Dr. Jill Stein, the woman who took the green out of the Green Party in 2002, wants another shot at the presidency of the United States.
From her press release yesterday:
Dr. Jill Stein Announces Formation of Exploratory Committee For 2016 Presidential Bid Declaring “It’s Time For A New Society, A New Economy, A New Way Forward.”
At a Press Conference this morning, Dr. Jill Stein told the assembled media, guests, and a live TV audience tuning into C-Span that she is “testing the waters” and forming an exploratory committee to seek the Green Party nomination for President of the United States. More information about the exploratory committee can be found at Jill2016.com.
The declaration came just hours after Dr. Stein’s exclusive interview with ABC News made a splash on the Yahoo News homepage. (Watch the full ABC News video here.)
And here she is yesterday at the National Press Club.
Stein, a sort of five-and-dime Ralph Nader, has been around third-party politics for over a decade. Most memorably in Massachusetts, she was one of the gubernatorial candidates in the 2002 Big Love election, which featured Mitt Romney versus Stein, Democrat Shannon O’Brien, Libertarian Carla Howell, and Independent Barbara Johnson, whose most compelling recommendation for public office was her chain-smoking.
Stein could have been a real player in that race if she had garnered Clean Elections public funding (which Warren Tolman received in the Democratic primary). But as Seth Gitell noted in Jewish World Review at the time:
[T]he Green Party in Massachusetts bungled its application for Clean Elections funding by failing to garner the mandatory 6000 $5 to $100 contributions . . . (Stein attributes the Clean Elections-funding snafu to “technicalities which we thought were unjust.” Under the Clean Elections Law, candidates must not only take in contributions, but must also collect detail-intensive cards along with each donation. Stein claims local town halls arbitrarily rejected the paperwork or, in some cases, wrongly applied the same strict rules as those guiding nominating-petition signatures.)
Whatever. The results (via uselectionatlas.org):
And that was Stein’s best effort. (In the 2010 Massachusetts gubernatorial race, she got all of 1%.)
As for her 2012 presidential stroll, it’s best described by Slate’s David Weigel:
The Pathetic Failure of Green Party Candidate Jill Stein
For the first time since 1992—seriously, it had been that long!—Ralph Nader opted out of the presidential campaign. The anti-Obama left-wing vote would be sought by Jill Stein, a sometime Green Party candidate in Massachusetts, who got some free press attention for 1) having previously run against Mitt Romney and 2) getting arrested when protesting her noninclusion in debates. Democrats didn’t worry about her too much, but she polled as high as 2 percent in some surveys, and it wasn’t hard to find the occasional Salon or TruthOut jeremiad demanding that the left punish Obama for his drone warfare ways.
How’d Stein do? Terribly! There’s a hefty vote left to count in the West and in provisional ballots in states where Republicans played Parcheesi with polling places, but right now, Stein’s won fewer than 400,000 votes nationwide. That’s barely more than one-third as much as Gary Johnson, the former governor of New Mexico who left the GOP in a huff and ran an anti-war, pro-drug legalization Libertarian campaign.
Even worse: “In Massachusetts, Stein ran fourth, with fewer than 20,000 votes, even though every Democrat in the state realized he could cast a spoiler vote if he wanted to.”
So . . . memo to Dr. Jill Stein:
Please, put us out of your misery.