Wisconsin ballot initiative urging withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq passes in 24 out of 32 communities; 'Bring the Troops Home' campaign was led by Greens
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Green Party leaders across the U.S. congratulated Wisconsin Greens for their leadership in the campaign to pass antiwar ballot initiatives in 32 Wisconsin communities.
The nonbinding initiatives, which called for withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq, passed in 24 (75%) out of 32 cities, towns, and villages where the measure appeared on the ballot. For a breakdown of Tuesday's vote, visit <http://www.madison.com/tct/news/index.php?ntid=78736>.
"The Green Party is proud to have initiated the effort that achieved this victory at the polls," said Marc Sanson, co-chair of the Green Party of the United States. "The Wisconsin Green Party, among the most successful and well-organized in the U.S., deserves full credit for introducing and leading the 'Bring the Troops Home' campaign. Working with other antiwar groups, Greens used their leadership and experience in organizing political campaigns to win the support of a 63% majority of those who voted."
Greens, expressing hope that other towns, cities, and states will entertain similar ballot initiatives, stressed that such measures carry more weight than opinion polls -- which have also consistently shown dwindling support for the occupation of Iraq.
"After more than 2,300 U.S. troop deaths and tens of thousands of Iraqi civilian deaths, and as Iraq moves closer to civil war, more and more Americans feel betrayed by the White House," said Ruth Weill, co-chair of the Wisconsin Green Party. "The Wisconsin initiatives are a mandate to save lives."
Among the supporters of the antiwar initiative was Rae Vogeler, Green candidate for the U.S. Senate <http://www.voterae.org>.
Ms. Vogeler traveled the state campaigning for its passage.
"The disaster of the Iraq War is a political crisis -- the result of deception, radical ideology, militarism, and greed on the part of Republicans and many Democrats," said Jill Bussiere, co-chair of the Ahnapee River Green Party, which organized the coalition that got the question on ballots in nine municipalities in Door and Kewaunee Counties. "The first step in reversing prowar politics is street protest; the next step is victories like the Wisconsin plebescite. Ultimately, we need to unseat all those Republicans and Democrats who made the war possible, and replace them with candidates -- such as Greens -- who are dedicated to peace. And we need to enact the kind of democratic reforms that will prevent such wars in the future -- especially removing the power of Exxon-Mobil, the Carlyle Group, Halliburton, and other corporations over public
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