DFA in the News

DFA in the News

EMILY's List backs Dana Balter for Congress against Rep. John Katko

Citizen

But with the primary settled and the focus shifting to the general election, the national group is throwing its support behind Balter, who has already been endorsed by the Indivisible movement, Democracy for America and several other progressive organizations. 

"I am proud to partner with EMILY's List to help create a government that benefits fully from the productive leadership of women," Balter said in a statement. "In Congress, I will continue to fight for women's equality and autonomy, including access to the full range of quality, affordable health care." 

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No, Minnesota Democrats did not choose 'boring, conventional, and white' in the primary

MinnPost

Tuesday’s biggest DFL rebuke of boring and conventional came in Minnesota’s Fifth Congressional District, where nearly half of the 130,000-some primary voters preferred state Rep. Ilhan Omar, the 36-year-old freshman legislator who earned international recognition in 2016 for becoming the first Somali woman elected to a legislature in the U.S.

Nationally, left-wing groups hailed primary victories — in particular, Omar’s — as the sign of a new wave of progressive leaders. Jim Dean, the chair of Democracy for America, said Omar will be a “transformative, inclusive populist leader in Congress.”

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EMILY’s List Latest to Back Katko Challenger

Roll Call

“Dana knows firsthand how important access to affordable, quality health care is, and her own experience facing the fear and uncertainty that can come from having a preexisting condition led Dana to want to make sure others don't have to face the same concerns,” Schriock said in a statement. Balter supports establishing a Medicare-for-all system, a single-payer program that would eliminate the need for private health insurance.

EMILY’s List’s endorsement follows the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee’s decision earlier this month to add Balter to its Red to Blue program. The initiative supports Democratic challengers in races against Republican incumbents. Balter has also been endorsed by the Indivisible movement, Democracy for America and several other progressive organizations. 

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Leah Vukmir slams Tammy Baldwin for 'far left' support of Sanders' agenda

Washington Times

“Tammy Baldwin isn’t taking a risk by supporting Medicare for All, she’s putting forward an actual solution to the challenges of the current health care system,” said Neil Stroka, spokesman for Democracy for America, a liberal political action committee that endorsed her. “And Republicans seem to be out of any relevant ideas. Sad!”

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DFA Backs Pam Keith in Florida's 18th Congressional District Primary

Pharmacy Choice

Today, Democracy for America (DFA) endorsed Pam Keith in her race to represent Florida's 18th Congressional District. Democracy for America has 79,997 members in Florida including 3,486 members in Florida's 18th Congressional District alone.

DFA Chair Jim Dean on the grassroots progressive organization's decision to back Pam Keith in her battle to represent the FL-18 in Congress: "Democracy for America is excited to endorse Pam Keith's campaign for Congress because she's running the kind of inspiring and energizing grassroots campaign Democrats need to win a lasting majority in the U.S. House this fall.

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Reaction as voters set general election matches: Walker v. Evers, Baldwin v. Vukmir, Steil v. Bryce

Wisconsin Gazette

The progressive group Democracy for America cheered the Barnes' primary win.

Here's the statement from chair Jim Dean: "Mandela Barnes already has a strong record of leading the fight for progressive economic policy, criminal justice reform and health care, both in the state Assembly and as the national director of a coalition for state legislators nationwide, and tonight's victory makes him one step closer to leading the fight for inclusive populist political change across Wisconsin as its next lieutenant governor.

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Illinois Playbook

Politico

Lori Lightfoot just got endorsed by the Chicago South Side Democracy for America organization. “We share a vision for empowering our communities to fight for reform and a commitment to building a more inclusive government,” the mayoral challenger said in a statement. “I’m excited to join with South Side DFA and other progressives across the city to grow our grassroots movement.”

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Progressives fume as Dems meet with Brett Kavanaugh

The Hill

With only 49 members, the Senate Democratic Conference can’t block Trump’s pick on their own. But progressives want the caucus to launch a full-scale attack to try to sink or at least damage Kavanaugh, who, if confirmed, will help shape court decisions for decades.

“I think there’s been broad concern that Democrats haven’t been as united and as crystal clear as they need to be,” said Neil Sroka, a spokesman for Democracy for America. “It’s pretty concerning that we haven’t gotten … unanimity from the caucus.”  

