Feinstein may encounter Green challenge in'06
San Francisco activist Todd Chretien hopes to make Senate race a referendum on war in Iraq
Oakland Tribune article
FROM STAFF REPORTS
A co-author of San Francisco's successful ballot measure opposing military recruiters on public high schools and college campuses has announced he might run as a Green Party candidate against U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif.
Activist Todd Chretien, 36, of San Francisco has formed an exploratory committee and expects to announce a final decision in the next 10 days. In a news release, Chretien said he wants to make the election a referendum on the war in Iraq, forcing Feinstein to come to grips with polls showing a majority of California voters oppose the war.
"The Republican Party may be afraid to challenge Dianne Feinstein, but the Green Party and other progressives who represent millions of Californians who are opposed to the war in Iraq are not," he said.
Los Angeles businessman Bill Mundell last week announced he will not seek the Republican nomination for the 2006 U.S. Senate race, leaving the GOP without any clear contenders.
Feinstein was among Senate Democrats who voted to authorize the war, but recently she has said she regrets her decision and has joined other lawmakers in pushing for completion of a stalled investigation into the use of prewar intelligence. Many on the left have faulted Feinstein for not working to bring the troops home.
Anti-war and human-rights activist Medea Benjamin challenged Feinstein on the Green ticket in 2000, earning 3.1 percent of the vote; Chretien was her campaign's statewide student coordinator. 2000 Republican candidate Tom Campbell got 36.6 percent, while Feinstein won with 55.9 percent.