Endorsements in the May 2018 Primary Election
Philadelphia Neighborhood has endorsed six great candidates in the May 15, 2018 Primary Election. These endorsements were based upon the strength of the candidates’ questionnaires and interviews, the Steering Committee’s enthusiastic support, and the overwhelming approval of our members.
We urge you to support them, not just with your votes, but with your activism. Click on any of the names of the candidates to learn more about them and how you can volunteer to help, or contribute.
Lieutenant Governor– Nina Ahmad
200thHouse District – Chris Rabb
184thHouse District – Elizabeth Fiedler
181stHouse District – Malcolm Kenyatta
177thHouse District – Joe Hohenstein
4thSenatorial District – Art Haywood (unopposed in the primary)
As detailed below, we believe that these six candidates are each fierce advocates of the progressive cause. We know that they will be more than just votes or voices for our shared values, but leaders in mobilizing their colleagues and their constituents to turn progressive ideas into policy and programs.
Lt. Governor: Nina Ahmad
Nina Ahmad has a proven track record of community involvement and working for progressive change. As Deputy Mayor for Public Engagement, she worked intensely with African-American males, women, youth, Asian Americans, Latinos, and other diverse groups, to make sure that every community has input in City policies and decisions that affect them. As the former President of Philadelphia NOW, she led the organization to recruit and support numerous women candidates for office and to turn its issue focus to women’s health care, and economic equity. If elected as Lt. Governor, her three main priorities will be to expand health care for all, provide quality public education for all children regardless of zip code, and fight mass incarceration both by ending the Board of Pardons’ three year backlog, and working with the legislature to make clemency easier to achieve.
Nina, a scientist, immigrant, and community leader, intends to use her office as a bully pulpit and a fulcrum for community involvement by, among other things, organizing an array of community events around issues of special importance to underserved communities, and engaging those communities in planning and execution every step along the way. As the only women of color running for statewide office, she would be a smart, unique voice committed to elevate justice issues throughout the Commonwealth.
200thPA House District: Chris Rabb
In the short time he’s been in office, Chris Rabb has established himself as the go-to-guy for virtually every progressive cause that needs a champion in Harrisburg. Running as an “out-progressive” in 2016, he has fully justified that self-identification. Remarkably for a left of center legislator, Rabb has actually gotten two of his proposals passed into law through the Republican dominated legislature, a bill offering micro-loans to worker co-ops, and a fund to finance support services to youth in communities suffering high rates of incarceration.
Other bills that Rabb has introduced would make far-ranging improvements in ballot-access, have PA join the state compact which would elect the President by popular vote, abolish the death penalty, commit PA to 100% renewable energy by 2050, make PA a sanctuary state, increase the minimum wage to $15/hr, raise school funding by taxing the wealthy, protect undocumented and transgendered women from discrimination in provision of health care. And there is much more. Chris fully deserves our support.
184thPA House District: Elizabeth Fiedler
Elizabeth Fiedler, a former WHYY reporter known for her insightful commentary on local politics and community affairs, is coupling her considerable energy and knowledge with her commitment to raise vital issues of concern to the progressive community. Her particular focus is to fight for an economy that works for all of us – not just the richest few and corporate interests. Once elected, her specific legislative priorities will include ensuring every person has high quality, free healthcare; protecting the rights of workers by expanding union rights; ensuring every child has an equitably funded education; and protecting our climate, water, and air. Demonstrating the robustness of her vision and her great communication skills, Fiedler has put together a strong field operation with several hundred volunteers to canvass and engage voters throughout her district. She will be an articulate and knowledgeable representative on behalf of marginalized communities – a much needed new progressive voice in Harrisburg.
181stPA House District: Malcolm Kenyatta
Malcolm Kenyatta is a grass roots activist committed to improving public schools, and bringing better jobs and opportunities to his North Philly District where he has lived his entire life. He speaks to the issues of deep poverty and racism that affect his legislative district in an authentic and compelling voice, focusing especially hard on ways to confront the displacement of seniors and low income people due to gentrification and development. He has built a broad base of support including endorsements from the labor, women, and LGBT communities, and intends to collaborate closely with activist groups once elected to get things done. His energy, commitment, and experience make him well suited to be an outstanding representative for his legislative district.
177thPA House District: Joe Hohenstein
Joe Hohenstein has been for years deeply involved with local issues important to him and his community and is deeply committed toa government that benefits all of us, not just those in power, i.e., his belief in progressivism. His top issues involve fighting for a fair funding formula for public schools, taxing the fracking industry to help pay for schools, and freezing approval of new charter schools while holding existing ones accountable. Additionally, he believes corporations should not dodge their tax obligations with incorporation gimmicks and must pay their fair share into the state budget. He’s dedicated to women’s rights, strengthening families by ensuring businesses provide paid leave, requiring that the state provide affordable quality child care & that the minimum wage be raised to $15/hour.
Fourth Senatorial District: Art Haywood
Art Haywood has a proven track record of being a leader on crucial legislation in Harrisburg, supporting progressive issues, and spearheading the coalition to Turn PA Blue. During Senator Haywood’s first term in office, he sponsored legislation to raise the minimum wage to $15 per hour and to increase funds for public education with a severance tax on national gas drillers. He hosted the first annual Gun Violence Awareness Day in the capitol in June 2015 and is a champion for gun violence prevention. He also sponsored legislationcalling for single-payer health care to ensure every Pennsylvanian has access toaffordable, quality care. Art has established himself as the “go to guy” in the Senate for virtually every progressive activist group in the City.