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'Iron Stache' Randy Bryce wins Democratic primary in Paul Ryan's district

Washington Times

“Randy Bryce’s campaign inspired hundreds of thousands across the country, scared Paul Ryan out of running for re-election, and his victory in today’s primary is a testament to the strength of people power in 2018,” said Jim Dean, chair of Democracy for America. “A champion for Medicare for All with a demonstrated commitment to standing up in the fight for racial and economic justice, Randy Bryce is more than ready to defeat Paul Ryan’s mini-me in November.”

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Ilhan Omar could become first Somali-American in Congress after primary win

CNN

With the support from the Justice Democrats, the same progressive group that helped bring Ocasio-Cortez into the arena in New York, Omar campaigned on a platform including support for "Medicare for all," abolishing ICE, tuition-free college and raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour. She was also endorsed by Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton and liberal groups like MoveOn and Democracy for America.

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How Activists Ousted St. Louis County’s Notorious Top Prosecutor Bob McCulloch

Huffington Post

A determined group of young and black grassroots activists threw their weight behind Bell’s candidacy. Action St. Louis, Organization for Black Struggle, Missouri Faith Voices and Indivisible St. Louis worked to mobilize the black community, and others across the county, to come out and vote for Bell. They were joined by a coalition of well-resourced national organizations committed to reforming the criminal justice system ― the American Civil Liberties Union, Democracy for America, MoveOn and influential political action committees, including Real Justice and Color of Change, both of which endorsed Bell.

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Democracy for America Endorses Jahana Hayes Connecticut's 5th Congressional District

Targeted News Service

Today, Democracy for America (DFA) endorsed Jahana Hayes in her fight to represent Connecticut's 5th Congressional District. Democracy for America has 16,594 members in Connecticut including 3,640 members in Connecticut's 5th Congressional District alone.

DFA Chair Jim Dean on the grassroots progressive organization's decision to back Jahana Hayes in her race for Congress in the CT-5: "An award-winning teacher with deep ties to her community, Jahana Hayes is not only poised to make history as the first Black Democrat to represent Connecticut in Congress, she's ready to be an unrelenting champion for economic and social justice in Washington."

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District Attorney Candidate Patalano Announces Safe Street Plan

Framingham Source

A former defense attorney and past chair of the Board of Bar Overseers, Patalano left her most recent position as a prosecutor and the Chief of Professional Integrity & Ethics in the Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office in November. She has been endorsed by former Attorney General and Middlesex District Attorney Scott Harshbarger, Democracy for America, the Progressive Democrats of Lowell, Progressive Massachusetts, Our Revolution Massachusetts, UWUA Local 369, Adam Foss, Wakefield Councilors Mehreen Butt and Julie Smith-Galvin, Cambridge City Councilor Sumbul Siddiqui, Watertown Councilor-At-Large Caroline Bays, Somerville Aldermen-At-Large Stephanie Hirsch and Wil Mbah, Somerville Aldermen Matt McLaughlin, J.T. Scott, Ben Ewen-Campen, Jesse Clingan, and Mark Niedergang, Somerville School Committee member Andre Green, and Waltham City Council Vice Chair Robert Logan.

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Progressive Massachusetts Endorses Pressley for Congress

Charlestown Patriot-Bridge

“I am proud to have earned the endorsement of Progressive Massachusetts,” said Pressley. “Since their founding, Progressive Massachusetts and their member chapters have been on the front lines, fighting for progressive values across our Commonwealth. They have been dedicated to reducing inequality across Massachusetts, and I look forward to continuing to partner with them to combat the persistent disparities across the 7th District.”

Progressive Massachusetts joins a number of other grassroots progressive organizations in supporting Ayanna’s campaign, including Democracy for America, Indivisible, and Justice Democrats, which have all previously announced their support for the campaign.

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Prosecutor in Michael Brown Case Loses

Afro-American Newspapers

Bell’s victory may have come as a shock to some, but he defeated the incumbent by more than 13 points. His victory in the primary all but guarantees him the position, as there was no Republican candidate in the race.

