Sunday, April 13, 2008

Green Party: Rising to Challenge

Think Green.

The Green Party of Arkansas has nominated candidates to oppose Democrat Mark Pryor, Republican Congressman John Boozeman, and Democratic Congressman Mike Ross. They indicate they will also mount challenges to Democratic Congressmen Vic Snider and Marion Berry.

I find this development interesting for at least two reasons. One is that the state Republican party failed to find any challengers to any of the Democratic members of Congress or Pryor. It seems the Greens will challenge them all. Conversely, the Democrats failed to find anyone to challenge Republican John Boozeman, but the Greens did. Are the Green's on the way to becoming the state's second party? Not until they start winning some offices, but I find it telling that the two establishment parties don't make it a priority to challenge one another's incumbents.

The failure of the two establishment parties (we can define "establishment parties" as those whose political conventions are paid for with taxpayer dollars)to oppose each other's incumbents actually gives an opening to a third party because one can vote for them without fear of throwing the election to another party whose nominee you care for even less. Sometimes I get the impression that the insiders of each political party have more anger and animosity towards the reform factions in their own parties than they do for the insiders of the other party. Top Democrats and Republicans seem to get along with each other pretty well, it is the "riff-raff" on their own side that they get ugly with.

If the Green Party is rising, it is probably a bigger threat to the Democrats than it is a threat to replace the GOP as Arkansas' second party. They seem to know it too, because they took the person who so far looks like their best candidate- Rebecca Kennedy, and are running her against the least-liberal Democrat, Senator Mark Pryor. Kennedy is still overmatched against Pryor, but I thought she handled herself very competently when she was their candidate for Attorney General in 2006.

On the other hand, they seem less interested in mounting a serious challenge to Republican John Boozman. They are running a 27 year old graduate student against him who describes himself as a "fiscal conservative" who wants the federal government to provide free health care for all, address climate change, and fund a whole lot more government programs. He needs to look "fiscal conservative" up in the dictionary. I don't think it means what he thinks it means. Still, my point is they seem to be looking for good candidates to oppose the Democrats. For the Republicans, they just want to make sure there is some kind of opposition.

4 Comments:

OpenID szechuanpork said...

Is there a place to view the ballots online?

5:06 PM, April 13, 2008  
Blogger Mark Moore (Moderator) said...

A good question. Anybody know if the Ark. Secretary of State has this somewhere on their site or does each local paper put it together from county clerk filings?

8:17 PM, April 13, 2008  
Blogger Rebekah Kennedy for U.S. Senate said...

Information on the layout of the ballots come from the counties. However the Democratic, Republican, Independant, Non-partisan and Write In candidates are listed at arelections.org, which is run by the Secretary of State's Office. Green Candidates are not listed. Current Green candidates are Rebekah Kennedy for U.S. Senate, Able Tomlinson for Congress (3rd district) and Joshua Drake for Congress (4th district). Additional candidates will be named at the second session of the Green State Convention on June 21st in Little Rock. Details for the June session will be posted on arkgreens.org when they become available.

7:05 AM, April 14, 2008  
OpenID szechuanpork said...

Thanks

10:23 AM, April 14, 2008  

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