Peace & Freedom Nomination is Difficult to Predict

The ballot-qualified Peace and Freedom Party of California holds its state convention in Sacramento on August 2-3. The meeting will choose the party’s presidential nominee. Since it is so difficult for an independent to get on the California ballot, the PFP nomination is of great value. Ralph Nader, Gloria La Riva (Party for Socialism and Liberation nominee), and Brian Moore (Socialist Party nominee) would all be greatly advantaged if they could receive the PFP nomination.

The winning nominee must receive a majority of the vote at the convention. Delegates are the members of the state central committee. County central committee members are automatically members of the state central committee. They were elected at the June 3 primary. Not all the absentee or provisional ballots have been counted yet, and some counties haven’t counted write-in votes. Some of the contested races for PFP county central committee are still extremely close; sometimes one vote separates winners from losers.

Several California counties made election administration errors at the June 3 primary. The worst was in Alameda County, where some PFP members were told that they could only vote a non-partisan ballot. Also in Los Angeles County, in some districts the PFP primary ballot was two ballot cards, but some PFP voters were only given one of the two cards. Thanks to Bob Richard for that news. Here is an article from the Daily Planet of June 16 about the Alameda County problem.


Peace & Freedom Nomination is Difficult to Predict — No Comments

  1. To me this is the most exciting primary of the season! I hoping Nader can pull it out, he’ll bring in the most votes on the Peace & Freedom Party line.

  2. Here’s a scorecard of candidates (endorsements gathered from official pages of campaigns)

    Alameda County, 3rd SD (4 elected)-
    Pro-La Riva (1): Lisa Roellig (W-I)
    Pro-Nader (3): Hetty Chin (W-I), Khalid Kadir (W-I), and Kazuo Semitsu (W-I)
    Undecided (1): Dave Kadlecek
    Unknown (1): Eric Bergman (W-I)

    Alameda County, 5th SD (7 elected)-
    Pro-La Riva (2): Bill Hackwell and Anne Sadler
    Unknown to me (9): Tom Condit, Robert J. Evans, Jack Gerson, Jack L. Harrison, Norma J. F. Harrison (possible Moore), Gerald Sanders, Stanley Woods, Marsha Feinland (who is apparently automatic, but recieved votes), and Eugene Ruyle (also a P&F ‘super’Delegate)

    Contra Costa County (7 elected)-
    Pro-La Riva (3): Bruce Baginsky, Tanya Chase (W-I), Rosa Penate (W-I)
    Pro-Nader (6): Barry Burgess (W-I), Paul Lee (W-I), Jeff Ignatz (W-I), Sherill Borg (W-I), Kathryn Guruwaya (W-I), and Tarnel Abbott (W-I)
    Unknown to me (1): Bill Callison (Automatic)

    Fresno County (3 elected)
    Monica Y. Beach, John Crockford, and Georgia P. Williams elected

    Los Angeles, 43rd AD (1 elected)-
    Pro-La Riva (1): Muna Coobtee

    Los Angeles, 46th AD (10 elected)-
    Pro-La Riva (5): John Acevedo (W-I), Natividad Carrera (W-I), Joseph Delaplaine (W-I), Christina Kelly (W-I), Enrique Vasquez (W-I)
    Pro-Nader (3): Clemente Franco (W-I), Robert T. Green (W-I), Nicholas D. Rosen (W-I)
    Unknown (5): Frank Boeheim, Wayne “Bilal Ali” Henderson, Howard G. Johnson, Steve “Dogun” Richardson, Raquel Johnson (W-I)

    Los Angeles, 47th AD (7 elected)-
    Pro-La Riva (5): Preston Wood, Susan Curtiss (W-I), Pedro Ramirez-Navas (W-I), Jennifer Caldwell (W-I), David Feldman (W-I)
    Pro-Nader (4): Dylan J. Hirsch-Shell (W-I), Judy Ann Ferrari (W-I), Sonya Y. Khan (W-I), Daniel J. Hutnik (W-I)
    Unknown (2): Gary Gordon and Cindy Varela Henderson

    Los Angeles, 48th AD (8 elected)-
    Pro-La Riva (9): Corazon Esguerra (W-I), Marcella Daneshinia (W-I), Carlos Alvarez (W-I), Bethany Malmgren (W-I), Jordan Scavo (W-I), Ian Thompson (W-I), Elnasser Attallah (W-I), Ena Valladares (W-I), Lucilla M. Esguerra (automatic)
    Pro-Nader (8): Courtry Watson (W-I), Seth B. Andrews (W-I), Bella De Soto (W-I), Amos Fleury (W-I), Alleedra Derbigny (W-I), Jonathon Demitchell (W-I), Junue Millan (W-I), Joyce Arnold (W-I)

