The Green Party's 2014 nominee for Attorney General of Connecticut is Attorney Stephen Fournier, a semi-retired lawyer in Hartford. Here's his AG Agenda
- Restrain unconstitutional authority
Our government spies on us, censors the news, interferes with our right to dissent, wages war illegally, tortures prisoners, and spends without limit or accountability, all in defiance of our laws. State attorneys general can and should act in concert to end such abuses of authority.
- Investigate demolition of World Trade Center
In the most brazen crime ever committed, on September 11, 2001, agents of government allowed two Manhattan skyscrapers to be demolished with thousands of people trapped inside. The official explanation for the collapse of these buildings is supported by no competent evidence and mocks the laws of nature. No government official has ever been charged with responsibility for this atrocity, in which the people of the state of Connecticut suffered grievous injury. It is the obligation of our attorney general to investigate the shocking events of that day and the cover-up that followed.
- Challenge oppressive federal mandates
Most federal mandates exist to satisfy influential constituents--typically, those that feed at the government trough--and not to advance the public interest. The attorney general must conduct a critical analysis of every burden imposed on the state by federal laws and challenge mandates that raise serious legal issues.
- Subject state contracts to critical scrutiny
There has been a bias in state government favoring the performance of government services by private contractors. Our attorney general should stand in opposition to this bias and should render an independent critique of every aspect of every such contract.
- Throw the book at polluters
The federal government has been quick to respond to polluting industry’s plea for relaxed standards. In an almost seamless transition, Democrats have continued most of the policies of the Republicans they replaced, bowing to polluters’ demands in more ways than voters can count. It’s left to the states and the courts to protect Americans from pollution, and the attorney general must be a potent force in bringing polluters to account.
- Expose and oust corrupt officials
Democrats and Republicans have apportioned graft and patronage so neatly that corrupt practice is mostly taken for granted in the public sector. The state attorney general should welcome complaints from government whistleblowers and people hurt by government corruption and pursue aggressively any and all crooked officials, regardless of party and regardless of office. .
- Advocate for the poor
The attorney general has been effective in protecting consumers and businesses from corrupt practices, but the office has been less involved in the protection of people at the bottom of the economic ladder. Poor people fall victim to predators every day, but they receive little help from government. Democrats and Republicans see no political advantage in advocacy on behalf of people who spend little and vote only sporadically. The office of the attorney general should be looking for ways to serve this population, whose voice is seldom heard in our civil courts.
Fournier, who closed his law practice in 2008 when the real estate market collapsed, is an outspoken writer and critic. His essays, circulated to email subscribers, appear online at www.currentinvective.com, and he has appeared from time to time on Hartford Public Access Television, discussing current events on a program entitled “Green Vision.” He is a self-taught computer programmer and has maintained a presence on the Internet since 1995 at www.stepfour.com.
Fournier is a lifelong Hartford resident. He is a graduate of Hartford Public High School, as are all three of his children. He is married to the former Ruth Tomasko, of Manchester. The couple met at the University of Connecticut in Storrs. They dote on their five grandchildren, and Fournier often remarks that his political involvement is motivated by his concern for their future.
In 1995, Fournier was elected to the Hartford Board of Education. He served a portion of a four-year term, resigning in protest over corruption on the part of some of his fellow board members. Soon after his resignation, that board was dissolved by the Connecticut General Assembly because of gross mismanagement.
Throughout his years as an attorney, and from the time of his discharge in 1970 from the U.S. Air Force, where he served as a foreign language specialist, Fournier has been active in the antiwar movement and in the movement for social justice. This involvement drew him eventually to the candidacy of Ralph Nader in 1996 and to the Green Party, just then organizing in Connecticut. He served two terms as state Green Party co-chair and was the party's 2008 nominee for U. S. House of Representatives in the First District and the party's 2010 candidate for attorney general.
Fournier sums up his candidacy as follows:
Admitted to the practice of law in 1978, Fournier has had diverse experience as an attorney. His first assignment was as Staff Attorney and Lecturer in Law in the University of Connecticut School of Law Criminal Clinic, where he supervised student attorneys in the representation of indigent defendants. He had been a student in the clinic and was invited by Professor Michael Sheldon to continue for a year as a member of the faculty.
"Racketeers and their henchman govern us now, openly and without apology. The two major political parties are complicit, facilitating the rackets by trashing the Bill of Rights, undermining the rule of law, and effectively repealing all checks on government power, including the power to wage war and the power to poison the earth. Most recently, our leaders greeted with complacent optimism the news that the West Antarctic ice sheet is in irreversible decline, guaranteeing catastrophic consequences for our grandchildren and their issue. |
"Our leaders have long since quit regulating the vast, supra-national networks that control public policy, resulting in rampant racial and ethnic discrimination, widespread abuse of workers, poor quality goods, mass export of jobs, declines in public health and personal quality of life, environmental pollution, a huge incarceration industry, the concentration of wealth in a few hands, and a failing economy. These problems can't be addressed until the people undertake the restoration of constitutional government. This candidacy--the candidate is a troublemaker and whistleblower--is an expression of urgency."
From criminal law he moved in 1979 to a position as Assistant Corporation Counsel for the City of Hartford, under Attorney Hubert Santos, Corporation Counsel. Most of his duties involved the representation of the Tax Collector in lien foreclosures, but he was assigned to a number of other civil matters and handled miscellaneous real estate transactions for the City, as well.
Fournier's assignment with the City lasted until early 1981, when he opened his sole practice, also taking on a regular free-lance legal editing assignment with Business and Legal Reports, Inc. (BLR), then of Madison, Connecticut. BLR publishes compliance aids for business managers, and Fournier was responsible for creating and maintaining a line of products offering compliance assistance to environmental and work safety managers. He also served as BLR's general counsel, drafting documents and handling real estate matters.
Aside from his legal editing duties, Fournier's sole practice was general at first, including criminal defense, domestic relations, real estate, probate, bankruptcy, collections, and personal injury. In 1985, Fournier left BLR to devote full time to his law practice. Over the next several years, his focus narrowed somewhat, so that, by 1988, the practice focused principally on residential real estate. In 1988, the local real estate market collapsed, and Fournier's practice slowed to a crawl.
In 1990, he returned to BLR full-time and disengaged from his private law practice, continuing to function as BLR's general counsel. This time, the assignment was to a line of compliance products for personnel managers, and Fournier developed and improved that line as a legal editor and, later, as team leader and managing editor. He also took up computer programming during this period and helped develop a line of electronic compliance products for BLR, some of which are still in use.
Fournier left BLR after the company moved from Madison to Old Saybrook in 1998, but he continued free-lancing as a writer and editor, generating copy for several legal and business publishers. He underwent open-heart surgery in late 2001, and, in 2002, as part of his recovery from the surgery, he and his wife opened a restaurant in downtown Hartford. The restaurant wasn't successful, but Fournier’s recovery from the surgery was, and Fournier closed the restaurant and resumed his real estate practice in 2004, devoting most of his efforts to refinancing transactions for various lenders. In 2008, having had enough of crooked bankers, Fournier closed his practice.
Steve is not accepting monetary contributions to his campaign, but volunteers are welcome to join him in the drive to restore the rule of law. Send name, address and phone no. to Fournier 2014, 74 Tremont Street, Hartford, CT 06105 or email stepfour at stepfour dot com.