Zach Shrewsbury Fighting the Corporate Democratic War Party from Within

We wanted to know from Zach Shrewsbury why he decided to run for U.S. Senate from West Virginia as a Democrat given how unpopular the party is – both because it’s a party dominated by corporate interests and because of its pro-war stance – both in Ukraine and Israel.

Zach Shrewsbury

So we rang him up and asked him – why didn’t he just run as an independent as opposed to being tarred with the tanking reputation of Joe Biden and the Dems?

Running as an independent “was a consideration at the very beginning,” Shrewsbury told Morgan County USA in an interview this week.

“I looked at all of my options,” he said. “The Democrat party is screwed up hard with their stance on Gaza. They should acknowledge that what’s happening in Gaza is a genocide. And we should be pro-ceasefire. But sadly, they don’t want to listen to their constituents. They want to instead listen to their corporate interests. And that does matter to West Virginia.”

“But I’m not toeing the party line here. The party is wrong. Try to get that through the heads of DC consultants or your old-school party strategists. It’s like talking to a wall.”

“But they will have to learn through these elections that the same old strategy doesn’t work. You can’t sell wars to the American people. The Democratic Party is trying to sell what’s happening in Gaza the way they went along with the Iraq war back in the day. But it can’t happen.” [Editor’s note: A majority of Senate Democrats — 29 to 21 — voted for the Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq Resolution of 2002.]

Shrewsbury is running as a labor candidate. His number one issue is labor protections, or as he puts it on his web page – “Zach is committed to fighting for strong labor protections. He believes that every worker deserves a living wage, safe working conditions, and the right to unionize.”

His second issue is universal healthcare. He would transition away from Obamacare “to a universal healthcare system guaranteeing quality healthcare for all regardless of their ability to pay.”

Does that mean Medicare for All single payer national health insurance like Bernie Sanders is proposing? 

Or something more like the UK national health system – where the government owns the hospitals and pays the doctors directly?

“I’m more for the UK equivalent,” he says.

Shrewsbury is a former Marine. He grew up in a working class Republican family. He graduated from James Monroe High School in Monroe County in southern West Virginia.

“I grew up in a working class family,” he says. “My dad was in sales, my mom stayed at home. I grew up on a farm.”

After high school, he realized he couldn’t afford college so he joined the Marines. He was assigned to an anti-terrorism security team.

It was in the Marines where he became political. 

“In the Marines, I had full access to the internet, where in West Virginia we didn’t have full broadband,” he says.

“When I read about Occupy Wall Street, it just opened my eyes to wealth inequality in America. I didn’t like seeing so much inequality. So I just kept learning and learning and learning. So it was 2011 when I became very political.”

Shrewsbury’s race is already garnering national and international attention.

The pundit class is saying that he doesn’t stand a chance in a state that Donald Trump won by almost 40 points in 2020.

But Shrewsbury says he’s different from the corporate war Democrats who have been trounced in West Virginia in the past.

And as we were about to go to press, news broke of a U.S. Senate candidate with a working class, ex-military, pro-labor background very similar to that of Zach Shrewsbury.

His name is Dan Osborn. Osborn is running for U.S. Senate from Nebraska as an independent. No Democrat has entered the race.

And the headline in Newsweek was – Shock Poll Gives Challenger Lead in State Donald Trump Won by 19 Points.

“An independent Senate candidate in Nebraska, a state former President Donald Trump won by 19 points in 2020, is polling ahead of the state’s Republican incumbent, according to a new poll,” Newsweek reported.

“Dan Osborn, a military veteran, is ahead of Senator Deb Fischer, who has represented the state since 2012, 40 percent to 38 percent, the Change Research poll shows. The Senate election in Nebraska will be held on November 5, 2024, alongside the presidential election.”

“Fifty-three percent of poll respondents were Republican, 33 percent Democrat and 14 percent independent, while 53 percent said they voted for Trump in 2020 and 35 percent for President Joe Biden,” the magazine reported.

Osborn told Steve Early of Labor Notes that he hopes to avoid an unhelpful association with the national Democratic Party in a state which chose Donald Trump over Joe Biden by 19 points in 2020.

Shrewsbury will be holding meet and greet events in Berkeley Springs, West Virginia. December 19, 20 and 21 – at Roy’s, the Star Theater and the Fairfax Coffee Shop.

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