Bernie Sanders And Top Progressive Leaders Cheer Larry Krasner Win In Philadelphia DA Primary

Krasner’s primary victory is part of a trend embracing reform-minded district attorneys.


Top progressive leaders are hailing Democratic candidate Larry Krasner’s Tuesday night victory in the Philadelphia primary for district attorney. The race drew national interest as part of a growing trend of reform-minded candidates overtaking tough-on-crime prosecutors in what had historically been safe seats. 

Though Krasner is a heavy favorite come November, the Democratic National Committee plans to watch the general election race closely and help the Pennsylvania Democratic Party as needed, highlighting the contrast between Krasner and Republican opponent Beth Grossman.

On Wednesday, Independent Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders congratulated Krasner and wished him luck in the general election. 

“At a time when Attorney General [Jeff] Sessions is pushing the Department of Justice to restart the failed ‘War on Drugs,’ it is refreshing to see voters choose a prosecutor who wants to treat addiction as an illness, not a crime, and move to end mass incarceration,” Sanders said. “Krasner’s primary victory is an important step forward in the fight to reform a very broken criminal justice system.”

Democratic National Committee Chair Tom Perez, a former civil rights attorney, said in a statement there was “no better person” to lead Philadelphia’s DA office.

“[Larry Krasner will] fight for a fair and smart criminal justice system that keeps Philadelphia’s communities safe, push for accountable policing, and oppose the Trump administration’s attacks on Philadelphia’s immigrant communities,” Perez said in a statement. 

Krasner earned about 38 percent of the vote in the seven-candidate primary. Joe Khan, the closest challenger, earned just over 20 percent of the vote. 

... Progressive advocates and reformers from across the country, including the Democratic Socialists of America, veterans of the Bernie Sanders presidential campaign and the Black Lives Matter movement, flocked to Krasner’s campaign and viewed it as an opportunity to notch a symbolically important win against the hard-line criminal justice agenda of President Donald Trump and Attorney General Jeff Sessions.