Michigan Greens Nominate Rev. Pinkney at State Convention
Benton Harbor Activist, Jailed for Quoting Bible at Judge,
Among 10 Congressional Candidates Picked in Marshall July 26-27
First Office for McKinney-Clemente Campaign to Be in Detroit
The Green Party of Michigan (GPMI) evoked the memory of
Eugene V. Debs by nominating jailed Benton Harbor community
activist Rev. Edward Pinkney for Congress at the party's
2008 Nominating Convention last weekend in Marshall.
Pinkney is one of ten GPMI candidates so far who will run
for Congress, and seventeen in total nominated at the
convention. They will all join the Green Presidential
ticket of former Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney and Rosa
Clemente, founder of the National Hip-Hop Convention, on
the November 4 general-election ballot. And more Green
candidates will be nominated at local caucuses this weekend.
McKinney has met with Pinkney and the Black Autonomy Network
Community Organization (BANCO) in Benton Harbor in the past.
And she mentioned Pinkney and Benton Harbor in her Chicago
acceptance speech July 12.
Pinkney Paying a Heavy Price for His Beliefs;
Will Now Get to Express Them by Running for Office
Pinkney will run for the 6th District seat now held by Fred
Upton, scion of the family that founded Whirlpool. Pinkney
has opposed the corporation's influence on local government
and the plans of Whirlpool-led institutions to take Jean Klock
Park away from the people of Benton Harbor for a golf course
priced for the wealthy.
He is now sitting in state prison in Jackson awaiting appeal
on a 3- to 10-year sentence for alleged mishandling of four
absent-voter ballots in a 2005 recall election of a city
commissioner who supported Whirlpool's plans. That verdict
came after one mistrial with a deadlocked jury, and despite
an affidavit by one former prosecution witness saying the
recalled commissioner had offered him $10 to say Pinkney had
paid $5 for his vote.
The Berrien County courts also overturned the recall, even
though it had passed by over 50 votes.
Pinkney's sentence was imposed last month, and a pre-sentence
probation order which came with an elaborate set of prohibitions
(including bans on any kind of political involvement -- and
making him pay the rental on his own electronic tether) was
revoked last month, because of an article he wrote last fall.
In the article, he used a slightly paraphrased quote from
Deuteronomy that a Berrien County judge ruled was not
protected by the First Amendment because it constituted a
believable threat of the wrath of God against a fellow
judge and the judge's family.
The article appeared last November in _The People's Tribune_,
a political newspaper published in Chicago.
For the latest information on Green Party of Michigan candidates,
issues, and values, please visit the GPMI Web site: