Image credit: JD Solden
Karen Smythe is running for New York Senate in the 41st district, a seat held by Sue Serino since 2014. In this episode, the candidate talks about health care, the economy, climate change, Black Lives Matter and other issues.
According to Smythe, addressing the economic pain caused by the Coronavirus will be her top priority if elected.
“We need to acknowledge that we have a high unemployment rate and we have an economy that’s in recession,” she says. “To me the very first, most fundamental thing is we need to reignite the economy. And I think we have an opportunity to do that in a way that both provides good paying jobs to people and gets the economy going so that sales tax revenue starts coming back in, as well as income tax revenue, etc.”
Specific initiatives should include investments in renewable energy and green infrastructure, as well as subsidizing education for skilled tradespeople.
“We need to be shifting our energy generation away from fossil fuel to renewable energy. Well if we invest in renewable energy infrastructure and we invest in the technology we need to continue to work on to make it better.”
Also in this episode, Smythe addresses single-payer healthcare, abortion, Black Lives Matter and criminal justice reform. And she explains her circuitous path to politics.
“Politics was never on my radar in terms of something I wanted to do,” Smythe says. “I was getting more and more frustrated watching how government didn’t appear to be working for the broader community. It seemed to be functioning great for a very select and elite group, but income equality was getting worse. And the fact that compromise had become a dirty word, that people weren’t working together to come up with solutions that worked for everyone, was particularly frustrating.
Note: Beaconites invited Senator Serino to join this episode but her office did not respond to the request.