Four Candidates Seeking 2012 Green Party Presidential Nomination

With the late addition of Roseanne Barr to the race, we are now looking at a four way Green Party Presidential race.

The Green Party nominates its Presidential slate at the Green Party Presidential Nominating Convention (PNC) in Baltimore, July 12-15, 2012. Delegates to the Green Party’s PNC are elected by the various State Green Parties and Caucuses. The exact number of Delegates and the distribution of them among the states and caucuses has not been determined since the last proposal on the matter was rejected in October 2011.

Although some State Parties will have state run primaries, namely Arizona (Feb. 28), Massachusetts (Mar. 6), DC-Statehood (Apr. 3), and California (June 5), most state parties and caucuses will elect their delegates at state conventions. If you don’t know when and where your state party’s convention is, go here, find your state, and find out.

Here are the candidates:

Kent Mesplay – Dr. Kent Mesplay is an air quality inspector in San Diego County. Dr. Mesplay has a Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering from Northwestern University. He was born in Papua New Guinea, raised there for the first 10 years of his life. He identifies as 1/16th Blackfoot, and has a strong identification with indigenous peoples and their struggles around the world. Environmental issues and working towards sustainable, localized communities is at the core of Mesplay’s Campaign.

“Sustainability is Security. Humanity must do everything possible to stabilize the climate. Climate change is a public health and safety issue of epic proportions. It has been called the World War III of our time. Cutting way back on carbon emissions is a key step, requiring a change in our lifestyle as U.S. citizens. Scientifically, there is no debate that this is a real issue, that human behavior affects the climate, and that public policy and private action must be geared toward recognizing and correcting the problem.”

Dr. Mesplay previously sought the Green Party nomination in 2004 and 2008.

Jill Stein – Dr. Jill Stein is a mother, housewife, physician, longtime teacher of internal medicine, and pioneering environmental-health advocate. She was the Massachusetts Green-Rainbow Party’s candidate for Governor in 2002 and in 2010, and ran for Massachusetts Secretary of State in 2006 and picked up 350,000 votes. She has twice been elected to town meeting in Lexington, Massachusetts. Jill Stein has built a strong campaign team, led by former Green Party co-chair Ben Manski, that has hired on three staff and raised over $40,000 through mid-January. Jill’s campaign has already committed staff to national ballot access, and Dr. Stein has campaigned so far in California, Illinois, Wisconsin, Maryland, Virginia, DC, Massachusetts and Delaware. She has spoken at Occupy Wall Street events from Dover to Sacramento. The “Green New Deal” is at the center of the Stein Campaign. In her words:

“First, 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. Second, we will transition to a sustainable, green economy for the 21st century, by adopting green technologies and sustainable production. Third, we will reboot and reprogram the financial sector so that it serves everyday people and our communities, and not the other way around. Fourth, we will protect these gains by expanding and strengthening our democracy so that our government and our economy finally serve We the People.”

Harley Mikkelson – Harley Mikkelson is retired from a 26 year career with the Michigan Departments of Community Health, Education, and Human Services. He graduated from Michigan State University, served in the U. S. Army and spent one year in South Vietnam. He was an active American Federation of State County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) and United Auto Workers (UAW) member, and he has held several union offices. Labor issues are at the core of his platform:

“It is the working class perspective I hope to bring to this race. I do not want the Green Party to be the party of a small group of left wing intellectuals. I want to represent people who shop at Walmart as well as Macy’s. I want to represent working people such as teachers, factory workers, farmers, government employees, health care workers, etc…”

Harley Mikkelson has not filed with the FEC to date.

Roseanne Barr – Comedian, Actress, and Author Roseanne Barr first announced her intent to run for President on the Green “Tea” Party ticket last summer, and made her intent to seek the Green Party nomination official in the last week. Her late entry into the race has prevented her from appearing on primary ballots in California, Arizona, Massachusetts and DC. Roseanne Barr may be more commonly known as a comedian, but she has been an outspoken social justice advocate for decades.

“Both the Democratic and Republican parties are bought and paid for by corporate America and cater to the needs of the highest bidder as opposed to the people they claim to represent. I cannot be bought. I have been a tireless advocate of Occupy Wall Street since Day 1 when I delivered my campaign speech in Liberty Plaza on September 17th, 2011.”

She supported the 2008 Green Party slate of Cynthia McKinney and Rosa Clemente, and supported Cindy Sheehan’s 2010 congressional run against Democrat Nancy Pelosi. Ms. Barr lives in Southern California. You can find out more about Roseanne Barr at her personal website, Roseanneworld.

Additionally, in Arizona, which has very open ballot access laws for Presidential Primaries, six candidates will appear on their ballot. Besides Jill Stein and Kent Mesplay, on the ballot will be Gary Swing, who is also a Congressional Candidate in Colorado, and three Arizonans: Gerald Davis, Michael Oatman, and Richard Grayson. Grayson was a candidate for Congress in 2010,
but was embroiled in a controversy with the Arizona Green Party, which had identified him as a “sham” candidate.

Green Party Watch will be providing regular updates to the Green Party Presidential nomination news section as we hear it.

We will also be posting a Presidential Poll on Wednesday February 1.

