Today longtime civil rights leader, Democratic Party statesman and community advocate Rev. Jesse Jackson announced his endorsement of Speaker Emeritus Karen Bass (D-Los Angeles) for Congress. At the Memorial Day announcement, the leaders announced new steps to help protect Californians facing home foreclosures.
"Our goal is to bring banks and homeowners to the negotiating table to find alternatives to the home foreclosures that have crippled our community," said Bass. "Reverend Jesse Jackson is a partner who understands that community is the heart of the economy and it is my hope that our work on this effort will keep families in their homes."
Assembly Bill 1639, which is going to be voted on in the Assembly later this week, would provide state-appointed monitors to ensure borrowers have a chance to work with their lenders on a plan to prevent home foreclosures. Such monitors are crucial to the Obama Administration's Affordable Modification Program.
Jackson said he supports the program and is leading an advocacy effort at the highest levels of government to help working people who have been victimized by Wall Street.
Jackson also highlighted Bass's commitment to empowering communities and protecting the most vulnerable Californians.
"Karen Bass has demonstrated political vision, leadership and legislative acumen as Speaker of the California State Assembly and her years in public office," said Jackson. "She is a true grassroots community leader. When it comes to education, health care, fighting home foreclosures and for bank reform, she can be counted on to represent our communities and people. I proudly endorse her candidacy for the U.S. Congress, and look forward to her leadership in the nation's capitol."
Bass, who stressed the influence Rev. Jackson's efforts have had on her career, said, "When Reverend Jackson speaks he speaks with authority; with experience; and with compassion. That is why his endorsement of my candidacy is such a deep honor," said Bass. "His efforts to provide a voice for the community are the same efforts I undertook in founding the Coalition, which has become a strong force empowering the people of our community."
Bass said that is the path she pledged to take in Washington as well, "striving every day to both raise my voice for the people of this District and also to try and lower some of the rhetoric that is dividing this country."
As Speaker, Bass was able to deliver bipartisan results such as protecting 600,000 children from losing their health care, restoring the governor's cuts to domestic violence programs and helping Californians remain eligible for continued federal unemployment benefits.
Additionally, Bass has authored legislation to insure continued funding to reopen the Martin Luther King Hospital so that the community can once again have access to emergency medical care.
Bass has also been endorsed by the Honorable Diane Watson, Senator Dianne Feinstein, Congresswoman Maxine Waters, Los Angeles County Supervisor Mark Ridley Thomas, Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, the National Women's Political Caucus, and many other elected officials and organizations including EMILY's list.