Ever since it’s creation, the Green Party has been known for nominating candidates like consumer advocate Ralph Nader in 1996 & 2000, political activist David Cobb in 2004, former representative Cynthia McKinney in 2008, and physician Jill Stein in 2012 & 2016. It’s also been involved in a heap of controversy due to Nader and Stein being attributed to the loss of the Democratic Candidates in each of their latter races via the debated spoiler effect. Now that the 2020 Presidential Election is on the horizon, and speculation being high for both major parties, I felt it was appropriate to go over the confirmed and highly speculated candidates for the Green Party nomination, minus satirical candidates like Kanye “Deez Nutz” West and two Marvel superheroes secret identities.
The first major Green Party candidate to announce their candidacy was Sedinam Kinamo Christin Moyowasifza-Curry. Sedinam was notable for co-founding the Green Party Black Caucus, organizing for a political party in Ghana called the People’s National Convention, and running for the Green Party nomination for President in 2016. While Sedinam’s candidacy was not officially recognized by the Green Party since she failed to file with the Federal Elections Commission, she was invited to a Green Party Debate on RT. While her candidacy has not had the traditional campaign announcement, only saying that she’s a 2020 candidate in social media bios, much similar to her very grassroots candidacy in 2016, her platform will resonate well with Greens and any disgruntled Democrats that may arise.
The next major candidate is James Ogle. Ogle is known for running in the 1993 California District 17 Special Election as an independent, running for the California Green Party Gubernatorial nomination in 1994, running for the Libertarian Party nomination in 2012, and “running” for president in 2014. But the most memorable thing he has done is starting the fantasy organization US Parliament. His platform appears to be a mix of Libertarian Party and Green Party ideals, such as his website saying “We support the Libertarian Party’s philosophy of the non initiation of force, smaller government, increased liberty.”
Another major Green candidate is Gary Swing. Swing has been a candidate for political office sixteen times, eleven of those times was with the Green Party. The most notable of those runs was when Swing ran for Arizona’s Senate race in 2016 getting 5.48% of the vote. One of those times was him getting 30 votes in the 2012 Primary for President. While Swing is more willing to make fun of himself, with him being a member of the “Boiling Frog Party”, his overall platform is nothing out of the ordinary for the Green Party.
The last major candidate to announce their candidacy so far is Ian Schlakman. Schlakman was an entrepreneur, former co-chair of the Maryland Green Party who ran in the Maryland Gubernatorial Race in 2018 against Republican Larry Hogan, Democrat Ben Jealous, and Libertarian Shawn Quinn. While Schlakman was overshadowed by the Ben Jealous campaign, his jump from a losing a smaller race to running for president is comparable to the dark horse candidacy of Democrat Richard Ojeda, or a potential Beto O’Rourke candidacy.
Much like a possible O’Rourke candidacy, there has also been speculation on potential Green Party Candidates. The most obvious one being two time Presidential Candidate Jill Stein, who has expressed interest in someone else taking up the mantle. Four time presidential candidate Kent Mesplay is expected to run again due to his status as a perennial candidate. Although other speculated candidates like Ralph Nader and Congressman Ro Khanna are a bit more wishful thinking above anything else. But an unexpected speculative candidate has arisen in former Governor of Minnesota, Jesse “the Body” Ventura.
Ventura who has made a career outside of wrestling in the field of politics as a staunch advocate for Third Parties, being the only major elected official representing the Reform Party. While Ventura has been outspoken in regards to his Centrist and Libertarian views, Ventura has has helped progressive candidates from voting for Ralph Nader in 2008, endorsing Dennis Kucinich for Governor in 2018, and even voting for Jill Stein in 2016 over Libertarian Candidate Gary Johnson. He explained his reasoning due to her stances on the War on Drugs, Climate Change, and ending the Middle Eastern Wars. Ventura even stated on the Jimmy Dore Show that he was invited to the 2018 Annual meeting and would be interested in running for the Green Party. He reiterated in a TMZ interview that the Green Party was pressuring him for a presidential run.
Though each of these candidates has potential, they will not be payed much mind outside Third Party circles until their primary is over, and even when they do only the front runner gets attention, much like the 2016 Election when Jill Stein got attention even though her primary had not yet ended. Though they may be featured on another RT Debate. But it is still too early to make accurate predictions as of this moment as there has not been a poll to show any possible Greens chances while Libertarians do. Mostly due to more independent Libertarian News Sources, than ones affiliated with the Green Party. But we’ll see what happens.