    Los Angeles 53th AD (2 elected):
    Unknown (2): Marge Hinds and Alice Stek

    Madera County-
    Unknown (1): Vickie Fouts

    Riverside County, 5th SD
    Unknown (2): Kevin Akin and Margie Akin

    Sacramento 1st SD (7 elected)
    Pro-Nader (5): Paul Alexander (W-I), Daniel Costa (W-I), Daniel Frederick (W-I), Phil Goodwin (W-I), Scott MacMillan (W-I)
    Unknown (2): Richard R. Perry and Jerry Frink

    Sacramento, 2nd SD (3 elected)
    Unknown (3): Debra Reiger, John Reiger, and CT Weber

    Sacramento, 3rd SD (3? elected)
    Pro-Nader (1): Phil Sawyer
    Unknown (2): Karen Martinez and Lanric Hyland

    Sacramento, 4th SD
    Unknown (1): Dina Padilla (automatic)

    Sacramento, 5th SD (3 elected)
    Unknown (3): Ray Reynolds, Mike Roskey, and Al Troyer

    San Francisco, 12th AD (4 elected)-
    Pro-La Riva (4): Ron Holladay, Stewart Stout (W-I), Michelle Schudel (W-I), Ellen Dewitt (W-I)
    Pro-Nader (3): Irena Konvickova (W-I), Vilaska Nguyen (W-I), and Matt Sullivan (W-I)

    San Francisco, 13th AD (7 elected)-
    Pro-La Riva (7): Richard Becker, Artie Covington, Paul Greenberg, Saul Kanowitz, Tina Landis, Gloria La Riva, Keith Pavlik
    Unknown (5): Alan Benjamin, David Campbell, Tom Lacey, Millie Phillips, and Steve Zeltzer

    The unofficial winners are Becker, Benjamin, Covington, Landis, La Riva, Phillips, and Zeltzer for a 4-3 La Riva delegation, at worst for her

    Santa Clara County (2 elected)-
    Pro-La Riva (2): Susan Muysenberg and Jon Britton

    Santa Cruz County (7 elected)-
    Pro-Nader (3): Tinker Dominguez (W-I), Louis Lafortune (W-I), Nancy Lafortune (W-I)
    Unknown to me (4): Maureen Smith, Michael J. Smith, Joe Williams, and John S. Williams

    Sonoma County (1 elected)-
    Unknown (1): Irv Sutley

    I wish I could find which candidates Moore endorsed, but I haven’t found that.

    So, this probably clears up something.

    Unless the P&F page left candidates off, then the main competitive areas are in Alameda, Los Angeles, and SF 12th.

  3. Is the number in the parenthesis the number of supporters elected? Like Pro-Nader(3) means 3 Committee members were elected that support Nader?

  4. Hope it’s Nader, but they passed on him in 2004 so this Party must be really RADICAL

  5. Well he won the non binding primary and I believe he lost that even in 2004. I hope that can be used to indicate the level of support within the party unless the rank and file P&F voters are far removed from the leadership who will decide the eventual nominee.

  6. Laine, it’s a list of candidates running, not a list of candidates elected. The parenthesis are for the total number of candidates listed.

    The Nader list is here:

    The La Riva list is here:

    The candidates list:

    And if it was unclear, the Superdelegates for the committee are

    Eugene Ruyle, Marsha Feinland, Bill Callison, Lucilla M. Esguerra, Linda “LR” Roberts, Karen Martinez (?), Dina Padilla, and Nathalie Hrizi

    I think that Frink and Weber make it no matter what the result of the impending lawsuit over write-ins.

    I would need to see a list for Moore to evaluate how strong Nader and La Riva will be by comparison.

  7. What if Nader does not win? Is his campaign collecting signatures to get him on as an independent in California?

  8. It’s my understanding that the Nader campaign is collecting petition signatures in California rather than relying entirely on receiving the PFP nomination.

  9. Ralph Nader didn’t run in the PFP primary in 2004. The only presidential candidates in that primary in 2004 were Leonard Peltier and Walt Brown (Socialist Party nominee).

  10. Thanks Richard I was not aware of that. Is it true that according to LaRiva’s website that all the Committee candidates on the ballot in San Francisco are LaRiva supporters and that those challenging them have to be written in? Seems a little on the side of LaRiva here.