He had gained a large amount of support from progressive Democrats, including influential endorsements from multiple political action committees concerned with social justice such as Real Justice, activist Shaun King’s organization, Democracy for America and Color of Change.

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Wesley Bell's Win Surprised Everyone — Except His Campaign

Riverfront Times

Local activist groups took up Bell's mission, too, among them the Organization for Black Struggle, Action STL, Ferguson 1000, Mobilize Missouri and Indivisible St. Louis. National groups, including Democracy For America, MoveOn, Color of Change and Real Justice, threw their weight behind Bell as part of their push to reform prosecutor's offices across the county.

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Rashida Tlaib Is Running for Congress on a Mission to Expand Civil Rights Protections

The Nation

The newly-nominated contender will have allies, on Capitol Hill and on the streets. Tlaib was backed in her primary run—against a crowded group of able contenders—by major unions such as the Michigan Education Association and activist groups such as Justice Democrats, Democracy for America, Greater Detroit Democratic Socialists of America and the Progressive Change Campaign Committee, among others. Congressional Progressive Caucus leaders such as Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal, D-Washington, and Congressman Ro Khanna, D-California, backed her candidacy, as did Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a fellow democratic socialist who is expected to be elected to Congress this fall from a New York City U.S. House district.

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Rashida Tlaib of Michigan Just Set Course to Become the First Muslim Woman in Congress

Yahoo! News

Running on a platform that touted the establishment of a $15 minimum wage; supporting unions; preventing cuts to social security, Medicare, and Medicaid; debt-free college and vocational training; and gender equality pay, Tlaib’s grassroots campaign raised more than $1 million dollars, according to The Detroit News. She was also highly endorsed by documentarian Michael Mooreand newly-elected Democratic primary winner Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

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Six things about Rashida Tlaib, who will likely become first Muslim woman in Congress

USA Today

Tlaib is from the progressive wing of the Democratic Party, whose leaders in Congress include Sens. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., and Kamala Harris, D-Calif.

Among the progressive groups that endorsed her: Democracy for America, People for Bernie, Our Revolution, the Progressive Change Campaign Committee, and the Greater Detroit Democratic Socialists of America.

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Democracy For America's Neil Sroka expects good things in 2018 & it was evident last night

Daily Kos

The 2018 election is around the corner and DFA's Neil Sroka expect the Progressive candidates they've endorsed to do very well. "We've got some amazing candidates running for office," Neil Sroka said. "We are going to be supporting over 250 candidates throughout the country this year. And those are folks running from the tippy top of the ballot for U.S. Senate all the way down to county commissioner and water board member. There is so much to be excited about."

Sroka pointed out that Democrats are likely to do very well in the gubernatorial races given the great Democratic candidates that are running. He specifically called out Stacey Abrams who turned the Democratic playbook on its head. She is running for Governor of Georgia. Instead of appeasing the establishment with moderation, she decided on expanding the base by attracting and ensuring that the real Progressive majority votes.

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Pro-Choice Democrat Wins Kansas Gubernatorial Primary

Rewire.News

Democracy For America (DFA) supported Thompson in the 2017 special election race and continues to back him as he prepares to challenge Estes in November.

“James Thompson’s shockingly strong showing in his 2017 special election was one of the very first signs that a progressive tsunami was possible in 2018,” DFA Chair Jim Dean said in a statement. “Democracy for America members were honored to stand with James Thompson in 2017, we were thrilled to stand with him once again in today’s primary, and we can’t wait to battle alongside him for critical inclusive populist priorities like Medicare for All, a $15 minimum wage, and criminal justice reform through November and beyond.”

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Overcoming 'Decades of Corruption and Systemic Racism,' Reformer Wesley Bell Ousts Prosecutor Who Let Michael Brown's Killer Off the Hook

Common Dreams

In a statement applauding Bell's upset win, Democracy for America chair Jim Dean said his success "shows us that voters are hungry for prosecutors who understand the structural racism that undergirds our criminal justice system and are committed to delivering on reforms that can fundamentally alter it."

"We can't fundamentally reform our criminal justice system if we don't change our criminal prosecutors, and that's exactly what St. Louis County is poised to do," Dean concluded.

