Monday, August 6, 2012

Peace and Freedom Party - California Convention update

Newly elected Peace and Freedom Party officials (two-year terms):
* State Chair, Kevin Akin (Riverside)

Secretary, Dave Campbell (San Francisco)
Treasurer, Sherry Borg (Contra Costa)

Newly elected Peace and Freedom Party officials-at-large:

C.T. Weber (Sacramento)
Richard Becker (San Francisco)* Cassandra Lepe (Yolo)
Cindy Henderson (Los Angeles)
Marsha Feinland (Alameda)
Dave Kadlecek (Santa Clara)
Mary Lou Finley (San Diego)

2012-08-05 "California PFP nominates Barr and Sheehan this afternoon" report from Kevin Akin, Chairperson of the California Peace and Freedom Party:

Wow! What a session!  We went through the whole process, with nominations and seconds and speeches and so on - and at the very end of her 15 minute speech, the last one before the voting began, Peta Lindsay announced that the PSL was withdrawing her name from consideration, because her nomination would likely leave a blank on the California ballot, and the Peace and Freedom Party needs  names on the ballot.  Then she paused, while peoples jaws dropped and there were gasps all over the hall - and announced that they would be voting for Roseanne Barr and Cindy Sheehan, who would be good representatives of the party and fighters for socialism!
The rules had been changed to allow three ballots before eliminating the lowest vote-getter, rather than one ballot. Of course, a majority (of all present and able to vote) for one candidate would end the voting at that point.
First ballot:  Barr 29, Alexander 12, Durham 18, 4 abstentions.  (32 votes required for a majority, we thought.  After the vote, there was a count-off to determine exactly how many delegates were present and able to vote.  There were in fact 64, meaning that the required majority was 33.)
(The several people who had told me they intended to vote for Rocky Anderson before he withdrew, voted in the first round instead either for Roseanne Barr or Stewart Alexander.)
Second ballot:  Barr 37, Alexander 6, Durham 16,  5 abstentions.  Barr was declared nominated.
Several people who had voted for Alexander or Durham recognized that Barr was going to be nominated, and switched their votes even though no one had yet been formally dropped, ending the process before it could become too wearing.
While both Cindy Sheehan and Christina Lopez  were nominated from the floor for VP, Lopez declined (because she is Durhams's running mate nationally), and Cindy was nominated for Vice President with all in favor except 13 abstentions (mainly from FSP).  So it's official - Roseanne Barr and Cindy Sheehan are the Peace and Freedom Party ticket.

Richard Becker, of the PSL, writes:
The idea that the PSL sees the FSP as its "arch rival organization" is imaginary and has no basis in reality.
The PSL is not running against Roseanne Barr and Cindy Sheehan, nor any of the other socialist or progressive candidates for that matter. We are running against the capitalist system and its candidates. We have expended a great deal of time, energy and resources in getting on the ballot in what we hope will be 13-14 states in order to expose the capitalist/imperialist system and bring the message of socialism to hundreds of thousands or millions of people who we cannot reach in another way at this time. We are not competing with the Barr/Sheehan campaign for votes. We see our campaigns as complementary -- more voices raising the need for socialism -- not competitive.
The PSL voted for the Barr/Sheehan slate for exactly the reason that Peta Lindsay stated in her speech at the convention, part of which follows:  "We are highly aware of the threat posed to the continuing existence of Peace and Freedom Party – the only openly socialist party with ballot status – by the reactionary and deceptive Prop 14. It is especially important that the party have as energetic and visible a 2012 campaign as possible, one which can hopefully register tens of thousands of new PFP voters. If I were to win the nomination here today, but not win the court fight, that could lead to the PFP presidential ballot line being blank. We do not want to see that happen.
"So, I am announcing that we are withdrawing from consideration for the Peace and Freedom Party presidential and vice-presidential nominations – while continuing to run an active write-in campaign in California. I want to profoundly thank all the delegates who have supported my candidacy, and urge them, and all the undecided and uncommitted delegates at the convention today, to support the Roseanne Barr/ Cindy Sheehan ticket. Roseanne and Cindy’s campaign is already drawing extensive media attention and they have pledged to carry out a strong, socialist campaign and work to build PFP."

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