I've talked a lot about the need for progressives to get tough — even (and especially) with the Democratic Party. Here are two to support aggressively between now and the June 5 California primary:
■ Norman Solomon (CA-2) — This the first of my two candidate recommendations for next Tuesday. He's running for Lynn Woolsey's old seat. (Woolsey is former head of the Progressive Caucus; you can see my thoughts on Woolsey here. Heads up — they're not flattering.)
Both Digby and Howie Klein at ActBlue are very high on Solomon. They talk about him in language usually reserved for Alan Grayson. From Solomon's ActBlue page (emphasis and paragraphing mine everywhere):
Norman SolomonThose who push for progressives in elections have high hopes for Solomon as the right kind of Democrat.
A proven progressive leader, not a cookie cutter Democrat. Norman is the antidote to the Conservative Consensus. "You can’t beat heartless Republicans with spineless Democrats," he told us. "Paul Wellstone talked about boosting the democratic wing of the Democratic Party. I intend to strengthen the progressive wing of the Progressive Caucus... There’s no future but disaster if Democrats cave in to Republicans. And-- as a progressive Democrat-- I’m ready, willing and able to push back against the Obama administration every time the White House betrays progressive values."
Here's Glenn Greenwald, no friend of Obama, on Norman Solomon:
The long-time anti-war activist, co-founder of the great media criticism group FAIR, and author of “Made Love, Got War: Close Encounters with America’s Warfare State” – a critique of America’s decades of militarism and the role which its media plays in perpetuating it — is about as close to a perfect Congressional candidate as it gets. He’s written 11 other books, including “War Made Easy: How Presidents and Pundits Keep Spinning Us to Death”: the title speaks for itself.More here. Solomon's critique of Obama's NDAA is the same as ours.
He’s running in the heavily Democratic California district being vacated by the retiring Rep. Lynn Woolsey. A newly released poll from an independent Democratic pollster shows him with a serious chance to win (there is an open primary in June, and the top two candidates, regardless of party affiliation, will then face each other in a November run-off).
In 2002 and 2003, Solomon led three trips to Iraq to try to avert the war (trips that included former and current members of Congress), and was one of the most widely featured media voices during that period opposing the attack on moral, legal and prudential grounds.
Solomon's ActBlue contributions page is here. Please contribute, and if you're in his district, volunteer and vote.
■ Lee Rogers (CA-25) — Dr. Rogers is a two-fer, a strong progressive who is also poised to unseat one of the most corrupt and despicable Republicans in Congress, Buck McKeon.
Who's Buck McKeon? He's the reason there will be drones over U.S. airspace — military, police, commercial and private. Yep. Do click; that law has passed. They snuck it into the FAA bill.
How do we know McKeon is corrupt? Not only does he live off of drone-industry lobbyists. His wife is running a phoney-baloney California statehouse campaign in order to collect national aerospace-corp campaign donations. It's a family business.
From Lee Roger's ActBlue page:
Lee RogersHowie Klein has written much about the Rogers-McKeon race. I'll just close with this:
You'd be hard-pressed to find a more corrupt Member of Congress anywhere than Buck McKeon. And you'd be just as hard pressed to find a more together, harder working challenger than Dr. Lee Rogers.
Remember, McKeon, more than any other Member of Congress is keeping the pointless and costly occupation of Afghanistan going. Replacing him with Rogers is the closest thing we have to a referendum to end that war.Lee Rogers has a real shot to win. Please do support him however you can.
You have to play to win, progressives. Unless you're a third-party person or an electoral dropout, there is only one way to fix this, given the many deadlines the nation is facing — by blocking any further Republican gains AND by fixing the Democratic party. "Fix" means commandeer.
Me, I prefer to act (no dropout I). I also prefer to push Dems hard from the progressive left. You can help this week by supporting and electing Norman Solomon and Lee Rogers.
To follow or send links: @Gaius_Publius