Endorsements: Six Young Candidates Who Can Help Change Politics

LaunchProgress Endorses Six Candidates Running for State Office in North Carolina and Ohio, Where Less than 10 Percent of Legislators are 35 or Under

For Immediate Release: July 22, 2014

Contact: Poy Winichakul or Erik Opsal (launchprogresspress@gmail.com)
 
Washington, DC – LaunchProgress today endorsed six young progressive candidates running for state office in North Carolina and Ohio — the latest in a series of endorsements to help build a new foundation of national progressive leaders.
 
LaunchProgress PAC supports candidates aged 18-35 running for state or local office, specifically elevating the kind of candidates our political system may not traditionally support, including women, people of color, people from lower-income families, and people who are disabled.
 
In 2014, LaunchProgress is supporting candidates in MichiganNorth Carolina, and Ohio. These three battleground states — recently targeted by the Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee — have quickly changing demographics and a thirst for new progressive leadership. Today’s endorsements come a few months after supporting four young candidates running for Michigan State House. All 10 endorsees will be highlighted at a July 29 event in Washington, D.C. featuring Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard.
 
“America is changing rapidly and becoming increasingly diverse. That’s why we’re investing in these young, ambitious candidates who represent that changing America,” said Poy Winichakul and Luke Squire, co-founders and co-directors of LaunchProgress PAC. “Our generation has a lot riding on the next few decades. With dysfunction and discord at an all-time high, government needs problem-solvers. These six candidates are committed to tackling our nation’s most important issues and changing how government works. By investing in this generation, we can build a better future for all Americans.”
 
Our Candidates
 
Less than 10 percent of legislators in both the North Carolina and Ohio legislatures are age 35 or younger. Women currently make up just 22 percent of legislators in North Carolina and 23.5 percent in Ohio. LaunchProgress’s candidates would change that.

  • Cecil Brockman (North Carolina, 60th House District) would increase the number of young people of color in the general assembly.
  • Christie Bryant (Ohio, 32nd House District) would increase the number of young women of color in the legislature. The 99-member House currently has only 6 representatives age 35 or under, and 23 women.
  • Sarah Crawford (North Carolina, 18th Senate District) would increase the number of young women in the state senate. The 50-member Senate currently has only 8 women.
  • Micah Kamrass (Ohio, 28th House District) would increase the number of young people in state office.
  • Marcus Madison (Ohio, 13th Senate District) would increase the number of young people of color in the legislature. Just 3 of 33 senators are age 35 or under.
  • Uriah Ward (North Carolina, 9th House District) would increase the number of young people in state office.

“I feel strongly about serving the community that helped raise me. I am running for the North Carolina House because our legislature is currently letting the citizens of this state down,” said Cecil Brockman, candidate for North Carolina’s 60th House District. “I want to work to make sure we are making investments in education, paying our workers a living wage, and ensuring all our citizens have proper health care. The endorsement of LaunchProgress will help me achieve these goals and begin to move North Carolina forward again.”
 
“I believe in an Ohio where workers are paid a good wage, where children can attend good schools — regardless of their zip code — and where families can live the American Dream,” said Christie Bryant, candidate for Ohio’s 32nd House District. “I want to live in an Ohio where voting is encouraged and citizens feel empowered. I believe young progressive leaders are an essential component to accomplishing my vision in Ohio and I am honored LaunchProgress selected my campaign as one that can make a difference along with so many other impressive candidates across the country.”
 
“I am running for State Senate because I know that there is great opportunity in North Carolina,” said Sarah Crawford, candidate for North Carolina’s 18th Senate District. “My family moved here when I was 11 to ensure that my brother and I received a great public education and had opportunities for success growing up. I am dedicated to working every day to ensure that the same holds true for my daughters and all families across this state. I am so thankful for the support of groups like LaunchProgress. With this continued momentum we can work together to restore balance here in North Carolina.”
 
“I’m running for State Representative because Ohio’s legislature continues to be distracted refighting last generation’s battles, and it continues to ignore this generation’s challenges,” said Micah Kamrass, candidate for Ohio’s 28th House District. “I am grateful for the endorsement of LaunchProgress, because they share my commitment to strong public schools, to safe local communities, and to creating 21st century jobs.”
 
“My campaign for the State Senate is fundamentally about creating opportunities for children and working families in Ohio,” said Marcus Madison, candidate for Ohio’s 13th Senate District. “As a State Senator, I pledge to work to build stronger communities, improve public schools, and protect the workers of Ohio. I am proud to have earned the support of LaunchProgress, because it means I can join a growing base of future national leaders committed to making a difference in their communities.”
 
“I was born and raised in Pitt County and care deeply about this community. I’m running for North Carolina House because I know first-hand what it’s like to come up through a neglected public school system,” said Uriah Ward, candidate for North Carolina’s 9th House District. “Every single child deserves the opportunity to learn, to grow, and to make something amazing of themselves. Their future, and our future as a state, depends upon our public schools. I’m proud to have earned the support of LaunchProgress, and I’m excited to work with my fellow endorsees, in North Carolina and across the nation, to turn the tide and implement good policy.”
 
Founded in 2014, LaunchProgress PAC invests in young, ambitious candidates to build a new foundation of national progressive leaders and a progressive platform that will ripple changes far beyond a single election. Our candidates are dedicated to tackling the most important issues the country will face in the coming decades, including election reform, equality, education, and individual liberty and security.
 
This year, we are supporting candidates in Michigan and Ohio through LaunchProgress PAC, and in North Carolina through LaunchProgress PAC North Carolina. Of our 10 total candidates, 5 are people of color and 5 are women.
 
For more information on LaunchProgress PAC and our candidates, visit www.launchprogresspac.org.

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