The Green Party in Arlington, Virginia has two candidates up this year: John Reeder for Arlington County Board and Josh Ruebner for House of Delegates in the 47th district. In addition to campaigning, both candidates are part of a lawsuit to stop expansion of the I-66 highway in Arlington, as the Sun Gazette reports.
John Reeder ran for Arlington County Board in 2008 and earned 23% of the vote. As Reeder’s website puts it, “Despite being outspent nearly 10 to 1, his campaign resonated with Arlington voters tired of one-party rule, over development, and the ruling party’s neglect of Arlington environment and social safety net.”
Josh Ruebner is the Virginia Greens’ only state-level candidate this year. The Arlington Connection covered Ruebner’s positions at a candidate forum:
THE GREEN CANDIDATE is Josh Ruebner, the only Green Party candidate in Virginia this year at the state level. A former Democrat who feels that the two-party system addresses issues from a narrow bandwidth that lead to what he calls “piecemeal reform efforts,” Ruebner says that corporate money is too influential in Virginia politics. He said that if elected his top priority will be to ban corporations from being able to donate money to candidates in Virginia.
“Dominion Virginia gives money to almost every single politician in Richmond,” said Ruebner. “This skews our state’s energy policy away from the clean-energy revolution that we need toward the dirty energy policies of the 19th century.”
He is a vocal supporter of universal health care and a living wage. He supports gay marriage and opposes the death penalty. If elected, he said he would seek ways to make Virginia’s tax policy more progressive by “substantially raise the tax rate” on wealthy corporations and wealthy individuals.” As a way to frame the issue, Ruebner drew a distinction between corporate taxes and individual taxes.
“Someone working for minimum wage is paying 50 percent more in his or her tax rate than the wealthiest multi-billion corporation,” he said. “Under any system of justice and equity, this cannot possibly stand.”
The Green Party candidate also said he wants to restore voting right for felons and encourage renewable sources of energy. He has supported measures that would enable localities to tax plastic bags, and he supports a ban on the practice of mountaintop coal-mining removal in Virginia. He’s in favor of placing a moratorium on the construction of new coal-fired power plants, and he is an opponent of offshore drilling on Virginia’s coast.
“I am convinced that working together we can shape a future for Virginia built upon social justice, human rights, equality for all and ecological wisdom,” said Ruebner.