Green Party’s Jill Stein says she deserves place in US presidential debates alongside ‘nightmare’ candidates

PUBLISHED : Monday, 05 September, 2016, 1:37pm
UPDATED : Monday, 05 September, 2016, 10:19pm

The Green Party’s US presidential nominee, Jill Stein, has fought back against claims her campaign policy ideas are a “fairy tale”, and argued for her right to appear in the presidential debates alongside the major party “nightmare campaigns”.

Stein appeared on Fox News Sunday with Chris Wallace, who quizzed her about how realistic her proposals and support was, apropos a recent Washington Post editorial. After a meeting with Stein, the newspaper’s editorial board declared she was “spinning up a fairy tale – an appealing fairy tale to some, but still a fairy tale”.

The board criticised the feasibility of her plans to end all coal, oil, gasoline and nuclear energy by 2030, her call to reconsider alliances with Nato members and a guaranteed federal job for all Americans, saying her “ideas are poorly formed and wildly impractical”.

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“I think they called me actually a fairy tale campaign, to which I would answer, in fact, we are living with a couple of nightmare campaigns right now that the American people object to at absolutely unprecedented levels,” Stein told Fox on Sunday.

“The American people are saying that politics as usual has been throwing them under the bus,” she added. “The two major party candidates have the highest ratings of disapproval and distrust of any candidate anywhere at any time throughout our history.”

Stein argued that because the two major party candidates, Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, are historically disliked, she should be allowed a place in the presidential debates that would raise the Green party to the national stage. “This is why it should be debated, because the American people are not happy with the way it’s going right now,” she said.

The rules of the Commission on Presidential Debates, the organisation that runs the debate, require a nominee have 15 per cent support in major national polls in order to be included. Currently Clinton leads Trump 46 per cent to 42 per cent on averaged national polls, according to Real Clear Politics. In the latest IBD/TPP general election poll from last Friday, Stein had just 3 per cent of the vote, while Libertarian nominee Gary Johnson – who has also pinned his hopes on making it into a debate – had 12 per cent. In most state and general election polls, Stein carries less than 5 per cent of the vote.

She blamed paltry media coverage on her lack of support among Americans. “You can’t say that you’ve had zero media exposure anymore because you’ve been here,” Wallace quipped.

“And I look forward to getting into the debates so the American people can hear the full story,” replied Stein.