And then there was one.

As the dust settled on the first televised debate for this year’s gubernatorial contest in Massachusetts, one clear truth emerged. There was one candidate, and only one, who could legitimately be called “the people’s candidate.”

While Scott Brown positioned himself as the people’s candidate in his January special election victory, a late surge of campaign cash and get-out-the-vote efforts from Wall Street executives and lobbyists and other special interests surely put his campaign over the top. Capitalizing on the Democratic Party machine’s condescending sense of entitlement to the late Senator Kennedy’s seat, Brown asserted that it was “the people’s seat”, and rode his truck right into the leadership vacuum that the Democratic Party has helped to create. But Brown’s slick posturing does not make for genuine leadership. And as economic and ecological meltdown continues, that leadership vacuum continues to grow.

Enter Jill Stein. Mother, medical doctor, public health advocate, climate activist, and community leader. As the Green-Rainbow candidate for governor, Stein is running the kind of campaign that is easily marginalized and sidetracked. In this two-party political system, voters and pundits alike don’t know what to make of third-party political upstarts like the Libertarian Party and the Green Party (the Green-Rainbow Party is the Massachusetts affiliate of the Green Party of the U.S.). Even in Massachusetts, where 50% of registered voters are registered unenrolled, i.e. independent, there is a tendency to write off third-party candidates as a wasted or spoiled vote.  

Since Stein and the Green-Rainbow Party openly challenge the influence of money in politics, and refuse to take money from vested business interests, their campaigns are funded exclusively by regular people ponying up whatever they can afford. This is an incredible political disadvantage, on top of the fact that the Green-Rainbow Party’s voter registration has fallen to under 6,000 from its peak of 11,000 or so, and the general anti-third-party inertia of the populace. But this is also a profound political opportunity for Stein, for the Green-Rainbow Party, and most importantly, for the people of the Commonwealth. Having successfully made the November ballot through sheer volunteer support, and having clawed her way into the gubernatorial debates and media recognition, Jill Stein’s grassroots campaign has positioned itself for a major political breakthrough.

And here’s why. Stein is a genuine leader, and a true people’s champion. At a time when our society needs bold, visionary leadership, Jill’s presence in the debates is a game-changer. And because she’s the only candidate refusing tainted money from special interests, she’s the only candidate accountable to the people of Massachusetts alone. She is the people’s candidate, pure and simple. And there is only one.

Stein’s voice in these debates that are critical for our future is the voice of We The People. And with our political and economic systems coming unhinged, and the frenzy of special interest money that poisons the political process just heating up, it is time for the citizens united to take back Beacon Hill so that it works for the people. If we organize our voices, our dollars, and our votes over the next 2 months, we can put the people’s candidate into the people’s corner office.

Let’s get to work!

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