10 Progressive Candidates to Watch in Midterm Races

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While most progressive candidates lost to an incumbent in this year’s Democratic primaries, progressives won over half of the open-seat races.

One study found that progressive candidates received many high-profile endorsements, including from Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) or Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.). They also enjoyed support from one or more of the following groups: Indivisible, Justice Democrats, Our Revolution, Sunrise Movement, or The Progressive Change Campaign Committee (PCCC).

Here are 10 progressive-backed candidates to look out for in Tuesday’s midterm elections:

Jamie McLeod-Skinner, Oregon’s 5th

Endorsements: Indivisible, Our Revolution, PCCC

Jamie McLeod-Skinner was the only progressive-backed candidate out of 11 to beat an incumbent in this year’s Democratic primaries.

McLeod-Skinner defeated the seven-term incumbent Rep. Kurt Schrader, who was endorsed by President Biden, in the Democratic primary for Oregon’s 5th Congressional District.

McLeod-Skinner’s policy priorities include affordable housing, protecting rural economies from corporate take-over, and lowering health care costs. Her campaign website says she has also been endorsed by Planned Parenthood Action Fund and will “will take on extremists like [her] opponent who would ban access to abortion, even before a woman knows she’s pregnant — and keep government out of our personal medical decisions.”

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She is running against Republican candidate Lori Chavez-DeRemer in Tuesday’s general election. McLeod-Skinner did not respond to The Daily Signal’s request for comment by publication.

Maxwell Alejandro Frost, Florida’s 10th

Endorsements: PCCC, Sanders

Frost, 25, won the Democratic primary for Florida’s 10th Congressional District this August.

“As the first generation-z member of Congress, from day one, I will fight to end gun violence, win Medicare For All, transform our racist criminal justice system, and end the climate crisis,” Frost states on his campaign website.

Frost is running against Republican candidate Calvin Wimbish in the general election for U.S. House Representative of Florida’s 10th Congressional District.

Frost did not respond to The Daily Signal’s request for comment by publication.

Jonathan Jackson, Illinois’ 1st

Endorsements: Our Revolution, Sanders

Progressive-backed Jonathan Jackson, son of Rev. Jesse Jackson, won the Democratic primary in Illinois’ First Congressional District, which includes much of the South Side of Chicago. Jackson’s victory comes after the district’s 15-term Democratic representative, Bobby Rush, announced his retirement in January.

“We have enormous challenges, from hospitalization to some of the largest discrepancies in life expectancy between Englewood and Streeterville,” Jackson said at a watch party in June. “We are seeing an epidemic of gun violence. We are seeing grocery stores close in Englewood. … We are going to take this to [Housing and Urban Development]; we are going to take this to the Agriculture Department; we are going to take this all through D.C. until we are heard and our lives matter.”

Jackson’s policy priorities, as stated on his website, include:

  • Introducing a regulatory framework to make Blockchain technology and other digital asset markets more accessible to communities of color.
  • Affordable housing via the People’s Housing program, which provides a progressive framework for housing by declaring it a fundamental human right.
  • A Green New deal plan that “emphasizes environmental and social justice and acknowledges how historically oppressed groups are more likely to be affected by climate change.” This plan calls for “protection of workers’ rights, community ownership, universal healthcare, and a job guarantee.”
  • Reducing crime by getting more guns off the street.
  • Address the wage gap, “systemic racial and gender inequities,” by raising wages of all working women and providing pay equity.

Jackson will face Republican Army veteran Eric Carlson in the general elections this Tuesday. Jackson did not respond to The Daily Signal’s request for comment.

Delia Ramirez, Illinois’ 3rd

Endorsements: Indivisible, Our Revolution, Sanders

Illinois General Assembly Fourth District Assistant Majority Leader Delia Ramirez (D) won the Democratic nomination for U.S. Representative of the state’s 3rd Congressional District.

 LGBTQ+ rights are among Ramirez’s policy goals. According to her campaign website, “She will support and fight for the Equality Act to fully guarantee nondiscrimination protections for the LGBTQ+ community throughout the United States including in housing, employment, education, and federally funded programs.”

  • She plans to add “gender identity” and “sexual orientation” as protected classes under the federal Fair and Equal Housing Act.
  • “She will support the Every Child Deserves a Family Act to end discrimination against LGBTQ+ families in the child welfare system.”

View her other policy goals on her campaign website. Ramirez did not respond to The Daily Signal’s request for comment.

Randi McCallian, Missouri’s 8th

Endorsements: Indivisible

Randi McCallian won the Democratic primaries for Missouri’s 8th Congressional District. McCallian told The Daily Signal that “corporate greed” and “corporate price gouging” are major factors behind the inflation of gas and food prices.

“I believe our district deserves a representative that wants to see more opportunity here, a Congressperson that fights for us and not against us,” McCallian said. “It is an honor to provide a choice to voters in this election, regardless of party.”

