Kwon in 2020
|Leader of the Opposition|
Assumed office |
November 28, 2022
|Preceded by||Kenneth O'Conner|
|Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Sierra|
May 2, 2020 – November 28, 2022
|Preceded by||Nemesis Heartwell|
|Succeeded by||Maggie Chan|
|Leader of the Social Democrats|
Assumed office |
December 10, 2017
|Preceded by||Marcel Guillory|
|Social Democrats Spokesperson for Commerce and Labor|
September 19, 2013 – December 10, 2017
Steve Sanders (2013)|
Marcel Guillory (2014–2017)
|Preceded by||Daniel Dagger|
|Succeeded by||Christian Ball|
|Member of the K.S. House of Commons for Tenderloin (San Francisco's 2nd District)|
Assumed office |
March 19, 2008
|Preceded by||Alan Deng|
|Member of the San Francisco City Board of Supervisors from District 6|
June 1, 2004 – March 19, 2008
|Preceded by||Nick Sugiyama|
|Succeeded by||Brianne Liu|
October 10, 1977|
Sarangnha, Orange, KS
|Political party||Social Democrats|
Stanford University (BA)|
University of Sierra, Berkeley School of Law (JD)
|Revised Romanization||Gwon Mi-seon|
|This article contains Korean text. Without proper rendering support, you may see question marks, boxes, or other symbols instead of Hangul and Hanja.|
Born and raised in Sarangnha, Orange, Kwon attended and graduated Stanford University and earned a law degree from the University of Sierra, Berkeley School of Law, before she began her career as a civil rights attorney and social activist. Kwon entered political office when she was elected as a member of San Francisco City Board of Supervisors, running as a Social Democrat, in 2006. She became the youngest individual to be elected and hold office in the city government. She was elected as a Member of Parliament for Tenderloin and later became the Social Democrats Spokesperson for Commerce and Labor, serving effectively as the de facto Shadow Minister of Commerce and Labor under the Second Hong Government.
In 2015, Kwon announced her candidacy for the leadership of the Social Democrats following the resignation of Marcel Guillory. Positioning herself as a committed, principled progressive and a fighter for social justice, Kwon rose in popularity as a favorite quickly during the race, and won with over 65% of the votes in the election. She was critical of the Social Democrats' leadership for what she perceived as compromising social democratic values for neoliberal values shared by the Democratic-Republican establishment. During her first months as leader, Kwon adopted a more hardline approach towards the party's left-leaning policies and roots, and started the "Forwarding the Movement" initiative, which encouraged progressive Democratic-Republicans to defect to the Social Democrats, which was at odds with the previous Democratic-Republican–Social Democrats' mutual agreement for multi-tendency cooperation and preservation of the Progressives' grand coalition. Her campaign received mixed reactions, with some describing the move as a "schismatic event" for the Sierran left and liberals. She has been referred to as "Comrade Kwon" tongue-in-cheek by allies and opponents alike.
In 2020, she campaigned to strengthen the Social Democrats and became a contender for leadership over the House during the 2020 Sierran federal election. She became the prime minister-designate on May 2, 2020 after the results of the election were announced with her party winning a plurality in the election. She became the first Social Democratic member to become prime minister and the second prime minister since Hiram Johnson to be a prime minister who was neither a Royalist nor a Democratic-Republican.
During her early premiership, Kwon led Sierra's ongoing response to the COVID-19 pandemic, utilizing various emergency powers and measures. Her first major reform was the National Health Protection Act of 2020, which effectively nationalized all of Sierra's hospitals and medical clinics, and switched Sierra's provincial single-payer model to a federalized single-payer system. She overturned various executive orders enacted under McComb and Heartwell, including repealing a memorandum against immigration from certain countries in the Middle East, Central Africa, and Latin America. She backed the Federal Minimum Wage Act of 2021 and the National Labor Reform Act of 2021 as efforts to strengthen labor unions and workers' protection laws nationwide, and implementing both a wealth tax on Sierra's wealthiest individuals and an exit tax for those who leave the country due to capital flight. On foreign policy, Kwon ended the trade war with China and withheld support for Manchuria's ascension into IPTO. She also became the first Sierran prime minister in the 21st century to visit the United Commonwealth, meeting with General Secretary Daniel Muir. She has issued a series of executive orders, including a memorandum on federal executions, rental and mortgage payments, and student debt loan forgiveness of up to $50,000. A number of Kwon's executive orders and her government's actions have been challenged or are pending review in Sierran courts.
