Who I’m hoping people vote for in the 2016 GPEx Election
The campaigning period for the Green Party of England and Wales internal elections is now upon us. The campaign period will be running throughout July, with the vote being conducted between the 25th of July, and the 25th of August, so that the results may be announced at the Green Party’s Autumn Conference in Birmingham on the 2nd of September.
With the announcement that Natalie Bennett is not seeking reelection, there has already been a lot of discussion about the Leadership side of the election, but these are not the only roles up for grabs. These Executive posts will be elected for a two-year term:
- Leader or Co-leaders,
- Deputy Leader(s),
- Chair of the Green Party Executive
- Campaigns Co-ordinator
- Elections Co-ordinator
- External Communications Co-ordinator
- Management Co-ordinator
- International Co-ordinator
- Trade Union Liaison Officer
There will also be two roles up for a one year term; Finance Co-ordinator and Internal Communications Co-ordinator.
Alongside the already high-profile Jonathan Bartley and Caroline Lucas job-share candidacy, other Leadership candidates are formed of a series of former Green Candidates in the 2015 General Election.
The much more interesting race will be that for Deputy Leader; usually the Green Party has two deputy leaders, however, if a job-share candidacy, i.e. Bartley/Lucas, wins the Leadership election, then there can only be one Deputy Leader. There is a much more interesting set of candidates too; both of the current Deputy Leaders, Amelia Womack, and Shahrar Ali, are standing and joining them are: the Party’s Energy Spokesperson, Cllr Andrew Cooper; East Midlands lead candidate Kat Boettge; and a couple of other former parliamentary candidates.
I’ve been giving quite a bit of thought of as to who I want to take the Green Party forward from the impressive work that Natalie Bennett has done. From helping the party achieve the largest vote share in the party’s history in 2015 to the Green membership surge, I would argue that Natalie has been our most successful Leader to date.
Who I am voting for
Leader: I’m going to be slightly controversial here, and advocate for Re-Open Nominations (RON). I feel that none of the candidates really connect with the membership of the party. Caroline Lucas is the only instantly recognisable name, but she’s standing as part of a jobshare, and is still our only MP. In my opinion, she should focus on her work in parliament and abide by her 2012 commitment of allowing new talent to grow in the party.
Deputy Leader: Without a shadow of a doubt I support our current Deputies continuing. I want them both to be able to continue their amazing and inspirational work as Deputy Leaders. Since being elected as a Deputy Leader of the party two years ago, Shahrar has made impressive work across the party. I have had the pleasure of being able to work with him as a Party Spokesperson and seen him be extremely supportive to members and make many motivational and intelligent speeches. To recycle his own words: Shahrar Ali is a real green deal!
As for Amelia, I’m struggling to know where to begin! She has been absolutely impressive in her work for these past 2 years. From her commitment and drive in the Sennedd elections, boosting the Welsh Green Party vote, to really supporting and engaging with core groups of our members such as the Young Greens and LGBTIQ Greens, Amelia is an amazing force for good in our party. I hope she can continue.
I am saddened by the possibility that we will lose one or both of our current deputies, due to a Job Share Leadership. Shahrar and Amelia have connected with the members better than any of the Leadership candidates, and it is a shame that they didn’t stand together for the position of leader.
Chair of GPEx: Clare Phipps
Finance Coordinator: Emma Carter
Elections Coordinator: Benali Hamdache
Campaigns Coordinator: Cadi Cliff and Chris Jarvis
External Communications Coordinator: Matt Hawkins, Penny Kemp, and Jennifer Nadel
Internal Communications Coordinator: Sam Coates
International Coordinator: Derek Wall and Jessica Northey
Management Coordinator: Re-Open Nominations (RON)
Trade Union Liason Officer: No preference
This was originally posted to Huffington Post, and has been cross-posted with permission from Aimee Challenor and Huffington Post. You can view the original article here. Bright Green will be reporting the 2016 Green Party of England and Wales Elections across the board from hustings and interviewing and profiling as many candidates as possible to gathering what the members are saying, so to stay up to date make sure you like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.