With his experience as the managing director of a data collection center, Ed Baker understands how to conduct quality opinion research. He hopes this experience will give him additional insight into the expectations of the electorate while seeking the presidency in 2016 as an independent. A lifelong Oregon resident, Baker started working in market research call centers at the age of fifteen.
His gambling addiction early in life resulted in Baker running afoul of the law. With the help of a gambling counselor, Baker turned his life around. However, his conviction prevented many job opportunities which led to a year of homelessness. He believes his inside knowledge of the criminal justice system will be relatable to many voters with similar experiences.
On the issues, Ed Baker wants to secure the border and American jobs by deporting all illegal aliens. Those who leave voluntarily can apply for re-entry. Baker also supports capital punishment for any who enter illegally.
Dissatisfied with the official reports, Baker wants to reopen the investigation into the September 11 terrorist attacks. He supports capital punishment for anyone involved – including Americans who held or currently hold positions of power. As a proud supporter of America’s military, Baker intends to overhaul the Veterans Administration and provide more resources for veterans and their families.
Baker has called for a reduction of the federal debt by eliminating waste, fraud and abuse while streamlining programs to be more cost-effective. Foreign-aid would be reduced or eliminated to free up money to for domestic purposes.
With his “tough on crime” positions, the independent presidential candidate thinks strong punishment is key to reducing criminal activity and advocates the death penalty for murderers, sexual predators and hardcore drug traffickers. In addition, he supports building more prisons to hold dangerous felons longer. He also supports an overhaul of the CIA due to their “apparent involvement in drug trafficking.”
Ed Baker hopes his lack of political experience will be a positive as poll after poll demonstrates America’s disapproval with the direction of the country currently ran by entrenched politicians. However, a lack of resources and media attention may be too tough for his campaign to overcome.
John Fitzgerald Johnson was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. He shares little in the way of his academic history, but he speaks briefly of previous jobs he has held. He is a veteran (of which branch of the armed services is not known), an ordained minister, and an IT Architect. He is also a recording artist, and as founder of the GMJ International Entertainment multimedia company, has produced music for a variety of companies large and small under the stage name “The Real Grandmaster Jay”. He campaigns under the slogan “Only we can fix us”.
Johnson is an ardent civil rights activist who is extremely concerned with racial inequality. He is particularly focused on the issue of police brutality, and is a member of the Black Lives Matter movement. He calls for a mandate that all law enforcement officers be required to wear a body camera capturing footage that cannot be altered or deleted. He also wishes to establish a Federal Special Prosecutor division specifically for the review of all incidents of deadly force used by police, with officers found to have behaved improperly having their cases automatically escalated to federal crimes. Mandatory annual training of law enforcement in deescalation of force, as well as civilian review boards with oversight power over police, are other ideas he champions.
Beyond civil rights, Johnson has permissive views on immigration. While he supports tightening border security to prevent illegal crossings, he emphatically declares that he will not build a wall. He rejects any notion of deporting illegal immigrants currently present in the country (with the exception of criminals wanted in their original nation, whom he says could be welcomed back after being sent home), instead seeking to grant them legal status so that they could work for taxable income. He is an advocate of guest workers' rights, supporting legal representation for such people who may have been abused by their employers, as well as requiring those employers to provide reimbursement for housing, transportation expenses, and workers' compensation.
Johnson supports woman's rights, as well. He wishes to expand funding for Planned Parenthood, provide guaranteed childcare for all Americans, and require employers to provide at least one week of paid leave for mothers whose children fall ill. On the issue of labor generally, he supports twelve weeks of paid family and medical leave for all workers, two weeks of paid vacation, and a minimum wage increase to $18 per hour.
With his decidedly left-of-center political bent, Johnson is likely to find supporters among social liberals, especially those concerned with racial issues. Fiscal liberals would also find little to object to in his platform. Political conservatives are not likely to agree with most of his positions.
Johnson is nothing if not optimistic. On his campaign website, he makes a veiled reference to the accomplishment of President Barack Obama, the first black man to achieve the Oval Office. Johnson displays a picture of himself – also an African-American man – on which he has written the phrase, “Who says lightning doesn't strike twice?”