Governor O’Malley, Senator Begich Announce Launch of The NewDEAL to Recognize State and Local Pro-Growth Progressive Leaders

New Organization Unveils First Group of State & Local Elected Officials

Today, Governor Martin O’Malley of Maryland and U.S. Senator Mark Begich of Alaska announce the launch of the NewDEAL, a new national network committed to elevating pro-growth progressive state and local elected leaders and their innovative ideas from across the country.

Ten rising elected officials from across the country have been selected as the first group of NewDEAL leaders for their work championing ideas ranging from progressive tax reform to fostering small business growth and streamlining government spending.

“Too often in DC, pro-growth and progressive goals are seen as opposed to each other.  But as former mayors, Governor O’Malley and I saw first hand how solutions that were both pro-growth and progressive could help to grow the economy in a way that expands opportunity for everyone.  The NewDEAL is designed to highlight and foster these types of ideas and leaders,” said Senator Begich, Honorary Co-Chair of the NewDEAL.

“Senator Begich and I have joined the NewDEAL, because we believe that we need to look for fresh ideas not just from the top down in Washington DC, but also from the bottom up, where local leaders are developing and testing their ideas out on the ground,” said Governor O’Malley, Honorary Co-Chair of the NewDEAL.

The first ten leaders to be recognized by the NewDEAL hail from a diverse set of regions and hold a variety of local elected positions.  Those ten are:

  • Chad Campbell, House Minority Leader, Phoenix, AZ
  • Jeff Danielson, Senate President Pro Tempore, Cedar Falls, IA
  • Wendy Greuel, City Controller, Los Angeles, CA
  • Tishaura Jones, Assistant House Minority Leader, St. Louis, MO
  • Mark Keam, Delegate, Vienna, VA
  • Fiona Ma, Assembly Speaker pro Tempore, San Francisco, CA
  • Ross Miller, Secretary of State, Nevada
  • Joe Morelle, Assemblyman, Rochester, NY
  • John O’Grady, County Commissioner, Franklin County, OH
  • Bryon Short, Representative, Wilmington, DE

The NewDEAL is committed to helping pro-growth progressive leaders share their innovative ideas on its interactive, multi-media website, www.NewDEALLeaders.org. Each quarter, a new group of leaders will be featured.  The public is encouraged to sign up to nominate state and local elected leaders and stay connected as we highlight more of their pro-growth progressive ideas.

Washington Post: Begich and O’Malley Launch NewDEAL

By Aaron Blake

Alaska Sen. Mark Begich and Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malleyare forming a new non-profit group to highlight young Democratic elected officials with new ideas at the state and local level.

The group, called The NewDEAL (an acronym for Developing Exceptional American Leaders), will officially launch Tuesday and is billed as a “national network committed to highlighting and connecting pro-growth progressive state and local elected leaders from across the country.”

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The 501 (c)(4) will highlight a group of 10 or 15 elected officials at a time and seek to promote their pragmatic ideas using short videos on an interactive website. The group is encouraging supporters to nominate people and elected leaders in their community through the website.

Begich said the main goal is to highlight the ideas, but that the program can also be used as a recruiting tool for the Democrats in search of appealing candidates in future elections.

“People are excited for this, because nobody is doing it,” Begich said. “It’s a combo of great ideas — a think-tank kind of thing — but at the same time highlighting great aspects of future and current leaders. People are looking for those fresh and new faces.”

The idea sprung from a relationship O’Malley and Begich formed when both were mayors — O’Malley in Baltimore and Begich in Anchorage. Begich said it blossomed when he joined the Senate in 2009 and realized how the chamber was stuck in an antiquated way of doing things.

“That told me that there needs to be a long-range (vision),” Begich said. “At the same time, I didn’t see anybody out there reaching out to some of the new talent and folks that are coming up in the private sector, the local government or the state government.”

The first class of 10 includes mostly state legislators, but also a potential 2012 Senate candidate in Nevada Secretary of State Ross Miller. The other nine are: Arizona state Rep.Chad Campbell, Iowa state Senate President Pro Tempore Jeff Danielson, Los Angeles City Controller Wendy Greuel, Missouri Assistant House Minority Leader Tishaura Jones, Virginia state Del. Mark Keam, California state Assemblywoman Fiona Ma, New York state Assemblyman Joe Morelle, Franklin County (Ohio) Commissioner John O’Grady, and Delaware state Rep. Bryon Short.

O’Malley, who also serves as chairman of the Democratic Governors Association, said the group is coming along at a good time. He said it will occupy some territory formerly inhabited by the centrist Democratic Leadership Council, which folded recently, and also that Democrats need to be reminded that, even though they have most of the power in Washington right now, it won’t always be that way.

“Sometimes control of the White House might distract us from bringing up the next generation,” O’Malley said.

The NewDEAL is already up on Twitter and Facebook.

Source: Washington Post, The Fix