There are two good things about Conor Lamb running for the Senate-- he's leaving the House and he's not going to win the Senate seat. Lamb was elected to Congress in 2018. Since then, he has run up the worst voting record of any of Pennsylvania's congressional Democrats. His ProgressivePunch rating is a solid "F"-- the 20th worst Democrat in the House. He voted against Pelosi as speaker.
Most of the district is west and north of Pittsburgh with the convenient exception of Mt. Lebanon, Lamb's hometown south of Pittsburgh. Almost all the voters live in Allegheny and Beaver counties. Last year, Biden beat Trump in the district 50.7% to 48.0%. Lamb beat his right-wing challenger, the current GOP Senate frontrunner, Sean Parnell, 222,253 (51.1%) to 212,284 (48.9%). Current voter registration favors the Democrats:
And now the good news. The candidate running to replace Lamb, isn't another Republican-lite DINO. A former Bernie delegate and a graduate of the Naval Academy in Annapolis, Chris' economic populism is a perfect fit for PA-17, where he is campaigning against monopoly power. "Consolidation of industries has cost us jobs, stifled competition, hurt consumers, killed small businesses, and left workers without options or bargaining power," he wrote on his campaign site. Workers have suffered under corporate power that can fire you for any reason, dictate the terms of your job, and outsource your work at the drop of a hat. Corporations (supported by the Republican politicians they fund) have lobbied hard to slash taxes and regulations, all while pouring cash into our elections and enriching themselves and shareholders through huge profits, stock buybacks, and dividends."
He is telling voters how important it is "to bolster antitrust enforcement, and how he plans to help the the Biden administration’s plans to do that. "Corporations," he wrote, "should also pay their fair share of taxes and be held to account when they kill jobs and evade taxes through outsourcing and tax dodging schemes. With their massive corporate profits and stock gains throughout the pandemic, there is no reason why big corporations shouldn’t be contributing to rebuilding the nation’s crumbling infrastructure. And when corporations cut corners on safety and other rules, we should be aggressive in protecting their workers, customers, and neighbors."
His campaign emphasizes expanding Medicare to include dental, vision, and hearing services; to allowing Medicare to negotiate better prescription drug prices; and closing the Medicaid coverage gap. And, as you'd expect from any Bernie delegate, Chris believes that health care is a human right and will work hard to achieve universal coverage for all Americans. I asked him to introduce himself with a a guest post. How about reading it and consider contributing to his campaign by clicking on the thermometer on the left.
We Need To Fight for the Common Good
-by Chris Deluzio
My name is Chris Deluzio. I served on active duty as an officer in the Navy, deployed a few times (including to Iraq with Army Civil Affairs), and have fought as a lawyer to protect our voting rights and our elections. And I’m working hard with fellow faculty at the University of Pittsburgh-- where I teach as an adjunct at the law school -- to form a union with the United Steelworkers. Now, I’m running for Congress in the competitive 17th district of Pennsylvania.
Like so many of my fellow veterans, I learned a lesson during my time in uniform about the power of solidarity: that you never leave a person behind, regardless of who they are, where they’re from, what they look like, or who they love. But I look around western Pennsylvania and all over this country, and I see way too many people left behind. I see right-wing politicians and the billionaires and corporations who fund them put their own selfish interests ahead of our common good.
And that simple idea-- that we have to fight for our common good-- is animating my run.
Fighting for the common good means calling bullshit when the radical right wraps themselves in the flag and claims they own patriotism. They don’t.
• It’s not patriotic to put profits over people.
• It’s not patriotic to ignore science and put our health at risk.
• It’s not patriotic to try to take away people’s healthcare and a woman’s right to choose.
• It’s not patriotic to attack workers and unions.
• It’s not patriotic to send young Americans -- my friends and me -- off to two decades of forever wars.
• It’s not patriotic to try to topple our democracy.
Patriotism to me means fighting for our common good-- for all of us, and our shared prosperity.
And to do that, we have to take on the power that the biggest and richest corporations are wielding over nearly every aspect of our lives. It’s no accident that when you look around western Pennsylvania you see crumbling infrastructure, underfunded schools, unions on the defensive, huge corporations gobbling up competitors, people struggling with lousy health care that they can’t afford, parents struggling to take care of kids, and so many more consequences of a government that’s failed to serve the people. Decades ago, this region saw the death of the steel industry-- people around here know what it means to lose the security of good solid union jobs and the economic security that came with them, just so corporations could take advantage of bad trade deals and chase cheaper labor for more profit.
We need to fundamentally change who Washington serves-- and it ought to be the people. Instead of protecting corporate profits, Congress needs to deliver once-in-a-generation investment in our infrastructure, family sustaining union jobs, health care that isn’t lousy and covers everyone, protection of Social Security, federal legislation to protect our voting rights and our democracy, and so much more.
This won’t be easy-- but it starts with winning this competitive House seat, something that the far right and their corporate backers are going to do everything they can to prevent. I’ll fight them every step of the way.