Metro Weekly

Pete Buttigieg endorses 54 Democrats seeking office this November

Most endorsees are incumbents running in competitive states or districts.

Pete Buttigieg – Photo: Gage Skidmore.

Win the Era, a political action committee started by former Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg, has endorsed a slate of 54 Democrats seeking public office at various levels ahead of November’s general election.

In a fundraising email sent to supporters, Buttigieg wrote: “The story of 2020 is not yet fully written. This year has been challenging in ways we never could have predicted even a short while ago. But I believe we still have the power to write the last, and most important, pages in the story of 2020 as we envision the era that is about to begin. 

“This election is our chance to ensure representative leadership that actually reflects the country we live in today. It’s our chance to change what is considered possible in traditionally ‘Red’ states and districts. And it’s our chance to show that we are ready for new leadership at every level of government. We are ready to elect bold, progressive candidates who will deliver solutions to the biggest challenges we face — from easing the financial burdens on families in times of hardship and expanding health care to every American, to finally tackling systemic racism and reversing the disastrous effects of climate change before it’s too late.”

Thirty-two of the candidates endorsed by Win the Era PAC and Action Fund are running for federal office. That list includes seven Democratic Senate nominees in traditionally Republican-leaning states: Cal Cunningham of North Carolina, Jamie Harrison of South Carolina, MJ Hegar of Texas, Theresa Greenfield of Iowa, Marquita Bradshaw of Tennessee, John Ossoff, of Georgia, and Raphael Warnock, who is running in an open special election for Georgia’s other Senate seat — which, due to the “free-for-all” setup of that election, is likely to head to a runoff between the top-two vote-getters in December.

Win the Era’s endorsed candidates run the full length of the ideological spectrum from progressives to conservative Democrats, although the bulk of the endorsees, particularly incumbents, would be categorized as moderates or center-left liberals. 

According to its website, Win the Era PAC and Action Fund seeks to “lift up the values that bring the American people together.” Some of the endorsees are running historic campaigns that will bring added diversity to public office. 

Among the candidates endorsed are incumbent U.S. Reps. Don Beyer (Va.), Ann McLane Kuster (N.H.), Kathleen Rice (N.Y.), Andy Kim (N.J.), and Anthony Brown (Md.), all of whom endorsed Buttigieg’s bid for the presidency, as well as five others who did not: Reps. Elissa Slotkin (Mich.), Colin Allred (Texas), Sharice Davids (Kansas), Lauren Underwood (Ill.), and Lucy McBath (Ga.). All represent competitive districts except Brown and Beyer. 

See also: Human Rights Campaign makes congressional endorsements ahead of November’s election

Among non-incumbents seeking office, the PAC has endorsed Virginia’s Cameron Webb, running for an open seat in western Virginia against staunch social conservative Bob Good, who challenged and successfully defeated incumbent Rep. Denver Riggleman in the Republican primary convention, in part because Riggleman officiated the wedding of two gay former campaign volunteers.

Others on the list include Georgia State Sen. Nikema Williams, who is seeking the Atlanta-based congressional seat of the recently departed civil rights leader U.S. Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.); Qasim Reed, a candidate running in Virginia’s 1st congressional district, which includes parts of Stafford County and the D.C. exurbs; openly LGBTQ candidates Mondaire Jones and Ritchie Torres of New York and Gina Ortiz Jones of Texas; and Candace Valenzuela, a school board member running for an open House seat in Texas that has been a longtime Republican stronghold but is politically realigning, with a majority of voters preferring 2018 Democratic nominee Beto O’Rourke over incumbent Republican Sen. Ted Cruz.

Buttigieg also endorsed several candidates for statewide office or state legislature, most in states or districts that are politically competitive, including North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper, North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein, and Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro. He also endorsed Richmond (Va.) Mayor Levar Stoney, openly gay Pennsylvania State Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta (D-Philadelphia), and Sarah McBride, a Democrat seeking a Delaware State Senate seat who could soon become the nation’s highest-ranking transgender official.

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John Riley is the local news reporter for Metro Weekly. He can be reached at jriley@metroweekly.com

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