Wednesday, May 02, 2018

Bernie Endorses Progressive Champions In Pennsylvania


Bernie's point this week, when he asked his supporters to back 3 candidates in Pennsylvania, was that "if we are going to defeat right-wing Republicans in 2018 and 2020, we need to win in states that Trump won, like Pennsylvania. And, in my view, the only way we win in those states is by supporting progressive candidates who have the guts to defend working-class families-- white, black, Latino, Asian American, Native American-- and take on the power and greed of the billionaire class."

I wonder what went on in his mind when he picked his 3 candidates. Was it more than just paying them back for backing his campaign in 2016? All of them had done exactly that. The 3 progressive reformers-- John Fetterman (Lieutenant Governor), Greg Edwards (PA-07) and Jess King (PA-11)-- are in tight races. Fetterman may be the most progressive candidate in his race-- or perhaps Nina Ahmad is-- but Fetterman supported Bernie in the 2016 primary. Blue America likes them both-- a lot-- and so far we're staying neutral. Greg Edwards (who has ignored, or been to busy to respond to, our attempts to reach out to his campaign) and Jess King (who Blue America has endorsed early on) are certainly the most progressive candidates in their primaries.

Susan Wild and John Morganelli are Edwards' main opponents. Wild seems like a garden variety Democrat and is backed by EMILY's List, which is generally anti-progressive. Similarly, Morganelli seems like an off-the-shelf Dem, OK but nothing that special. Greg Edwards is certainly the best in this race for Charlie Dent's old seat, which just flipped from R+4 to D+1.

PA-11 has a different contour. Jess King is running a powerful race and was able to clear the field of primary candidates and stay financially competitive with the Republican incumbent, Lloyd Smucker. As of the March 31 FEC reporting deadline, he had raised $564,344 and Jess had taken in $515,812. Unfortunately, the ungerrymandering of the state by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court worked better for Smucker than for Jess, as heavily Democratic Reading was taken out of the district. It was formerly PA-16, with a PVI of R+5 but it's now PA-11, which has a much more daunting PVI-- R+14. (Remember, though, Conor Lamb, not nearly as good a candidate as Jess, just won a similarly red district.). Trump works magic for Democratic candidates. Bernie wrote that "Trump represents something we have never seen before in the history of the United States. It is not just that he represents the interests of the wealthy and powerful. It's that we have never had a president with more authoritarian tendencies than him."
The 2018 midterm elections will be long remembered as a pivotal moment in American history because, if we are successful, we can put an end to the disastrous Trump agenda. If we are not, we will have at least two more years of a rapid shift toward authoritarianism, the further normalization of corruption and the continued rise of oligarchy.

But we cannot defeat Trump and the Republican Party with the same playbook, or by supporting the same kind of candidates long favored by the political establishment and financial elite. That is how we got to where we are today.
He'll be barnstorming with John Fetterman, Greg Edwards and Jess King before the primaries May 15 primaries. "Our job in 2018," he wrote, "is to take on and defeat Trump's authoritarianism, xenophobia, racism, sexism, homophobia and religious bigotry. But we can only do that if we run candidates who can rally the American people around an agenda that works for them, not the billionaire class.
For more than a decade now, John Fetterman has been an outstanding progressive leader in Pennsylvania. From early in his career he has stood with the working families of the state as he advocated for a $15 per hour minimum wage, Medicare for all, marriage equality and ending the failed war on drugs. He has been an outspoken defender of women’s health, immigrant rights, racial justice and LGBTQ equality.

For the past 25 years, Greg Edwards has worked tirelessly to organize for justice in health care, education and economic dignity. The powerful grassroots movement behind Greg Edwards is championing Medicare for all, universal pre-k, debt-free college and raising the minimum wage, and he is living his values of unwavering inclusion by building the diverse coalition Democrats need to win in his district.

Goal ThermometerJess King has seen firsthand how the biggest corporations have hurt workers and squashed competition. In Congress, she will work to pass Medicare for all, rein in Wall Street, break up corporate monopolies, and support the real job creators: small businesses in our local economies.
Please contribute to Jess' grassroots campaign by tapping on the ActBlue congressional thermometer on the right. We agree with Bernie; she's a great candidate who would make a real difference in Congress. If the issues he's been campaigning on mean something to you, please help make sure she replaces Lloyd Smucker, someone who never strays from what Trump and Ryan demand from this puppet Congress. Jess is no one's puppet... and never will be.

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At 7:55 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Doesn't anyone speak actual English any more?

"But we cannot defeat Trump and the Republican Party with the same playbook, or by supporting the same kind of candidates long favored by the political establishment and financial elite. That is how we got to where we are today."

We are where we are today (the worstest president and admin and congress ever) by shilling for democraps, be they progressive, liberal or fascist (real or imagined in each category) in 2016 after the worst (did the least with the most) democrap admin in history.

Whoever said this is correct. However whoever said this is also, like DWT, shilling for more democraps (real or imagined) in '18 and '20, just as 2006-2008, which is why we have trump today.

So SAYING we need to change tactics or strategy or whatever.. and continuing to shill for the exact same tactics and strategy or whatever... is self-repudiating given context and the current sitchie.

Unless, of course, simply winning elections is their entire goal.

Might be nice if Bernie spoke about his view of what democrap GOVERNANCE might look like in '18 or '20, other than what it looked like in 2009-2017 (The Nazis or our donors don't like it so we won't do it).

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