WFP has Endorsed 13 Progressive Candidates in Primary Races Across Pennsylvania
Philadelphia, Pa. — The Working Families Party today announced more endorsements ahead of the April 28th primary. In the Senate, WFP has endorsed Brett Burman (District 9) and Shanna Danielson (District 31). For State House, WFP has endorsed incumbents Summer Lee (District 31), Sara Innamorato (District 21), Joseph Hohenstein (District 177) and Danielle Otten (District 155). We are also endorsing newcomers Jessica Benham (District 36), John Padora (District 37), Michelle Knoll (District 44), Nicole Miller (District 87), Dana Hamp Gulick (District 97), Nancy Guenst (District 152) and Andre Del Valle (District 175).
This year, the Working Families Party is committed to building the movement towards a $15 minimum wage in Pennsylvania, and electing leaders ready to build an economy that works for the many, not the few. The WFP has played a critical role in winning a $15 minimum wage in states and cities across the country, including Connecticut, New Jersey, New York, Maryland, and Denver, with active campaigns in Rhode Island and New Mexico.
“We are investing in an exciting slate of progressive candidates across the state,” said Nicolas O’Rourke, Organizing Director for Pennsylvania Working Families Party. “These candidates will fight for $15 minimum wage for Pennsylvanians, and help us build the Working Families Party in strategic areas of the state by flipping Republican seats and broadening our base among communities of color in Philadelphia.”
The Working Families Party has already endorsed incumbent Reps. Elizabeth Fiedler (District 184), Malcolm Kenyatta (District 181) and Chris Rabb (District 200). All three candidates were strong supporters of the history-making bid by Kendra Brooks (WFP-Philadelphia) to become the city’s first third-party council member. The grassroots political party pledged to support each of its endorsed candidates in any primary or general election contests in 2020.
“I am running for State Senate to be a voice for working families,” said Shanna Danielson, candidate for State Senate, District 33. “We need folks at the table who come from the working class of this commonwealth, and who will bring that perspective to the legislature. I’m honored to have the support of the Working Families Party because that’s who I intend to fight for in Harrisburg.”
In District 185, which covers parts of Southwest Philadelphia, WFP is supporting Evette Thompson. She is challenging a longtime Democratic incumbent in Southwest Philadelphia and has been a leader in her community for decades. She is a community leader who is passionate about supporting this city’s youth, helping those who have been affected by mass incarceration, gun violence, mental health issues, and the opioid crisis.
“I am beyond happy, and feel extremely blessed to receive an endorsement from WFP,” said Evette Thompson, candidate for State House, District 185. “WFP’s passion, drive, and the work that you put in speak volumes. We share the same values, and thank you for going on this journey with me.”
Andre Del Valle has gone from working on behalf of elected as a staffer in Philadelphia to running to become one himself. As a young man, he saw his parents work tirelessly to give him the opportunities he has today and knows just how hard it can be for young people trying to build a life for themselves in a city that is only getting more and more expensive. He’s a candidate who knows how Philadelphia works and is passionate about making sure Black and Brown communities get the care and attention they deserve from our elected officials.
“It’s time for a Better Vision for our communities in the 175th Legislative District, and I know that my vision will become a reality for my fellow neighbors, businesses, and schools with the endorsement of the Working Families Party,” said Andre Del Valle, candidate for State House, District 175. “It’s such an honor and privilege to have the WFP seal of approval joining the countless others nationwide and across our city who are continuing.”
Nancy Guenst is running to flip House Seat 152, which covers parts of Montgomery County and Philadelphia. She previously served on Hatboro’s City Council, where she led the effort to pass a Human Relations ordinance to protect her town’s LGBTQ community. When that measure was vetoed, she then ran and successfully replaced the mayor. Immediately upon taking office, her first act was signing the Human Relations ordinance into law. “I could not be more honored to represent The Working Families Party in our upcoming election to the State House in Pennsylvania,” said Nancy Guenst, candidate for State House, District 152.
The Working Families Party is a grassroots political party that recruits, trains, and elects the next generation of progressive leaders to office. In 2016 the WFP helped Rep. Rabb defeat incumbent Tonyelle Cook-Artis in a major upset. In 2017 the WFP knocked on 70,000 doors to elect District Attorney Larry Krasner. And in 2018, the WFP helped Liz Fiedler win her 4-way primary race with 51% of the vote.
In 2019, the WFP helped elect longtime tenants organizer and progressive champion Jumaane Williams as Public Advocate in New York City, swelled the ranks of Chicago city council progressive caucus, made history in Philadelphia by electing Kendra Brooks, helped make Stephen Mason the first Black mayor of Cedar Hill, Texas, helped insurgent Latinx LGBTQ social worker Candi CdeBaca oust a longtime incumbent on the Denver City Council, and elected other council members from Morgantown, W.Va., to Phoenix, Ariz.