Green Party presidential nominee Jill Stein plans to show up to the first presidential debate Monday night at Hofstra University in Hempstead, New York. Except, because of her low poll numbers, she won’t be allowed on the same stage as Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton and her Republican counterpart Donald Trump.
For nearly 30 years, the Commission on Presidential Debates has run the final showdowns leading up to Election Day and has required candidates to earn a minimum of 15 percent in the polls. Unfortunately for 66-year-old Stein, she hasn’t drawn the necessary numbers from prospective voters.
Since announcing her candidacy last year, Stein, who previously earned her party’s presidential nomination in 2012 and has run and lost several Massachusetts state elections, has seen her poll numbers rest between one and five percent.
However, Stein has said she still plans to be on the college campus and reiterated her stance on America’s current political system. Stein has focused much of her campaign on corporate malfeasance and tried to woo younger voters away from both Clinton and Trump.
“Well, we are showing up to say what the American people are saying,” Stein told MSNBC on Sunday, “and it’s over 75 percent of Americans who are clamoring for an open debate, not a censored debate given to us by the Commission on Presidential Debates, which is a private corporation run by the Democratic and Republican parties for the purpose of silencing political opposition.
“We think that’s two-party tyranny, that’s now what a democracy looks like. Especially when it’s surrounded by a 1,000 security personnel and a high-barrier fence. This is democracy under lockdown.
“And we’re there to express the urgent demand of the American people to have a real democracy. Because the two leading candidates, the establishment candidates, have been the most disliked and distrusted ever in our history, according to polls. And the American people are tired of this rigged political system that’s created a rigged economy.”
Stein also took a shot at the mainstream media, saying Trump has received $4 billion of free media and Clinton $2 billion during the election cycle.
Libertarian Party nominee Gary Johnson faces the same issue as Stein. While the former New Mexico governor has seen his numbers rise in the last two months, Johnson has hovered around 10 percent, which is still too low to make the debate stage.