Post-Standard: Should Howie Hawkins run for mayor?

"From my perspective, the city's just sleepwalking into insolvency," [Hawkins] said.


Should the Green Party's Howie Hawkins run for Syracuse mayor? Help him decide in live chat

May 17, 2013 at 10:19 AM
The Green Party's Howie Hawkins on the campaign trail in 2010

Syracuse, NY - Green Party activist Howie Hawkins is likely to decide Monday whether to run for Syracuse mayor. You can help.

Discuss the pros and cons with him in a live chat at 11:30 a.m. Monday on He will also take questions on issues, including campaign finance reform, in the wake of ongoing Albany corruption scandals.

Hawkins, a graveyard-shift United Parcel Service worker from Syracuse's South Side, has run at least 17 times for public office. He ran for mayor in 2005. He has also run for the 4th District Common Council seat and could decide to run for that seat this year instead of mayor.

Hawkins biggest race was for governor in 2010. He did not win the election, of course. But it was a victory for the Green Party. The party won enough votes (59,000) to be recognized as an official political party on New York state ballots.

Monday night, Syracuse Greens will hold a convention to nominate candidates for Syracuse and Onondaga County races. Seats on the ballot this year include mayor, council president, city council, city court judge, school board and county legislature.

The meeting is at 6:30 p.m. at ArtRage Gallery, 505 Hawley Ave. All enrolled members of the party who vote in Onondaga County can vote at the convention. Unlike the major political parties, there is no weighted voting system. Each person gets one vote. You can enroll in the party on the spot and be allowed to vote.

The Green Party will also adopt a platform for issues.

Hawkins stormed out of a forum on campaign finance last month because the organizers would not let him speak. Since then, he has written op-ed pieces and done radio interviews to make his point that private donations to political campaigns are 'legalized bribes' and should be banned.

He has also been supportive of the Syracuse firefighters who are rallying in opposition to Mayor Stephanie Miner's proposal to close a fire station.

He said a campaign would also focus on schools, safe neighborhoods and economic development.

"From my perspective, the city's just sleepwalking into insolvency," he said.

Miner is running for re-election. Democrat Alfonso Davis is about to start passing petitions to call a September primary. Republicans are still looking for a candidate, but have interest from retired firefighter Tom Sexton and long-time party conservative Ian Hunter.

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Howie Hawkins is the 2017 Green candidate for Syracuse Mayor
Hawkins for Mayor