web wcco campaign 2018 election guide Paula Overby: 2018 Election Guide

(credit: CBS)

Welcome to WCCO.com’s 2018 political guide!

We reached out to all Minnesota candidates running for U.S Senate, Governor, U.S Congress, Attorney General, Secretary of State and State Auditor this fall. Candidates were asked to provide a two-minute video discussing their platform as well as answer a set of our viewer’s questions.

Above is the video and below are the answers Paula Overby provided. This is not a paid advertisement nor does WCCO endorse any candidate.


Responses from Paula Overby, Green Party candidate for U.S Senate:

Should Immigration Customs Enforcement — ICE — be abolished, and replaced with a different agency to control immigration crimes?

I think ICE should be abolished, children returned to their families or given asylum. The program should be replaced with an easy process for people applying for entry to work, live, or become citizens. This is an issue that should have been addressed by Congress a long time ago. The major parties continue to exploit it as a campaign issue rather than work toward a bi-partisan solution. Failing to address it is a growing expense to taxpayers and the economy.

When politicians refer to negative stories as “fake news”, do you believe it?

No. News that is unfavorable doesn’t make it fake. As a candidate, I have been misquoted in ways that sometimes reflect a bias in the reporting but it’s certainly not fake news. Attacking media for fake news is a tactic to undermine the credibility of news. Beyond that, I believe that freedom of the press was intended as a secondary check and balance on our political system. The high level of consolidation in media ownership is a disturbing trend. There are also advertising and misleading narratives parading as news. That’s a problem.
No, the President should not be permitted to raise tariffs without an act of Congress. It clearly states in the Constitution (Article 1, Section 8) that it is the role of Congress, not the President, to regulate foreign commerce. Nowhere does the Constitution define “executive order” as a legitimate way on which to rule. The issue of National Security is clearly not a valid justification. Congress should rescind this authority and assume full responsibility for the powers granted to them under the constitution. The current trade disruption is a profound illustration of the dysfunction in our federal government.

Should the President be permitted to unilaterally raise tariffs on US imports, or should Congress be required to vote before tariffs are imposed?

No, the President should not be permitted to raise tariffs without an act of Congress. It clearly states in the Constitution (Article 1, Section 8) that it is the role of Congress, not the President, to regulate foreign commerce. Nowhere does the Constitution define “executive order” as a legitimate way on which to rule. The issue of National Security is clearly not a valid justification. Congress should rescind this authority and assume full responsibility for the powers granted to them under the constitution. The current trade disruption is a profound illustration of the dysfunction in our federal government.

Should able-bodied Medicaid recipients be required to work?

No, this requirement is a thinly veiled attempt to blame recipients for the gross mismanagement of these funds. A work requirement has no relationship to addressing fraud in the system. Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security are services paid for by laborers and these funds belong to the people. These trust funds have been exhausted by deficit spending. Citizen funds have been replaced by nearly 5 trillion dollars of the federal deficit. Congress needs to restore the solvency of these programs.

Do you believe North Korea will “denuclearize,” as President Trump says it will?

I don’t expect to see it any time in the near future. I perceive very little willingness to work with other nuclear powers to move towards a more global disarmament policy: something I see as a much more urgent agenda. North Korea is likely going to expect other de-escalation steps from the United States, such as removing our THAAD Anti-missile System from South Korea as well as ending war games off North Korean coasts. The THAAD system also represents a nuclear first strike capability against China and Russia. That does not favor disarmament diplomacy. The general U.S. policy toward denuclearization has included significant threats against North Korea. The world wants North Korean markets, but North Korea may not perceive that as a meaningful economic agenda the way it’s presented by the United States. They hold different values than the American Capitalists.

Do you believe in climate change, and should the U.S. rejoin the Paris climate accords?

Yes, I believe in Climate Change. What I find distressing is the fact that we are still asking this question. It certainly suggests that we are not going to see any meaningful solution from Washington. They remain tightly linked to corporate wealth and the fossil fuel industry. The lack of regard for environmental concerns is evidenced by both of Minnesota’s U.S. Senator’s support for the Polymet land swap.
Yes, the U.S. should rejoin the Paris climate accords, but it also seems like an opportunity has passed. The U.S. had the opportunity to be a world leader in renewable energy but the cost of maintaining our extensive military engagements leaves little discretionary budget for the kinds of education and infrastructure investments needed to maintain that technological lead. It is a case where market forces will likely lead the way in converting to renewable energy. Global solutions require a high level of commitment to diplomacy, compromise, and negotiation. Things that are noticeably lacking in hawkish U.S. foreign policy.