Alan Grayson Just Made It Official-- He's Running For The U.S. Senate
Blue America started a Draft Alan Grayson ActBlue page to encourage Florida's most progressive elected official to run for the U.S. Senate seat Marco Rubio is abandoning to run for president or vice-president. Over 440 people contributed. Today, with Grayson's official announcement that he is indeed running for the seat, Blue America launched a new Grayson page, Alan Grayson For U.S. Senate. The short video above, explains eloquently in his own words why he has made this decision and we urge you to watch in through and take it to heart. He starts with the experiences from a sickly childhood spent in a multi-ethnic working class area of the Bronx. Grayson's celebration of American excptionalism doesn't sound like the jingoistic claptrap on the same subject that spews from the mouths of many of his Republican colleages. "People of different races," he explains, "different languages, different religions-- even the food that we ate. And I learned from that that our differences are not something to overcome, or tolerate, but rather something to cherish. The things that make us different are the things that make us special. And with so much in common as human beings, we all deserve equality, dignity and respect."
A successful student and dedicated attorney before going on to become one of the most driven members in Congress on behalf of ordinary working families, Grayson then turned to one of his burning passions: health care:
I was a sick child. I had to go to the hospital four times a week for treatment. Luckily for me, my parents both had good union jobs that provided health coverage to them and to me, even when they were on strike If not for that, I might not be alive today, and talking to you. That’s why it’s so important to me that everyone, young or old, rich or poor, can see a doctor when he or she is sick.He then goes out to lay out his electoral platform-- except its not a platform based just on future promises. It's a platform based on what he's been working on all his life from the time he graduated Harvard right up until he was elected, from a then red district in Orlando as a Member of the U.S. House of Representatives.
Where I grew up, you had to work hard just to survive. I’ve met plumbers who could be engineers, truck drivers who could be lawyers, nurses who could be doctors. And I realized that if they had genuine opportunity, unchained by poverty, prejudice, poor health, poor education or discrimination, then we all would be better off. That’s the real American Dream-- to be all that you can be. And when everyone is better off, then everyone is better off.
In my case, I worked hard, and I received an admission letter from Harvard College when I was just 16 years old. For me, and for others like me, school just meant more hard work. I worked as a janitor, cleaning toilets, and then as a night watchman, on the midnight shift. I made less than four dollars an hour. I learned that the people who do the most unpleasant jobs often get paid the least. But education was my ladder-- up to better jobs, first as a reporter, and then as an economist. Education gave me my chance to be all that I could be, live a better life, and be of greater service to others. That’s why I want every student to be able to afford college, without suffering a lifetime of debt.
And everyone deserves a fair day’s pay for a fair day’s work. Every job should provide enough money to be part of the middle class-- to own a car, to own a home, to have a pension, to help your children through school, to have paid sick leave so that you can take care of yourself and the ones you love, and be able to see a doctor when you’re sick and get the care that you need to stay alive. As John Mellencamp would say, Ain’t that America?Over the years, Alan has been the most beloved Member of Congress by Blue America members and he has been generously supported by our members from his first run for Congress. Helping him get into the U.S. Senate is Blue America's top electoral priority for the 2016 cycle. Chuck Schumer, the de facto head of the DSCC now, grew up in New York City too, but in a solidly middle class family and he went to very non-diverse schools. I know; I was a classmate of his at James Madison in a basically all Jewish section of Brooklyn. Although they both went to Harvard, Schumer had a very different career trajectory, one that led him not into heartfelt service to working families, but into the arms of the Wall Street bankers and Big Business powermongers. His goal is and always has been enhancing his own career first and foremost. He has taken more money in narrowly legalistic bribes from Wall Street-- $21,052,681 since 1990, more than any other political figure in America who has not run for president and nearly double what the most bribed Republicans in Congress have gotten in the same time period, Mitch McConnell ($11,444,704) and John Boehner ($11,239,584). Today Schumer is working much harder than either McConnell or Boehner to keep Grayson out of the Senate. Schumer spends his time planting twisted gossip with simple-minded journalists about supposed Grayson outrages, all of whom have proven without merit. Schumer has promised his Wall Street backers that there would be no more Elizabeth Warrens or Bernie Sanders or Sherrod Browns in the Senate shining spotlights on their malfeasance. Schumer has selected one of the most corrupted "former" Republican bankster shills for the Florida Senate seat instead, so-called "New Dem" Patrick Murphy, a totally unaccomplished, spoiled ne're-do-well who has used his rich Republican father's vast wealth to buy political influence among a group of party boys and girls in Congress who have no basis for understanding the trials and tribulations of the working families whose interests they are supposed to represent.
