Youngish white woman with straight brown hair smiling at the camera

I am Constance Gadell-Newton and I am running for Governor as the Green party candidate. I am running on a platform of clean water, with an immediate moratorium on fracking and injection wells in Ohio, a living wage, and single payer, universal healthcare, or Medicare for all. Although we are known for our environmental stance, we are not a one-issue party. We stand for social justice, the peace movement, legalized and decriminalized marijuana, and grassroots democracy. We are a people-powered party and do not take corporate donations. I want to represent the people, and to give the voters of Ohio a choice and a voice in our democracy.

Recently, the Ohio Debate Commission announced a debate schedule for the two major parties, which did not include me as the Green party candidate or Travis Irvine, the Libertarian. Although my name will appear on the ballot this fall, voters may have a hard time getting information about me because of unequal treatment in the media and debates.

This is a great disservice to voters. The people deserve to hear from all candidates who will be on the ballot. It is the people who should decide the best candidate in this race, not the media or the debate commission. This will result in excluding and silencing the only female candidate for Governor in this race, a role model for young women. This type of exclusion is fundamentally undemocratic and is an injury to voters who may want to hear from all candidates. The people of Ohio are ready for a change and they should be allowed to hear the range of political voices to choose the best candidate for Ohio.

There are a lot of things the people of Ohio want that the two corporate major parties will not give them. While DeWine and Cordray debated Medicaid expansion, they neglected to talk about a universal, single payer health care system. I am the only candidate advocating for universal healthcare, with expansive mental health and addiction services, as an answer to the opiate crisis in Ohio. We need to start treating addiction as a health issue, not a criminal issue. I am saddened that the practice in Ohio is to lock up sick people because they have what rightfully should be considered a medical issue.

We are dealing with a highly polarized political environment that seems to involve LOTS of arguing over things like abortion, gun control and a wall. As Greens, we listen to the people to come up with innovative approaches which take into account diverse perspectives. While we agree that reasonable gun control measures should be enacted to protect the public, we also must acknowledge that innumerable young men are being profiled and incarcerated for non-violent gun possession crimes. I am the only candidate to recommend a gun diversion program for non-violent gun possession offenses which would involve gun safety and gun law education.

DeWine and Cordray are both unlikely to address Ohio's problem with police violence. While DeWine is a “tough on crime” candidate, Cordray has just been endorsed by the Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) and the Ohio Patrolmen's Benevolent Association. While the people are calling for a change and asking to end the violence against our communities, there is only ONE candidate who will really stand up for the people to be free from unwanted government intervention in the form of police violence. In addition to holding police accountable, you can rest assured that I will not sign off on any death warrants while I am governor. Although I count on activists to bring the issues to me, you should know that I am not endorsed by Right to Life, the National Rifle Association, or the FOP.

While two rich, middle aged white men, debated in a locked room with an audience of rich, politically connected people, those of us who protested on the sidewalk were told that we would be arrested if we even went past the gate that led to the building where the debate was held. Thousands of people driving by honked and waved at us and our signs. The people are ready for a change. Shame on the two major parties for refusing to give it to them.

In the past two years, the Green Party has seen unprecedented growth. We are reaching out to social justice, environmental, and food justice activists as well as forgotten voters across the political spectrum. We are looking forward to maintaining our party's ballot access this year with at least 3 percent of the vote or winning the election with as little as 34 percent. We are inviting people from diverse backgrounds to get involved, run for office in 2020, and to build a party with us that will really represent the interests of the people of Ohio. Go Green!