PRESS RELEASE February 2004
Iowa City - Ralph Nader's announcement that he will run for President as independent does not preclude his nomination by Greens, said Iowa Green Party (IAGP) Media Coordinator David Larson, who noted that the Greens are already considering six announced candidates within the party. "Many of us worked on Nader's 1996 and 2000 Green Party campaigns," said Larson. "He's the reason a lot of voters joined the Green Party to begin with. And some of us would work for him now. Some of us in the IAGP are backing a 'Draft Nader' effort."
Other Iowa Greens, like US Senate candidate Daryl Northrup, support David Cobb as the party's Presidential candidate. Cobb, a longtime Green Party member and former legal counsel to the party, has been actively campaigning across the country, including a visit to Iowa last week.
The IAGP will choose its preferred candidates at their state convention in Waterloo on April 10. Iowa will send delegates to the national Green Party nominating convention in Milwaukee in June. There, Green delegates from across the US will pick a single candidate.
"We believe the IAGP is in a very healthy position right now, with several candidates -- like Cobb and possibly Nader -- from whom we can choose," said IAGP Co-Chair Larry Orr. "Greens are continuing their robust discussions of all candidates. It seems to me that Cobb might be the favorite at the moment, but Nader's announcement has livened the discussion. We won't have a definite answer until our state and national meetings. Our discussions had even included the possibility of supporting progressive Democratic candidates while that seemed a real possibility. Some of our stalwarts worked for Dean and Kucinich, and are now returning to the Greens to continue to work for progressive issues."
Larson noted that the Green Party is the one party that advocates Nader's antiwar, anti-Patriot Act, pro-public interest agenda. "It's largely the same agenda with which Howard Dean attracted so many young voters who'd stayed out of politics previously," said Larson. "Given our similar views, the Green Party is a logical choice for Iowa's former Dean supporters."
"To sum it up," said Orr, "what unites us is the necessity for third-party political action, for progressive political action, in Iowa and in the nation."