Samuels defied the pundits by trailing only 2.1% in ’22
MINNEAPOLIS, Nov. 13, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — Yesterday, Don Samuels officially declared his candidacy for the 2024 Democratic primary in Minnesota’s Fifth Congressional District. The race is a rematch of the 2022 campaign, where Samuels came within 2 percentage points of defeating the incumbent, Rep. Ilhan Omar.
“Our neighbors deserve a leader who will represent our values in Washington, D.C., working with the Biden administration and other democratic colleagues to strengthen democracy, promote peace around the globe, and create a future of opportunity in America,” said Samuels. “At a time where democratic institutions are under attack both at home and abroad, I believe there’s an exhausted majority of my neighbors looking for leaders who seek to strengthen our civic foundations using government to make a difference, not to just cynically make a point. That’s what I’ve done throughout my life, and that’s what I’ll do if I’m elected.”
Samuels believes in an affirmative vision of progress for our country where each individual can reach their full potential. He supports funding improved community safety systems, investing in strategies that target the achievement gap, and building infrastructure that will make society more climate resilient. Yet, he acknowledges that much of the interest in the race was not generated by his support for traditional Democratic positions, but instead by the record of his opponent. Omar has offended many constituencies and undermined the Biden administration throughout her service in office.
“Locally, my opponent was a strident supporter of the defund the police movement, even rebuking President Barack Obama when he referred to it as a ‘snappy slogan’ that would make reform more difficult,” said Samuels. “Nationally, she also voted against President Biden’s signature infrastructure legislation,” he added.
“Internationally, she voted against aid for Ukraine. She voted against sanctions on Russia and previously Turkey, saying that she opposes all sanctions against any nation ‘friend or foe.’ Yet, she supports them against Israel,” said Samuels. “In addition, she decried foreign influence spending in her infamous ‘benjamins’ quote, yet she takes trips paid for by Pakistan and Qatar, the latter to rub elbows with celebrities at a World Cup match in a stadium built by slave labor. She has even gone so far as boycotting speeches to Congress by leaders from India and Israel because of what she says were human rights objections,” Samuels continued.
Married to Sondra, a non-profit leader, Samuels is a former toy designer and longtime community leader. Together, they moved to north Minneapolis in the 1990s, where they raised their four children. When a bullet shattered their nursery window, they immediately began organizing their neighbors to secure additional public safety resources to combat the rampant gun violence devastating the neighborhood. Not long after their advocacy began, Samuels’ neighbors elected him to the Minneapolis City Council and later to the school board, where his focus ranged from public safety to addressing the underlying causes of crime, including inadequate education and job opportunities.
The campaign’s launch video is available for viewing at www.donsamuels.com.
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SOURCE Neighbors for Samuels