Saturday, May 22, 2021

Virginia Gubernational Democratic Primary

There's a democratic primary going on right now for the Virginia Governor. The republican primary has already happened.
It started April 28, and the final day of voting is June 8th. I think you can vote in person up until June 8th, but I'm fuzzy on the details.

The candidates for governor are:

- Jennifer Carrol Foy
- Lee Carter
- Terry McAuliffe
- Justin Fairfax
-  Jennifer McClellan
Briefly, Jennifer Carrol Foy is my favorite for this, though I do like Lee Carter too. I'm disappointed that there are so many people in this race, and it's very important to me that Terry McAuliffe doesn't win the primary (though it's likely he will).
Terry McAuliffe is a terrible candidate. He is funded by Dominion, and many other large corporation. He supported the pipelines that we can not build if we're actually planning on transitioning to clean energy in the next 10 years.
Terry McAuliffe is the favorite to win, in a state that likes big money candidates.

Jennifer Carrol Foy I think is an excellent candidate to take him on, though there are other good candidates in the race. JCF has had multiple excellent endorsements including Ben Jealous and the Sunrise Movement.
The Sunrise Movement is an excellent organization with regard to environmental activism.

The candidates for running for Lt Governor are:

- Sam Rasoul
- Hala Ayala
- Mark Levine
- Andria McClellan
- Elizabeth Guzman
- Sean Perryman
- Xaviar Jamar Warren

Sam Rasoul is my favorite to win here. He has been an active candidate fighting for the green new deal. Multiple activists friends have been working for and donating to his campaign. I feel very confident in supporting him.

The candidates for Attorney General are:

- Jerrauld C. "Jay" Jones
- Mark Herring
From Washington Post, 2019,
Also some commentary on Jerrauld Jones:
I don't know enough about Mark Herring, but as he is a fixture in "Corporate Democratic Virginia" I wouldn't mind some new leadership.

The sample ballot for Harrisonburg is here:

Sunday, February 9, 2020

I endorse Bernie Sanders for March 3rd primaries

Super Tuesday is coming up: March 3rd.
Here in Virginia, you must be registered to vote by Feb 10:
The primary is an "OPEN" primary, which means you don't need to be registered as any particular party.
For other states this may help.


I endorse Bernie Sanders

Let me make a case that Bernie Sanders is the best candidate, and that in order to elect him, we will need everyone doing what they are able.

I'll do this by showing that his campaign:
- has the right policy for the critical time we're in
- has the right morale case, not just based on politics
- is the most capable of winning in November

And finally:
That his campaign, since it is run by individuals, needs all of us.

So first:

He has the right policy for the critical time we're in

The biggest issue for me is Climate Change, and for that there is a limited time line. We must act NOW to respond to the devastation that is happening, and is projected to get worse over the next several years. Every year with no action will make the situation worse.

It feels very disingenuous when we say that we must respond to climate issues and ignore the poor who are suffering now. Climate activists too often focus on the urgent change that needs to happen forgetting that people are working those jobs (the Green New Deal has a Jobs guarantee). And millions of Americans can't afford to pay their health insurance when they get sick.

So who am I to say: "Climate change is urgent, we all need to pay for it" when some people, the disenfranchised and poor, will obviously pay more.
Medicare for All, in a post-climate change world, is after all, protecting the people who will be sick from Climate Change.
Housing for All, in a post-climate change world, protects people who are stuck IN the climate.

Time and time again, Bernie Sanders shows that his policy affect the working people, who this country has left behind.

He has the right morale case for people Interaction

His policy is right, but he also approaches interactions with grace. As one of his supporters, I wish he would point out all the flaws with the other candidates, but he continually refuses to do that.
A month ago, a Bernie surrogate released an Opt-Ed that showed Biden was corrupt. I think the opt-ed was 100% correct. Bernie is way too gracious for this, though, and apologized. Whether or not you think the mud flinging is good or not. It's crazy to think that Bernie is anything but gracious in this.

Peter Daou was a Hillary Clinton Surrogate in 2016. He joined the campaign in mid-2016, and ended up fighting online with some Bernie Sanders supporters because of how he felt they weren't supportive enough of the Primary candidate.

