Jill Stein, a Massachusetts physician, and Cheri Honkala (whose epithet in NPR's report is "formerly homeless single mother") secured the Green Party's coveted presidential and vice-presidential nominations on Saturday. Stein secured 193.5 delegates, compared to comedian and avid motorcyclist Roseanne Barr's 72, thereby earning the chance to siphon a few votes away from the Democratic Party during the upcoming election.
"It's a convenient scapegoat," said Stein, addressing concerns that any traction her party gains in the 2012 election would only help the Romney campaign, "and it's a convenient public relations campaign to try to suppress the voice of the opposition." Though the Green Party hopes to be on the ballot in 45 states come November, it's currently on the ballot in only 21 states. Still, Saturday marked a significant moment in the party's 11-year history, as Stein became the first Green Party presidential candidate to qualify for federal matching funds (party officials hope to spend up to $2 million on the upcoming race).
Roseanne had been a rumored choice to become Stein's running mate, though some (casual) observers believe Honkala will do more to attract single mothers and those living in poverty to the Green Party this election cycle. In case you're extremely dissatisfied with the current state of corporate politics in this country, — or Ralph Nader bewitched you with his charm and grace in any of the previous decade's presidential elections — Stein will be running on a pretty ambitious platform: she aims to create 25 million new jobs, downsize the military, legalize marijuana, end unemployment, and guarantee college education for everyone. Excited yet? Hopefully after a few more elections a candidate like Stein will achieve broader appeal, or at least not have to read the phrase "long-shot Green Party candidate" in front of her name whenever she's mentioned in the news.
Mass. doctor wins Green Party nomination [AP via Yahoo!]