Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Nanette Barragán Takes On The Machine-- In Los Angeles


CA-44 is a newly-drawn congressional district in Los Angeles, 70% Hispanic and made up of neighborhoods and towns like Willowbrook, Compton, Rancho Dominguez, South Gate, Lynwood, Carson, Wilmington, and San Pedro. The Member of Congress is Janice Hahn, who is leaving the House to run for County Supervisor. The CA-44 PVI is D+32. The area gave McCain 16% of its vote in 2008 and then 14% to Romney in 2010. It's pretty safe to say that whichever Democrat wins the primary will be the next Member of Congress. The creaky and corrupt Democratic Party Establishment is fully committed to one of the worst members of the state legislature, Isadore Hall, the lobbyists' favorite state senator. Hall is virtually owned by Big Oil, which has been very generous in financing his political career.

Virtually every sleazy political hack in California has already endorsed Hall. But now Hall has found himself in a pickle. Hermosa Beach Mayor Pro Tem Nanette Barragán has announced that she's running for the seat. And she made her name by successfully leading the fight against Big Oil in the L.A. beach towns. L.A. Weekly did a profile of her during the Measure O fight to keep Big Oil out of Hermosa Beach.
Nanette Barragán grew up in the rough Harbor Gateway section of L.A., the youngest of four daughters of Mexican immigrants. Her mother was a factory worker, her dad a TV repairman.

...[T]he oil drilling ban question is finally appearing on the ballot, on March 3, and Barragan is no longer just a homeowner. She has fought to protect the famed surfing shore from what she sees as wildly incompatible oil drilling, and is so passionate about it that in 2013 she ran for Hermosa Beach City Council. She was a political neophyte with little chance of winning office, but E&B saw her rising voice as trouble. The firm asked the Hermosa city attorney to agree that if Nanette Barragán got elected, the fine print in existing California law banned Barragan from voting on the oil drilling issue-- because her cottage is within 500 feet of E&B's drilling site.

But Barragán outfoxed the oil company attorneys. She found a "small-town exception" in the fine print that narrowed the range down to 300 feet; her cottage sits outside that range.

"I was surprised at the lengths the oil company would go, trying to prevent my election," she tells L.A. Weekly. "And after the election, they tried to stifle my First Amendment rights."

At 5 feet 2 inches and 105 pounds, Barragán, 38, is a fighter, an idealist and something of a contrarian. "My mom had a third-grade education. When people told her she couldn't do something, she didn't. When people tell me I can't do something, that just motivates me more."
She's going to need that motivation now... as the whole California Democratic Machine prepares to go to bat for Hall. Of course, she is getting some help from the grassroots and from activists who don't care what the lobbyists and Party Elders want. Example: RL Miller, cofounder of Climate Hawks Vote, is excited about Barragán's entry into the race. "The contrast between Nanette and her opponent couldn't be clearer-- one has a proven track record fighting Big Oil and winning, the other sides with Big Oil, as evidenced by his signing of the infamous "Perea letter" in which Big Oil wanted an exemption from California's landmark AB32 climate law. Nanette has a keen sense of the social injustices that accompany an oil-igarchy. Climate Hawks Vote is very interested in this primary."

As of today, Blue America is also on Team Barragán. If you'd like to contribute to her brand new campaign, you can find her on the main Blue America ActBlue page. Fortuitous that Barragán announced her candidacy on Equal Pay Day.
“I’m excited to announce that I will be running for Congress and I am glad to do it on a day that clearly illustrates how much more work needs to be done to make sure that everyone is treated fairly. I have always and will always be an advocate for women, families and equal rights.  Ensuring women get paid the same as men who do the same work will be a pillar of my campaign.”

Equal Pay Day is observed every year to show how much more men make than women, for doing the same job. It is estimated that on average, women who work full-time jobs still only make 78 cents for every dollar a man earns, despite making up nearly half of the U.S. work force. The disparity is even worse in California: African-American women earn 64 cents and Latino women earn 44 cents, for every dollar made by white, non-Hispanic men in the state.

Nanette became the first Latina ever to be elected to the Hermosa City Council in 2013 after making a name for herself as an attorney in the Los Angeles office of Alvarado Smith, APC, the largest minority owned law firm in California. Nanette, who was raised in Carson and the surrounding area, has deep roots in social justice work.

“I grew up in this district and have family here. I went to middle school here, studied at the Carson library and learned to swim at the Carson pool. My father had a home in Wilmington where he would fix televisions out of his garage and I would drive with him around Wilmington and San Pedro as he fixed neighborhood TVs. I want to go to Washington to fight for families like mine. They deserve someone who will be on their side and stand up for them. I’ll fight for jobs in these great communities, work to raise the minimum wage and guarantee paid sick and family leave,” said Barragán.

Labels: , , ,


At 5:12 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I like her, but it's a shame she has to run under the umbrella of a corrupt party, which will pressure her to conform to the corporatist norm.

At 5:59 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

She's not running as a Republican.

At 5:31 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not a Republican? While a member of the Party of Schumer, who Republicans describe as "a man willing to deal" (read: let's us have our way)?

I'll try to remember that.

At 9:29 PM, Blogger The Inspired Planet said...

She is a Democrat, and has always been a Democrat!


Post a Comment

<< Home