Shontel Brown wins special Ohio Democratic primary, giving establishment victory over 'Squad'

Shontel Brown wins special Ohio Democratic primary, giving establishment victory over 'Squad'
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Shontel Brown won a special election primary in Ohio’s 11th Congressional District race on Tuesday, handing the establishment wing of the Democratic party a key victory despite being vastly out-raised by 'Squad'-backed Nina Turner.

Former Democratic Rep. Marcia Fudge left the seat earlier this year to become secretary of housing and urban development under President Joe Biden. The Cleveland-area seat is a longtime Democratic stronghold, with Biden winning there in 2020 with nearly 80% of the vote, making Brown almost certain to win the Nov. 2 general election.

The race marked a rehashing of the battle between Biden’s pragmatic vision of the Democratic party and the far-left activist style of Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders and Democratic New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

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Turner, a former Ohio state senator, was co-chair of Sanders’s 2020 presidential campaign and is known for her impassioned speeches weaving in her signature punctuating phrase: “Hello, somebody!”

She raised an eye-popping $4.5 million for her race through July 14 while flaunting endorsements from many of progressive members of Congress, including Sanders and all of the far-left "Squad" members such as Ocasio-Cortez.

But she faced a tough competitor in Brown, a Cuyahoga County Council member with deep local connections. She was described by Fudge's mother as being a "protégé" of the former congresswoman and got a number of high-profile Democratic endorsements: former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn, and the Congressional Black Caucus PAC. She raised more than $2 million as of July 14.

Despite leading in early polls, Turner's controversial comments and past straying from the Democratic Party may have brought her down.

Green Party 2016 presidential candidate Jill Stein offered to make Turner her running mate after Sanders lost the election (which she turned down), and Turner declined to support Clinton. Her refusal to say whether she voted for Clinton in the 2016 general election — a prospect that angers Democrats who believe third-party candidates undermined Clinton and helped boost former President Donald Trump — went viral: "Voting is private," Turner said.

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In a move that looked like an attempt to soften her image in the face of criticism about her colorful past comments (in 2020 she compared voting for Biden to eating s***), Turner flaunted the fact she was a two-time delegate for former President Barack Obama.

But she reverted to a combative tone.

“We got some folks rattled,” Turner said at an event on Monday. “But, I’m glad they’re rattled. I want them to be uncomfortable.”

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A misstep for Turner may have been bringing Sanders to campaign in the final days of the race. In the 2016 primary, Clinton won the district over Sanders 2 to 1.

Brown, if and when she wins on Nov. 2, will be the third consecutive black woman to hold the Ohio seat.

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Tags: News, Ohio, Marcia Fudge, Congress, Campaigns, Election

Original Author: Emily Brooks

Original Location: Shontel Brown wins special Ohio Democratic primary, giving establishment victory over 'Squad'

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