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Tell House Democrats: Make Rep. Barbara Lee a caucus leader

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Petition to the House Democratic Caucus:

"Support progressive champion Rep. Barbara Lee for a Democratic Caucus leadership position in the next Congress."

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    Tell House Democrats: Make Rep. Barbara Lee a caucus leader

    In September 2001, every member of the House and Senate voted to give the president a blank check to fight endless wars. All except one, that is.1

    Progressive champion Rep. Barbara Lee stood alone and predicted that the war would expand and damage America's moral reputation.2

    In 2016, Rep. Lee ran for a House Democratic leadership position, but not enough of her colleagues supported her, and she fell just two votes shy.3 Now, she is running again – and we need to make sure her colleagues understand the need for her progressive leadership, support her candidacy and make her the first Black woman in the leadership of either Party.

    Tell House Democrats: Make Rep. Barbara Lee a caucus leader.

    Sen. Chuck Schumer's failure to unite Senate Democrats against Brett Kavanaugh shows the peril of having weak leaders. In the House, Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi recently endorsed sabotaging the Democratic agenda by announcing plans to match tax increases with spending – known as pay-go – even though Republicans never do the same when it comes to handouts for corporations and the wealthy.4 And though there is massive momentum to investigate and impeach Kavanaugh now that he is on the Supreme Court, Rep. Pelosi recently said that impeachment is off the table. 5

    We need stronger leadership in the House, and Rep. Barbara Lee is the perfect choice. She is:

    • A consistent progressive champion who supports bold yet commonsense ideas like Medicare for All and a living wage.6
    • A gutsy and principled representative who opposed the Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF) in 2001 despite knowing the backlash would lead to death threats.7
    • A proven leader who has led the Congressional Progressive Caucus and Congressional Black Caucus and been vice chair of the LGBT Equality Caucus.8
    • A consensus builder and doer who has worked across the aisle in support of progressive goals like repealing the AUMF or saving lives by pushing to increase HIV/AIDS federal funding under Bush.9

    As Rep. Lee put it: “It’s time. African-American women have been the smartest and most loyal voters for the Democratic Party, and often we don’t get the recognition or the involvement at the highest levels.”10

    Tell House Democrats: Make Rep. Barbara Lee a caucus leader.

    Rep. Lee has already announced her candidacy for chair of the House Democratic Caucus, the fourth-ranking position after Nancy Pelosi, Steny Hoyer, and James Clyburn. The position is open after corporate Democrat Joe Crowley lost to Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (who has floated Lee for Pelosi's job).11 We need to make our voices heard – and now, while representatives are still making up their minds.

    Tell House Democrats: Make Rep. Barbara Lee a caucus leader.

    Thank you for speaking out.

    References:

    1. Daniel Marans, "Barbara Lee’s Rise In The Democratic Party Would Be Another Coup For The Left," HuffPost, June 30, 2018.
    2. Ibid.
    3. Ibid.
    4. David Dayen, "Nancy Pelosi Promises That Democrats Will Handcuff the Democratic Agenda If They Retake the House," The Intercept, Sept. 4, 2018.
    5. Akela Lacy, "In letter to Trump, House Democrats promise to investigate Brett Kavanaugh for perjury if confirmed," The Intercept, Oct. 4, 2018.
    6. John Nichols, "Barbara Lee Would Make an Excellent Leader of House Democrats," The Nation, July 6, 2018.
    7. Ibid.
    8. Marans, "Barbara Lee’s Rise In The Democratic Party Would Be Another Coup For The Left."
    9. Nolan D. McCaskill, "Barbara Lee looks to seize her moment," Politico, July 28, 2018.
    10. Nichols, "Barbara Lee Would Make an Excellent Leader of House Democrats."
    11. Marans, "Barbara Lee’s Rise In The Democratic Party Would Be Another Coup For The Left."
    12. Ibid.