JPP’s Guide to the 2018 Primaries

JP Progressives Endorsements for the September 4th Elections


The upcoming September 4th Primary has close races with big implications for Jamaica Plain and Boston. This primary election provides opportunities to become a more progressive and just Massachusetts. JP Progressives have spent months tracking these races and we encourage you to support these progressive candidates. Not only should you vote for them on September 4th, but we invite you to support them however you can in these final days of their campaigns.


About Our Endorsements


This year, JP Progressives created a member-driven endorsement process. It starts with a candidate questionnaire, forum in JP, and community conversation among members. Our Steering Committee makes a majority recommendation communicated to our hundreds of voting members. If 60% of voting members support a candidate, they receive our endorsement, and more importantly, the volunteer advocacy of our motivated grassroots members. (For our surveys, videos, and detailed endorsements, visit our Facebook page.)


This process affirms our commitment to respect different viewpoints and then strive to come together. Because we are a ‘big tent’ organization housing a range of progressive viewpoints, steering committee members retain personal autonomy to publicly support other candidates. The organization’s endorsements and where we direct our time and resources, however, reflect the priorities of the majority of our members. If you like what you see here and would like to volunteer—or if you disagree with some of our endorsements and want to make your voice heard in our community in the future—we welcome your input! We believe that whoever does the work should get a vote, and you can participate in our next vote by emailing us at and volunteering with us or coming to three of our events.


Because we are here to serve our neighbors in Jamaica Plain, we start with the local races.


State Representative Races (JP Districts):


15th Suffolk District: Nika Elugardo

Nika is a talented woman of color running on a bold progressive platform including fully-funding public education, reaching fully-renewable energy by 2050, and securing a single-payer healthcare system. She is a former aide to Senator Sonia Chang-Díaz and has twenty years’ experience in economic development and bridging diverse viewpoints to achieve progressive outcomes.


We believe our Rep. Jeffrey Sánchez shares many our values, but has not leveraged  the power of his new position as Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee to pass important legislation on education funding, immigrant protections, and climate change. Instead, he voted with the Speaker at nearly every opportunity and received a C-plus from the Progressive Mass Legislator Scorecard.

Read the full (longer) statement


11th Suffolk District: Liz Malia

Liz is an ever-present and reliable advocate for her constituents’ progressive priorities. She is dedicated to constituent services and co-sponsored 13 of the 16 bills on the Progressive Mass Legislative Agenda, which is a critical step in bringing a bill to a vote. She has led on criminal justice reform, mental health care, combating the opioid epidemic, and affordable housing over her career, and we should re-elect Liz Malia to continue that work.

Read the full statement


Suffolk County Races


District Attorney: Rachael Rollins

Alongside the 30+ member organizations of the Justice for Mass coalition, we endorse Rachael Rollins. The DA is a pivotal role in implementing criminal justice reform. Rachael brings a progressive vision for the office and critical management experience required to implement a change agenda. To avoid splitting the progressive vote between three progressive candidates and losing the race to the more conservative Greg Henning, progressives must coalesce around a single candidate. Rollins’ broad appeal among distinct progressive groups makes her the best choice.


Read the full (longer) statement


Register of Deeds: Katie Forde

Katie was the 2017 recipient of JPP’s Golden Clipboard Award for her activism and in 2016 she lost by only 600 votes to now-incumbent Stephen Murphy. She is dedicated to progressive values and the potential of this office to serve the community’s housing needs.

Read more




MA 7th Congressional District: Ayanna Pressley

The 7th Congressional District is one of the most diverse, progressive, and unequal districts in this country. We believe this district needs to be represented by Ayanna Pressley, a rising star in American politics. She is an active, bold, passionate progressive who will not only vote the right way but will also be a policy leader fighting for systemic change at the national level.

We believe that lens matters and Ayanna brings a focus on issues that urgently need a champion and impact communities of color, women, and children. Congressman Capuano has done a fine job for this deep blue district, but after two decades, we can’t wait any longer to bring different voices to the Massachusetts Congressional delegation.

Read the full statement here


Statewide Offices:


Secretary of State: Josh Zakim

Josh will bring a fresh perspective and a passion for modernizing our democratic institutions to expand participation and transparency. As progressives, we see the value of a more activist secretary of state pushing for critical reforms aimed at boosting voter turnout and improving access to public records. Josh supports same-day voter registration, ranked-choice voting, and other pro-democracy modernizations. After 24 years in office and opposition to some voting reforms, it’s time for the incumbent Bill Galvin to step aside.

Read more


Governor: Jay Gonzalez

Jay is a solid progressive who is on the right side of all progressive issues such as implementing fair taxation, building a single-payer health care system, transitioning our economy away from fossil fuels, and improving public transportation. He is experienced in the workings of Beacon Hill from his time in the Patrick Administration. His campaign is best situated to defeat the well-funded Republican Charlie Baker.

Read the full statement


Lieutenant Governor: Jimmy Tingle

Tingle brings an inspirational message, an engaging personal story, and likable charisma to the Democratic ticket. Tingle has demonstrated commitment to progressive policies and an ability to effectively communicate our shared values to voters outside traditional liberal bastions like JP. For evidence, watch his fantastic convention speech online. Oh, and he’s all about fixing the T.

Read the full statement


p.s. This post is adapted from our recent letter to the JP Gazette

p.p. s. Looking for Governor’s Council and Clerk of Courts? We didn’t go through the full endorsement process in those races. Contact an individual member of the Steering Committee for their personal reflections on those races.