It’s not hard to see that the Democratic Party is deeply fractured. Even so, Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s decision to endorse two far-left primary challengers to Democratic representatives in Congress is sure to cause further damage to what’s left of the party’s unity.
The two candidates in question are progressive activists hoping to unseat fairly moderate Democrats in Illinois and Texas. Marie Newman, a marketing consultant in Chicago hopes to unseat Rep. Dan Lipinski. Jessica Cisneros, an immigration attorney in Texas, is running to unseat Rep. Henry Cuellar. Both upstarts have the support of Justice Democrats, the same organization that helped Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez get elected.
It makes sense for Warren to lend her political muscle to these candidates. Both women are far-left progressives, and their platform includes Medicare for All, full support for the “right” to murder an unborn child, gun control, and support for the Green New Deal.
Incumbent Rep. Dan Lipinski, on the other hand, is one of the few pro-life Democrats left in the House of Representatives. Fellow incumbent Rep. Henry Cuellar has a low rating from pro-abortion advocates, and has opposed gun control efforts. Nonetheless, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has already made it clear that it will not support insurgents who attempt to snatch seats from incumbent Democrats.
In fact, the DCCC has already committed itself to supporting Rep. Lipinski. It is likely that Rep. Cuellar can also count on support.
Naturally, Reps. Cuellar and Lipinski were furious that a sitting Senator from their own party would attempt to oust them for failing to toe the progressive line. Rep. Cuellar was quick to inform voters in his area that Sen. Warren and Ms. Cisneros’ agenda would eliminate more than 100,000 jobs in his district alone. Rep. Lipinski accurately pointed out to voters in his local area that Marie Newman’s policies would take away private health care and even Medicare from people who are already covered — and significantly raise taxes on local residents. He also noted that the Democrat Party is supported to allow for independent thinking rather than demanding that party members adhere to one particular orthodoxy.
It’s a statement that has been echoed by Speaker of the House Rep. Nancy Pelosi, who has told reporters in the past that “diversity in the caucus is a strength”. However, it appears that many in the party are no longer willing to listen to an experienced party leader who, for all her faults, has experience actually winning elections.
On top of all this, there is also the very real possibility that the progressive effort to gain control over two more seats in the House of Representatives will come to naught. Incumbents usually have an advantage over their challengers, and there is no indication that voters are displeased with either Rep. Cuellar or Rep. Lipinski.
Alternatively, one or both progressive challengers could win their bid only to lose in the general election. The districts in question both have a large moderate Democratic demographic, and these moderate voters may opt to sit out the election — or even vote Republican.
There is no way to tell what voters will decide when the time comes but what can be said for certain is that Sen. Warren’s endorsement of these two progressive candidates is sure to wreak havoc within the Democratic Party as it becomes increasingly obvious that moderate members are subject to removal.