The numbers may not show it, but there is an active third political party emerging in Queens trying to lure voters away from the Democrats and the Republicans.
The Green Party, with only 1,408 registered members in Queens County, is putting up eight candidates for office in the 33 Queens election contests. Republicans, in comparison, are fielding 16 candidates.
With Greens running in 28 percent of all Queens races, it makes them the largest third party in terms of fielding candidates, ahead of others such as the Independence and Conservative parties.
Greens say those numbers reflect the partys attempt to reach out to voters and show that they are a viable third-party alternative.
There is a third party and its not a single-issue party, said Patrick Langhenry, a candidate in the 37th Assembly District race during an editorial meeting with members of the TimesLedger staff.
Queens has 153,807 registered Republicans and 640,838 registered Democrats, according to the state Board of Elections.
Green Party candidates also discussed their ideas for Queens, including elected community boards, rent control and levying a tax on all stock exchanges in New York City to raise funds in light of the budget deficit.
Langhenry said the stock exchange tax could target one-tenth of 1 percent of all assets traded on exchanges and potentially provide at least $6 billion for the city.
Assembly candidate Evergreen Chou in the 22nd District said the Green Party is relatively new to New York state since it formed around the 1996 candidacy of Ralph Nader and his vice presidential nominee, Winona LaDuke.
He said his Flushing district could benefit from Green Party ideas, such as decreasing congestion in downtown, enacting rent stabilization and increasing the number of small businesses.
The other Green Party candidates running for office in Queens are Ann Eagan, for the 12th state Senate District; Dorothy Williams-Pereira, for the 15th state Senate District; Gerald Kann, for the 36th Assembly District; Darius Pereira, for the 38th Assembly District.
Green Party candidates also are running for governor, lieutenant governor, comptroller and attorney general.
Reach reporter Alex Davidson by e-mail at TimesLedger@aol.com or by phone at 229-0300, Ext. 156.
©2002 Community News Group
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