Generation Progress is the youth arm of the Center for American Progress Action Fund (CAP Action), the 501(c)(4) advocacy arm of the Center for American Progress, a left-of-center think tank created in 2003 as a left-of-center counter to the conservative Heritage Foundation.
Generation Progress was created in 2005 as a program of CAP Action and was originally called Campus Progress; its name was changed in 2013 to appeal to young people not attending college. It focuses on promoting left-wing youth activism on a number issues such as gun control, income redistribution, and taxpayer funding of college through lobbying, media campaigns, and training programs to mobilize members.
Generation Progress’ campaigns include #Fight4AFuture National Leadership Council (FNLC) to pursue gun control legislation and collaboration with a number of left-wing organizations, including the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights (LCCHR), in order to oppose the confirmation of Trump administration nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court.
Generation Progress has been involved in multiple campaigns with other left-wing organizations to pressure Congress into passing stricter gun control legislation. The youth activist group lobbied Congress on May 7th, 2018 for further restrictions to federal gun laws.
Generation Progress has also worked along with March for our Lives, a gun control group formed by left-wing activists and some survivors of a school shooting in Parkland, Florida. On August 4, 2018, the two groups organized a protest at the National Rifle Association headquarters in Fairfax, Virginia.
In 2013, Generation Progress began the #Fight4AFuture Network, a campaign intended to foster a left-wing national gun control and criminal justice reform movement. The group has focused on mobilizing and training young activists to influence legislatures, including high school students.
Brett Kavanaugh Confirmation
Generation Progress has been active in lobbying the Senate over Supreme Court judicial nominations since 2016, when it pushed for Senate hearings for the Judge Merrick Garland, who had been appointed by then-President Barack Obama to replace Associate Justice Antonin Scalia. Generation Progress disrupted a Federalist Society luncheon attended by U.S. Senator Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) to protest the ultimately successful Senate Republican efforts to defeat the nomination.
Generation Progress also lobbied against the confirmation of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the U.S. Supreme Court. On July 9, 2018, during President Donald Trump’s announcement of the nomination of Kavanaugh to fill the Supreme Court seat vacated by former Justice Anthony Kennedy, Generation Progress protested outside the Supreme Court with pro-abortion signs. At the protest, Neera Tanden, the CEO and president of CAP Action’s associated 501(c)(3) organization Center for American Progress, argued against the nomination of the judge based on her desire to preserve effectively unrestricted abortion access. Generation Progress has labeled Judge Kavanaugh as a “dangerous extremist” by saying he is against Roe v. Wade, against a so-called “assault weapons ban,” and against the Constitutionally suspect Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), an Obama-era administrative agency designed to be unaccountable to Congress and the President. Even before the nomination, Generation Progress —along with Left-of-Center activist groups such as Alliance for Justice (AFJ), People for the American Way (PFAW), and Demand Justice — arranged a protest on Jun 28th outside the Supreme Court.
Since the election of President Donald Trump, Generation Progress has used issues such as government-funded student debt initiatives to engage young activists in a number of left-wing campaigns as part of the self-styled “Resistance.” Providing access to information on how to lobby Congress, engage the media, or even run for public office, Generation Progress actively organizes its members on how to best become part of the opposition to the Trump administration.
Maggie Thompson serves as the executive director of Generation Progress. Thompson is the former campaign manager for Higher Ed Not Debt, a Generation Progress campaign focused on expanding government funding of student loans for higher education.
Anisha Singh serves as the senior organizing director of Generation Progress, where she applies national mobilization strategies to the state level. She previously worked on “anti-bullying projects.”
Amber Gaither serves as the operations coordinator of Generation Progress, working within CAP since 2016.