Jill Stein on Principles & Values

Green Party presidential nominee; Former Challenger for MA Governor


Greens overcame ballot laws designed by Democrats and GOP

A voter revolt is brewing in America. People are fed up, and they should be. The super rich are destroying our economy, sending our jobs overseas and making our planet uninhabitable. But instead of offering real solutions, the two-party system has produced the two most disliked and distrusted candidates in history. An incredible 57% of Americans polled recently by Gallup say the Democratic and Republican parties have failed and we need a new major party. In short, the American people are ready for real competition to the two-party system.

But while the two-party system may be deeply unpopular, it's also deeply entrenched. Greens and Libertarians have both spent tremendous resources to overcome laws designed by Democrats and Republicans to keep competition off the ballot. Yet despite this milestone, the mainstream media have given us less than 1% of the coverage they've given Trump & Clinton. Of the relatively tiny amount of coverage we get, most is either openly hostile or subtly negative

Source: Stein OpEd, Chicago Tribune: Third 2016 Presidential Debate , Oct 20, 2016

Majority of Americans want a four-party debate

The two-party establishment's strongest line of defense is the presidential debates, controlled by a private corporation run by Democratic and Republican party elites. A landslide 76% of Americans wanted a four-party debate, according to a September USA Today poll. Yet the Commission on Presidential Debates insists that candidates can only participate if they're polling 15% nationally--a near impossible task when your media coverage is 1% of that of the establishment parties. Supposedly this is to keep out "non-viable" candidates. It certainly does help prevent other parties from becoming viable in the eyes of the public.

What would our history look like if another challenger to the two-party system, Abraham Lincoln, had been locked out of debates by the dominant parties of his time, the Democrats and the Whigs? The Republican Party was an upstart in a time of discontent. Today our country is once again mired in discontent.

Source: Stein OpEd, Chicago Tribune: Third 2016 Presidential Debate , Oct 20, 2016

In private, Hillary is for wealthy, but not in public

Q: WikiLeaks released excerpts of Secretary Clinton's paid speeches, which she had refused to release, and in one line you, Secretary Clinton, purportedly say, "You need both a public and private position on certain issues." Why is that acceptable?

Hillary Clinton: It was a master class watching President Lincoln get the Congress to approve the 13th Amendment. President Lincoln was trying to convince some people, he used some arguments; convincing other people, he used other arguments.

Jill Stein: Hillary's public statement is that she is the friend to women and children, but, in fact, her actual track record is to dismantle Aid to Families with Dependent Children, to have supported NAFTA and the offshoring of our jobs, to support the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

Source: Democracy Now expanded Second 2016 Presidential Debate , Oct 10, 2016

Outreach to Bernie Sanders voters

In this election cycle, the mainstream nominees have achieved historically poor favorability ratings from voters nationwide. Stein has seized on this point and focused her message on disaffected progressive voters in particular, reserving her sharpest critiques for Clinton. The Green Party nominee has said she hopes to reignite and build upon the "political revolution" of Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders.

Despite her outreach to Sanders' supporters, Stein has been largely ignored--even after years' worth of effort--by Sanders himself. With that in mind, Stein and Baraka spent Wednesday evening hoping to win over a national audience.

Source: Eli Watkins, CNN, joint interview of Stein and Baraka , Aug 17, 2016

Hillary Clinton is untrustworthy, but "too big to jail"

Stein made clear, as she has her entire campaign, that she believes Clinton is not an acceptable choice for president. Stein hit her from the left, but she also made the case against Clinton on matters of trust.

She implied Clinton was so well-connected as to be above the law. With regard to the former secretary of state's email controversy, Stein called Clinton "too big to jail."

Compounding her concerns with Clinton's character and alleged impropriety, Stein hit Clinton's record on foreign policy. "I do have serious questions about Hillary's judgment, her safeguarding of national security information and above all, her trustworthiness in the job where she will have her finger on the button," Stein said.

Source: Eli Watkins, CNN, joint interview of Stein and Baraka , Aug 17, 2016

Hillary supports Wall Street, war and the Walmart economy

I join millions of Americans who see Hillary Clinton's campaign as the opposite of what they and Bernie Sanders have fought for. Despite her penchant for flip flopping rhetoric, Hillary Clinton has spent decades consistently serving the causes of Wall Street, war and the Walmart economy.

The policies she fought for--along with her husband and political partner, Bill Clinton--have been foundations of the economic disaster most Americans are still struggling with: the abuses of deregulated Wall Street, rigged corporate trade agreements, racist mass incarceration, and the destruction of the social safety net for poor women and children. The consistent efforts of the Democratic Party to minimize, sideline, and sabotage the Sanders campaign are a wake up call that we can't have a revolutionary campaign inside a counter-revolutionary party. I call on the tens of millions inspired by Bernie Sanders' call for political revolution.

