Fresh on the heels of Working Families’ national endorsement of Bernie Sanders for President, another big national organization is launching its people-driven endorsement process. Democracy for America (DFA) is asking its more than 1 million members across the country to vote their choice for president among (alphabetical) Hillary Clinton, Martin O’Malley and Bernie Sanders. Just like in 2007, the bar for DFA’s endorsement is set very high – a supermajority threshold of 67%, DFA will not endorse. DFA was founded out of the 2004 presidential primary, but as a national organization has never endorsed in a contested presidential primary. In 2007, no candidate reached that high bar.
To level the playing field, DFA’s randomizing the daily order in which DFA members receive these emails and sending each candidate’s message to an equal number of recipients. Below, you can read the pitches made by Martin O’Malley and Hillary Clinton. I can’t show you Bernie Sanders’ yet, because I haven’t gotten it yet. When I do, I’ll print it. After you’ve voted, share this with progressive & Dem friends. Vote as many times as you want, if you change your mind. But only your last vote will count.
Blue Jerseyans, you’re exactly the sort of people DFA is interested in hearing from. The endorsement vote is live right now and will end at 10:59pm Central Time on Tuesday, December 15.
Note: Hillary Clinton’s pitch came with a forward from Clinton campaign surrogate Gov. Howard Dean recommending his friend for your endorsement. I have decided not to include it here. Given that Dean signed his message as DFA Founder, I thought the add-on unfairly prejudiced the otherwise open nature of the vote. So, these are Hillary Clinton’s words, and below them, Martin O’Malley’s:
I want to thank you for your involvement in Democracy for America, and for taking the time to be thoughtful and engaged in our democracy. I’m excited for all that we’re going to accomplish together during the course of this campaign, and I’m really looking forward to all the good we can do if I’m elected president.
I’ve said before that I’m a progressive who likes to get things done. So I want to talk to you about the things I’d like to accomplish in the White House.
First, I’ll work to make sure all Americans are treated fairly — no matter what you look like, where you live, or who you love. I’m going to fight hard for racial justice in this country: The first speech of my campaign was about ending mass incarceration, and I want to require body cameras for every police force in America. I support a pathway to citizenship for immigrants. I want to make sure everyone earns equal pay — an issue that disproportionately affects women of color. And I’ll work to make sure LGBT Americans finally have equal protection under the law, especially trans Americans, whose needs are too often ignored.
I’m going to raise wages for the middle class. I believe this is the defining challenge of our time. I’m the only Democrat in this race who’s pledged not to raise taxes on families making less than $250,000 per year, and I have a comprehensive plan to grow small businesses, make health care and college more affordable, and give employees a chance to share in their companies’ profits just like shareholders do.
I’ll also work to bring the best of American values — equality, justice, and innovation — to tackle our biggest global challenges, whether that’s climate change or the Syrian refugee crisis. When I was Secretary of State, I brought leaders to the table on issues like girls’ education and LGBT rights in countries where those issues had previously been non-starters — that’s how you make progress. I hope to continue that work as president.
Finally, I want to make sure that my term in office would ensure a strong progressive legacy for decades to come. That means appointing the right judges to the Supreme Court and the federal bench, and it means protecting voting rights and overhauling campaign finance law to ensure that people — not corporations — are choosing our leaders. I’m going to get corporate money out of our electoral system, even if that means a Constitutional amendment to overturn Citizens United.
We all know I’m not afraid to go after Republicans when I need to, but I’m also not afraid to roll up my sleeves and do the hard work of getting unlikely allies to join coalitions. I did that as first lady when I fought for the Children’s Health Insurance Program (which still covers 8 million kids today), as a senator when I got health care for 9/11 first responders, and as Secretary of State when I convened a global coalition to bring sanctions against Iran.
I take a backseat to no one when you look at my record in standing up and fighting for progressive values. The plans I’ve outlined above aren’t rhetoric; they’re a concrete outline of what I will do everything in my power to accomplish if I’m elected president.
Thank you for giving me the opportunity to earn your support. I promise that if I’m elected, I’ll keep working for it every single day I’m in office.
With deep appreciation,
My name is Martin O’Malley — I’m the former Mayor of Baltimore and the former Governor of Maryland. I’m a life-long Democrat who is running for President to rebuild the truth of the American dream that you and I share and to build upon the progress made under President Barack Obama.
With fifteen years of executive experience, I have learned how to be a very effective leader. I have learned how to get things done. In Maryland, I made it easier — not harder — for workers to bargain collectively for better wages for all of us. Instead of cutting public education funding, we made our public schools the best public schools in America for five years in a row.
As governor, I brought people together to pass the Dream Act, to pass Marriage Equality, and to pass the most comprehensive gun safety legislation in the nation with background checks and a ban on the sale of combat assault weapons!
As a member of Democracy for America, you are part of an organized, grassroots movement that believes our country best moves forward when progressives are elected up and down the ticket. You grew tired of politicians who talked a big game, but were never able to deliver because they were beholden to powerful special interests.
Talking about progressive ideas on the campaign trail is one thing. Taking action when elected is what really matters, and I have proven that I am able to do so, while achieving progressive results.
Over the summer, I put forward 15 goals to rebuild the American Dream. I want to make the option of debt free college a reality within 5 years, expand Social Security, move America forward to a 100% clean electric energy grid by 2050, and create 5 million new jobs along the way.
Nothing you and I care about can be accomplished by words alone. We must take action. We must not resort to the worn out politics of the past. We must find our backbone again to stand up for what is best for our country and what is best for all Americans.
I have never represented Wall Street, and I sure as hell won’t be taking economic orders from the big banks of Wall Street when I’m in your White House. And as your President, I will have the independence and the backbone to fight for you: If a bank is too big to fail, too big to jail, and too big to manage, then it’s too damn big, and it needs to be broken up before it breaks our national economy once again!
We must also have the courage to put our children’s safety and public safety — each and every day — ahead of the craven and morally bankrupt interests of the National Rifle Association.
We’re not going to make our economy work again for all of us by trying to scrap capitalism and replace it with socialism. Nor are we going to make our economy work by turning a blind eye to criminal behavior on Wall Street, or by taking our orders from the big banks and submitting to the sort of crony capitalism that has wages declining for 70% of us — creating an economy of the few, by the few, and for the few.
There is a better way. And that is the way forward. We need new leadership that can forge a new consensus to rebuild the American dream.