We send you best wishes for a happy, healthy, peaceful New Year — and deep gratitude for your help making it so!
As we begin another round in the struggle, I want to update you on exciting developments in the fight for democracy. Above all, we’re preparing our legal case to defend public funding and ballot access for alternative parties and independent candidates. These are essential to voters’ right to choose. Without that we have just two corporate parties funded by the same economic elites. And that’s no choice at all.
As you know, we are challenging the FEC’s punitive order that I repay over $175,000 in matching funds we used for ballot access in 2016. If allowed to stand, this crushing blow coming five years after an election would be a huge deterrent to future grassroots candidates challenging power from outside of the big-money political machines.
As we build our case in the court of law, the fight for democracy continues on many other fronts. While this work is independent of our 2016 presidential campaign committee, we’re including it here because it’s integral to our shared struggle for democracy on life support.
The fight for Julian Assange’s freedom is a key battlefront in the struggle. I’ve been fortunate to be working with Doctors for Assange to point out that the persecution of Assange is not only a threat to the life of Julian Assange. It’s a threat to the life of our democracy. Assange’s Orwellian prosecution endangers press freedom, judicial integrity and human rights – a triple hit on the foundations of democracy.
As you well know, it’s a sign of democracy in crisis that our political system confines our choices at the polls to the big-money parties that have proven incapable of fixing the debacles they’ve created. As Frederick Douglass said, “Power concedes nothing without a demand”. In our fight with the FEC, we are working to restore capacity for that demand, without which climate, press freedom, public health, access to higher education and housing, a livable economy — our very lives are dangerously unraveling. Here’s an interview connecting the dots between the impending climate end game (with news of imminent sea level rise acceleration), the persecution of Assange, and the imperative for independent politics.
And finally, news to celebrate! Our lead attorney, Oliver Hall, the founder, director and general counsel of the Center for Competitive Democracy (CCD), just added a victory to his impressive record of wins for democracy. On December 31st, CCD and the Libertarian Party won a court order striking down Maine’s prohibitive ballot access rules that made it nearly impossible for alternative parties to gain ballot status. Expanding voter choice at the polls is a win for us all! More about the case here.
Stay tuned for more updates on our fight for real democracy. As always, we deeply appreciate your support!
All my best,
Green Party presidential nominee 2012, 2016