Source: CommonDreams.org column by Jill Stein , Jul 12, 2016

OpEd: mainstream media ignores Greens unless they hurt Dems

The mainstream media hangs on every word uttered by Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, but ignores everything said by Jill Stein and Gary Johnson. The TV debates, the newspapers, and the pundits--they all care only about the Democrats and the Republicans, and never the Greens or the Libertarians.

The only "news" that matters to the mainstream media is how their presence in the race affects Hillary vs. Trump--in other words, could Dr. Stein get enough votes in Massachusetts to hurt Hillary, or could Gov. Johnson do the same to Trump in New Mexico?

If Jill Stein were running as a Democrat, she would get as much coverage as Sen. Bernie Sanders (D, VT) got--googling Jill Stein in late May 2016 brings up fewer than 39,000 results, whereas googling Bernie Sanders brings up 39 million results. In other words, by switching from Independent to Democrat, Sanders increased his coverage by more than 1,000-fold.

Source: Trump/Clinton/Stein/Johnson On The Issues, by Jesse Gordon , May 15, 2016

Democrats' superdelegates kill grassroots candidates

Q: Given all the excitement that Sanders has generated, many people are hoping it might be possible to reform the Democrats and turn them into a truly left-wing party. How do you respond?

STEIN: There has been a long and valiant effort for many decades to reform the Democratic Party. But the party has a built-in kill switch that it created in 1972 after George McGovern won the primaries as a peace candidate. They changed the internal party system to insure that grassroots candidates would never be elected again. This included creating the superdelegates in order to empower the party insiders to call the shots. The superdelegates are about 30% of the total needed to win the nomination, so it's a very powerful firewall. Likewise with the Super Tuesday primaries. So it's a doomed struggle, right from the outset, to try to reform the party.

Source: SocialistWorker.org interview of 2016 presidential hopefuls , May 9, 2016

We are in state of crisis--for economy, ecology & democracy

From the viewpoint of everyday Americans, the State of our Union, in point of fact, is not strong. In reality, we are in a state of historic crisis--for our economy, ecology, democracy & security.

Thankfully, these crises are still eminently solvable. With a majority of Americans disapproving of both establishment parties, there is unprecedented momentum for a new way forward, based on principles of democracy, justice and peace, towards an America and a world that works for all of us.

Source: Green Party response to 2016 State of the Union speech , Jan 12, 2016

Moral foundation for society good; religious basis bad

OnTheIssues: How should religion affect public policy choices?

Stein: We don't live in a religious country--in the sense of having no national religion, and instead the separation of church & state--so faith should not be a public issue. But, yes, it tends to be something that people are interested in. I'm not comfortable with any narrow religious or secular view of the world. Religious societies where religion is enshrined in government are extremely problematic. I respect every faith and look for a moral and ethical foundation of how society works--but that is independent of faith or whether one has a religion at all. And that needs to be reflected in our government. Failing to separate church and state is a bad prescription.

Source: Phone interview on 2016 presidential race by OnTheIssues.org , Jul 6, 2015

Raised Jewish; married to a Protestant atheist

OnTheIssues: What is your religious background?

Stein: I was brought up in a reform Jewish family--where the key [aspects of faith] are community and social responsibility--I did not come away with a sense of "Jewish right & wrong" that is different from "right & wrong" period. My husband was brought up Protestant but is a practicing atheist--I bring that perspective of religious neutrality--we need to be a diverse society--that's just a condition of the modern world.

Source: Phone interview on 2016 presidential race by OnTheIssues.org , Jul 6, 2015

Arrested for attempt to participate in presidential debate

Q: You didn't get into the debates last time. In fact, instead of getting into the debates, you got into jail.

STEIN: Into a dark site, actually. Handcuffed to a metal chair for eight hours, surrounded by 16 police and Secret Service. I mean, this is how afraid they are that word gets out that people have a choice.

Q: Tell the story, how you got there.

STEIN: So, my running mate and I were at the debate because we were on the ballot for over 85% of voters. And if the League of Women Voters were still in charge of the commission on presidential debates, if it were truly a public interest institution--which the public thinks it is, but which it's actually not--it's now run by the Democratic and Republican parties--we would have been in the debate. And we should have been in the debate. Gary Johnson should have been in the debate as a libertarian. We were arrested trying to get in, and we were handcuffed and taken by police & Secret Service to a dark site. The facility itself was a secret.

Source: TRNN: The Real News Network 2015 interview of Jill Stein , Feb 16, 2015

Greens are only non-corporate party: we win by being heard

Q: [In 2012] you told me, "I'm running to win." I don't think you thought you could win, but instead you thought kind of, "if I'm running, I'd better say I can win." Now you're framing it differently

STEIN: I find the term "win" is very confusing. To my mind it is a win to--

Q: I mean get enough votes to become the president.