Under Kwon, Sierra underwent major territorial expansion with the incorporation of the Channel Islands as the 24th province of Federal Sierra and the incorporation of Sweetwater and New Oneida as the newest areas to the Deseret on March 6, 2021. During her premiership, Kwon would oversee the passing of the Organic Act of 2021 which saw the ascension of Sierra's territories in El Norte into the fourth constituent country of Bajaría in which all four El Norte territories were reformed into states and a new fifth state was created in the form of South Sonora. Bajaría's ascension into Sierra along with the Channel Islands, New Oneida and Sweetwater into the union would cause a new snap election in the form of the 2021 Sierran federal election which took place on May 28 and ended with Kwon being re-elected Prime Minister and her Progressive Coalition being maintained.
Kwon's second ministry, established following her second electoral victory, has been viewed as one of the most eventful tenures in modern Sierran history. In late 2021, Kwon led the Sierran response to the Amazonas incident and Caribbean Sea incident, condemning the attack while controversially opposing new sanctions on the United Commonwealth and members of the Chattanooga Pact. Her reluctance to impose consequences on the United Commonwealth continued with the start of the 2021–22 Caribbean diplomatic crisis. Kwon was present in the Parliament Building during the 2022 Porciúncula bombings, and has since led the investigation into the bombings. While having no influence over the ruling, Kwon oversaw the historic overturning of Doggart v. Cray by the Supreme Court through Boulangier v. the Deseret, effectively ending the court's precedent of declining to take cases regarding the Deseret's special status and leading the way for challenges to the constituent nation's theodemocratic government. In September of 2022, an investigation led by special counsel Judy Mahony established that Continental interference in the 2021 Sierran elections took place to benefit Kwon and the Social Democrats, but did not established that Kwon herself knew of said interference. Since the release of the report, senior members of Kwon's cabinet, including Maggie Chan and Ryan Kaneko have resigned and the Democratic-Republican Party has withdrawn its support from the government, putting Kwon's ministry in jeopardy. On September 27, a vote of no confidence passed the House of Commons 199–127, allowing for a snap election to be held. After the decision was made, Kwon called on Elizabeth II to dissolve parliament within the next ten days, but stated no plans to resign as prime minister or to dissolve her government.
In the 2022 election, Kwon and the Social Democrats suffered a major legislative loss, and the Democratic-Republicans won with a slim plurality of one seat over the Royalists. Kwon conceded following the election and formally resigned on November 28, 2022. Kwon announced that she intended to remain an MP and leader of the Social Democrats, and stated her willingness to work with the new government.
Susan Misun Kwon was born on October 10, 1977 in the Korean District section of Sarangnha, Orange. Her father, Kwon Chul-woo was born on September 9, 1955 in Gyeongju, Korea and immigrated to Orange in 1971 with his family as a teenager. Kwon's mother, Kwon (née Choi) Young-kyo, was born in Iksan, Korea, and immigrated to the Gold Coast with her uncle's family in 1973. Kwon's parents met while attending a Korean cultural program in Sarangnha in 1975 and married in 1976. Kwon has one younger sister, Chloe, four years her junior.
Kwon was educated at Ernest O. Lawrence Elementary School and was school friends with future Sierran K-pop artist Emma Chae. She grew up learning both English and Korean, and took taekwondo classes, eventually earning a black belt. She later enrolled in Alamitos Intermediate School and then Bolsa Grande High School. Kwon also practiced the violin and played on the girls' volleyball team in middle school and high school. She was introduced to politics by her history teacher during her sophomore year and got involved in the school newspaper as a writer. Kwon later joined her school's Mock Trial where she and her team reached the national semifinals. She became active with the Young Socialists, her local Social Democrats Party chapter (then called the Social Democratic Party), and the Students Against Western Imperialism (SAWI). Kwon initially aspired to become a teacher but decided to pursue law instead after being convinced by her civics teacher.
Kwon graduated from Bolsa Grande with the highest honors as one of the salutatorians and received a fully paid scholarship to attend Stanford University as an undergraduate student. She graduated from the university as a double major with a bachelor's degree in Political Science and Economics. Kwon moved to San Francisco City and enrolled in the University of Sierra, Berkeley School of Law in 2005. She chaired the Young Social Democrats chapter on campus and interned for the Supreme Court of San Francisco during her studies. She graduated with a law degree and was admitted into the Bar Association of San Francisco in 2008.
