Powerful state Democrat Kevin de León to challenge Feinstein for Senate

State Senate President Kevin de León, who has been at the forefront of Democratic efforts in Sacramento to counter the policies of President Trump, said Sunday that he will challenge Sen. Dianne Feinstein in next year’s election.

DeLeón made the announcement by posting an 82-second video online Sunday on his new U.S. Senate campaign website. In the video, de León talked about the hard work of his immigrant mother and his upbringing in a poor neighborhood.

“It doesn’t make a difference if it’s a Latino, African American, if it’s white, if it’s Asian American, if it’s a racially mixed community — poverty is poverty, and I think it’s incumbent on policy makers, on leaders, to provide real opportunity,” he said in the video.

De León’s announcement is likely to send shock waves through the Democratic Party nationally. The 84-year-old Feinstein has been in office since 1992, is the Senate’s ranking Democrat on the Judiciary Committee and has never faced a serious electoral challenge from within her party.

But progressives have been frustrated with Feinstein, saying she has not been tough enough on President Trump in a state that is at the center of left-wing opposition to the president. She has voted to confirm half of his 22 cabinet-level and other top appointees, and said at a Commonwealth Club event in San Francisco last month that Trump “has the ability to learn and to change. And if he does, he can be a good president. And that’s my hope.”

De León, 50, has put himself at the center of the state’s anti-Trump opposition. The Los Angeles Democrat sponsored a bill signed by Gov. Jerry Brown this month that restricts the ability of local and state law enforcement agencies to cooperate with federal authorities seeking to deport undocumented immigrants. He is also the author of a bill that would require California to chart a course for obtaining all its electric power from carbon-free sources by 2045, legislation that is on hold until next year.

Even though recent public polls show a softening of support for Feinstein, de León’ s challenge is steep. His opponent has near-universal name recognition, a place in history as California’s first female senator, a net worth of $79 million and the backing of the party establishment.

Soon after Feinstein announced for re-election last week, fellow Democrats including California’s other U.S. senator, Kamala Harris, and Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti endorsed her.

De León’s strategy will be to assemble a coalition that includes Latinos, African Americans and younger voters, and to advocate for issues close to the heart of supporters of Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt. Those include the idea of a single-payer, Medicare-for-all health care system, which Feinstein does not back.

Winning the support of the Sanders wing could result in a flood of small-dollar donations from outside California and grassroots support from inside the state.

One influential progressive, Daily Kos online site founder Markos Moulitsas, was enthusiastic about de León’s candidacy.

“Kevin de León’ represents modern California—aggressively progressive, innovative, and in touch with this state’s growth demographics,” Moulitsas said. “Dianne Feinstein has had an amazing run, but the California she thinks she represents — one in which we’re supposed to give Donald Trump the chance to be a great president — no longer exists. “

But Feinstein’s top political adviser and longtime strategist, Bill Carrick, pointed out that de León supported former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton over Sanders in the 2016 Democratic presidential primary.

“And now, suddenly, he’s the head of the progressive movement?” Carrick said. “He’s an establishment politician, and now he’s masquerading as the leader of the progressive movement.”

De León was born in San Diego, the son of a maid who emigrated from Mexico. He didn’t graduate from college until he was 36, but rose quickly into the upper levels of state power as a grassroots community organizer. He was elected to the state Assembly in 2006 and to the state Senate in 2010, representing a district that includes downtown and east Los Angeles.

De León began the legislative session in December with an aggressive anti-Trump tone, saying California would lead the “resistance” to the president’s policies that target illegal immigration and government efforts to minimize climate change. That tone remained a steady force throughout the legislative session that wrapped up last month.

De León has focused his legislative career on the environment, immigration and public safety. He led the Senate this year through major policies requiring two-thirds approval in both houses, including on a gas tax and vehicle registration fee to pay for the state’s transportation needs, extending California’s cap-and-trade program to combat climate change and a new real-estate fee to pay for affordable housing.

He is loathed by gun-rights groups for the several measures he has authored and supported over the years to restrict access to certain firearms. His bill last year to require ammunition background checks overlapped with a ballot measure by Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, pitting the pair at a time when de León was thought to be considering a run against Newsom for governor.

One question likely to arise is whether Democrats in the state Senate will want de León to step aside while he runs against Feinstein.

After the Legislature’s session ended last month, de León was asked how long he would remain Senate president pro tem. “I will be in this position as long as I want to be in this position,” he replied.

Other Democrats considering a run against Feinstein next year include billionaire San Francisco environmentalist Tom Steyer and Joseph Sanberg, a Los Angeles investor progressive activist.

“I am looking at the best way to take our government back from the political establishment and to stop Donald Trump,” Steyer said Sunday. “That includes a full consideration of running for the United States Senate.”

Joe Garofoli is The San Francisco Chronicle’s senior political writer. Email: jgarofoli@sfchronicle.com Twitter: @joegarofoli Melody Gutierrez is a San Francisco Chronicle staff writer. Email: mgutierrez@sfchronicle.com Twitter: @MelodyGutierrez


Powerful state Democrat Kevin de León to challenge Feinstein…

State Senate President Kevin de León, who has been at the forefront of Democratic efforts in Sacramento to counter the policies of President Trump, said Sunday that he will challenge Sen. Dianne Feinstein in next year’s election.

DeLeón made the announcement by posting an 82-second video online Sunday on his new U.S. Senate campaign website. In the video, de León talked about the hard work of his immigrant mother and his upbringing in a poor neighborhood.

“It doesn’t make a difference if it’s a Latino, African American, if it’s white, if it’s Asian American, if it’s a racially mixed community — poverty is poverty, and I think it’s incumbent on policy makers, on leaders, to provide real opportunity,” he said in the video.

De León’s announcement is likely to send shock waves through the Democratic Party nationally. The 84-year-old Feinstein has been in office since 1992, is the Senate’s ranking Democrat on the Judiciary Committee and has never faced a serious electoral challenge from within her party.

But progressives have been frustrated with Feinstein, saying she has not been tough enough on President Trump in a state that is at the center of left-wing opposition to the president. She has voted to confirm half of his 22 cabinet-level and other top appointees, and said at a Commonwealth Club event in San Francisco last month that Trump “has the ability to learn and to change. And if he does, he can be a good president. And that’s my hope.”

De León, 50, has put himself at the center of the state’s anti-Trump opposition. The Los Angeles Democrat sponsored a bill signed by Gov. Jerry Brown this month that restricts the ability of local and state law enforcement agencies to cooperate with federal authorities seeking to deport undocumented immigrants. He is also the author of a bill that would require California to chart a course for obtaining all its electric power from carbon-free sources by 2045, legislation that is on hold until next year.

Even though recent public polls show a softening of support for Feinstein, de León’ s challenge is steep. His opponent has near-universal name recognition, a place in history as California’s first female senator, a net worth of $79 million and the backing of the party establishment.

