Today, in a mailer to their entire listserv, the Council for a Livable World, one of the leading progressive foreign policy advocacy groups, endorsed Cal Cunningham in the U.S. Senate race in North Carolina. Chirs Coons, who is running against Rep. Mike Castle for Vice President Biden's former Senate seat in Delaware, also received their endorsement.
I cannot speak for the Delaware race, but as a life long North Carolinian who supports Cal Cunningham, this is the first in a series of endorsements Cal promised to roll out at his "Race to Victory" campaign kickoff this past Monday in Welcome, NC (Photos here). More than 500 people were reportedly on hand to see Cunningham publicly launch his campaign against Richard Burr.
The CLW endorsement is extremely important, as Burr is the Ranking Member of the Veterans Affairs Committee, where he has specialized in missing votes. And, when he does make time to attend, he casts votes against allowing sexually assualted government contractors to bring their persecutors to trial. Burr also voted right down the party line with George W. Bush to blindly vault our troops into an unnecessary war in Iraq, with no plan to pay for it or keep the peace.
Sensing the historical impact of this moment, CLW and others truly want to see Cal in the Senate, as he would be the first Iraq War veteran to serve in that chamber. According to his website, Cunningham "understands the importance of a robust national security program to the peace and security of our country." Check out all of Cal's ideas for moving North Carolina and the nation forward here.
In North Carolina, a heavily military concentrated state, foreign policy and national security issues will play a large part in deciding this race. By utilizing his unique military experience, leading on the issues and detailing to voters the impact war and peace has on our families -- Cunningham is building a rapport with concerned citizens and organizations that truly understand the leadership and passion he will bring to the U.S. Senate.
Below is the full text of the email CLW sent this morning. They are actively fundraising for Cal and many other progressive, intelligent voices for U.S. peace and security. This endorsement is a fitting conclusion to a week that saw Cal be the first Demcratic candidate from North Carolina in this election cycle pass 1,000 contributors on ActBlue and continue his rapid ascent in primary polling.
In November, there will be two true tests of whether the anti-Washington mood demonstrated by Scott Brown’s astounding upset in Massachusetts is directed at Washington, DC incumbents of both parties.
In North Carolina, Cal Cunningham (D) is challenging incumbent Sen. Richard Burr (R). The 36-year old challenger is a former State Senator and Captain in the U.S. Army Reserves who served a one-year tour in Iraq.
In Delaware, Chris Coons (D), the 44-year old New Castle County Executive, is running against nine-term House incumbent Mike Castle (R) for the open Senate seat formerly held by Vice President Joseph Biden. Coons now leads the county government responsible for more than two-thirds of the population of the state.
Both candidates start as underdogs but have serious chances to win their races.
During 2008, Cunningham served a one-year tour in Iraq and would be the first Iraq war veteran in the U.S. Senate. He earned a Bronze Star for cracking down on contractor crimes.
He is running against an incumbent with an approval rating under 40%. Burr, an unabashed supporter of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, eked out a victory in 2004 with just 52% of the vote. This close victory, combined with Burr’s lack of voter support, indicates a prime opportunity for a Democratic pick-up in the U.S. Senate.
We see a fantastic chance in progressive Democrat Cal Cunningham. Cunningham supports ratification of the New START nuclear reductions agreement and ratification of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty.
As a veteran and 11-year member of the Reserves, he endorses "a new doctrine that brings to bear the full power of the United States– including the so-called ‘soft’ powers of moral, legal, economic, diplomatic and cultural influence."
Cunningham poses a serious challenge to the unpopular Burr. However, he must first win the Democratic primary on May 4th and needs your help now.
Further north in Delaware, progressive Chris Coons is fighting to keep Joe Biden’s Senate seat in Democratic hands.
Coons first entered politics with an extensive background in foreign policy issues. He studied at the University of Nairobi, volunteered with the South African Council of Churches, worked in Kenyan relief efforts, and wrote reports on disinvestment from aparthied-dominated South Africa and rain forest destruction in Central America.
He supports ratification of the two key arms control treaties – both New START and the test ban treaty – and steps toward a world free of nuclear weapons.
Coons advocates "a robust, engaged foreign policy, based on diplomacy and strategic partnerships with other nations."
Please remember that your donation through the Council will be identified as one from a progressive advocate of arms control, and 100% of your candidate contribution goes directly to their campaigns.
Thank you for all you are doing,
John Isaacs and Guy Stevens