Early career and political activities
While she was attending the University of Sierra, Berkeley, Kwon worked as a social worker for the Give Back to the People grassroots advocacy organization. She also organized and led an all-volunteer task force of Chinatown youth to clean up trash and beautify Tenderloin District. She became a spokesperson for the local Asian Sierran community and engineered a number of rallies and demonstrations to protest against rising rental costs in the city aggravated by gentrification. On one occasion, she was arrested by police for disorderly conduct during a protest against a zoning initiative and spent a night at the South of Market Detention Center before the police dropped charges. Kwon made her first televised appearance as a professional when she testified before the San Francisco City Board of Supervisors, imploring them to reject plans to convert certain sections of Chinatown into pedestrian zone sidewalks, in June 2005. Her testimony received local media attention due to her fiery condemnation of the city government, criticizing them for their insensitivity to community issues and concerns. She received backing by members of the local Social Democrats, the Greens, and independents to run against the Democratic-Republican leadership in the upcoming 2006 Board of Supervisors elections. Kwon defeated Democratic-Republican incumbent Peter Ross and became a member of the Board of Supervisors. Her noteworthy election attracted widespread attention and elicited thousands of invitations to Kwon to give speech on her success.
Kwon ended her active involvement in her previous advocacy groups in order to concentrate on her responsibilities as a board member and a law student. Nonetheless, she continued maintaining professional contact with the Social Democrats, and occasionally attended local chapter meetings. As a board member, she raised funding necessary to improve living conditions in the older sections of the Tenderloin District, and increased accountability for neighborhood watch volunteers. She resisted plans from the provincial government to reduce funding for the city's education, claiming that it was "ridiculous" to cut funding to where over 90% of San Francisco's population lived in the city. In addition to her official capacity as supervisor, Kwon worked part-time in private practice as an attorney under the helm of the Association of Civil Rights Attorneys (ACRA) on pro bono cases in the Bay Area region. She attracted some controversy when she named Sierran Civil War general Isaiah Landon and Sierran Marxist activist Elliot Keller as inspirational figures who had influenced her political views and motivations at an open forum meeting.
Notable legislation Kwon spearheaded during her tenure as supervisor included successfully initiating free community college education for San Francisco City residents and raising the minimum wage to $14 from $12. She also voted in favor of lifting an ordinance that prohibited the homeless from loitering in certain areas during daylight hours, which she described as discriminatory and humiliating. Kwon also campaigned for a measure that supported banning of single-use plastic bags in the city, a measure which was later passed provincial-wide in a 2010 referendum.
Parliamentary backbencher (2008–13)
In 2007, Kwon announced her intention to run for San Francisco's 2nd seat in the House of Commons, as a Social Democrat, to replace outgoing fellow Social Democrat MP Alan Deng, who was retiring. As a community favorite, she ran a largely uncontested election as her district was considered a strong Social Democrat-Democratic-Republican constituency and both parties had entered into a local agreement to not field opposing candidates in the region. During the campaign, she received support from a number of prominent politicians including San Francisco Governor Terry Scott and Social Democrat Leader Felix Hunt. She campaigned on a very progressive platform, stressing her commitment towards advancing social justice and economic equality. Kwon acknowledged the traditional values of the predominantly insulated Asian Sierran community in the district and emphasized her desire to elevate and draw attention to their concerns, who had been "overlooked".
Shortly after winning election, she became a columnist on the San Francisco City Chronicle, sharing her thoughts on national politics, especially on foreign policy and fiscal policy. Kwon garnered attention and controversy over her fiery and passionate presentation in the House floor. During an appearance on RBS' Sunday Evening Dateline, Royalist MP Ryan Bannon criticized Kwon and stated that he had filed a complaint to the House Ethics Committee, claiming Kwon's conduct and decorum was "unruly, disrespectful, and ignorant to common parliamentary procedure". Kwon responded to such criticism the following day of the broadcast by saying, "Maybe if politicians worried more about real issues such as fellow citizens than arbitrary rules, I wouldn't come off as so abrasive to these people".
