Showing Up for Summer Lee!

SURJ members and staff are on the ground in Pittsburgh celebrating Rep. Summer Lee’s overwhelming victory in the Democratic Congressional primary yesterday! A majority-white working class city just reaffirmed that an unapologetic progressive and PA’s first Black Congresswoman represents their interests. 

400+ SURJ members knocked on more than 6,000 doors, called more than 150,000 voters, and held 12,000 one-on-one conversations with white voters in Rep. Lee’s district to mobilize support for her justice-aligned agenda. I’m proud that SURJ ran the largest phonebank program outside the campaign. And that our members came from chapters across the country to knock doors alongside our partners at PA United and Seed the Vote.

Can you give a gift today to celebrate this victory and help us win the next campaign in New York?

Lee’s opponent attacked her for being “too extreme” on issues like police reform and supporting a ceasefire in Gaza. This is where SURJ’s members shine: holding successful persuasion conversations about race and other “controversial” topics with white people. 

A long time SURJ phone banker Sarah shared, “I spoke with a man whose initial response to hearing Summer Lee’s name was ‘I heard she wants to abolish the police.’ But when I engaged him around what he cared about (urban blight and jobs), he emerged as a Lee supporter.”

Throughout the rest of the year, other members of the progressive bloc in Congress called “the Squad” like Rep. Jamaal Bowman in New York and Rep. Ilhan Omar in Minnesota will be challenged in their Democratic primaries, facing a historic $100 million pledged by AIPAC and other billionaires who fund the far right. Rep. Lee is the first Squad member to face these odds– and her victory is a testament to the fact that multiracial grassroots organizing for movement-aligned candidates can overcome billionaire’s efforts to buy election results.

White people will continue to plan an important role in these primaries– and SURJ will continue to show up to move white voters to reject racist attempts to villainize members of the Squad, and instead to see their shared interest in the social justice agendas these Congresspeople champion.  

Can you give a gift to help us get there?

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