Four years later, he switched and is now backing Bernie Sanders. I recommend you read his op-ed: "I Was Bernie’s Biggest Critic in 2016—I’ve Changed My Mind" In it he describes what he sees as a very welcoming campaign, where people he fought with in 2016 have welcomed him in as he re-assessed the need for a strong progressive candidate.

Where Bernie Sanders wasn't prepared for a national campaign in 2016, he seems more than ready for it in 2020. His campaign has reached out to all kinds of diverse actors, and created coalitions across sexuality, race, and religion. The struggle that unites the campaign is the class struggle. The weak vs the powerful. For we are all much closer to being homeless than being a billionaire.

But can he win?

One off the major concerns of voters, is that Bernie Sanders can't actually win the general election.
I also am very concerned about being Donald Trump, and I can't imagine anymore capable of beating him.
His policies might seem far to the left, or very radical, but remember we've been implementing half measures for a long time, and people are ready for change.
Don't just take my word for it. Poll after poll shows that Medicare for All is extremely popular. The Hill reported that 70% of Americans supported Medicare for All in 2018. That's more popular than impeaching the president. It's true that support for Medicare for all has gone down along with the millions spent in anti-Medicare for All ads, however the policy remains largely popular.

While the media and moderate democrats are focused primarily on registered moderate democrats who vote either way, I think there is a large voting block of independents that are to the left of most of the Democratic Party, that were left behind when the country moved to the right.
This is the power of Bernie Sander's campaign, bringing out new voters, and people who aren't empowered to vote.
We saw that in Iowa. Bernie's campaign connects better to workers because it advocates for them. The campaign went and talked to Immigrants and workers at meat processing plants, and brought them into the party by talking about issues that matter to them.

The biggest factor, that goes beyond the money that's been in politics for far too long, is that Bernie's Campaign is a powerhouse of volunteers. This machine, sending out millions of texts and making so many phone calls, the campaign has to re-strategize before Iowa.
Just imagine this base of volunteers re-organized to take on Donald Trump. You know that the other campaigns don't have the same level of support from volunteers. You know that all they have is campaign money, and Super PACs.

So what can you do?

With Bernie Sanders rising in the polls it might be easy to just sit back and watch it happen.
With so much misinformation around Bernie Sander's policies, and the continued accusations of his "angry" volunteers (Bernie Bros--a myth) it's clear that there are powerful people who don't like his campaign.

The best way to counter this narrative, as uncomfortable as it may seem, is to keep talking to your friends.
Download the BERN app on your phone, so you have access to policy questions. Add some of your friends into it that you know support him.
Donations are good, but we have to build a movement that will bring people in, and rally against the 1%.

Bernie Sanders realizes that he can't change our political climate on his own. He needs all of us. That's why the slogan is "Not Me. Us." This is hard, because it means we have to do the work.

If you're inspired by this, and want to help but aren't sure what would fit you best, send me a message and I can find something that works for you.

I'll be out there, getting outside my comfort zone, because we need political action that protects those who are weak, and can actually beat Trump in November.

Saturday, October 5, 2019

Election Day is Tuesday November 5, 2019

Hey everyone!

I figured it's about time I give everyone an update.
Deadline to register is approaching fast: October 15th. Please make sure your friends are registered.

On the ballot you see 5 elections, and only 2 that seem to have "choices":
  • Senate of Virginia. April Moore is running against incumbent Mark Obenshain. April is the clear Climate activist in this race. She also has supported expanding medicare, which Obenshain opposed.
  • House of Delegates. Brent Finnegan is running against incumbent Tony Wilt for the second time. Brent is a community activist, and has time for a lot of the community activities, and on the right side of all the issues I know of. Brent is running his campaign on small dollar donations, which means that Tony Wilt is out-raising him by large amounts, but it also means that Brent's campaign is NOT bought.
If it it's not already clear, my endorsements are April Moore, and Brent Finnegan.
If you have the time to help them "Get Out the Vote" I would strongly encourage you to help. You can find ways to get connected on their websites, and small dollar amounts you can give will always be appreciated.
I would love to talk to you more about this, if you have concerns about giving to politicians, but I also know that each person should only commit in the ways that they can.