First, A big THANK YOU to everybody who worked to support Jill Stein’s campaign in Colorado, and to everybody (we hope all of you) who voted for her. The Green Party made waves in so many ways this election thanks to you and your support.
Despite the new reality we find ourselves in, with Donald Trump slated to be our next president, our focus as Greens remains largely the same—we will continue building real progressive power within the electoral system while at the same time standing with and elevating people’s movements in the streets.
Many people are in shock after the election, fearing what may come from this new political arrangement. During times of fear and vulnerability it can be tempting to turn back to the policies and leaders of the past, however it is those very policies that brought about the economic and political climate leading to Donald Trump’s election. We must avoid that temptation, instead continuing to build a political force that’s unafraid to assert thepolicies and solutions we urgently need.
The Green Party offers a true progressive party of the left, one that is accountable to the people, not corporations or entrenched political forces. We oppose the neoliberal agenda shared by both major parties: one of corporate deregulation, privatization, and cuts to essential services. Instead, we support a strengthening of our shared institutions for the common good. Our country engages in endless war and empire-building for global dominance and profit. This is abhorrent, unjust and must stop immediately in favor of democratic solutions that originate from and respect the wishes of common people. We acknowledge that climate change is real, and is caused by human activity, and we support aggressive action to move our country (and the world) to sustainable, renewable energy sources. We oppose discrimination, and we favor peace, equal rights, and fair treatment for all people. We support campaign finance reform and grassroots political activity.
It is because of you, the forward-thinking supporters of the Green Party, that we continue to grow. The strong showing for our candidates this year proves that people are waking up to the need for a new, major party to champion our shared values.
Our presidential candidate Jill Stein greatly improved her performance since the previous presidential election. With counting nearly complete as of November 26, the Colorado Secretary of State’s Office reports that Jill received 38,423 votes (1.38%) statewide in 2016, compared to 7,508 votes (0.29%) statewide in 2012. That’s an increase of about 400%! In Larimer County in 2016, Jill received 3,203 votes (1.63%) compared to 651 votes (0.36%) in Larimer County in 2012. Our U.S. Senate candidate, Arn Menconi, received 36,800 votes (1.34%) statewide and 2,803 votes (1.45%) in Larimer County. The Green Party is here and growing.
Although there has been speculation in the media that third parties influenced the election results, Jill was not a spoiler. Michigan and Wisconsin are the only states that Hillary Clinton lost where Jill’s percentage of the vote was greater than the margin of victory. Winning those two states for a combined 26 additional electoral votes would not have been enough to clinch the national victory for Clinton.
The Democrats simply lost. It was no one else’s fault. They ran a bad candidate and their message was misdirected and unconvincing. Their political vehicle is corrupt and broken — they’ve lost touch with the working-class people of this country and turned a blind eye to their legitimate needs. Greens understand that the way forward is not more of the same, and we will continue to assert this understanding in the streets and at the polls. We aren’t going anywhere. We’re here and we’re growing.
As we establish our place in the US electoral system, we must address our archaic and restrictive voting system. An update is necessary so we can freely vote our hopes and not our fears. This election, Maine voters passed Ranked Choice Voting statewide to address this issue. Colorado could do that, too. Here are links to information about Ranked Choice Voting, if you would like to explore what it is and how it can improve the system.
Our continued political engagement is more important now than before, and we hope all of you Greens are thinking about how you can participate. Stay tuned for more ways you can get involved with the Poudre Valley Green Party and other organizing activity here in Northern Colorado; we are already planning our next steps and need you by our side.
Thankfully, the spirit of collective resistance is alive and growing after the election. Let’s amplify this spirit and make clear our opposition to Trump’s politics of hate and fear. Let’s also channel this newfound energy and awareness not into the same structures which have repeatedly failed us, but into building a principled alternative for the future.
Poudre Valley Green Party Leadership Team