Green Party of California

Application for Member, Delegation to Green Party of the United States
(job description)
received January 19th, 2008

Name  -  Cat Woods
City -
County - Marin
Contact information - (415) 897-6989;

Candidate Statement

When I ran for GPUS National Committee delegate 2 years ago, I pledged to work to improve democratic standards within the GPUS and to get the GPUS to formally discard its disastrous Safe States Strategy of 2004 (which has cost the California Green Party 17% of our membership since our peak in 2003) and to affirm its right and duty to threaten and make demands of the corporate-funded parties. I stated, "These 2 issues are currently connected, with California's membership remaining disenfranchized as part of an overall trend of capitulation to the ploys of the Democrats. If this trend wins out, I believe the democratic issues will be moot, because the party will die as utterly irrelevant."

I have kept my promises in working for those goals. For two solid years, I spent an unbelievable number of hours working for more proportional representation of the membership, as mandated by a 70% vote of the National Committee. I'm proud to say that we won some victories, although I think we ultimately lost the war. The GPUS in the end rejected its own mandate. (See for gory details). But no one can say we didn't give our all to every last chance. I still hope the victories will become seeds for better democratic standards in the future.

I also co-authored a national proposal (#218) to formally discard the Safe States Strategy and to acknowledge that one of our main purposes as a political party is to pose an electoral challenge to the corporate agenda promoted by the two corporate parties, the Democrats and Republicans. This proposal passed with 80% approval in 2006. While this did not eliminate the trend toward political cowardice in the party, it at least drove that trend underground and allowed the national party to frame the terms of the 2008 presidential race without the interminable, ineffectual waffling of 2003 and 2004. Our work in the Presidential Campaign Support Committee would have been severely hampered without the passage of that proposal (see for text).

I have kept my commitments to the principles and constituency I represent. I have often put more into it than I had to give. I can't count the number of all-nighters I've invested into this struggle.

I run for re-election now with a slightly different pledge. If elected, I promise to continue to represent the causes of fair representation, accountability, and a strong electoral strategy independent of the corporate parties. I promise to do so until I no longer choose to tolerate all the contradictions, betrayals, hypocrisy and character assassination involved in doing so. I promise to take care of myself in the process. And if I assess that the time has come where further investment of time and energy amounts to "throwing good money after bad," I pledge to resign and allow you to elect a new representative of our constituency.

Meanwhile, for 2008, I pledge to keep my eyes on the prize of a strong presidential campaign against the war. The country needs this desperately. The presidential race establishes the spectrum of political debate for the whole country and yet the view of 70% of citizens is essentially excluded from public consideration. The one worthwhile thing we could accomplish this year as a political party is to unite behind the strongest possible anti-war campaign. If nothing else, we have a duty now to be AS VISIBLE AS WE CAN in challenging the pro-war, anti-liberty corporate agenda.