The Ibis Group Institute partners with the Equality PAC of the LGBTQ+ U.S. Congressional Caucus in interviewing, vetting, selecting, and recommending specific races and candidates on which Ibis will support. In the coming months, Ibis will have a finalized list with additional candidates and campaigns Ibis will support (although it will be fluid and adaptable over time).
The first three candidates are:
Since 2019, Julie has served in the Texas House after defeating the author of the Texas “Bathroom Bill” by double digits. As a legislator, she has earned a reputation for being a staunch defender of those who have been kicked around and pushed aside. During the last session, she helped defeat 76 of 77 anti-LGBTQ bills. She authored the historic Live Well Texas bill, which would have expanded Medicaid in Texas, gaining bipartisan support from nine Republican Co-Sponsors, and as Vice-Chair of the Women’s Health Caucus fights on the front lines for reproductive rights.
Julie has passed bills to ensure that life-saving drugs for Texans are not held up by prior-authorization requirements. She protected victims of sexual assault by demanding transparency about repeat offenders from state boards. She ensured that survivors of Dallas first responders who die in the line of duty have full access to benefits. Julie also helped maintain funding for Parkland Health System.
As a Texas educated attorney, she has defended workers’ rights, stood up for the mentally disabled, and helped students who were taken advantage of by for-profit colleges. Julie lives in Farmers Branch with her wife, Susan Moster, a practicing Gastroenterologist in Fort Worth. They have two sons, Nicholas and Ben.
Why Ibis is proud to support Julie Johnson
Julie is an outstanding LGBTQ+ legislator whose accomplishments, tenacity, and vision are desperately needed to help restore order to the broken U.S. House of Representatives. Once elected to Congress, she will fight to reinstate reproductive rights for all women, strengthen gun safety laws, reduce the cost of prescription drugs, protect the Affordable Care Act and stop the extremist MAGA agenda that’s pushing hate and divisiveness. Ibis has chosen to support Julie in her primary race because she is faced with two Democratic opponents who are anti-LGBTQ+ (as unbelievable as that may be), and Ibis will continue to support Julie in her general election as well.
Learn more about Julie Johnson for Congress.
Eddy has served as a member of the Gresham City Council since 2018, working to create multi-generational and affordable housing, preserve green spaces, implement innovative public safety solutions and advocate for underrepresented constituents. As the son of his hardworking and community-minded immigrant mother, Eddy got involved from an early age. As a University of Oregon student, he worked to establish a housing code for the City of Eugene and helped coordinate a boycott to support living wages for farmworkers. His first job was with the United States Student association where he fought for the rights of DREAMers. He also worked to restore voting rights in Florida and joined Stacey Abrams in her successful effort to flip Georgia blue.
Now Eddy is looking to take the experience gained as a community activist and city leader to Washington D.C. where he will represent his Oregon constituents. He will work within Congress to reform our broken immigration system, defend a woman’s right to choose, strengthen public education, support unions and workers in winning better wages and benefits, tackle climate change and work to turn back the recent wave of anti-LGBTQ+ legislation that is sweeping across the nation. Eddy and his husband and partner of 21 years, Hugh Harris, live in east Multnomah County in the city of Gresham.
Why Ibis is proud to support Eddy Morales
Eddy will be an outstanding member of Congress bringing to the role the heart of a community organizer and the skill and effectiveness of an experienced government leader. He knows how to get the job done. With Republicans playing political football with issues surrounding immigration and border safety, it’s more important than ever that we have reasoned and experience-based solutions to develop fair and effective immigration policies. As founder of East County Rising, an organization that aims to promote better representation in government for east Multnomah County, we also feel Eddy is uniquely qualified to serve as representative for Oregon’s 3rd Congressional District. On a more personal note, Eddy and his witnessed first-hand the devastating effects of gun violence and the Opioid Epidemic of on both his family and the Gresham community. He will work tirelessly to help address those issues while in Congress.
Learn more about Eddy Morales for Congress.
