Community organizer and feminist activist Judy Smith describes the founding of the Missoula New Party in the early 1990s. Smith asserts that the novelty of the New Party was in its focus on electoral politics rather than policy politics, the latter being the primary sphere for progressive expression at the time. She describes the benefits—volunteers, organization—that a New Party candidate received compared to candidates from other parties. Smith talks about the importance of selecting electable candidates and mentions Jim McGrath and the Living Wage campaign. Smith reflects on the dissolution of the New Party in 2001 and points to two causes: the first, a slacking enthusiasm for electoral politics compounded by an inability to recruit new members; the second, a more organized political opposition. She discusses the social aspect of the party and the lasting relationships that came from it.
New Party, United States; New Party, Missoula, Montana; Political parties, Montana; Political parties, United States; Living Wage Campaign (1990s), Montana; Living Wage Campaign (1990s), United States
Missoula New Party Oral History Project, OH 400, Archives and Special Collections, Mansfield Library, University of Montana-Missoula
University of Montana-Missoula. Mansfield Library
Copyright to this collection is held by the interview participants and by the Maureen and Mike Mansfield Library, University of Montana-Missoula. Permission may be required for use. For further information please contact Archives and Special Collections: (406) 243-2053 / email@example.com
Oral History Number
1 sound cassette (01:00:00 min.) analog + 1 transcript (19 p.: 28 cm.)
Smith, Judy, "Judy Smith Interview, April 30, 2006" (2006). Missoula New Party Oral History Project. 3.