STEIN: Yes, right. But the real win is about bringing that voice to the social movements that are vibrant and alive and growing and which deserve to be front and center in the political dialog and need a national voice.

Q: And why do you think they would want the Green Party to be their voice?

STEIN: Well, it just so happens that the Green Party is the one non-corporate national electoral party that has a fighting chance, because we have a base which is national, we can get on the ballot in enough states that we can contest to be in the debates, we can contest for coverage. We are the one infrastructure that's available nationally.

Source: TRNN: The Real News Network 2015 interview of Jill Stein , Feb 16, 2015

Grew up in a middle-class, suburban, apolitical family

Q: You grew up in Chicago?

STEIN: That's right. I grew up in the suburbs north of Chicago.

Q: And you started off early with a science bent?

STEIN: Yes, definitely. I loved to go collecting butterflies with my father in suburban Highland Park. Growing up as a kid, I had a family that was very securely middle-class in the 1950s, growing up with all the privileges of being white.

Q: Is that middle class that they were professionals?

STEIN: My father was a professional, and my mother was able to stay home and raise the kids. He was a small business attorney.

Q: Corporate law, that kind of stuff?

STEIN: Yes, exactly, that's right. And I grew up in a household that was largely apolitical but very sympathetic and interested in the civil rights movement. I became very involved in the antiwar movement in high school and sort of had that combat in my household. They weren't quite ready to go there.

Source: TRNN: The Real News Network 2015 interview of Jill Stein , Feb 15, 2015

Petition to open up debates to more than two candidates

The biggest misperception in this race is that there are only two candidates in this race and that there's only one choice, which is for a corporate- and Wall Street-sponsored future. In fact, there are many other candidates. I urge people to go to my website, jillstein.org, and sign a petition there to open up the debates so that everyone can actually hear that they have real choices. And my campaign is providing that choice for a Green New Deal.
Source: Democracy Now! Expanded Second Obama-Romney 2012 debate , Oct 18, 2012

At breaking point for people, planet, economy, & democracy

We clearly are in a crisis now. People are losing their jobs, their homes, decent wages, affordable health care and higher education. Our civil liberties are under attack in the climate is in meltdown. Yet, the wealthy few are making out better than ever, making out like bandits. Richer than ever. While the political establishment that got us into this mess to start with actually is making it worse.

Both Democrats and Republicans are making it worse: imposing austerity on the everyday people of this country while they continue to squander trillions on wars for oil, Wall Street bailouts and tax breaks for the wealthy.

The American people are at the breaking point, and we can use this election to turn that breaking point into a tipping point, to take back our democracy and the peaceful, just, green future we deserve. We're at the breaking point not only for people, but the planet, for the economy, and for our democracy. So, it's very important that we have a real change in course.

Source: Democracy Now! Expanded First Obama-Romney 2012 debate , Oct 4, 2012

Side-by-side issue comparison to Barack Obama

Jill Stein will be on the ballot as a presidential candidate in 40+ states in November. She is the presidential nominee of the Green Party, an international organization which runs candidates in 90 countries, including 133 elected officials in the US. Yet Dr. Stein will be excluded from the presidential debates, under the rules determined by the Commission on Presidential Debates, a "bipartisan" organization run by the Democrats and the Republicans (but with no Green representation). Our OnTheIssues book provides the equal coverage that the debates will not provide, including a direct comparison of Obama vs. Stein on these issues:
Source: Paperback: Obama-Romney-Stein-Johnson On The Issues , Aug 11, 2012

Tea Party hijacked by funding from major corporations

She is relying on pulling in votes from people fed up with their party, or with how the country has been run for decades. "In this race, we are determined to establish another voice," said Stein, "at the very least we establish a political alternative; currently there is none." She believes the Green Party and the Tea Party have a lot of similarities; but according to Stein, the Tea Party has been hijacked by funding from major corporations.
Source: Jason Aubry on ABC 57 News, "Green talks jobs" , Mar 5, 2012

Occupy Movement: coming of age of a younger generation

Q. Is your campaign trying to tap into the Occupy movement?

A. Occupy is very much a part of a broader move for democracy and economic and social justice. That is alive and well around the world. Just look at what is going on in Wisconsin which is directly linked to Occupy. It doesn't have the name of Occupy, but they slept for three weeks in the statehouse. If that's not Occupy, what is? The Occupy movement, beneath the surface, represents a political coming of age of a younger generation who have been on the receiving end of a generally exploitative economy. One of those groups to exploit has been young people. They have been exploited in education. The unemployment crisis hits them the hardest. They are bearing the burden for the climate disruptions that are coming down the pike.

