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      Green Party runs voter registration drive in Syracuse

      On National Voter Registration day, the Green Party held the largest registration event in Syracuse. SU student Jack Bender was one of almost two dozen who took registration paperwork from a small group of Green Party volunteers on Marshall Street.

      "It helps to have people out there and active - political engagement is very important," said Bender.

      The Green Party sees opportunity in what many consider a quiet election year. Green candidate Howie Hawkins fell less than a hundred votes short of winning a common council seat four years ago. He's running for a district seat against incumbent Democrat Khalid Bey. Green Party secretary Ursula Rozum says that while fewer Democrats and Republicans are campaigning - the Greens are reaching out.

      "The Republicans won't even run a candidate for mayor because they don't want to face the tough challenges our city is facing and the greens have candidates for mayor, school board and city council," said Rozum.

      Syracuse law student Jacob Jones was grateful for the Green Party's help in registering to vote and said he wanted to be an active part of the process, not a spectator.

      "If I don't vote - how can I argue one way or the other?" said Jones.

      While the Green Party hopes that the people they registered on Tuesday will support their candidates, they are also happy to take the lead in helping new voters from any party.

      "Whenever we engage somebody, that's a plus. Whatever their views are," said Onondaga County Green Party Chairman Barry Lentz.

      The Green Party hopes to have several more voter registration drives before the general election on November 5th.