Wanted: More Fighters In Congress
Every Democrat I know likes a fighter. And more important, wants some fighters on Team Blue. It’s why Democrats are so excited, for example, about Lucas Kunce in Missouri of all places. And it’s why Kunce is polling neck-and-neck with the Republican favorite, former Missouri Governor Eric Greitens. It’s why so many Democrats love Bernie. And it's why they fell in love with Jamie Raskin, Adam Schiff and Alan Grayson when they saw each of them in action on television. Even Joe Biden recognizes that. Look what Biden— a lifelong conservative corporate Democrat— had to say about Grayson, a lifelong progressive shit-kicker:
Same with the late civil rights fighter and Georgia Congressman John Lewis, who recognized a fellow fighter in Alan Grayson, long after he was no longer really able to be on the front lines himself:
It has always seemed to me that conservatives and Republicans fought harder— and dirtier— than Democrats did. When I was much younger, that seemed to be because Republicans were fighting for a social and economic status quo that enriched them and their backers and Democrats were fighting for abstract values. Now conservatives are fighting for abstract values as well— and half the Democrats are basically conservative and fighting for a social and economic status quo just like the Republicans used to. If everyone loves a fighter, not many people love a values-free careerist.
But when the Democratic base sees a fighter, the ones who are paying attention rally behind them, the way they got behind AOC, Ted Lieu, Cori Bush, Mondaire Jones… Those political leaders are all tough and they all stand up for working families and against right-wing tyranny. We need more like them. Yesterday when the United Auto Workers endorsed Melanie D’Arrigo in a Democratic primary on Long Island that includes 3 laugh-worthy establishment stooges, the UAW Regional Director, Beverley Brakeman, said the union was doing so because D’Arrigo “a fearless champion for workers and an unbought leader who will fight for fair working conditions, a just economy, and the right to organize.” I bet you can guess why I bolded “fearless and “fight,” right?
I’ve been telling people that the Democratic Party needs more Senate candidates like Lucas Kunce, Tom Nelson and John Fetterman and fewer (none, really) like overly cautious careerists Val Demings, Tim Ryan, Cheri Beasley and Mandela Barnes. Democrats aren’t even challenging the Republicans— making a case that will reverberate up and down the ballot— in Utah and Alaska. The party for Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt needs a resurrection. And crap leaders like Schumer, Pelosi, Hoyer, Clyburn and— worst of all— Hakeem Jeffries are not going to get us there.
A name that’s been on many Democrat’s minds since over 30 million people saw this tweet and its underlying 5 minute video. Here, watch the video again; she’s showing her frightened and usually party leaders and often cowed Democratic candidates how to do it:
Who ever heard of her before that? No one but her colleagues and maybe her constituents. Now Democrats across the country love her. Biden called her to congratulate her. The most talented political publicist in America, Lis Smith, the genius who turned a worthless schlubb like Mayo Pete into a contender and re-invented him as someone with a national political career. With an already bold and compelling McMorrow, Smith has more to work with.
She flipped a red suburban Detroit state Senate seat from red to blue the first time she ran for office. She flipped the script on Republicans too. Usually Democrats are afraid of Republicans and what Republicans will say about them. Republicans are afraid of Mallory McMorrow. She reminds me of former Columbus, Georgia mayor Teresa Tomlinson. “It’s fear that cripples the Democratic Party,” she wrote here at DWT. “Fear of our policies, fear of who we are, and fear of the Republicans. Yes, fear is what has politically cost us in the last many election cycles. One cannot lead if one is afraid. The thing about leadership is that people want their leaders to be brave. They care less about what you think on the issues than whether you have the moxie to fight for them and the strength of conviction to tell them what you really think… That’s what the Right can’t stand about The Squad. Those women are fearless about their beliefs. They refuse to be bullied, and that is dangerous to the Republican playbook of shaming scared Democrats into milk toast, mealy-mouthed, baby-splitting positions that are equivocal and stand for nothing. American voters revile those who won’t tell the people what they think. Even if you don’t support the policies-- or certainly some of the statements-- of The Squad, you can’t deny that you appreciate that they unabashedly tell the world what they think.”
Yesterday Blake Hounshell— no doubt pitched by Lis Smith— profiled McMorrow for The Times., noting that since The Speech she’s raised more than a million dollars for Michigan Democrats trying to flip the state Senate (which has been controlled by the GOP since 1984, before she was born).
Reflecting the national platform Ms. McMorrow gained after her speech, more than 11,000 donors from all 50 states have contributed, according to her campaign treasurer, Ray Wert, who is her husband and a journalist. She has become a regular on liberal podcasts, late-night television and MSNBC in the weeks since her viral moment, which came after a colleague in the Michigan State Senate accused her in a fund-raising email of wanting to “groom and sexualize” children.
…The money has gone into a combination of accounts, her campaign said: the Michigan Senate Democratic Fund; the Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee; her leadership fund, which is named A More Perfect Michigan; and her own candidate committee.
Through A More Perfect Michigan, Ms. McMorrow is helping fellow Democrats in seven key races. The current composition of Michigan’s 38-seat Senate is 22 Republicans and 16 Democrats, though Democrats say the chamber is newly competitive after an independent commission redrew the district boundaries. If Democrats retain the governorship and flip just three of those seats, they will secure the majority.