Endorsement Policy Amendment: GPCA Endorsements for Primary and General Election Candidates

Ranked Choice Vote ID 155
Ranked Choice Vote Endorsement Policy Amendment: GPCA Endorsements for Primary and General Election Candidates
Number of Seats 1
Ranked Choice Vote Administrator Victoria Ashley, Brian Good, Laura Wells, Eric Brooks, Mike Goldbec

02/12/2018 - 03/25/2018

Voting 03/26/2018 - 04/01/2018
Voting ends at Midnight Pacific Time

Presens Quorum






The Green Party of California is currently prohibited from endorsing candidates who have good Green values and who take no corporate money: the GPCA needs visibility, in a positive way, and putting our name on endorsement lists of good candidates is one way to get the Green Party name in the public eye.  The GPCA wants to help voters vote for good candidates, even in races where we have no candidate.  For instance, the Peace and Freedom Party can and does endorse Green Party candidates in state and federal races, but the GPCA is prohibited from endorsing Peace and Freedom candidates.  The GPCA currently cannot endorse candidates with No Party Preference or any other voter registration, even when we have no candidate running in the race.  The GPCA cannot help voters differentiate between good candidates who are aligned with Green values and take no corporate money and bad candidates (who may speak well) from the two-party system.  The current endorsement policy is confusing: county parties are not prohibited from endorsing candidates who are not Green, but the state party is; in addition, it precludes a possible endorsement even in the face of grassroots interest.  The current endorsement policy was promulgated in the pre-Top-Two era, and, if left unreformed, will further hobble party-building efforts in California.

Changing the endorsement policy would advance the party’s attempts to implement Proportional Representation so that we can have a multi-party system and not a two-party system. By expanding our endorsement options, we will demonstrate that we will work in coalitions and will endorse candidates who have green values, but who choose other political party affiliations.  As it stands, people who want to “throw their hat in the ring” and yet who have no track record with the Green Party or allied organizations are able to register Green and use our ballot line, and get an automatic advantage in the endorsement process, even though they may not be the best candidate.  Moreover, given that there are many public perceptions over which Greens have very little control, such as being marginalized or cast as “spoilers” or “third-party” candidates who “can’t win,” the endorsement area is one we can control.  We can avoid marginalizing ourselves as people who are only interested in the label “Green Party,” not the green values that we share with millions of ordinary folks in the nation and certainly in California.  Furthermore, it is common advice in social media, for example (and even in life), that if you want likes, followers and friends, you’ve got to like, follow and friend others, as long as you stay true to your values. We need to reciprocate and be proactive, not sit back and wait for everyone to switch to “team Green Party,” while we display an unwelcoming attitude.  People want a new party, but our current restrictive endorsement procedures make us look as if we do not want to be an “umbrella party” or “big tent” for all people who are aligned with our values and stances. It looks like we want to remain a small, exclusive “third” party with a narrow “sectarian” view of how change happens.

Accordingly, we recommend the following changes to the GPCA Endorsement Policy.



That the current GPCA Endorsement Policy be amended as follows:

That the policy be amended from its current text:

GPCA CANDIDATE ENDORSEMENT POLICY FOR GENERAL ELECTIONS (approved by the GPCA General Assembly, June 25, 2006, 43-6-2)

  1. The GPCA shall not make any endorsements of General Election candidates who are not Green Party members.


To read as follow:


  1. The GPCA shall not make endorsements of candidates who accept corporate campaign contributions or who belong to any political party that accepts corporate campaign contributions.


Sponsors: This proposal has been endorsed and sponsored by the Green Party of Yolo County.


Please send your discussion comments to gpca-votes@sfgreens.org