  11. The San Francisco write-ins are people who could easily have put their name on the ballot, if they had known they wanted to be running back in March 2008. People who are write-ins for PFP county central committee are basically people who didn’t decide to run until it was too late to get on the primary ballot

  12. Nah, the 13th AD had 12 candidates on the ballot with 7 La Riva supporters.

    So getting 12 candidates in an area with 917 registered P&F voters is a pretty good feat (I don’t know the signature requirements for the state central committee seats though)

    And hopefully the Weber lawsuit succeeds. I’d imagine the P&F couldn’t get onto the ballot in most states under the write-in law due to a lack of members.

  13. To the best of my understanding, the problems in Los Angeles County were not that Peace and Freedom voters were given only one of two ballot cards. The main problem was that the ballots used at the polls did not have space for as many write-ins as there were seats to be filled, and there were competing full slates of write-ins in one district, so voters there would come expecting to write-in eight names but find that the ballot only had room to write-in four names.

    (The InkaVote system Los Angeles is still using, like the punchcards it replaced, don’t have separate write-in areas for each office. In these systems, the ballot is a long narrow card that just has tiny squares where ballot choices are marked (in the old punch card systems, by punching a hole through the card, and in the system now used in Los Angeles, by stamping an ink mark on the card) without any names or offices printed on the actual ballot. Thus there aren’t blank lines for write-in candidates along with names of candidates printed on the ballot, because there are no names printed on the ballot; instead, there is a separate write-in area where voters are instructed to write both the name of the candidate and the office for which they are running. In Los Angeles County, the ballots used at polling places only had room to write in four candidates on a long stub, while the ballots used by absentee voters had room on a “privacy sleeve” to write in fifteen candidates.)

    There were two competing slates of eight Peace and Freedom write-in candidates running in one L.A. district, and one slate including five write-in candidates against another slate of three write-ins running in another L.A. district. As far as I can tell, though there were quite a few Republican write-in candidates in Los Angeles County, there were no more than four in any one district, so only Peace and Freedom candidates were affected by this problem there.

  14. To add to the Weber lawsuit comment, I don’t know if there’s a specific legal argument to say that applying a static number of the general population as a requirement for what are basically closed primaries is unfair. I don’t know how many choices DTS voters get, that might be relevant.

    But if it were a requirement like 2% of registered voters in the party, then it would be a lot more generous.

    If a Democrat wanted to win via write-in somewhere, he would require a vastly lower percentage of party support than a P&F/LP/AIP candidate.

    Not to mention that it would be virtually impossible for a major party candidate to finish first over an on-ballot candidate as a write-in and finish below the limit. (Except maybe a Republican in Oakland or something)

  15. As a candidate for [California] State Assembly and a contenscious PFP member [1992 – 2002] I have a liteney of gripes against the not – so – grass – roots Peace and Freedom Party. But they do not deserve such illegal treatment from the county registrars of voters or the state Secretary of State!

    But it is not a recent phenom! No one should have been surprised! I had the same problems since 1992, and have gone head to head with a series of Sandy Ego County officials [the great majority doing some thing else now – thank good ness]!

    It pays to hold your [Constitutional] ground! Same in court. “They” won’t take your paper work? Demand it be filed! [Worked (enventually) every time!]

    Nader’s Raiders [the reasonable slogan, rejected for the forgettable ‘Declare Your Independence’ in 2004] are their own worst enemy! The vacationing East Coast law students misdirecting the ballot access via long distance, completely blew it! This was over the valid expertise of the SUCCESSFUL historic Dump Davis local yokels. [But hey, what did we know?]

    Nader P2008? Don’t call me, I might call you and I might even vote for this ‘past shelf date’ American Icon! But don’t bet the web site on it!

    ‘Mickey Mouse’ as a write in? Any one got a better idea that ‘Slick Willie Lite Obama’?

  16. So basically the candidates who are backing Nader didn’t decide to run until after Nader announced he would not be seeking the Green nomination? Unfortunate, I would have hoped Nader would be a bit more prepared to make it on the ballot in California. I hope for all the best during the P&F nomination process. Does anyone have any idea when we may have some general results from the Committee race?

  17. If the “popular” vote means anything, Nader should get the nomination. Of course, it doesn’t. Delegates will vote based on just about any criteria.

