April 21, 2024

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Candidate Jorge Zavala, uninvited from Oregon Green Party convention, calls for change

10 min read
Green Party presidential candidates Jasmine Sherman and Jorge Zavala speak out about being uninvited from a convention in Oregon. The responsible party official apologized, said it was her mistake, and said candidates weren't re-invited until five days later because she was busy with work. It turned out that nobody on the State Coordinating Committee could help, because, one official said, she acted unilaterally: They didn't know what she was doing. They first learned of her email 11 days after she sent it.

by John Quetzalcoatl Murray

A second presidential candidate speaks out about being excluded from Oregon’s recent Green Party convention.

Party official Nathalie Paravicini sent email to three recognized candidates Feb. 11, saying they would not be allowed to participate. Nathalie apologized two days later, writing: “I got wrong info, apologies, will correct.” But the candidates were not re-invited until Feb. 16. As a result, only the Jill Stein campaign appeared live; Stein Campaign Manager Jason Call took questions from attendees at the convention.

Presidential candidate Jasmine Sherman planned to attend in person and shared email messages—asking why their invitation was rescinded—that went unanswered for days. On March 1, we spoke with another candidate who was uninvited: Jorge Zavala.

Jorge Zavala: I just talked to Jasmine (Sherman) and they told me to look out for your email. So Jasmine, yeah, they’re as fired up as I am. They’re pretty upset. They really want me to talk to you. We’re really together on this.

[00:01:00] So yeah, I talked to (elected Oregon Pacific Green Party official) Nathalie (Paravicini) a couple of weeks ago. She’s hooked up with Jill Stein. She did this. She knows what she’s doing. They did it on purpose. They’re rolling everyone over. It’s dirty. It’s crooked. It’s there. It exists. And I’m being completely objective about it. It’s like, wow, the data is there. So she knows what she did. I talked to her a couple of weeks ago. She called me.

[00:01:24] John Q: Nathalie told Oregon Greens she spoke with Jorge Zavala on Feb. 14 for 16 minutes. She said she apologized to him, was supportive of his campaign, and said he was kind and respectful. We asked Jorge to share his account of that call.

[00:01:37] Jorge Zavala: Okay. Let me correct this. I got that letter and I told Jasmine, ‘Don’t respond. This is a trap.’ I go, ‘I know what she’s doing,’ and I go, ‘Pull back. Because she’s going to throw everything that I say in an email to everybody.’ So I called her and left her a voice message telling her, exactly, I know what you’re doing and all this stuff.

[00:01:56] She sends me, saying, I got your voice message. She called me later and she says, she’s trying to tell me, like, explaining it, but she’s making excuses for Jill Stein. And she apologizes a lot, and ‘It’s just a misunderstanding.’ You know, she’s doing it on purpose, but she knows she’s in trouble, so that’s why she’s doing that.

[00:02:17] She backpedaled, and she apologized, and she told me she was trying to make excuses for Jill Stein, saying that Stein was, I think, sick or ill during the time of December or something, or November, you know. So they’re making all these excuses for all this frivolous stuff, they’re trying to cover up for her. They’re throwing everyone out, they’re creating interference and barriers in the ballots.

[00:02:38] They’re doing everything they’re not supposed to be doing. And they’re used to doing this. That’s the problem.

[00:02:44] And so then if you get upset and you push, then they use that against you. They exploit that. So it’s a game. They know what they’re doing and it’s going—and this is happening across the board, not allowing people to participate, and so their fair equality, our principles, they’re just all thrown on the floor. It’s all about money.

[00:03:03] And if she’s lying to you guys, and she’s telling me this, that really gets me upset, doesn’t it? So, ‘Oh, she’s helping me.’ It really needs to be exposed.

[00:03:14] John Q: Nathalie Paravicini denied that she is associated with the Stein campaign, and said in her phone call with Jorge, ‘We did not speak about Jill Stein at all.’

[00:03:24] She later said she may have talked about Jill Stein, but not in the context of the current campaign. Stein’s campaign manager said the situation in Oregon has nothing to do with the Jill Stein campaign.

[00:03:37] Presidential candidate Jorge Zavala said Oregon Greens need to hear his message.