Committee assignments (2008–13)
While in the House of Commons as a backbencher, Kwon sat in the following committees:
- Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Family
- Subcommittee on Health and Medical Services
- Subcommittee on Employment Opportunity, Workplace Safety, and Standards
- Subcommittee on Labor Rights and Unions
- Committee on Judiciary
- Subcommittee on Antitrust, Competition Policy, and Consumer Rights
- Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights, Human Rights, and Property Rights
Links with the Sierran Liberation Army and other republican groups
Kwon's relationship with members of the Sierran Liberation Army (SLA) drew noticeable attention after she admitted to attending their meetings, including during her tenure on the San Francisco City Board of Supervisors, and expressed sympathy to their causes. The SLA were particularly active during The Disturbances and were once designated as a far-left terrorist organization by the Sierran government. Although the SLA and Sierran government eventually brokered peace at the end of The Disturbances, tensions between the group and government persisted into the 21st century. Kwon wanted to maintain dialogue between the SLA and local governments, and invited formerly convicted SLA leader and known NIC holdout Liam Evans to Parliament to voice the grievances of the SLA. She also protested against the trial of Patrick McGovern, who was convicted of murdering four people in the bombing of a Jacobite clubhouse, stating she "stood in solidarity with innocent people wrongly accused simply due to association". Her involvement and support for the SLA and other republican groups elicited protests and criticism from Jacobite and monarchist associations throughout the Styxie. She stated she received death threats from online communities, and experienced heckling at some of her public appearances by pro-monarchist groups. Kwon stated that she was seeking dialogue, not division, and that she had "utmost respect" for the Sierran Jacobite community.
The RBI opened a file on Kwon in 2010 due to concerns of national security. The Porciúncula Police Department and other law enforcement agencies also independently monitored Kwon's activities due to similar concerns, and investigated her links with SLA chapters. During the investigations, which lasted for five years, Kwon was involved in 37 incidents connected to the SLA, namely through her presence at their official meetings or informal interactions with known members. Banking records also revealed that Kwon made a number of financial donations to the Sierran Liberation Army, the United Farmers' Front, and Antimo, with her largest contribution being $10,000 to SLA respectively. The investigations were eventually dropped in 2015 while Kwon became a Social Democrats frontbencher, with none of the investigating parties able to find any conclusive evidence to suggest Kwon engaged in terrorist or subversive activities. Kwon has stated that she was "not surprised" when she discovered she was being monitored by federal and local law enforcement, but insisted she harbored no "ill-will" towards, "understood their concerns", and used the reports to assuage opponents' fears that she was participating in illegal activities.
Parliamentary frontbencher (2013–17)
Kwon was selected as the Social Democrats candidate for San Francisco's 2nd parliamentary district, Tenderloin, in the 2012 general elections, where she secured over 90% of the constituency's votes and was reelected into the seat. She was elected as the Social Democrats Spokesperson for Commerce and Labor in 2013 by her peers, effectively becoming a member of the Social Democrats' Shadow Cabinet and thus, a frontbencher MP. She was chosen as the keynote speaker for the 2013 Social Democrats Party Conference. Her keynote address delivered the party's vision and agenda moving forward, as well as lamentation of the disconnect between the Sierran working class and the urban left. She urged the party to reject compromising its values by opposing austerity and strengthen collective bargaining, arguing that the "frontline is always in the House".
She co-sponsored the 2014 Sierran Infrastructure and Transportation Improvement Act (SITAA), a $70 billion national project endeavor which set out to improve Sierran public transportation, whilst providing incentives to citizens who reduced their dependence on traditional modes of transport (namely diesel automobiles) in favor of public transport or alternative fuel vehicles. Kwon was one of the key architects behind the bill's provisions and appropriations, and was accused of earmarking a disproportionately large amount of the discretionary spending towards her district and province in comparison to the other regions.
Kwon was one of the principal authors behind reworking Sierra's public health system through the National Health Care Provider Fairness and Accessibility Act, which worked to regulate private insurer rates, lower wait times for surgeries and medical emergencies, and standardize a set of common guidelines across the provincial health care systems. She voted in favor of a number of other healthcare-related proposals, and opposed defunding programs poised by the Royalists during the McComb Ministry.
