Thursday, April 13, 2017

Meet Marie Newman, The Brave Woman Taking On Entrenched Blue Dog Dan Lipinski In Chicago


When Dan Lipinski inherited his father's Southside Chicago district in 2004, he hadn't lived in Illinois in 15 years. He was a Tennessee conservative-- eventually he even voted for Tennessee Blue Dog Jim Cooer as Speaker instead of Nancy Pelosi-- but returned "home" to hold the family fiefdom. It's widely acknowledged that his corrupt father manipulated and subverted the Democratic process to get him into the seat. Lipinksi Sr was the most conservative Democrat in the Illinois delegation; Jr has proven to be even worse-- opposed to progressive health care... homophobic, anti-Choice, and with a disgraceful voting record that no representative from a solidly blue district should have.

Goal Thermometer Blue America has been hoping for a viable candidate against Lipinski every cycle since he started voting as a Republican. (And, by the way, ProgresdsivePunch rates him an "F" and so far this session his crcial vote score is 14.19. Only one "Democrat" has a lower score, wretched Arizona Blue Dog Krysten Sinema, who has also drawn a progressive primary opponent. Half a dozen Republicans have better voting records than Lipinski! As we mentioned last month, Marie Newman, a former Bernie activist, has decided to take up the unenviable task of primarying an entrenched incumbent. Judging how the Democratic establishment tried to destroy Donna Edwards, Matt Cartwright, Beto O'Rourke, Hilda Solis and Eric Swalwell when they primaried corrupt conservative incumbents, Marie is going to be in for a rough time. But helping end the disgusting mess that is Dan Lipinski's contemptible career is something worth getting behind. We have a new ActBlue page especially for progressive Democrats taking on reactionary incumbents from the Republican wing of the Democratic Party. I've invited Marie to introduce herself with the guest post below. If we liked what you read, please consider tapping on the thermometer on the right and contributing what you can.

Why I'm Running For Congress
-by Marie Newman

My name is Marie Newman and I’m running for Congress. I’ve never run for office before, even though I’ve been asked. I’m running this time because last November 8th-- Election Day-- the world changed. Things we’ve taken for granted-- women’s rights, human rights, the right to obtain healthcare-- have suddenly been called into question. The world as we knew it has been turned upside-down.

That’s why I participated in the Women’s March in January. I was one of 250,000 women, men and children who showed up in downtown Chicago. We were there to send a simple message: we refuse to be silent as our core values come under attack.

Afterwards, I started thinking about what I could do to turn my concern into meaningful action. The truth is that I’ve been deeply involved in my community for years. I was born in the Beverly neighborhood of Chicago and raised in suburban Palos Park. I graduated from Carl Sandburg High School and the University of Wisconsin. After years of working for the largest ad agency in the U.S., where I became a partner, I left to start a small consulting business in LaGrange, where I live with my husband Jim and our two kids.

While I was working and raising a family, I volunteered in organizations advocating for cancer research, small business and common-sense gun safety laws. I also worked in a number of local Democratic campaigns. And when one of my children was severely bullied in school, I started a local group to address the problem and eventually was appointed to a state task force.

I learned that many other moms and dads across the nation were working on this same challenge, but there was very little support available for families. So I helped establish a coalition of 70 non-profits and called Team Up to Stop Bullying. We advocated at the state and federal legislators to do something about the problem, which has hurt too many families and cost too many young lives. Eventually, I wrote a book about what I had learned and offered strategies to bring changes-- a book that, I’m proud to say, is now used by school districts across the nation.

I was no expert when I started. What I soon learned, however, is that one person can make a difference-- but only if she is joined and supported by hundreds of others. Right now, our common cause is to take back our government from Trump and his supporters in Congress who want to turn back the clock on our progress. As part of my exploratory campaign, I participated in 55 coffees, town meetings and other gatherings where I heard first-hand from residents of Illinois’ Third Congressional District. And my priorities for Congress and our country reflect theirs:

My Priorities

First, we must fight to protect and extend health care for all Americans. I believe the best way to do that is through phased-in approach to include some of the key proposals out there currently such as the Medicare for All initiative, introduced by Congressman Conyers and Senator Sanders. Until we have a President and Congress that will pass such a measure, we must fight to protect the Affordable Care Act from repeal. This includes retaining the elements of that law focused on women’s healthcare and reproductive rights, protecting Planned Parenthood and the millions of women it serves, and requiring insurance companies to cover those with pre-existing conditions.

Not only is my opponent the only Democrat from Illinois to vote against establishing the Affordable Care Act; he has voted repeatedly with the Republican majority to defund Planned Parenthood. This is an unacceptable assault on the rights and health needs of millions of women across our country.

Second, we need to put the needs and concerns of small businesses ahead of the big corporations who use their campaign money and lobbyists to turn the tax code to their advantage. It is our small businesses that create most of the new jobs in our country and that make up the majority of the businesses in the 3rd Congressional District.

In any restructuring of our tax code, we need to close the loopholes and special privileges that enable the wealthiest corporations to avoid their fair share of the tax burden and use some of those resources to help small businesses and entrepreneurs. We must also reverse the Citizens United decision, which has given a handful of right-wing billionaires a hugely disproportionate role in our elections and government. I believe every person’s voice and vote should matter the same.

My opponent takes three-quarters of his campaign money from Washington PACs and lobbyists, which is why he’s ignored the needs of small businesses without that kind of political clout. As a Member of Congress, I’ll reverse those misguided priorities and focus on promoting small business growth.

Third, too many students in our country are leaving college with huge debt but without employable skills. We should encourage the development of high school and college curriculums that actually lead to real jobs. For example, creating more cost-effective entry to community colleges and to create one and two year certifications with designated paths to well-paying jobs that will promote both job and community growth. This should apply to federally supported job retraining and career redirection programs, as well-- many of which could be administered through our community college system.

Finally, I’m eager to fight against discrimination due to race, religion, gender or sexuality-- because respect, appreciation and equal rights are American values that we hold dear. My opponent has voted consistently against gay marriage and has sponsored legislation that would enable businesses to discriminate against the LGBTQI community on “religious” grounds. And he shares Donald Trump’s aggression toward immigrants-- even though first- and second-generation immigrant families make up much of the 3rd District. We must rededicate ourselves to the basic, American principles of welcoming refugees and promoting a welcome environment for all.

I am excited by the grassroots energy and commitment of thousands of people across the 3rd District who believe with all their heart that it’s time to take a stand for our values and our future. I know that defeating an incumbent whose family has held this seat for 30 years is a very difficult assignment. But I also know the power of everyday people when they join together in a common cause because I’ve been a part of it many times before.

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At 3:14 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You're running on your own. Why taint yourself by being a democrap. Even if you're markedly better than Lipinski... you're still trying to join a club of odious greedy corrupt neoliberal neocon warmongering whores.

Run as an independent or a green. You'll still have Pelosi's millions against you. Won't make any diff.

At 3:39 PM, Blogger Anon said...

Ahh, the usual drivel from our anonymous troll.

Why not save us all time and just post Standard Whiny Reply #1 or Standard Whiny Reply #2?

We would know what you meant.

At 9:11 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The boilerplate, non-thinking, reflexive reply of the impatient lesser evilist.

or, #3, if you will. suck on it.

At 2:21 PM, Blogger gscj52 said...

Anonymous, now that you have tried to impress us with your name-calling vocabulary, why don't you write something of substance, backed by facts?


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