In the following, Cook County Green Party chairman Rob Sherman explains why he could not withdraw his challenge to the Illinois presidential ballot petitions of the Constitution, Justice, Socialist, and Together Enhancing America parties:
On Sunday, at about 9 p.m., I sent an e-mail to Illinois Green Party attorney Andy Finko, directing him to withdraw my ballot access Objections against the candidates of the Socialist Party, the Justice Party, the Constitution Party and the Together Enhancing America Party, then pending before the State Board of Elections.
Andy had previously asked me to be the representative name on the Objections. I thought that it was a great idea, and still do, 100%. I made a big deal of telling the local press that I thought it was a ballot access fraud for these candidates to try to sneak onto the ballot with one or two signatures or, in one case, a few hundred signatures, when thousands of signatures were required. See, for example: http://www.journal-topics.com/
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I even called into question the ethics of the Democratic and Republican Parties for not challenging the fraudulent certifications by the other Parties to the State Board of Elections that the other Parties had met the nominating signature requirements when, in fact, they hadn’t met the requirements. I further staked my hard-earned 30-year national reputation for integrity (see: http://www.robsherman.com/
information/aboutrob.htmand http://www.robsherman.com/ information/aboutadvocacy.htm) by stating that I wouldn’t condone this electoral fraud by these other Parties, even if the two corporate parties would. I also stated that my actions wouldn’t prevent anybody from voting for the candidate of their choice. The other Third Party candidates were welcome to register as write-in candidates and be on the ballot, that way. However, when your name is pre-printed on the ballot, that affirms to the voters that you had, indeed, met a threshold of widespread support by actually meeting the nominating petition signature requirement. I would not condone such a blatant fraud against the voters.
In addition, if Jill Stein gets 5% of the vote in Illinois in November, the Illinois Green Party www.ilgp.org then becomes an Established Political Party under Illinois law, thus providing that we would need far fewer signatures on nominating petitions for the next four years. For that reason, I, as Chairman of the Cook County Green Party, wanted to see the Third Party vote and the indiscriminate anybody-but-the-Democrats-or-
Republicans vote consolidated amongst two Third Party candidates rather than diffused amongst six Third Party candidates.
Before Andy asked me to be the representative objector, though, he contacted the Stein campaign for their thoughts on the subject. Ben Manski, Chairman of the Jill Stein for President campaign, told Andy, on Monday, July 2, 2012, that this was a decision for the Illinois Green Party and not one for the Stein campaign.
Then, on Thursday, July 5, 2012, Ben Manski sent me an e-mail, stating that the Stein campaign had reversed that position and now wanted me to withdraw my challenges to the ballot petitions of the other independent parties in Illinois.Later that same day, I received a phone call from Jill Stein, affirming the request that had been made in Ben.
The next day, Friday, July 6, 2012, I spoke, by telephone, with Ben Manski to inform him that I had gone public with my reasons for filing the Objections, that I had staked my national reputation on it, that withdrawing my objections would completely destroy my credibility by implying that I now do condone those ballot access frauds, that I strongly supported the Objections, and that withdrawing the objections would severely damage the chances of Jill getting the all-important 5% vote in Illinois. Ben told me that he would take my concerns to Jill and that he would get back to me with the Campaign’s position with my concerns taken into consideration.When I didn’t hear back from Ben after awhile, I left several messages, over the past two weeks, on Ben’s telephone number voice mail, asking for the Campaign’s position with my concerns taken into consideration. I also left voice mail, several times during the past two weeks, with Erica Wolf (possibly Wolfe), who had also contacted me about this matter. Neither Ben nor Erica ever responded to my phone calls, even though precious time for taking action was slipping away.Ben finally got back to me, with an e-mail, at 7p.m. on Sunday, July 22nd, in which he affirmed that the position taken in the Campaign’s e-mail of July 5, 2012, remained their position, even after taking my concerns into consideration.
My Objections were filed individually and not as an action of the Cook Green Party, the Illinois Green Party, the Green Party of the United States nor of the Stein campaign. However, since the Stein campaign wished that the Objections be withdrawn, and since my Objections were filed intending to be for the benefit of the Stein campaign, I directed Andy to withdraw my Objections.
I went to the meeting of the State Board of Elections on Monday to be present to answer any questions that the Members of the Board may have had as to whether it really was my intent to withdraw the Objections. However, Andy refused to submit a request to the Board that my Objections be withdrawn. You are welcome to ask Andy why he did what he did: email@example.com
The bottom line is this: When I was asked by the Green Party to be the Objector, I immediately complied with that request. When I was asked by the Green Party, after taking my concerns into consideration, to withdraw the Objections, I immediately complied with that request, too. As a result of immediately complying with both requests by the Green Party, I am being demonized by certain members of the Green Party, but I don’t take that criticism seriously. That’s because, it turns out, there are some in the Green Party who are dual Party members or even multi-party members — members of other political Third Parties, such as the Socialist Party. I am presuming that much of the criticism against me comes from Green Party members who have a huge conflict of interest. They are trying to get the Green Party to do things that are not in the best interest of the Green Party but, rather, in the political interest of other Third Parties who are running candidates against my Green Party candidates and who are competing against Green Party candidates for votes.
It is not my job to help other political parties to either get on the ballot or to compete against Green Party candidates. I will not be intimidated by those traitors to the Green Party. I have called for them to get out of the Green Party and go back to the other Parties where they came from.
There are also many very sincere members of the Green Party who subscribe to the European notion of multi-party coalition democracy, whereby a Party gets a certain percentage of government power based on the percentage of the vote that the Party got at the last election. The problem with that philosophy is that this is America, where we have something called ”Majority RULES.” Whichever candidate gets the most votes gets 100% of the power. All of the other candidates get zero power. For that reason, it is necessary to consolidate the vote for Green candidates, rather than spread out the Third Party vote amongst many Third Party candidates. I want Green Party candidates to win, not merely be part of a large group of losers. Many Greens just don’t get it.