From Green Party of New York <[email protected]>
Subject Calling All Greens: Participate in Revising GPNY Platform
Date February 17, 2021 11:50 AM
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Dear Friend --



The Green Party of New York welcomes your input! GPNY is undertaking a review of our state platform. All Greens are invited to participate in this process. You can find the text of the present platform here: www.gpny.org/our_platform <[link removed]>.



We are inviting all registered Greens in New York State, and GPNY Supporting Members not legally permitted to register, to contribute proposed planks and amendments on the topics you know and care about most. We plan on dividing the platform into sections to focus our attention during specific time periods.



We will first tackle Section I: “Democracy,” which is set forth below.  The deadline for submitting proposals for discussion during this round of platform revisions is April 24. Over the next two years, we will designate the remaining sections to be addressed between each of our tri-annual State Committee meetings. Another round will open up in late May or early June. We are open to proposals about platform planks in other sections at this time too if someone believes a more urgent review is required.



This is a great opportunity for you to help sharpen our message with a statement that speaks to the issues of concern to you. We also encourage Green Party locals and affiliated counties to discuss at their own meetings, and submit their group’s ideas for platform changes.



Registration/Participate in the GPNY Platform Discussion Forum



To facilitate our discussions, GPNY will be using the same online message board we have used previously so users can submit and discuss platform ideas. If you have not previously registered, go to: [link removed]. Please incorporate some aspect of your name in your username. Once you’ve responded to an account activation email, a GP moderator will approve your registration. If you are not known to the moderators, you may be asked to fill out an enrollment verification form <[link removed]>. Once the registration process is complete, you can log in at [link removed], set up your profile and notification preferences, review the instructions,and start commenting on existing planks or suggesting new ones!



If you prefer not to register as a user of the on-line bulletin board, or if you are an ally of the Green Party but not a member and have ideas to share, you may email [email protected] <mailto:[email protected]> or ask a bulletin board user to sponsor and submit your ideas.



Training



If you aren’t familiar with the use of online message boards, no problem! We have recorded a short training video <[link removed]>to get you acclimated.



We look forward to working with you! Feel free to reach out if you have any questions!



In solidarity,



The GPNY Platform Committee



I: Democracy



1. Grassroots Democracy and Ecosocialism



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Introduction: The Green Party seeks to build an alternative economic system based on ecology and decentralization of power. This would require a wholesale restructuring of political control through varied decentralized bodies such as workers' councils, workplace committees, community and neighborhood assemblies, etc. that are empowered to democratically plan political and economic life on an ecosocialist basis. We affirm that this is our ultimate goal and strive to build ecosocialist political and economic institutions as part of a broader movement for change. This includes support for prefiguration, meaning the creation of working models of the type of society that we would like to live in. So, for example, working to create community owned and democratically managed resources such as car sharing or bike sharing programs, community land trusts, libraries of things, timebanks, community solar arrays, vertical farms, fab labs, worker cooperatives, community development credit unions, and local currencies, as described elsewhere in this platform.



The Green Party of New York State supports the following policies:



Citizen Engagement



- Permit initiative and referendum processes in New York State, and its political subdivisions, in which citizens can initiate and vote on proposed laws.

- Participation in every stage of the process should be open to all constituents and the role of money mitigated to the fullest extent possible, through the use of citizen assemblies. Every jurisdiction should have a well-organized, fully transparent, and citizen moderated online citizens' forum for the collaborative drafting, and communal deliberation of proposals, to allow for easy participation in all stages of lawmaking.

- Establish face to face citizen assemblies in each neighborhood and town as the legislative power in society, with legislative authority in their own communities and legislative control from below over the larger jurisdictions (municipal, county, state) with which they are associated. Citizen assemblies should be guaranteed sufficient funding to ensure that they can hire the staff and experts needed to play an autonomous role in the decision-making process.

- Empower citizen assemblies to give binding instructions to their representatives and the use of immediate recall to enable voters to remove elected officials who no longer are representing the will and interests of the local residents.

- Enact participatory budgeting statewide.



