Minor Party Ballot Access Legislation Featured in Baltimore City Paper

From the Baltimore City Paper: Baltimore City state Senator Bill Ferguson (D-46th District) is worried about the state of democracy in Baltimore, across Maryland, and countrywide. "Voting is the fundamental building block of any democracy," he says, "and the numbers of those voting is a smaller percentage than it should or could be, particularly if you look at age cohorts of young and middle-aged voters." This creates a "looming" problem for democracy, he concludes, so lawmakers need to find "new ways to reach citizens no matter their political persuasion," so that society has "an informed populace that engages in the process" of electing its leaders. The dismal state of voting affairs in Baltimore City were made manifest, to much public hand-wringing, in the 2011 mayoral election. In the Democratic primary - the tally that, by default, determines the winner in this nearly one-party burg - victor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake got 39,829 votes, 8% of Baltimore's voting-age population. Less than 10% of some districts' electorates backed the winners in the City Council races. Given this, perhaps Ferguson's crisis isn't so much looming as here already, at least in Baltimore. So Ferguson has introduced two bills in the current Maryland General Assembly session that aim to ease the way for those who aren't Republicans or Democrats to engage in political life. One would make it easier for third parties, like the Green Party or the Libertarian Party, to retain status as officially recognized parties in the Free State...Click here for the full article.

Green Party Joins the Marijuana Policy Coalition of Maryland

The Maryland Green Party has joined the Marijuana Policy Coalition of Maryland. This coalition of non-partisan and partisan groups supports the end of marijuana prohibition and the legalization of marijuana for sale in Maryland. The coalition supports the passage of the Marijuana Control Act of 2014, which would allow adults to use, possess, and grow limited amounts of marijuana. The Maryland Green Party has publicly supported legalizing marijuana and ending the disastrous national "war on drugs" since the party's establishment in 2000. 

How About This Weather?

Let’s talk about the weather. Or not. Let’s talk about the climate instead.It has been cold and snowy for most of the US, but the global temperature continues to rise. Democrats and Republicans want to expand fossil fuel dependence with the Keystone Pipeline and hydraulic fracking. This winter has been long, and we’ll weather the storm. But our climate won’t last with these policies.Let’s talk about the weather. Or not. Let’s talk about the homeless population being devastated by it, and the families still being driven to the streets by the foreclosure crisis.Let’s talk about the weather. Or not. Let’s talk about the rain of bombs our president keeps ordering on innocent civilians.Let’s talk about the weather. Or not. Let’s talk about the climate of corruption instead.Corporate money has pervaded every level of government. The Supreme Court has guaranteed it through their ruling in Citizens United, and Congress spends more time fundraising than governing. Only the Green Party refuses all corporate and PAC money. When we lead, we lead by example.The 2014 elections are eight months away. Don’t get cold feet. Donate now to fund our efforts to get more candidates on the ballot and in office. Let’s give everyone something to talk about other than the weather.Donate to the Green Party of the United States here. Donate to the Maryland Green Party here. 

Green Party Calls For Halt To Drone Strikes, Obama's Unconstitutional War Powers

From the Green Party of the United States: The Green Party called for an immediate halt to all drone warfare and for the Obama Administration to comply with the Constitution's assignment of war powers to Congress."The White House has usurped the legislative branch's control over war, by having the CIA wage targeted drone warfare against Pakistan, Yemen, and Somalia outside of Congress's oversight," said Howie Hawkins, Green candidate for Governor of New York. Mr. Hawkins is from Syracuse, where drones on combat missions are controlled out of Hancock Air National Guard Base."The Obama Administration says it's reducing the use of drones. We demand a complete end to drone strikes, which are killing civilians and, by inciting hostility against the U.S., placing Americans at potential risk of reprisal," said Mr. Hawkins. Greens said that President Obama has kept Congress and the public in the dark on drone warfare...(read the complete statement here)

Tim Willard Announces Campaign for Montgomery County Council At-Large

Tim Willard, of Kensington, has announced his intention to seek the Green Party's nomination for Montgomery County Council, At-Large. Tim is a retired archivist and the current co-chair of the Maryland Green Party. Tim's website can be found here.  Tim has lived in Montgomery County for thirty years. Tim and his wife have three children. He worked for 26 years at the National Archives.  The Maryland Green Party will hold a state-wide party-organized primary election to determine its nominees for 2014 campaigns.