Soon after Feinstein announced for re-election last week, fellow Democrats including California’s other U.S. senator, Kamala Harris, and Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti endorsed her.

De León’s strategy will be to assemble a coalition that includes Latinos, African Americans and younger voters, and to advocate for issues close to the heart of supporters of Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt. Those include the idea of a single-payer, Medicare-for-all health care system, which Feinstein does not back.

Winning the support of the Sanders wing could result in a flood of small-dollar donations from outside California and grassroots support from inside the state.

One influential progressive, Daily Kos online site founder Markos Moulitsas, was enthusiastic about de León’s candidacy.

“Kevin de León’ represents modern California—aggressively progressive, innovative, and in touch with this state’s growth demographics,” Moulitsas said. “Dianne Feinstein has had an amazing run, but the California she thinks she represents — one in which we’re supposed to give Donald Trump the chance to be a great president — no longer exists. “

But Feinstein’s top political adviser and longtime strategist, Bill Carrick, pointed out that de León supported former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton over Sanders in the 2016 Democratic presidential primary.

“And now, suddenly, he’s the head of the progressive movement?” Carrick said. “He’s an establishment politician, and now he’s masquerading as the leader of the progressive movement.”

De León was born in San Diego, the son of a maid who emigrated from Mexico. He didn’t graduate from college until he was 36, but rose quickly into the upper levels of state power as a grassroots community organizer. He was elected to the state Assembly in 2006 and to the state Senate in 2010, representing a district that includes downtown and east Los Angeles.

De León began the legislative session in December with an aggressive anti-Trump tone, saying California would lead the “resistance” to the president’s policies that target illegal immigration and government efforts to minimize climate change. That tone remained a steady force throughout the legislative session that wrapped up last month.

De León has focused his legislative career on the environment, immigration and public safety. He led the Senate this year through major policies requiring two-thirds approval in both houses, including on a gas tax and vehicle registration fee to pay for the state’s transportation needs, extending California’s cap-and-trade program to combat climate change and a new real-estate fee to pay for affordable housing.

He is loathed by gun-rights groups for the several measures he has authored and supported over the years to restrict access to certain firearms. His bill last year to require ammunition background checks overlapped with a ballot measure by Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, pitting the pair at a time when de León was thought to be considering a run against Newsom for governor.

One question likely to arise is whether Democrats in the state Senate will want de León to step aside while he runs against Feinstein.

After the Legislature’s session ended last month, de León was asked how long he would remain Senate president pro tem. “I will be in this position as long as I want to be in this position,” he replied.

Other Democrats considering a run against Feinstein next year include billionaire San Francisco environmentalist Tom Steyer and Joseph Sanberg, a Los Angeles investor progressive activist.

“I am looking at the best way to take our government back from the political establishment and to stop Donald Trump,” Steyer said Sunday. “That includes a full consideration of running for the United States Senate.”

Joe Garofoli is The San Francisco Chronicle’s senior political writer. Email: jgarofoli@sfchronicle.com Twitter: @joegarofoli Melody Gutierrez is a San Francisco Chronicle staff writer. Email: mgutierrez@sfchronicle.com Twitter: @MelodyGutierrez


Bannon on GOP Establishment: ‘Nobody Can Run and Hide’

Steve Bannon has a stark message to Republican incumbents he considers part of the establishment: “Nobody can run and hide.”

President Donald Trump’s former chief strategist is promoting a field of potential primary challengers to take on disfavored Republicans in Congress and step up for open seats. Among the outsiders: a convicted felon, a perennial candidate linked to an environmental conspiracy theory and a Southern lawmaker known for provocative ethnic and racial comments.

It’s an insurgency that could imperil Republican majorities in the House and Senate. Bannon called it a “populist nationalist conservative revolt” in a speech to religious conservatives in Washington on Saturday.

The emerging Bannon class of rabble-rousers shares limited ideological ties but a common intent to upend Washington and knock out Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., standard-bearer of the establishment.

Trump on Steve Bannon: ‘We’ll See What Happens’

[NATL] Trump on Steve Bannon: 'We'll See What Happens'

So intent is Bannon on bringing down McConnell that he laid down this marker Saturday to some of the incumbents at risk of a challenge from his flank of the party: disavow McConnell, satisfy other conditions and possibly escape the wrath.

“Until that time,” he said, the message to the elite is: “They’re coming for you.”

The crop of outsider candidates unnerves a GOP that lost seats — and a shot at the Senate majority — in 2010 and 2012 with political novices and controversial nominees and fears a stinging repeat in 2018.

“The main thing that binds them together is a rejection of the Republican Party establishment, a rejection of the political elites, the financial elites and the media elites,” said Andy Surabian, a former Bannon aide and senior adviser to the pro-Trump PAC Great America Alliance.

Bannon told the religious conservatives that economic nationalism and anti-globalism, the same forces he said elected Trump, can overpower Republican elites.

“This is our war,” he said. “The establishment started it. … You all are gonna finish it.”

Trump’s Pick of Steve Bannon Draws Criticism

[NATL-NY] Trump's Pick of Steve Bannon Draws Criticism

To escape it, he suggested, Senate incumbents can oppose McConnell, eliminate the filibuster that he says is impeding Trump’s agenda and denounce Tennessee Sen. Bob Corker, a Republican who gave a scorching appraisal of Trump as an untethered leader who could lead the U.S. into another world war.

Bannon singled out John Barrasso of Wyoming, Deb Fischer of Nebraska and Dean Heller of Nevada as senators who “vote the right way” but did not step up to condemn Corker. There’s still time for a “mea culpa,” he said, implying such senators could be spared his insurgency if they toed his line.

Senate Republicans had been upbeat about adding to their 52-48 majority, especially with Democrats defending more seats next year, 10 in states Trump won in last year’s presidential election.

But the Bannon challenge could cost them, leaving incumbents on the losing end in primaries or GOP candidates roughed up for the general election.

Bannon helped elevate twice-suspended Judge Roy Moore, who won an Alabama runoff over McConnell’s pick, Sen. Luther Strange. Moore was removed from office for refusing to remove a Ten Commandments monument from Alabama’s judicial building, then suspended for insisting probate judges refuse same-sex couples marriage licenses. He faces Democrat Doug Jones in a December election where polls find a single-digit lead for the Republican, a remarkable development in Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ heavily GOP state.

In West Virginia, the grassroots conservative group Tea Party Express endorsed Patrick Morrissey, also a Great America Alliance choice, over establishment favorite Rep. Evan Jenkins in a competitive race to unseat Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin.

Trump Says Iran Deal Not in US National Security Interests

[NATL] Trump Says Iran Deal Not in US National Security Interests

Consider Mississippi, where state Sen. Chris McDaniel lost to veteran Sen. Thad Cochran in 2014, but is weighing a bid next year against Roger Wicker, the state’s other senator in the national legislature.

