Tim Carpenter claimed that Progressive Democrats of America had chalked up several achievements in its short life, successfully promoting initiatives by PDA board members John Conyers and James McGovern.
- PDA was the driving force in the passage of resolutions opposing the war in Iraq by eight state Democratic Party meetings. The organization also was instrumental in the passage of resolutions in 10 states calling for the impeachment of President Bush.
- PDA is often referred to by Congressional Progressive Caucus Executive Director Bill Goold as the CPC’s field operation, because PDA has built relationships with members of Congress by delivering grassroots support for their initiatives – from Rep. John Conyers’ investigation of the 2004 Ohio voting fraud to Rep. Jim McGovern’s bill to cut off funding for the war in Iraq, a current priority effort.
The organization worked hard for Marcy Winograd against Jane Harman and for other "progressive " Democrats including Donna Edwards, Christine Cegelis, Jerry McNerney, Tony Trupiano, John Hall, Jeff Latas, Gabby Giffords and Herb Paine.
- While PDA is still only a progressive “pup” compared with big liberal dogs like MoveOn, PDA-backed candidates have taken some big bites out of conventional wisdom and centrist Democratic complacency. In Los Angeles, local PDA leader Marcy Winograd won 37 percent of the primary vote against entrenched pro-war Democrat Rep. Jane Harman with only two months of lead time. In Maryland, the dynamic Donna Edwards appears to have come only a few hundred votes short of toppling the multi-term Rep. Al Wynn in her first bid for public office, and she is seen as well-positioned to prevail in 2008. And in Illinois, with strong PDA support, Christine Cegelis, though outspent 8 to 1, nearly beat the candidate of the inside-the- Beltway Party leadership and Illinois party machine, Tammy Duckworth, to vie for the seat being vacated by Rep. Henry Hyde.
- This fall, in the House, PDA is focusing attention and effort on several strong progressives worthy of note and support in hopes of flipping several seats from red to blue. In California, Jerry McNerney is running a strong race against an incumbent Republican. In Michigan, Tony Trupiano, with one of the nation’s strongest grassroots efforts, has his sights on an open seat in a Republican-leaning district. And in New York, anti-nuclear activist John Hall has won the Democratic nomination to challenge a four-term incumbent Republican. In Arizona, while the local PDA primary candidate, Jeff Latas, did not prevail, PDA will now enthusiastically join forces with PDA Board Member Rep. Raul Grijalva and support the nominee, the equally progressive Gabby Gifford, as well as PDA-backed Herb Paine, who won a razor-thin primary victory in a neighboring district.
2013 11th Annual Douglass-Debs Dinner
Over 180 people attended the thirteenth annual Frederick Douglass-Eugene V. Debs Dinner at UAW Local 600 in Dearborn on November 10th. Honorees were Steve Babson/People Before Banks Coalition and Marjorie Mitchell, the Executive Director of the Michigan Universal Health Care Access Network.
The dinner co-chairs were Metropolitan Detroit AFL-CIO President Chris Michalakis and Tony Trupiano, host of “First Shift,” the morning talk show on WDTW. The Bill Meyer Group provided the entertainment.
- PDA website, accessed 2009
- GDDSA newsletter, January 2013 Volume 14, Issue 1, John Nichols Delights the Audience at Thirteenth Annual Douglass-Debs Dinner, By David Green]