Campaign Finance



- Enact real ethics reform to curb corruption in Albany. Ban or limit legislators' outside income and eliminate the LLC loophole in campaign contribution limits.

- Support full public financing of campaigns. Publicly financed candidates should receive sufficient funds to reach all the voters of their district with their message. Candidates should accept spending limits and give up private contributions once they have qualified for public funding. To qualify for public campaign financing, candidates should demonstrate a threshold level of public support, by collecting a reasonable number of $5 contributions during a pre-qualifying period.

- Eliminate “bundled” contributions from PACs.

- Put a limit on how much any candidate can spend on his/her campaign.

- All ballot-qualified parties and candidates should receive free and equal broadcast time on all television and radio stations.



Electoral Reforms



- End partisan control of the Board of Elections and institute rigorous transparency to banish the patronage, unprofessionalism, and incompetence resulting from the current system.

- Form an independent and nonpartisan commission charged with the duty of re-apportioning the legislative districts within the state, in order to end the manipulation of district boundaries by legislators and powers within the dominant parties.

- Enact proportional representation for legislative bodies. Seats are allocated to political parties based on the percentage of votes received. Our winner take all electoral system is fundamentally anti-democratic.

- Enact instant runoff voting for the election of single-member offices (Governor/ Lieutenant-Governor, Attorney General, Comptroller, U.S. Congress, State Legislature). With instant runoff voting (IRV), also called preference voting, the voters rank candidates in order of preference.

- Enable non-citizens to vote in local elections.

- Lower the voting age in New York State to 16. Youth should have an electoral voice as they face adverse consequences from climate change, gun violence, imperialism, austerity, and unsustainable levels of student debt. Combined with increasing income inequality, these factors create a significant reduction in their prospects for a productive and prosperous life. However, we oppose exposing younger voters to military recruitment or other predations.

- Enact same-day voter registration for general elections and eventually move to a more European-style system where citizens of age are automatically registered to vote by default, instead of "opt-in" registration.

- Move the deadline for party affiliation changes to at least 90 days before the first primary election of the year.

- Eliminate the "Opportunity to Ballot" rule and ban "fusion" voting so that candidates are not incentivized to put their name on as many ballot lines as possible in every election.

- Abolish the Electoral College and elect the President by popular vote.



Joint Commission on Public Ethics



- Reform the appointment process for commissioners of the New York State Joint Commission on Public Ethics. Mandate that the commission conducts background checks on the potential heads of governmental departments before they can be approved.



2. Foreign Policy



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Introduction: The Green Party stands for peace and non-intervention in the affairs of sovereign countries. We seek to stop Washington from arming, funding, bombing and deploying troops to engage in proxy wars around the globe. We also stand against Washington’s financial, economic and trade sanctions that harm developing and non-aligned countries (i.e., countries not acting as proxies for the US or other major powers). We stand against perpetual war, the military-industrial complex, and the surveillance state. Through all of this, we seek to promote an anti-imperialist foreign policy. We are committed to calling out war crimes and human rights violations wherever they occur. This includes protecting journalists and supporting whistleblowers who expose such crimes.



The Green Party of New York State supports the following policies:



War and Peace



- The Green Party opposes all U.S. aggression and wars. We call to bring all U.S. troops home now as a vital contribution to peace worldwide. We oppose the crime of drone warfare and call for peaceful settlement of disputes without the use of force. We defend the rights of all peoples to determine their own affairs free from foreign interference and for relations with other countries based on mutual respect and benefit. The Pentagon is the world’s single largest polluter and its budget could be far better used to fund the rights of all, abroad and at home.



Puerto Rico



- The Green Party defends the right of the Puerto Rican people to determine their own affairs free from U.S. interference and calls for the removal of all U.S. bases and implementation of the UN decolonization process. We call for canceling the debts, which have been paid many times over, and oppose use of a control board to dictate to the people of Puerto Rico. We condemn the inadequate U.S. federal government response to the effects of Hurricane Maria. We demand mobilization of state and federal resources to help in restoring basic necessities such as healthcare, housing, electricity, food, water, and sanitation.



Green Party of New York

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