The progressive insurgency in the Democratic Party continues to gain ground

The progressive insurgency has a chance of scoring its biggest victory yet.

With the early implosion of the Sanders campaign (who appeared to be in a rush to leave), everyone has taken their eyes off of the many races that are still full of true progressives.
Consider how much just four 2018 freshmen house members changed the Overton Window.

Now think what might happen if the Squad doubles, or triples, in members. Plus gaining one member in the Senate.
They could go from changing the conversation, to actually effecting legislation.

There are some on the left that are so scarred and betrayed by the corporate Democrats that they may lash out at anyone supporting progressive candidates with misdirected anger. It doesn't help anyone.

Let's look at the numbers:

Brand New Congress endorsed a lot of candidates this year, and they started a miserable 0-11.
But then Kara Eastman won (polls give her a slim lead in the general despite the DNC opposing her).
Brand New Congress is 4-4 since Eastman's win.

Justice Democrats have a much smaller list of endorsed candidates, of which they have a respectable 3-2 record so far.
This includes Marie Newman knocking off long-time incumbent Dan Lipinski. Since incumbents win 95% of the time, this is no small feat.

The real test of this insurgency happens in two weeks, when New York and Kentucky go to the polls.
Let's start with Charles Booker in Kentucky.

Sanders' announcement also puts the Vermont independent at odds with the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee and positions him against two prominent House Democrats: Foreign Affairs Chair Eliot Engel (D-N.Y.) and Rep. Lacy Clay (D-Mo.), a member of the Congressional Black Caucus...Sanders backed Booker, a black first-term state representative, in the Kentucky Senate race against McConnell ahead of the June 23 primary. Booker, who is running on a platform that includes "Medicare for All" and the "Green New Deal," is challenging Amy McGrath, who has been endorsed by the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee. Booker endorsed Sanders in the presidential primary, while McGrath backed former Vice President Joe Biden.

Booker also did a good job pinning McGrath to her own words in their last debate, to which Booker came directly from having been tear-gassed at the protests in Louisville over the killing of Breonna Taylor. For some reason or another, in her announcement speech, McGrath accused McConnell of standing in the way of the president*’s policies, about which McGrath seems to believe—against all the available evidence—that the president* is sincere.

Booker has an uphill fight. McGrath has the unquestioned support of the DNC and a huge fundraising advantage, but anything could happen.

The race progressives are more likely to win is in New York.

On Tuesday, June 9, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) gave his endorsement to Jamaal Bowman, a left-wing insurgent challenging 16-term Democratic incumbent Rep. Eliot Engel in New York, calling Bowman “someone we can trust to be a powerful advocate for a progressive agenda in Congress.”
...

Like McGrath, Engel has been running a terrible campaign.

Engel’s office had also advertised his participation in two community aid events which gave away food, hand sanitizer and masks. “I was part of that,” Engel claimed. But when Atlantic reporter Edward-Isaac Dovere replied: “But you weren’t there?,” Engel conceded, “I was not there, no.”

Then, on June 2, Engel made his first appearance in the district. At a press event addressing the mass protests and unrest that have followed the police murder of George Floyd, he was caught on a hot mic pressuring Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. to let him speak at the event. “If I didn’t have a primary I wouldn’t care,” he said. Diaz asked him to repeat, and he did.
“Don’t do that to me,” Diaz replied. He added, “Everybody has a primary. You know, I’m sorry.”

While Engel has been blowing it, Bowman has been gathering endorsements and contributions with both hands. I think he's about to knock off an establishment Dem in a leadership position, like AOC two years ago.

Finally, let's not ignore that progressives are winning lots of races at the state and local levels.

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Comments

Cassiodorus's picture

Movement for a People's Party Affiliation and Meeting Sign Up

It looks like a fair portion of Our Revolution is going to ditch the Dems and organize a new political party. I was in on their Oregon conference call last night. They are hoping to run candidates in 2022.

The race to watch in NY is Samelys Lopez for Congress, in the Bronx mostly. She's supported by DSA.

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25 users have voted.

"Freedom is always, and exclusively, freedom for the one who thinks differently.” -- Rosa Luxemburg

@Cassiodorus

It looks like a fair portion of Our Revolution is going to ditch the Dems and organize a new political party.

But until this happens all we've got is the insurgency

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Cassiodorus's picture

@gjohnsit It seems one of the main propositions on the table at present is in finding the Bernie organizations around America and getting them to join the Movement for a People's Party. There is, in short, work to be done. Meanwhile, Bernie Sanders is removing all of his delegates who voice anything other than unequivocal support for Joe Biden. This is, I gather, the outcome a deal that was cut between Sanders and Biden.

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"Freedom is always, and exclusively, freedom for the one who thinks differently.” -- Rosa Luxemburg

travelerxxx's picture

@Cassiodorus

... Meanwhile, Bernie Sanders is removing all of his delegates who voice anything other than unequivocal support for Joe Biden.

Hey, what are friends for, eh?

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@Cassiodorus forming up in Washington st.

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Cassiodorus's picture

@Battle of Blair Mountain I'm a fair distance away, in southern Oregon.

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"Freedom is always, and exclusively, freedom for the one who thinks differently.” -- Rosa Luxemburg

Cassiodorus's picture

I gave Swearingen some publicity in a previous diary. Good to see that she won her primary!

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19 users have voted.

