If you are looking to help progressives move on to November and champion universal single-payer healthcare, oppose war, raise the minimum wage, challenge the concentration of wealth, oppose the privatization of public institutions, and campaign on the robust progressive agenda, these are some folks to support:
I am proud and confident to publicly announce my endorsement of Delaine Eastin for Governor of California in the June 5th, 2018 Statewide Primary Election. After hearing her speak at Democratic Alliance for Action of Santa Clarita – DAA, she is the most experienced, capable, and Qualified person running for Governor. She spoke knowledgeably, powerfully, from experience, with charisma, and progressively on every important issue. As a Council Woman in Union City she addressed housing and public safety; as an Assembly Woman she addressed the environment through legislation on landfills and recycling and recognizes we need to do a lot more to address the looming climate emergency; as Superintendent of Education she addressed immigration by making sure all children have access to public education and is the person with the most knowledge and experience in improving public education; as a Candidate, she is not taking corporate money, has been fire on the campaign trail, and is unafraid to challenge politics as usual. I am proud to vote for a strong, capable, experienced Woman for Governor of California. By the way, it is a top-two primary and we will see who makes the run-off. I am wholeheartedly opposed to Antonio Villaraigosa and the billionaires supporting a neoliberal agenda through his campaign. I am unsure about Gavin Newsome and his too slick political positioning and presentation. John Chiang has positioned himself towards the center. The two major Republicans in the race don’t represent my beliefs, and the rest of the field is compromised of 21 interesting people who may be running for the right reasons but don’t have the background, experience, capacity, campaign, or steel-trap mind that Delaine has. Even though this endorsement comes late, and as a candidate myself I hesitated getting involved with other campaigns, especially long-shots. But now is the time for a politics of love and courage. She would be the first female Governor in California history and who better to lead us than a progressive woman with a brass backbone.
Delaine Eastin for Governor 2018!
For Attorney General, I am voting for Dave Jones. I have had the honor of meeting Dave a few times, hearing him speak a few more, and appreciate his track record of work on behalf of the public. Dave Jones has a true understanding of what is right and wrong and used his previous elected position to put corrupt politicians in jail. He says he will investigate the murders of people at the hands of the police, uses Michelle Alexander’s work as a benchmark, and is hustling to win votes. Dave is not taking money from insurance companies, the tobacco industry, big oil, or charter schools while his opponent does. The Attorney General is someone who can bring justice, but neither Jerry Brown nor Kamala Harris were as fierce as they could have been when it came to defending people’s homes against Steve Mnuchin and other criminals in suits with good lawyers — Xavier Becerra has been a continuation of that. I strongly encourage you to vote for Dave Jones.
Tony Thurmond for State Superintendent of Instruction is my clear choice, and his speech at the California Democratic Party Convention shows why. His campaign has asked folks to share his videos (“Gateway” & “Leading California’s Fight”), and I encourage you do to the same. The race for State Superintendent of Public Instruction has become another proxy-battle between the billionaire neoliberal forces for charter schools and the over-matched amalgamation of organized public school teachers. At stake is the future of public education in the State of California and the minds of millions of students for 180 school days every year. Tony Thurmond’s specific legislative accomplishments as an Assembly Member clearly demonstrate how he was worked with all members of the school community to utilize government resources to improve the learning environment for students and work conditions for school site staff. Even though Superintendent is technically non-partisan, Tony has the support of the State Democratic Party and is the only candidate capable of beating Marshall Tuck. The complicated nature of government and bureaucracy is exemplified by the 130+ boards, commissions, advisory committees, and associations represented by the California Department of Education and appointments of the Superintendent. From Betsy DeVos to Austin Beutner, we know that there are many important positions in the infrastructure of public education that are appointed, not elected. Tony will appoint folks who give their their heart and soul to help students, he won’t appoint people who prioritize profits. Additionally, Tony grew up poor, worked hard in school, and has a genuine understanding of the transformational power of education. Tony Thurmond is the best candidate for Superintendent of Public Instruction.
Jess Phoenix in Congressional District 25 (Simi Valley, Santa Clarita, Lancaster, Palmdale, Antelope Valley) represents a new kind of politics and leadership. A volcano scientist running to replace the science denying Steve Knight, Jess has unequivocally championed key progressive issues like universal single-payer healthcare, ending wars, and addressing the looming climate emergency through renewable energy and ending the profit motivated dependence on fossil fuels by bringing truth and facts to Congress.
In Orange County we have the chance to take Congressional seats away from bad Republicans and replace them with progressives. Andy Thorburn in Congressional District 39 and Harley Rouda in Congressional District 48.
In Congressional District 30, I am supporting Jon Pelzer. He is a good person who has stepped up his involvement after realizing any blue won’t do. With an incumbent representative who has too often supported war, hasn’t been able to bring any major federal resources to constituents, was a quiet representative while our District’s space shuttle program was gutted, and the overall need for change — Jon Pelzer has my vote. In the top-two primary, in a field of 4 candidates (3 Democrats and 1 Republican), I am hoping Jon makes it to November and we can really differentiate what a corporate free Progressive Democrat represents compared to the Democratic Party’s business as usual.
And finally, in the race for U.S. Senate, there is a crowded field challenging the weak and aging incumbency. Being a pragmatic progressive, recognizing times are changing, and there is a real chance to unseat one of the most powerful establishment Democrats in the country, I am opposing Diane Feinstein. Along with Kevin de León, I have nothing but respect for Pat Harris, Alison Hartson, and Dave Hildebrand — all claiming to be progressive candidates who are engaging voters, presenting people with options, talking about the issues that matter, and presenting progressive policy solutions. The top-two dynamic may allow a bad Republican onto the November ballot. There are criticisms of Kevin de León for not being progressive enough and for accepting corporate money, but we could have someone who helped pass single-payer healthcare in the California State Senate in the United States Senate. In a crowded field, with a recent poll showing over 30% of voters undecided, we have the chance to unseat the pro-war Democratic incumbency.
We often focus on the small part of the struggle that most resonates with us. Sometimes it is a campaign for a specific piece of legislation on an issue important to us, sometimes we get on board with a campaign because we meet someone who draws us in. For me, it has been a complicated combination of forces that has lead me down this political path.
We may feel that our endorsement doesn’t matter, but speaking to your friends and family makes a difference. In fact, to your friends and family, your thoughtful passionate endorsement probably means more than that of an elected official who doesn’t have a personal relationship. Your friends and family trust you more than an elected official, a paid canvasser, a campaign volunteer, and definitely more than any piece of mail or television commercial.
A major part of how we beat the influence of money in our electoral system is by raising our own ability to influence votes within our circle of friends, family, co-workers, and neighbors.
There is so much on the ballot this Tuesday, I encourage you to take a look at the endorsements made by Americans for Democratic Action, Southern California where you can find some information on judges, propositions, and some other races.
Don’t hesitate to ask me directly about a particular race, I may have an opinion or be able to direct you to someone who lives in the District and has talked to the candidates.