Will Dems Elect a Republican?

Mayoral candidate Cathy Murillo gets support from iconic labor leader and civil rights activist Dolores Huerta and a couple others at an October 27 rally before City Hall.
Paul Wellman

If you’re progressive, you may be seriously concerned that split endorsements will elect a deeply conservative candidate who admittedly doesn’t believe in climate change — here in Santa Barbara, the birthplace of Earth Day. Currently, based on the only poll available to us as voters — Cathy Murillo is the Democratic front-runner. We need to rally around her candidacy.

The wisdom of three progressive candidates dividing the field has always been suspect, a serious indication of Party Politics trumping public good. Party leaders and the press — however well-meaning — have further split the progressive vote with divergent endorsements. The worst outcome may become reality — that even with a majority of votes cast for a progressive Democrat — we may elect an unpopular conservative candidate. This is a stain on the Democratic Party’s process and potentially fatal disunity. It’s everyone’s right to vote and endorse how they see fit. But our responsibility is to adjust to the reality of the times to hold our values above one chosen candidate. This is not about some antiquated idea of “taking one for the team.” It’s about an awareness of how the electoral process works now — in our day and time.

This is the new reality. Conservatives have forsaken truly constructive conservative principles. Democrats, progressives, liberals — whatever we may call ourselves — must rally around a front-runner. We will be facing situations like these in our state, county, and country’s elections over and over again. We need to step up for the benefit of everyone — not just narrow party interests. Vote now for the progressive front-runner — Cathy Murillo. Make this election a statement of unity. Unity is a matter of survival.

Mitchell Kriegman and Sus Nagy write on behalf of the Indivisible Santa Barbara Steering Committee.


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