Tuesday, June 3, 2014

When Candidates Speak Liberal, Even If They Lose, Progressives Win

Digby explains why:

It's nice to see my concerns addressed. Many of the other candidates are also running ads that speak to the issues in a progressive way. And that, in turn, reinforces those ideas. It's a feedback loop. This is why it's important to support candidates who want to speak in these terms even when they are not going to win. Campaigns are educational opportunities as much as anything and if people never hear a candidate express liberal views or espouse a progressive agenda they have much less chance of ever knowing about them or feeling compelled to leave their house and go to the polls. It may not pay off in the short run, but over the long haul some people's minds may even be changed by it.

The Democratic Party's job is to elect Democrats, period. But the progressive movement has a different goal. They often intersect as they will here in California's 33rd. I'm sure the Party will welcome whichever Democrat wins (and if it's Independent marianne Williamson, I'm sure they'll welcome her too.) But where there is a progressive in a race against a party backed centrist or conservative, progressives have no obligation to back them over someone who hews more closely to their beliefs in primaries, even if the centrist or conservative has a better chance of winning, for all the reasons I just set forth. Unfortunately, for some reason, there are a lot of Democrats who become livid at the idea of anyone running for office in a conservative district who they believe is not "serious" because they espouse the very beliefs that virtually every candidate in my district are running on. It's as if such ideas are never even to be spoken of outside liberals enclaves on the coasts.

I feel just terrible that this makes some people uncomfortable (not), but the truth is that progressive ideas deserve a hearing every place in this country. There are people who believe as I believe all across the nation in all 50 states and while they may not be a majority who can win their district, they have a right to have their voices heard and perhaps persuade a few of their neighbors that the centrist, moderate or right wing worldview are not the only ways to look at the world. Who knows, maybe some day one of these liberal cranks will actually win a seat because of the groundwork that was laid by a few people who decided to run for office so they could talk about progressive ideas.
We've got one such courageous candidate right here in Kentucky.

Down With Tyranny:
There's a debate raging among progressives about Bernie Sanders running for president. [Blue America is encouraging him to run.] Most progressives-- or at least the ones I talk to-- think he should run. Some want him to run, as he has for his entire career, as an Independent. He would be on the ballot as an alternative to the two corporate shills the Republicans and the Democrats put up. Others want him to run in the primary as a Democrat-- something he has never done in his entire life-- so that he could debate Hillary Clinton on the issues she would rather not discuss, like economic inequality and corporate trade policies that have devastated the American middle class.

There's a similar dynamic playing out in Kentucky, where independent-minded progressive Democrat, Ed Marksberry has withdrawn from the Democratic primary-- when the Democratic Party elites and their Establishment stacked the deck unfairly against his long-shot bid-- and is now running as an independent against both horrible status quo, corporate-zombie candidates, Mitch McConnell ® and Alison Lundergan Grimes (D).

Ed is looking for some help to accelerate the collection of the 5,000 signatures he needs to get his name on the ballot. McConnell, a reviled underdog, is challenging Alison Lundergan Grimes to 3 debates and if Ed can get the signatures in time, he's likely to be able to join the debate(s). The issues he's talking about are not the issues either of the corporate candidates want to discuss.

"I know a lot of people," he told me this morning, "are asking why I decided to run as an Independent instead of just hanging in there and waiting for a better opportunity. The reason is simple; I found out that the establishment doesn't give a fuck about people like myself and it's not going to change. I'm okay with that and it feels pretty good being an Independent.

But I am worried about Climate Change and how backwards-ass our political leaders in Kentucky are and the strangle-hold King Coal has on them. This is an opportunity in the most the most watched US Senate race to take a chance to expose the truth about Climate Change."


I’m not running to win; I’m running to influence the conversation about Climate Change, because if the good folks of Kentucky aren’t exposed to the truth, they will never change their hearts about Coal and Climate Change.

You see, sometimes you have to go right at the root of the problem even if it’s not the most popular thing to do at the time. But time is something we no longer have. And I need your help.

To have my name on the ballot I have to collect 5000 signatures. I’m well on my way but the quicker we get all 5000 signature the faster my voice we be heard in the media.

I’m pleading to you to support my campaign with any donation you can spare. Our goal is just $5000.00 over the next week. These donations will be used only to help collect the 5000 signatures.

You can donate by going to my website or clicking on the following link.


As much as  I think Ed Marksberry would make a far, far better U.S. Senator than Alison Lundergan Grimes, I am not going to vote for him in November.  Nor will I encourage anyone else to do so.  But if you care about liberal policy and the future of the country, I urge you to contribute to Ed's campaign so that he can hold Grimes accountable for her repug views and promote progressive values in Kentucky.

No comments: