News Jun 10, 2024 at 10:45 am

Imraan Siddiqi and Melissa Chaudhry Call on Washingtonians to Vote Their Conscience into Congress

Some Washingtonians could get the chance to replace their war hawk representatives in Congress with progressive challengers running in the name of a permanent ceasefire in Gaza. Anthony Keo



The Stranger never tires of running articles on candidates who are not going to win, and especially are not going to win in places mostly outside of Seattle. (Why Rep. Adam Smith even takes the Stranger’s phone calls any more has become an enduring mystery.)

Along the way, we get these howlers:

“Chaudhry said she would have called for a ceasefire with Rep. Pramila Jayapal in mid October after Israel had killed 3,000 Palestinians.“

Would Chaudhry also have spent a well doing clean-up, after pissing away every free chance she was offered to condemn rape?

“…And if we were to threaten to cut off those weapons,”

Not big on how Congress works, are we?

“DSA has yet to endorse in Chaudhry’s race.”

The DSA could barely get a well-financed incumbent re-elected in Seattle’s District 2.

“Plus, the tides are changing in general. In larger numbers than ever before, celebrities have started to express public support for civilians in Gaza, which helps to normalize the position.”


Now, as for the persons who actually decide elections — what do they think? A recent poll of American registered voters revealed the following:

Mark Penn, the co-director of the poll, said support for Israel “has not budged” despite the “campus unrest.” He said the student protests appear out of step with broader public attitudes on Israel and noted that the poll showed Americans largely want a cease-fire in the war but only after Hamas is removed from power and the hostages they seized during its Oct. 7 attack on Israel are returned.’

‘At the same time, the poll also found support for Israel to continue its military operation into the city of Rafah, where many Palestinian civilians have fled to after Israel’s offensive began. Israeli leaders have said that Hamas militants are in the city.

‘More than 70 percent of respondents said Israel should move forward with the operation, including 57 percent of those 18 to 24 and increasing percentages with each older age group.’



@2 I wouldn't trust any poll conducted by Mark Penn to be objective. But it doesn't matter in this case because Americans don't vote based on foreign policy (unless they or their kids, or their friends' kids, are actually fighting in a war somewhere). I'm not great at predicting election outcomes but it's safe to say these candidates will succeed or fail based on something other than their stance on Gaza.


Meanwhile you have elected representatives like Fetterman going on CNN and discussing why he no longer wants the progressive label

"Fetterman said, talking to CNN’s Dana Bash. “Now, eight years ago, I was a progressive, but the situation’s changed and I‘ve been very clear that I didn‘t leave that label. That label leaved [left] me and I think it’s much more important to be focusing on Donald Trump instead of those kinds of purity tests and those kinds of issues.”


Chaudhry and Siddiqi are not viable candidates, DSA is not a viable third party (regardless of how much digital ink TS provides). I really wish progressives would wake up to reality (but then I remember most of these folks want to see the world burn / profit off opposing Trump).


“Siddiqi does not think he’s “too left” for his district.”

Siddiqi is clearly delusional.


@1- zero chance of either of these getting through the primary. If they do somehow manage to help the GOP keep Congress, or help Trump get elected, a whole lot of us are going to be more than willing to use a certain C-word, regardless of what this article says.


“Siddiqi and Chaudhry both have difficult races ahead of them.”

Well, at least some recognition of reality in this article.


“You know, as somebody who's voted Democrat their entire life, I ask: How are Democrats differentiating themselves from Republicans at this point?”

Ah yes. The old "they're both the same!" battle cry of the losers, trolls, and bots.

Being a moral scold never winds hearts and minds.


@10 -- also easy for him to say. Maybe try being a pregnant woman living in a deep red state with a nonviable fetus who is told they have to be closer to death before they can get an abortion before you talk about how the parties are the same. As much as DSA people like to carry on about privilege you'd think they'd do better at disgusing how full of it they are.


@12 -- yes, you've identified why it's so stupid for The Stranger to abandon every issue it claims to care deeply about because of a war thousands of miles away between two conservative sides. It's even dumber in the modern day to decide that because Nasser decided to align Egypt with the USSR in 1957 aligning yourself with the more conservative of the two combatants is more important than women being able to control their own bodies in the US, but that's this paper for you.


@13: While I agree the Stranger’s obsession with the Israel-Hamas war costs the Stranger dearly, the Stranger completely abandoned their pro-choice position many years ago. In 2016, they loudly approved of then-CM Sawant traveling thousands of miles to campaign deceitfully against Clinton:

“Sawant's opposition to Hillary Clinton was heard not only locally, but nationally. She made the case that Clinton was exactly the same as Trump,”


Also, I believe the Stranger’s position on Israel comes less from the early Cold War, and more from their misapplication of settler-colonist theory to Palestine. In their Manichaean view, there must be one, (and only one), Oppressor, and only one Oppressed, and once those roles were allocated to Israel and the Palestinians, respectively, the Stranger’s views were set. No amount of appeal to reason, concern for individual civil liberties, etc. can change it.


So many complaints in this comment section about citizens partaking to the democratic process, one would think they stumbled onto the up is down, down is up world where citizen's involvement is bad for democracy.

You'd also think that someone like Schrier who voted to defund UNRWA based on unverified and obviously partisan propaganda while life and death humanitarian aid is sorely needed, and voted to supply civilian killer bombs to Israel would have their medical license pulled due to violation of the hippocratic oath they signed.


@16: “ So many complaints in this comment section about citizens partaking to the democratic process,”

The Stranger is holding elections? Or discussing candidates who might win elections? Where?

(Also, of course, everyone else’s complaining is just plain flat wrong, whilst your complaining about their complaining shows your virtue.)

“Schrier who voted to defund UNRWA…”

As a Member of Congress, she can vote to do that if she wants, for any reason she wants, and if you’re not a registered voter in her district, she needn’t even pretend to care in the slightest about what, if anything, you might bother to think about it. (That’s called our “democratic process” in action.)

Here’s a suggestion: get Iran and Qatar to donate as much to UNRWA as they do to Hamas. Then UNRWA wouldn’t need American money.


@17 Typical "naw, you did it" type deflection from you, on all aspects and without ever addressing the substance of my comment of course. I doubt you'll ever grow up. Probably too late anyway.


@16 — no one is complaining because people are partaking in the democratic process. People are rightfully being critical of nihilistic massively privileged candidates professing to be one thing while instead doing everything in their power to get Donald Trump elected and allow Republicans to do more damage because big street protests are cooler than having a Democrat in the White House.


"... and
without ever ad-
dressing the substance
of my comment of course."

without Fail
that's our dear
Wormtongue. his
fascist narrative rules
the Roost here at the Stranger

until it

thank you


@19 -exactly. Participating in the democratic process is laudable. Doing it in the manner of a petulant child, with no consideration for the effect of your participation, is moronic.


According to AIPAC, they claim having a perfect record in defeating anti-I candidates. It remains to be seen whether the current street tumult evolves, but if it does, having a fundraising PAC that counters AIPAC must certainly be an element.


@22: It’s long been legend in Congress: whether a district has five Jewish voters or 500,000, pretty much every last one of them will send messages supportive of Israel to their Representative, and vote appropriately. AIPAC may well be taking credit it doesn’t deserve.

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