Richard Duffee for Congress
4th Congressional District of Connecticut
Green Party Candidate


Richard's commentary on the Ten Key Values (Word)

Long-term Platform Planks Prioritized

Platform Priorities explained (PDF)
Letter to Jim Himes, July 9, 2008 (PDF)  
Open letter to Jim Himes, January 2, 2008 (PDF) 

Nuclear disarmament: The explosion of 400 nuclear weapons could lead to irreversible climate change and "nuclear winter," ending all human life on earth.  We need to complete the process of multilateral disarmament as envisioned at the end of the Cold War. (PDF)

Global warming: Global warming is lethal. Several factors—loss of rainforests, collapse of glaciers in Greenland and Antarctica, exacerbation of El Niño—may make exponential heat spikes that will cause drought so severe that no one can survive it, flooding great enough to wipe out vast coastal areas and whole nations, horrific storms, sudden freezes, and such chaotically unpredictable weather that no agriculture can succeed. We need to ratify the Kyoto Protocol and establish a National Greenhouse Gas Initiative. (PDF)

• Domestic and international finance: Abolish the Federal Reserve Bank—Congress has no right to alienate its powers to a private corporation. Dismantle the International Monetary Fund (IMF)—its "Structural Adjustment Programs" increase poverty in recipient countries. Drastically reform the World Bank—its decisions should be made by democratic vote, not based on amount of money invested. The IMF should be replaced with an International Credit Union, as John Maynard Keynes originally proposed at the 1944 Bretton Woods conference. Ban currency speculation—currency value should be set by purchasing power parity. (PDF)

Foreign policy: We should comply strictly with all the provisions of international law we created but now disavow. We should comply with the United Nations Charter, the Nuremberg rules, the Geneva Accords, the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, and the 1996 International Court of Justice opinion that nuclear weapons are illegal. We should fully fund the UN, help it reform so it can function, and behave as a normal law-abiding nation—which Article 6 of our Constitution says we are supposed to be. We must shut down Guantanamo Bay detention camp and the School of the Americas (a.k.a. Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation). All people who have engaged in torture or given instruction in it should be identified and tried. The budget for these institutions should be redirected to the Peace Corps, which should be increased in size at least tenfold and devoted to providing clean drinking water, sanitation, minimally adequate food, shelter, education, and public health to everyone on earth who lacks it. (PDF)

• Taxes: Restore taxation on corporations and wealthy individuals to the levels of the Kennedy Administration, if not to the levels during World War II. (PDF)

Health care: There's nothing wrong with the Canadian single-payer plan—the vast majority of Canadian citizens are happy with it, including the doctors. (PDF)

Criminal justice: We need to end the race and class injustice of the failed "War on Drugs" and reduce our bloated prison population. Instead of incarcerating our young people for nonviolent drug offenses, we need to recognize drug abuse as a public health issue and treat it as such. We need a process of legalization, decriminalization, and regulation as appropriate for each abused substance. (PDF)

Immigration: As Adam Smith said, a market economy cannot work for the general benefit unless the labor market is as open to movement as the market in goods and capital. Until we can raise living standards in other countries to a tolerable level (see Foreign policy above), we must allow workers to pursue job opportunities wherever they exist.

Jobs: We can make jobs the way FDR did in 1932. We need a new Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC), this time hiring people to retrofit and insulate buildings to be self-sufficient in energy. The services should be available to everyone at cost the way the GI Bill made housing available to veterans after World War II. This new CCC will for the first time implement the Humphrey-Hawkins Full Employment Act by employing all people who can work—at a minimum wage of $15/hour or better.

Energy: The new CCC will give homeowners the means to create solar power, wind power, geothermal power, hydropower, and hydrogen power on an affordable basis for everyone by issuing loans which can be paid off by reselling energy to the electric grids. This will reduce energy monopolies of all types to a minimum. We must phase out fossil fuel-burning power plants, which contribute to global warming, as well as nuclear power plants, which create radiation threats that persist for thousands of years. (PDF)

• Sustainable economy: We need an economy based on sustainable consumption of resources. Read "Do We Really Want to Try to Own the World?" (HTML), "What's Your Consumption Factor?" (HTML) and "Jared Diamond and the Consumption Factor" (HTML)

Education: Eliminate property tax as a basis for education and replace it with progressive income tax. Congress should overrule San Antonio v. Rodriguez and recognize education as a right under the Constitution (by amendment if necessary). Performance mandates that are not matched by funds (like "No Child Left Behind") should be illegal. (PDF)

Constitutional restoration: The current Congress and Administration have violated a number of our Constitutional rights. The new Congress must act to restore these rights (PDF)

Constitutional reform: We need an Article 5 Constitutional Convention to fix the undemocratic problem of the Senate (PDF). We should also consider transitioning to a parliamentary system with proportional representation instead of our anti-democratic "winner take all" electoral system. Read more (HTML)

Electoral reform: At the state level, legislators need to enact Instant Runoff Voting or range voting to eliminate the "spoiler effect" in multi-candidate races. The Vermont legislature this year approved Instant Runoff Voting in national races. Richard will join Howard Dean in urging Connecticut and other states to follow this lead. Read more (HTML)

• Equal access to legal justice: Repeal the Clinton-era legislation restricting the scope of the Legal Services Corporation and increase funding to the level Canada has long had per qualifying person.

• Individual rights: The Bill of Rights should be strictly upheld for individuals, not for corporations. Corporations are not persons, but artificial entities created for public as well as private purposes.

• Same-sex marriage: Repeal the Defense of Marriage Act. To deprive a person of the right to marry is as oppressive as to deprive a person of the right to own property, to travel, to drive, to vote, or to contract. Read Richard's thoughts on gay marriage (PDF)

• Workers' rights: The right to unionize should be strictly enforced in all workplaces. Any person who gathers complaints of workers should be protected from retaliation even before a union has been certified. It should be illegal for a CEO's remuneration to be greater than ten times the remuneration of the least-paid employee. A rising tide should lift all boats, not just the captain.

• Agriculture: To protect struggling family farms, public funding of big agribusiness should be ended.

• Transportation: Place a moratorium on federal highway widening and redirect funds to mass transit, bicycle, and pedestrian programs. Raise Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards on all new vehicles and provide incentives for hydrogen, electric, non-food-crop biofuel, and hybrid technologies. Read more (HTML)

Puerto Rico, Guam, and other territories: Our treatment of Puerto Rico is 19th Century style imperialism undertaken purely for the sake of geopolitical military advantage with no regard for the rights and needs of the local inhabitants. Consistent with the Declaration of Independence, the USA should hold no territories as colonies or protectorates that have no voice in Congress. Territories should be placed under the auspices of the UN so that, after 5 to 10 years in which all sides have adequate time and resources to debate in public, a meaningful referendum can be held on independence or statehood. Read more: English (PDF) Spanish (PDF)

Iran: US-Iranian relations have steadily deteriorated in recent years. To address this problem and to prevent a military crisis, Richard co-founded the American Iranian Friendship Committee in 2004. Read Richard's positions on Iran (PDF)

More supporting documents

Human Rights Record of United States in 2007 (HTML)
Human Rights Watch World Report 2007: United States (HTML)

Waterboarding is Torture (PDF)


Donations Duffee for Congress c/o David Bue, Treasurer, 1-B River Oaks Rd. Westport, CT 06880
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Media contact: Remy Chevalier 203-227-2065