Proposal To Adopt A Timeline For Revising The USGP Platform

Platform Committee

Holly Hart,
Budd Dickinson,
Floor Manager: Anita Rios, (Please send your votes to Anita) 419-243-8772

Discussion: 3 weeks: Aug 13-Sep 1
Vote: 1 week: Sep 2-8


Cycle I
September, 2002 -April 30, 2003: Input
May 2003 – July 31, 2003: Editing, work by platform committee

Cycle II (may be amended, pending date of nominating convention)
August , 2003 – January 30, 2004: Rough draft circulated to state Green parties; input; new material accepted through December 31, 2003
February, 2004 – April 15, 2004: More editing, work by platform committee; circulation of final draft platform
April 15, 2004 – July 15, 2004 (approx): Final discussion period

This proposal offers a time frame for submissions, revisions and amendments of material to the GP-US Platform; and, the process through which material may be submitted and approved. This is preceded by an overview which explains what factors went into its design.

This proposal is intended to facilitate the continued development of the GP-US Green Platform (the document that, in its initial 1996 appearance, convinced Ralph Nader to run as the Green Presidential candidate!); and to further increase broad participation by Green membership, remaining open and accountable to the general membership and state Green
parties. Our goal is a process that will encourage grassroots participation, from the local and state levels.

To facilitate a clear and accountable submissions process, the platform committee has created:
– The Platform Template through which we hope 99.9% of all submissions will be sent. This is available in an online version; hard copy submissions may also be sent to an address forthcoming.

– The Platform Forum is an online bulletin board, which will eventually include discussion and work space for platform committee members engaged in compiling and editing submitted material. The Forum also offers a bulleting board open to all interested Greens, for discussion and possible development of platform issues and material.

To help ensure that all state Green parties made aware of the platform work, and members enabled to participate, we will ask each state that does not have a member on the platform committee to designate a member to act as a state platform contact.

The platform committee will continue to work online via our committee listserv, via the bulletin board work space and through periodic conference calls.

Finances: the web design work has been paid for. We will be submitting a new budget to the SC and CC shortly.

REFERENCES: The current GP-US Platform is available at

Those interested in the Platform Forum may register by clicking on the appropriate link, either through the GP-US web page, or the Platform web page. Follow the instructions, and check out the Forum.


The GP-US Platform Committee is charged with the task of drawing up a Timeline and Process for Platform submissions and revisions, starting from the time the proposal is adopted to final approval of the revised Platform at the 2004 Presidential Nominating Convention. The current plan is based on the timeline and process that took place during 1998-2000, and should make clear committee members’ continuing commitment to a process that provides the opportunity for discussion, deliberation, debate and decision-making at the grass-roots level.

This proposal was developed by consensus of the Platform Committee through a series of conference calls and e-mail discussion, sent to the COO list on July 9, 2002, and distributed to CC delegates in attendance at the mid-term convention in Philadelphia as part of the Platform Committee Report.

The Platform Committee held two meetings in Philadelphia. At our second meeting on Saturday, July 20, 2002, the Platform Committee agreed by consensus to adopt this slightly revised version to submit to the Coordinating Committee for approval.

In drawing up the 2002-2004 Timeline/Process, committee members took into account several factors. We felt it was important to take seriously the recommendations of those members who had been on the committee during the 1998-2000 process. We responded, as well, to suggestions and requests that had been brought to our attention from the post-2000 Green conventions in Hiawassee and Santa Barbara, and during the past year. Our goals have been: (1) to improve the efficiency and accountability of the process; (2) to involve increasing numbers of Green participants; and (3) increase public awareness of the Green Party Platform.

These recommendations include (1) that submitted material will have been approved by at least one state party prior to being submitted to the Platform Committee; (2) that an online interactive means of discussion for general membership be provided; and (3) that there be a template that will help ensure that submissions are clear and will let committee members know what part of the platform submissions are intended to address or whether the material is entirely new; and (4) that we have a final draft available about three months before the Nominating Convention for state and delegate review.

Committee members reviewed and discussed several possible timelines. The challenge was to balance the wish to allow as much time as possible for new material to be presented with the wish to have enough time for state review of new material. Also, committee members need to have a reasonable amount of time to prepare submitted material for review.

The committee decided on a “two-cycle” timeline, which will allow the submission of new material as late as December 31, 2003.

To help ensure reliable and accountable communications between the Platform Committee and state Green parties, each state party that does not have a member on the Platform Committee will be asked to designate a platform contact, or “liaison.” They will be responsible for making sure communications flow smoothly between their state parties and the Platform Committee, and will be responsible for submitting approved material to the committee.

Budd Dickinson, co-chair, GP-US Platform Committee
Holly Hart, co-chair, GP-US Platform Committee


In accordance with the Bylaws of the USGP, revisions to the Green Party national Platform will be voted upon at the National Convention in 2004. The following process and timeline is intended to set forth guidelines for open, inclusive democratic discussion and a deliberative process leading to the Convention. The Platform Committee recommends a two-cycle process, each cycle being one year. Our aim is a process that will provide for deliberation over time from as many Greens as possible and will prevent a small group of people from unduly influencing it.

– The first cycle will consist of an 8 – month open period for submissions (September 2002-April 2003), followed by the 3-month period for the Platform Committee to compile, edit and produce a First Draft by July 2003.
– The second cycle will consist of a 6-month period for review of the draft by the state parties (July, 2003 – January 2004), followed by a 10-week period for the Platform Committee to compile and edit a Final Draft by April 15. Assuming that the 2004 nominating convention will be in mid-July, this gives states 3 months to review it and for CC delegates to be prepared for a vote.

I. September, 2002 – April 30, 2003 
After approval of the process/timeline at the 2002 mid-term convention, an open submissions period begins. Proposed revisions to the Platform are received by the Platform Committee. State Green parties are encouraged to discuss and debate proposals at the grassroots level and submit their proposed revisions to the Platform Committee. An ‘interactive’ template for online/email submissions will be distributed to state Green parties and to state Green organizations if there is no state party. A postal mail box will also be made available for hard copy submissions.

The Platform Committee will track and organize submissions. They will also ‘recycle’ submissions: 1) that come directly from individual Green party members back to their state parties to encourage further discussion and debate; 2) for clarification, if needed.

The Platform Committee recommends that submissions be no longer than 750-1000 words. Supporting material can be submitted in the Comments section of the template.

II. May 1 – July 31, 2003 
Platform Committee reviews, organizes, and edits proposed revisions for distribution to state Green parties. A First Draft of a revised platform will also be distributed. This likely will not be a single coherent draft. For example, it will likely contain alternative viewpoints on various subjects, that will have to be resolved in the Final Draft.

III. August 1, 2003 – January 30, 2004 
State Green parties review the first draft and submit comments and proposed language revisions to the Platform Committee. New submissions will be allowed in the second cycle through December 31, 2003. After that only comments on previous submissions will be entertained. The new submissions will be sent out for review during the cycle as they come in.

IV. February 1 – April 15, 2004 
Platform Committee reviews states’ input and compiles a Platform Report and Final Draft Platform and submits them to the state parties. This will serve as a basis for final discussion and approval at the Convention.

V. April 15 – July 15, 2004 
Final discussion period. No new submissions. Proposed amendments to Final Draft language only.

The second cycle is organized on the premise that the Presidential Nominating Convention will be held in July, 2004. If the convention is held earlier or later, the second cycle will be altered accordingly, each segment reflecting a proportion of the cycle similar to the current proposal.