Click amount to donate direct to CounterPunch
  • $25
  • $50
  • $100
  • $500
  • $other
  • use PayPal
Keep CounterPunch ad free. Support our annual fund drive today!

Party Fights for Its Future



On Sunday, August 22nd, state delegates of the Pennsylvania Green Party formally rejected the strategy that their presidential candidate David Cobb should run a “safe states” campaign.

“Pennsylvanians have collected and filed the most signatures to get the Cobb/LaMarche ticket on the ballot,” reads the resolution which passed by a decisive 24 to 7 vote.

“Pennsylvania is one of the top three states in elected Green Party officeholders … as Greens, we want to exert maximum possible pressure on the Democratic and Republican Parties, forcing them to address our issues; The Green Party of Pennsylvania asks that Cobb/LaMarche run harder in Pennsylvania than in the so-called ‘safe states,’ maximizing the strategic value of campaigning in this important state.

The Green Party of Pennsylvania encourages the National Green Party candidates to run vigorously in Pennsylvania and in all states, regardless of projected electoral outcomes; and The Green Party of Pennsylvania rejects any ‘safe states strategy,’ and calls upon the national candidates and all state Green Parties to do the same, and we call upon all voters to reject any candidate that does not oppose the Iraq War.”

This was the second swing state in which the Green Party has urged David Cobb to campaign harder. In mid-August the Pacific Green Party of Oregon started the trend by passing their own resolution which has virtually the same wording as the Pennsylvania version.

“As to the latest decisions, it is interesting to note, for example, that Pacific Green Party resolution carried with a whopping 10 votes,” contends David Cobb’s media coordinator Blair Bobier. “The combined ‘no’ votes and abstentions were greater than the positive votes [in Oregon].”

However, it is interesting that Cobb and company are complaining about the legitimacy of the resolutions despite the fact that their own campaign got elected by an even smaller amount of votes in many states.

When asked if this turn of events within the Green Party helps Ralph Nader’s independent bid, Nader’s spokesman Kevin Zeese said, “Unfortunately not, they will still be running Cobb — and the sad reality is that wherever Cobb runs he runs safe because he is an unknown with no resources [and he] is not trying to get a lot of votes.”

“The first states I campaigned in after winning the Green Party’s presidential nomination were Pennsylvania and Ohio, two hotly contested swing states,” responds David Cobb. “I’ll be returning to Pennsylvania next week and Ohio next month. I’ve been to Florida and will be back there as well. Next month I go to Wisconsin, Michigan and Maine, all swing states. I honestly don’t know how anyone who is paying even the slightest bit of attention can claim that I am not campaigning in these states.”

Cobb however, forgot to mention that both Pennsylvania and Ohio were still in signature gathering stages when he “campaigned” right after his endorsement in late July. Nonetheless, we will see how hard Cobb campaigns in other swing states like Michigan and Wisconsin, where he is currently polling at well under 1%. Also it seems important to ask what it is Cobb is saying about a vote for John Kerry in those states. Is he still hoping Greens will “weigh their options,” as he has said before? If so, it still isn’t clear who it is Cobb is campaigning for in swing states, himself or the Democrats.

Indeed the Green Party is at a crossroads. There are internal issues at play that could alter the course of the party’s delicate future. Cobb is at one end of the spectrum with Nader-Greens holding down the other. If the Green Party is to regain its once formidable power, let us hope the latter prevails.

JOSHUA FRANK, a contributor to CounterPunch’s forthcoming book, A Dime’s Worth of Difference: Beyond the Lesser of Two Evils, is putting the finishing touches on Left Out: How Liberals did Bush’s Work for Him, to be published by Common Courage Press. He welcomes comments at


JOSHUA FRANK is managing editor of CounterPunch. His most recent book is Hopeless: Barack Obama and the Politics of Illusion, co-edited with Jeffrey St. Clair and published by AK Press. He can be reached at You can follow him on Twitter @joshua__frank

More articles by:

2016 Fund Drive
Smart. Fierce. Uncompromised. Support CounterPunch Now!

  • cp-store
  • donate paypal

CounterPunch Magazine


Weekend Edition
October 21, 2016
Friday - Sunday
John Wight
Hillary Clinton and the Brutal Murder of Gaddafi
Diana Johnstone
Hillary Clinton’s Strategic Ambition in a Nutshell
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: Trump’s Naked and Hillary’s Dead
John W. Whitehead
American Psycho: Sex, Lies and Politics Add Up to a Terrifying Election Season
Stephen Cooper
Hell on Earth in Alabama: Inside Holman Prison
Patrick Cockburn
13 Years of War: Mosul’s Frightening and Uncertain Future
Rob Urie
Name the Dangerous Candidate
Pepe Escobar
The Aleppo / Mosul Riddle
David Rosen
The War on Drugs is a Racket
Sami Siegelbaum
Once More, the Value of the Humanities
Cathy Breen
“Today Is One of the Heaviest Days of My Life”
Neve Gordon
Israel’s Boycott Hypocrisy
Mark Hand
Of Pipelines and Protest Pens: When the Press Loses Its Shield
Victor Wallis
On the Stealing of U.S. Elections
Michael Hudson
The Return of the Repressed Critique of Rentiers: Veblen in the 21st century Rentier Capitalism
Brian Cloughley
Drumbeats of Anti-Russia Confrontation From Washington to London
Howard Lisnoff
Still Licking Our Wounds and Hoping for Change
Brian Gruber
Iraq: There Is No State
Peter Lee
Trump: We Wish the Problem Was Fascism
Stanley L. Cohen
Equality and Justice for All, It Seems, But Palestinians
Steve Early
In Bay Area Refinery Town: Berniecrats & Clintonites Clash Over Rent Control
Kristine Mattis
All Solutions are Inadequate: Why It Doesn’t Matter If Politicians Mention Climate Change
Peter Linebaugh
Ron Suny and the Marxist Commune: a Note
Andre Vltchek
Sudan, Africa and the Mosaic of Horrors
Keith Binkly
The Russians Have Been Hacking Us For Years, Why Is It a Crisis Now?
Jonathan Cook
Adam Curtis: Another Manager of Perceptions
Ted Dace
The Fall
Sheldon Richman
Come and See the Anarchy Inherent in the System
Susana Hurlich
Hurricane Matthew: an Overview of the Damages in Cuba
Dave Lindorff
Screwing With and Screwing the Elderly and Disabled
Chandra Muzaffar
Cuba: Rejecting Sanctions, Sending a Message
Dennis Kucinich
War or Peace?
Joseph Natoli
Seething Anger in the Post-2016 Election Season
Jack Rasmus
Behind The 3rd US Presidential Debate—What’s Coming in 2017
Ron Jacobs
A Theory of Despair?
Gilbert Mercier
Globalist Clinton: Clear and Present Danger to World Peace
James A Haught
Many Struggles Won Religious Freedom
Kollibri terre Sonnenblume
Dear Fellow Gen Xers: Let’s Step Aside for the Millennials
Uri Avnery
The Peres Funeral Ruckus
Tom Clifford
Duterte’s Gambit: the Philippines’s Pivot to China
Reyes Mata III
Scaling Camelot’s Walls: an Essay Regarding Donald Trump
Raouf Halaby
Away from the Fray: From Election Frenzy to an Interlude in Paradise
James McEnteer
Art of the Feel
David Yearsley
Trump and Hitchcock in the Age of Conspiracies
Charles R. Larson
Review: Sjón’s “Moonstone: the Boy Who Never Was”