  1. I am now supporting Roseanne Barr for the Green Party nomination for President. I ask that any votes I get in the February 28 Green Party presidential preference primary be considered votes for Roseanne Barr and be apportioned to her when Arizona delegates to the Green Party convention in Baltimore this summer are apportioned.

    I am now a “stand-in” candidate for Roseanne Barr. The use of “stand-in” candidates in American presidential primaries is an old tradition. For example, in 1964, to run in Democratic primaries against Gov. George Wallace of Alabama, President Lyndon Johnson used Wisconsin Gov. John W. Reynolds as his stand-in in the Wisconsin primary, Indiana Gov. Matthew Welsh in the Indiana primary, and Senator Daniel Brewster in the Maryland primary. (See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Democratic_Party_presidential_primaries,_1964)

    I am now being used by Roseanne Barr as her stand-in in the Arizona presidential preference primary on February 28. Votes for one funny Jew will be transferred to another.

    • Gary Swing says:

      Hmm… I don’t know Richard. I’m sort of disappointed. Yeah, you’re a real stand-up kind of guy to be a stand-in for a stand-out stand-up comedian…. but I’ve been enjoying your Project White House candidacy in Arizona. I’d rather see you continue to run on your own behalf. I loved your press release about deporting Republicans back to the 18th century, although I think they would feel more at home in the Dark Ages.

      Didn’t you say you were running for president because you’re a megalomaniac who is hungry for power? What kind of a self-respecting, self-absorbed megalomaniac would serve as a stand-in for somebody else? If you’re still hungry, I could treat you to some delicious, freshly baked cinnamon rolls.

      (For those who don’t know about “Project White House,” it’s a political reality competition run by the Tucson Weekly alternative newspaper, which encourages “average Joes and Janes” to run as candidates in Arizona’s presidential primary. Three of the six Green candidates and at least 10 out of 23 Republicans in the Arizona primary are Project White House participants.)

      Cheers,

      Gary Swing for President of Arizona

  2. Jack Wagner says:

    Jill Stein all the way. I’m glad Roseanne is in the race now, she’ll bring energy to our party. And now that it looks like we will need to work hard to make sure Jill is the Nominee, we can also attribute to Roseanne the focus and challenge it’ll be to build a Primary Campaign capable of beating her.

    America is a celebrity driven country. I understand the appeal of Roseanne (as she has been out spoken on issues and supportive of Green-Independent politics). I simply think it is still a good idea to have Stein as our Nominee, and even a Stein/Mesplay ticket.

    However, perhaps Roseanne could now help promote the Green Party of California Money Bloom on February 4th…

  3. Gary Swing says:

    I cast my preference vote for Jill Stein in the Green Party Watch poll. It could be entertaining to have Roseanne Barr speak at the national convention, but I don’t think she would be a good choice for president. Jill Stein seems like the best candidate seeking the Gree Party’s presidential nomination nationally. She’s intelligent, articulate and principled. A Stein/Mesplay ticket could be good.

  4. Dave Petrovich says:

    Is there any interest in bringing Rocky Anderson (the new Justice Party) into the fold? I think a Stein/Anderson ticket, or an Anderson/Stein ticket would be worth consideration.

  5. Maybe I’m missing something here, but doesn’t Tue fact that Mesplay was born in Papua New Guinea make him ineligible to be President?

    Not to attack his policies, positions, or leadership ability — I’m sure he’d make an excellent President — just isn’t that (unfortunately) unconstitutional?

    • That was supposed to say “the fact.” Autocorrect is weird.

    • Ron says:

      Good question. I think it has been responded to in the past, but I will look into it.

    • Brian says:

      “The Constitution does not define the phrase natural-born citizen, and various opinions have been offered over time regarding its precise meaning. The Congressional Research Service has stated that the weight of scholarly legal and historical opinion indicates that the term means one who is entitled under the Constitution or laws of the United States to U.S. citizenship “at birth” or “by birth,” including any child born “in” the United States (other than to foreign diplomats serving their country), the children of United States citizens born abroad, and those born abroad of one citizen parent who has met U.S. residency requirements.”

      “According to an April 2000 report by the CRS, most constitutional scholars interpret the natural born citizen clause as to include citizens born outside the United States to parents who are U.S. citizens.”

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Natural-born-citizen_clause_of_the_U.S._Constitution

      • So his parents were US citizens living in PNG? Okay, that clears things up.

      • Dave England says:

        Mitt Romney’s father, George, was born in Mexico to US citizen parents, and ran for Presidente in 1968 or ’72. It was a subject that was discussed, but no one challenged his qualification to run, or serve. I think Kent’s ok.

        • 1968. I have letters from George and Lenore Romney from the 60s and early 70s. I supported Lenore Romney in her campaign for the Senate from Michigan in 1970, mostly for her views on the war and reproductive choice. Today George and Lenore would be considered liberals — probably to the left of President Obama.

  6. Steven says:

    Ms Barr will bring attention to the party but I think it is the attention we don’t really need. Trust me, the average American looks at her as a joke and I’m afraid we will get sucked into that as well. Jill Stien is the right person. Fringe candidates like Barr and Grayson really are not helpful….fun but not helpful. peace!

  7. Kathleen Bushman says:

    How do I vote in the poll? I want to vote for Roseanne Barr – I am a registered Pacific Green Party member here in Portland, OR.

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