|Chairperson||Charlene DiCalogero and Maha Visnu|
|Headquarters||50 Atherton St. Roxbury, MA 02119|
|National affiliation||Green Party of the United States|
|Seats in the Upper House|
|Seats in the Lower House|
The Green-Rainbow Party (GRP) is one of four political parties officially recognized by the Secretary of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. The party is a local state affiliate for the wider Green Party of the United States. Originally the Massachusetts Green Party, it was formed in 1996 and recognized in 2000. It merged with the Rainbow Coalition Party in 2002 and rebranded as the Green-Rainbow Party. The GRP has supported Green Party presidential candidates such as Ralph Nader, David Cobb, Cynthia McKinney and Jill Stein. It has also run candidates and pushed for political support at the state and municipal level. As of 2018, there were 15 Green-Rainbow Party elected and appointed office holders in Massachusetts (see list below.) As of October 15, 2018 the official party's membership ranks stood at 4,314 members. On May 18, 2019 at the Green-Rainbow Party's state convention, the convention passed a resolution expressing the will to change the name of the party to the Massachusetts Green Party or the Green Party of Massachusetts. A committee will be formed to look into the feasibility and logistics of making this change.
Like most North American Green parties, the basis of the Green-Rainbow Party's platform stems from the 10 key values. The 10 key values are: grassroots democracy, ecological wisdom, social justice and equal opportunity, nonviolence, decentralization, community-based economics, feminism, respect for diversity, personal and global responsibility, and future focus and sustainability.
For some years, the party was involved in co-organizing an annual March to Abolish Poverty. Like many small parties that view the Democratic and Republican parties as creating difficult ballot access laws, the party has also pushed for electoral reforms, particularly instant run-off voting (IRV). The party also champions universal health care and strongly supported marriage equality, long before the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court's decision to allow same-sex marriages within Massachusetts. The Green-Rainbow party supports a much faster transition from fossil fuels to safe, clean renewable energy than the Democratic and Republican parties. It sees climate change as an existential emergency.
Founded in 1996 as the Massachusetts Green Party, the party attained official political party status in 2000 when the Greens ran Ralph Nader and Winona LaDuke for president of the United States. Official political party status in Massachusetts affects how political groups can use finances, and official political parties are guaranteed ballot access. The Nader ticket received 6% of the vote in Massachusetts, where state law requires 3% during state and national elections for establishing and maintaining official party status. In 2002, the party entered the state gubernatorial race for the first time with Jill Stein as the candidate for governor, Anthony Lorenzen for lieutenant governor, and James O'Keefe for treasurer. Stein and Lorenzen received over 3% and O'Keefe received almost 8% resulting in maintaining state party status in Massachusetts for 2002. An alternate method to establish and maintain state party status in Massachusetts is to have over 1% of voters registered in their party, a threshold that Green-Rainbow has not met yet but is working towards.
In 2002, the party was renamed when it merged with the Rainbow Coalition Party, which was founded by former State Representative Mel King. King endorsed Stein's 2002 candidacy for governor, saying "Jill Stein is the only candidate who will speak truth to power. She's the only one that makes issues of racism and social justice integral parts of her campaign".
In 2004, with David Cobb as its presidential candidate, the Green-Rainbow ticket was unable to meet the required 3% threshold, and subsequently lost recognition in Massachusetts of state party status. Losing state party status has the results that the expenditures on Massachusetts candidates are subject to the state laws regulating political action committees (or PACs). In addition, the party name is no longer printed on voter registration forms as an option to check off, and the party must collect signatures to place presidential candidates on the ballot; state and local candidates always need signatures to be placed on the ballot.
Also in 2004, Green-Rainbow Party candidate Jill Stein ran for state representative in the 9th Middlesex District, which included portions of Waltham and Lexington. She received 3,911 votes (21.3%) in a three-way race, ahead of the Republican candidate, but behind Democratic incumbent Thomas M. Stanley.
In March 2006, at its nominating convention, the party nominated five candidates for statewide office: Grace Ross for governor, Wendy Van Horne for lieutenant governor, Jill Stein for secretary of the Commonwealth, James O'Keefe for treasurer, and Nathanael Fortune for auditor. In early April, Nathaniel Fortune withdrew his candidacy. The races for secretary of the Commonwealth and treasurer were two-way races between the Democrats and Green-Rainbows, with Green-Rainbows polling higher than ever before on a statewide level. In an April 3, 2006 poll by Suffolk University and WHDH, O'Keefe polled at 21% and Stein at 8%. The Ross / Van Horne team, likely to face three other opponents in the election, polled at 2%, before having officially announced.
Ross and Robinson only garnered 2% of the vote in the gubernatorial election. However Stein won 18% in the race for Secretary of State and James O'Keefe won 16% in the race for State Treasurer. As a result, the Green-rainbow Party once again qualified for ballot access.
