Green Party Presidential Candidate Dr. Jill Stein today announced her choice for running mate, the nation’s leading anti-poverty advocate, Cheri Honkala.
Honkala is National Coordinator for the Poor People’s Economic Human Rights Campaign, one of the country’s largest multi-racial, inter-generational movements led by the poor and homeless. Compelled by her own experience as a homeless, single mom, Honkala has spent nearly three decades working directly alongside the poor to build the movement to end poverty, and has organized tens of thousands of people to take action via marches, demonstrations and tent cities.
“Ever since deciding to run for President, I’ve been thinking about who would have the strength and courage to take up this fight with me,” said Stein. “Cheri Honkala has shown tremendous perseverance and leadership, despite remarkable odds. Her selflessness and demonstrated capacity to inspire make her the perfect Vice Presidential candidate to help me reclaim democracy.”
In 2011, Honkala became the first woman to run for sheriff in Philadelphia and the first and only sheriff candidate in the country to run on a “no evictions” platform, pledging to help families in foreclosure stay in their homes. She was a proud Green Party Candidate and received local and national endorsements, including from the National Organization for Women. Today, Honkala is internationally respected for her anti-poverty work and has received numerous awards.
“It’s immoral that children are hungry and homeless in the richest country in the world,” said Honkala. “It’s time for the 99% to stand united to serve our collective human needs instead of selfish, corporate greed. The Green Party is the only one standing up to Wall Street, and Jill Stein’s Green New Deal is the best plan for saving this sinking ship. I’m honored to fight beside her.”
Green Party supporters submitted over 200 recommendations for running mates to the Stein campaign, and several dozen of these people were considered, including the other Green Party presidential candidates, television comedienne Roseanne Barr and public servant Kent Mesplay. Ultimately, Cheri Honkala was selected as the best match for the Stein campaign’s political platform and strategic needs.
Stein, a Harvard-trained physician who once ran against Mitt Romney for Governor of Massachusetts, is proposing a Green New Deal for America - a four part policy strategy for moving America quickly out of crisis into a secure, sustainable future. Inspired by the New Deal programs that helped the U.S. out of the Great Depression of the 1930s, the Green New Deal proposes to provide similar relief and create an economy that makes communities sustainable, healthy and just.
In part, the proposal outlines initiatives that will create 25 million jobs, end unemployment, and transition the country to a green economy. The proposal also guarantees a halt to foreclosures and evictions, tuition-free public education from pre-school through college, and Medicare for all, and an end to corporate domination of democracy.
The Green Party National Convention begins tomorrow in Baltimore.