The Indiana Green Party (INGP) held its annual congress meeting through Zoom, on June 26th 2021. Members elected officers for the coordinating committee and two national delegates.

The congress meeting

At the annual congress meeting, members of the INGP discussed vacant positions, explained their goals once elected and listened to a number of guest speakers.

They heard from Keyan Bliss, Grassroots Director of Move to Amend which aims to end corporations’ personhood. They further listened to keynote speakers such as Peter Schwartzman, the mayor of Galesburg.

Topics discussed by candidates and guest speakers ranged from defunding the military, fundraising plans for the Green party, the legalization of cannabis, and ranked-choice voting.

Members also voted and elected officers for the INGP Committee and delegates to the national party.

Officers and Delegates of INGP 2021

Officers:
Chair: John Shearer
Vice-Chair: Cassiday Moriarity
Treasurer: Michael Cooper
Documentarian: Ken Saylor
Communications Director: Byron Holmes 

Delegates:

  1. Sarah Dillon
  2. Jacob Peterson

Sarah Dillon’s Platform

Sarah Dillon has been re-elected as one of two national delegates. She has been a member of the Green Party since 2005. Dillon has worked closely with the Howie Hawkins – Angela Walker, campaign to increase ballot access. Dillion is also a member of the US Green Party’s fundraising committee and is heavily involved in Indiana Green’s fundraising.

Dillon explained in an interview with Global Green News that once Covid-19 restrictions loosen up with the roll-out of vaccines, the Indiana Green Party will be campaigning and setting up booths at events more often. She hopes that this term the Greens will be able to make big gains in gathering support for the party

Sarah Dillon campaign for Green Party

Many of the elected members are new this year, as one of the long-time members Dillon noted, “We just had our congress, which is our annual convention, and a lot of young people are getting involved, especially on our coordinating committee, which is a very good thing we need a lot of fresh ideas

Jacob Peterson’s Platform

Jacob Peterson is new to the Indiana Green Party. Having studied music in university, Peterson made the switch to politics after being inspired by fellow musician George Wolfe. Wolfe ran for Secretary of State in the 2018 election also came from a music background. Encouragement from friends and Green Party members pushed Peterson to move up from the general member position and to run for national delegate of the Indiana Green Party.

Peterson has categorized his goals as a candidate into three pillars; solidify the Left, strategize a new party path and stand up for the trans community.

Peterson believes that in a red state like Indiana, the left should be collaborating and not dividing votes. He suggests that independent campaigns and smaller left parties, like the Green Party, select one candidate who stands for shared ideas. His biography on the Indiana Green Party website clarifies this idea:

In regards to our national platform we need to be a bigger tent embracing the ideas of those in the far reaches of leftism to the left AND right of us currently.

-Jacob Peterson

In an interview with Global Green News, Peterson explained the importance of putting the time and effort into winning over communities where they stand a chance. He said: “I know a lot of people focus on the big city centres but we can actually get pretty far just from smaller municipalities.” 

Peterson wishes to stop the debate about trans people’s rights and their gender identity. He told Global Green News that “We [Indiana Green Party] can’t be discussing right-wing debates as a left-wing party.” He calls upon all members of the Green Party to stand as allies to minority groups.

The fight to gain ballot access

As the midterms approach next year, the INGP plans to run more candidates. Dillon explained in the same interview with GGN that the biggest obstacle that they will face is obtaining ballot access. Trying to obtain ballot access in Indiana is no simple feat and the Green party will have to push hard to compete in the ballot line race.

Both delegates explained in interviews with Global Green News that there need to be changes made to the Indiana ballot access laws. Sarah Dillon states “We have one of the most restrictive ballot access laws in the US”. To gain ballot access, the party needs 2% of the last secretary of state’s vote, equating to roughly 45,000 signatures. Whereas in other states, the number can be as low as 4,000. Furthermore, the party has only one year (until June 2022) to collect these signatures. Both national delegates wish to get that number lowered in order to reduce obstacles. The Green Party of Indiana and its two delegates are also pushing for ranked-choice voting as a solution to fighting against the two-party dominated system. Dillon explains that

“A lot of people are getting tired of the two party system and are looking at other ideas and I’m very supportive of that.”

-Sarah Dillon

Becoming a visible option

Both delegates agree that the Green Party needs to have a more updated online and social media presence. COVID-19 has shown that these forms of delivering information are effective when in-person gatherings are not possible. However, Peterson and Dillon are both eager to return to old-school methods like knocking from door to door. Peterson told GGN, “It’s always important to get our faces out there so that people know who we are”.

More news from US Green Party: Green Party’s Founder Asserts That Greens Need to Refocus Their Environmental Agenda

To watch the congress meeting: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tAO1QeKtR7s

the Indiana Green Party website: https://www.greenpartyin.com/

Hailey Roop

Hailey is an undergraduate student at McGill University studying Economics and Environment. She is interested in addressing environmental and social issues through community engagement efforts. In her free time, she likes to explore the city of Montreal on foot or by bike!

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2 COMMENTS

  1. It’s too bad the Indiana Green Party has just become an authoritarian, undemocratic operation under these new officers, forcing out quite a few long-time members who were concerned about the Green Party’s purge of members and expulsion of the Georgia Green Party for endorsing the Declaration on Women’s Sex-based Rights https://womensdeclaration.com/en/declaration-womens-sex-based-rights-summary/

    The supposedly “pro-trans” folks are quite anti-feminist, misogynist, and anti-gay and lesbian. It’s an unfortunate development that’s causing splits and purges in quite a few state Green parties: Illinois, Massachusetts, Delaware, California, Michigan, Washington, Oregon, and others.

  2. FACT CHECK: Actually, the Indiana Green Party’s membership elected Jeff Sutter as National Delegate Alternate (INGP Congress 2021: https://youtu.be/tAO1QeKtR7s), BUT upon taking office, the new INGP officers exceeded the authority of the bylaws, constituting themselves as an “executive committee”. The newly elected officers of the INGP created an executive committee and used this committee’s self-assumed authority to make the decision to remove Jeff Sutter from his elected position.

    The INGP’s incoming leadership, none of whom have any long standing history with the state party, formed their brand new committee called the “executive committee” (again without CC vote or discussion) specifically to remove Jeff Sutter from his elected role as National Committee Alternate Delegate. They have given no indication of what additional they intend to assume for themselves without consultation with the membership. The formation of this executive committee is in direct violation of the INGP bylaws6. The creation of the executive committee and the alteration of the election results arises from the conflict created by the filing of the complaint by the National Lavender Greens Caucus v. The Georgia Green Party7.

    Jeff Sutter’s continued service was approved by a majority of voters who ranked him as a first, second, or third choice. “None of the above” was an option. There is no question Jeff Sutter has majority approval of the INGP membership to represent the Indiana Green Party as a member of the national Delegation for 2021-2022.

    ~Teri Ulm
    Outgoing Interim Chair 2020-2021
    Indiana Green Party

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