Thursday, February 4th I had the privilege of having a phone interview with Green Party Presidential Candidate Dr. Jill Stein. After going to Harvard University and getting her doctorate at Harvard Medical School, Dr. Stein became a physician in the Boston area. It was after practicing clinical medicine that Dr. Stein became interested in politics. She believed that there was a need for change not only in healthcare but the entire medical industry. After this change in career direction, Dr. Stein became an activist working toward reforming the American healthcare system.
What got you interested in politics?
Dr. Stein: “I came into politics very late in the game. I didn’t really get involved until I had kids. Once I had kids I became an activist, because I was really concerned about the health epidemic that was really being inflicted on young people….I spent decades spinning my wheels trying to make changes and I realized I had to stop practicing clinical medicine and start practicing political medicine.”
How do you propose to make the Green New Deal happen?
“We have the ingenuity and the vision and the true grit to get this done and that means 100% renewable energy by 2030. Solar energy system and cleaning our food system which we need, a healthy sustainable local food system. We need to turn the White House into a Greenhouse!”
The millennial vote is going to play a big role in the upcoming elections so how do you plan to gain more of their vote?”
“By getting the word out that millennials can actually come out to cancel their debt. We’re the only campaign that wants to cancel student debt. And, as you know, the vast majority of young people that go to college come out with a huge debt and that is just outrageous for many people. It’s up there into the hundreds of thousands and . . . you shouldn’t have to hostage your future for economic security. This is something that we should be providing for free. Going forward we have been clear about that as a campaign as of four years ago and other campaigns have taken up that tune as well. And that’s really wonderful but we are really the only campaign that is leading the charge to cancel student debt.”
Your party affiliation is with the Green Party and you have also allied yourself with Kashma Sawant who is a socialist candidate. There are definitely some shared interests between you both but I was wondering what are the differences?
“The kinds of socialist and economic justice in the US are relatively small, and all kind of under the Green Party’s wing. We have people running for offices in New York. We had a Green Party member running for governor, and a member of one of the Socialist Party.
Living wages for a national standard with a minimum wage being at least $15 an hour working as . . . we come together around that form of justice. We come together around climate justice and racial justice and ending police brutality and justice for students. There is a lot to be learned about socialists. They really do have an amazing sense of history… But the difference between the two, there really isn’t much.”
Dr. Stein is a pioneer for economic justice, equality, and healthcare. Now that you’ve gotten to know her, do you want to “Turn the White House into a Greenhouse?”