Time and space constraints prevent me from making endorsements in every race I find a worthy candidate in. This is a race I hadn’t intended to touch earlier this year. I felt the Democrat would win; not in a landslide but still win. Then Pennsylvania held their primaries and a dangerous Trump endorsed white supremacist extremist won the GOP nod. I could no longer remain silent and expect others to get the job done. Today tellthetruthonthem.com endorses a more progressive than you might think Senator Ben Casey, Jr. for reelection in the Keystone State.
After growing up in Scranton, Pennsylvania Casey graduated from Holy Cross then earned his law degree from Catholic University. Casey’s Catholic faith influences his personal beliefs but in his political life he follows and defends the law. That is an important key to understanding Casey and persuading a progressive to vigorously support him.
Bob has held statewide elected office since 1997. In 2006 he defeated Rick Santorum for his Senate seat by nearly 18 points. Since then Santorum has been relegated to making movies nobody ever sees and habitually unsuccessfully running for President. That alone is enough to have earned every progressive’s gratitude.
Casey is a defender of Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security. He has a special interest in protecting children, the disabled and senior citizens. He voted for Obamacare.
Perhaps it comes from growing up in Scranton, but Bob understands blue collar, kitchen table issues. He is a proponent of raising the minimum wage. He also voted against the Trump Tower Tax Cut because he saw it did nothing for the working class.
More of his understanding of the little guy is illustrated by his stances on immigration. He supports comprehensive immigration reform including a path to citizenship. He put some “sweat equity” into his beliefs when he participated in the Muslim Ban protests at Philadelphia International Airport. Since then he has repeatedly advocated for detained refugees.
Along with fellow Democrat Joe Manchin of West Virginia, Casey has been an outspoken advocate on the behalf of coal miners protecting their black lung benefits.
While he personally self-identifies as “Pro-life” Casey has respected the laws and in 2018 earned a 100 rating from NARAL Pro-Choice America for his 2016 and 2017 votes in the Senate.
He is also a friend of the LGBT community. He voted for the repeal of DADT in 2010. He has come out in favor of same-sex civil marriage in 2013 and is a proponent of same-sex adoption.
In another tough one for a devout Catholic, he is in favor of requiring employers to provide birth control coverage in their employees’ health insurance policies. I’m far from an expert in Christianity but free will and all God’s children are concepts I remember hearing about when I was raised catholic.
Casey is a friend of the environment. He believes in Climate Change and is a supporter of alternative fuel sources and research.
While his record indicates he, (like most Senators regardless of Party), generally believes in giving a president his nominees he did vote against Neil Gorsuch. Gorsuch’s anti-labor and anti-disabled records were too much for Casey who I am willing to bet will not vote to confirm Brett Kavanaugh.
The convention political description of Pennsylvania is: Pittsburg and Philadelphia with Alabama in between. Considering that it is of little surprise that Casey entered the Senate with a reputation of being pro-gun. He has evolved. He voted for Manchin-Toomey which is a litmus test for me. He is an advocate for common sense gun regulations like expanded background checks, limiting magazine capacity, banning assault weapons and bump stocks. In fact he has sponsored or co-sponsored legislation to those effects. Casey has taken his crusade one step further than most introducing legislation prohibiting those convicted of a hate crime from being able to legally purchase a gun.
Bob is a friend of public education. He goes beyond the traditional K-12. He is an advocate for Pre-K along with community college programs with a specific emphasis on vocational training and STEM education. Public education coupled with healthy consumer demand is still the best jobs program I know of!
Pennsylvania and America need Bob Casey to remain in the Senate; it is that plain and simple!
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