Jill Stein in 2016 State of the Union address


On Immigration: FactCheck: 2.5M deportations counts removals, not returns

Jill Stein asserted that Obama deported "a record 2.5 million immigrants, more than any past president." Is that true? And why do Republicans claim Obama's deportation numbers are falling? Here's the relevant DHS Yearbook data:
AdministrationRemovalsReturns
Reagan 1st term<0.1M3.5M
Bush Sr<0.1M4.0M
Clinton 1st term 0.2M5.2M
Bush Jr 1st term 0.8M4.5M
Obama 1st1.6M1.6M
Stein's claim only looks at "removals": that means criminal deportations and people caught at the border. Stein is correct that Obama will reach 2.5M this year. The GOP is also "correct" because they look at the total including non-criminal "returns". Why cite one figure or another? Because Stein wants to demonstrate Obama's over-strictness, while the GOP wants to demonstrate his under-strictness!
Source: 2016 State of the Union: OnTheIssues FactCheck Jan 13, 2016

On Corporations: 80 billionaires own as much as the lower 50% of world

While working people struggle, over 90% of income gains have gone to the top 1%, corporate profits have tripled, and the richest 0.1% now owns more than the lower 90% of us combined. A mere 20 billionaires now own as much as the entire lower half of the US population. Globally, only 80 billionaires own as much as the entire lower half of the world's population, 3.5 billion people.

This unconscionable state of affairs cannot simply be blamed on greedy Republicans. The President himself has been leading the charge, with bipartisan Congressional help, to slash food and medicine for the vulnerable, cut critical social programs by nearly a trillion dollars in 2011 alone, and repeatedly threaten Medicare and Social Security. Meanwhile, Democrats oversaw a $16 trillion bailout for big banks and $5 trillion in tax favors for the wealthy. They made the Bush tax cuts for the rich permanent just as they were about to expire, and locked in low capital gains and inheritance taxes.

Source: Green Party response to 2016 State of the Union speech Jan 12, 2016

On Education: Cancel college debt: it's now $35,000 per student

Another travesty we can fix with the stroke of a pen is the crisis of student debt. Currently 43 million current and former students are locked in debt that they can't repay in the low wage economy--which is here for the foreseeable future. It's unconscionable to allow our younger generation to be the victims of this predatory debt. Average debt for the class of 2015 is over $35,000 per student, and 70% of students are affected.

It's time to bring them back from debt servitude so they can be full participants in our society. It's time to simply cancel this debt, as was done for the Wall Street criminals whose waste, fraud and abuse crashed the economy. We owe our students--the victims of that crash--at least as much.

The bailout for students can be accomplished through quantitative easing, the finance tool used to bail out the banks. This would be a huge stimulus for the economy, as young people are enabled to follow their dreams & re-imagine our future--as every new generation must

Source: Green Party response to 2016 State of the Union speech Jan 12, 2016

On Education: Make public college education free

We must make public higher education free. It pays for itself by a seven fold margin, as we saw with the GI bill following World War II. And it's the right thing to do. Just as a high school education was essential for a young person's economic security in the 20th century, higher education is essential now in the 21st century--and should be provided for free as well.
Source: Green Party response to 2016 State of the Union speech Jan 12, 2016

On Education: Repeal incentives for privatization/charters in NCLB

The assault on public education has also been led by Obama and the Democrats--including the targeted closures of schools in communities of color, high stakes testing abuse, and the demonization of teachers and their unions. Incentives for privatization/ charters built into No Child Left Behind and the Every Child Achieves Act should be repealed. It's time to fully fund public education respect and support our teachers, and to teach to the whole student for lifetime learning.
Source: Green Party response to 2016 State of the Union speech Jan 12, 2016

On Energy & Oil: "All of the above" policy puts fossil fuels above all

Despite much hot air about climate change, Democrats' "all of the above" energy policy has actually put fossil fuels above all. While Obama's policies increased renewables to a scant 5% of the US energy supply, this small portion has been overwhelmed by Obama's massive expansion of fracking and oil and gas extraction, both offshore and on public lands. Even as Obama boasted about the toothless Paris agreement that would allow a catastrophic 3 degrees Celsius temperature rise, Democrats--as well as Republicans--were trashing the climate by lifting the ban on oil exports (equivalent to building 135 new coal power plants), and expediting permits for fracking. Without any help from the Republicans, Obama alone gave a secret executive thumbs up to the major new fracked gas Gulf Trace Pipeline.
Source: Green Party response to 2016 State of the Union speech Jan 12, 2016

On Energy & Oil: Climate change causes record storms, floods, and drought

Meanwhile, climate change is accelerating off the charts with record storms, heat, fires and floods across the country while California's drought threatens the fruit and vegetable supply for the nation. Lethal impacts have already been set in motion that require emergency action--the breakup of the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets, permafrost melt, mass extinctions, and marine food chain disruption.
Source: Green Party response to 2016 State of the Union speech Jan 12, 2016

On Free Trade: Oppose bipartisan job-killing corporate trade agreements

Democratic priorities [joined Republicans] as the party went to bat for trillions in Wall Street bailouts, tax cuts for the rich, job-killing corporate trade agreements, and austerity budgets.

The President is also leading the bipartisan effort to pass the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP), a devastating secretive trade deal known as "NAFTA on steroids" because it will send jobs overseas, undermine wages at home, and roll back protections for workers, public health and the environment.

