My Poverty and Politics

Why I support Brand New Congress

My siblings and I, many years ago. We grew up bearing witness to our mom's fear of the edge, which we understand is closer than many realize.

I support Brand New Congress, an American organization “running 400+ candidates in a single campaign to rebuild our country.” I support their platform, which represents an excellent path to getting more people fed, sheltered, and safe.

Brand New Congress is a 501(c)(4) nonprofit. According to the IRS, this means it “must not be organized for profit and must be operated exclusively to promote social welfare.” It may engage in some political activity, which activity is critical for its purpose.

Unfortunately, 501(c)(4) nonprofits are not obligated to disclose their donors, who may anonymously donate enormous sums. This avenue for “dark money” enables wealthy individuals and corporations to indirectly bypass campaign spending limits.

My siblings and I endured much hardship in childhood. Many still endure it

Earlier this week, I tweeted my support for Brand New Congress. By response to my tweets, I learned that some people adamantly oppose any organization operating as a 501(c)(4). For such people, the fact that Brand New Congress could accept dark money outweighs any good it could achieve.

While I understand this perspective, I don’t share it. Rather than tapping out an essay explaining why, I wanted to share this with my own spoken voice, gestures, and expressions. I wanted to show you rather than tell you.

I support Brand New Congress and a handful of other 501(c)(4)s despite the fact that they’re legally permitted to accept dark money. Please watch the video below to hear how I reach this conclusion. If you’re more interested in my priorities than how I began ordering them, you might want to begin watching at 5:42.

Shortest form: I grew up enduring relentless poverty and predation. Though I’m doing well now, my childhood experiences will forever guide my personal and political priorities. I’m not ashamed of this, and it’s not subject to negotiation.

Written by Deborah Bryan

Deborah Bryan grew up poor and afraid. She has a pretty good life now, but can't rest easy until everyone, everywhere, is fed, sheltered, and free from harm.

Deborah is a Guest Contributor to Progressive Army.

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My Poverty and Politics