Who: Howie Hawkins, candidate for the Green Party nomination for president
What: Meet and Greet
Where: Wil-Mar Neighborhood Center, Youth Room, 953 Jenifer St, Madison
When: 7:30 PM – 9:30 PM, Wednesday, March 11, 2020
Media Availability: Hawkins will be available for interviews by phone or in person in Madison in the morning and early afternoon on Wednesday and Thursday, March 11 and 12, as well as at the meet and greet Wednesday evening.
Howie Hawkins was the first candidate in the US to campaign for a Green New Deal in 2010 while running for governor of New York. The Green New Deal became the Green Party’s signature issue nationally in the 2010s as the Green presidential nominee, Jill Stein, made it the central theme of her 2012 and 2016 campaigns.
A retired Teamster, Hawkins was the Green Party nominee for New York governor in 2010, 2014, and 2018. He received enough votes each time to secure a ballot line for the Green Party. After his 5% vote in 2014, a number of Hawkins’ demands that Governor Andrew Cuomo had previously refused to support were adopted, including ban on fracking, a $15 minimum wage, and paid family leave.
The leading policies in Hawkins’ platform focus on three life-or-death issues: an Ecosocialist Green New Deal to address the climate crisis, an Economic Bill of Rights to end poverty and declining working-class life expectancies, and Nuclear Disarmament Initiatives to end the new nuclear arms race and move toward complete global nuclear disarmament. He is also highlighting electoral reforms to create a multi-party democracy in America, including proportional representation in Congress and a ranked-choice national popular vote for president.
Hawkins became active in the movements for civil rights, against the war in Vietnam, and ecology as a teenager in the San Francisco Bay Area in the 1960s. He became committed at that time to independent working-class politics for participatory democracy, democratic socialism, and ecological sustainability.
One of the co-founders of the Green Party in the US at its first national meeting in St. Paul, Minnesota in August 1984, Hawkins has also been a constant organizer in the peace, labor, and environmental movements.
To progressive pundits like Noam Chomsky who have advised Hawkins to support the Democratic nominee by only running in the “safe states” and not in competitive “battleground states,” Hawkins has replied that every state is a battleground for the Greens where they confront Democrats as well as Republicans who oppose Green peace, economic justice, and environmental demands.
Hawkins’ campaign is currently petitioning qualify the Green Party on the ballots of all 50 states and DC. He is the only candidate in any party seeking to qualify for federal primary matching funds.
His campaign also seeking to build more independent left solidarity. He has already received the nomination of the Socialist Party USA and is seeking the nomination of independent state progressive parties in several states that permit presidential fusion tickets. He won the Green Party primaries on Super Tuesday in California and North Carolina.
State Green Party primaries, caucuses, and conventions will continue through the spring and early summer. The Green Party presidential nomination convention will be in Detroit, July 9-12.