Progressive Democrat Wenona Baldenegro May Be First Navaho Woman in Congress

Wenona Baldenegro Addresses PDA Conference

by Randy Shannon

The Progressive Democrats of America 2012 leadership retreat at Winslow, Arizona on April 25 gave Wenona Baldenegro a standing ovation. She welcomed PDA back to Arizona. Her speech was a moving account of the struggle of her single parent household to survive on the reservation and her determination to educate herself and work to uplift the poor and working class people of her district. As a candidate for Congress she pledged to fight for jobs, national healthcare, and a tax system in which the wealthy pay their fair share. The article below on her candidacy is from Huffington Post. Baldenegro is endorsed by PDA and the USW among others.

Democratic Shift: Arizona Turns to New Leadership in Historic Congressional Campaign

With a 9-point Democratic voter edge in the newly redrawn District 1, an extraordinary alliance of resurgent Arizona Democratic Party leaders and rural, Latino, Native American and environmental groups has placed Navajo attorney Wenona Benally Baldenegro’s historic Congressional campaign into the national spotlight as a bellwether in the state’s new politics.

Since incumbent U.S. Rep. Paul Gosar’s (R-AZ) decision to run in neighboring District 4 last month, bipartisan support for the Harvard-trained public interest advocate’s bid to become the first Native American woman in Congress has surged across the vast rural district, which includes Flagstaff and 10 Native American tribes, historic labor towns and an estimated 40 percent Native/Latino electorate. The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has placed District 1 in its Red-to-Blue program.

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