Washington, DC – More than three-quarters of the young progressive candidates for state and local offices endorsed by People For the American Way’s Young Elected Progressives program won their election bids on Tuesday, People For the American Way reported today. The Young Elected Progressives program, in its first year, endorsed 79 candidates in general elections in 28 states and the District of Columbia, with 60 winning their bids.
“We started this program to boost promising young progressives, many of them making their first bid for elected office,” said Randy Borntrager, Political Director of People For the American Way. “We’re helping to build a lasting movement by providing young progressives with the resources they need to start their careers in public service. We are thrilled that our endorsed candidates did so well on Tuesday, and are looking forward to growing and strengthening the program in future elections.”
Eighteen of the endorsed candidates, many in particularly close races, were given extra attention through the new "On the Way" program. Fourteen of those candidates were successful on Tuesday, including:
- Stefanie Mach, an alumna of affiliate PFAW Foundation’s advanced leadership programs, pulled out a victory in a hotly contested state House race in Tucson.
- State Sen. Angie Buhl of South Dakota won reelection to a second term representing Sioux Falls, where she has been a strong progressive leader.
- Cyrus Habib won a seat in the Washington state House, making him the first Iranian American elected to a state legislature.
- Jacob Candelaria became the first openly gay legislator in New Mexico, winning a state Senate seat representing Albuquerque.
- Steve Hansen of Sacramento is poised to win a seat on the City Council, his first elected office, ahead by just 28 votes.