We have had locals in Maryland for over a decade working on social justice, ballot access/grassroots democracy, racial justice, environmental, and peace issues as well as running candidates for local office (which are non-partisan in MD). The Greens are a growing movement in the U.S. and across the globe. In the U.S. we have elected a state senator, numerous county and city council people, school board members, mayors, and even a municipal judge in recent years. Greens are now in a majority in the Seattle city council. Around the world, Greens sit in numerous regional, national, and the European Community parliaments, and in Germany the Greens are junior partners in the ruling coalition (holding several prominent cabinet ministries).
You have not heard much about us in Maryland because very restrictive ballot access laws (which we have worked with others to make less restrictive for all independent and third party candidates) have made it extremely difficult for us to run candidates as Greens. Until a couple of years ago it took well over 85,000 signatures of Maryland registered voters just to run a candidate for Governor or U.S. Senate (it now takes a still high minimum of 27,000), plus an additional 10,000 to run the candidate as a Green. Because we have lacked ballot status and candidates running on the ballot as Greens the media has largely ignored our activity. This in turn makes it difficult to attract interested citizens who would help get us on the ballot (a difficult spiral to break out of). Since our first organized attempt to get on the ballot for the ’96 election, we have grown tremendously, adding locals and building our organization. We are now mounting a campaign to gather the petition signatures to get on the ballot for the 2000 election and are confident we will succeed this time with our all-volunteer effort. Find out how you can help by going to www.mdgreens.org.