Sunday, October 22, 2006

PLEASE READ THIS E-MAIL FROM Traci Confer, Platform Committee Co-Chair of the Pennsylvania Green Party 

In an attempt to sort through all the conflicting information available about what has happened to Romanelli, I directly contacted members of the PA Green Party. Traci Confer sent this e-mail to share with everyone. Her closing sentence before signing off rings in my ears. See for yourself, and many thanks to Traci for all she does, and for sharing this information with us, CAConrad

What Ian Keenan quoted is very accurate. "Lack of interest" was certainly NOT accurate!

67,000 signatures was a staggering number of signatures to collect - most years we need to get 20-25,000, and think that's a lot. The state calculates the signature requirement as 2% of the votes cast for the highest vote-getter in the last state-wide election. The courts say that judicial retention elections (as in 2005) don't count. Casey was the highest vote-getter in 2004 with a record-setting 3+ million votes.

So it's because of Casey that we had to collect that many, AND because of Casey that we were kicked off the ballot.

It wasn't just our Senate candidate who was forced off the ballot - our Governor and Lt Gov. candidates were challenged as well. They couldn't face the risk of bankruptcy if the judge was unfavorable, so they withdrew.

Just so you know why running state-wide candidates is important to the Green Party...

According to PA election law, a minor party has, in the last state-wide election, a candidate getting at least 2% of the vote. If we don't run state-wide candidates, then we can't get 2% of the vote, so we do not count as a "party". That means we'll no longer be listed as an option on voter registration forms and we'll lose the ability to nominate candidates in Special Elections without having to collect signatures.

I could complain at length about the Dems determination to invalidate signatures on any little pretext (even when the signer was clearly a registered voter), and about the inadequate search capabilities of the voter database that we were forced to use, but I would sound very bitter indeed.

It is experiences like this signature challenge that reveal that the government views democracy as an enemy.

Traci Confer
(One of the many who worked on the signature defense.)

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