The President has already won from Congress "fast track authority", with which he will try to ram the TPP through Congress with little debate and no amendments allowed. But word has gotten out about this massive betrayal of democracy and passage of the TPP has been repeatedly delayed for the past year. We must continue to mobilize to defeat the TPP.

Source: Green Party response to 2016 State of the Union speech Jan 12, 2016

On Free Trade: Fight global trade deals' "investor-state" court system

TPP fundamentally attacks American democracy and sovereignty by allowing corporations to overturn and pre-empt our laws and regulations though a separate, non-US "investor-state" court system. Using highly paid corporate lawyers appointed by the World Bank to serve as judges, these courts can make us pay for a rich corporation's lost future profits when we exercise our democratic rights to protect ourselves from profiteering and more.

In a case filed last week in the same "investor-state" court system under NAFTA, the Canadian corporation Transcanada is suing US taxpayers for $15 billion dollars to cover lost future profits on their recently nixed $3 billion dollar Keystone pipeline project. A similar travesty occurred last month, when an "investor-state" court threatened to charge US taxpayers billions for lost profits due to country-of-origin food labeling--providing critical food safety information about where our meat comes from. This threat forced Congress to repeal the law.

Source: Green Party response to 2016 State of the Union speech Jan 12, 2016

On Immigration: We're deporting more immigrants than ever, 2.5M under Obama

The immigration crisis also needs an immediate remedy. In addition to deporting a record 2.5 million immigrants, more than any past president, Obama's recent night raids and deportations of Central American families and children are inhumane and morally reprehensible. These families came here as refugees from violence, poverty and chaos created by US policies like NAFTA, the war on drugs, and political and military interventions. It's no coincidence that the three most violent countries in Central America--El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala--are failed states resulting from US interventions that overthrew democratically elected progressive governments.

OnTheIssues Note: See related FactCheck; this 2.5M figure only includes "removals," not "returns". Counting "returns" as well, Obama deported fewer total immigrants than George Bush Jr or Ronald Reagan, but more than Bill Clinton.

Source: Green Party response to 2016 State of the Union speech Jan 12, 2016

On Immigration: Deportation of vulnerable refugees is morally abhorrent

Obama's recent night raids and deportations of Central American families and children are inhumane and morally reprehensible. Deportation of these vulnerable, abused refugees is morally abhorrent. We are all immigrants in this country--with the exception of native Americans. The diversity of multicultural immigrant America has always been the core strength of our nation. Our 12 million undocumented immigrants are hardworking, tax-paying community residents who take the hardest and worst paid jobs. They should be celebrated, not intimidated with the threat of deportation. It's time to create a welcoming path to citizenship and put an immediate end to the shameful era of deportations and detentions. Fundamentally, the immigration crisis must be resolved by ending the harmful US policies (including drug wars, predatory trade agreements, and political and military interventions) that are turning whole populations into refugees to start with.
Source: Green Party response to 2016 State of the Union speech Jan 12, 2016

On Principles & Values: We are in state of crisis--for economy, ecology & democracy

From the viewpoint of everyday Americans, the State of our Union, in point of fact, is not strong. In reality, we are in a state of historic crisis--for our economy, ecology, democracy & security.

Thankfully, these crises are still eminently solvable. With a majority of Americans disapproving of both establishment parties, there is unprecedented momentum for a new way forward, based on principles of democracy, justice and peace, towards an America and a world that works for all of us.

Source: Green Party response to 2016 State of the Union speech Jan 12, 2016

On Technology: Green New Deal for efficient public transportation

The economic and climate crises can be solved together, with a Green New Deal--an emergency WWII-style mobilization to revive the economy, turn the tide on climate change, and make wars for oil obsolete. It creates 20 million jobs to achieve 100% renewable energy by 2030. It creates efficient public transportation and local sustainable food systems, repairs critical infrastructure, and restores ecosystems. It immediately ends all new fossil fuel infrastructure, exploration and extraction-- including fracking, offshore drilling, extraction on public lands and in the Arctic. And it creates a planned, orderly transition to a decentralized, democratically controlled energy system, including public ownership of energy resources and infrastructure.

The Green New Deal will fund itself through massive health savings by ending pollution and improving food quality, with military savings from making wars for oil obsolete, and with savings from reductions in the cost of energy.

Source: Green Party response to 2016 State of the Union speech Jan 12, 2016

On Welfare & Poverty: Millions thrown off food stamps because they can't find work

Republicans have long been recognized as unabashed servants of the economic elite. But they have not been alone. Democratic priorities [include] job-killing corporate trade agreements, austerity budgets, health care reform that locked single payer out and private profits in, privatization of schools, expanding wars for oil and regime change, and unprecedented assaults on privacy and press freedoms.

As a result of this bipartisan assault, we have not had a recovery by any measure. One in two Americans remain in or near poverty including half of children in public schools. One in three seniors relies on Social Security to stay afloat. Wages are stagnant or declining, and real unemployment is nearly 10%, twice as high as the official rate. Forty-three million current and former students are locked in debt. Thirty-three million Americans are still uninsured, and up to a million more Americans will be thrown off food stamps (SNAP) this year, unbelievably, because they can't find work.

Source: Green Party response to 2016 State of the Union speech Jan 12, 2016

The above quotations are from 2016 State of the Union address to Congress, plus the opposition party responses: Jan. 14, 2016.
Click here for other excerpts from 2016 State of the Union address to Congress, plus the opposition party responses: Jan. 14, 2016.
Click here for other excerpts by Jill Stein.
Click here for a profile of Jill Stein.
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Page last updated: Sep 25, 2016