A community leader turned Maryland state delegate, Joe is now running to represent Maryland's 6th Congressional district in the U.S. House of Representatives. As a member of the Maryland House of Delegates, Joe has a record of partnering with colleagues to get big things done. This includes writing and passing bipartisan legislation to make historic investments in mental health, combat the rise in hate crimes, and address the exploding fentanyl crisis. As a community leader, he was instrumental in fighting to increase education funding for Maryland students and founded Learn It Together, a nationwide education nonprofit to provide free tutoring for children of essential workers. He worked with Interfaith Works to expand their anti-poverty advocacy efforts and became an active community volunteer with the Manna Food Center, the Up2UsFoundation, and the Maryland Responds Network.
Joe was born in Uruguay and moved to Maryland as a toddler. His great grandparents fled Europe on the eve of the Holocaust. His family moved to the U.S. in 2000 after having lived under a repressive military dictatorship in Uruguay. He was a volunteer on Barack Obama's 2012 presidential campaign, interned with both Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer, and served on the national advance team for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign and for Cory Booker’s 2020 presidential campaign.
Why Ibis is proud to support Joe Vogel
Joe may be young, but what he has been able to accomplish as a community volunteer and state delegate is nothing short of incredible. Like many of us, Joe is frustrated by the division in politics today. He is dedicated to building a multi-generational campaign designed to fight against the division, toxicity and hatred in our politics. Joe will also make history as Maryland’s first openly LGBTQ+, first Latino and first Gen Z member of Congress. He is also Jewish. He intends to bring his collaborative spirit and get-it-done attitude to Congress, focusing on legislation to strengthen our social safety net, modernize our infrastructure, protect reproductive rights, enhance gun safety and address the existential threat resulting from climate change.
Learn more about Joe Vogel for Congress.
Ibis will initially focus on Congressional elections for the 2024 election cycle (with a special focus on the U.S. House of Representatives).
Ibis will limit its work to the support of Democratic candidates who identify as LGBTQ+.
Ibis will initially work with a limited number of candidates and campaigns.
Ibis will only work with candidates and campaigns that have been carefully selected and meet the following criteria:
◊ The race and the candidate have been vetted and recommended by the Equality PAC of the LGBTQ+ U.S. Congressional Caucus as: First, an important and critical race that can be won for the Democrats, and second, a candidate and campaign team that will seriously benefit from and are open to working with Ibis’s approach.
◊ The candidate and their campaign staff embrace the Ibis vision and principles, and they want to work with Ibis on a broad scope, appreciating the full value Ibis offers. The candidate and their campaign staff have the capacity to understand the role of Ibis as an important strategic partner and consultative support arm of their campaign.
◊ The candidate and their campaign staff are not requesting Ibis on a project basis, as Ibis is strategic, and the up-front work in understanding the market and developing strategy and the blueprint for campaign implementation is not appropriate for tactical project work.
◊ The candidate can demonstrate that they have the capacity to win in the general election on the margin, albeit requiring support and hard work. Races in which the Democratic candidate has little or no chance to win because of the fundamental composition of the district or based on other specific issues to the race are not ones which Ibis would pursue. Ibis focuses on those races in which Ibis can make an incremental difference, and that difference can result in a win for the Democrats.
◊ Conversely, the candidate is not in a race that is a “slam-dunk,” in which there is no significant challenger, and the candidate has little or no chance to lose. Again, Ibis focuses on those races in which Ibis can make an incremental/marginal difference, and that difference can result in gaining or retaining a Democratic seat for the LGBTQ+ candidate in the House or Senate.
Ibis will work closely with the Equality PAC of the U.S. LGBTQ+ Congressional Caucus who will act as the source for vetting selecting, and recommending races and candidates. Ibis will rely on the Equality PAC of the LGBTQ+ U.S. Congressional Caucus to determine the race and candidate list. In addition, the Equality PAC of the U.S. LGBTQ+ Congressional Caucus will be an ongoing partner in Ibis work. This partnership will be a core foundation for Ibis. The Equality PAC/Caucus will also provide suggestions for additional members of the Ibis Teams.
Ibis will not engage in fundraising for candidates or their campaigns, either as a PAC (Ibis is not and will not be a PAC), bundler, or source for fundraising activities (e.g. events, lists, referrals, etc.). Ibis will help candidates and their campaigns with developing fundraising strategies, but will not engage in fundraising. Candidates and campaigns whose primary objective is to find fundraising sources will need to look elsewhere, as this is not an area in which Ibis provides support.
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