Patrick Murphy, one of the Democratic hopefuls in the race for Rep. Allen West's congressional seat, has joined several of his party colleagues -- including DNC Chairwoman Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz and former Rep. Alan Grayson -- to come out in support of the Occupy movement.
In an email to campaign supporters, Murphy says he is "proud to stand with the 99 percent" and denounced West's name-calling comments identifying the Occupy protesters as "communists," "Marxist," "Stalinist," and "socialist" in the same sentence and adding that they're just a bunch of "gangs."
"Allen West and his right-wing allies have no answer for the woes facing the middle class in America," Murphy says. "So once again, they've resorted to name-calling and cartoonish characterizations of progressives and the supporters of Occupy Wall Street."
Murphy's still got one year and one day until the general election -- the primary isn't until August -- but he and the other Democratic hopeful, former West Palm Beach Mayor Lois Frankel, have been consistently hammering away at West's short but strange stay in the House of Representatives.
Instead of calling the Occupy movement "laughable" or saying it's full of "the bad people," as West has done, Murphy decided to offer a different stance on the protesters.
Here's part of the email he sent out yesterday:
Allen West and his right-wing allies have no answer for the woes facing the middle class in America. So, once again, they've resorted to name calling and cartoonish characterizations of progressives and the supporters of Occupy Wall Street.
Despite the fact that Americans are hurting, Allen West has described the Occupy Wall Street movement as "laughable," calling the protesters "communists," "Stalinists," and "gangs."
When they dismiss the Occupy protests as simply a bunch of left-wing drum circles, they are deliberately ignoring the real plight of middle-class Americans and the ever-widening income gap.
Americans are angry because:
- There are 25 million unemployed and underemployed workers in the US
- The average Fortune 500 CEO makes $11 million, while an average worker makes under $30,000
- In the last 30 years, the income for the top 1% grew 275% while the bottom 99% saw less than 50% growth
- The average college student graduates with $28,000 in loan debt
When they label peaceful protesters as gangs, they are simply encouraging and legitimizing the suppression of the protesters' rights and freedoms.
Whether you join a protest or simply support the sentiment of the movement, you too should be angry at the hypocrisy of West and the Tea Party. While claiming to be Constitutionalists, they're quick to label those with an opposing view on health care, Medicare, or equal rights as a real threat to America.
While the protests call for accountability, Republicans in Washington are advocating even less in the way of consumer protections, and Wall Street regulations.
I am proud to stand with the 99%, proud to support the middle class, and proud to defend the rights of Americans to peacefully disrupt the conversation. If we're going to improve America's trajectory, progressives can't simply back down...
We need to get LOUDER!