Thu 13 Mar 2008
A meeting of local Greens nominated Mike DeRosa and me for elective office last night. Mike will vie for the first district state senate seat now held by Democrat John Fonfara, representing parts of Hartford and Wethersfield, and I’ll oppose Democrat John Larson, who now occupies a seat in Congress representing Greater Hartford, Torrington, and Bristol.
Local Greens, in line with the national party, are united in opposition to armed force as a political tool and are staunch advocates of consumer protection and environmental preservation. Among the highest priorities for the two candidates are single-payer health care, accountability of Bush and others for high crimes, crackdown on corporate misconduct, incentives for environmental responsibility, taxes and other sanctions for environmental pollution, reform of electric utility regulation, relief for people in poverty (including populations displaced by disasters), and the rehabilitation of corrupt institutions.
Mike DeRosa is known among progressives as the voice of “New Focus,” an interview program that airs every Friday on the University of Hartford radio station, WWUH(rebroadcast from UConn on WHUS and from Wesleyan on WESU).
Mike has run against Fonfara before and has faced a well-financed operation each time. Fonfara, like many Democrats, hews to the line of the private utility industry, an institution Mike DeRosa has studied in depth. Fonfara has opposed initiatives to facilitate public ownership of utilities and to tax private utilities’ windfall profits (realized because of deregulation, which Fonfara also supported).
Mike discussed utility issues on a recent program with a representative of “Fight the Hike,” a New Haven pressure group, pointing at the record high rates paid by Northeast Utilities customers, as compared with consumers in towns like Wallingford, which owns its power plant and transmission lines and offers electricity for much less. Electric power will be a big issue for Greens, situated as it is at the intersection of environmental protection, consumer protection, and the corruption of government by special interests.
My campaign for Congress represents the execution of a threat I issued to John Larson last Fall. I said I would run against him if he didn’t call for the impeachment of the president and vice president. I’m convinced that if Bush is allowed by Congress to finish his term, it will set a lasting precedent placing the president and vice president above the law. Members of Congress who allow that to happen must be reckoned weak and unprincipled. Larson and his colleagues are disabled by their refusal in this case to enforce our laws, and we’ll have no hope of restoring the rule of law while he and they continue in office. As a whistleblower and troublemaker, I’m offering to wade into the mire that government has become and do what I can to clean things up.
Mike and I will be collecting signatures to get on the ballot. I need about 5,000 of them, and we’ll both be asking people to circulate petitions. I put up a web site at www.fournierforcongress.org (let me know if you think I should lose the photo) and I’m going to put one up for Mike soon.