John Rensenbrink, Maine political scientist and US Green Party co-founder, dies at 93 – Boston News, Weather, Sports

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — John Rensenbrink, a Maine political scientist and conservationist who co-founded the U.S. Green Party, has died. He was 93 years old.

Rensenbrink, from Topsham, died in hospice, surrounded by his family, the national Green Party said. An obituary in the Bangor Daily News stated that Rensenbrink died of an illness on July 30.

Rensenbrink helped convene the first Green Party meeting in the United States, which took place in Maine in 1984, the national party said in a statement. He also helped form the Maine Green Party, which was the first statewide Green Party and is now known as the Maine Green Party Independent, its members said.

Rensenbrink taught political philosophy and history at Bowdoin College in Maine for decades and helped found the new political party out of frustration with the Democratic Party and a desire to crusade for peace and the environment.

Past and present members of the Green Party remembered him as a tireless campaigner and a pivotal figure in the development of the Green organisation.

“John Rensenbrink for decades embodied the best of American progressive politics by connecting thought with action and motivating greens from the local to the national and international levels,” Ralph Nader said in a statement. , advocate of government reform, who ran twice for the presidency. .

Rensenbrink was born in Pease, Minnesota, into a family of dairy farmers. He earned a doctorate from the University of Chicago and settled in Maine in the 1960s.

He ran for the United States Senate in 1996, garnering about 4% of the vote in an election won by Republican Senator Susan Collins, who continues to serve today. He also ran political campaigns and was elected as the first co-chair of the Maine Green Party, the state party said in a statement.

“Not only did he revolutionize third-party politics in America, but he also showed us how to recontextualize our views about ourselves outside the conventional structures of politics and economics,” said Fred McCann, co-chair of the Maine Green Independent Party. today.

Rensenbrink’s obituary states that there will be a memorial gathering in his honor in September.

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