SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — They’ve occupied Cesar Chavez Park, they’ve set up shop in front of the old City Hall, and now the so-called 99 percent have a new spot in mind: county government.
If you can’t beat ’em, join ’em? Well, not quite. Supporters explain the next step in the Occupy movement is to occupy the government.
“For a grassroots movement to take off, yes, you have to organize in the streets but the next is you have to occupy the government,” said Gary Blenner, an Occupy supporter who is running for a Sacramento County supervisor seat.
Civil rights lawyer Jeff Kravitz has represented Occupy Sac protestors in the past. Kravitz is running for the county board seat in District 3. Blenner, a local high school government teacher, is running in District 4.
“I’ll tell you what, the powers that be had better be worried because we’re coming, and we’re going to run a serious campaign, because people are fed up,” Kravitz said during a press conference the two candidates held on Wednesday.
The two bill themselves as the first “pro-Occupy” candidates in the region, and possibly the entire state. They’re running on a platform that they say will give a voice to the 99 percent.
“It has to get out of this idea that when governments spend money, they have to spend $200 million,” Kravitz said. “They can give grants to help small, local businesses develop.”
In a joint statement, the candidates say they won’t support cuts that hurt the needy or selling off property to fund a new downtown arena.
As for the fundraising, they promise not to take money from developers. or big business. So, is there really enough support to take the Occupy movement from the streets to the county board? Stay tuned.
The candidates are promising to hold several community forums in the coming months to see what the voters would like them to do, should they be elected.