The Mysterious Case of David Cobb

You probably don’t all remember Mr. David Cobb; he’s the one who ran for president with the Green Party in 2004. I am not sure he actually ran, as he advocated early on for the Greens to endorse a “safe-state” strategy. Anyway, nominating Cobb for prez has backfired on the Greens. They have lost ballot access and credibility across the country, and rumor has it that they are in dire financial straits while a member of their Steering Committee is under scrutiny and may even be impeached.

In short, the Green Party is a big ol’ mess.

Well, David Cobb has resurrected himself in California where he’s been upsetting the locals. In a recent editorial for the Humboldt Sentinel, Cobb was taken to task for his questionable motives:

“David Cobb has taken his penchant for grandstanding and misrepresentation to new heights with his recent dubious claims that he is an attorney and a national political figure.

“At a minimum, these are misrepresentations that stretch the truth. David Cobb has been suspended from practicing law in Texas since 2003, which also happens to be well prior to his resignation as legal counsel for the Green Party of the United States. Cobb also resigned his post as a member of the National Committee of the GPUS last year, and holds no other offices on a state or federal level within the Green Party any related organization that can be found on the Internet.”

The editorial insists that Cobb has been lying about who he really is: He says he’s a lawyer — he’s not. He says he is a national political figure — he’s not. The Humboldt Sentinel won’t speculate as to the motives behind David Cobb’s entrance into the community’s political scene, but they do wonder what the heck he’s all about. They also say Cobb hasn’t yet paid his dues.

Regardless of Cobb’s true motives, he’s been quite good at one thing of late: raising money. During the Ohio effort to recount votes, Cobb and his staff made out like bandits. As the editorial states,

“This supposed fountainhead of practical, real-world solutions, have come up with vary little outside of creative ways of paying staff members, a task also performed with notable verve in Cobb’s fundraising on behalf of a recount of votes in Ohio, quite a bit of which went to pay the salaries of intimate associates.”

Cobb is also holding his cards close and won’t divulge any donation list to local Humboldt Greens. What’s David Cobb afraid they’ll find out — that the Green Party’s Ohio recount was funded primarily by big Democratic contributors? Regardless of ones’ take on the whole vote fraud in Ohio, you have to wonder why Cobb didn’t put as much effort into running for president of United States as he did recounting votes. He didn’t raise a quarter of the funds running for the high post as he did after the election in Ohio.

Besides, if Cobb is so darn passionate about democracy, why did he insist before the elections that the Greens should run a “safe-state” strategy where they’d virtually ignore voters in swing states? Isn’t it more democratic to run an all out campaign and let voters decide for themselves whom to vote for?

I think it’s pretty clear that the Green Party and others should steer clear of David Cobb and crew. Their motives are inscrutible and they have a record of ineptitude.

JOSHUA FRANK edits the radical news blog and is the author of Left Out! How Liberals Helped Reelect George W. Bush, published by Common Courage Press (2005). Josh can be reached at




JOSHUA FRANK is the managing editor of CounterPunch. He is the author of the new book, Atomic Days: The Untold Story of the Most Toxic Place in America, published by Haymarket Books. He can be reached at You can troll him on Twitter @joshua__frank.