Jill Stein felt compelled to put aside her career as a doctor of internal medicine and run for President in 2012 because she felt neither of the major party candidates was speaking to the issues she feels are most important, specifically global warming and issues surrounding the environment.
Stein first entered the political arena when she ran for Governor of Massachusetts in 2002. She was also a candidate for that office in 2010 before accepting the Green Party’s nomination for President in 2012.
Stein built her 2012 campaign on two main issues. The first was her advocacy for the environment. Taking a page from the Franklin Roosevelt playbook, Stein called for a “Green New Deal” that would see investments in green energy and green jobs to not only address global climate change but to put Americans to work as well. Stein rejects the arguments that environmental regulations and conversions to green energy somehow destroy jobs and harm the economy. For Stein, focusing on the environment and building a sustainable infrastructure is the best was to jump start the economy going forward.
Stein is also an activist for a strong middle class. Throughout the 2012 campaign, she spoke out against the bailout of Fannie Mae, arguing that the entity continued to go after average people and make them pay for the mistakes for which the firm was being bailed out for. Stein is not afraid to risk jail time for what she believes in, as evidenced by her twin arrests in 2012. The first arrest came while protesting against Fannie Mae in Philadelphia and the second came as she attempted to take part in a Presidential debate in October 2012.
Stein’s tenacity is much needed in the American system that rewards the two major parties and penalizes candidates from independent parties. Stein was on the ballot in 85% of the country in 2012, yet received just 7% of the vote against President Obama, Mitt Romney and Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson.
Dr. Jill Stein is set to receive the Green Party presidential nomination at the convention in early August 2016.