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Indivisible’s Statement on McLeod-Skinner Victory in Oregon’s 5th District Primary Election

05/24/2022

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 24, 2022
Contact: Emily Phelps | press@indivisible.org

Washington, D.C. — Today, Indivisible’s Co-Founder and Co-Executive Director Leah Greenberg released the following statement on Jamie McLeod-Skinner’s victory over Representative Kurt Schrader in Oregon’s 5th Congressional District’s primary election:

“Jamie McLeod-Skinner’s victory is monumental. It’s a victory for the organizers, activists, and people of Oregon’s 5th district, who proved that no flood of corporate cash could drown out their voices. And it demonstrates that the days of Democrats who legislate on behalf of corporate interests and count on dark money to carry them to victory are numbered.

“Indivisibles spent years pushing Kurt Schrader to step up and lead. They met with his staff. They held rallies outside his office. They did everything they could to urge him to embrace aggressive prescription drug reform and the Build Back Better agenda. But Schrader refused to listen. Again and again, he prioritized his corporate donors over his constituents. He believed that he could stop listening, stop showing up, and rely on a mountain of outside money to keep his seat. He was wrong.

“From the start, the odds were stacked in Schrader’s favor – he had the incumbent name recognition and financial resources to flood local TV stations with misleading ads, and support from the corporate establishment in Washington. Leading up to the primary, outside groups spent over 2.3 million dollars trying to keep Schrader in office – nearly 10 times what was spent for McLeod-Skinner.

“But even with Schrader’s significant starting advantage, the people of Oregon’s 5th Congressional District did not forget Schrader’s obstruction of Biden’s recovery package, and channeled that frustration into helping elect Jamie McLeod-Skinner – a progressive candidate who inspires, resonates, and bridges the entire district of OR-5. 

“Jamie won because of her ability to connect with voters and build a uniquely strong network of supporters – from a groundswell of excited activists to four of the six county Democratic parties in Oregon’s 5th district, and a slate of local editorial boards and major unions. Jamie’s support spans across her district, and she has been celebrated as a rural democrat who is well-equipped to bridge the rural-urban divide. 

“Corporate PACs and their beneficiaries within the establishment have seen the growing progressive power in Congress – that’s why they are eager to bat for an incumbent Democrat in a supposedly purple district like Kurt Schrader. They are intimidated by the force behind progressives, and they’re probably watching the results in horror. 

“From Summer Lee to Jamie McLeod’s victories, this week’s primary results show that Democrats are hungry for a Democratic party that’s ferocious in its defense of our values and committed to delivering on its promises. A party of fighters. 

“Our momentum will continue to grow until it cracks the pipeline that siphons corporate money into our elections, and voters no longer have to fight against seemingly insurmountable odds for representation.

Finally, we wish Kurt Schrader all the best in his future career as a Big Pharma lobbyist.”

Indivisible Groups’ Impact in Oregon’s 5th Congressional District:

Indivisible first endorsed Jamie McLeod-Skinner during her 2018 run for Congress, and Oregon’s Indivisible groups have been supporters of her campaign from beginning to end. 

Since August, Indivisibles in the district have been spreading local public awareness and outrage around Schrader’s record on prescription drugs. Throughout the Summer and Fall of 2021, Indivisibles protested outside Schrader’s district office. In addition to a series of protests, letters to the editor, and social media blitzes, activists built a cross-movement network that sent coalition letters to Schrader

In this cycle, over 50 Indivisible groups around the state publicly supported McLeod-Skinner. Indivisibles have made over 114,000 voter contact attempts and knocked on hundreds of doors. They have published countless letter to the editor and op-eds throughout, explaining the nuances of the race to their fellow OR-5 constituents.  

Contact
Indivisible Clackamas CD-5 
Elizabeth Luthy
elizabethluthy@gmail.com 

Indivisible Sisters
Mary Chaffin 
mary.d.chaffin@gmail.com
 

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ABOUT INDIVISIBLE ACTION

Indivisible Action (PAC) channels grassroots energy into electing progressive candidates who will work towards an inclusive democracy that provides for the needs of all people. Indivisible Action provides tools, training and strategic guidance to local Indivisible groups as they flex their electoral power. Indivisible Action also makes its own endorsements of federal and gubernatorial candidates, grounded in endorsements made by local Indivisible activists.