Sunday, July 17, 2016

If The DCCC Continues Boycotting Progressives And Sabotaging Their Campaigns, Why Play Along With "Party Unity?"


On April 26, Pennsylvania held their presidential and congressional primaries. One of the hottest Democratic primaries was in the extreme southeast of the state, PA-07-- parts of Delaware, Chester, Montgomery and Berks counties, Joe Sestak's old district, currently held by 3-term, garden variety Republican Pat Meehan. Early in the cycle, the DCCC identified it as a must-win district if the Democrats were to stand any chance whatsoever of taking back the House this decade. Obama had beaten McCain there in 2008-- 53-46%-- and Joe Sestak had defeated entrenched GOP incumbent, Curt Weldon, in 2006 and held the seat until running for the Senate in 2010. (It's worth noting that then-DCCC head Rahm Emanuel had attempted to sabotage Sestak's campaign in 2006 but he won anyway and Emanuel claimed the credit.) Anyway, this year the brain surgeons who run the DCCC, Steve Israel and Ben Ray Luján, decided to ignore the local Democratic party activists and recruited "some guy" and declared him the nominee and gave him Red-to-Blue status.

Israel got busy urging Democratic donors to ignore the grassroots candidate, Mary Ellen Balchunis, a local professor who described herself as "from the Elizabeth Warren wing of the Democratic Party." Israel has shown a remarkable inability to elect Democrats to Congress but he has refined the fine art of political sabotage within the Democratic Party to something he can do in his sleep. His Wall Street-backed candidate, Bill Golderer, who was overwhelmingly rejected by all the Democratic and allied organizations in the district, brought in $375,402 for the primary. Israel's negative onslaught made it impossible for Mary Ellen to spend even $50,000. But local Democrats decided to stand up and tell the DCCC what to do with their candidate and their attempt to take over PA-07. On primary night Mary Ellen beat Golderer and the DCCC by a stunning 51,525 (73.8%) to 18,276 (26.2%).

The DCCC immediately removed all mentions of PA-07 from their boards and website. They removed Golderer from Red to Blue of course but didn't replace him with Mary Ellen. They just decided to pretend that the once "must-win" district no longer exists-- like Pelosi's sometime mantra, "when women win, America wins."

Blue America hadn't endorsed Mary Ellen during the primary. She checked every single progressive box policy-wise but we never really got to know her and we were busy looking for more "Berniecrats." She is a personal friend of Hillary's and although policy-wise she's more a Bernie person, she felt a personal loyalty to Hillary who had come to her class to lecture her students.

After the primary, we made a point of getting to know Mary Ellen better and getting a feel for her commitment to the key economic and social issues that motivate her. That and a sense that PA-07 is a winnable district-- far more so that almost any district the DCCC is engaged with-- helped make us decide to jump into the race and try to help. The latest Maris poll of Pennsylvania voters may show a close race between Trump and Clinton statewide, but in the Philly suburbs where Mary Ellen is running, the polling now favors a massive Clinton landslide-- 55-26%. All of the issues of economic fairness, social equality, gun safety, environmental protection that we talk about all the time are highlighted in this clear race between the reactionary Republican incumbent and the progressive Mary Ellen Balchunis. This is someone openly aspiring to go to Congress and bring another voice to the issues Elizabeth Warren, Alan Grayson, Barbara Lee and Raúl Grijalva have been advocating for.

With Israel, Luján and Pelosi still refusing to put the concept of "party unity" into practice, even as they demand it from progressives for Hillary's campaign, Mary Ellen really needs some serious help in the fundraising department. Joe Sestak is vigorously campaigning among his former constituents for her and there may be some big surprises coming this month from other top Democrats. Meanwhile, though, we're asking you to please dig as deep as you can for Mary Ellen.

And it isn't just Mary Ellen's campaign being singled out and targeted by the DCCC. Nope, while Pelosi's political arm prepares to spend tens of millions of dollars to rescue the failing careers of incumbents hated by Democratic voters-- like Collin Peterson and Brad Ashord, each of whom votes far more with the GOP on core issues than with the Democrats-- the DCCC has adamantly refused to get behind progressives like Mary Ellen who have already won their primaries and will face Republicans in November. Blue America is trying to help Tom Wakely who's opposing Lamar Smith in TX-21, Alina Valdes who's trying to oust Mario Diaz-Balart in FL-25, Paul Clements, once again opposing GOP hereditary multimillionaire Fred Upton in MI-06, or DuWayne Gregory, Peter King's opponent in NY-02. Their primaries are over; now it's time for the lazy, corrupt, incompetent DCCC to help them beat their Republican opponents.
Goal Thermometer

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At 5:56 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If The DCCC Continues Boycotting Progressives And Sabotaging Their Campaigns, Why Play Along With "Party Unity?"

Good question! The DCCC and the DSCC are themselves disloyal, to fellow Dems and even to democracy. There has to be a rebellion within the party like the Tea Party successfully activated. Of course, corporate swine were the ones funding and organizing most of it to begin with, and beyond as well. Where are our progressive billionaires? Hopefully we wouldn't need any.


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