US Congress hopeful Nancy Goroff: 'We need more scientists in public office'

The research scientist and Democratic candidate on the Green New Deal, the importance of facts and why Trump’s stance on masks is ‘unconscionable’

Nancy Goroff will be the first female research scientist to serve in the US Congress if she is elected this November. The Democratic candidate is running for one of Long Island’s seats in the House of Representatives against incumbent Republican, Lee Zeldin, an ardent President Trump supporter who has described her as a “radical professor”. Facing a tight race with issues such as the coronavirus pandemic and climate change looming large, Goroff, a professor of chemistry at the State University of New York at Stony Brook, is stressing her science credentials.

You’ve worked at Stony Brook University for more than two decades developing new organic molecules for solar cells and eco-friendly lighting in your lab. What made you decide to run for Congress?
I decided in late 2018, when the issues top of mind were climate change, the environment and healthcare. It came from being frustrated and infuriated with the denigration of science and expertise by the Trump administration. I’ve always advocated causes that I believe in – I sit on the Union of Concerned Scientist’s National Advisory Board – but it just didn’t seem like enough any more. I couldn’t stand by.

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