McDaniel misdefined “mamacita,” the Spanish word for mommy as “hot mama,” and said he would withhold his tax payments if the government paid reparations for slavery. He also was forced to denounce a supporter who photographed and posted an image of Cochran’s bed-ridden wife.

He argued in court that his 2014 loss was due in part to African-Americans fraudulently voting in the primary. He’s back again and speaking in Bannon terms.

“They will do anything, they will say anything, to just maintain a hold on power,” McDaniel said in an Associated Press interview about McConnell and his allies.

In Arizona, former state Sen. Kelli Ward, who is challenging Trump antagonist Sen. Jeff Flake, remains known for entertaining the debunked theory that jet aircraft are used to affect the weather or poison people intentionally.

Former New York Rep. Michael Grimm, who spent eight months in prison for federal tax evasion, is challenging two-term Rep. Dan Donovan — with the encouragement of Bannon.

Trump Signs Executive Order Re-Working Parts of Health Care

[NATL] Trump Signs Executive Order Re-Working Parts of Health Care

In announcing his candidacy, Grimm was apologetic for his conviction. Still out there are viral videos of him telling a television reporter during an on-camera interview at the U.S. Capitol after a question he didn’t like: “You ever do that to me again, I’ll throw you off this (expletive) balcony.”

House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., is sticking with the incumbent: “I support Dan Donovan, plain and simple,” Ryan said this past week.

But he stopped short of suggesting Bannon stand down. “It’s a free country,” he said.

In Nevada, Bannon is encouraging Republican Danny Tarkanian in his challenge to Heller. Tarkanian, son of famed basketball coach Jerry Tarkanian, is 0-5 in state and federal elections.

These outsiders share strong opposition to increasing the nation’s debt even if it means an economy-rattling default. They also share unsparing criticism of congressional Republicans, especially McConnell, for failing to dismantle the Obama-era health care law, an unfulfilled seven-year-old promise.

In Wyoming, Erik Prince, founder of security contractor Blackwater, is considering a Republican primary challenge to Barrasso, a senior member of the Senate GOP leadership team. Bannon has urged Prince, brother of Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, to run.

President Trump Gets Big Reaction After He Says ‘Huge’

[NATL] President Trump Gets Big Reaction After He Says 'Huge'

Bannon has given at least one Senate incumbent — Texas Sen. Ted Cruz — a pass, but not others.

Beaumont reported from Des Moines, Iowa.

Haki Madhubuti reflects on 50 years of cultivating black arts

Poet and educator Haki Madhubuti could easily spend every waking hour repeating “I told you so” when it comes to what’s at stake for black America, but he’s characteristically doing something about it rather than talking about it.

It, in this case, is educating future generations of black children in knowing and loving themselves by operating three South Side schools (two elementary, one preschool), publishing meaningful cultural works by black authors and securing the future of Chicago State University’s Master of Fine Arts program while revitalizing the campus’ annual Gwendolyn Brooks writer’s conference. Madhubuti describes the late poet as his “cultural mother.”

“If you are a whole people, you’ve got to be involved in everything that goes into building whole people … in schools, in books, our education is critical,” the 75-year-old Madhubuti shared during a chat with The Chicago Reporter in a chilled, book-filled room at Third World Press Foundation headquarters on South Dobson Avenue.

The publishing house Madhubuti founded in 1967, with support from Johari Amini and Carolyn Rodgers, is celebrating 50 years of cultivating whole people, particularly black people, but including brown ones, poor whites and anyone outside the full embrace of the monied interests that dominate civic life in these United States. As white supremacy boldly declares a loud and proud space in the public conversation, as it did in the 1950s when he made the Great Migration from Little Rock to Detroit then Chicago, Madhubuti is unwavering in his belief in the necessity of building sustainable black institutions. In these institutions African-Americans “control their own cultural imperatives” in the service of “the healthy replication of themselves”—emphasis on the “healthy” part.

“Look at our community,” he said. “You don’t see serious black businesses in the black community. Most of the serious businesses are franchises, which we don’t own, mom-and-pop stores, a few barbershops and some beauty shops. In terms of serious, I mean even mid-level black businesses that employ, say, 100 people or more. You don’t see anything like that.”

But then, Madhubuti manages to come up with a few: churches, fraternities and sororities, funeral homes — and Third World Press Foundation.

Born of the Black Arts Movement sparked by the 1965 assassination of Malcolm X, the press began with $400 and a mimeograph machine that Madhubuti operated from his Englewood apartment on South Ada Street. He started out selling chapbooks on the street for a dollar, deciding to model his business after Dudley Randall’s Broadside Press in Detroit, which published Madhubuti’s first book, “Black Pride,” with an introduction by Randall, a black poet of note. That, and an intro by Brooks in Madhubuti’s second book, “Don’t Cry, Scream,” was a sort of red-carpet debut for a young poet.

It is auspicious that an institution dedicated to powering the black community’s drive to know and narrate its world is taking stock of its legacy at a particularly polarizing time, marked by racial demagoguery at the highest levels. From debates over Confederate monuments in public areas or the right of professional athletes to protest police brutality and racist public policies without being fired or suspended, the time is ripe for the straight talk for which Third World Press Foundation is known.

Consider the titles published over five decades: Madhubuti’s bestselling “Black Men: Obsolete, Single, Dangerous?”; “The Destruction of Black Civilization,” by Chancellor Williams; and “By Any Means Necessary–Malcolm X: Real, Not Reinvented,” edited by Herb Boyd, Ron Daniels and Maulana Karenga, the father of Kwanzaa. Or recall the powerful voices amplified by the press, such as Pulitzer Prize-winning Brooks, legal scholar Derrick Bell, poet Margaret Walker Alexander and author Chris Benson, the biographer of Mamie Till Mobley, Emmett Till’s mother.

Madhubuti, a poet and essayist, has authored more than 20 books. His career was seeded in the early 1960s, when he was attending college and volunteering at the Ebony Museum, the precursor to the DuSable Museum. Early on, DuSable was cultivated in the Bronzeville home of Margaret and Charlie Burroughs before locating in Washington Park in 1973.

“I was rough, raw and ready to fight everybody trying to write poetry,” said Madhubuti, who is emphatic that poetry, with Brooks’ support, was the catalyst for everything he’s been able to create in the world. “She saw something of value in me.”

A 1969 Ebony magazine account of his appearance (as Don Lee, his given name) at the International Poetry Forum in Pittsburgh with Brooks captured his manner. Writer David Llorens described “an ingratiating black matron who sought to assure [Brooks] that her works had been well-received. Then, pointing to the wiry, bearded figure walking a few steps ahead, she whispered: ‘But he frightens me.’ ”

Of Brooks’ response, Llorens wrote, “Brevity as a value has roots in Miss Brooks: ‘He should,’ she responded dispassionately, keeping her pace.”

