Saturday, July 25, 2009

Greens and the NDP co-operating? NDP desperate

It would seem that there is a movement afoot calling for cooperation between the Greens and the NDP, so as to present those "who stand for the environment and for social and economic justice." Here it is:

Dear Jack Layton,

Our country is stalled in regressive leadership.

Canada stands as a bastion of neo-conservatism under Stephen Harper. We need to bring more progressive voices into Parliament at the expense of the Conservatives. Given the direction the Liberals have taken and Ignatieff's capitulation to Harper, we can hardly expect many of those forward looking voices to be Liberal.

This coming election we can help make history. We have an opportunity to rise above the fray of partisan politics and deliver for voters throughout the country who stand for the environment and for social and economic justice. Our party can contribute to making gains for all of these by cooperating with the Green Party to reduce Harper's caucus and send the message that his regressive domestic and international politics do not represent the country's majority.

We, the undersigned, ask that our party leadership and administration seriously consider the options available to us to form an agreement with the Green Party that increases our number of seats in Parliament. We request that our leadership enter into negotiations with Elizabeth May, as soon as possible, in order to realize the many gains a mutually beneficial agreement will deliver.

We stand strong in our resolve that what we are proposing is of benefit to everyone involved as there currently are ridings where our own excellent candidates would prevail against Conservatives if they received support from Green party supporters.

We urge our party's leadership to consider the many positive attributes of negotiating winning strategies for targeted ridings, including support for either a Green candidate or an NDP candidate alone to run with the support of the other party.

By working together with others who hold similar socially and environmentally responsible values, we have an opportunity to build the movement that reflects the will of Canada's majority. A movement that can defeat Stephen Harper and his regressive agenda.

It is our time to shine!


Anne Bomford, former CVRD Regional Director
Jim Bomford
Chris Bowers, Editor, The Flying Shingle Newspaper
Peter Dimitrov, former BCNDP Leadership Candidate
Brian Fisher
John Hill
Richard Hughes, former CVRD Director,NDP Candidate
Sharon Jackson, Duncan City Councilor
Kevin Logan, former MA in BCNDP Government
Phil Marchant Hugh Mcleod
Jenny Mcleod
Rowland Morgan, Former NDP Caucus EA
Maureen Shaylor
Lorraine St. James
Michael Wallace, UBC Professor Emeritus
Jerry West, Editor, The Record, Newspaper
Muriel Wiens

According to this petition they seek to represent those who care about social justice issues and economic issues and the environment? Do these Dippers know that on social justice issues and especially economic issues, the Greens are much more closely aligned with the Conservatives than the NDP?

The NDP must be desperate.
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  1. A Broad Coalition was begun several years ago. Nothing much budged. Finger pointing fron NDP and Greens at each other.
    fter last Fed election, even strategic voting failed.
    Coalition seemed promising.
    NDP and Greens not cooperating gave BC Lib win in recent election.
    Orange and Green need to join.

  2. There would be a couple of advantages in some kind of agreement but after the fuss Jack made last election over 2 stinking ridings there is no way in hell he will ever back down on this issue.

    I would think a combined campaign with 30-40 deals based on evniromental stewardship, guaranteed minimum income, getting the hell out of afganistan, legalizing pot and PR could be doable if both sides flexed a bit but I don't see it happening.
    more likely it would be two seperate campaigns with two separate messages and
    would the NDP take one riding for one riding or because of the greater % of vote would they demand a 2 or 3 for one deal?

    Would they back down in at least one riding they are strong enough to ensure a swing to the Greens?

    the arguements would get ugly and I'm sure it would sour the process before we achieved anything. That said the most recent local NDP candidate was a decent guy who I think is pragmatic enough to give a deal with the greens a try, but saddly neither of us can break 10% nor fund a full campaign so its a moot point.

    Even a move to stop snipping at each other would be an improvement, the real enemy is who we need to attack.

