Democracy for America (DFA), the nationwide, grassroots progressive organization that grew out of Howard Dean's insurgent 2004 presidential campaign, announced its first five congressional endorsements today, and lookie who made the cut:

Ilya Sheyman - IL-10
Joe Miklosi - CO-06
Eric Griego - NM-01
Mary Jo Kilroy - OH-03, and
Darcy Burner - WA-01

This doesn't come as much of a surprise, as DFA had previously endorsed Darcy Burner during her two previous House runs, but it should be noted that fellow Democrat Laura Ruderman, also running in the 1st, had also been endorsed by DFA during her unsuccessful run for Secretary of State in 2004. Not this time.

How important is DFA's endorsement? On its own, not that much, though with over a million members, it can certainly help drive a bunch of small individual contributions into Burner's coffers. But I think this endorsement speaks to a larger strength that Burner has that should help close some of the money advantage that self-funder Suzan DelBene brings to the table. Many of the grassroots progressive groups whose endorsement Burner will earn, are the type of groups who are not shy about picking early favorites from a crowded primary field. But the more establishment Democratic groups—the types that typically gravitate toward more centrist candidates like Ruderman and DelBene—they aren't as likely to get in early, for fear of pissing off the ultimately winner.

Come September and October, the usual suspects will dump buckets of dollars into this race, regardless of who wins the Democratic nomination. But it's the early money that will help determine who will be the beneficiary of all this late campaign cash.