Ralph Nader urged an appreciative audience to "break new ground" Sunday as he stumped for the Green Party's New York gubernatorial candidate.
The consumer activist and political gadfly spoke at a Unitarian church in Albany to praise Howie Hawkins and to help him raise money for his third-party bid. Nader also touted the Green Party candidacy of northern New York congressional candidate Matt Funiciello.
"You have a marvelous opportunity ... to break new ground and send a message all over the country," Nader told a crowd of more than 100 people.
Nader urged audience members to pledge $50 or more to Hawkins' campaign.
Hawkins is making his second run for governor as a Green. The Syracuse resident received enough votes in 2010 to secure the Green Party an automatic ballot spot.
Hawkins called himself the true progressive in the race and criticized the policies of Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who is heavily favored in his re-election bid. Rob Astorino is running on the Republican line.
Nader ran for president on the Green Party ticket in 1996 and 2000.