In the current national moment of dueling narratives over the value of blackness and the meaning of American-ness, it’s critical for African-Americans to have a full grip on history and its implications for thriving into the future, Madhubuti said. That includes using whatever resources and talents they have to build institutions, starting young.

“What we try to do in our own way is become decision-makers, and that’s critical because in this country, most people make choices within the parameters of other people’s decisions,” he explained. “But when you find people with money, influence, in control of the structures and institutions, they’re the decision-makers. So how do you become a decision-maker?”

“If you’re in art, you’re a decision-maker because you’re making art,” said Madhubuti, who views creative output as a form of ownership and a building block for institution building. “So for us, it has always been critical to understand that if you don’t own yourself, ownership of anything else is almost out of the question.”

The power of art has driven Madhubuti since he was a teen, when his mother sent him to the Detroit Public Library’s main branch to read Richard Wright’s “Black Boy.” Born in Arkansas, Madhubuti, ne Don Lee, was raised with a younger sister by his mother, a sex worker whose customers included preachers, rabbis and priests.

“I resisted at first, because I basically hated myself. I hated our circumstances, my color, my everything,” he said, describing how he retreated to an “unpeopled” section of the library and inhaled Wright’s prose. “For the first time in my life, I was reading literature that was not an insult to my own personhood. So I finished ‘Black Boy’ in less than, you know, 24 hours. I gave it to my mother and went back and started checking out everything Richard Wright had ever published at that time.

“That was my avenue out,” Madhubuti said. “Arts saved my life. Starting with literary non-fiction, fiction, poetry and then I moved to other areas.”

He needed saving.

Madhubuti’s mother, Helen Maxine Graves Lee, was murdered at age 34 by a customer. He was just 15 then. In a memoir of his early years, “Yellow Black,” Madhubuti describes an existence in which “step-fathers” frequented the family home on the city’s East Side, an existence clothed in second-hand finds and more odd jobs than any boy should shoulder. After completing two years at Detroit’s Cass Technical High School (a school for outstanding students), he left his pregnant sister and retreated to Chicago to live with his father, James Lee.

“I ended up staying with him a week until he tried to put his hands on me,” Madhubuti explained about his unwillingness to put up with physical abuse. “I left and went to live in a YMCA on 50th Street and Indiana Avenue and went to Dunbar, finishing a two-year course in one year.”

After high school, Madhubuti enlisted in the U.S. Army. When he came back to Chicago, he attended community college, then Roosevelt University. He caught the eye of Brooks, who “adopted” him after a fashion, encouraging him and writing a recommendation for his first teaching job at Columbia College, one she had vacated. Madhubuti’s academic career supported his publishing pursuits and family life as he, with his wife Safisha Madhubuti, were able to continue the business of institution-building as his teaching took him to Cornell University, Howard University, Chicago State University and his last appointment at DePaul. He earned an MFA from the Iowa Writer’s Workshop and was awarded three honorary Doctor of Letters degrees, the last from Spelman College in 2006.

Through it all, he has remained steadfast in his passion for the arts — he and his wife are passionate collectors of visual arts — and the fate of black people.

“Very few people realize we built the country,” Madhubuti said. “This country was built on the backs of enslaved Africans. That’s us. If I had four or five million people to work for me for free, I could build a country, too. This whole system of international capitalism or colonialism that certainly exists in Iraq now and Afghanistan–monopoly capitalism is basically taking a toll on people around the world. It certainly has taken its toll on us.

“But,” he said, “the point always is, what do you do about it?”

On Sept. 30-Oct. 7, the Third World Press Foundation will celebrate 50 years of “serious, serious struggle,” with keynotes, screenings, spoken word events and conversations that include a who’s who of black thought. Special guests include Ta-Nehisi Coates, Cornel West, Sonia Sanchez, Danny Glover, Cassandra Wilson, Karenga, Nikki Giovanni and musician Nicole Mitchell. Several Third World Press Foundation authors will be in attendance. 

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MacArthur Foundation Announces Its 2017 Class Of ‘Geniuses’

From a reporter who’s dedicated her career to documenting segregation in America’s education system, to one of the first computer scientists to hack an automobile, to an artist who doubles as a counter-surveillance researcher, this year’s roster of MacArthur Fellows celebrates yet another year of exceptional human achievement.

The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation announced the latest recipients of its annual MacArthur Fellowship ― frequently referred to as the “Genius Grant” ― early Wednesday morning. Nikole Hannah-Jones, Stefan Savage and Trevor Paglen are but three members of an impressive class of 2017 fellows, newly endowed with a $625,000 check and an accolade previously attached to icons like Susan Sontag, astrophysicist Joseph Taylor and musical tour de force Lin-Manuel Miranda.

The MacArthur Foundation began doling out grants in 1981 in an effort to identify and extol high-achieving individuals in a wide range of disciplines. (The 2017 list of grantees counts a painter, immunologist, human rights strategist, urban planner and novelist among its two dozen-deep roster.) The once-$50,000 award has since ballooned into the six-figure, “no strings attached” grant we know today. There are no restrictions governing what recipients do with their fellowship bounty.

This year, the fellows include nine women, 14 men and one gender-non-conforming individual, ranging in age from 33 to 63. See the entire list of new “geniuses” below.

For more MacArthur Fellowship coverage, check out our interviews with grantees Rhiannon Giddens and Viet Thanh Nguyen.

Jesmyn Ward (Fiction Writer)


Jesmyn Ward is a 40-year-old fiction writer based in New Orleans, Louisiana, whose stories bring black, marginalized communities to the center. Her three novels, including Salvage the Bones (2011) and Sing, Unburied, Sing (2017), address brutal and often ignored realities including poverty, racism, addiction and incarceration with honesty, affection and rigor. 

Gabriel Victora (Immunologist)


Gabriel Victora is a 40-year-old immunologist working in New York City. He adapted and perfected cellular imaging methods to better visualize the process through which adaptive immunity develops. His analysis of B cells yielded “the most definitive evidence to date that affinity maturation of antibodies occurs in a manner akin to Darwinian evolution,” a previously hypothesized but not ultimately proven conclusion that will benefit the creation of new and more potent vaccines. 

Tyshawn Sorey (Composer and Musician)


Tyshawn Sorey is a 37-year-old multi-instrumentalist, composer, performer and conductor in Middletown, Connecticut. His singular practice straddles the line between improvisation and composition, collapsing boundaries between genres and traditions including Western classical, American and Ethiopian creative expressions, resulting in experimental, avant-garde arrangements that test the limits of musical performance. 

Yuval Sharon (Opera Director and Producer)


Yuval Sharon is a 37-year-old director and producer of opera whose unorthodox performances ― often immersive and itinerant ― challenge the predominant understanding of what opera can be. His 2014 piece Hopscotch: A Mobile Opera for 24 Carstook place in and around Los Angeles, with audience members commuting in limousines as singers and musicians emerged at various locations ― and within the vehicles themselves ― to tell a dynamic story within a living city. 

