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Laura Wells Arrested at San Rafael Debate!

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The big Whitman-Brown California gubernatorial debate at Dominican College in San Rafael already has plenty of drama going -- protesters from the California Nurses Association and other groups here in force. And Laura Wells, the Green Party candidate for governor, was arrested just minutes ago and put into a patrol car.

Marnie Glickman, the spokeswoman for Wells, said that the two had tickets to the debate and were entering Angelico Hall, when they were pulled aside by authorities. She said that they were told that they could not enter because of her status as a gubernatorial candidate.

Comrade Garofoli notes that "of course, this being the Bay Area, this isn't the first time that a Green Party candidate got arrested outside a major office debate. In 2000, the Green nominee for U.S. Senate — soon-to-be Code Pink co-founder Medea Benjamin — was arrested outside the studios of KRON-TV where Republican Tom Campbell and Democrat Dianne Feinstein were debating."

We're trying to get comment from Dominican officials, and we'll update.

Meantime, stay tuned here for regular debate updates and coverage.

Here's video of Glickman speaking to our own's Shaky Hand Productions moments after the event:

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Jerry Brown - Meg Whitman debate: Green Party gubernatorial candidate arrested outside debate site
October 12, 2010 | 5:43 pm

As Meg Whitman and Jerry Brown prepare for their final gubernatorial debate, the Green Party candidate for governor, Laura Wells, has been arrested outside the debate site.

Wells was protesting her exclusion from Tuesday's debate, according to a spokeswoman.

“Laura Wells got arrested to help put the unemployed back to work, and to save the planet from climate change,” said Marnie Glickman, co-chair of the Green Party of Marin County. “Wells stood up for the people whom Democrats and Republicans have forsaken: the unemployed, workers, children, and people whose homes have been foreclosed.”

-- Anthony York in San Rafael, Calif.

Photo: David Gesinger, left, and Janet Kobren wear masks over their mouths in protest over the omission of Green Party candidate Laura Wells. Credit: Rich Pedroncelli / Associated Press
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October 12, 2010
Green Party's Laura Wells arrested outside Dominican debate

California Govenor Debate.JPGGreen Party gubernatorial candidate Laura Wells was detained by police at Dominican University after a spokeswoman said she tried to get into tonight's debate.

As Wells was put into a San Rafael Police Department squad car outside the auditorium, Green Party spokeswoman Marnie Glickman said the arrest was "anti-Democratic." Glickman said she and Wells both had tickets to the debate.

Wells was taken up the street to a mobile command center, where police referred questions to headquarters. A spokeswoman was expected to address reporters later this evening.

PHOTO CAPTION: Janet Kobren, of Oakland wears a mask over her mouth in a protest over the omission of Green Party candidate Laura Wells from the third gubernatorial debate at Dominican University in San Rafael, on Tuesday, Oct. 12, 2010. Democrat Jerry Brown will face off against Republican Meg Whitman in their third and final debate. (AP Photo/ Rich Pedroncelli)
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By Luke Thomas
October 12, 2010

Green Party candidate for California governor, Laura Wells, was arrested this evening and prevented from attending the final debate between gubernatorial hopefuls Meg Whitman and Jerry Brown.

Wells, who possessed a valid ticket for the debate held at Dominican University in San Rafael, was protesting her exclusion from the debate. She was told she could not attend the debate because she is a Green Party candidate, according to Wells spokesperson Marnie Glickman.

“Republicans and Democrats will go to any lengths, even arresting candidates, to keep the truth from California voters,” Wells said following her release. “There are solutions, but voters aren’t being allowed to here from independent candidates. Meg and Jerry will spend tens of millions of dollars in advertising but still won’t address the problems plaguing us. The debate is a fraud. Limiting it to Whitman and Brown is not just anti-green, it is anti-democratic and anti-republican.”

Wells isn’t the first third-party candidate to be excluded from election debates. Independent presidential candidate Ralph Nader and his running mate, Matt Gonzalez, were excluded from the 2008 presidential debates.

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Jimmy Fishbob Geraghty's Photos - The Great Un-Debate - Laura Wells, Green Party Candidate Excluded
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Jimmy Fishbob Geraghty's Photos - The Great Un-Debate - Laura Wells, Green Party Candidate Excluded
by tangofred
What a disgrace to this political system that a candidate with the personal dignity, intelligence, and integrity of Laura Wells is treated as an arrestable criminal, for no wrongdoing whatsoever. Laura is a duly registered candidate of a duly registered political party, with an event ticket in hand, who should have been treated with courtesy, not arrest. How cowardly the status quo duopoly has become to resort to such vulgar, thuggish tactics to contain political discourse within the stunted safety zone of their conventional ideologies. What a teetering house of moldering cards Whitman and Brown want us to live in. Laura Wells tried to offer something besides the same degenerate bipartisan claptrap, and ended up being treated as a criminal. When integrity of her sort is being criminalized, god knows what's in store for the rest of us with Whitman or Brown in office.
by Stewart A. Alexander
This is the present generation in California politics. This was only to make certain that the voice of working Californians were silienced. This debate was only open to big business and Wall Street.

Stewart Alexander 2012
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