Jill Stein officially announced her entrance into the governor's race on the steps of the Massachusetts State House in Boston on February 8, 2010. As of February 25, she was polling at 3% in that race. Stein announced on April 3, 2010, that her lieutenant governor running mate would be Richard P. 'Rick' Purcell (born December 21, 1959), an ergonomics specialist from Holyoke. Purcell was born in 1959 in Albuquerque, New Mexico and grew up on the Tohajiilee Indian Reservation in New Mexico. He moved to Holyoke, Massachusetts in 1974 and graduated from Chicopee Comprehensive High School in 1977. He works as an ergonomics specialist with Baystate Medical Center in Springfield, Massachusetts. Purcell served as a buck sergeant during the Gulf War. He was also stationed in Korea and Germany. Purcell sought election to the Holyoke City Council in 2002, 2007, 2011 and 2013.
Beyond Stein's run for governor, three additional candidates ran for office as Green-Rainbow candidates: two for the state legislature and one for state auditor. In the state's 4th Berkshire District, Lee Scott Laugenour announced that he would challenge incumbent State Representative William "Smitty" Pignatelli. The state's 3rd Berkshire District saw a race between Green-Rainbow Party candidate Mark Miller and incumbent candidate Christopher N. Speranzo. Nat Fortune rounded out the ticket, running for Massachusetts Auditor.
On election day Mark Miller received 30 percent of the vote in a four way race, losing by 192 votes, the best result for any Green running for state legislature in the United States in 2010. Miller received 1748 votes, and was bested by the Democratic candidate Patricia Farley-Bouvier who received 1940 votes (33%). Two other candidates, Pam Malmurphy(I) (1325 Votes- 22%) and Mark Jester (R) (899 votes- 15%) also ran. In the race for State Auditior, Nat Fortune received 5 percent of the vote guaranteeing the Green-Rainbow Party official party status in Massachusetts for the subsequent two years.
In 2012, Green-Rainbow Party leader Jill Stein won the presidential nomination of the Green Party of the United States. Stein received 456,169 nationwide while advocating for a Green New Deal to address climate change and financial crises. In Massachusetts, Stein received 19,672 votes (1%). Because Stein did not receive 3% of the vote statewide, the Green-Rainbow Party lost party status.
In November 2014, Green-Rainbow Party Statewide candidates Danny Factor (Secretary of State), Ian Jackson (Treasurer) and MK Merelice (auditor) all received more than 3% of the vote which resulted in the Green-Rainbow Party gaining back official party status.
The Green-Rainbow Party ran three candidates for office in the November 2015 election: Darlene Elias for Holyoke City Council, Plinio Degoes for Cambridge City Council and Sean Connell for Fall River School Committee. None of the candidates won their election, but all made strong showings, considering that they were all first time candidates.
The Green-Rainbow Party Massachusetts presidential primary took place on March 1. Five candidates appeared on the ballot, the results are as follows:
|Massachusetts Green Party presidential primary, March 1, 2016|
All members of the party were able to apply to be delegates to be sent to the national convention. The number of voters that took part in the election slightly increased from the 1,554 that took part in the 2012 primary. On August 6, 2016 at the Green Party Presidential Nominating Convention in Houston, Jill Stein was nominated as the Green Party candidate for President and Ajamu Baraka was nominated as the Green Party candidate for Vice-President.
In the November 8, 2016 general election, presidential candidate Jill Stein received 1.4% of the vote in Massachusetts, Green-Rainbow Party candidate for State Representative Charlene DiCalogero (12th Worcester District) received 20% of the vote in a two-person race, and Green-Rainbow Party candidate for State Representative Danny Factor (14th Middlesex District) received 3.3% of the vote in a three-way race.
On May 2, 2017, Sharon Moss, Green-Rainbow Party member and former Central Massachusetts Green-Rainbow Chapter Co-Chair was elected as a Town Meeting Member, Precinct 8, in Shrewsbury. This was a competitive race with 8 incumbents and 14 total candidates for 10 seats.
On May 8, 2017, Green-Rainbow Party member and former candidate for State Representative Charlene DiCalogero was elected Library Trustee for the town of Berlin, Massachusetts. DiCalogero received 648 of the 649 votes cast in the election.
On May 9, 2017 Green-Rainbow Party member Damon Jespersen (from the village of Byfield, Massachusetts) was re-elected selectperson from the town of Newbury, Massachusetts in a contested race. This was a competitive race with Jesperson being one of three candidates vying for two seats. Jesperson finished second with 690 votes ahead of the third place challenger who had 611 votes.
In June 2017 Green-Rainbow Party member and Smith College Physics Professor Joyce Palmer-Fortune was elected selectperson from the town of Whately. Palmer-Fortune defeated her only opponent by a slim 37 vote margin. Palmer-Fortune previously had held the seat from 2009-2015 and had promoted clean, green energy solutions during her tenure.
In the Spring of 2017, Gus Steeves was re-elected to the town of Southbridge town council.
In the Summer of 2017, Arlington Massachusetts resident and former Green-Rainbow Party candidate for Treasurer Ian Jackson ran for State Senator in a special election held on July,2017 to fill a vacant State Senate seat in the 4th Middlesex District and run 11% of the vote. Also Green-Rainbow Party member Sean Connell ran for Fall River School Committee and was eliminated in the election runoff, finishing in 16th place.
