Why We’re Supporting Bydlak & Fareed for Congress

Many observers pronounced the GOP dead after the party’s recent convention in Cleveland, which formally nominated Donald Trump for president.

As an institution, the party offers the most unpopular, uninformed, and unstable candidate in modern times. As an ideology, the party puts forward a candidate who shares no coherent belief or value system. Instead, the GOP is merely a vehicle for Trump’s narcissistic endeavor to become the most powerful person on the planet.

The good news is that disenchanted Republicans and those, like us, who are not Republican but still believe in the value of a center-right party fit to govern need only to look down the ballot to find a glimmer of hope for the future.

Republicans Rebekah Johansen Bydlak and Justin Fareed, in Florida’s 1st District and California’s 24th District, are two next generation leaders who are waging winnable campaigns for U.S. Congress.

Rebekah is a leading contender in an August 30th primary against 7 other candidates to replace retiring Rep. Jeff Miller. (The winner of the primary will almost certainly win the general election.) Justin already defeated 7 other candidates in his June “top-two” primary, and advanced to a contentious general election to replace retiring Rep. Lois Capps.

If elected, they would become the youngest members of a governing body that is the oldest and longest-serving in history and help give a voice to a generation largely without one in Washington. (Currently, not a single U.S. Representative is under the age of 30.)

According to the latest Harvard poll of voters 18–29, just 15% say our country is headed in the right direction, and a majority agree that “politics has become too partisan.” Rebekah and Justin reflect these sentiments and have positioned themselves as conservatives who are not afraid of finding common ground to get things done.

In their campaigns, both candidates have strayed away from hot button social topics and have instead prioritized economic issues, including government spending and debt, which was cited as a top concern among millennials in a recent USA Today/Rock the Vote survey. And for good reason.

In its latest budget projection, the Congressional Budget Office warned that we remain on an unsustainable fiscal path as increasing debt threatens slower growth, lower wages, dramatic reductions in productive investments, and significantly higher taxes on future generations.

In fact, projections have worsened despite Congress’ meager efforts at raising upper income tax rates and slowing discretionary spending growth — underscoring the need to address the primary driver of our fiscal imbalance through long-term entitlement reform, which both candidates (unlike both parties) actively acknowledge. The CBO also emphasized that the longer action is delayed, necessary policy changes will only become more severe.

“Runaway spending and debt will take its toll on my generation and those to follow,” writes Rebekah, who previously helped run the non-profit Coalition to Reduce Spending.

Where Rebekah and Justin most diverge from their fellow millennials is on the perceived value of political participation. Nearly half of young Americans believe politics today is no longer able to meet our country’s challenges, and fewer than a third even see running for office as an honorable thing to do.

In his announcement speech, Fareed told his audience: “If you don’t get involved with the government you have, then you deserve the government you get.”

Unless and until strong infrastructure is built to support candidates who can challenge the very core of our dysfunctional two party duopoly (which we’re diligently working on!), we are happy to throw our support behind both Democrats and Republicans who can improve upon the status quo.

This cycle, Rebekah and Justin not only offer hope for the Republican Party by bringing it into the 21st Century, but also hope to their generation by demonstrating how we can shape our own future through the political process. That’s something we can get behind, and hope you can too.

We invite you to join us in supporting Rebekah and Justin by visiting their websites and pitching in a contribution of $5 or more today. As we’ve learned from our own experience, every dollar and every donor can truly make a impact when taking on the political establishment.

Nick Troiano (I) and Jeffrey Carson (L) were 2014 candidates for Congress in Pennsylvania’s 10th District and in Virginia’s 8th District, respectively.