In the race to replace Ed Markey in the 5th Congressional District, we have a lot of great choices. Speaking for myself — as a resident of Medford and not on behalf of any organization I work for or am associated with — I am proud to say that I am casting my vote for Carl Sciortino and I hope you do, too.
I started out in this election with a lot of assumptions. One assumption I am glad to say has held up is that we have the opportunity to vote our aspirations. There is a slate of good, solid Democratic candidates — we really do not have to vote “against” anyone — so we can vote for who we think will best represents our progressive values. Even the candidate I most disagree with I still believe is a good state legislator and a good person. I feel very fortunate. It is clear, though, that Carl is the most reliably progressive candidate in this race. He is endorsed by Progressive Campaign Change Committee nationally and Progressive Massachusetts (two different progressive organizations, for those who don’t know, but both of which are awesome).
I’m supporting Carl because of how he’ll vote and because of what he’s done:
Carl fought for and won protections for women seeking medical care by passing the “Buffer Zone Bill,” which is now working it’s way to the Supreme Court.
Carl fought for and won an increase in the minimum wage — and is working to increase it yet again.
He fought for and won an end to some egregious corporate tax loopholes.
Carl is the leader on LGBT issues in our Legislature. He introduced, organized for, and won passage of the Transgender Equal Rights Bill.
In fact, on every issue — from economic justice to the environment — I’ve seen him hope for the best, work hard for it, lead, and win. If there is a progressive issue out there, chances are that Carl is writing a bill for it, or is a lead supporter and organizing for it.
The clear difference in this race is that 4 of the candidates will all vote the same way in Speaker Boehner’s House, but only Carl has the consistent history of not just voting the right way, but organizing his colleagues (sometimes against Leadership and across party lines) to fight for progressive values.
Now, I know there are many BMGers who support other candidates. Let me say that I actually know most of the other candidates personally and really, really like them. I have friends working on other campaigns, too. But I’m supporting Carl and not staying neutral. And I’m going to go one step further and ask that if you support another candidate, you reconsider.
There is one obnoxious reason why: Ted Cruz. Ted Cruz? Yes. Ted Cruz.
Ted Cruz made a marathon 21 hour “filibuster” spouting right-wing nonsense (and sometimes just nonsense). I don’t have to tell you how Republicans in Congress are going farther and farther to the extreme. The shutdown gives plenty of evidence of that.
Electing Carl sends a clear message to Washington in support of progressive values. To truly fight the Tea Party, it’s not enough to talk about how extreme they are. You have to outline what you are for and lay out a broad, bold, progressive vision for the long term.
Only Carl has done that in this race. Example: while most candidates support the Affordable Care Act, Carl supports the ACA AND is working toward a single-payer system which is why he was endorsed by MassCare, the organization that fights for single-payer. It’s not that I think single-payer is going to happen any time soon. I am personally fighting to defend the Affordable Care Act. The point is that this primary is about more than this particular election; it’s about who we want for the long-term and what kind of vision they have in Congress.
Here’s the truth: If another candidate wins, he or she will be a reliable Democratic vote (excluding Brownsberger, who for some reason loves Keystone XL and Citizen’s United). Reliable Democratic votes are good. But getting a reliable Democratic vote AND electing a proven progressive leader is better. Please consider sending a true progressive leader to Washington by voting for Carl.
Also, have you seen his ad? I mean, really! It’s ADORABLE!
I hope you’ll join me in supporting Carl Sciortino for Congress.