During her time as a frontbencher, Kwon joined a number of trade union groups and received sponsorships from a number of labor organizations including the National Teachers Association, the National Correctional Peace Officers Association, the National Union of Health Care Workers, and the Industrialists and General Workers' Union. She also chaired the Parliamentary Caucus on International Workers' Rights and the Parliamentary Caucus on Preventing Human Trafficking. Throughout her status as a frontbencher, Kwon maintained a strong presence with the media and made over 71 appearances across a variety of media including news panels, late night talk shows, Hollywood shows, and radio interviews. She was widely called the social media face of the Social Democrats, due to her heavy use of the Internet to connect with voters on a number of websites including Facebook, Snapchat, and Twitter.
Committee assignments (2013–present)
As a frontbencher, Kwon has sat on the following committees:
- Committee on Appropriations
- Subcommittee on Commerce, Culture, Labor, and Transportation (chair)
- Subcommittee on Education, Health, and Human Services
- Committee on Finance, Monetary Policy, and Community Development
- Subcommittee on Community Development and Transportation
- Subcommittee on Insurance, Investment, and Securities
- Subcommittee on Taxation
- Subcommittee on Social Welfare Programs and Policies
- Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Family
- Subcommittee on Labor Rights and Unions (chair)
Italics indicate current assignment
Leader of the Social Democrats of Sierra (2017–present)
On November 18, 2017, Social Democrats Leader Marcel Guillory, MP for the Gold Coast's 36th parliamentary district (North Central Grands Ballons) announced his intention to retire, citing his advancing age and health complications, which were preventing him from carrying out partisan functions in his view. Following this announcement, media speculation immediately concluded that Kwon would be one of the candidates running in the election.
Within hours of Guillory's announcement, Kwon confirmed her intention to run for the party leadership role, formally announcing her electoral campaign the next day at a press conference outside her office at the Parliament Building. Kwon ran on a platform based on "empowering and maintaining [Sierra's] labor movement" and centered her attention towards healthcare, welfare, and education, which she described were essential to functioning democracies. She also vowed to rebuff the Royalist leadership for failing to hold a new general election following the resignation of Prime Minister Daniel McComb, who became publicly disgraced in light of sexual abuse allegations. Kwon criticized what she perceived as complicity among the Democratic-Republican leadership, composed of what she described were primarily of centrists and Third Way politicians. She urged the "Sierran left to unite" and the Social Democrats to stay true to its revolutionary style of politics and agenda. Her announcement quickly received a number of endorsements from fellow House colleagues including Terry Scott, former governor of San Francisco and former candidate for the Senate. She received the second highest number of nominations in the race from fellow members of the Social Democrats. Nonetheless, her comments regarding the Democratic-Republicans, her age, and history of defying party line votes drew concern among some party leaders, including party leader Marcel Guillory himself.
Kwon became the frontrunner early on in their election, with her polling 5% ahead her closest opponent, Shadow Treasury Minister Nathan Cobain. Within three weeks of the race, Cobain dropped out of the race after polls showed Kwon had gained a comfortable lead against him. Cobain proceeded to endorse Kwon, effectively ending the race and securing Kwon the leadership of the Social Democrats. Kwon formally assumed the leadership role on December 10, 2017. Within days of her election, her electoral campaign team had been converted into her official party leadership office. Kwon and her team began actively searching for possible candidates to fill up the Social Democrats Shadow Cabinet.
Forwarding the Movement
Kwon made her first official speech as Social Democrats Leader on December 16, 2017, outlining her goals and plans for the party. She introduced "Forwarding the Movement", a new policy where the Social Democrats would adopt a more hardline approach to economic and social policies, including a refusal to compromise with the Royalists and other parties in the Conservative bloc. Kwon declared, "The time for appeasement at the expense of the working class is over," and called for the same air of skepticism to be directed towards the Democratic-Republicans. Her speech drew considerable ire from moderate Social Democrats and Democratic-Republicans, and even leftist outlets worried that Kwon's vision would only further fragment the divided Sierran left.
In the preliminary polls for the 2018 special elections on May 1, Kwon and her party received an aggregated average of 29% across five different national polls by respondents who were asked which party they were likely to vote for during the elections scheduled on May 10, 2018. These figures are significantly higher compared to the 2016 general election results, when the Social Democrats only received 6% of the House's seats and 19% of the popular vote. Kwon remarked that the figures were "very significant and telling" on the shifting political perspective in the Sierran public, especially for the left. The polls coincided with rising disapproval rates with both the governing party of the Royalists and the main opposition party of the Democratic-Republicans.
