Despite being a member of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, Democrat Madeleine Dean (PA-4 D+9) scored a full 100% disagreement in the recent PINO (Progressive In Name Only) report by RootsAction.

By Christopher D. Cook, RootsAction

Representing a Democratic-leaning district in southeastern Pennsylvania, mostly in suburbs of Philadelphia, Dean is the only CPC member who scored a full 100 percent wrong on core progressive issues in our review. Now in her second term, Rep. Dean has already disappointed some of her supporters, including labor activists demanding she take stronger stands on healthcare.

Madeleine Dean

Dean avoided supporting Medicare for All, stating on her reelection campaign website: “Every person deserves to be able to have access to affordable, quality, and comprehensive healthcare. … Madeleine wants to continue working in Congress to support universal healthcare that is economically balanced to fulfill the promise that our government made in 2010.” Reform that is “economically balanced”? It seems Dean ignored extensive research showing that Medicare for All could save lives and up to $450 billion a year.

At a 2019 public forum in Philadelphia for area members of Congress, Dean was booed by Democratic activists when she explained her opposition to Medicare for All. In April 2021, healthcare workers and unions picketed Dean’s district office to protest her inaction on even a temporary expansion of Medicare to cover everyone during the pandemic. David McMahon, a delegate for the Montgomery County Central Labor Council, said: “when it comes to healthcare reform she lets Big Business do all the talking. We couldn’t even get her to meet with us on the Healthcare Emergency Guarantee Act in the middle of a pandemic.”

Meet the PINOs, progressive in name only, Madeleine Dean

Rep. Dean took $77,500 in campaign donations from the insurance industry sector in 2020, and another $40,300 from the pharmaceuticals and health products sector.

Union activists weren’t the only disappointed Dean supporters. Journalist Dave Lindorff wrote a scathing piece on Dean after getting a meager response from her office on a basic civil liberties issue; Dean sits on the House Judiciary Committee.

Dean has failed to support either of the Green New Deal measures from Reps. Ocasio-Cortez and Cori Bush. At the Philadelphia forum in 2019, Dean told the crowd of Democratic activists that while she supports the idea of a Green New Deal, she wouldn’t co-sponsor it. In her reelection campaign, Dean touted more tepid “legislation that transforms our country into a climate-forward and clean energy powerhouse.” (While Dean has joined many progressives in supporting the THRIVE Act, which has some elements of the Green New Deal, she backed it a full month after 44 of her colleagues had cosponsored the bill.)

In foreign policy, Dean signed the March 2021 congressional letter (backed by 70 Republicans and 70 Democrats) aimed at slowing the Biden administration’s efforts to reestablish an Iran nuclear deal—a letter organized by the Israel-can-do-no-wrong lobby, AIPAC. In 2020 and 2021, she voted against amendments to reduce military spending.

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