“People of the 8th should vote for me if they are ready for someone who will direct our tax dollars back into our district to invest in our local infrastructure and economy, for investment in jobs, healthcare, and educational opportunities,” she added. “My policies are those that the majority of Americans want: to end corporate greed in our government, to bring manufacturing jobs back, and to improve healthcare. A major reason for the inflation of gas and food prices is due to corporate greed and my policy stance is to protect Americans from corporate price gouging.”

See McCallian’s other policy priorities on her campaign website.

Summer Lee, Pennsylvania’s 12th

Endorsements: Ocasio-Cortez, Justice Democrats, Our Revolution, PCCC, Sanders, Sunrise

Pennsylvania state Rep. Summer Lee, a Democrat representing Allegheny County, beat candidate Steve Irwin by under a percentage point in the state’s 12th Congressional District primaries. Her victory comes after the district’s Democratic incumbent, Rep. Mike Doyle, announced his retirement.

Voting rights are one of Lee’s policy priorities. Her campaign website states:

Not only must we end racist voter ID and suppression laws, restore the full power of the Voting Rights Act, and end gerrymandering, but we must go farther and provide every person in our country with the right to vote – from previously incarcerated people to immigrants, everyone deserves a voice in our democracy.

She also aims to “ward off a right-wing Supreme Court that could poke holes in LGBTQ rights based on ‘religious liberty,’ and address the many disparities that the LGBTQ+ community faces in affordable, inclusive health care.”

Check out Lee’s other policy goals on her campaign website. She did not respond to The Daily Signal’s request for comment by publication.

Jasmine Crockett, Texas’ 30th

Endorsements: Our Revolution, Sanders

Texas State Rep. Jasmine Crockett, a Democrat who represents Dallas County, stepped up as the Democratic nominee for Texas’s 30th Congressional District this May, after U.S. Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson announced her retirement.

Crockett’s areas of interest include expanding voting access and codifying Roe v. Wade. Her other policy priorities can be viewed on her campaign website.

Crockett did not respond to The Daily Signal’s request for comment.

Greg Casar, Texas’ 35th

Endorsements: Ocasio-Cortez, Indivisible, Justice Democrats, Our Revolution, Sanders, Sunrise

Former Austin City Council Member Greg Casar won the Democratic primary in Texas’ 35th Congressional District. Casar is running against former Corpus Christi Mayor Dan McQueen, a Republican, in Tuesday’s general elections.

Among Casar’s policy priorities are Medicare for All, tuition-free higher education, and the legalization of marijuana.

Casar’s other policy goals, as stated on his website, include increasing access to abortion in Texas. Casar previously passed amendments to fund abortion travel costs in The Lone Star State. His campaign website states he “is dedicated to increasing access to reproductive health care, repealing the Hyde Amendment, and codifying Roe v. Wade through the Women’s Health [Protection] Act.”

“Together, we’re taking our fight to the halls of Congress — to fight and deliver on passing Medicare for All, protecting reproductive rights, creating good jobs and fixing our power grid,” Casar said to at a viewing party in March. “Progressive policies are popular, and we’re going to pass them for Texas working families,” he added.

Casar did not respond to The Daily Signal’s request for comment. See his other policy goals on his campaign website.

Becca Balint, Vermont At-Large

Endorsements: Our Revolution, Sanders

Vermont state Senate President and Majority Leader Becca Balint won the Democratic primary for Vermont’s At-Large Congressional District in August. Sen. Bernie Sanders and Our Revolution are among the progressives backing her in the midterm elections.

Sen. Balint’s previous initiatives in Vermont include banning “conversion therapy” for LGBT youth and backing a transgender bathroom bill in the senate. Her current goals include supporting the federal Equality Act, codifying abortion into federal law, and supporting a Green New Deal to fight climate change.

Balint did not respond to The Daily Signal’s request for comment by publication. Her other policy goals appear on her campaign website.

Mandela Barnes, Wisconsin’s U.S. Senate Race

Endorsements: Ocasio-Cortez, Indivisible, PCCC, Sanders

Wisconsin Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes won the state’s Democratic primary for U.S. Senate in August. Barnes is running against three-term Republican incumbent Sen. Ron Johnson in the general election this Tuesday.

“Growing up, I didn’t see a lot of politicians who looked like me or shared my experience … I don’t fit the bill of what a normal politician looks like,” Barnes said at his August victory party.

“We need more real people in the United States Senate,” he said, adding that Sen. Johnson is a “self-serving, out-of-touch politician” who “continues to stack the deck against us” and “wants to take us backwards.”

Barnes did not respond to The Daily Signal’s request for comment.

This is a breaking story and will be updated as election results come in.

Have an opinion about this article? To sound off, please email letters@DailySignal.com and we’ll consider publishing your edited remarks in our regular “We Hear You” feature. Remember to include the url or headline of the article plus your name and town and/or state.

The post 10 Progressive Candidates to Watch in Midterm Races appeared first on The Daily Signal.

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