Progressive Politics for a New CenturyGrassroots Democracy
September 3, 2004
The Green Party of Mississippi announces that 3 candidates will appear on its ballot line in the November election, in addition to its Presidential and Vice-Presidential candidates. In 2003, the Green Party nominated Sherman Lee Dillon for Governor. Mr. Dillon's candidacy introduced issues that otherwise would not have been discussed. Our 2004 candidates for Election Commissioner likewise will draw attention to voting issues.
Green candidates for Election Commissioner, if elected, will conduct the business of the office in a nonpartisan manner. They will push for Election Commission meetings that are open to the public and that actively seek community input. They have pledged to seek ways to increase voter registration and turnout in their districts. They also intend to speak out regarding the new voting machines that Mississippi will begin to implement in 2005, as part of the Help America Vote Act (HAVA). Current specifications call for the machines to produce a voter-verifiable paper trail. That's good, but the people of Mississippi must insist that this requirement not be compromised because of cost or any other reason. Furthermore, the new machines should be able to tabulate the results of instant runoff voting (IRV). Mississippi should become the first state in the nation to adopt IRV for all elections. Our governor and legislature are working to eliminate 65,000 of our poorest citizens from Medicaid to save money; IRV could save the state millions of dollars by eliminating costly run-off elections.
"In the process of collecting signatures on my petition to run for Election Commissioner, an amazing number of people told me they were not registered to vote. If you don't vote, you're letting someone else make decisions for you ¾ decisions like your taxes, the quality of your children's schools, the upkeep of your roads, and the cost of a driver's license," noted John Wages of Tupelo. "The right to vote is one of the most important rights of citizenship," said Victor Fleitas, candidate for Election Commissioner, 4th District, Lee County, "Register and vote!
The Green Party looks forward to presenting additional highly qualified progressive candidates at all levels in future Mississippi elections.
Green Party Candidates in November 2, 2004 General Election
Victor I. Fleitas for Election Commissioner, District 4, Lee County
Mr. Fleitas has been practicing law in Tupelo for 8 years. He served in the United States Air Force Reserve from 1986 to 1992 and graduated from the University of Mississippi School of Law with honors. He currently serves on the State Executive Committee of the Green Party of Mississippi.
Jan Hillegas for Election Commissioner, District 5, Hinds County
Jan Hillegas is a longtime human rights and peace activist in Hinds County. She served on the Hinds County Democratic Executive Committee for 8 years, specializing in trying to improve the election process for voters. In 2002, she was a founding member of the Green Party of Mississippi.
John M. Wages, Jr. for Election Commissioner, District 3, Lee County
Mr. Wages is a native Mississippian who graduated from Tupelo High School in 1978 and earned degrees from Mississippi State and Johns Hopkins Universities. He worked in medical research for 20 years and founded two biomedical research companies. He returned home to Lee County in 2001 and is now a consultant, teacher, farmer, and writer. He is Chair of the Green Party of Mississippi.
David Cobb & Pat LaMarche for President & Vice President of the United States
David Cobb, from Eureka, California, and Pat LaMarche of Maine, have been active in Green Party politics for many years. Their campaign will speak for our values: American values like peace and democracy, and Mississippi values like local control and social justice.