[00:03:42] Jorge Zavala: You guys really need me. I’m a part of life that people really need. If I can do everything with almost nothing, and my disability, and building and creating all these businesses, and all of my products, and this, I’m seeing it from the ground zero.

[00:03:57] I’m there, I’m pulling, I’m dragging, I’m pushing, I’m doing it all. They need to pay attention to that. I’m their answer. Someone has been there, has done that, is fighting it, is disabled, has done it, is on top of it, slams it down, and is not going to take it. No is not an answer.

[00:04:10] And that’s why I really, again, I really like Jasmine because they’re trying. And, I know, and if I see something good, Jasmine—they’re good. They’re trying, they’re doing it. You know what I mean? They really want to hit that goal.

[00:04:22] I know that goal is not going to be met for me. I know that, I keep moving forward and try to do the best that I can and, you know, bring the technology and the grants and the pilot programs and all this stuff. I’m trying to do that no matter what and I’m going to create the Amplify Accessibility Green Tech Coalition, the political action committee PAC.

[00:04:41] So I’m creating that PAC so it can be transparent, so it’s support and push and drive. They’ll donate to the PAC, and then the PAC filters to, like, Jasmine or other people so we have better control and transparency and a better movement.

[00:04:56] But yeah, you want to make the best of the Green Party. So there’s lots of good people in there, but what I’m finding out, that the bad people, they squeezed out the good people, they’re like, they’re strong. And then, uh, the California, it’s just, dude, that’s freaking bad. I don’t even know words in a dictionary to even describe these people.

[00:05:16] You know, I was the first one that was recognized (by the GPUS as a presidential candidate), in October, 28th.

[00:05:22] I met the requirements. Violet Zitola kept pushing me, pushing me, driving me. ‘Yeah, you’re over 250. Keep doing more, you know, just in case, you know, validate it, validate it, keep getting more voter signatures,’ that I needed. So I got over 400.

[00:05:36] I invested, you know, $10,000. Yeah, I invested $10,000 in doing all of this stuff and then trying to get out there and then they—

[00:05:45] Can you imagine, they tell you if you want to be part of something, this is what you have to do to be part of it. Here’s your qualifications that you need to do. This is the time frame you need to do it in. If you achieve it, we’ll give you this. You’re like, ‘Okay.’ So you put all your time and energy into it, and you do it—

[00:05:58] And then they couldn’t validate them.

And we’re like, ‘What?’

And they go, ‘Oh yeah, we don’t know, oh, what are you talking about?’

We’re like, ‘What?’ And we’re like, ‘But all that time, you just—’

‘Oh yeah, we can’t, we don’t know what to do.’

So then I tell them: ‘You get the voter registration file from the state, like I did. Then you get that list and you match it.’

‘Um, oh, we can’t do it, we don’t know.’

‘You made me do all this stuff! I’m supposed to have a meeting. It’s supposed to be done within two weeks.’

[00:06:26] So they stalled it. They stalled it. They couldn’t validate it. They kept telling everybody, ‘We can’t validate it. We set these standards for you to meet,’ and they had a meeting, ‘but we can’t validate what you just did. Can you accept that, Jorge?’

[00:06:37] I’m like, ‘What?’

[00:06:38] So what they were doing, (Jill) Stein was pulling up. Stein, they’re pulling everything for her. She doesn’t have a website. ‘Oh, we’ll make it for her.’ She doesn’t, ‘Oh, we’ll do it.’ So everything was just done for her.

[00:06:49] So they were holding down me and Jasmine down to recognize it. And Jasmine and I got an email saying, ‘You know what? They’re not recognized. They shouldn’t be here. We should take them off.’ And I’m like, ‘Who is this guy?’

[00:07:01] So see, it starts up from the top. It started from the very beginning. Yeah, from the very beginning in that meeting in California, she said that they already had made the decisions before they even had the meeting. They didn’t even let us speak. I’m like, ‘I’m not allowed to speak?’ They’re like, ‘No.’

[00:07:15] They’re sabotaging the system. The Green Party is not going to grow because you got some big people there cutting its roots. It’s constantly trimming. They’re not allowing it. And they’re saying, ‘Oh, we’re keeping it trimmed and clean. Yeah. It’s got to grow the right way.’ But it never gets to grow.

[00:07:31] The Green Party sued California to get on the ballot. Well, now they’re on the ballot and they’re not letting the candidates on the damn thing.

