7th Congressional District Rep. Pramila Jayapal spoke with over 100 constituents Thursday evening at The Summit on Pike as part of her ongoing efforts to get out the vote and boost campaign donations across the nation ahead of the November 6th midterm elections.
The Democrat spent the previous four days in four different states stumping for candidates challenging Republican incumbents including Ohio’s Aftab Pureval, the first Tibetan American running for U.S. Congress, and Kara Eastman in Nebraska. Jayapal was planning next to visit Los Angeles and New Mexico, among other places, to try to help boost chance of a Democratic majority in the House of Representatives following the critical midterm vote.
Jayapal said she was asked if she was exhausted. “I said ‘yeah, maybe, I haven’t really given myself the time to think about it’ because you know what, I will be more exhausted if we don’t flip the house,” Rep. Jayapal said. “So I’m going to do everything I can to flip the house.”
15 Things CHS heard at the ‘Don’t Agonize, Organize’ town hall
- Rep. Jayapal does not think of her platform as progressive. “These are centrist ideas in that they serve the center of the country,” she said. “Why should centrist mean serving the top 10 percent?”
- When prompted by an attendee, Rep. Jayapal said “I love the idea of a federal jobs guarantee,” referring to the idea pushed by progressives across the nation that every American should be entitled to a job that pays $15 per hour and includes benefits, such as health care and child care.
- Internal tracking polls show closer than expected races in Washington’s 3rd, 5th, and 8th Congressional races, according to Jayapal. The race between Kim Schrier and Dino Rossi is considered important for Democratic hopes of taking over the House.
- Rep. Jayapal will be canvassing for Carolyn Long, the Democrat running to unseat Republican Congresswoman Jaime Herrera Beutler in the 3rd Congressional District covering southwest Washington, on October 28.
- Constituents are concerned about the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report released this week. It says that we may have as few as 12 years to slash global emissions by 45 percent in order to truly affect climate change. “To me it’s a priority,” one woman said. “I know we gotta flip the house, but it just has to be at the top of the list in order to survive.”
- Along those same lines, Rep. Jayapal is a cosponsor “100 by ‘50 Act,” which lays out a roadmap for getting to 100% renewable energy by 2050. “Frankly, I think we should be able to do it sooner, but that is a reasonable goal for us to be putting out there,” the congresswoman, who has served since 2017, said.
- Rep. Jayapal is apparently working with the office of Sen. Bernie Sanders on a companion to his Medicare for All bill, which the former presidential candidate introduced last year.
- Rep. Jayapal is one of three co-founders of the Medicare for All Caucus, which has 78 members, to consolidate support for single-payer health care. It was launched in July 2018.
- In addition, she also co-founded the Medicare for All PAC last month. It will fund candidates who are passionately running with this plank on their platform. The PAC will be entirely funded by grassroots supporters.
- The crowd wanted more progressive candidates. “What can we do to make sure that the Democratic Party becomes more like you and less like some of the people that have no backbone,” one woman asked. Much of the crowd applauded this question.
- Rep. Jayapal has endorsed three initiatives that will appear on the ballots of Washington voters in November. Initiative 940 is aimed at improving police training. I-1631, if passed, would make Washington state the first in the nation to approve putting a price on pollution from fossil fuels. I-1639 would, among other things, increase the minimum age for purchasing semi-automatic rifles from 18 to 21.
- It was mentioned an exorbitant amount of times that the midterms are less than a month way. After each questioner, Rep. Jayapal led the crowd in a chant of “flip the House” and “flip the Senate.”
- To deter voter suppression, Rep. Jayapal announced that she supports elections that use only paper ballots. This was met by a nearly unanimous thumbs-up from the crowd.
- Over the course of the next few weeks, Rep. Jayapal’s campaign is hosting phone banks across the greater Seattle area to get out the vote for candidates like Kim Schrier.
- Rep. Jayapal wants everyone to know how important this election is. “When people say this is the most important election we’ve ever had, or at least maybe in some of our lifetimes, it really is,” the Congresswoman said.
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