Prime Minister of Sierra
2020 federal election
Kwon ran as the leader of the Social Democrats during the 2020 federal election, when the party held only 17 seats in the House, or 6.2% of the total seats in the chamber. She directed her party's campaign under the Forwarding the Movement agenda, promising voters to bring forth progressive and social democratic policies which would be further to the left than the positions offered by the Social Democrats' main rivals, the Democratic-Republicans. She and her party had long been considered a powerful third party but not one capable enough to break through the traditional two-party dominant system of the Democratic-Republicans and the Royalists. Throughout the election, Kwon was nearly tied with Chan in the top of the polls, with the margin of error to close for most media outlets to reliably predict or call the election, even during the final week.
Kwon and the Social Democrats won in an upset victory with a plurality, winning 73 seats, or 28.02% of the House seats, as well as 25 seats in the Senate in the Senate elections. The legislative victory was unprecedented in contemporary Sierran politics as the ruling Royalist government suffered one of the worst defeats in Sierran history and the Social Democrats became just the second party, after the Reformed Republicans, to secure the premiership that was part of neither the Royalists or the Democratic-Republicans.
As prime minister, Kwon pursued a policy of diplomatic reaproachment with the United Commonwealth in order to difuse tensions that had emerged in the 2010s, especially under Daniel McComb and Nemesis Heartwell. This approach was done to preserve the Cold War policy of peaceful coexistence to avoid any potential conflict between the two countries. Under Kwon, Sierra focused much of its foreign policy focus on the United Commonwealth, the second after only the CAS and its member states, while controversially becoming more distant from the Antilles, a state that Kwon has been critical of and views as a reactionary oligarchy unworthy of recognition until it completes its democratization by completing the process completely.
On July 21, 2020, Kwon issued an executive moratorium to halt federal executions and postpone all scheduled executions of federal death row inmates indefinitely. On the same day, her party introduced a proposed amendment in the House to abolish capital punishment at the federal level.
2021 federal election
Leader of the Opposition
Susan Kwon became the Leader of the Opposition on November 28, 2022, where she succeeded Kenneth O'Conner of the Royalist Party after he was approved to become deputy prime minister as part of the Chan ministry. Kwon is the first Social Democrat to hold the position as Leader of the Opposition and is the third former prime minister to assume the office after Preston Bolivar and Nemesis Heartwell in Sierran history. She is also the first Korean Sierran to serve as Leader of the Opposition and is the most left-wing officeholder in its history as well. Kwon announced the formation of her shadow cabinet on November 29 whose first members consisted of former deputy prime minister Nazareth Ontoria-Diaz and former K.S. attorney general Roxanne Chavis along with several former cabinet members.
Political views and positions
Kwon supports abortion rights and opposes any measure to defund the Family Planning program or restrict legal forms of abortion. She has received a consistent, perfect 100% from the National Reproduction Rights Advocacy Network and a 0% from the Sierran National Right to Life Organization. She believes that abortion is an "inviolable, fundamental right for women" and that it should be "affordable and accessible" to all those who wishes to undergo one. She has voted in favor of federal funding for embryonic stem cell research and has expressed strong opposition to House Royalists' measures to remove abortion coverage from national health insurance plans.
Kwon spent her early career as a racial justice activist and civil rights organizer. She claimed her greatest achievement was "shifting national attention back to the fundamental issues that working-class Sierrans, the poor, blacks, Latinos, Amerindians, Asian immigrants, the disabled, the LGBTQ community, and the elderly endure on an everyday basis". During a 2006 interview with an independent radio talk show on JRC, she has criticized the Sierran Cultural Revolution for "white-washing Asian culture" while sidelining Sierra's other racial minorities, and "not going enough to achieve racial harmony". Since then, she has reiterated "the Revolution did bring positive changes, but a lot of work still needs to be done to address racism and racial issues".
Kwon has been opposed towards Sierra's current drug policy relating towards the legal treatment of narcotics in the kingdom. Kwon has opposed the continued criminalization of marijuana on a federal level and the federal government labeling marijuana as a more dangerous drug than cocaine. Kwon has voiced support towards decriminalization and pushed for pro-legalization policies in the senate since taking office. She's denounced prohibition of marijuana as dated, ineffective and harmful and has cited Sierra's high rate of incarceration, specifically inmates imprisoned over drug related charges, as evidence of her claim. Kwon has also cited statistics of equal usage of drugs between whites and racial minorities, but the latter suffers higher rates of incarceration and levels of legal punishment than their white counterparts. As a result, she's accused the laws of being racially biased and calls for them to be overturned immediately.