    Results of the Feb. primary:

    Ralph Nader 2,620 40.7%
    Cynthia McKinney 1,385 21.5%
    Gloria E. La Riva 1,292 20.1%
    Brian Moore 355 5.6%
    John Crockford 346 5.3%
    Stewart A. Alexander 340 5.2%
    Stanley Hetz 106 1.6%

    Crockford and Hetz have withdrawn, and Alexander is running for VP with Moore. Cynthia McKinney is still running, and should have the support of numerous delegates. Many of the purists in P&F don’t like Nader because he isn’t “socialist” enough. Others don’t like La Riva because of the perception that her political group is using P&F, and is not very democratic. The Socialist Party candidates Moore and Alexander are probably favored by most of the old timers in P&F, but they have not done much to recruit new delegates. Still, Moore may end up the compromise choice if Nader and La Riva deadlock. He’s bound to run a little noticed, and uninspiring campaign.

  18. It would be an absolute tragedy if Peace and Freedom Party were to nominate the Socialist Party ticket of Moore-Alexander for California’s November ballot. The Socialist Party remains right centerist and has never yet been able to grab the Peace and Freedom Party’s presidential nomination these past forty years. 2008 should not be their year. However, because the current State Central Committee is so small, and so weak, with so few candidates for state legislature or Congress, a small number of people will make the decision. While Ralph Nader won the most votes in the P & F Primary, it is quit likely that he will not be given the nod by the apparatchiks who control the formal party structure. Hopefully, the August Convention, which still doesn’t even have a set location, will nominate Gloria LaRiva. LaRiva is a dedicated left socialist who has proven her ability to win primaries and effect the outcome in general elections. A revolutionary woman like Gloria articulating socialist values in both Spanish and English throughout the country is exactly what the country needs.

  19. Mr. Anon who has several posts above is actually Mr. Kevin Akin (kevinakin1950 AT Riveride County, California. He sabotaged Nader’s candidacy four years ago in the Peace and Freedom Party’s primary and convention process. Akin comes out of an old left background and training (I’d mention his earlier affiliation but he’d again accuse me of “redbaiting” as he’s wont to do in other forums). Anon/Akin’s job is to make sure that Peace and Freedom Party does not put up a candidate like Nader who would not only breath life into the party, but who might, heaven forbid, deny the California’s Electoral College vote to the nominee of the Democratic Party. Anon/Akin can talk a radical game, but his end play is always to make sure the “Lessor of Two Evils” prevails in the vote for President of the United States of Amerika. However I can’t let that political disagreement keep me from wishing him and his bride a Happy 39th wedding anniversary on the 28th of this June.

  20. Rouge,

    On what grounds do you substantiate this? What happened in 2004 when Nader attempted to seek the Peace and Freedom nomination and can we expect the same situation this year if what you say is true?

  21. Let’s not lose sight of where this started, namely with gross errors on the part of election administrators in at least three counties, that cumulatively could well affect the presidential nomination of a political party. I’d like to remind Laine, Rouge, bobbi, Jim Smith, and others that this website is about ballot access and related issues that affect small parties and independent candidates. It is not a forum for the internal debates of P&F or any other organization (although Richard is extremely tolerant in this regard).

    Does anybody have any further news on what — if anything — is happening to measure and/or repair the damage that was done on June 3? Or is everybody too wrapped up in promoting their own factional agendas for P&F to care about that?

    I appreciate the on-topic contributions of Anon. and Dave Kadlecek.

  22. Laine Says:
    June 17th, 2008 at 2:41 pm
    So basically the candidates who are backing Nader didn’t decide to run until after Nader announced he would not be seeking the Green nomination? Unfortunate, I would have hoped Nader would be a bit more prepared to make it on the ballot in California. I hope for all the best during the P&F nomination process. Does anyone have any idea when we may have some general results from the Committee race?

    Phil Sawyer responds:

    Actually, Ralph Nader has had a great deal of support within the Peace and Freedom Party for a long time. The reason that I had to run as a write-in candidate for County Central Committee this year was because I was a member of another party (the Green Party of California) during the twelve months before the filing deadline. I have been in and out of PFP since the time that I first became a member (12-1-75).

    It is my opinion that PFP has been controlled for a long time by a faction (of one sort or another) that does not truly represent the Party registrants as a whole. That is why I have referred to the people of those factions for so long as the “Old Guard Leaders.” That situation is about to change – hopefully!

    By the way, Laine, it appears that all six of us who were running as pro-Nader/Gonzalez CCC candidates in Sacramento County were elected.

    Thanks to everyone who has contributed all of the above information!

    PS: Whether it is true or not, it really appeared that PFP, by not nominating the Nader-Camejo ticket in 2004, was afraid of the Democratic Party.

