RAD’s First Crop of Endorsed Candidates for 2018


RAD Endorsed Candidates

We are excited to announce the first crop of endorsed candidates—from US Senator to Vermont House of Representatives—for the 2018 elections!

These 17 candidates were endorsed by a vote of the Rights & Democracy (RAD) Board of Directors to show support for candidates who have championed key legislative issues such as raising the minimum wage, workers’ rights, universal health care, and racial equity, among other top concerns facing Vermont communities and families.

Several of these candidates were backed by RAD in 2016 and not only won their election, but pushed hard for legislation that improves the lives of Vermonters.

“A Rights & Democracy endorsement is a signal that a candidate is a leader on the issues that reflect RAD’s values,” said Alison Nihart, Co-Chair of the Rights & Democracy Board. “A RAD endorsement comes with the expectation that elected candidates will work with RAD on legislation of mutual interest. In that way, it’s more than just an election year activity—it’s the start (or continuation) of a working relationship.”

If you live in the district of one of these candidates—they need your help to win! That means volunteering time to door knock, hold house parties, and raise money. Contact the campaigns directly below, or email Elise Greaves, RAD’s political engagement coordinator to see if RAD is doing any work in these districts.

Here is RAD’s first crop of endorsed candidates approved by our Movement Politics Team and Board of Directors:

Federal & Statewide Candidates

  • Bernie Sanders (U.S. Senate) (incumbent, previously endorsed in 2016 presidential primary)
  • David Zuckerman (Lt. Governor) (incumbent, previously endorsed)

State Senate Candidates

  • Dustin Tanner (FRA-Senate) (new candidate, RAD leader on Raise Up Campaign)
  • Debbie Ingram, Chittenden County (incumbent, previously endorsed)
  • Chris Pearson, Chittenden County (incumbent, previously endorsed)
  • Michael Sirotkin, Chittenden County (incumbent, previously endorsed)
  • Anthony Pollina, Washington County (incumbent, previously endorsed)

State House Candidates

  • Mari Cordes (ADD-4) (challenger, previously endorsed)
  • Barb Wilson (ADD-RUT) (new candidate, RAD Health Care Justice team member)
  • Kiah Morris (BENN 2-2) (incumbent, previously endorsed)
  • Chip Troiano, State Representative, Caledonia-2 (incumbent, previously endorsed)
  • Scott Campbell (CAL-3) (challenger, previously endorsed)
  • Selene Colburn (CHI-6-4) (incumbent, previously endorsed)
  • Brian Cina (CHI-6-4) (incumbent, previously endorsed)
  • Diana Gonzalez (CHI-6-7) (incumbent, previously endorsed)
  • Kate Larose (FRA 3-1) (new candidate, RAD member)
  • Mike McCarthy (FRA-3-1) (challenger, previously endorsed)
  • Kelly Cummings (FRA-6) (new candidate, RAD Health Care Justice team member)
  • Cindy Weed (FRA-7) (incumbent, previously endorsed)
  • Susan Hatch Davis (ORA-1) (challenger, previously endorsed)
  • Heather Stevenson (RUT 5-1) (new candidate, founding RAD Rutland member)
  • Gina Ottoboni (RUT-WDR 1) (new candidate, RAD member)
  • Jeremy Hansen, State Representative, Washington-1 (challenger, previously endorsed)
  • Tom Stevens (WAS-CHI) (incumbent, previously endorsed)
  • Emilie Kornheiser (WDH 2-1) (new candidate, RAD member)

RAD’s Movement Politics Committee and RAD’s Board of Directors chose to make these endorsements now because these candidates sought us out and:

  1. Had previously been endorsed by RAD and been a champion of our issues, or both;
  2. Have been a proven champion on our issues both in the legislature and in our communities; or,
  3. They themselves have been an active RAD member and leader in either a regional group  or issue campaign.

In the statewide elections of 2016, RAD endorsed 37 candidates and 20 won their elections, including Attorney General T.J. Donovan, Lt. Gov. David Zuckerman, State Senators Debbie Ingram and Chris Pearson, and State Representatives Selene Colburn, Brian Cina, Kiah Morris, and Cindy Weed. RAD recommended an additional 12 candidates for election, and of those 7 won.

Onward to November!

Alison Nihart
Chair, Movement Politics Committee

Elise Greaves
Political Engagement Coordinator