Stefan Savage (Computer Scientist)


Stefan Savage is a 48-year-old computer scientist whose interdisciplinary techniques address cybersecurity in the age of “smart” devices. Based in LaJolla, California, Savage recently demonstrated how an automobile could be hacked remotely and began working with car manufacturers to reduce security threats. His research in internet-related crimes, and the technological and cultural blindspots that enable them, prove critical in today’s constantly evolving technology landscape. 

Damon Rich (Designer and Urban Planner)


Damon Rich is a 42-year-old designer and urban planner whose strategies uproot the systems of oppression and discrimination embedded in cities’ layouts through predicaments like division, gentrification and environmental injustice. The Newark, New Jersey-based planner is known for his clever and sometimes witty approach to the field, as evidenced in his 2009 book Red Lines Housing Crisis Learning Center, which used the Queens Museum’s 1,000-square-foot representation of New York City to visualize the foreclosure crisis. His work invites citizens who are often disenfranchised to the forefront of conversations about urban design, bringing democracy to the city space.

Derek Peterson (Historian)


Derek Peterson is a 46-year-old historian and professor at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, where he studies and preserves East African texts, specifically in Gikuyu and Swahili, to challenge predominant narratives regarding colonialism and nationalism in Africa. Peterson’s research incorporates an unrivaled array of written materials, ranging from diaries and religious pamphlets to syllabi and dictionaries, which speak to the interplay of motivations, perspectives, traditions and contexts at play in these often overlooked materials. 

Betsy Levy Paluck (Psychologist)


Betsy Levy Paluck is a 39-year-old research psychologist at Princeton University concerned with destructive patterns of human behavior, including discrimination, bullying and ethnic conflict. Paluck’s field research, which has taken her from American high schools to post-conflict Rwanda, determined that, as the MacArthur Foundation describes, “to change behavior, it is more important to target individuals’ perceptions of social norms than their personal beliefs.”

Trevor Paglen (Artist and Geographer)


Trevor Paglen is a 43-year-old, Berlin-based conceptual artist and geographer who uses public records and declassified documents as artistic materials, exposing the alarming grip military and corporate power possess in today’s climate of mass surveillance. His practice includes the establishing of “limit telephotography,” which uses high-power telescopes and cameras to photograph secret prisons and military bases.

Kate Orff (Landscape Architect)


Kate Orff is a 45-year-old landscape architect and founding principal of SCAPE, a Manhattan-based urban design studio that believes in urban landscapes’ ability to revive ecosystems, adapt to the difficulties posed by climate change and connect individuals. Orff collaborates with ecologists, engineers, educators, artists and community members to draw attention to the natural histories of specific regions, whether through infrastructure initiatives or podcast tours. 

Viet Thanh Nguyen (Fiction Writer and Cultural Critic)


Viet Thanh Nguyen is a 45-year-old writer, cultural critic and University of Southern California professor who uses fiction to provide a “voice to the voiceless,” specifically by humanizing underrepresented minorities. His 2015 novel The Sympathizer is a spy thriller told from the perspective of a communist double agent in and after the Vietnam War. His stories offer alternative understandings of well-trodden American war stories, where marginalized voices are often obscured and erased. 

Rami Nashashibi (Community Leader)


Rami Nashashibi is a 45-year-old community leader and the executive director of the Inner-City Muslim Action Network (IMAN). The organization, based in Chicago’s South Side, works to provide health and wellness services, community organizing, criminal justice reform, arts enrichment and other services to low income residents. His Muslim Run Corner Store Campaign brought a wider selection of healthy foods to overlooked neighborhoods and eased racial tensions between the predominately Arab immigrant store owners and black patrons. 

Taylor Mac (Theater Artist)


Taylor Mac is a 44-year-old, New York-based theater artist ― and at times a playwright, performance artist, actor and all three at once. Mac, who uses the gender pronoun judy, breaks down distinctions between highbrow and lowbrow art to toy with cultural assumptions about gender, performance and identity. judy’s 24-hour piece “A 24-Decade History of Popular Music” (2014–2016), explores the history of American popular music through a queer lens, highlighting the instances in which pop culture innovations have emerged as weapons against intolerance and injustice.

Cristina Jiménez Moreta (Social Justice Organizer)


Cristina Jiménez Moreta is a 33-year-old social justice organizer, as well as the co-founder and the executive director of United We Dream, a nationwide network dedicated to helping immigrant families based in Washington, D.C. Moreta came to the United States from Ecuador as a 13-year-old undocumented immigrant. She has since worked to put young people at the forefront of a strategic effort to challenge the stigmas undocumented youth face and enact the policy changes necessary to protect them from deportation and offer a pathway to citizenship. 

Rhiannon Giddens (Singer, Instrumentalist and Songwriter)


Rhiannon Giddens is a 40-year-old singer, instrumentalist, songwriter, musical historian and activist based in Greensboro, North Carolina. Having trained as an opera singer before mastering the fiddle and five-string banjo, Giddens illuminates the overlooked influence of African-American artists to genres like folk and country. “I’m really interested in shining a light on those aspects of musical history that have been traditionally neglected and left behind,” she told the MacArthur Foundation. “Because I feel that our current situation can be explained by what’s going on culturally in years past that hasn’t been addressed.” 

Nikole Hannah-Jones (Journalist)


Nikole Hannah-Jones is a 41-year-old investigative journalist for The New York Times Magazine who often explores the effects of segregation on the American education system. Her work, including the 2016 article “Choosing a School for My Daughter in a Segregated City”, combines historical research and political analysis with first-person accounts, bringing the persistent reality of systemic racism and its pernicious effect on children and communities into sharp focus.

Jason De León (Anthropologist)


Jason De León is an anthropologist at the University of Michigan who combines ethnographic analysis, forensic science and archaeological research in his work studying migration from Latin America to the United States. His 2015 book The Land of Open Graves: Living and Dying on the Migrant Trail, investigates the approximately 300 people a year who die attempting to cross the U.S.-Mexico border, often with no identification or belongings on their person. The work explores who they are, how they die and what happens to them afterward. 

Emmanuel Candès (Mathematician and Statistician) 


Emmanuel Candès is a 47-year-old applied mathematician and statistician at Stanford University. His research, as explained by The MacArthur Foundation, “focuses on reconstructing high-resolution images from small numbers of random measurements, as well as recovering the missing entries in massive data tables.” Candès compared the technique, which is applicable in fields from diagnostic healthcare to radar imaging, to inferring a customer’s Netflix preferences from the limited assortment of movies she views and rates.

