Mike Gravel endorses Jesse Johnson (Green Party) for President

Jesse Johnson & Mike Gravel
Former Senator and Democratic Presidential Candidate Mike Gravel has joined the Jesse Johnson campaign for President. Jesse Johnson, who has run for Senate and Governor in West Virginia on the Mountain Party ticket, helped deliver the West Virginia Mountain Party’s ballot line for the Green Party last month. The release:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

11 March 2008

Contact:
Joel Brown joelbrown88@ yahoo.com 703 864 5199
Steve Kramer scooter@the- exchange- us.com 240 426 3338
Committee to elect Jesse Johnson

Chris Petherick chris@gravel2008.us 703 980 8055
Jon Kraus jon@gravel2008.us 203 209 7736
Gravel for President
National Statesman and International Hero Senator Mike Gravel Supports Jesse Johnson’s Bid for President

In what has to be the most unprecedented cross party statement of support Democratic Party Candidate for President Mike Gravel announced that he has decided to support the campaign of Green Party Candidate Jesse Johnson running for the nomination on the Green Party Ticket.

After a meeting between the two in Washington DC Friday, Gravel stated, “My political party long ago walked away from taking the necessary steps that will safe guard our nation’s and our children’s futures. I worked dedicatedly throughout my career as a U.S. Senator to protect the precious resources our country had within it’s boundaries as well as to mitigate the negative impact our businesses and individuals were having on the planet. I have watched the ever important job of stewarding these gifts vanish from the political landscape and I hold the Democratic Party leadership responsible for giving up that fight.”

Why did Gravel choose Johnson from among the other candidates vying for the nomination in all the campaigns of all available political parties? Gravel explains, “I’m supporting Jesse because he began his political career with the determination that the environmental plundering must stop. He placed every other interest on hold to run for office, in his home state and now nationally, to challenge the corporations that destroy our national resources and then harvest from this practice a toxic energy source; coal. The mountain top mining practices devastate the landscape by blowing apart mountains and then carbon belching plants burn the coal creating a form of energy that serves as one of the major contributors for global climate change.”

Gravel continues, “We must have a voice in the political realm speaking earnestly and intelligently about all of our environmental needs. Johnson and the Green Party have that environmental credibility that we Democrats have lost.”

Senator Gravel intends to travel and campaign with Jesse Johnson as their schedule allows.

Jesse Johnson, former chair of the West Virginia Mountain Party and two time candidate for statewide office, said that this sort of cross party support “was just the kind of non-traditional, selfless act that we have come to know Senator Mike Gravel to make. When he read the Pentagon Papers into the Congressional record, or filibustered to end the draft he had his eye – at all times – on the big picture and the needs of others. I am not surprised that a true patriot and advocate of the citizen as leader of our country would take such an unprecedented and bold stand. And I am honored and humbled that he has selected my campaign and the Green Party as his allies in this very important race to save our environment from the actions of humans.”

Gravel closed by saying, “We’ve seen the havoc the two parties can wreak, on a global scale, by locking out the voices of reason – by eliminating the third party voices. I want to amplify those voices to save our country from our own shortsighted and greedy actions. If we want to end the war in Iraq, provide health care to all citizens, educate our young people, we’re going to have to start not only working together with these alternate parties: but literally working to support them. That’s why I’m supporting Jesse Johnson’s campaign for President.”

This is an additional sign of Third Parties becoming more palatable and acceptable to Democrats and Republicans and less of a pariah.

20 Responses to “Mike Gravel endorses Jesse Johnson (Green Party) for President”

  1. Ben Miller Says:

    The Greens is a better match for Gravel. Much better for him to endorse one of their candidates than trying to run as Libertarian himself, like he had hinted at doing before.

  2. Trent Hill Says:

    Ben,

    I agree. Gravel matches up with the Greens pretty well—and im glad he did this. Hopefully his 100,000 sum-odd supporters will flock to the Greens.

  3. BillTx Says:

    Wish he’d endorsed McKinney. RACIST

    lol, jk.

  4. Skyler Says:

    Mike has not dropped out of the race. He is still conducting his own campaign as a Democrat, however, he is endorsing Jesse Johnson in the Green party.

    J. Skyler McKinley
    National Multimedia Coordinator
    Mike Gravel for President 2008
    smckinley@gravel2008.us

  5. Steve Says:

    So much for Gravel as Libertarian. While there’s too much “liberal” in his “liberaltarian” views for most of our tastes, I think it would have been a nice boost if he endorsed our ticket. I know lots of Ron Paul people held him in high regard and a Libertarian endorsement might have convinced some young left-libertarian voters who took a sip of freedom from Paul to swallow the whole glass.

  6. David Gaines Says:

    I’m happy for Jesse, whom I’ve met and respect, but this is rather weird, even for Mike Gravel. Is there a precedent for someone endorsing another party’s candidate while refusing to halt his own campaign? If he supports Jesse Johnson, or anyone else besides himself, why doesn’t he simply shift his time and energies to acting on behalf of that person? Mike Gravel has de facto disappeared from the Democratic Party radar screen whether he says he’s still in the race or not. What is the Democratic Party doing for him and vice versa? Why doesn’t he just make the switch? He’ll be forced to anyway after the convention. Why wait until then?

