FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 27, 2013
Lane Says Democracy Requires more Coverage of all Candidates in NYC
James Lane, the Green Party candidate for Public Advocate, called today for changes in the NYC election system to better inform voters about the candidates running for public office.
Lane said that the city's Campaign Finance Law should be changed so that all candidates on the ballot have an opportunity to participate in at least one televised debate. Lane also said that the Board of Elections and Campaign Finance Board should better utilize the public access channels on cable to air forums and debates with the candidates.
"All candidates deserve the chance to be heard in televised debates. If it's a question of not having sponsors to cover the cost of airtime, then the Board of Elections and Campaign Finance Board should work with independent producers at local public access stations to make this happen since we the people own those channels," said Lane.
"If I weren't currently a candidate running for public office, I would have revived my Brooklyn Community Access Television (BCAT) Producer status to host such a televised debate," he added.
Lane said that he hopes the media in the last month will make more of an effort to educate voters that they have far more options than just the candidates of the two major parties. There will be at least 8 candidates on the ballot in November for Public Advocate, six for Comptroller, and 18 for Mayor.
"Democracy only works with an informed citizenry. One of the central messages of Occupy Wall Street was that the dominance of our political system by the two corporate-backed parties is a major reason why NYC leads the country in income inequality. Nothing will change as long as people are told that their only options are to vote for the candidates of the two main parties," added Lane.
Lane noted that the US' "winner take all" system is considered the least democratic among the world's democracies. Elections are further compromised by weak to non-existent restrictions on campaign contributions and the increasing corporate ownership of US media outlets.
The media often argues that candidates need to raise money or do well in the polls to show they are viable before they can get media coverage. Yet the lack of media coverage, especially of the third party and independent candidates, make the campaigns seem less viable and therefore they have more difficulty in raising money or doing well in polls.
"Elections should be about which candidate has the best ideas, not who is best able to convince special interests with deep pockets that they will do their bidding if elected. Wall Street, real estate, banking, and even taxi cab owners decide which candidates the voters get to choose from in NYC," Lane added.
Lane said it was outrageous that the City was going to spend $13 million next week for a primary runoff for the two Democratic Party candidates for Public Advocate. Tish James will be on the general election ballot regardless of the vote since she already has the Working Families Party line.
Below is a list of candidates other than Democrat or Republican running for citywide office.
Adolfo Carrion Jr. (Independence)
Anthony Gronowicz (Green)
Carl E. Person (Reform)
Daniel B. Fein (Socialist Worker)
Erick J. Salgado (School Choice)
Jack Hidary (Common Sense, Jobs & Education)
Joe Lhota (Conservative, Students First)
Joseph J. Lhota (Taxes 2 High)
Joseph Melaragno (Affordable Tmrw)
Kathy B. Huang (Taxes 2 High)
Kevin A. Finnegan (Working Families)
Michael J. Dilger (Flourish Every Person Can Shine Like The Sun)
Michael K. Greys (Freedom)
Michael Sanchez (Libertarian)
Randy Credico (Tax Wall Street)
Sam Sloan (War Veterans)
Hesham El-Meligy (Libertarian)
John L. Burnett (Conservative, Republican, School Choice)
John W. Studer (Socialist Worker)
Julia Willebrand (Green)
Richard Bozulich (War Veterans)
Scott M. Stringer (Working Families)
Public Advocate Candidates:
Alex Merced (Libertarian)
Deborah O. Liatos (Socialist Worker)
Irene Estrada (War Veterans)
James Lane (Green)
Letitia James (Working Families)
Michael K. Lloyd (Freedom)
Mollena G. Fabricant (Students First)
Robert Maresca (Conservative)
ABOUT JAMES LANE
James Lane is the Green Party candidate for Public Advocate. Lane has never had a paid government position but he has volunteered locally to improve his community. If elected, he plans on focusing on Adoptee Rights Reform, Affordable Housing, Consumer Rights, Electoral Reform, Mass Transit and Public Health among other issues. He currently lives in Park Slope, Brooklyn with his wife and child.
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For additional information please contact: James Lane at VoteJamesLane@gmail.com, 917-865-2591
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 27, 2013