Nina Turner, running for U.S. Congress in Ohio’s 11th district, won the endorsement of the state’s largest newspaper Sunday — the latest show of momentum for the progressive champion who has been targeted for defeat by the Democratic Party’s more corporate-friendly establishment wing.
Citing the “pioneering civil rights legacy of the late U.S. Rep. Louis Stokes of Cleveland,” who served constituents in the district that spans portions of Cleveland and Cuyahoga County for 15 terms from 1968 to 1999, the Cleveland Plain Dealer endorsed Turner on July 4th by saying she would be the best candidate to replicate Stokes’ ability “to speak out for the rights, needs and interests of urban, largely poor constituents of color, too often neglected in the business of the U.S. Congress.”
According to the paper’s editorial:
Who best among the 13 Democrats on the Aug. 3 special primary ballot seeking the Democratic nod for this overwhelmingly Democratic district to carry on that legacy?
There is one person in this crowded field who has shown she isn’t afraid to stand up to power and to partisan shibboleths, who has the guts to say what she thinks and do what’s right for her constituents and country, who is passionate about public service and knows the issues, the personalities, the challenges better than anyone else in this race.
That person is Nina Turner.
The endorsement for the former state senator and national co-chair of Bernie Sanders’ 2020 presidential campaign comes ahead of next month’s special election to replace former Congresswoman Marcia Fudge, now serving as secretary for Housing and Urban Development in the Biden administration, and as establishment members of the party — including Hillary Clinton and Rep. James Clyburn of South Carolina — have moved against her candidacy.
While the paper advised Turner that she should come closer “to the center,” where the Plain Dealer claimed many Ohio voters in the district are, and urged her to be more “practical, not ideological,” the endorsement ultimately said that the 11th District “doesn’t need someone who will shrink into a corner of the Capitol once in office.”
“Turner is the heavyweight in this primary race,” the editorial continued, “compared with its other big fundraiser, Shontel Brown, 46, of Warrensville Heights. Brown is a pleasant but undistinguished member of Cuyahoga County Council who has little to show for her time in office…”
Turner welcomed the endorsement on Sunday.
“Today our movement received the endorsement of The Cleveland Plain Dealer. Thank you!” she tweeted. “We have an historic opportunity to deliver an agenda that puts working people at the center of our economy. To get there we need a Congress made up of leaders who never forget their purpose.”
“Together,” Turner continued, “we will deliver on an opportunity agenda that lifts our communities and builds an economy based on our shared prosperity, healthcare and education for all, living wages, a healthy planet, and fairness in our systems of policing and public safety.”