In the Fall of 2017, GRP members Darlene Elias and Juan G. Sanchez ran for the City of Holyoke City Council, both finishing second with 42% and 30% of the vote respectively.
Also in the Fall of 2017, in an election held on November 7. 2017, GRP member Laurance Kimbrough won election to the School Committee in the City of Cambridge. Laurance was the 6th and final candidate elected under the ranked choice voting system used in Cambridge.
In December 2017, GRP member and elected Library Trustee of Berlin, Charlene DiCalogero, ran as a candidate for State Senate in the Special Election in the Worcester and Middlesex District that was held on December 5, 2017. She received 201 votes, or 1.3%.
In the November 2018 statewide elections, two Green-Rainbow Party Candidates--Juan Sanchez of Holyoke (Candidate for Secretary of the Commonwealth, 3.8% of the vote) and Jamie Guerin of Northampton (Candidate for State Treasurer, 3.5% of the vote) both reached the 3% of the vote threshold to once acquire for the Green-Rainbow Party official state party status. As a result, the Green-Rainbow Party became one of four recognized political parties in Massachusetts.
Additionally in the November 2018 elections, Jed Stamas, (Green-Rainbow Party Candidate for State Auditor) received 2.6% of the vote, Matthew Moncreaff, (Green-Rainbow candidate for State Representative, 1st Worcester District) received 22.1% of the vote, Danny Factor (Green-Rainbow Party Candidate for State Representative, 14th Middlesex District) received 10% of the vote, Yasmine Khdeer (Green-Rainbow Party Candidate for State Representative, 2nd Worcester District) received 3% of the vote, and Green-Rainbow Party endorsed unenrolled candidate Terra Friedrichs won 2% of the vote in her candidacy for State Senate in the Middlesex and Worcester District.
In municipal elections earlier in 2018, Green-Rainbow Party member David Spanagel was elected Library Trustee in the town of Lancaster, Massachusetts, and Green-Rainbow Party member and incumbent Town Meeting Member Brian Moss was re-elected in Shrewsbury, Massachusetts, Precinct 8.
In March 2019, Green-Rainbow Party member Jim Snyder-Grant ran for Acton Board of Selectmen and won over 1,000 votes (nearly a third of the vote in a three-way race) and lost by 31 votes. GRP member Edward 'Tar' Larner was re-elected to the Concord Housing Authority and GRP member Matthew Moncreaff was elected to the town of Princeton Select Board.
Since 1996, the national Green Party has run a candidate for President of the United States. In 2000, the Green Party of Massachusetts placed Ralph Nader, the nominee of the Green Party of the United States, on the statewide presidential ballot. The highest vote total came in 2000, when Ralph Nader received over 173,000 votes. The lowest vote total came in 2008, when Cynthia McKinney was the nominee. Her campaign received only 6,550 votes. Nader, who was also on the ballot as an independent candidate, received more than 28,000 votes.
|1996||Ralph Nader (write-in)||4,734 (0.19%)|
|2000||Ralph Nader||173,564 (6.42%)|
|2004||David Cobb||10,623 (0.36%)|
|2008||Cynthia McKinney||6,550 (0.21%)|
|2012||Jill Stein||20,691 (0.65%)|
|2016||Jill Stein||46,910 (1.4%)|
The Green-Rainbow Party (GRP) currently has seven local chapters: Greater Boston, SouthCoast, North Shore, Assabet River Valley, Central Massachusetts, Pioneer Valley, and Young Greens of UMass Boston
There is also a Green-Rainbow City Committee in Boston and a Green-Rainbow Ward Committee in Ward 11 of Boston (Jamaica Plain). The Party also has an elected State Committee ('State Com') that meets in person four time per year (and at other times by phone conference) , and Administrative Committee ('Ad Com') that convenes several times per month and working committees such as Membership Diversity and Volunteer Recruitment (MDVR), and Candidate Development and Legal (CDLC), all which normally convene by phone conference. The body with the highest amount of power in the Green-Rainbow Party is its State Convention (consisting of all GRP members) which convenes once per year. The last annual State Convention held was May 18, 2019, in Worcester, and the next one will be held in May 2020. In July 2019, the Green-Rainbow Party will host the Green Party Annual National Meeting which will take place at Salem State University in Salem, Massachusetts. On May 18, 2019 at the Green-Rainbow Party's state convention, the convention passed a resolution expressing the will to change the name of the party to the Massachusetts Green Party or the Green Party of Massachusetts. A committee will be formed to look into the feasibility and logistics of making this change.
Co-Chairpersons: Charlene DiCalogero and Maha Visnu
Party Treasurer: Brian Cady
Membership Director: John Blumenstiel
Communications Director: Gretchen Clarke
"He has a long history of involvement with the Greens," asserts Galvin, referring to the Green Party, which lost its designation as an official political party in 2004 and is now called the Green-Rainbow party.