Saturday, May 10, 2014

Why The L.A. Times Endorsed Lee Rogers Instead Of One Of The Two Right-Wing Republicans


The L.A. Times is a Republican-owned newspaper and-- in a heavily Democratic city-- they tend to bend editorially towards as conservative a direction as they can get away with. In CA-33, for instance, they backed the more plausible of the two conservative Democrats-- Matt Miller over the discredited, sleazy and thoroughly disliked Wendy Greuel-- while ignoring the progressives in the race, Ted Lieu and Marianne Williamson.

So far, the only other congressional race they endorsed in is for the CA-25 seat being abandoned by arch-reactionary bigot Buck McKeon. The jungle primary boils down to a progressive Democrat, Lee Rogers, and ftwo very hard right Sacramento politicians, carpetbagger Tony Strickland, the Republican Party Establishment pick who has been endorsed by McKeon, and Steve Knight, more of a Tea Party-brand extremist endorsed by local Republicans who are disenchanted with McKeon's grotesquely corrupt machine (of which Strickland is a willing cog).

The Times' endorsement of Rogers, emphasized the unsuitable nature of the two right-wing ideologues the GOP is running in the moderate suburban area. Either would be more appropriate for some rule district in Mississippi or Texas than for the Santa Clarita, Antelope Valley area.

"But both Strickland and Knight," the Times editors wrote, "espouse Republican positions that this page has long opposed: They want to repeal the Affordable Care Act, don't want to raise the federal minimum wage and want undocumented immigrants to leave the country.

"That's why we prefer Lee Rogers, a doctor and moderate Democrat from Simi Valley."

Rogers' strategy for his session with the Times editorial board was smart-- and it paid off big time. He brought the Times' own editorials with him of all their positions that corresponded to the issues being discussed in the campaign-- like the Affordable Care Act and immigration. He then showed them-- in writing-- his positions and the positions of his two lunatic fringe opponents. It seems to have done the trick.

I find it appropriate that the Times editors referred to Rogers as a "moderate Democrat." The word "moderate" in DC is used as a synonym for conservative, the opposite of progressive, but that's because Washington media types are lazy and stupid. "Moderate" is the opposite of "extreme," not the opposite of "progressive." Rogers' positions on issues and his vision for America are progressive. He wants to prevent his constituents from getting emphysema from the CEMEX mine McKeon ignored. That's progressive. His approach to the broken immigration system is comprehensive. That's progressive. He has vowed to help pass a minimum wage increase. That's progressive. He is committed to universal background checks for gun-buyers so that only law-abiding citizens have them, not criminals. That's progressive. His doctorly manner of speaking and his commitment to the facts… that of course is moderate.

And there was one other line in the L.A. Times editorial that was crucial: "His experience as a doctor and in dealing with health insurance companies has given him practical ideas on how to fix problems with the law and the healthcare system in general." That's right, he knows very well the parasitic scam that the insurance companies have become. He'll fight to right that wrong-- and you can call that progressive or conservative or moderate or extremist or whatever you want.

“These career Sacramento politicians don’t care about middle class families and bringing jobs to the district. They only care about one job-- their own,” said Rogers. “Former state Senator Tony Strickland is a political opportunist, jumping from race to race and district to district, whether he lives there or not. Senator Steve Knight was recently elected to the Senate, jumping from the Assembly, and now he’s already scouting another job-- with taxpayers on the hook for a special election should he leave the Senate before his term is up.”

“Sending career Sacramento politicians to Washington won’t solve anything. In contrast, I’m a doctor who solves real problems for a living. I will fight for hard working middle class families by concentrating on economic initiatives that help them most, like raising the federal minimum wage to $10.10 by 2016, protecting Social Security and Medicare, and opposing the GOP budget that gives millionaires a huge tax break, while charging middle class families about $2,000 more per year.”

If you'd like to help us make sure Rogers is elected instead of one of the two crackpots he's running against, you can contribute to his campaign here on the Blue America ActBlue page.

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