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News :: Government & Elections

Peace and Freedom Party picks Leonard Peltier for President

Delegates to the Peace and Freedom Party convention, July 31, selected Native American political prisoner Leonard Peltier as their presidential candidate for 2004. The delegates, meeting in Los Angeles, rejected an impassioned plea from Ralph Nader supporters for his nomination. Nader appeared at the convention a few hours before the vote but was unable to sway a majority of the delegates, many of whom were already committed to Peltier. Nader did finish second in the voting ahead of Walt Brown, who has been nominated by the Socialist Party USA as their presidential candidate.

The Peace and Freedom Party apparently was the last hope of Nader to get on the California ballot unless a petition drive is successful in qualifying him as an "independent" candidate. Democrats have been challenging his efforts to get on the ballot, particularly in certain key “swing� states.

Many believe Leonard Peltier was framed for the killing of two FBI agents at Wounded Knee in 1975. A worldwide effort to free Peltier has been endorsed by Bishop Desmond Tutu, Mikail Gorbachov, Madonna, Dustin Hoffman, Bono, the European Parliament and more than 300 other world leaders and celebrities. He has been nominated for this year’s Nobel Peace Prize. Peltier’s running mate is Janice Jordan, a community and Native American rights activist in San Diego.

Peltier will join the following presidential candidates on the California ballot on Nov. 2: Michael Badnarik (Libertarian), George W. Bush (Republican), David Cobb (Green), John Kerry (Democrat), Michael A. Peroutka (American Independent).

This is the 250-work statement from Leonard Peltier for placement on the California Secretary of State's website.

* * * * * Luther Standing Bear, a Sioux Chief, stated: “Out of the Indian approach to life came a great freedom, an intense and absorbing love for nature; a respect for life… and principals of truth, honesty, generosity, equity, and brotherhood as a guard to mundane relations.� These values will guide me as president. I am a Native American, deprived of my language, culture, and traditions; yet, I have survived the genocidal government policies against Indigenous Peoples. I will ensure equal rights to liberty, education, employment, housing, and health care, regardless of race, ethnicity, gender, religion, or sexual orientation. I will work towards conflict resolution without the use of violence and ensure self-determination for all peoples.

I live with injustice every day. Caged for over 28 years for a crime I did not commit, I am a political prisoner wrongfully convicted by a government that indisputably withheld and fabricated evidence, as well as coerced witnesses. No branch of the government will correct this injustice. At the root of this injustice are the oppressive policies of the U.S. government against people of color and those with dissenting opinions. I pledge to eliminate such policies. I will abolish the federal death penalty and restore the constitutional protections which ensure justice for all people. Our environment is the essence of our life, but our government in partnership with greedy corporations haphazardly destroys it for the monetary benefit of a few. I will protect our environment to ensure our survival and the survival of our future generations. * * * * *

Leonard Peltier Defense Committee

LeiLani Dowell for Congress

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