Howie Hawkins won the Green Party nomination for Governor in Troy on Saturday, setting up a rematch with Andrew Cuomo. Hawkins finished third in the race two years ago and intends to do better this time. Hawkins says he plans to challenge the 1% tag team of Cuomo and Republican nominee Astorino on economic, climate change and criminal justice issues. Hawkins also wants NY to go carbon free with a 100%, clean renewable energy by 2030, while providing a public living wage job to any New Yorker who needs one.
The Green Party selected NYC Educator Brian Jones to highlight their opposition to Cuomo’s education policies promoting privatization of the education system, including his promotion of the Common Core agenda and charter schools. The Green Party is seeking full funding to meet the educational needs of New Yorkers, including free tuition at CUNY and SUNY. Hawkins/Jones need to receive at least 50,000 votes in the 2014 Governor election for the Green Party to retain the ballot line in NY.
The Hawkins-Jones ticket was nominated in Troy NY the day after former local State Senator and Majority Leader Joe Bruno won his federal retrial on public corruption charges despite clear evidence that he receive tens of thousands of dollars monthly for no-show jobs.
“Bruno was the wolf of Albany. The Albany media portrayed him as a lovable rogue because he was happy to publicly proclaim that his goal was to deliver favors for his friends, who stuffed his pockets in return. The Supreme Court has legalized bribery. And Cuomo whitewashed Bruno’s use of taxpayer resources to shake down donors. He raises $33 million in $40,000 chunks and then disbands the Moreland Commission without accomplishing anything. You want to end corruption in Albany, vote Green Party his November,” noted Hawkins.
Rounding out the ticket is Bronx attorney and activist Ramon Jimenez for Attorney General and Theresa Portelli, the recent Green nominee for Mayor in Albany, for State Comptroller. Jimenez ran for AG four years ago.
Hawkins said the was very encouraged when a Sienna poll showed that a workers’ candidate could pull 24% of the vote. Hawkins works as a Teamster unloading trucks for UPS in Syracuse.
“We are campaigning for a Green New Deal for New York, including full employment through public jobs for the unemployed, a $15 minimum wage, single payer health care, fully funded public schools from pre-K through college, affordable housing, and expanded mass transit. The green centerpiece of the Green New Deal to build a 100 percent clean energy by 2030, which will create 4.5 million new jobs over the next 15 years,” Hawkins said.
“Cuomo and Astorino will work to make the 1% even richer. They are promoting more austerity for public schools and services to pay for rich people’s tax cuts. We say tax the rich like New York did in the 1970s and we will be able to fully fund our schools and services, cut taxes for working and middle class people, restore revenue sharing with local governments to pay for state mandates, and build out the clean energy system,” Hawkins said.
Portelli added, “Follow the money and you will clearly see where it flows: Wall Street, Big business, conglomerates, private prisons and the prison-industrial complex, wars that support an unsustainable oil-based society…but not to local economies, school districts, higher education opportunities, public transportation, small businesses, community projects, peace, justice or green sustainable initiatives.”
“We reject Common Core linked to high-stakes testing because it is a set up. It is designed to fail schools in order private them as charters. It is designed to fail teachers of low-income students in order to bust their unions. New York State has the most segregated schools in the nation. We know that when poor students are segregated into under-resourced schools, they are going to rank low on standardized tests. Instead calling for equitable funding and desegregated schools, the Cuomo and Astorino push for charters is a push for dual school system, separate and unequal, just what Brown v. Board of Education ruled unconstitutional 60 years ago this week,” Hawkins
“New York State is at a crossroads on energy. We can frack New York. Or we can build a clean energy system. We can’t do both. Fracking would lock us into a dirty fossil fuel energy future for decades. Building a clean energysystem of distributed solar and wind power, hydrogen energy storage, and electrified transportation, all linked together by an interactive smart grid, would create the 21st century infrastructure for a sustainable prosperity,” Hawkins said.
“We oppose all of the other new fossil fuel infrastructure proposed that go along with hydrofracking for natural gas, including storing natural gas and liquid petroleum gas in the Seneca Lake salt caverns, the Algonquin gas pipeline through the lower Hudson Valley, a Liquefied Natural Gas port off Long Island, accident prone rail shipping of Bakken fracked oil and Alberta tar sands across state, and new heaters at the Port of Albany in order to speed the transfer Bakken and Alberta crude at the Port of Albany to oil barges down the Hudson River. Cuomo and Astorino want to turn New York into a petrostate. We want to build a clean energy state,” Hawkins said.
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