Running for political office is a whole lot easier than getting a Ph.D. in science. The Republican Party’s stance on science in general and climate change, in particular, has motivated scientists from all across the country. They attended a political boot camp to learn how to run for office.
Former chemist Shaughnessy Naughton founded 314 Action and organized the event. She ran for Pennsylvania’s eighth congressional district three years ago. The chemist lost, but she was still determined. Science Insider reported that Naughton told the crowd:
‘Running for office is a lot easier than getting your Ph.D.’
314 Action placed coordinators in 35 states to support scientists running for local, state, and national office. She received inquiries from approximately 5,000 scientists. Naughton defined science broadly, as everything from a developmental psychologist to an industrial engineer to a high school science teacher.
Family physician Kathryn Allen planned a run as a Democrat for Utah’s third congressional district in 2018 for the seat currently held by GOP’s Representative Jason Chaffetz. The Republican just announced he was stepping down from office.
Politician, scientist, and biology professor at Florida International University in Miami Philip Stoddard is a fourth-term mayor of South Miami. He told Science Insider:
‘Larger issues you think are important are not going to get you elected.’
Computer game designer in Palo Alto, California Steven Woyach told Science Insider:
‘[I have] been throwing around the idea of running for office for a long time. [Participating in the event made is seem] ‘more doable and more daunting.’
A biomedical researcher at the Stanford University School of Medicine in Palo Alto Patricia, Zornio was considering a Democratic run for Republican Senator Cory Gardner’s Colorado Senate seat.
Zornio told Science Insider she was surprised reporters asked about her political opinions and background:
‘[She was] incredibly energized to meet so many people here that want to help. You know, when I go to a conference, people never ask me about me. They always ask about my data.’
A physicist at Brookhaven National Laboratory for 21 years, Elaine DiMasi believed her career was good preparation for politics. She was thinking about running as a Democrat in New York’s first congressional district against Republican Representative Lee Zeldin:
‘Scientists welcome complexity. We know that if you touch one piece of the health care system, you change everything else. We say, “Good, let’s see how we can analyze that.”‘
Check out this video of the March for Science:
— New Scientist (@newscientist) April 25, 2017
Featured Image: Humane Society’s Twitter Page.
H/T: Science Insider.