bob had a press conference right after that one,” and “He didn’t want to dilute his message by being on the same stage as people like Cynthia McKinney, who is completely opposite of what a Libertarian is.”
Yet, Ron Paul and the other three candidates understood the need for a unity of the smaller parties in order to break the stranglehold of the two major parties on the substantive content of the political debates, without which voters do not have an opportunity to critically evaluate platforms outside of the corporate influenced parties.
Here’s the link to the CSPAN recorded Press Conference:http://www.c-spanarchives.org/library/index.php?main_page=product_video_info&products_id=281024-1
Filed under: 2008 Election, fairness doctrine, GPUS, media reform, Presidential Candidate, Ralph Nader, third parties | Tagged: 2008 Election, Bob Barr, Chuck Baldwin, Constitutional, CS, CSPAN, Cynthia McKinney, debate, Georgia, Green Party, Libertarian, Presidential Candidate, Ron Paul, Third Party | 1 Comment »
Filed under: 2008 Election, Cynthia McKinney, debate, electoral reform, GPUS, Green Party, Presidential Candidate, Ralph Nader, third parties | Tagged: 2008 Election, anti-corporate, Anti-War, Chuck Baldwin, Cynthia McKinney, debate, duopoly, electoral reform, Green Party, media access, Ralph Nader, Ron Paul, Third Party | Leave a Comment »
Cynthia McKinney met an enthusiastic crowd at the Green Party’s National Convention on Friday, July 11 on the eve of her nomination as the Presidential candidate. She went on to capture the nomination the following day and presented hip-hop activist Rosa Clemente as her running mate.
This video is of her introductory remarks, making her final public bid for the party’s nomination.
Filed under: 2008 Election, Cynthia McKinney, GPUS, Green Party, Presidential Candidate | Tagged: Cynthia McKinney, Green Party, hip-hop activism, Political Convention, Presidential Candidate, Rosa Clemente, Third Party | Leave a Comment »
Democracy Now Discusses Significance of Historic Run with Green Party Presidential Candidate McKinney
This video, while two weeks old, is still timely, given the concern of little media attention provided to a third party villified for having “spoiled” the election in 2000. Green Party Presidential Candidate Cynthia McKinney speaks with Amy Goodman about the international significance of the Green Party and the responsibility the Party has to state its case and be heard. Vice-Presidential Running Mate, Rosa Clemente, who is a hip-hop activist and journalist, also spoke to Goodman about the media “whiteout”, a term used to describe the perceived suppression of the voices of people of color by media gatekeepers .
Filed under: Cynthia McKinney, DemocracyNow, GPUS, Green Party, Rosa Clemente | Tagged: Cynthia McKinney, Democracy Now, female Presidential candidate, Green Party, media access, media bias, Rosa Clemente, spoiler, Third Party, whiteout | Leave a Comment »