After I finished school, I founded the Alliance for Aging Research. I was an officer of the Alliance for more than 20 years. We increased funding for research on cures for diseases of old age by more than 500%. I also served as a Director of Florida Senior Programs. Through that work, I recognized that everyone either is a senior, or hopes to be one, one day.
Social Security and Medicare are covenants that we make with each other, from one generation to the next. Many seniors have worked for the benefit of others for forty years or more, but they live in poverty. That isn’t right. Seniors deserve a raise. People shouldn’t have to pay taxes when they pay into Social Security, and then again when Social Security pays out to them. And Medicare must meet every healthcare need, including eye exams, glasses, hearing aids and dental care. Seniors have eyes, ears and teeth, and they are as much a part of good health as any other part of our bodies. Because Medicare excludes dental coverage, for no good reason, my father spent the last two years of his life with a broken front tooth. That wasn’t right.
As a lawyer, I filed lawsuits for the benefit of the taxpayers against war profiteers in Iraq. I won the only whistleblower case against those profiteers that ever went to a jury. Taxpayers Against Fraud named me “Lawyer of the Year.” I saw the worst side of war, and I saw how war has so many bombastic promoters-- and how much our country and our soldiers need a champion for peace.
I’ve had so many extraordinary opportunities in life. I was the first President of a company that broke the back of the government monopoly on international long distance calls. It grew into the largest provider of international calls to Hispanics in America, and it trades today on NASDAQ, with over a billion dollars a year in sales. I’ve raised five children, and my heart melts every time my 14-year-old son gives me a hug. I’ve been to very corner of the world, and I learned that we have so much in common: revulsion toward violence, a desire to be in love, respect for privacy and love of all children. But my greatest opportunity has been to serve in Congress, for one reason and one reason only: all the good you can do for people.
In the past two years in Congress, I have written more bills, passed more amendments on the Floor of the House and enacted more of my bills into law than any other Member of the House-- #1, out of 435 of us. Salon magazine labeled me the most effective Member of the House. Because of all the good we have done, more than 100,000 supporters have given their hard-earned money to our campaign. That’s more than any other Democrat in the House. In 2012, and again in 2014, I was the only Member of the House of Representatives who raised most of his campaign funds from small donors-- not lobbyists, or special interests, or millionaires, or multinational corporations. I don’t work for them; I work for you. I am unbought, and unbossed. I own nothing to anyone but the People.
I wake up each day knowing that there are 700,000 people who are counting on me to do something good for them in their lives. Next year, with the voters’ support, that number will be over 19,000,000. I will do my best to help every one of us, whenever we need help. I will work hard to be your representative, your champion and your friend.
Before asking for a different committee assignment, Grayson served on the House Financial Services Committee, where he outraged the bankster types and their protectors in government. Both political parties put Members from vulnerable seats on this committee because it is the biggest source of campaign "contributions." Grayson, of course, didn't take in the kind of money Schumer, McConnell or Boehner got. By the time the banksters realized he wasn't going to be a patsy for their plans, they had donated $333,514, a small amount for a member of the committee. Patrick Murphy, on the other hand, takes all of his orders from the Big Banks and carries their water and they are delighted to finance his career. The $1,151,573 in legalistic bribes from Wall Street he has already taken-- one of the most gigantic amounts for any new member in the House-- is expected to more than double as Schumer orchestrates Murphy's Senate primary against Grayson. Now, more than ever, is the time for Blue America members and DWT readers to step up to the plate for Grayson and just say no to the vile Establishment bosses like Schumer and to the Wall Street patsys like Murphy. Once again-- the Alan Grayson for U.S. Senate ActBlue page.