Kwon is a support of reform in Sierra's educational system and has accused the government of neglecting it and leading to what she calls a system of "criminal neglect and a soul-crushing pile of unnecessary burden" on Sierra's youth. She's a supporter of increasing funding to public schools and for raising the wages of teachers to $20 an hour and has accused the Sierran government of neglecting and dehumanizing teachers. In a 2018 interview, she said that the Sierran government "treats teachers like obedient robots and neglect them while we continue cutting taxes on the rich even though teachers are more deserving than every billionaire alive today". Kwon is opposed to for-profit charter schools and attempts to privative aspects of the educational system and has supported increased oversight into private schools to make sure they aren't engaging in political or religious indoctrination.
Susan Kwon has been a self-identified environmentalist since her college days and has been an advocate for environmental protection since the beginning of her political career. Kwon accepts the scientific consensus on climate change and has called it an existential threat towards Sierra and the world at large. In a 2018 interview, Kwon said that climate change was "one of the most urgent issues facing our society in the modern era and the governments of both Sierra and the world must take needed efforts to reverse its damage". Kwon dismissed suggestions for the government to not get involved in solving environmental issues stating that it was "an issue privatization and the individual cannot solve on its own" and dismissed the suggestion as "ludicrous and a sign of right-wing delusion". Kwon has been vocal in her criticism of Heartwell's decision to ignore federal action in stopping climate change and cited her family business ties towards the oil companies saying in an interview "stopping climate change would damage the Heartwell family's financial assets and privileges so of course she ignores it".
Similar to Governor Scott, Kwon has been one of the most vocal and prolific critics of Sierran and Anglo-American foreign policy, especially in terms of military intervention and involvement in world affairs. Kwon has been opposed towards the current foreign policy of Anglo-America, mainly its military intervention and involvement in the Middle East and support towards regimes such as Saudi Arabia. Kwon denounced the Saudi-Sierran alliance as an "unholy alliance stained in blood" and has called for a boycott of Saudi goods into Sierra and supported Scott's decision to boycott Saudi goods entering into San Francisco. Kwon has called on Sierra and Anglo-America to end support to Saudi Arabia and for a non-interventionalist foreign ploy arguing that it "would only breed more terrorists and convince generations of people to loath Anglo-America and take up arms against us as revenge for crimes we did and refuge to admit" she said in a speech in 2017 upon being elected leader of the Social Democrats.
Kwon has supported universal single-payer healthcare since becoming a senator and has added it to the Social Democrats' official party platform. She commonly cites the Nordic model as a model system for Sierra to adopt and commonly sites studies that show Scandinavian and Nordic countries topping the developed world in lists in terms of healthcare where they're ranked as having the best system. She also cites the single payer system commonly used in Rainier as a possible alternative to the Nordic model since in Rainier, healthcare facilities are private, but are funded with public funds/taxes. She calls to reduce the power of private insurance companies and their roll in the Sierran healthcare system. She's specifically criticized the high costs of healthcare bills, the ability of hospitals to raise prices on their patients and the lack of legal action against patient dumping, the act of patients being removed from the hospital if they can't afford the cost. In 2016, Kwon helped the Progressive Coalition aid in implementing a provincial-wide single-payer healthcare system and was viewed as a major achievement. In a 2016 interview following the event, Kwon said that she planned on making San Francisco a model for how single-payer can work in Sierra at large.
Kwon has been an avid supporter of LGBT rights throughout her entire political career. She first voiced support for LGBT rights in a speech given in early 2008 during a Social Democratic Party meeting saying that she supported legalizing same-sex marriage and praised San Francisco for legalizing it and being the first province to do so. She's on the record of helping pro-LGBT organizations across Sierra and helped legalize same-sex marriage in other provinces like San Joaquin, Santa Clara and other provinces in the Styxie. Kwon has been critical of the Royalist Party's position on gay rights and accused the party of adhering to "outdated, defunct, and nonsensical thoughts of a long-gone age" in a 2014 speech. After Nemesis Heartwell was elected Prime Minister in 2017, Kwon said that she was "skeptical" of her stance on LGBT rights saying in an interview "I'll give her credit for her willingness to support legalization of same-sex marriage in the provinces, but her reluctancy to stop bigoted business owners from discriminating against LGBT customers for what they are is disturbing". Kwon opposes allowing businesses to refuse service to LGBT Sierrans if it violates their conscious saying that "no one would accept such a claim for refusing service to non-white Sierrans so why do we allow it for gays?". Kwon said that such decisions further politicize LGBT Sierrans' identities and prevents them from integrating into society.
