'The Progressive Movement Has to Fight Back': New Ad Campaign Targets Biden and Buttigieg in Iowa and South Carolina

Voters in the early-voting states of Iowa and South Carolina are being blitzed by new digital ads detailing the records and financial ties of South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg and former Vice President Joe Biden.

The ad campaign is part of a push from progressives to point out what they view as disqualifying factors in the two candidates’ campaigns for president.

Organize for Justice, the 501(c)4 with ties to Justice Democrats, is pouring $500,000 into a digital ad campaign in the last weeks before voters in the two states cast their ballots in the Democratic primary.

Buttigieg and Biden have pro-corporate, anti-worker records which should be fully known by voters before they choose their favored nominee, Justice Democrats says.

“Americans need to know about Biden’s and Buttigieg’s records and their relationships with corporate executives and donors.”
—Alexandra Rojas, Justice Democrats

“Americans need to know about Biden’s and Buttigieg’s records and their relationships with corporate executives and donors,” Alexandra Rojas, executive director of Justice Democrats, said in a statement.

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The ads will link to articles where users can read about Buttigieg’s record, including his consulting work at McKinsey, which included work for the Department of Defense in Iraq and Afghanistan and for Blue Cross Blue Shield, where he advised the company on cost-cutting measures.

The mayor’s past stated support for Medicare for All will also be the subject of one ad.

“Mayor Pete Buttigieg used to support Medicare for All. But he flip-flopped soon after the money started flowing,” the digital ad reads, referring to more than $1 million Buttigieg has raised from the for-profit health sector in the 2020 campaign.

Organize for America will also draw attention to pro-industry groups which have worked in Biden’s and Buttigieg’s favor, attacking Medicare for All.

“The progressive movement has to fight back,” said Justice Democrats, against groups like Partnership for America’s Health Care Future, which has supplied lawmakers with industry-written talking points about strengthening the Affordable Care Act instead of fighting for Medicare for All, and One Nation, a super PAC tied to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), which has also attacked the proposal.

Organize for Justice’s digital ads draw attention to Biden’s long record of aligning with Wall Street interests against working people, including his support for slashing Social Security benefits and for a 2005 bill which would make it harder for Americans to file for bankruptcy—a position which Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) attacked at the time as one that would benefit credit card companies while hurting working and low-income families.

In the ad focusing on Social Security, Organize for Justice writes that Biden agrees with Republicans that the benefits “are too generous,” referring to comments the former vice president has made for four decades and as recently as 2014.

The Organize for Justice campaign comes as Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) is ramping up his offensive regarding Biden’s record, pointing to many of the same issues the group will raise in its ads.

The Organize for Justice campaign comes as the Bernie Sanders campaign also ramps up efforts to educate voters about Biden’s record. 

In a video released Tuesday, the Sanders campaign fact-checked their own claims about Biden, including that the former Vice President as a senator led the effort to invade Iraq in 2003 and voted for the NAFTA trade agreement, showing statements Biden has made throughout his career proving Sanders’s statements true.


“We rate all of these claims true,” Sanders’s speechwriter, David Sirota said in the video.

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