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Elizabeth Warren is the left’s early favorite for 2020

Vox

“There’s not any other candidate I think, other than Bernie Sanders, that has the standing within the grassroots base of the party the way Elizabeth Warren does,” said Neil Sroka, the communications director for Democracy for America, a progressive PAC founded by former Democratic National Committee chair Howard Dean. “She has a national profile and, especially among grassroots progressives, has a reputation as a fighter and truth teller that goes on for almost a decade at this point.”

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Democratic rift: Grassroots liberals rally around identity politics in midterm campaigns

Washington Times

The liberal push to remake the Democratic Party into a more progressive and diverse political organization will be tested this week in Michigan, where a coalition of grassroots groups has unified behind Abdul El-Sayed’s underdog quest to become the nation’s first Muslim governor.

Mr. El-Sayed is hoping to follow in the footsteps of Stacey Abrams, who became the first black female nominee for governor in Georgia, and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who is well-positioned to become the first Hispanic to represent the 14th Congressional District in New York after stunning the political world with a victory over Rep. Joseph Crowley. “Everyone in the progressive grassroots is lined up behind Abdul,” said Neil Sroka, spokesman for Democracy for America.

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Early polls favor Biden but Senate officials skeptical

The Hill

“He’s basically a Democratic placeholder that has universal name recognition and is kind of stand-in for people. When they think Biden, they think Obama,” said Neil Sroka, communications director for Democracy for America, a nationwide liberal grassroots activist organization.

“The next Democratic nominee and I believe the next president is going to be an inclusive populist champion. Period. Bar none,” he said. “The idea that you’re going to run in 2020 on a neo-centrist agenda is beyond ludicrous, especially in a big dynamic Democratic primary.”

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Can the Ocasio-Cortez Playbook Work in the Heartland? Cori Bush Is Trying

New York Times

She got a shout-out recently on “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.” On Wednesday, she secured an endorsement from the progressive group Democracy for America. Nina Turner, head of the Bernie Sanders-aligned advocacy group Our Revolution, campaigned with Bush this weekend. Even those who back Bush expect many voters, and older black voters in particular, to support Clay. That has prompted Bush at times to tailor her message to a younger audience. When she filmed a radio ad last week, she had the producer underlay it with Cardi B’s “I Like It,” in part because she and her advisers thought it would help her appeal to young voters.

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Democrats’ 2020 presidential fight gets an early dress rehearsal

Politico

Jim Dean, chairman of Democracy for America, predicted the candidate field could remain unsettled not only until after the November elections, but after state and local elections next year as well.

“This is definitely one of those times when we’re going to know a lot more after inflection points, and not before,” Dean said. “I don’t think we’ve heard the last of this field.”

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Abdul El-Sayed for Governor of Michigan

The Nation

This is a big-ideas campaign with bold ambitions that has attracted support from Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders and New York congressional candidate Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Democracy for America, Our Revolution, the Progressive Change Campaign Committee, Justice Democrats, 350 Action, and the Michigan Nurses Association. Yet, El-Sayed’s embrace of grassroots democracy is what truly distinguishes his bid. He has traveled to every corner of the state and reached out to every urban and rural community with a message of unity that places its faith in voters to make him America’s first Muslim governor.

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Will Justice Ever Come to Ferguson, Missouri? A Q&A with Wesley Bell

The Nation

A former public defender, Bell has cast himself as a reform candidate, the progressive alternative to a deeply troubled status quo. His platform includes ending cash bail for nonviolent offenses, the death penalty, and mass incarceration and has earned him the support of influential groups like Color of Change, Democracy for America, and Shaun King’s Real Justice PAC. As King explained in an official endorsement statement. “In Ferguson, Wesley Bell emerged as a strong leader in the fight to transform our justice system.… As the St. Louis County Prosecutor, we can count on Wesley to expand this kind of critical reform work county-wide.”

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Democracy For America Progressive Group Backs Cori Bush For MO-1

Missouri Patch

Democracy for America, a progressive political action committee founded by former Democratic National Committee chair and 2004 presidential candidate Howard Dean, has endorsed Cori Bush for Congress in Missouri's first district.

Bush is challenging Rep. William Lacy Clay, an 18-year incumbent in the state's primary elections next Tuesday.

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