Saturday, April 17, 2010

Marcy Winograd Takes On Jane Harman At The California Democratic Convention


Grassroots Democrats recognize Jane Harman as the worst elected Democrat in the state. Her boast "I am proud to be introduced as the best Republican in the Democratic Party" has come back to haunt her, as has a shameful congressional record that backs up the boast. This weekend she's being forced to come down from her high horse-- she's the wealthiest Democrat in the House-- to defend herself in the state Democratic convention here in Los Angeles.

Marcy Winograd, the progressive community activist who has been endorsed by Blue America, is on the verge of pulling off the year's biggest upset and ending a political career that has been all about serving corporations and collaborating with Republicans on war, torture and the curtailment of civil liberties. This week Marcy sent every delegate to the convention this letter, making the case for why they should deny Harman their support:
I need your support to block the endorsement of Blue Dog Jane Harman on the floor of the California Democratic Party convention in Los Angeles this weekend. Harman is a formidable opponent for the 36th congressional district seat (West LA to San Pedro), particularly since she has hired campaign consultant Harvey Englander, notorious for engineering the passage of Howard Jarvis’ Prop 13.

You will hear Harman’s appointees argue that we should not usurp the local caucus’s power to endorse. Our Party’s bylaws, however, provide for exactly this type of challenge because when a candidate is endorsed that endorsement reflects the will of the entire statewide Party, not just local delegates. Moreover, when a corporate Democrat, funded by military contractors and personally invested in those same contractors, takes us to war without exercising her oversight responsibility all of us pay the price.

You may hear that we must respect what Party activists in the 36th congressional district want. Please know that I am proud to be endorsed by the majority of grassroots Democratic clubs in my district, including the San Pedro Democratic Club; Torrance Democratic Club; Progressive Democratic Club (Harbor); Gardena Valley Democratic Club; Progressive Democrats of America-36th District.

Our efforts begin on Friday night when the Progressive Caucus convenes with national radio broadcaster Jim Hightower at the Palm Restaurant, 1100 Flower Street, across from the Marriott Hotel, where the convention will be held. All are welcome to attend and commit to gathering signatures for my petition to overturn Harman’s endorsement in the local caucus Saturday evening.

That local caucus, comprised of many elected officials and their appointed delegates, will undoubtedly endorse Harman, the candidate who once introduced herself to convention delegates as “the best Republican in the Democratic Party.”

Following her local caucus endorsement, we need to collect 300 delegate signatures within a few hours on Saturday night to overturn the endorsement and push this fight to the floor on Sunday morning. Dozens of Winograd for Congress supporters will circulate with clipboards, fanning out to collect the required petition signatures.

To block Harman’s endorsement on the floor, I will need 50% plus 1 delegate to reject her candidacy. For me to obtain an endorsement, I will need 75% of the floor.

Winograd vs. Harman: What’s the Difference?

I am a proud progressive, a public school teacher on leave from Crenshaw HS in South Los Angeles, and an organizer of the Progressive Caucus of the California Democratic Party.

This is not a contest between two corporate Democrats.

It’s between Our Street vs. Wall Street.

Homes vs. Banks.

Jobs vs. Wars.

At stake are the values and soul of the Democratic Party.

Who are we? What do we stand for?

As a co-founder of Progressive Democrats of America’s Los Angeles chapter, I helped write, along with author Norman Solomon and Progressive Caucus Chair Karen Bernal, the resolutions putting our Party on record calling for an end to the US air and ground wars in Afghanistan. I also put our party on record calling for a cap on usurious bank interest rates, parole and sentencing reform, and an end to unfair trade agreements.

As a leader in the anti-war movement, I organized a 1,000-strong town hall with Congresswoman Maxine Waters, and then led a delegation to Washington to introduce our representatives to wounded veterans with Iraq Veterans Against the War. On the election protection front, I worked hard to elect SOS Deborah Bowen and to make sure she stayed in office to enforce her ban on most touch screen machines. In the labor movement, I organized with Cesar Chavez and became active in my own union: United Teachers of Los Angeles.

I support clean money, both in word and in deed. I am not taking a dime of corporate
contributions because I am the People’s Candidate for the People’s House.

My opponent is smart and tough. Unfortunately, she has used her strengths in the service of:
• big banks and military contractors;

• supporting a bankruptcy bill that makes it easier for banks to hike your credit card rates, punish you for medical bankruptcy, and foreclose on your home;

• voting to deny you affordable generic medications for breast and brain cancer, HIV, and Parkinson’s disease;

• defying a majority of House Democrats to take us to war in Iraq, then escalate in Afghanistan;

• working to re-elect George Bush by pressuring the New York Times to suppress the story of Bush’s massive illegal wiretapping program;

• finally, becoming the subject of an FBI investigation after being caught in an NSA wiretap allegedly offering to use her influence on the House Intelligence Committee to get spying charges dropped against AIPAC analysts – this in return for their reported promise to defund House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the Democratic Party if Pelosi did not make her chair of the House Intelligence Committee.


I am not in the pocket of any lobby group-- and am deeply committed to the pursuit of peace with justice in the middle east.

It’s time for a change-- and a commitment at home to transforming our war economy into a new Green economy. We need a Green New Deal along the lines of the Works Progress Administration. Together, we can put Americans back to work repairing our infrastructure, strengthening our public school system, developing new energy, and building mass transit.

Enough of perpetual wars and occupations that create greater instability and rob our treasury of trillions needed for health care, education, and housing.

The ILWU Southern California District Council, University of California AFT, Mexican American Bar Association, Progressive Democrats of American, and the Armenian National Committee are among my endorsers.

I ask all delegates and grassroots activists to help me challenge Jane Harman to a floor fight at the California Democratic Party convention. Thus far, my opponent has refused to debate me, but rumor has it she will make a rare appearance at the annual convention.

I look forward to the challenge-- and to the moment on the floor when delegates will have an opportunity to stand tall.

Thank you,

Marcy Winograd
36th Congressional District Candidate

I don't know what the delegates will decide tonight, but I do know what progressive activists must do to elect the most outstanding candidate running for election to the House of Representatives this year. Blue America has Marcy on our main endorsement page, on our Sending Democrats A Message page and on our page dedicated to fighting against the Blue Dogs. Can I ask you to pick one and contribute what you feel comfortable giving, even if only $5 or $10? Like I said, Harman is the wealthiest Democrat in the House, and she will spend whatever she thinks she has to to hold onto her power base. Marcy could never match her-- but she doesn't need to. All she needs to do is get enough grassroots contributions so that she can get her message out to the people of the 36th District.

Labels: , ,


At 9:08 PM, Anonymous Alan8 said...

I've contributed twice to Marcy Winograd's campaign, which is unusual; I've never contributed for a primary, let alone a primary in another state.

But the difference between these candidates is so stark, I had to help Winograd, who is one of the few real Democrats left in the Democratic Party.

At the same time, my contributions to Winograd were opposing evil, in the form of her opponent, a corrupt, corporatist, Democrat-In-Name-Only that has consistently sold out her constituency to the interests of the wealthy.

Winograd's opponent is the kind of sleazy "Democrat" that made me leave for the Green Party. Maybe after these polyps are purged from the Democratic Party, it will morph back into a party worth supporting.

At 3:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm sure that Marcy will defeat J.H. in the primary. But if I'm wrong... there's still hope for Marcy and with Marcy. See Blessings in solidarity, Marcelle Cendrars and Lisa Massaciuccoli at and 831-688-8038 in Aptos, CA.


Post a Comment

<< Home