"Freedom is always, and exclusively, freedom for the one who thinks differently.” -- Rosa Luxemburg

bondibox's picture

Broihier is getting my vote. Campaign is reminiscent of Mike Gravel.
https://mikeforky.com/

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4 users have voted.

F the F'n D's

since the Squad voted for the CARES act, and none of the squad stood up to Pelosi.
I am not seeing any progressive policy changes at lower levels, either.
I am hoping for a 3rd party that might actually give a flying damn about the 99%.

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Cassiodorus's picture

@on the cusp https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdwE_y6oOel6hzWTWuVs0Q6iBBXkVA8...

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9 users have voted.

"Freedom is always, and exclusively, freedom for the one who thinks differently.” -- Rosa Luxemburg

The Liberal Moonbat's picture

I've been struggling to see a future since Bernie blew out, but this:

everyone has taken their eyes off of the many races that are still full of true progressives.
Consider how much just four 2018 freshmen house members changed the Overton Window.

This is encouraging!

All this happening below the radar is a double-edged sword, too: The People not noticing is bad (look at 2010), but the Clintoncrats not noticing is good.

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We live in a society in which "we live in a society" is considered a subversive and vaguely-threatening statement.

In the Land of the Blind, the one-eyed man is declared insane when he speaks of colors.

BLM is the lit fuse, but there is so much pent up resentment for the way things are. I fear the big push to get things back to normal and back under the thumb of having a couple of jobs to make a living is deliberate. Whatever happens, people shouldn't have free time to think about life in this shithole country.

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RantingRooster's picture

we "progressives" need to take a page out of Hamas's hand book, by having a "political wing", a "social wing" and a "militant wing", working in concert to achieve "strategic" objectives.

The Political wing runs progressives as political candidates for local elections.
The Social wing setup parallel "social safety net system" (food banks, healthcare and mental health), as advocated by Black Socialist of America.
The Militant wing (think 1960's Black Panthers) that engages in strategic direct action campaigns of Dissent, Disobedience and Disruption (#DissentDisobeyDisrupt) of the "systems", especially in the economic sphere of the 1%.

Focusing only on one aspect, ie the normal political route, is not enough. Typical non-profits are a joke who have been co-opted by their 1% donors who define the "requirements" of the organization. Who gets hired, what issues to focus on, where resources are allocated, etc...

Until the 1% feels the heat of poverty or death, nothing will change. They are starting to feel uncomfortable, but we need to make them fear death or poverty, like we do!

Drinks

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C99, my refuge from an insane world. #ForceTheVote

longtalldrink's picture

@RantingRooster "we "progressives" need to take a page out of Hamas's hand book, by having a "political wing", a "social wing" and a "militant wing", working in concert to achieve "strategic" objectives."

This all calls for massive organization. This is no small feat. But we can ALL play a part. Send each other lists of organizations we hear about "fighting the good fight" so others can decide which (if any) organization one wants to join.

Right now (I believe) people are confused about "what to do next"...since we seem to have a dearth of leadership.

Leaders ARE out there, they just need to know we are with them. We are TIRED of these effin donkeys*.

*" Lions led by donkeys " is a phrase popularly used to describe the British infantry of the First World War and to blame the generals who led them. The contention is that the brave soldiers ( lions) were sent to their deaths by incompetent and indifferent leaders ( donkeys ).

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5 users have voted.

Well done is better than well said-Ben Franklin

This is nibbling around the weakest edges. The Tea Party was an insurgency, and it brought massive gains in record short time for their cause within the Republican Party. One could argue it was rooted in the so-called "Reagan Revolution" and took a long time to come to a head, but the more I review the circumstances the less I believe that to be true. There was a fundamental and large change from the Reagan Republicans to the Tea Party--the two aren't compatible philosophies, and the latter won out over the course of less than 8 years during Bush's time in office.

As long as these candidates work within the Democratic Party machinery they're going to continue to be captured by it and ultimately constrained by its corrupt practices. It's not enough to win some primary contests and fewer general elections. The leadership of the party have to be threatened--and I just don't see any of these candidates doing that. The Tea Party were vicious in their pursuit of power; these candidates want to play nice and seem to truly believe that their differences with establishment dems is one of degree, not fundamental kind.

I view them as useful tools engaged in a necessary act--it keeps a front open that the DNC has to defend--but my view is it's more like a feint, or if we're being charitable maybe one (unwitting, weak) arm of a pincer attack. Real change is only going to come to this system when people tear down all the corrupt garbage that resides in the Democratic Party and in our government. That effort just isn't going to come from people participating in Democrats' sham elections and internal machinations. As far as I'm concerned these "insurgents" are at best misguided, at worst more sheepdogs (like Bernie) who'll start toeing that line as soon as they taste the power of office. And until they prove otherwise I'm not gonna support them at all.

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@BayAreaLefty

The Tea Party was an insurgency, and it brought massive gains in record short time for their cause within the Republican Party... There was a fundamental and large change from the Reagan Republicans to the Tea Party--the two aren't compatible philosophies, and the latter won out over the course of less than 8 years during Bush's time in office.

Both Reagan Republicans and the Tea Party were financed and supported by right-wing media, corporations, and GOP political leaders.
Progressive insurgents are either ignored or slandered by the MSM and Dem political leaders. Unlike the TP, the Left has no wealthy allies.

I think you have things backwards.

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