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Progressive Working Families Party backs candidate to replace Rep. Ruben Gallego

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The PAM said it was the first step in expanding the six congressional Democrats it endorsed midterm, including the first Gen Z member of Congress, Maxwell Frost (D-Fla.). The organization supports candidates with grassroots organizing experience and genuine connections to their districts.

Terán’s endorsement shows the Working Families Party’s willingness to compete for secure Democratic seats and signals that there are more endorsements in the works.

“We want to take over the house. It’s a non-negotiable. But we also want to get applicants from House with Working Families back,” Salgado said. “We are delighted to do so and we are particularly proud to start the 2024 electoral season with the endorsement of a candidate like Raquel Terán.”

Terán, a current Arizona state senator, was also a labor organizer and immigration reform advocate, who opposed the “show me your papers” law that has been criticized by Democrats as unfairly targeting Latinos in Arizona, including those legally in the country. The law was challenged in court and upheld in part by the Supreme Court. Terán also led a successful effort to recall the state legislator who drafted this law.

“For us, that’s who we’re going to be this cycle. These are the types of candidates we will put all our strength behind, women of color who have a reputation for winning and who believe in the values ​​we believe in,” Salgado said.

Terán is the first endorsement of the national branch of the Working Families Party. The California chapter also endorsed Lateefah Simon in California’s 12th District, currently held by Rep. Barbara Leecandidate for the United States Senate.

Arizona’s 3rd District is a secure Democratic seat that Gallego won with more than 70% of the vote in 2022, so the 2024 primary battle is already underway. In a five-way race that could expand further, Phoenix Vice Mayor Yassamin Ansari is leading the charge when it comes to fundraising.

It’s a familiar dynamic for the Working Families Party. Candidates who gain PAM endorsement, a progressive seal of approval, are often overtaken – usually by opponents seen as more moderate. And when considering outside spending, WFP-backed candidates are also often spent.

In 2022, the Working Families Party was passed in several primary races by moderate, pro-Israel Super PACs, such as the United Democracy Project and Democratic Majority for Israel. representing summer lee (D-Pa.) secured an $800,000 investment from the Working Families Party, but faced more than $4 million in outside spending from groups opposed to his candidacy, according to Open Secrets.

Holders approved by WFP in 2022, such as Ilhan Omar and Andy Levin, also had to deal with large outside expenses in their midterm primary elections. Omar (D-Minn.) won by about 2 points, while Levin, of Michigan, lost by 19.

“I think the David versus Goliath fight is one we’ve always been willing, ready and able to engage in,” Salgado said. “We understand the role of money and the necessity and importance of money, so it’s not about underestimating that. But we also know that money doesn’t allow you to go all the way.

Jessica Cisneros, another PAM-backed candidate, lost in Texas to Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-Texas) by less than 300 votes, and in Oregon, progressive Jamie McLeod-Skinner lost to Republican Lori Chavez-DeRemer by about 1 point.

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Cnn

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