The son of a steelworker and a hairdresser, both emigrants from Mexico, he grew up watching C-SPAN and became a union leader for the film industry in Los Angeles. Today he’s running for Congress in the suburbs north of Atlanta as a Christian, working-class Independent fed up with both parties.
Alexander Hernandez, 30, is a member of a label-averse generation alternately inspired and appalled by the 2016 election — and a growing number of them are throwing their hats in the ring to run for themselves. On Crowdpac, a millennial leaning crowdfunding site,
The website Crowdpac launched a Kickstarter project for politicians in late 2015 with the goal of helping nontraditional candidates run for office by pooling small donations to provide them with an initial push.
The money supported campaigns ranging from Donald Trump to Chris Rabb, an educator who defied a Democratic political machine in Philadelphia to snatch a state House seat.
Crowdpac expected interest to drop off after the presidential election, but from the women’s marches to congressional town hall meetings, political fervor continues to burn — hence the explosion of new-generation candidates. More than 60 percent of those running for office on Crowdpac are millennials, says spokesman Mason Harrison.
In the wake of a disastrous election for Democrats, a former Hillary Clinton aide and a veteran of progressive issues and political campaigns formed Run for Something, a group designed to rebuild the party by recruiting, vetting and coaching candidates younger than 35. The plan was to target Virginia, which holds local elections this year, but the call went national.
Since Run for Something’s Inauguration Day launch, 7,000 people have inquired about running, says co-founder and executive director Amanda Litman, who initially thought mobilizing 100 candidates would be a stretch. “We just didn’t expect to have to scale up this quickly,” says Litman…