DuBOIS — Dr. Jo Jorgensen, the Libertarian Party presidential candidate for the 2020 election, paid a visit to DuBois Sunday as part of her campaign tour around Pennsylvania and several other states to petition for her name to appear on the ballots in November, and to be on the debate stage in the coming months with other candidates.
The tour follows a Third Circuit Court ruling denying relief for the Libertarian Party and alternative parties. The goal of the party and the tour is for Libertarian candidates to appear on the ballots in all 50 states and Washington D.C. for the election.
“I feel it’s really important we be on the ballot in all 50 states because we need to give people a real choice, and what they have now is not a real choice. We’re also working to get me on the debate stage, so that people hear an alternative because right now they’re not hearing an alternative at all,” Jorgensen said.
She said she will do just fine on the stage with the other candidates because her teaching background has given her skills at keeping problem students in line.
Jorgensen was at the Sandy Township Recreational Park on Sunday to give a speech on her platform and answer a few questions from the attendees. While she is making stops around the western half of the state, her running mate Jeremy “Spike” Cohen is making stops around the eastern part.
Jorgensen has been a member of the Libertarian Party since 1983, and was on the ticket as vice president nominee in the 1996 election with Harry Browne. She is a senior lecturer in psychology at Clemson University. She has used her doctorate in industrial/organizational psychology for marketing for IBM, and to start her own software sales business. After a career sabbatical to raise her two children she became a partner in a software duplication company, later becoming the sole owner.
Some key points Jorgensen focused on Sunday were lower healthcare costs with an open market system, and bringing the troops home to defend the country from threats while acting as a neutral party.
Jorgensen said she likes to focus on healthcare because “it is literally a life or death situation.”
“If there’s one message I’d like to get across to every American out there, it’s that we do not have a free market system… When I hear them (politicians) say we need single payer, that we need basically medicare for all, what I hear is VA hospitals for all, and monopolies do not work. That system isn’t good enough for any human, let alone people who sacrifice their lives for our country,” Jorgensen said.
She pointed to Singapore and the state of Indiana as successful free market systems. She also explained that lasik and cosmetic procedures are closer to free market systems because the doctors have to compete with one another. People are often paying for these surgeries themselves, so doctors have to offer the best prices. She also believes if patients are going to shop around for the best prices, they should get to keep the savings from that work.
On the topic of the military, Jorgensen said, “I want to make America into one giant Switzerland; armed and neutral.”
She does not believe it should be the job of American taxpayers to pay for the military expenses of other countries. Jorgensen also said that having our troops in other countries also makes it easier for terrorists to turn those people against our country.
“If we were at home being good peaceful neighbors to the rest of the world, things still might happen, but it sure wouldn’t happen as easily with us being at home being a good neighbor. So, I would like to bring peace to the world,” Jorgensen said.
Following her speech, she was also asked about her stance on marijuana legalization, pro-choice vs. pro-life, and open borders.
Another of Jorgensen’s key platform points is criminal justice reform which she wants to establish in part by ending the war on drugs. She wants to decriminalize all drugs. When asked about marijuana, she took this opportunity to explain this stance.
“It will help make the streets safer, it will help make your children safer. When was the last time you heard of a liquor store owner going up and down the halls of a high school, trying to sell gin to high school students? Or, when is the last time you heard of a vodka addict breaking into houses to pay for his habit? Without the illegal profit motive, the profits are not there to make it worthwhile,” Jorgensen said. “When is the last time you heard of two liquor store owners having a shootout to get the best corner? All of those are drug prohibition problems, not drug problems.”
Jorgensen also explained that the Libertarian Party as a whole is in favor of open borders, and believes the government should have as little involvement in people’s personal lives as possible. The latter point was made over a series of questions regarding the party’s stance on abortion and family law.
“Usually, when you get the government involved in anything they mess it up,” Jorgensen said. “The federal government, typically when they get involved they make things worse… The federal government gets involved in families in ways that it shouldn’t.”