In the final weeks of a dispiriting presidential election, hope is on the horizon – and it’s down-ballot. That’s where you will find more and more everyday people deciding to challenge neoliberal politics and build a bottom-up movement that fights for fairness in our economy and democracy for all people.
We are proud to announce the first slate of progressive candidates endorsed by People’s Action, a national organization of more than a million people in affiliated groups across 29 states.
The candidates who make up our “People’s Action 22” will help build on the progressive political revolution ignited by Sen. Bernie Sanders’ presidential campaign. They are grassroots leaders committed to fighting for people instead of corporate profits. They have proven their commitment to racial justice, gender justice, climate justice and economic justice.
We know this because the “People’s Action 22” candidates come from out of the justice movement in America; many of them as leaders within our own organizations. They live in the real America, not in the corporate boardrooms.
They know what it’s like to not be able to make ends meet. They understand what it’s like to have to choose between meals or medicine for your children. They understand what it’s like to be targeted for police violence because you are black, or to have your family threatened by deportation.
Each of these candidates represents the world we believe is possible, one where everyone has what they need to reach their full potential. With these down-ballot candidates, we have a start on creating the world as it should be.
The “People’s Action 22” list includes leaders like:
● Gina Melaragno in Maine, who was inspired to run for state representative by her own experience with lack of health care access.
● Pramila Jayapal, a Washington state senator running for Congress, who founded Hate Free Zone (now the People’s Action member organization OneAmerica) in response to hate and discrimination after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.
● LaTonya Johnson, running for state senate in Wisconsin, who owned and operated a child care center for 10 years, caring for Milwaukee’s poorest children and their parents struggling to cover their basic needs.
Zephyr Teachout of New York, a candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives, was the first executive director of the Sunlight Foundation, working for transparent government. She has fought big banks and led the movement against fracking in New York.
They will work to make sure our democracy is power for those who don’t have it – to hold accountable those who use their power only to maximize their profits.
Every day, new leaders with values we share are stepping up and standing out in our communities. People’s Action is committed to supporting the next generation of progressive leadership as part of our mission to build a country that works for everyone.
The full slate of the “People’s Action 22” is below:
Russ Feingold, Wisconsin, U.S. Senate
Christina Hartman, Pennsylvania, U.S. House of Representatives District 16
Pramila Jayapal, Washington, U.S. House of Representatives, District 7
Zephyr Teachout, New York, U.S. House of Representatives, District 19
Heidi Brooks, Maine, State House of Representatives District 61
Mari Cordes, Vermont, House of Representatives, Addison, District 4
Arturo Fierro, New Mexico, State House of Representatives District 7
Lauren Freedman, Michigan, Kalamazoo School Board
Kim Foxx, Illinois, Cook County, State’s Attorney
LaTonya Johnson, Wisconsin, State Senate District 6
Denise Lopez, Nevada, Sparks City Council Ward 1
Theresa Mah, Illinois, State House of Representatives, District 2
Gina Melaragno, Maine, State House of Representatives District 62
Sara Niccoli, New York, State Senate, District 46
Ilhan Omar, Minnesota, State House of Representatives District 60B
Chris Rabb, Pennsylvania, State House of Representatives District 200
Jamie Raskin, Maryland, Congressional District 8
Gustavo Rivera, New York, State Senate District 33
J. Alejandro Urrutia, New Hampshire, State House of Representatives District Hillsborough 37
Andru Volinsky, New Hampshire, Executive Council Dist. 2
Mandy Wright, Wisconsin, State Assembly, District 85
David Zuckerman, Vermont, Lieutenant Governor
LeeAnn Hall and George Goehl are co-executive directors of People’s Action,a national organization of more than a million people across 29 states working for economic, racial, gender and climate justice – and to ensure everyone a voice in our political system. From family farms to big cities, from coast to coast, we’re fighting for community over greed, justice over racism, and people and planet over big corporations.