  23. Good the hear Phil, I am glad you and the other candidates in your county were elected.

    Sorry if people feel as though my posts are off topic. Being geographically isolated from politics I am interested in, the internet is one of the few ways I can find out any information on third party politics.

  24. Friends,
    This is the real Kevin Akin, currently the South State Chair of the Peace and Freedom Party. I never EVER put up anonymous or pseudonymous posts, unlike the cowardly “Rouge.” No, I did not write the “Anon” posts here. “Rouge” got everything else wrong too, of course. I did not sabotage Nader’s candidacy four years ago. Nader declined to enter our primary, Peltier got a large majority, and most delegates (including me, as it happens) ratified that choice at the convention. (Yes, it was really that simple, and all the speculation about motives is so much hot air.) I am strongly committed, and always have been, to building a strong Left “third party,” and everyone in P&F knows it. I have repeatedly said and written that any of the four choices going into the August convention is acceptable to me, though I have decided for whom I will vote on the first ballot. And my wife and I recently celebrated our 35th anniversary, which does not occur on the 28th of June.
    To return to the actual subject, let me add a few notes. I am the convenor of the Credentials Committee for the convention, and know as much as anyone about the count. About 20 of the (roughly) 96 delegates have given no indication of having yet chosen a candidate. Very similar numbers appear to favor La Riva and Nader, with Moore in third place, and somewhat fewer for McKinney. But we do not have any such thing as pledged delegates, everyone is free to choose for themselves for whom to vote, and the situation after the first ballot is sometimes markedly different from the situation just before it. The one thing of which you can be certain is that there are no “apparatchiks” in charge of the process.
    The campaign for the support of uncommitted SCC members has only just begun, so things will change. Also, as someone will certainly be eliminated in early balloting, second choices are important. -Kevin Akin

  25. Thank you, Laine!

    Kevin Akin Says:
    June 20th, 2008 at 6:53 am

    … [ snip] … Nader declined to enter our [2004] primary, Peltier got a large majority, and most delegates (including me, as it happens) ratified that choice at the convention. (Yes, it was really that simple, and all the speculation about motives is so much hot air.) … [snip] …

    Phil Sawyer responds:

    It was not quite that simple, actually. Walter Brown (the nominee of the Socialist Party USA) came in second place in the primary election. There is no reason why the State Nominating Convention could not have chosen him instead of Leonard Peltier. Otherwise, why not just make the primary election binding? In the same manner, the SNC could have chosen Ralph Nader.

    These things are tricky. It is very understandable that the delegates (in 2004) who voted for Leonard Peltier might have felt compelled to do so. It still was a very unfortunate selection, in my opinion.

    While we do not have pledged delegates, many of us have made our preferences known. During my campaign for County Central Committee (and even before) I said and wrote that my choices in 2008 for the PFP nomination are: (1) Ralph Nader; (2) Cynthia McKinney; (3) Brian Moore; and (4) Gloria La Riva – in that order. That is how I intend to vote at the Convention.

  26. Can you substantiate how the Socialist Party is a right-centrist party? By almost any measure, the Socialist Party is is to the *left* of the Party for Socialism and Liberation. For one, it isn’t afraid to keep the socialist message when its actually engaging in activism. For another, it doesn’t equate socialism with the policies of any demogogic leader who happens to be critical of imperialism. As to the claim that the campaign is likely to be uninspiring and unnoticed, then compare the level of support it currently has (beyond the West Coast) to the level of support of the La Riva campaign. Compare the amount of press coverage and number of interviews outside of the socialist press between the two as well. The Socialist Party is the emerging apparatus for independent socialist electoral action in the United States. The PFP is the same apparatus in California. It’s time for two to unite.

    SP Platform:
    SP Presidential Campaign:

  27. Matt Says:
    June 20th, 2008 at 9:28 pm

    … [snip] … The Socialist Party is the emerging apparatus for independent socialist electoral action in the United States. The PFP is the same apparatus in California. It’s time for two to unite. … [snip] …

    Phil Sawyer responds:

    That is precisely what I had been suggesting for many, many years (until I finally gave up). The Old Guard Leadership of both Parties always came up with many reasons why that that could not be done. Such negativity! Hopefully a new dawn of politics is now emerging and more people will start to see the promise of positive thinking!

  28. At age 18, Kevin Douglas Akin was married to Anne Patrice Brown, also 18, on June 28, 1969 in Riverside County, California. That makes it a 39th wedding anniversary this June. Congratulations!

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