Local And National Endorsements Praise Tristan Rader For City Council
Local groups, national organizations and regular people alike are endorsing Tristan Rader’s candidacy for Lakewood City Council At-large.
AFSCME Council 8 became one of Rader’s first official endorsements, in July. AFSCME represents nonprofit and public employees, including correctional officers, school employees and health care workers.
Rader has emphasized the importance of high-quality public services, and says the endorsement by AFSCME is a welcome vote of confidence. “Instead of privatizing important services with poor accountability, we need to have proven, union professionals doing work we can count on,” he says. “AFSCME represents people who keep our communities running, and I’m honored by their support.”
Two local activist groups have also declared their confidence in Rader. All Breeds Lakewood endorsed Rader’s candidacy, following his early statement of opposition to the city’s breed-specific legislation, which bans pit bull type dogs. Since then, many have embraced the group’s “I’m with Charlie” sign campaign, in support of a local dog previously approved by the city but now threatened with banishment.
“Some dogs are a safety threat, but we won’t detect them through head shape or expensive DNA tests,” says Rader. “Local government has more important ways to spend time than hearings on whether a dog is a pit bull or not. I’m entirely in favor of replacing breed-specific legislation with an ordinance like Cleveland’s, which focuses on real problems of dangerous behavior and irresponsible owners.”
Rader also enjoys the endorsement of the Cuyahoga County Progressive Caucus (CCPC), which is headquartered in Lakewood. Since he helped found the group in 2016, along with other members of Bernie Sanders’s local campaign, Rader has stepped down from his role as CCPC operations director. The group has remained a focus for greater Cleveland activism, however, and recently passed 3,000 members.
The endorsement of Lakewood CCPC members, perhaps unsurprising in itself, was recently seconded by the group’s national counterpart. Our Revolution carries on the work of broad political change which Senator Bernie Sanders inspired, and encourages activists to effect change at every level of government. In August the group named Tristan Rader as one of its first two endorsements in Northeast Ohio.
As one of the first to join the Sanders campaign, which Lakewood eventually voted for by a substantial margin, Rader welcomed the endorsement warmly. “To be endorsed now by [Bernie Sanders’s] successor organization, Our Revolution, just means the world to me,” he said.
Nonetheless, Rader says that the endorsement of the Lakewood community is his ongoing priority. He takes pride in comments of Lakewood residents, like Stanley D. Austin who wrote online “I'm voting for Tristan because he has obviously thought through and studied the issues.”
“I will be working for Lakewood’s ‘endorsement’ every day, and won’t stop if I’m elected,” says Rader. “We have already held four town halls throughout the city, and the community’s willingness to show up and share their views with me remains just as important as a formal group’s endorsement. No one’s support should be taken for granted.”
Matt Kuhns is a freelance graphic designer, and occasional author.