Green Party of Minnesota
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The Green Party of Minnesota is the fourth largest political party in Minnesota and was founded in 1994 on the Four Pillars of the Green Party: Ecological Wisdom, Social and Economic Justice, Grassroots Democracy, and Nonviolence and Peace. It is nationally affiliated with the Green Party of the United States.
In the 2000 Presidential Election, Green Party nominee Ralph Nader received 5% of the vote in Minnesota, which earned major party status for the Green Party in Minnesota. But in the election of 2004, neither Green Party presidential nominee David Cobb nor any candidate for statewide office received 5% or more, thus losing major party status in the state.
In 2003 Elaine Fleming became the first elected Green mayor in Minnesota. Fleming is mayor of Cass Lake, Minnesota, and was elected mayor for her first term by seven votes. Fleming was elected mayor for a second term as a write-in candidate. As of 2006, Fleming was serving her second and last term as Mayor.
While the party is currently defined as a minor political party, it has had recent success in some city elections, especially in Minneapolis and St. Paul. In 2005, Cam Gordon, a former chair of the Green Party of Minnesota, was elected in Ward 2 to the Minneapolis City Council, winning over DFLer Cara Letofsky in a 51% to 48% vote. Ward 2 is considered one of the most diverse areas of Minneapolis, representing the University of Minnesota Minneapolis Campus and the Cedar-Riverside and Seward neighborhoods. Despite this gain on the council, two Green incumbents on the council, Natalie Johnson Lee (Ward 6) and Dean Zimmermann (Ward 7), were unseated during the 2005 election. Redistricting had pitted both against other council incumbents.
The party is led by a 17-member coordinating committee which sets the party's long-range goals, budget, and strategy. These decisions are then implemented by an executive committee made of five party co-chairs, each of whom is responsible for one of five portfolios of party business (membership, political affairs, finances, communications, and internal organization). Each portfolio co-chair oversees a number of committees and party functions. While the coordinating and executive committees handle day-to-day operations of the state party, most organizing, activism, and decision-making is decentralized into a number of autonomous local party organizations (or "seedlings") located throughout the state.
- "Minnesota still Democrat, no longer safe bet". Pioneer Press (Saint Paul). November 8, 2000.
- DeFiebre, Conrad (November 9, 2004). "Greens, IP ponder their options after lackluster showing at polls". Star Tribune.
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