Kwon is an outspoken critic of the monarchy and has called for its abolition. She has admitted to holding a positive view of the historic late senator and republican advocate, Isaiah Landon, and has referred to the monarchy as an outdated institution and has called it a symbol of inequality in Sierran society. She's a known republican and has supported the idea of establishing a republican government as a means of replacing the monarchy. When Charles II abdicated in 2015, Kwon said that it was "long overdue" and wished that his abdication brought an end to the monarchy. She never attended the coronation of Elizabeth II saying "while Angelina seems like a nice girl, she's unfit to govern a nation since she lacks the experience and wasn't even elected by the people". She took the "citizen's oath" by Republic, pledging to swear allegiance towards the people of Sierra and not the monarch and said that if Elizabeth II was to be the head of state of Sierra, she should run in an election echoing the same statement made by San Francisco governor and fellow republican Terry Scott.
Views on CAS
Kwon herself supports the Conference of American States and generally holds positive views of the intergovernmental organization, though she has criticized certain aspects of the organization. She's criticized the policies of the CAS towards foreign policy and economics such as the CAS involvement in the Middle East and Africa and the support of economic policies that have lead to high levels of income inequality. She supports reforming the CAS and thus supports the Social Democrats of America as a result. She opposes pulling out of the organization believing that it was a sign of isolationism, but has been hesitant on the proposed currency of the Amero saying "I'd back it up only if the CAS accepts a progressive social democratic agenda to improve the lives of Anglo-Americans across the region. If this is done, than support for the CAS will rise and more people will be willing to accept the currency and further integration into the union". In general, she's an American unionist.
Kwon has been one of the most vocal proponents of political reform since her entry into national politics in 2008. She's been highly critical of Sierra's political structure arguing that it's rigged in favor of the Libertarians, Royalists and Democratic-Republicans and has lead to the establishment of a "electoral triumvirate and political monopoly" that excludes and seeks to reduce the influence of third and fourth parties. She supports reforming the Senate and seeks to replace the electoral system with ranked-choice voting instead of the current First-past-the-post system already in place. She's against the existence of commissioned senators arguing that the largely undemocratic position undermines the influence of Sierran voters and supports ending the practice and making them regular senators subjected to being voted in and out of office in elections rather than being approved by provincial governments and legislatures.
Kwon lives in Union Square, San Francisco City, and has never married or had children, leading to speculation about her sexual orientation. In 2013, Kwon has stated that her work made it "very difficult to devote energy to romantic relationships". Since 2014, she has since been in a relationship with Johnnie Le, her former law professor at the University of Sierra, Berkeley, 7 years her senior. Her relationship with Le received media attention as it was discovered Le was a married man with two children, and maintained an affair with Kwon for six months before Le divorced his wife. Kwon has refused to comment on the personal situation although Le and his former spouse have insisted the divorce "had nothing to do" with Le and Kwon's relationship.
When asked about her faith in 2015, Kwon stated, "I was born and raised Methodist. What I learned from sermons and reading the Bible has translated into a life committed to social justice and equality. The teachings of Jesus Christ has inspired me profoundly and He remains a constant force in my life and career. Jesus was and is a socialist." Kwon is a member of the United Methodist Church of Sierra, an autonomous church and affiliate of the worldwide United Methodist Church in Sierra.
She owns a pet dog named Boba, who moved in with her into the Getty House after she became prime minister. Her dog has become the subject of various Internet memes and is officially designated as the "Chief Barker of Sierra".
|2008 federal election: Tenderloin|
|Social Democrats||Susan Kwon||13,123||41.2%||+11.2%|
|Social Democrats gain from Democratic-Republican||Swing|
|2013 federal election: Tenderloin|
|Social Democrats||Susan Kwon||21,108||43.2%||+2.0%|
|Social Democrats hold||Swing|