- Unified Platform
- Our Allies
- About ▼
- Act! ▼
- Volunteer! ▼
- Media ▼
- Spread the Word
- Video ►
- Michael Cavlan for Senate 2012
- Chris Hedges on the End of Empire
- Moving Forward
- Corporations are NOT people
- George Carlin
- Jill Stein: People's State of the Union
- Tommy Douglas: His Issues Were Ours
- Which Side of History Will You Be On?
- Challenging Power, Changing Politics: Sanders, Stein, Honkala on Bill Moyers
- Exclusive: As Obama and Romney Agree on Afghan War, Israel and Syria, Third Parties Give Alternative
- Expanding the 2012 Debate: Third Party Candidates Break the Sound Barrier As Obama-Romney Spar
- Expanding the VP Debate: Third-Party Candidates Challenge Biden & Ryan on War, Economy, Healthcare
- Hedges: America’s Devastated 'Sacrifice Zones' Are The Future For All Of Us
- Mouseland: where mice kept voting for cats as leaders
- Blog ▼
- Contact Us
Simultaneous with the online nomination and voting process which founded the NPA, a strategy for reaching them began taking shape. On November 9, 2010, while nominations of prospective primary challengers were still being accepted, NPA Facilitator Anthony Noel wrote:
Consider the degree to which third parties have been successful up ’til now, and why. The answers to these questions are “not very” and “bad strategy,” respectively. Most [third party] efforts have followed the same flawed plan:
(1) Build a movement
(2) Name a candidate
(3) Get trounced
[The NPA] turns that approach on its head, to wit:
(1) Network with other progressives – common people – to identify and rank potential candidates with proven, uncompromising records of activism strongly espousing progressive thought.
(2) Write the platform.
(3) Approach the desired candidates, one at a time, first choice first, second choice second, etc., until one agrees to run.
Following this strategy will allow us to “supercharge” our membership base, thanks to the discontent and disappointment of those who supported Obama and other Democrats so strongly in 2008, only to be shunned for the next two years.
More important, it will allow for building a much larger base than any Lefty third party now enjoys, much more quickly, thanks to the media attention the effort will garner during the primaries. Our media love open conflict, and challenging a sitting president in his own party’s primary is just that.
Conversely, the announcement of yet another run by yet another tiny third party’s candidate will be greeted by the media with, “Oh, really? Good for you. Now where did I put my donut…?”
If, during the campaign, we doggedly indict and attack the Democratic Party establishment for its complicity in pushing the party to the Right for the past 30 years, the media will never tire of our story, because there are so many issues on which the party has failed phenomenally. Each of which we’ll be more than happy to point out. Further, we’re the underdog – something else the media love.
Since the NPA’s founding, this strategy has evolved further:
First, while the NPA is leaving open the possibility of registering as a political party and fielding its own candidate in 2012, consultations with its Steering Committee suggest that endorsing an Independent or third-party candidate is a viable option. Whichever of these routes is finally taken, however, the second "main objective" - attempting to bring the Democrats back to their senses - has been dropped.
It is our firm belief that the Democratic Party is irretreviably compromised from top to bottom of its administrative structure at the national level. This ensures that even a truly Progressive Democrat who succeeds in being elected to federal office will be forced to knuckle under to the party establishment's decidedly conservative sympathies. This is unacceptable. Therefore any candidate seeking the NPA’s endorsement will be required to publicly pledge to uphold the Unified Progressive Platform.
The second change revises the statement that winning is not one of the NPA’s goals for 2012. We now believe winning the General Election is within reach in view of the growing international Progressive awakening - something unforeseen as recently as December of 2010.
That awakening is evidenced by:
- The early 2011 uprisings in the Mideast and our own Midwest
- Increasing withdrawals of support for the Democratic Party by organizations which have perennially supported it
- A movement begun fully a year before the 2012 Iowa caucuses to organize caucus-goers in standing as uncommitted, rather than in support of Barack Obama, and
- The momentous collapse of Canada’s Liberal Party in the May 2011 elections. The Liberals lost "official opposition party" status when the NDP (New Democratic Party), which campaigned on a strongly Progressive platform, swept them from power.
But perhaps most critically, the NPA aspires to create a lasting movement not representing only "the Left," but all Americans who value peace, a good job, a healthy planet, and an end to the privileged treatment our sold-out government now accords corporate elites. Their complicity has perpetuated illegal wars, shipped our manufacturing overseas, despoiled our environment, and stolen money from public coffers in providing corporate welfare to often-criminal enterprises.
We believe that if we model our movement on the success of America's first Progressive Era - a successful public response to the robber barons or 100 years ago - we too restore the public good back to its rightful, topmost place in our society - and this time make the victory permanent.
We invite you to join the struggle.