press release:

75 Military Veteran Leaders Sign Memo Calling for Unity to Defeat Trump



January 22nd, 2018

NEW YORK – 75 prominent military veteran leaders and political organizers signed a letter, published today, calling for factions within the Democratic party and the progressive movement to come together to defeat Trump and his Republican enablers in the 2018 and 2020 elections.

According to the letter: “The stakes couldn’t be higher, which is why we’re so dismayed to see a familiar pattern taking hold on the left. Once again, Democrats have locked themselves into an endless reenactment of the 2016 civil war. Meanwhile, a growing popular narrative tells us that Trump’s administrative incompetence, low approval ratings, and the investigation by Robert Mueller somehow spells imminent doom for the regime.”
“By letting ourselves fall into complacency and in-fighting, we are laying the groundwork for eight years of Trump. We must focus instead on building a united front, and putting an end to the circular firing squads that push people out of the political system at the time we need them most.”

The letter was organized by the grassroots progressive veterans organization Common Defense, which was founded in 2016 to defeat Donald Trump. According to the letter, veterans can model the alignment that is needed, because “as veterans, we learned to work together under high-stakes conditions.”

Signers of the letter are a diverse list of leaders involved in Common Defense, who come from across the left-of-center political spectrum, including organizers from both Veterans for Bernie and Veterans for Hillary, members of the national security establishment as well as the peace movement, LGBTQ rights, and the racial justice movement, climate movement, and more. According to the letter, “binary narratives do not serve us, and do not reflect the reality that so many people do not fall neatly into only a single camp.”

According to the letter, a key pillar of bringing together a winning political coalition must be an openness to robust competitive Democratic primary elections. According to the letter, “primaries do not hurt us, they strengthen us. They allow us to sell our ideas to the electorate, and make us more responsive to what resonates with voters. Primaries bring new people into the political system who have previously felt unheard.”

Read the full letter and list of signers here.


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