Double trouble: Jayapal’s sister launches her own House bid

The sister of ‘Squad’ member Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.) is looking to join her in Congress, announcing her bid to represent Oregon’s 3rd Congressional District.

Susheela Jayapal announced she is stepping down as Multnomah County Commissioner to run for the seat being vacated by Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.) who revealed this week that after decades in Congress, he will not seek reelection in 2024. Jayapal checked off all the boxes in her announcement, saying she is suited for the job because of her experience “as an immigrant, a person of color, a woman, a mom.”

Her sister, the Washington state Democrat and chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, celebrated the news on X, making a pitch for donations for her “incredible sister.”

“It has been an absolute honor and privilege to serve these past five years,’’ Jayapal, 61, said in a statement that Oregon County shared in a news release.“We have worked together through a series of unprecedented crises with a shared mission of moving Multnomah County in a more resilient and equitable direction.”

“We’re at a pivotal point in our country and in our district. With the Republican majority beholden to extremist ideologues attacking our democracy and our rights in ways we’ve never seen before, it’s more important than ever that we have an unwavering progressive voice in Congress to stand up for our values and bring us together to create the thriving, equitable community we need,” Jayapal said in a statement on Wednesday.

“I’m ready to continue that work, as someone with a proven record of accomplishments, passion for service, and the ability to get things done,” she added. “And I’ll do it in partnership with our community. I’ll bring my experience as an immigrant, a person of color, a woman, a mom — experience of what it’s like to navigate systems that weren’t created for everyone, and in fact, often were created to exclude so many.”

Stepping in as interim commissioner as Jayapal vacates the spot is Jesse Beason, the president and chief executive officer of the Northwest Health Foundation.

Oregon Public Broadcasting rolled out Jayapal’s accomplishments:

As a commissioner, Jayapal has pushed for immigration refugee services, racial justice programs, homelessness prevention policies and eviction defense support. In the past year, she’s focused on updating the county’s contracting practices with nonprofits to ensure that staff are fairly compensated. The county has struggled to swiftly distribute tax dollars meant for homeless prevention programs due to nonprofit staffing issues. Most recently, Jayapal has called on the city of Portland to ban the use of leaded diesel at the city-run Portland International Raceway.

Jayapal said she’s especially proud of her work at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, when she pushed the state to provide equitable access to testing and vaccines in Multnomah County. Another top accomplishment: finalizing a contract with an online database company that helps property owners list vacant apartments, making them easier for homeless service providers to find.


Her sister, the far-left Democrat “Squad” member shared another post on X that she signed, “A very proud little sister.”

“My incredible sister @SusheelaJayapal just launched her campaign for Congress!,’’ she wrote, sharing a photo of the sisters when they were children. “I couldn’t be more excited to share this news (and this cute photo of us from back in the day) with you!”

Social media users reacted to the news that there could soon potentially be two Jayapals serving in Congress.


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Frieda Powers


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