  3. My advice to Jack Layton and the NDP: don't take the bait. There are a few reasons why:

    1. NDP and Green supporters are not the same. If the Green party decided not to run candidates in some ridings, the NDP would at most get 40% of the Green support. The Liberals would get another 40% and the Conservatives would get 20%. I would estimate that the Conservatives would lose four seats to the Liberals. There would be no difference in the NDP or Green seats.

    2. One thing the NDP does not need to do is legitimize the Greens. Once the Greens start receiving attention, the NDP starts losing the same. Yes, Jack Layton had to accept Elizabeth May into the debates because Stephen Harper agreed to accept May. Layton wanted to debate Harper and had to accept May's participation. Otherwise Layton's participation would have been in doubt.

    3. Layton should not become a puppet of May. St├ęphane Dion was perceived as a puppet of May for agreeing to many of the May's demands such as environmental policy promotion and agreeing not to run Liberal candidates in selected ridings.

    4. When a blogger from Liblogs presents the petition as shown above, the NDP should take two steps back.

  4. #1 I agree, Greens, and NDP for that matter are not homogenious and neither party could control where the vote went and some would simply opt out rather than follow the deal. In my riding the Greens I know personally, (so not a huge sample) are probably more ex pcs and libs than NDP. The NDP always fights to get the 10%+- and we've get about 8.5, obviously most of my greens were never dippers.

    #2 skinny, its funny Jack made all that fuss about it being undemocratic to made deals and yet dippers often don't think a 4th voice deserves legitimacy. Rather self serving democratic ideals NO?

    #3, selected ridings? make that 2, a deal between friends and peers not two parties making a raft of deals. You guys were for a coalition gov yet still chide against making deals that could form a coaltion of greater "percieved" legitimacy than last spring's. Or is it just because it's the Greens?

  5. The NDP stand on the edge of becoming fantastic or becoming fantasy.

    Reminding the Canadian public that the Greens are (a) not necessarily progressive in Canada (unlike their European counterparts) and (b) more attractive to older, small-c conservative voters must become a number one priority for the NDP.

    Other priorities would be to increase their appeal to the average person, mainly since Harper AND Ignatieff have given up on them. As a result, less emphasis should be on union associations and more on broad appeal.

    I used to hope that there would be a merger between the Greens and NDP, if not just because of a wish to see the two sets of numbers become a majority.

    That, however, is fantasy. So ... will the NDP figure out that they can be fantastic on their own?

  6. Hi LoW,

    I am imagining what Jack Layton would say about coaltions before an election:

    "The Conservatives will be running 308 candidates; the Liberals will be running 308. We in the NDP are going to do our best to make sure that we have 308 candidates running so that we have a presence throughout the country. Our goal is to defeat the Harper Conservatives and to get Canadians to elect as many NDP candidates as possible."

    One unique problem the NDP will have in this election is that the media will frame this election as the clash of the two titans: Harper and Ignatieff. If Layton and the NDP make a deal with May and the Greens, the media will view this informal coalition as two "secondary" parties uniting. Layton won't be able to get the media away from the two-titans frame.

  7. This sort of co-operation reminds one of the Elizabeth May-Stephane Dion agreement of last election. Seems that the NDP hopes the Greens haven't learned their lesson.

  8. Greens are the enemy of the Liberal Party. They have always been the enemy. Newspeak, doublethink.

  9. No one here has mentioned how undemocratic it would be for New Democrats to ask one or more of their ridings to not compete in an election...Especially when a Green Party candidate would offer nothing similar in the way of policy or focus. It would kill membership and morale in that riding.

    A much more sensible goal would be to not only field 308 candidates, but to compete at the highest level (quality of candidates/party support/fundraising) in 308 ridings.

    It is key to point out that this seems to be an initiative formed soley among members of the BC NDP, and I would be awfully surprised to see any riding association east of BC agree to those terms.

    We shall see how the authors of the initiative fare at the Halifax convention in August. My guess is...Not so well.

    Daniel Beals
    Kingston & the Islands New Democrats


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