Another point Ms. Barr emphasized is that being a woman makes her a more insightful leader.
“This is a post-patriarchal age, and that’s what I represent; it’s a return to actual values of the Earth like growing food that we can eat. Not tomatoes made of fish skin,” Ms. Barr said. “We know how to get things done and we know how to get them done cheaply and efficiently.”
The problem with that notion, however, is that Ms. Barr’s main opponent, and the favorite for the Green Party nomination, is also a woman, Dr. Jill Stein, an academic and environmental activist who has been representing the Green Party in political campaigns at the local level since 2002, when she ran (against Romney) for governor of Massachusetts. Though Ms. Barr says she agrees on many things with Dr. Stein, she believes she is the better candidate—and took a shot at her opponent from the left, or at least from left field.
“I think I have far more to say than she does,” Ms. Barr said of Dr. Stein. “Some of the things that I say, they’re not out of a book and they’re not out of the party bible.”
For her part, Dr. Stein, declined to comment.
“They’re resisting me and the message that I’m bringing in a big way,” Mr. Barr doubled down. “To ask working people to show up and then go get their ballot notarized is nothing but voter suppression. That’s making me very angry, and I really beseech the Greens to be who they say they are and get their act together.”
Based on the most recent numbers provided by the Green Party, Dr. Stein is currently leading the race for the nomination with 143 party delegates compared to Ms. Barr’s 40. There are two other candidates, Kent Mesplay, who has 7.5 delegates, and Harvey Mikkelson, who has won just 1.5 delegates.
“I don’t know what the outcome will be. I know it’s a possibility that I could receive 99 percent of the vote. I also know that it’s a probability that I will not,” Ms. Barr admitted. “I’m just trying to encourage people to look at the whole picture, the whole big picture, and I want to bring up subject matter that isn’t covered in other presidential platforms.”
Should she not make it to the White House, she is more than willing to return to her day job—or at least to her job playing someone with a day job. During the final two years of her career as a the star of her eponymous show, Roseanne, Ms. Barr ranked as the second-highest-paid woman in showbiz (behind only Oprah Winfrey). The sitcom ran on ABC from 1988 until 1997 and, for its first seven seasons, held a spot in the top 10 on the Nielsen ratings charts. That’s a bankability the networks don’t soon forget
And though she’s done a couple of short-lived reality shows, including one entitled Roseanne’s Nuts, she may soon be reprising the form that made her career. Her latest effort is another sitcom, a pilot called Downwardly Mobile, in which she portrays the owner of a trailer park whose denizens include a “young Hispanic boy” adopted by the residents after his mother was deported and “a Wall Street couple that lost all their money.”
“It was about cooperation rather than competition, the key values that I hold dear and America needs,” Ms. Barr said emphatically. “I just wanted the American people to once again see themselves as heroic on television.”
Downwardly Mobile, which Ms. Barr wrote and executive produced, would reunite her with John Goodman, her husband on Roseanne. She says she “patterned each character” after the family she and Mr. Goodman headed on her successful sitcom. NBC picked up the pilot for Downwardly Mobile last fall, but according to Ms. Barr, the show was initially shelved because of her outspoken political views.
To hear her tell it, Downwardly Mobile tested well in California, but days before it was scheduled to be shown to audiences in New York, the conservative entertainment website Big Hollywood published an article based on leaked reports the show was testing poorly due to Ms. Barr being a “leftist.” Ms. Barr complained to NBC about the reported leak.
“I got really mad and I said, ‘Why would you release that information?’ And I was told, ‘We didn’t, that’s just a fake website,” she said. “Well, it turned out to be completely true.”