Progressive Group Announces Challenges to Dem Establishment
The Progressive Change Campaign Committee, prime mover in the U.S. Senate campaign of Elizabeth Warren and the bane of Blue Dog Democrats (and often the Democratic establishment) today announced its endorsements for three congressional primary contests. They include Annie Kuster, the progressive Democrat who, with PCCC's help, came within three points in 2010 of defeating Republican Charlie Bass, a brand name in New Hampshire politics. And Kuster did that after knocking "moderate" Democrat Katrina Swett -- another Granite-state brand name -- out of the race.
As New Hampshire's biggest news broadcaster, WMUR, put it:
Analysts said Kuster ran a strong grassroots campaign that led to her victory over a better-funded Katrina Swett in the primary.
Bass was running to regain the seat he lost in 2006. He had more name recognition that Kuster, who was unknown by 85 percent of voters in July, according to a poll.
This leaves Kuster well-poised to win Bass' seat (his approval ratings are sinking, according to aPPP poll), but it promises to be a bruising battle -- and her primary run will take place before the eyes of the national media, who will soon begin to mass in New Hampshire ahead of the state's first-in-the-nation presidential primary.
Other candidates endorsed by PCCC include, according to the organization's press release:
Ilya Sheyman (IL-10) -- running against Repub Rep. Bob Dold. Big progressive movement guy - former DFA and MoveOn staffer. Endorsed by MoveOn and Sheetmetal workers in last 24 hours. We have over 36,000 IL members.
Chris Donovan (CT-5) -- Speaker of the House running for Chris Murphy's open seat against more conservative Dem opponents. We have over 10,000 CT members.