Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Meet Danielle Adams, A Progressive Champion Running In North Carolina


Howard Coble first won his North Carolina congressional seat in 1984, narrowly beating a freshman Democrat by riding Ronald Reagan's formidable coattails. The rematch in '86 was even tighter but Coble won, 72,329 to 72,250... 79 votes! Coble, a pretty mainstream conservative has never had a close call again. The longest-serving congressmember in North Carolina history, no opponent has ever reached 40% against him. But he's 84, not well and in and out of hospitals for the last 4 years-- most recently last month. There's been lots of speculation about Coble retiring, but he's popular enough in the folksy, mostly rural 6th district-- which includes Mt. Airy, Andy Griffith's hometown and the model for Mayberry-- so that he can die in office if that's what he wants. Despite that, two crazed Tea Party extremists, religionist loon Bradley Walker and financial consultant Don Webb, have both started nasty primary fights against him. Neither has a snowball's chance in hell. The Republican Establishment already has it's candidate lined up if Coble should, for any reason, not run in 2014: Phil Berger, Jr., son of Phil Berger, the president pro tem of the state Senate, one of the masterminds behind the extreme anti-democracy jihad that has driven down the approval ratings of the North Carolina legislature to historic lows. Junior is the district attorney of Rockingham County and the district was recently gerrymandered with the object of Junior succeeding Coble.

Democrats don't quite see it that way. The DC Beltway crowd dug up some non-partisan type hack who doesn't stand for anything beyond mom and apple pie, Laura Fjeld. The DCCC recruited her, despite the fact that she has no record whatsoever in any kind of civic engagement on any level. But the good news is that there is also a young progressive woman running, Danielle Adams, who was elected Durham County Soil & Water District Supervisor and is very popular with that same agricultural base that has been so loyal to Coble.

We know Danielle because she is a mentor at People for the American Way's Young Elected Officials Network and she is often talked about as one North Carolina's great young hopes. Fjeld's Republican-lite strategy isn't going to win a race against a real Republican. Danielle's record of civic engagement and her down-to-eath populism is the only shot Democrats have to win this very tough R+10 district. (While Obama was winning statewide against McCain, the 6th only gave him 43% of it's vote.)

"We have a serious representation problem in North Carolina," Danielle told me this morning. "This is a state that hasn't seen the election of a woman of color to Congress in 20 years, a state lacking in progressive female representation at the national level and a lack of young progressive leadership at the state and national level... in a state that prides itself on higher education and young entrepreneurship. These are signs of politics as usual and a lack of true representative government, these are signs that there needs to be a change.

"I grew up in a North Carolina where I believed wholeheartedly in our motto that this was the land where the weak grow strong and the strong grow great, that my opportunities were as limitless as our crisp blue skies and that the biggest fight that you'd ever get into other than Duke vs. UNC vs. NC State was whether or not Eastern BBQ is better than Western BBQ. I grew up believing that if I worked hard, did well in school, stayed out of trouble and stayed true to my family and faith that I could graduate from the college of my choice, get a good job, settle down, buy a house, start a family, and retire securely. That North Carolina, the one I grew up in no longer exists. That North Carolina doesn't exist for too many of the residents of the 6th district and that means the American Dream is gone. I believe that dream is worth fighting for and it is time for a new generation of leadership to come in and move us forward."

And suddenly she was on fire. "We are more than what divides us. We are a district of strong communities that need to be united together to solve problems, not divided. We are more than black and white, rural or urban, rich and poor, young and old, farmer and banker, haves and have nots, gay or straight... and we are certainly more than Democrats and Republicans. We are communities are friends, families, and neighborhoods that are just as diverse as our nation is. In that we deserve leadership that fights for the common good, which is why I'm running-- to unite everyone and provide a voice for all communities in the 6th district. This district deserves representation that fights for a full realized Farm Bill that includes SNAP funding for under privileged communities. Access to fresh and healthy foods is the right of not only families in rural communities but families that live in urban centers. Access to clean drinking water is also a right, not an issue that should be skirted over or delayed. Representation committed to ensuring access to these basic fundamental rights is lacking in North Carolina and in Washington and it is time for that to change.

"This is a district of diverse communities that deserves the representation for all, not the representation of some. Being a young, African American female who has close to $50,000 in student loan debt, is under employed for my level of education, is uninsured, a renter, and losing sight on the American promise, I believe I am uniquely capable of providing a multitude of perspectives that are truly representative of the people who live in my community and neighboring ones.

"We are tired of elected leaders putting personal gain and personal politics over the people they are sworn to serve. This district expects more and deserves more than the same old pay to play politics that is rampant in Washington."

Sounds good? Even though she's from a different political party, she'd be an amazing successor to Howard Coble, one who would bring honor, esteem hardwork and incredible energy to a district that often gets lost in the shuffle. If you'd like to give her a hand, she's the most recent addition to the Blue America page.

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At 8:33 PM, Blogger TrueBlue Dem said...

After doing the research I noticed that Laura Fjeld, just became a Democrat in 2012


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