CA-46, FL-18: Progressive Challengers Rising
by Todd Beeton, Tue Oct 21, 2008 at 06:39:01 PM EDT
Back in July, I introduced two candidates who had made a real impression at Netroots Nation, Debbie Cook in CA-46 and Annette Taddeo in FL-18. Well, in keeping with their exceptional potential, now with two weeks to go, both of these challengers are seriously within striking distance of their entrenched Republican opponents. Updates on their races below:
- CA-46: I posted yesterday about Debbie Cook's fierce challenge to Dana Rohrabacher in this sleeper race down in Orange County, CA (a new GOP internal poll has Cook within the margin of error) and you guys delivered with some great fundraising love. Thanks for that.
Today was their one and only debate and I went down to see the train wreck that is Dana Rohrabacher for myself. But even though crazy Dana is always likely to say some crazy shit, and he did, what I took away from the debate most of all was how unabashedly progressive Debbie Cook is and how lucky we would be to have her in Congress. This is a fairly red (albeit getting bluer every day) district, one where you might expect the Democratic challenger to moderate her views for the electorate. Nope, not Debbie. I'll write about the debate more later, hopefully with video, but here are just three of the issues where Debbie shined today:
- On global warming, Cook, who is an energy expert, in response to Rohrabacher's global warming denier nonsense, asserted "The debate is over. I can't get into a discussion over climate change, to me it's just a fact, we need to move on to solving our oil depletion problems."
- On Proposition 8: "I strongly oppose Proposition 8, I am in favor of full marriage equality."
- And on healthcare reform, Cook advocated for a single-payer Medicare for all model. "Health care is a right every American should enjoy."
It's incredibly rare for Democrats running for congress, or anything, really, to be so overt about their progressive views, let alone in a red district. Reward good behavior and give to Debbie's campaign HERE.
- FL-18: Great news out of Southern Florida. While the DCCC launched an ad against the Diaz-Balart brothers leaving Bush rubber stamp Republican incumbent Ileana Ros-Lehtinen untouched, Barack Obama made sure to give a shout out to her rising progressive challenger, Annette Taddeo:
Speaking at his "jobs summit" in Palm Beach Community College, Barack Obama dropped Congressional hopeful Annette Taddeo's name.
He told the crowd she is a "future member of Congress -- as long as you guys turn out to vote!"
Taddeo was also greeted with some great news on the polling front from Lake Research Partners (June numbers in parentheses):
Taddeo: 41 (27)
Ros-Lehtinen: 48 (58)
Some incredible movement there. Swing State Project elaborates:
Taddeo has made a lot of progress, increasing her name recognition from 14% to 63%. With Democrats experiencing a remarkable voter registration surge in this district (cutting a 23,202 GOP registration advantage in 2006 down to a deficit of only 1,730 voters this year), Ros-Lehtinen could end up receiving a November surprise.
FL-18 is located in South Florida and includes parts of Miami Beach. It really should be a blue district and ever since I first met Annette in Austin and then interviewed her in Denver, I knew she would make this race competitive. Now, I know Debbie Wasserman Schultz has announced she won't be lifting a finger to defeat her best Bush rubber stamp buddies down there but I hope the DCCC uses some of its $15 million loan to support Taddeo in this race. You can support her HERE.