The New Dems Have A List Of The Next Batch Of Congressional Sell-Outs And Corporate Shills-- Their 2016 Endorsements
Yesterday at this time, we looked at some of the so-called "Democrats" in Congress who are willing to sell out Social Security and Medicare and other programs that make up the safety net. Who are these people and why aren't they Republicans? Well, most of them are from the Republican wing of the Democratic Party, the Wall Street-owned New Dems or the shriveled Blue Dog caucus. And yesterday the Blue Dogs announced 9 more congressional candidates running as Democrats, who will be the next in line to vote with the Republicans and betray Democratic Party values and principles at every turn. We've been writing about several of them-- warning Democratic primary voters-- all year. First the list of the 9 new New Dems:
• Isadore Hall, the most corrupt legislator in Sacramento, a tool of Big Gas and Oil and the tobacco and gambling lobbyists.This motley batch are decidedly not from the Elizabeth Warren/Bernie Sanders wing of the party. They are all... well, New Dems, where corruption is valued as a positive trait-- they call it "being practical"-- and the height of success is signing on to the Republican agenda. Who opposes minimum wage hikes? Who's against expanding Social Security? Who wants to weaken the already way-too-weak Dodd-Frank consumer protections? Who admires the payday lending industry and the private insurance industry and will move heaven and earth to protect Wall Street fraud? Yes... the NEW DEMS! This is the home of crooks and frauds like Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Patrick Murphy, Joe Crowley, Ami Bera, Gregory Meeks, Kathleen Rice, Kyrsten Sinema, John Delaney, Sean Patrick Maloney... the Democrats who get Wall Street money in return for helping allow John Boehner and now Paul Ryan call their horrific agenda "bipartisan."
• Darren Soto, who wants to take over the Alan Grayson Orlando seat and turn it into a corporate stronghold.
• Monica Vernon, a conservative Iowa Republican who now claims to be a Democrat.
• Val Demings, the picture of political incompetence from central Florida.
• Kathleen Matthews, the rich lobbyist wife of MSNBC's worst anchor, Chris Matthews.
• Lou Correa, a corrupt career politician, who Democratic consultant Chris Crotty pointed out to me is "as far right as you can be in California without being a Republican."
• Salud Carabajal, the establishment candidate chosen by the Santa Barbara establishment and furiously trying to pass himself off as a progressive and as the next term of Lois Capps, herself "an honorary New Dem, whatever that means.
• LuAnn Bennett, a real estate developer and the former wife of crooked ex-Rep. Jim Moran.
• Matt Heinz, a moderate ex-state Rep. from Arizona, easily the least heinous of the New Dem endorsees so far this year election cycle.
Not only are Kathleen Matthews, Monica Vernon, Isadore Hall, Salud Carabajal, Lou Correa, Val Demings and Darren Soto especially ghastly candidates, all of them have significant primaries from progressives running in the same districts-- respectively Jamie Raskin, Pat Murphy, Nanette Barragán, Bill Ostrander, Bao Nguyen, Bob Poe and Susannah Randolph. Several of the newly minted New Dems applied for endorsements from the Congressional Progressive Caucus and all were turned down, several submitting questionnaires that reflected a lack of understanding about what a progressive even is. Soto, a tool of Big Sugar, was one of them and the members were so horrified that they quickly endorsed his opponent, Susannah Randolph, who formerly worked as Grayson's district director. Last night Susannah told us that she's "proud of my consistent record of fighting for strong Democratic and progressive values and will continue to do so once elected to Congress."
DINO Monica Vernon is one of the worst of the fake Dems being pushed by conservatives. And she's up against one of the best progressive Democrats running anywhere in the country, former Iowa House Speaker, Pat Murphy, who laughed when we told him the New Dems had endorsed his opponent. He spends most of his time campaigning against the crackpot GOP multimillionaire incumbent, Rod Blum (the one who lied to Iowans by telling them he would donate half his salary to charities and then reneging) but he told us that he's "proud of my long record of progressive accomplishments for the people of Iowa. I first registered as a Democrat in 1977 and have been active in the party ever since. In the legislature I expanded access to healthcare for women and children, I passed collective bargaining, I increased the minimum wage and teacher pay, and I stood up for equality by passing an LGBT Civil Rights bill and defending marriage equality. It's no surprise Monica Vernon was endorsed by the New Democrats. Joining the party just recently as a former supporter of Phil Gramm and George Bush, she really is a new Democrat in more ways than one. But that's not who I am; in 2014 Republicans tried to attack me saying I was an FDR Democrat-- it was the nicest thing a Republican as ever said about me! In Congress, I'll keep fighting for the progressive values that make our party, and our country, strong."
