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Green Party LogoGreen Party: Americans should learn from Greek, French voters who rejected austerity


For Immediate Release:
Thursday, May 10, 2012

Scott McLarty, Media Coordinator, 202-518-5624, cell 202-904-7614,
Starlene Rankin, Media Coordinator, 916-995-3805,

2012 Green Presidential Nominating Convention, July 12-15 in Baltimore, Md.
Media Credentialing page

WASHINGTON, DC -- Green Party candidates and leaders said today that Americans should learn something about democracy and change from voters in Greece and France, as well as Iceland, in recent elections that overturned their respective governments.

US Greens also congratulated UK Greens, after strong Green advances in recent local elections in England and Scotland (

Carol Brouillet, Green candidate for the US House in California's 18th District (

"Greek and French voters said, we don't have to accept austerity measures to pay back bailouts for bankers whose recklessness and fraud damaged the US economy. Americans shouldn't have to accept such measures either. Democratic and Republican politicians have enacted policies that enrich the one percent while demanding sacrifice from the rest of us. Working people are losing their job security and financial stability. Benefits, workplace organizing rights, and even Social Security and Medicare are facing the axe. We're seeing a redistribution of wealth -- from the bottom to the top. Both parties have been responsible for policies that have widened the gap between the superrich and the rest of us. This is why people in the Occupy movement are protesting in the streets. We urge Americans to carry that outrage to the voting booth and put an end to the exclusive rule by two corporate-money parties."

Laura Wells, 2010 Green gubernatorial candidate in California:

"Newly elected French President Hollande said he would introduce two new higher tax rates, implement a new financial transaction tax, and increase capital gains taxes on banks ( This is a balanced approach: give some austerity to those who've been getting the prosperity. As for the banks, let's go one better and implement publicly owned banks so that we stop paying interest to the publicly bailed-out banks. We can create state banks patterned after the successful Bank of North Dakota, as well as municipal banks. We can invest in our states and cities, not in Wall Street. We can declare a halt to home foreclosures and restore the Glass-Steagall Act. We can repeal Taft-Hartley and protect the rights of working Americans. We can save Social Security with a very modest rise in the cap for the wealthy on contributions. We can expand Medicare to cover everyone."

Anthony Gronowicz, Green candidate for the US House (14th Congressional District), running against incumbent Democratic Joseph Crowley who voted for the Iraq war (

"Politicians from the two established parties, as well as the major media, like to judge the US economy according to stock market performance, profit margins of top companies, and GDP. In the Green Party, we judge the economy according to the level of financial security for working people, access to health care, basic services for the needy, and the state of the environment. Anyone who still believes Democrats offer a program of change should remember that President Obama approved the Wall Street bailout, stacked his administration with Wall Street operatives, and spent his first term capitulating to the GOP. While Republican Gov. Scott Walker went on the rampage against public-sector workers' job security, benefits, and union rights in Wisconsin, Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo was doing the same thing in New York. (The billionaire Koch brothers, who promoted the attack on public sector employees, donated $92,000 to Cuomo, more than double the $43,000 they gave Walker.) Democrats are now boasting of an economic recovery that's really benefiting the small percentage of America's wealthiest, who've enjoyed 93% of income gains in the recovery's first year."

Natale "Lino" Stracuzzi, DC Statehood Green Party candidate for nonvoting Delegate for the District of Columbia in the US House of Representatives (

"We're seeing political changes throughout the world, as more and more people reject neoliberal politicies of deregulation, privatization, international trade pacts that favor top corporations, subsidies and bailouts for the superrich, and austerity for working people. What happened in Greece this past weekend reflects what happened in Iceland two years ago, when Icelanders refused to pay the debt incurred by banks, tossed rightwing politicians out of office, and rewrote the country's constitution in the 'Kitchenware Revolution' -- which the US media has virtually ignored. Americans have the same power to effect similar change, but it won't happen as long as we keep electing the same politicians from the same political parties."

See also:

"Green Party Says Cuomo Fiscal Plan Recycles Failed Policies"
Press release from the Green Party of New York State, January 6, 2010

"Striking it Richer: The Evolution of Top Incomes in the United States
(Updated with 2009 and 2010 estimates)"
By Emmanuel Saez, E. Morris Cox Professor of Economics, University of
California at Berkeley, March 2, 2012

"Why America's Rich People Are Better Than Everyone Else's"
By Paul Buchheit, Nation of Change, May 8, 2012

2009 Icelandic financial crisis protests

"Corporations Win in Battle Against Investment Regulation"
By Isolda Agazzi, Inter Press Service, May 7, 2012


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