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NY Governors Race

FILE - Green party candidate Howie Hawkins speaks during the 2010 New York State Gubernatorial debate held at Hoftstra University in Hempstead, N.Y. on Monday, Oct. 18, 2010. (AP Photo/Kathy Kmonicek)

Green Party candidate for governor Howie Hawkins isn't sure where potential Working Families Party candidate for governor Diane Ravitch stands on all of the issues, but believes she could contribute a lot to a debate on education in this year's gubernatorial race. 

Hawkins released a statement Wednesday after it was reported the Working Families Party has asked Ravitch, an education policy expert, to run for governor on its party line this year

According to the New York Daily News, Ravitch is interested, but the party hasn't made a final decision on whether they will run their own candidate or endorse Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo. 

If Ravitch does run, Hawkins welcomes the opportunity to debate key issues, including education.

"Diane Ravitch has brought the real facts and a commitment to quality public schools for all back into the debate about education reform... I don't know where Ravitch stands on other policies our Green campaign promotes, including public jobs for the unemployed, a $15 minimum wage, single-payer health care, a ban on fracking and progressive tax reform. Nor do I know if she supports our goal of building an independent left party of the working class majority that is free to act without the compromising entanglements of the major parties with their wealthy corporate funders," Hawkins said. 

"However, democracy is best served by a full and open discussion of the issues. Ms. Ravitch would be a wonderful addition to the debate on education along with the Green, Democratic and Republican candidates." 

Hawkins issued a call last week for a meeting between the Green and Working Families parties to discuss uniting against Cuomo in this year's election. He has also suggested that the Working Families Party nominate him to run on their ballot line. 

Hawkins' comments come three days before the Working Families Party holds their convention to nominate candidates for statewide office. The convention will be held Saturday in Albany.

A Siena College poll released in April found that an unnamed challenger from the left could siphon votes away from Cuomo. But if the Working Families Party and Greens field their own candidates, they would be battling for support among the same group of liberal voters. 

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