Bao Nguyen, the openly gay and openly Bernie-supporting Mayor of Garden Grove contrasted his own progressive activism with Correa's career-long conservatism. "While my opponents are rounding up endorsements from the same groups that support the TPP and other corporate interests, the people are sick and tired of waiting for real progress in Washington. From tackling climate change to achieving full equality for the LGBT community, to protecting Social Security and Medicare, this grassroots campaign is about fighting the very same moneyed interests that my opponents seem to so eager to receive endorsements from."
When people talk about a battle for the soul of the Democratic Party this is very much what it comes down to. The New Dems epitomize corporate corruption in Washington and the Democratic Party move away from progressive values that Thomas Frank has so thoroughly investigated in his insightful new book, Listen Liberal-- What Ever Happened To The Party of The People?. Voting for New Dems and their candidates is like voting for Republicans who might not be anti-Choice or anti-gay but who are, in most other ways, right-wingers.
Listen to what author and legal scholar Michelle Alexander told Chris Hayes last week on MSNBC about what Bernie's political revolution is and why she endorsed it. Needless to say, all of the New Dems are the antithesis of what she's talking about:
The polar opposite of the utter worthlessness of the New Dem endorsements yesterday was this morning's announcement in the NY Times that Oregon Senator Jeff Merkley had endorsed Bernie for president.
In 2008, Blue America back the very progressive Speaker of the Oregon state House for a U.S. Senate run. Jeff Merkley was a candidate Amato, Digby and I all strongly agreed would make an extraordinary senator, guided by a strong sense of progressive values and principles that came from his life's experience, not from political calculation or expediency. His background, like ours, was working class and we recognized a kindred soul when we sat down with him. Right from the very beginning, he lived up to his promise, unlike so many others (take Jon Tester, for example, who have disappointed). ProgressivePunch grades him a strong "A" on his crucial vote score this session and for his entire career. And today-- in an OpEd in the NY Times-- he explained why he was endorsing Bernie for president, the first U.S. Senator to do so.
After considering the biggest challenges facing our nation and the future I want for my children and our country, I have decided to become the first member of the Senate to support my colleague Bernie Sanders for president.
I grew up in working-class Oregon. On a single income, my parents could buy a home, take a vacation and help pay for college. My father worked with his hands as a millwright and built a middle-class life for us.
My parents believed in education and they believed in the United States. When I was young, my father took me to the grade school and told me that if I went through those doors, and worked hard, I could do just about anything because we lived in America. My dad was right.
Years later, my family and I still live in the same working-class community I grew up in. But America has gone off track, and the outlook for the kids growing up there is a lot gloomier today than 40 years ago.
Many middle-class Americans are working longer for less income than decades ago, even while big-ticket expenses like housing, health care and college have relentlessly pushed higher.
It is not that America is less wealthy than 40 years ago-- quite the contrary. The problem is that our economy, both by accident and design, has become rigged to make a fortunate few very well off while leaving most Americans struggling to keep up.
And as economic power has become more concentrated, so too has political power. Special interests, aided by their political and judicial allies, have exercised an ever-tighter grip on our political system, from the rise of unlimited, secret campaign spending to a voter suppression movement.
...Bernie Sanders is boldly and fiercely addressing the biggest challenges facing our country.
He has opposed trade deals with nations that pay their workers as little as a dollar an hour. Such deals have caused good jobs to move overseas and undermined the leverage of American workers to bargain for a fair share of the wealth they create in our remaining factories.
He has passionately advocated for pivoting from fossil fuels to renewable energy to save our planet from global warming-- the greatest threat facing humanity. He recognizes that to accomplish this we must keep the vast bulk of the world’s fossil fuels in the ground.
Bernie is a determined leader in taking on the concentration of campaign cash from the mega-wealthy that is corrupting the vision of opportunity embedded in our Constitution.
And he has been unflinching in taking on predatory lending, as well as the threats to our economy from high-risk strategies at our biggest banks.
It has been noted that Bernie has an uphill battle ahead of him to win the Democratic nomination. But his leadership on these issues and his willingness to fearlessly stand up to the powers that be have galvanized a grass-roots movement. People know that we don’t just need better policies, we need a wholesale rethinking of how our economy and our politics work, and for whom they work.
The first three words of the Constitution, in bold script, are “We the People.” The American story is a journey of continuous striving to more fully realize our founding principles of hope and opportunity for all.
It is time to recommit ourselves to that vision of a country that measures our nation’s success not at the boardroom table, but at kitchen tables across America. Bernie Sanders stands for that America, and so I stand with Bernie Sanders for president.
|Integrity is a lonely place in a Senate dominated by Mitch McConnell and Chuck Schumer|