JP Progressives Endorsement Criteria

Candidates endorsed by the Committee may receive the following:

  • A press release by the Committee announcing its endorsement.
  • Permission to cite the endorsement in campaign statements and in literature.
  • Distribution of endorsement statements to the JP Progressive membership.
  • Campaign activates to be undertaken by the Committee (to be determined in consultation with the endorsed candidate’s campaign) may include participation in fundraising, phone-banks, door knocking, poll checking, and other activities deemed necessary.

Candidate Endorsement Criteria

Though we use the term “criteria,” JP Progressives will institute no absolutes or litmus tests on candidates.  Rather, this document states values, principles and factors to consider in determining an endorsement.  The word “criteria” may be stronger than we intend, but it does emphasize the importance of the points stated below, even if no single criteria might be considered a “deal breaker” in a given circumstance.  Note that we have differentiated the criteria listed below from specific issues to consider when endorsing, which are listed at the end without prioritization.  These issues are intentionally broad, as each campaign will present unique considerations.  When JP Progressives goes through its process to determine our issue priorities, this list may be revised and prioritized.

  • Committed to building the progressive movement.  An endorsed candidate’s vision of success extends beyond winning elections and being in power.  An endorsed candidate sees it as an essential part of their role to take leadership in strengthening civic engagement and leadership, inspiring commitment to progressive values, and broadening people’s access to power and decision-making at all levels.
  • Committed to taking leadership.  An endorsed candidate is consistently willing to take bold leadership actions to advance progressive values and policies.  That includes sponsoring legislation, public advocacy, and organizing colleagues around progressive legislation.  An endorsed candidate should not have a track record of actions or votes that directly contradict stated progressive values.
  • Committed to advancing the goal of racial justice.  An endorsed candidate understands the economic and social importance of advancing leadership of color at all levels of civic participation and governance.  An endorsed candidate takes leadership in addressing racial inequities during their campaign, within their district, and in society at large.  An endorsed candidate sees advancing racial justice as a cornerstone of what it means to be progressive.
  • Committed to advancing economic justice.   An endorsed candidate takes leadership in standing up for middle class and low-income families and individuals.  A candidate takes leadership in advancing equitable economic, monetary, and tax policies that benefit the vast majority (the 99%) of our residents.
  • Committed to advancing systemic reform.   An endorsed candidate understands that many of our society’s problems stem from flaws in underlying systems, values, and popular beliefs that cannot be addressed by short term measures that merely postpone or conceal an underlying problem.   An endorsed candidate expresses long- and short-term strategies that prioritize and address these problems.
  • Has a viable campaign.  An endorsed candidate is running a serious campaign and can express a realistic — even if difficult — path to victory.
  • Endorsement meeting.  An endorsed candidate is willing to meet with JP Progressives in person.
  • Background, history, and/or track record aligns with our values.  An endorsed candidate is able to point to specific examples in their past to show how they have advanced stated progressive values.
  • Is able to articulate progressive positions on issues.  An endorsed candidate will be able to express an understanding of progressive positions on specific issues.
  • Expands the voting base.  An endorsed candidate has the ability to expand the base to those voters who often choose to stay home, rather than participate in elections.  Preferably, said candidate will also have the track record to prove the point.
  • Is running for an important seat.  An endorsed candidate will be running in an election JP Progressives deems important.
  • Is measurably better than other candidate(s) in the race.  An endorsed candidate can be shown to be significantly different from others in the race in terms of level of progressiveness, proven track record, and seriousness as a candidate.
  • Candidates who are “card-carrying” members of JP Progressives will be given greater consideration.
  • Candidates who publicly support the JP Progressives agenda will be given greater consideration.
  • Incumbent has taken tough votes and built a strong track record over time.  It is often far easier to fall for the candidate who talks a good game but has not shown they can do it once in office.  A strong incumbent earning JP Progressives’s endorsement has shown that they are willing to fight for, take leadership on, and vote in support of progressive values, even in tough circumstances. JP Progressives recognizes that to be effective, legislators may occasionally need to compromise to accomplish goals.  JP Progressives will take that into consideration; however, JP Progressives generally will not look kindly on incumbents who act against previously espoused progressive values for the sake of expediency or to please leadership.