Endorsements of Candidates for Public Office
When DSA endorses a candidate, we dedicate a significant amount of chapter resources and organizer time to winning an election. That’s why we do not endorse a candidate unless our members agree to be a significant part of that candidate’s campaign.
As a member organization with limited time and resources, this means we must be deliberate in the candidate endorsements we do issue. DSA-LA will not endorse candidates in the majority of elections across Los Angeles County, because for us endorsing a candidate is about more than identifying values alignment. An endorsement from us means we are choosing to link arms and work to win public office with our endorsed candidate.
2020 General Election EndorsementsIn the 2020 general election, DSA-LA has endorsed the following candidates and ballot initiative:
- Nithya Raman for LA City Council District 4
- Fatima Iqbal-Zubair for California Assembly District 64
- Konstantine Anthony for Burbank City Council At-Large
- Yes on 15 Schools and Communities First Campaign
Read more about each below and head to the linked campaign pages to get involved.
Nithya Raman for LA City Council District 4
Nithya has a deep history of political activism that aligns very closely with the values of DSA-LA. Between her work advocating for the urban poor in Chennai and her work helping to build the homeless advocacy group SELAH here in LA, she has first hand experience working on exactly the kinds of issues that our organization has historically prioritized. And in this campaign, she has been vocal about her support for a Green New Deal for Los Angeles, which would combine expanded public transit, improved services for the unhoused, stronger tenant protections, and reduced focus in the city budget for the LAPD.
Nithya is challenging the incumbent City Councilor David Ryu, who can safely be described by the Left as “an establishment Democrat.” Much as he likes to describe himself as a progressive figure, he has in the past voted in favor of measures that would lead to the effective criminalization of homelessness and voted against measures that would improve sustainable transit infrastructure, such as bike lanes.
Nithya received DSA-LA’s endorsement on December 18, 2019. In the March 3 primary election, no candidate received a clear majority of the vote, sending the two highest vote-earners to a runoff in the November 3 general election. Nithya and incumbent Ryu were separated by fewer than 3,000 votes in the primary, with Nithya earning 41% of the vote to Ryu’s 44%. This is the first time in recent memory that a primary challenger has forced an incumbent LA City Councilor to a runoff election.
Fatima Iqbal-Zubair for California Assembly District 64
“Having served the Watts community as a teacher-leader in a public high school, I have been privileged to be in the midst of the power of this unique, resilient and talented community. I have also been exposed to the many challenges my students and their families face. As I began expanding my community work outside of the school community, I have been heartbroken to learn that the needs of this brave community and district (one of the poorest in California) are not met by our current State representative. To ensure that the families of this district may fulfill their highest potential, I realized that I need to step up my fight and leave the classroom to become their fiercest advocate in Sacramento.” — Endorsement statement from Fatima Iqbal-Zubair
Fatima received DSA-LA’s endorsement on August 3, 2020. In the March 3 primary election, Fatima ranked second behind incumbent Assemblymember Mike Gipson. Despite major disadvantages in fundraising and name recognition, Fatima received 32% of the primary vote to Gipson’s 67%, with 20,000 votes between them. California’s open primary system sends the two highest vote-earners to the general election, regardless of party, allowing Fatima a runoff against Gipson on the November 3 ballot.
Konstantine Anthony for Burbank City Council At-Large
“I am autistic, and I’ve been homeless. In 2004, I moved to Burbank to work in film and television. Since that time, I’ve become involved in disability advocacy, housing justice, and workers’ rights. During my campaign, I pledge not to take donations from corporations, corporate PACs, property developers, realtors, landlords, fossil fuel executives, or police associations. I would like to offer my life experience in service to the city of Burbank. With my passion and dedication, I will be a valuable public servant.” — Endorsement statement from Konstantine Anthony
Konstantine received DSA-LA’s endorsement on August 3, 2020. This will be the first year for Burban City Council elections to coincide with a November general election. Burbank City Council elections are all conducted in at-large races, allowing all eligible voters in the city to cast ballots for Konstantine.
Click here to learn more and get involved in the DSA-LA for Konstantine Working Group
Yes on 15: Schools and Communities First
Proposition 15, Schools and Communities First, is on the ballot this November with the goal of ending a tax loophole that gives billions of dollars a year to large commercial property owners and wealthy investors and reallocates those funds to K-12 public schools, community colleges, and local public services such as parks, libraries, homeless services, health clinics, and public transit. Prop 15 will reclaim $10-12 billion annually by requiring wealthy owners of commercial properties with assessed value over $3 million to pay taxes based on market value, rather than purchase price. The current and foreseeable economic distress triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic and the calls for racial justice makes Prop 15 urgent. Prop 15 will direct much needed resources to working-class communities of color that for far too long have been underserved and underfunded. The capitalist class continues to hoard absurd levels of profit while California schools, services and the community suffer, but we can begin to put a stop to that with a Yes on Prop 15. Now is the time to tax the rich to fund our schools and services.
Click here to learn more and get involved in DSA-LA’s Yes on 15 Working Group