Pennsylvania's Liberal Lion opens up in his latest ad:


State Sen. Daylin Leach, 51, a Main Line Democrat, is fighting a lone-wolf campaign to legalize marijuana in Pennsylvania, a cause even he says has not caught fire. To him, it makes no sense to spend a quarter-billion dollars to arrest and convict 25,000 people each year in Pa.
When competing political candidates agree on a lot of policy issues, they seek to distinguish themselves in other ways, perhaps by presenting a compelling personal narrative.

So it's hardly surprising that the first TV ad (above) in the battle to succeed U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz opens with the story of state Sen. Daylin Leach's childhood hardships in Northeast Philadelphia, an experience he sometimes refers to as "Dickensian."

Leach's father left his mother before he was born, and Leach's mom struggled to raise her son. When her own mother got sick, and she stayed home to care for her, Leach's mother put the kids into foster care.

"I remember the day my mom said she could no longer afford to keep me.I grew up in foster homes across Northeast Philly," Leach says in the TV ad's voice-over, while the images show a young man getting the bad news from his mom and dropping his suitcase in despair.

The young Daylin in the ad is actually Leach's 11-year old son, Justin. Leach's campaign finance director, Meghan Lane, plays his mom.

Leach told me the experience of being in the homes of strangers made him a tougher, more determined and resilient person, and taught him the importance of having institutions that can lend a hand to those in need. Leach said his foster parents were "not particularly nice people."

"I was beaten at a number of the foster homes," Leach said. "At one of the foster homes, there was three natural children and three foster children, and the three natural children each had their own room. The foster children all stayed in a small room. And there would be two separate dinners. There would be a dinner for the natural children, and then the foster kids would get basically like a potato." - Newsworks, 4/22/14

Here's a little more info


Present-day Leach then appears, and talks about how he wants to use his rough and tumble experiences as a child to help others who may also be in a tough situation. “I’ve never been afraid to take on bullies like Governor Corbett and the NRA,” he says. Leach’s mention of the National Rifle Association refers to the “F” rating that the interest group bestowed upon him for his support of gun control.

“In Congress, I’ll protect social security,” Leach continues, “and a woman’s right to choose. I’ll fight for good schools and great jobs, and to put Wall Street crooks in jail.”

The ad ends with a shot, perhaps meant to tug at the heartstrings, of Leach surrounded by happy-looking children. The rowdy bunch gives an excited cheer as Leach wraps up his ad with the promise to help those who need it because he was also once in a situation where he needed help.

This is Leach’s first television ad, to be run on broadcast and cable television, as well as over the Internet. The ad comes on the heels of a successful first quarter for the candidate, where his fundraising efforts landed him on the list of PoliticsPA’s Q1 winners. Leach is the first candidate in the PA-13 race to air a commercial on broadcast television. - Politics PA, 4/22/14

It's a great ad because it gives voters an idea of who Leach really is and how he can connect with them through his own personal experiences.  In a crowded primary, this ad makes Leach look like truest Democrat running in this race.  In other good news, Leach received a big endorsement:


Pennsylvania's largest teachers union has endorsed state Sen. Daylin Leach in the Democratic primary for the 13th Congressional District.

The Pennsylvania State Education Association and the National Education Association are backing Leach over three other Democrats vying for the seat being vacated by Rep. Allyson Y. Schwartz.

The district straddles southern Montgomery County and Northeast Philadelphia. In a poll this summer, education topped the list of concerns for Philadelphia voters.

PSEA, a multimillion-dollar political machine, has 5,600 members in the 13th District, Leach's campaign said in a news release Monday. - Philly.com, 4/15/14

And Leach has continued his fight to get medical marijuana legalized in Pennsylvania:


State Senator Daylin Leach knows he is fighting an uphill battle to win legalization of marijuana for adult use in Pennsylvania. But Leach is confident that the need for new state revenue will convince his colleagues in the state legislature that the time is ripe to change Pennsylvania’s position on marijuana prohibition.

“I think revenue from taxing legal and medical marijuana will drive this issue just like revenue drove approval for gambling,” Leach said.

“Remember, 40 years ago only one state had gambling. Now 48 states including Pennsylvania have gambling. What drove approvals of gambling was the money to be made by the states.”

California, for example, generates annual sales tax revenues of up to $105-million from medical use of marijuana, according to the California State Board of Equalization. That Board estimated that California could gain $1.4-billion in new revenue annually from the legalization of marijuana.

Colorado, which began sales of marijuana for non-medical adult use on New Year’s Day this year, collected $6.17-million in tax revenue during January and February alone. Officials in Washington State, which beings adult use marijuana sales in July, project receipt of $190-million in taxes and fees annually.

“Between new tax revenue and saving money now spent on enforcement we could have $500-million per year,” Leach said. “Imagine what we can do with that.” - This Can't Be Happening, 4/19/14

Lets help Leach keep this ad on the air so he can win the primary and go on to Congress.  Click here to donate to his campaign:

Originally posted to pdc on Tue Apr 22, 2014 at 02:00 PM PDT.

Also republished by Philly Kos, DKos Pennsylvania, Firearms Law and Policy, Repeal or Amend the Second Amendment (RASA), Shut Down the NRA, Social Security Defenders, In Support of Labor and Unions, The Democratic Wing of the Democratic Party, and DKos Cannabis Law and Drug War Reform.

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