Dimitri Lascaris back in Green Party leadership race
The Green Party has reversed the original decision to exclude him.
Updated with an excerpt from a statement by Mr. Lascaris at the end.
On May 26 we reported that Green Party leadership candidate Dimitri Lascaris had been blocked from running by an anonymous internal party committee. Lascaris had joined the race for the party's leadership on an eco-socialist platform and is a noted and outspoken critic of Canadian foreign policy and of Israeli government policy.
On May 28th his campaign launched an appeal of this decision and today, June 2, the Green Party announced that it had been reversed and he is back in.
The party statement regarding this read:
The Green Party of Canada announced today that it has reversed the decision to exclude Dimitri Lascaris from the party’s leadership contest.
“The Leadership Contest Committee heard Mr. Lascaris’s appeal and is satisfied with his response to the concerns raised by the vetting committee,” said Green Party Interim Leader Jo-Ann Roberts. “We commend the committee for its meticulous work in bringing those issues to our attention.
“In a grassroots party dedicated to democratic principles, it was agreed this decision should be entrusted to our members when they vote for a new leader in October.”
This decision is good news for those concerned about internal party democracy in Canada as well as for anyone wanting to see eco-socialist principles and criticism of Canadian foreign policy raised more broadly in our political discourse.
Since we first posted this Mr. Lascaris has issued a statement about his reinstatement. Here is an excerpt:
This morning, I learned that my application to participate in the Green Party of Canada leadership race has been accepted following a successful appeal.
My campaign team and I are overjoyed at this opportunity to fight for the values we hold dear: social and environmental justice, diversity, non-violence, and participatory democracy. We’re excited to be part of a diverse and dynamic field of candidates, and we look forward to continuing to collaborate with them during this race.
This process has proven that the Green Party does politics differently. Unlike the secretive vetting process used by other parties, I was given the identity of the vetting committee members and a list of their concerns. During my appeal, I was given the opportunity to submit a written statement, and to participate in a candid discussion with the appeal committee.
I applaud the appeal committee’s decision to place its trust in party members. This outcome sends a strong message to progressives across this country that the Green Party is the home of grassroots democracy. I encourage everyone in this country who wants to be part of a progressive, democratic party to join the Green Party today.