May 27, 2022 - Politics & Policy
Biden-endorsed moderate Rep. Schrader loses to liberal challenger
Moderate Rep. Kurt Schrader (D-Ore.) lost his primary to progressive challenger Jamie McLeod-Skinner, the Associated Press reported on Friday.
Why it matters: Schrader is the only House Democrat to lose reelection to a non-incumbent so far this cycle. He was one of just a small handful of Democrats endorsed by President Biden.
- Rep. Shontel Brown (D-Ohio), the only other House Democrat Biden has endorsed so far this year, easily dispatched progressive foe Nina Turner earlier this month.
Go deeper: The contest was a clear clash between a progressive and one of the House Democratic Caucus's most centrist members.
- McLeod-Skinner, an attorney, local school board member and former House candidate, had the backing of Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and progressive groups, in addition to a slew of local parties and activists.
- Schrader, by contrast, voted against the House iteration of Democrats' $1.9 trillion Covid-19 relief bill and helped kill a prescription drug measure in Build Back Better. He also drew headlines for likening former President Trump's second impeachment to a "lynching."
- Schrader had one big advantage: money. He spent nearly $2.3 million by the end of April, compared to just under $700,000 spent by McLeod-Skinner.
The big picture: McLeod-Skinner's win was a progressive victory in an otherwise mixed election week for the left.
- In Pennsylvania, Senate candidate John Fetterman and House candidate Summer Lee, a democratic socialist, defeated their more moderate opponents.
- But progressives also lost House primaries to establishment-backed opponents in Kentucky and North Carolina.
What's next: McLeod-Skinner will have a race on her hands — Oregon's 5th district, which includes areas south of Portland, voted for Biden by only around 9 points in 2020.