News Release - Tuesday, February 19, 2002

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Green Party

Greens Speak Out in Support of Campaign Finance Reform.

WASHINGTON, D.C. -  Green Party leaders, candidates, and members call McCain-Feingold a first step, but demand stronger measures to restore democracy.

RICHARD A. VIKSTROM, Illinois Green candidate for the U.S. Senate: "If we really want campaign finance reform, let's enact public campaign financing. According to the Supreme Court, money talks. The stolen 2000 Presidential election and the Enron scandal are only the most obvious examples of how our electoral system has been corrupted. The only way we'll change 'cash as free speech' back to 'one person, one vote' is to abolish legalized bribery and adopt the Clean Money and Clean Election public campaign finance system that voters have approved in Maine and Massachusetts. McCain-Feingold may pamper our sensibilities with a proviso banning soft money, but it doesn't go far enough to arrest the insidious hijacking of our democracy by wealthy corporate oligarchs."

DR. JONATHAN FARLEY, Green Party candidate for U.S. Congress, 5th District of Tennessee: "Our birthright, American democracy, is being sold to the highest bidder. The sell-out of American politics will only be reversed when people have a real choice, instead of identical candidates from twin parties joined at the wallet, and compromised by 'gifts' from wealthy elites. Corporations have hijacked our government - and I'm going to fight to get it back. Campaign finance reform doesn't go far enough: we need proportional representation, instant run-off voting, and an election day holiday. Voting isn't just for those who can afford it. It's for those of us who want it. And we must challenge the status of corporations as 'persons,' which magnifies the power of the wealthy to buy off elected officials, granting them all the privileges of citizenship but none of the responsibilities, like having to pay their own debts, pay taxes and face prosecution if they commit crimes." 

BEN MANSKI, Wisconsin Green, member of the national Steering Committee of the Green Party of the United States: "The Enron scandal is as much about the bipartisan failure to defend democracy as it is about a corporate con job on employees and investors. Enron's huge contributions bought influence in the Clinton and Bush Administrations. Enron and other energy corporations took part in numerous secret meetings with Vice President Cheney - the documents from which are now under GAO subpoena -- to help determine Bush energy policy. The Vice President held no meetings at all with consumer and environmental groups -- citizens' organizations that, like most of us voters, can't afford to  buy our way into Dick Cheney's office."

ANITA RIOS, Ohio Green, member of the national Steering Committee of the Green Party of the U.S.: "Candidates should be elected on merit -- on platform, principle, and record of service to their constituencies -- not on the quid pro quo of coaxing checks from corporate lobbies. That's why Greens support caps on spending and contributions at the national and state levels, and public funding of campaigns. It's why the Green Party doesn't accept donations from corporations, and why the national party does not accept contributions over $10,000 per year, less than half of what the new law permits." 

TOM SEVIGNY, Connecticut Green, member of the national Steering Committee of the Green Party of the U.S.: "We must end the sale of our government to the highest bidder. In return for their campaign contributions, special interests receive tax breaks, preferential treatment and government contracts that make a political donation the smartest investment a Wall Street wheeler-dealer can make. We'll never get universal health care, affordable housing, strong environmental protections, or true national security without meaningful campaign finance reform." 

More Information
The Green Party of the United States & 

Center for Voting and Democracy
Information on election reform.

Nancy Allen, Media Coordinator, 207-326-4576, 
Scott McLarty, Media Coordinator, 202-518-5624, 

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News Release - Tuesday, February 19, 2002

Home | Press