I’m a third-generation beekeeper and almond farmer. I still work the same land where I grew up and travel the same Central Valley roads, producing honey and pollinating crops all over California.
I never thought I would get involved in politics. And I sure as heck never thought I’d run for office.
But as those same roads began to crumble, as our community was hit by drought, as families like mine struggled with how to pay for college, I grew frustrated. My own Republican congressman voted to give tax breaks to millionaires like himself, denied climate change and sided with corporate special interests.
So I stepped up and ran two insurgent campaigns as the Democratic nominee in the 10th Congressional district. Last November, I narrowly lost my second attempt in one of the closest races in the country.
I thought I would retire from politics and go back to farming. But President Trump are two words that are tough to wake up to every morning, especially when I think about families struggling for quality affordable health care, a good job with a fair wage and a chance to achieve the American dream.
We can’t normalize Donald Trump’s antics or let the constant dysfunction in Washington, D.C., let us go numb. That’s how the bad guys win.
I’m ready to do my part to continue to resist. I’ve launched a new organization called Red to Blue California, committed to growing the Democratic bench at the local level and flipping the seven House seats held by Republicans in districts that Hillary Clinton won – some by wide margins.
In January, we all felt the progressive energy in the air as hundreds of thousands of Californians took to the streets to stand up to the Trump presidency and the cruel policies that were coming out of the White House. Trump isn’t on the ballot in 2018, but the GOP congressmen who conspire with him are up for re-election.
We must continue to march, but we must also stay involved in the electoral process and join with like-minded allies. Red to Blue CA is my attempt to help.
Michael Eggman is chairman of Red to Blue California. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.