Dawoud Bey (Photographer and Educator)


Dawoud Bey is a 63-year-old photographer and educator who creates deeply engaging portraits of individuals from overlooked communities and reimagines how cultural institutions can better serve the communities in which they are based. In 2013, the Chicago-based artist created “The Birmingham Project,” a photo series paying tribute to the six children killed in the 1963 bombing of the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church and its aftermath in Birmingham, Alabama. His more recent series, “Harlem Redux,” explores the transformative effects of gentrification on the historic black neighborhood.  

Regina Barzilay (Computer Scientist) 


Regina Barzilay is a 46-year-old computational linguist at the department of electrical engineering and computer science at MIT. Barzilay develops machine learning methods that enable machines to interpret human language and perform useful tasks. “One day machines can communicate with us in the same way we communicate with each other,” she told the MacArthur Foundation. Barzilay is currently exploring how machine learning can apply to the field of oncology, specifically in identifying trends that affect early diagnosis, treatment and disease prevention.

Annie Baker (Playwright)


Annie Baker is a 36-year-old playwright, based in New York, known for upending expectations of what kinds of people, language and situations are worthy of theatrical interpretation. Her 2009 production “Circle Mirror Transformation” takes place in a community acting class, in which five budding actors participate in exercises that illuminate elements of their interior selves. In 2010′s “The Aliens,” three amateur songwriters get high next to a dumpster, communicating primarily not through language but physical tics and cues. 

Greg Asbed (Human Rights Strategist)


Greg Asbed is a human rights strategist and a co-founder of the Coalition of Immokalee Workers and Fair Food Program (CIW) in Immokalee, Florida. For decades, the CIW has fought to improve conditions for low-wage workers and provide protections from sexual assault, wage theft and other abuses in the workplace. With his approach, dubbed worker-driven social responsibility (WSR), which has already spread from crop industries in Florida to the dairy industry in Vermont and garment industry in Bangladesh, he hopes to transform workplaces around the world. 

Sunil Amrith (Historian)


Sunil Amrith is a 38-year-old historian in the department of South Asian studies at Harvard University. He studies migration in South and Southeast Asia, particularly in relation to the movement of people and goods across the Bay of Bengal, which has occurred for centuries and continues to impact culture to this day. His 2013 book Crossing the Bay of Bengal examines how climate and environment shape the lives of ordinary Indians, and his upcoming work will delve into how climate change ― specifically monsoons ― continue to alter South and Southeast Asian history.

Njideka Akunyili Crosby (Painter)


Njideka Akunyili Crosby is a 32-year-old figurative painter, born in Nigeria and based in Los Angeles, whose work combines techniques, media and subjects to visualize the hybrid reality of the immigrant experience. Crosby’s multimedia paintings invite viewers into her own intimate world, introducing them to her home and her family, to capture the global story of existing in between boundaries, cultures and traditions. At once accessible and incredibly dense, Crosby’s images offer textured representations of spaces, people and lives that fold in multiple perspectives and defy simple categorization.  

RankTribe™ Black Business Directory News – Arts & Entertainment

Group with ties to City Hall pols backing striking workers is also lobbyist for Charter Communications

One of the city’s most influential lobbying firms is playing both sides of the street in the Spectrum strike.

The low-profile but high-powered MirRam Group — with close ties to major players in City Hall who support the striking workers — is a registered lobbyist for Charter Communications, state records show.

Charter, which owns cable giant Spectrum, is embroiled in a grim labor battle with 1,800 members of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers. The IBEW Local 3 members have been without a paycheck for seven months now and soon will lose unemployment benefits.

The techs went on strike March 28 over Charter’s demands to give up their health care and pension funds during contract negotiations.

Many unions to join Local 3 rally against Charter Communications

Even as MirRam has signed on as a lobbyist for Charter, it’s been a political consultant to three of the most outspoken critics of the company’s position in the labor dispute: Mayor de Blasio, City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito and Public Advocate Letitia James.

Not Released (NR)

Tom Rutledge is the CEO of Charter Communications.

(Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

James, who hired MirRam in 2013 as a consultant, wrote a letter to Charter CEO Tom Rutledge on April 4, calling on him to abandon his “unconscionable” demands and settle on a contract. De Blasio, who tapped MirRam in April to consult on his reelection bid, repeatedly urged Charter to settle its issues and called Rutledge to push for a deal.

Mark-Viverito, who has longstanding ties to MirRam managing partner Luis Miranda, also sent letters to Charter honchos stressing the need to resolve the dispute, and she attended strike relief events.

All three pols marched across the Brooklyn Bridge with Local 3 strikers last month. They declined to comment on MirRam’s dual roles. But all three reiterated their full support for the strikers when contacted by the Daily News. A spokesman for MirRam Group said the organization doesn’t comment on its clients.

Unions relieve Spectrum workers from strike for a day with picnic

Public records show that the firm — founded by Miranda, who is father to Broadway star Lin-Manuel Miranda — earned $60,000 this spring and again last fall as a Charter lobbyist. It also took in $30,000 in the spring of 2016 from Time Warner Cable, just before it was bought by Charter and added to the Spectrum brand.

The terms of the contract, signed by Miranda himself, call on MirRam Group to promote Charter and its interests with “key public officials” on the city and state level. This includes monitoring legislative developments that could affect Charter and developing messaging to “promote Charter’s public policy interests,” the agreement said. It also says that MirRam Group can’t “represent other clients on matters adverse to or in conflict with” its stated goals.

In charitable circles, Luis Miranda is known as a strong supporter of Hispanic causes, with a special affection for Puerto Rico, where he was born.

Chris Erikson, business manager for Local 3, said many of the striking workers fighting to save their health care and pensions are Hispanic. “Approximately 82% of the membership is African-American and Hispanic, and thousands are Puerto Rican,” he said.

Audit will probe Charter Communications’ use of non-N.Y.workers

IBEW currently has almost 30 electricians in Puerto Rico, volunteers who are laboring to bring power back to the hurricane-ravaged island, Erikson added.

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‘Acoustic Phenomena’ To Be Recorded By World-Renowned Multimedia Composer at Chaco Culture National Historical Park

Artist in residence FREE Presentation

“Like a landscape photographer bringing the eye to focus on the majesty of nature, I intend to do the same with audio.” ”

— NPS Artist in Residence, Grant Cutler

SANTA FE, NEW MEXICO, USA, October 14, 2017 /EINPresswire.com/ — The Artist has arrived! New York-based composer and multimedia artist, Grant Culter, concentrates his artistic focus in sensory experiences as Chaco Canyon National Historical Park’s newest Artist-in-Residence. The program is offered as the collaboration between the National Park Service and non-profit organization, National Parks Arts Foundation.

