Watch out Congress, Nina Turner is coming

Nina Turner has officially announced that she is running for Ohio’s 11th Congressional District.

Drew Angerer via Getty Images

Hello Somebody!

When those words were uttered at the beginning of a Bernie Sanders rally, you knew what time it was. And if you didn’t know, you were about to find out who and what Nina Turner was all about. A fierce advocate for racial justice, Turner invokes the spirit of our late Civil Rights leaders who did not come along to get along. The kind of leader needed to move the ball forward in a futile Congress, and this is why I love that she is running to represent Ohio’s 11th Congressional District.

While there will be detractors in both parties, one thing we know for sure is that Turner is for us, not the one-percent. Many opponents of policies like Medicare for All or a $15 minimum wage will say it is too soon or we’re moving too fast to implement these things, but this pandemic proves that we’re right on time. We may have lost the electoral battle of 2020, but the war for the soul of the Democratic party is ours for the taking because we won the argument.

The time is always ripe to do right. – Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. at the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C., 1968

This is primarily why I love that Turner is running for Congress. She is not going to wait or be told when the right time will be to address the issues that make people uncomfortable, especially those who have been more than well off through the pandemic and one of the greatest wealth transfers in history. A shift in America’s priorities with steadfast focused leadership will need to take shape and Turner can do much more than just rise up to the challenge, she can shine and lead us through the inevitable justice required for us to move forward as a nation.

Four days before Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s murder, he gave his last Sunday sermon at the National Cathedral in Washington D.C. where he stated with great urgency about the need for those who present themselves as good people to not let time become a force of social stagnation. Because what is inevitable can only wait on so much time, and “the time is always ripe to do right.” An outright rejection of the bloodshed, violence, and brutality must be met by the people who are put in power––remember, we vote for these folks and need to hold them accountable every November, not just presidential elections.

In this spirit, Turner not only recognizes the urgency of the people, but is ready and willing to take action on it. Her campaign announcement, ‘No Honeymoon’, holds nothing back and captures the need to hold the Biden administration accountable. More importantly, Democrats will hold the smallest majority in House seats in more than a century, which is going to put an increasing amount of pressure on Blue Dog Democrats. And with the potential addition of Turner, my bet is Nancy Pelosi is shaking in her boots and the Democratic Party will pull out all of the tricks to block her from being elected.

Let’s be clear, this is nothing new as many left-wing congressional candidates before Turner like AOC, Cori Bush, and Jamaal Bowman faced the same obstacles. However, they had a much tougher road as they were fresh faces that had to take on Democratic incumbents with decades of experience in their primaries. On the contrary in Turner’s case, she is running for a wide open congressional seat with potentially four to six other candidates giving her a better shot than her peers. The reason being is that Turner already has a great amount of name recognition from her time representing portions of the district as a Cleveland City Councilwoman, Ohio State Senator, and on the trail with the Bernie Sanders presidential campaigns in both 2016 and 2020.

Additionally, this district is a Democratic stronghold including most of the majority-black precincts between Cleveland and Akron. Thus, it would be safe to assume that the winner of the Democratic primary would go on to win the seat. In these types of congressional seats, the question is usually what kind of Democrat will be elected—a progressive or the typical neo-liberal corporatist bought out by special interests that follows whatever leadership tells them. Turner will certainly not be the latter and the prospect of her being sent to Congress will not only increase the leverage of progressives within the House, but also provide the leadership that the progressive movement desperately needs as Bernie will seek to pass the torch pretty soon.

I along with many others will have my fingers crossed in hopes of Turner turning this out because there is nothing I would love more than a cutthroat Turner speech from the House floor calling out Pelosi and the rest of her minions. I’m counting on it!

– Peace be unto you.

Human. Millennial. Afro-Latino. Brother. He/Him. @ohitsodali across all social platforms.

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