    Also, it baffles me how many Libertarians have been pleading for Mike Gravel to endorse their party this year. I campaigned for Roger MacBride and Ed Clark and hung out with the Society of Individual Liberty folks for years before I, shall we say, moved on. Being against the Iraq war and illegal wiretapping doesn’t make you a Libertarian. There are REPUBLICANS who are against the Iraq war and illegal wiretapping. The CONSTITUTION PARTY is against the Iraq war and illegal wiretapping. What exactly is there about the anti-green, anti-labor, anti-consumer, anti-civil rights, pro-discrimination, anti-U.N., pro-corporate, pro-free market capitalism Libertarian Party platform that would appeal to Mike Gravel, or anybody like him? Seriously. I’d like to know how people come to the conclusion that Mike Gravel would support the LP platform.

  7. will Says:

    this might be enough to give jesse the Vp spot, jesse could focus on the environmental issues while others campaign in other niches of the left. gravel mike be a good vp candidate for cynthia as well. it sure would bring in some much needed press.

  8. Skyler Says:

    If the Senator can win one delegate, he is permitted to make a speech on the floor of the convention.

    Imagine what that would be like.

  9. David Gaines Says:

    will: I agree on all counts. I think Jesse would make a great VP choice, and Gravel would be a pretty gutsy pick as well. But I’m afraid he needs to leave the Democratic Party first. ;-)

  10. Fred C. Says:

    David: Where are you seeing libertarians plead for him to jump in the LP race? All the comments I’ve seen ranged from detached speculation to stronger disbelief than yours. Gravel himself is the one that’s mentioned taking his campaign to the LP, while I haven’t seen much prompting for it on the other side.

  11. Ronald Kane Hardy Says:

    Gravel to me comes across as more of a Populist than a Green but then again the Greens can have a “good sized teepee” if not a “large tent”. Gravel would not fit as a VP if McKinney is the GP Candidate solely because you would then have two ex-Democrats leading the Green Ticket. I love Jesse Johnson, I think he’s great, but again he has been a Green as long as the Mountain Party has been affiliated with the Green Party, i.e. 8 months. If McKinney (if she gets the nomination) wants to anchor her ticket with a ‘deep rooted Green’ it wouldn’t be Johnson. On the other hand, bringing the Mountain Party into the Green Party fold is worthy of gratitude at least, and a VP position wouldn’t be out of the question. (Remember when the Natural Law Party ‘merged’ with the Reform Party, and then Pat Robertson ‘stole’ the nomination from Hagelin).

    As a Green Party member and Green Party ‘bureaucractivist’ (copyright pending ronald kane hardy) I am very impressed with the candidates seeking the GP nomination – all of them. I would take any one of them as the standard bearer this year.

  12. Trent Hill Says:

    “Pat Robertson ‘stole’ the nomination from Hagelin”

    Pat Buchanan***

  13. Steve Says:

    Let me be clear – I’m not saying Gravel is a Libertarian or should run as a Libertarian candidate. But he did mention on at least 2 occasions that he might run as an LP candidate, he’s a Reason subscriber, and several of his positions are close to (or are) libertarian.

    So if Gravel himself found the LP appealing enough that he considered becoming its standard bearer then he certainly thought highly enough of us that he could have endorsed the ticket. While I obviously wouldn’t support Gravel if he ran for the LP nomination (click my name to see my candidate if you have facebook) I do think a tactical endorsement, like him saying “we don’t agree on everything, but lets support the LP because they’re the best opposition to the war,” would help our outreach to the left, especially among young politically rootless left-leaning Ron Paul voters who at first only agreed with Paul on the war then were exposed to libertarianism but will now be scattered among Obama, the Greens, the LP, and apathy.

    Oh well, the Greens are a better fit for Mr. Gravel. Best of luck to him. Maybe he can sway some of them to his position on the income tax.

  14. Rhonda Grate Says:

    I voted for Mike Gravel in the California Primary though I knew he was not in the running. I wanted some dissenting voice to stand up for the Constitution. Jesse Johnson sounds like a good book thumper too.

    It’s kind of funny that the Green Party advocate in a previous comment so quickly dismisses Johnson as the Presidential candidate for the Green Party. I suspect the delegates’ hats are already tipped to McKinney? But what if his campaign starts to see some real legs out of this – might he not want to take the lead? Just curious.

  15. Ronald Kane Hardy Says:

    “Pat Robertson ‘stole’ the nomination from Hagelin”

    Pat Buchanan***

    Oh yeah, THAT Pat. Silly me! His name slipped my mind, and Robertson slipped right in.

  16. gravel kucinich paul nader Says:

    Gravel Kucinich Paul Nader;
    dare speak truth,
    demand peace.

    Honesty compassion intelligence guts –
    http://prorev.com/#apart

  17. Sivarticus Says:

    Wouldn’t be surprised if the movement toward crowning shifty neo-con WAR as the LP nominee turned Gravel away for good. He’s certainly doing it to more than a few Ron Paul supporters, who would otherwise go for the Libertarians without Ron Paul himself in the race this fall.

  18. Matthew Says:

    Uuuuh, WHAT??! How does Gravel supporting a relatively unknown (to those outside the GP) do much of anything? I have much respect for both of them but I just don’t get it. McKinney will win the Green Nomination, swap some votes with Nader, the progressive vote will be split, FIN… Why can’t we have a real freaking progressive coalition (non-democrap of course), FOR THE LOVE OF GOD

  19. Robert Milnes Says:

    Matthew, that’s a good question.

  20. Not snark, not at all Says:

    Wow, Mike’s more relevant than ever!

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