Source: Michael Shear, New York Times, "5 Questions" , Feb 14, 2012

Dems & GOP are both sinking ships; one just sinks faster

Q. Is there a difference between the Democratic and Republican Parties?

A. You might look at one party as a rapidly sinking ship and say we're going to vote for the other guy because the ship's not going down so fast. We don't like him but he's not sinking the ship so fast. But the real question is, if both of those ships are heading for the bottom of the ocean, do you want to be on either of them? No. There's no question about where those ships are heading if you are looking at the economy.

Source: Michael Shear, New York Times, "5 Questions" , Feb 14, 2012

Ran as Green Party nominee for MA governor in 2002 & 2010

Q: What was your motive for running for president as a member of the Green Party?

A: I wanted to help the Green Party find someone who could run and there weren't a lot of campaigns that could ramp up, and having run for state office multiple times...

Q: In Massachusetts?

A: I ran for governor in 2010; I also ran for governor in 2002, and I also ran for secretary of state in 2006. Everyone is upset out there. People are really upset and we have no politics to attach it to.

Q: Electoral politics?

A: Exactly. There is not a political vehicle for this and it was going to be the Greens or nobody because Nader, for a variety of reasons, is not going to run, and if you're not Nader, it takes a political party. Nader is just about the only person who can run a non-corporate campaign without having an expensive electoral organization. It's impressive that the Greens have survived when the Progressive Party and the Socialist Party as electoral organizations have all folded.

Source: Interview with Steve Horn of Truthout.org , Jan 29, 2012

Silence is not an effective political strategy

Q: What about the Bush to Obama transition?

A: After Nader, I think Greens feel so vindicated right now. We've had this experience over the past 8 years where we've been told to silence ourselves, muzzle yourselves, shut up, hold your nose, vote for the "lesser evil." Now people really have the evidence that silence is not an effective political strategy, and what we do if we silence the public interest, is that we silence ourselves and then we do not have a democracy. Witness what just happened with the Defense Authorization bill. We cannot go there and we need to do something. It just doesn't pass the "laugh test" anymore, and silence just is not working, nor is the politics of fear. The politics of fear has brought us everything we are afraid of, including the endless wars, the collapsing economy--all the rest. Two ships are going down--Democrats and Republicans are both going down. Historically, we've said the Republican ship is going faster. I think that's debatable right now.

Source: Interview with Steve Horn of Truthout.org , Jan 29, 2012

Dems & GOP blame each other while both support establishment

We're here to talk about the actual state of our nation, and how we can reclaim the promise of our democracy and the peaceful, just green future we deserve. We have heard President Obama deliver his State of the Union Address. And we heard the Republican response. Each claims to have the answer, and that the other was an obstacle to progress.

But the truth is both sides--despite the rhetoric--are responsible for the harsh policies driving our economy and our democracy into deep crisis. Simply put, they place the interests of Wall Street ahead of the needs of everyday people and the long term welfare of our nation.

[I want] to talk about the major problems that are not being solved by the political establishment. And focus on key game-changing solutions that have been kept off the table for too long.

Source: Green Party 2012 People's State of the Union speech , Jan 25, 2012

Green New Deal: emergency 4-part anti-recession program

The political establishment is telling us there's little we can do to change our direction. I don't believe it and I suspect you don't either. It is time to break free from the old economy, and the old politics. It's time for a Green New Deal for America.

The Green New Deal is an emergency four part program of specific solutions for moving America quickly out of crisis into the secure green future.

  1. We will guarantee the economic rights of all Americans, beginning with the right to a job at a living wage for every American willing and able to work.
  2. We will transition to a sustainable, green economy for the 21st century, by adopting green technologies and sustainable production.
  3. We will reboot and reprogram the financial sector so that it serves everyday people and our communities, and not the other way around.
  4. We will protect these gains by expanding and strengthening our democracy so that our government and our economy finally serve We the People.
Source: Green Party 2012 People's State of the Union speech , Jan 25, 2012

Join with Occupy movement to throw off rule by the 1%

Q: You cited that the American Revolution "threw off rule by the 1%"--that uses the language of the Occupy Wall Street movement. Are you working with them?

A: The chemistry between our campaign and the Occupy movement is a fruitful dialog. They came from a place that we completely agree with. American politics is predatory; we agree with them 100% on that issue. They largely aren't aware of alternative politics.

Q: Do you see an electoral future for the Occupy movement like the Tea Party took up?

A: As I've gone around and introduced myself, we've been welcomed with open arms and established a very good relationship with each of the Occupy sites we visited. As they increasingly are forced out of public spaces and have to use other tools, they are indeed looking more closely at electoral politics. I've been very gratified to see them on several occasions taking a stand on disavowing any interest in the corporate-sponsored Democratic and Republican Parties.

Source: 2011 AmericansElect interview questionnaire with Jill Stein , Dec 21, 2011

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