A Green Party grows in the Bronx
By Adam Wisnieski
The Bronx is getting greener.
After a successful 2010 gubernatorial election, the Green Party is again one of the state’s recognized political parties and has ballot status for the upcoming election.
That has made it easier for a number of candidates across the state to run grassroots campaigns. In the Bronx, the Green Party is running more candidates than it ever has.
Locally, Joseph Diaferia is running in a three-way race for Congressional District 16 against longtime Democratic incumbent Rep. Eliot Engel and Republican challenger Joseph McLaughlin. Carl Lundgren, chair of the Bronx Green Party, is running for state Senate District 34 against state Sen. Jeff Klein, who will appear on the Democrat, Republican, Working Families and Independence party lines. Elizabeth Perri, a Conservative, is also challenging Mr. Klein.
The Bronx County Green Party was founded in 2007 when a group of Bronxites, many who were part of the Bronx Greens, decided to advocate for issues they felt the two major political parties were ignoring.
“We’re a group of people who said we have to do something and so we got together,” Carl Lundgren, chair of the Bronx County Green Party, said.
Mr. Lundgren described the Green Party as an “activist party” dedicated to environmentalism, but also to social issues like living wages, universal health care and weaning the country off its oil dependence.
He said the country’s economic climate and unrest across the world, including the Occupy Wall Street movement, have brought attention to third parties like his.
“They are starting to see us as an alternative,” he said.
Having ballot status in New York was no easy task.