Oregon gained enough new residents to win a 6th congressional district this year. The Democratic state legislature created a nice blue district south and southwest of Portland and centered around Salem. The partisan lean is D+11. The state has 5 safe Democratic districts and one heavily red GOP dumping ground. Blue America has endorsed 3 candidates, Doyle Canning in the open seat that Pete DeFazio is giving up, Jamie McLeod Skinner in a bid to defeat anti-working class Blue Dog Kurt Schrader and Matt West in the new district.
Matt West is the most progressive candidate in OR-06, but there are something like 10 Democrats running, including the woman who drew the district lines (state Rep Andrea Salinas) and a random carpetbagger named Carrick Flynn, who:
1- has a multi-billionaire sugar daddy, Sam Fried, worth $22.5 billion and living in the Bahamas, who is trying to buy the seat for his friend
2- is the recipient of a million dollars in support from the House Majority PAC for no reason other than the DCCC wants to suck up to Fried (one of Biden's biggest donors-- $5.2 million-- in 2020)
3- was the subject of a press conference this morning with all the other candidates exposing this plan to buy OR-6.
The other candidates released this statement: "We strongly condemn House Majority PAC's unprecedented and inappropriate decision to spend nearly a million dollars in this Democratic primary. House Majority PAC-- House leadership's SuperPAC, allegedly tasked with holding Republicans accountable and electing Democrats to Congress-- should not be spending resources to divide Democrats. This is a highly competitive primary with many strong candidates. The field includes four women-- three of which are women of color-- and two men who all have substantive experience working in the legislature, local office, science, the military, and healthcare. This effort by teh political arm of teh Democratic establishment to buy this race for one candidate is a slap in the face to every Democratic voter and volunteer in Oregon-- and is especially concerning in a year when all resources must go to protecting the Democratic majority."
They jointly concluded that "Carrick Flynn, the candidate receiving this financial support, has already benefited from nearly $5 million in support from cryptocurrency billionaire Sam Bankman-Fried, at a time when the cryptocurrency industry seeks to increase its influence in Washington. House Majority PAC's troubling decision to meddle in a Democratic primary in support of this candidate begs the question: With so much needed to defend the House, how can they afford involvement in a primary? Why is this happening? Where is this money coming from? And what does its source want in exchange? We call on House Majority PAC to actually stand your party's values and let the voters of Oregon decide who their Democratic nominee will be.
And it wasn't just the other candidates complaining. Bold PAC, which represents Hispanic members of Congress, is also furious. Their chair, Ruben Gallego (D-AZ) released a statement this morning ripping House Majority PAC a new one after it committed to purchasing nearly $1 million in television ads to support Flynn.
Voters and candidates of color delivered majorities for Democrats in the 2020 elections. Latina women helped lead the charge by mobilizing communities and voting for Democrats up and down the ballot across the country. Their role in the midterms will be no less critical. Yet despite this fact, House Majority PAC-- the largest spender working to elect Democrats to the House-- has deliberately chosen not to endorse Andrea Salinas, a candidate who is among the most qualified Latinas running in a congressional race anywhere in the country. HMP is tasked with defending the House Majority by boosting Democrats and holding Republicans accountable, not with spending critical resources against a woman who has spent decades fighting for progressive causes and who will excite Democratic voters in November.
Right now, Democrats should be doubling-down on their investments to empower Latino and Latina candidates like Andrea who are running strong campaigns focused on issues that matter to communities of color and working families. Oregon has never had a Latina or Latino representative in Congress, and the 6th district-- which is 21 percent Hispanic-- has the opportunity to make history this year.
Instead of supporting Andrea, House Majority PAC is spending nearly $1 million to prop up her opponent Carrick Flynn. This stands in contrast to the thinking of a majority of Democrats who know that Latino candidates and voters must be taken seriously for the midterm elections. That includes over 80 elected Democrats, progressive organizations, and community leaders that have endorsed Andrea, such as CHC BOLD PAC, Planned Parenthood Action Fund, Service Employees International Union (SEIU), and League of Conservation Voters Action Fund (LCV). HMP’s decision to oppose these groups raises serious concerns.
BOLD PAC encouraged Andrea to run for Congress because she is an exceptionally qualified leader who doesn’t back down from a fight. We’ve been with her since day one and we stand resolute in our commitment to helping her get elected to Congress.
Sylvia Garcia (D-TX) put out a statement of her own along the same lines: "As the fastest-growing segment of the electorate over the last 20 years, Latino voters represent the country’s second-largest voter bloc by ethnicity-- those who take them for granted, do so at their own peril. Andrea Salinas is a transformational leader who has spent decades fighting for women and families as an advocate and an elected official. She was instrumental in passing Oregon’s Reproductive Health Equity Act, the strongest reproductive rights law in the country. While 145 women serve in Congress today, we still make up only 27 percent of the entire Congress, compared to 50 percent of the U.S. population. At a time when reproductive rights are at stake, Democrats should be moving mountains to ensure that there are more women at the table-- especially women of color-- instead of actively trying to tip the scales against an exceptionally experienced Latina. That is precisely what House Majority PAC has done. BOLD PAC unequivocally stands behind Andrea and her strong and historic campaign."
Salinas is hardly a transformational leader. She's a garden variety Democrat, an identity politics candidate who has not demonstrated any political courage and has voted badly on several key issues important to working families. Better than Flynn? Sure. But transformational? Don't make me laugh. Matt West actually is a transformational leader. Again, the Oregon candidates endorsed by Blue America can be found here.