There will be a FREE presentation and field-recording workshop offered to the public on October 28th . Culter will be hosting the event, where he looks forward to assisting guests with soundtracking the distinctive auditory ambiance of the park. “In facilitating recordings, and the act of listening to sounds around them amplified in headphones, I hope to present to others a new tool with which to engage with the richness of this environment…” Said the artist, regarding his intended outcome of the workshop. The artist will also be leading discussions regarding his artistic process and productive experience at the Chaco Culture Visitor Center Auditorium.

Chaco Culture National Historical Park exudes mystery through the National Park Service’s preservation of the eleven unmatched ceremonial structures and ancient pueblos, which are attributed to Chacoan culture throughout the Southwest. As a Dark Skies certified location, famed as an ideal place for astronomy, Culter’s study of atmospheric sound will be a completely new observation of the ancestral complex. “Like a landscape photographer bringing the eye to focus on the majesty of nature, I intend to do the same with audio.” He said regarding his goal during the residency.

Chaco Culture NHP’s fascinating history directly links with Culter’s proposal, which expresses interest in using his art of sound work from the park to alleviate everyday stress caused by noise pollution in the metropolitan populous. Working predominantly with field-recordings and sound layering, the exploratory musician aims to transport the daily ambient sounds of the ancient pueblos to the metropolitan public. “As a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Chaco Culture National Historical Park holds the reverberation and resonance of ancient urban activity with a complex social structure. There’s a fascinating duality between the current serenity of the park, versus what must have once been a very lively setting,” said Ortega, the NPAF founder, and former Chaco Artist-in-Residence.

The National Parks Arts Foundation (NPAF) invites artists who have interest working in the National Parks to artistically interpret sites of historical and national significance. The National Parks Arts Foundation, in cooperation with the National Park Service, is the only non-profit offering these programs, nationwide. With National Parks participating in the program, the opportunity to create timeless works inspired by these irreplaceable sites is calling to the national and international artist community to participate.

The Artist-in-Residence program offered by the National Parks Arts Foundation is an unmatched opportunity offered to national and international artists of all mediums and careers. The foundation offers the only nationwide program for arts in our National Parks. For current applications to various unique Parks, please visit –NationalParksArtsfoundation.org

Public Engagements

Artist’s Final Presentation and Public Workshop – Chaco Culture National Historical Park, Visitor Center Auditorium: October 28th at 3 pm.

More About Chaco Culture History National Historical Park-
Chaco Culture NHP was at the center of Pueblo culture in what is now the Southwest of The USA. The park is famed for its pristinely preserved ceremonial structures, which are of unmatched size throughout the Southwest. The proximate scenery is vast desert surrounded by red hills and mesas, which are home to a number of plants and animals that cannot be found in any other parts of the world. Constructed by refined masonry, the many story structures exhibit the complex social system and mystifying records of Chacoan culture that continuously fascinate the international archeology community.

More About The National Parks Arts Foundation (NPAF)-
The National Parks Arts Foundation is a 501(c)3 non-profit dedicated to the importance of the National Parks of the U.S. by creating dynamic opportunities for artworks that are based in our National Parks, National Monuments and World Heritage Sites NPAF National Park projects are supported by partnerships and generous donations.

For more information on how you can support NPAF arts programs nationwide contact:
Website: www.nationalparksartsfoundation.org
Email: media@nationalparksartsfoundation.org
Phone Number : (202) 838- 6098

We invite donors to help support art in the Parks through National Parks Arts Foundation, on our website.

Cecilia Wainright
National Parks Arts Foundation
202-838-6098
email us here

Wireless Bluetooth Headset Market: Industry News, Trends, Share, Growth, Opportunity and Forecast-2024

Wireless Bluetooth

Wireless Bluetooth Headset image

“Wireless Bluetooth Headset Market: Global Demand Analysis & Opportunity Outlook 2024”

BROOKLYN, NEW YORK, UNITED STATES, October 14, 2017 /EINPresswire.com/ — The global wireless bluetooth headset market is segmented into product type such as bluetooth stereo headset and bluetooth-mono headset. Among these segments, bluetooth stereo headset segment is expected to occupy the top position in the market during the forecast period. Bluetooth stereo headset comes with two earpieces and is used for both listening to music and voice calls. Moreover, bluetooth-mono headset segment is also expected to expand at a significant pace during the forecast period. The demand for bluetooth-mono headset is expected to increase in call centers and other places where an operator needs to know what is going on around him.

Global wireless bluetooth headset market is expected to expand at a robust compound annual growth rate (CAGR) during the forecast period. Moreover, the global wireless bluetooth headset market is expected to expand on the back of growing media streaming devices market during the forecast period.

The multi brand stores segment by distribution channel is likely to grow at remarkable pace during the forecast period. Rising disposable income of the consumers and increased spending are some of the major factors which are likely to bolster the growth of global wireless bluetooth headsets market in near future.

Rising adoption of smart phones

Increasing number of smartphones users across the globe due to availability of smart phones at affordable prices is a key factor which is anticipated to escalate the demand for wireless bluetooth headsets during the forecast period. Further, better compatibility of wireless bluetooth headsets with smart phones and other media streaming devices are also projected to propel the growth of global wireless bluetooth headsets market during the forecast period.

Request Report Sample@ https://www.researchnester.com/sample-request/2/rep-id-387

Growing urban population across the globe

Rising urbanization and rising disposable income of the consumers are anticipated to be the dynamic factors behind the growth of market. Further, the demand for smart phones and their accessories are envisioned to rise due to increasing spending and affordability of the consumers.
However, presence of local vendors in market and their low price offerings coupled with availability of counterfeit products in market are likely to hinder the growth of global wireless bluetooth headset market during the forecast period.

The report titled “Wireless Bluetooth Headset Market: Global Demand Analysis & Opportunity Outlook 2024” delivers detailed overview of the global wireless bluetooth headset market in terms of market segmentation by product type, by distribution channel, by price range and by region.
Further, for the in-depth analysis, the report encompasses the industry growth drivers, restraints, supply and demand risk, market attractiveness, BPS analysis and Porter’s five force model.

Request Table of Contents Here: https://www.researchnester.com/toc-request/1/rep-id-387

This report also provides the existing competitive scenario of some of the key players of the global wireless bluetooth headset market which includes company profiling of Apple Inc., Phillips Electronics Company, Samsung, LG Corp., Sony Corp., Bose Corp., Beats Electronics, Jawbone Company, Plantronics and Motorola Inc. The profiling enfolds key information of the companies which encompasses business overview, products and services, key financials and recent news and developments. On the whole, the report depicts detailed overview of the global wireless bluetooth headset market that will help industry consultants, equipment manufacturers, existing players searching for expansion opportunities, new players searching possibilities and other stakeholders to align their market centric strategies according to the ongoing and expected trends in the future.

About Research Nester

Research Nester is a leading service provider for strategic market research and consulting. We aim to provide unbiased, unparalleled market insights and industry analysis to help industries, conglomerates and executives to take wise decisions for their future marketing strategy, expansion and investment etc. We believe every business can expand to its new horizon, provided a right guidance at a right time is available through strategic minds. Our out of box thinking helps our clients to take wise decision so as to avoid future uncertainties.

