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Empowering the People: Why I Stand with Summer Lee


How a Trailblazing Leader is Fighting for Everyday Pennsylvanians

Don Reid

By Don Reid

As a seasoned union member of PA Joint Board of Workers United, SEIU for over 18 years, I've weathered the ups and downs of the working class life. Day in and day out, I navigate the streets as a delivery driver for a vending company, hustling to put food on the table for my family.

Amidst the bleak economic landscape that seems to loom larger each day, one beacon of hope shines bright: Congresswoman Summer Lee, a trailblazer who has made history as the first Black woman elected to Congress in Pennsylvania. When I vote for her, I'm not just choosing a candidate; I'm choosing a fighter, a doer, someone who embodies the spirit of working people.

I've had the privilege of engaging with Summer Lee firsthand, on a zoom call organized by my union. Her enthusiasm, her energy—it's infectious. But more than that, she's a woman of action. She doesn't just talk the talk; she walks the walk, rallying folks from all walks of life around common-sense solutions for our state.

Inflation hits hard, especially for a family of six like mine. But thanks to the collective bargaining power of my union, we've managed to secure a significant raise —$2.25 an hour added to our contract as drivers. It may not sound like much to some, but for us, it means the difference between scraping by and putting food on the table without constantly worrying about the bottom line.

Gone are the days when a trip to the grocery store was a routine affair. Now, every purchase is a carefully calculated decision, so that we can make sure that we have enough food to feed our four kids. My wife and I take turns deciding whose car to fill up with gas each week, stretching every dollar as far as it can go. But with overtime opportunities and a health insurance plan that remains affordable thanks to the unwavering stance of our union, we're managing to stay afloat.

Yet, amidst the daily grind, one thing remains paramount: job security. With a family as large as mine, the fear of unemployment is ever-present. That's why I stand firmly behind Summer Lee. She understands the struggles of working-class families like mine because she’s from communities like mine, and she's committed to fighting for policies that ensure our livelihoods are secure. In contrast to Congresswoman Summer Lee's grassroots campaign, her opponent, Bhavini Patel, is backed by PA's wealthiest Republican billionaire, Jeffrey Yass. This sharp contrast prompts us to ask: Whose side is Patel really on, when billionaires like Yass prioritize profits over working families? The answer is crystal clear: Patel serves the wealthy elite, not hardworking Pennsylvanians.

In Congress, Summer Lee’s track record speaks for itself, with tangible results that have brought federal dollars back to our district. In these uncertain times, we need leaders who are unafraid to stand up for what's right, who refuse to back down in the face of adversity. That's why I'm proud to support Summer Lee, and come Election Day, on April 23, I'll be voting with confidence, knowing that she's the champion we need.