[00:07:39] But we’ve got to get people more to get people together. Everybody’s fighting each other all the time, you know? And then that’s, it’s sad. Assign roles and positions and let people carry it out.

[00:07:49] Let’s get the people there. Let’s get them, let’s show everybody, let’s get the bandwagon effect going. Let’s show everybody that we’re helping, we’re supporting our people.

[00:07:57] John Q: Others on Oregon’s state committee said they had no idea Nathalie was emailing candidates and canceling their invitations.

[00:08:04] One wrote, this unilateral stuff has to stop: ‘To be blunt, this isn’t the Nathalie show.’

[00:08:10] Another Oregon Green wrote, ‘Completely uncool.’

[00:08:13] Devon Lawson-McCourt apologized to Jasmine Sherman, calling the decision ‘a significant lapse in judgment,’ and calling for public acknowledgement of the mistake, to ensure transparency.

[00:08:24] We asked Jorge Zavala: If you could speak directly to Nathalie and others you have said are creating barriers for your campaign, what would you say to them?

[00:08:32] Jorge Zavala: Well, they have to remove themselves from their position. They’re gone. They know better. They did the faulty thing. They’re going to be handcuffed and walked the f*** out. And that’s what’s going to be done. They’re going to do it again. They’re dirty. Their hands are dirty. We all see it. It’s there. The damage is done.

[00:08:50] And what did you do that for? What did you gain? You know, what was that? They’re breaking all the ethics. Is there any disciplinary action within the system? And if there was, there would have been oversight, but since we don’t have that, and none of those exist, it’s not going to be there, those people have to be removed. They’re tainted, they’re always going to be at risk of bias.

[00:09:09] And then, all this is happening to them, do you still—do you want them there? They’re going to be making moves, wrong moves, because they’re going to be scared. They’re not going to be objective anymore, you know? So they know what they’re doing.

[00:09:21] And then if you get mad, then they use it against you for a reason. It’s a game, and they know what they’re doing, but at the end of the day, did you get there, bro? Did you get where you—? No. Because you’re dirty and you’re crooked. You’re never going to get there. And then they’re going to hold everyone else down.

[00:09:37] Trust me, I know. And it hurts, but you know, you make the best out of life, but how do you— you’re really trying to do something good and they’re really, they’re trying to cut it off.

[00:09:48] So now the problem is this: Now we have barriers of the ballot and we have barriers in business and then you have barriers in all this other stuff.

[00:09:57] So we don’t want puppets. And that was the whole thing. We don’t want fake politicians. That’s what the Green Party is supposed to be about. They’re not letting the people know. It’s voter suppression because they want Stein there. They want Stein there so bad, they’re destroying the whole thing. And it’s just getting uglier and uglier.

[00:10:12] And you’re like, they could support Stein in a different way by not cutting everyone off, make the game fair. You know what I mean?

[00:10:19] I’m doing it to keep it fair, you know, to keep it clean, get everybody participating. You know, I want to make it in life too. I want my friends and people, I want everybody, let’s just, we’re just supposed to unite, pick each other up, man, you know, and, you know, help each other out, man. You know what I mean?

[00:10:36] John Q: Green Party presidential candidates Jasmine Sherman and Jorge Zavala speak out about being uninvited from a convention in Oregon.

The elected official apologized, said it was her mistake, and said candidates weren’t re-invited until five days later because she was busy with work.

It turned out that nobody on the State Coordinating Committee could help, because, one said, she acted unilaterally: They didn’t know what she was doing. They first learned of her email 11 days after she sent it.

On March 1, Jorge Zavala called for her resignation or removal from office.

While preparing to serve as guest moderator for the Pacific Green Party Feb. 24-25 convention, the author was confirming scheduled appearances when one presidential campaign replied: Their candidate would not be attending because their invitation had been rescinded and they had made other plans. The Jasmine Sherman campaign then shared detailed email correspondence. The author shared this correspondence with the State Coordinating Committee and the general membership; as SCC officers and members responded, their statements were shared at the convention and with the Sherman campaign. On March 1, Jorge Zavala called and participated in a wide-ranging 40-minute interview. This story is based on his comments relating to Oregon’s Pacific Green Party convention.

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