For more info Ask The Analyst: https://www.researchnester.com/ask-the-analyst/rep-id-387
Contact for more Info:
Ajay Daniel
Email: ajay.daniel@researchnester.com
U.S. +1 646 586 9123
U.K. +44 203 608 5919

Ajay Daniel
Research Nester
+1 646 586 9123
email us here

Breast Cancer walk aims to bring awareness to African American community

Sista Strut in Memphis (Source: WMCTV)Sista Strut in Memphis (Source: WMCTV)

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) – One event coming to Louisville hopes to encourage residents to walk for a good cause. 

Sista Strut is a breast cancer walk who’s goal is to heighten awareness about the issues of breast cancer in women of color, as well as provide information on community resources.

Studies show that African American women are more likely to get breast cancer at a younger age and have a higher breast cancer death rate than of white women of the same age.

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Sista Strut recognizes the strength of survivors, their family and friends, heightens awareness, promotes early detection and the search for a cure. 

“This is a real issue,” iHeartMEDIA Communications Director Shannon Paddymo said.  “Generally, we see in the African American community that mothers grandmothers are taking care of others in the family they don’t always take care of themselves. We see that they are diagnosed later in life, later within their stages, or not diagnosed at all. That’s why we want to bring awareness specifically in the Shawnee Park area in hopes we get the African American community behind us and get this going.

The 3K walk takes place October 21, 2017, at 8:00 a.m. at Shawnee Park.

For more information about the event, click here.

Copyright 2017 WAVE 3 News. All Rights Reserved.

Bannon goes to war on GOP establishment

Former state Sen. Kelli Ward concedes to Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., during her primary election night party in Scottsdale, Ariz.  (David Kadlubowski/The Arizona Republic via AP)/The Arizona Republic via AP)

President Donald Trump’s former chief strategist Steve Bannon has declared war on the Republican establishment, and now he’s amassing his troops. They include a convicted felon, a perennial candidate linked to an environmental conspiracy theory, and a Southern lawmaker known for provocative ethnic and racial comments.

Bannon is promoting challengers to GOP incumbents and the party’s preferred candidates in next year’s midterm elections. It’s an insurgency that could imperil Republican majorities in the House and Senate.

The emerging Bannon class of rabble-rousers share limited ideological ties but have a common intent to upend Washington and knock out Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., standard-bearer of the establishment.

It’s a crop of candidates that unnerves a GOP that lost seats — and a shot at the Senate majority — in 2010 and 2012 with political novices and controversial nominees and fears a stinging repeat in 2018.

“The main thing that binds them together is a rejection of the Republican Party establishment, a rejection of the political elites, the financial elites and the media elites,” said Andy Surabian, a former Bannon aide and senior adviser to the pro-Trump PAC Great America Alliance.

Bannon helped elevate twice-suspended Judge Roy Moore, who won an Alabama runoff over McConnell’s pick, Sen. Luther Strange. Moore was removed from office for refusing to remove a Ten Commandments monument from Alabama’s judicial building and then suspended for insisting probate judges refuse same-sex couples marriage licenses. He faces Democrat Doug Jones in a December election where polls show a single-digit lead for the Republican, a remarkable development in Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ heavily GOP state.

“We don’t have leadership. We have followership,” Moore said Friday at the Values Voter Summit where he argued for scrapping the health care law with no replacement.

In West Virginia, the grassroots conservative group Tea Party Express endorsed Patrick Morrissey, also a Great America Alliance choice, over establishment favorite Rep. Evan Jenkins in a competitive race to unseat Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin.

Senate Republicans had been upbeat about adding to their 52-48 majority, especially with Democrats defending more seats in 2018, including 10 in states Trump won in last year’s presidential election. But the Bannon challenge could cost them, leaving incumbents on the losing end in primaries or GOP candidates roughed up for the general election.

Consider Mississippi, where state Sen. Chris McDaniel lost to veteran Sen. Thad Cochran in 2014, but is weighing a bid next year against Roger Wicker, the state’s other senator in the national legislature.

McDaniel misdefined “mamacita,” the Spanish word for mommy as “hot mama,” and said he would withhold his tax payments if the government paid reparations for slavery. He also was forced to denounce a supporter who photographed and posted an image of Cochran’s bed-ridden wife.

He argued in court that his 2014 loss was due in part to African Americans fraudulently voting in the primary. He’s back again and speaking in Bannon terms.

“They will do anything, they will say anything, to just maintain a hold on power,” McDaniel said in an Associated Press interview about McConnell and his allies.

He’s already envisioning the theme of a challenge against Wicker.

“On one side, a liberty-minded, constitutional conservative. On the other side, Wicker and McConnell,” he said.

In Arizona, former state Sen. Kelli Ward, who is challenging Trump antagonist Sen. Jeff Flake, remains known for entertaining the debunked theory that jet aircraft are used to intentionally affect the weather or poison people.

In 2015, she gave conflicting answers about her beliefs after holding a public hearing she said was to answer constituents’ questions. But John McCain used it to marginalize her in his winning GOP Senate primary against her, and McConnell reprised it in August in a web ad which referred to her as “chemtrail Kelli.”

Former New York Rep. Michael Grimm, who spent eight months in prison for federal tax evasion, is challenging two-term Rep. Dan Donovan — with the encouragement of Bannon.

In announcing his candidacy, Grimm was apologetic for his conviction. Still out there are viral videos of him famously telling a television reporter during an on-camera interview at the U.S. Capitol after a question he didn’t like: “You ever do that to me again, I’ll throw you off this (expletive) balcony.”

House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., is sticking with the incumbent: “I support Dan Donovan, plain and simple,” Ryan said this week.

But he stopped short of suggesting Bannon stand down. “It’s a free country,” he said.

In Nevada, Bannon is encouraging Republican Danny Tarkanian in his challenge to GOP Sen. Dean Heller. Tarkanian, son of famed basketball coach Jerry Tarkanian, is zero-for-five in state and federal elections.

These outsiders share strong opposition to increasing the nation’s debt even if it means an economy-rattling default and unsparing criticism of congressional Republicans, especially McConnell, for failing to dismantle the Obama-era health care law, an unfulfilled seven-year-old promise.

In Wyoming, Erik Prince, founder of security contractor Blackwater, is considering a Republican primary challenge to Sen. John Barrasso, a senior member of the Senate GOP leadership team. Bannon has urged Prince, brother of Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, to run.

Bannon has given at least one Senate incumbent — Texas Sen. Ted Cruz — a pass, but others are in his cross-hairs.

“Nobody’s safe. We’re coming after all of them,” Bannon said during a Fox News interview Wednesday. “And we’re going to win.”
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