The Green Party in the United States hasn’t made much progress at all. It is even seen by some as doing a favor to the Republicans, by displacing Democratic votes. But here it is in Canada, working with another mainstream party, and furthering it’s own goals, too. It’s high time for the Green Party in USA to do the same, and work in a way that doesn’t simply displce a Democrat with a Republican in a tight race. Being seen as the ‘spoiler’ will be the death of the Green Party in the USA. It’s time to work hard to overcome that perception.
In particular, the Green Party should work very hard to target only those who disagree to most with the core values of the Green Party. Just a couple of well-placed examples, where an anti-environment candidate was displaced by Green activism would go a very long way towards making the Green Party’s basic responsibility clear. This will obviously be an uphill struggle, as those who care about the environment can, quite rightly, point to the help the Green Party gave to the election of GWB.
Ian Bailey CanWest News Service; Vancouver Province
Sunday, April 15, 2007
VANCOUVER — Stephane Dion is ruling out any extra measures to help the Green Party beyond his controversial deal with Elizabeth May.
Dion described Saturday his decision not to run a Liberal in Central Nova where May, the Green leader, is seeking a seat as “an agreement between two leaders,” suggesting he was not planning further aid.
The federal Liberal leader was pressed by reporters about the agreement as he attended Vaisakhi celebrations here at a Sikh temple.
During the next federal election, May will not face Liberal competition in the Nova Scotia riding currently held by Conservative Peter MacKay, the foreign affairs minister. MacKay won the riding by 3,200 votes in 2006.
Dion believes May can make a contribution to the green debate as an MP. “For my side, it was important to have her in the House of Commons,” he said.
But the plan has reportedly sparked outrage among some Liberals, who consider it a bad idea for reasons that include leaving the party unable to declare it is running candidates in ridings across Canada.
Jewan Bassra, co-chair of the Dion campaign during the Liberal leadership race, conceded there has been some chatter about the agreement in Liberal circles.
“Some are for it. Some are against it. Some are saying it’s a good deal if our vision is the same, our goal is the same, and the bigger picture is more important than individual leaders or the party,” he said.
Bassra said he would not object to additional agreements.
“If the Green and Dion’s Liberal party have the same goal and same vision, I don’t see a problem,” he said.
Another effect, if Green Party in Canada gains some credibility, is that border areas, especially heavily Democratic ones, could be Green beach-heads. This could happen in a city like Detroit, which is heavily Democratic. A Green candidate in such a position would not be seen a throwing the race to the Republican, because the Republican would never have a chance.