Lake County News: Palsson to run for U.S. House of Representatives seat for California’s Fifth District

Originally posted on Lake County News, by Lake County News Reports, on March 25, 2018

Palsson to run for U.S. House of Representatives seat for California’s Fifth District

Nils Palsson. Courtesy photo.

Nils Palsson. Courtesy photo.

NORTHERN CALIFORNIA – Teacher, nonprofit communications director and former Lake County resident Nils Palsson has filed as a candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives in the Fifth Congressional District in the upcoming 2018 midterm election. 

The district includes all of Napa County and parts of Lake, Sonoma, Solano and Contra Costa Counties.

Running as an independent “no party preference” candidate, Palsson, 32, represents a platform of social, racial, environmental and economic justice for all, with an emphasis on getting money out of politics and restoring our democracy. He was also a candidate for this Congressional seat in 2016.

Palsson is challenging ten-term Democratic incumbent Mike Thompson. One of the main factors leading Palsson to declare his candidacy was his discovery that Thompson accepts major political contributions from big banks and some of the worlds largest and most destructive corporations. Thompson’s political donors include military-industrial giants Honeywell and Lockheed Martin, mega-banks JP Morgan Chase and Bank of America, telecom companies Verizon and Comcast, big pharmaceutical and health insurance corporations, fossil fuel companies, and many other large corporate PAC’s and lobbyists.

Palsson accepts no such lobbyist or Super-PAC contributions, building his campaign entirely on small individual donations and grassroots community action.

“Big money has taken over politics,” Palsson wrote in his official candidate statement, which will be mailed home to voters in April. “I am running for this office because we, the people, deserve a voice in government.” 

Palsson has pledged to lead the movement in Congress to impeach President Trump, resist his policies, and support legislation for Medicare for All, affordable housing and education, a living wage, immigration reform, and a strong response to climate change. 

A self-described “Berniecrat” (a progressive political candidate aligned with the presidential campaign of Bernie Sanders), Palsson was elected to be a delegate for Sanders in 2016. 

Palsson, who resided in Lake County from 2010 to 2016, currently lives in Santa Rosa, where he serves as communications director for the sustainability and community resilience nonprofit Transition US, national hub of the global “Transition Towns” movement to respond to climate change and economic instability by creating strong local communities and economies. Palsson also works as a science teacher, and formerly taught US and World History at Kelseyville High School. Before working toward his teaching credential, Palsson also substitute-taught in many grade levels and districts all around Lake County. 

Achieving tuition-free public college and universal pre-K for all children, and ending the student debt crisis for the millions of Americans crippled by student loans, are among Palsson’s legislative priorities. 

Father to 5-year-old Satya Rose, Palsson writes that parental concerns are a driving force behind his run for Congress. “The climate crisis is very real, and harmful practices like fracking are polluting our groundwater. The status quo is failing our children and grandchildren, failing future generations,” he writes. “Future generations will judge us for the actions we take right now to reverse the climate crisis and build a just society for all.”

Palsson claims that his refusal to accept corporate lobbyist funding places him in a stronger position to be a faithful representative to the people. “Unlike most of the Democrats and Republicans in Congress, including our own incumbent Congressman, I do not accept money from the fossil fuel industry or big banks. I will work to ensure that all our children inherit a healthy planet, a strong economy, and a just society. I stand with the people.”

Endorsements for Palsson’s 2016 campaign included the national group Elect Bernie Thinkers, and he is currently supported by a growing list of community members and working people from around the district. 

Running in a four-way primary on June 5, in which the top two candidates advance to the November election regardless of party, Palsson hopes to be the one to challenge the long-time incumbent. The race also includes one Green Party candidate, Jason Kishineff, as well as an additional No Party Preference candidate, Anthony Mills, whose Facebook profile lists him as a resident of Las Cruces, New Mexico.

Palsson supports a Constitutional Amendment to end what he refers to as “the disastrous Citizens United ruling” and establish that corporations are not people, and that campaign contributions do not constitute free speech. 

Born in San Francisco and educated at New York University, Palsson moved to Lake County in 2010, where he became involved in grassroots efforts to build a stronger local community.

He was displaced during the Valley Fire of 2015. Although the fire didn’t consume his home, Palsson was ultimately displaced when his landlords chose to sell the home he was renting in the burn zone. He subsequently moved to Santa Rosa.

“I am just like the rest of the people in my district,” Palsson wrote in a statement. “I’m dealing directly with challenges like student debt and the housing crisis. I know how it feels to be a working-class parent – and I am ready to represent the working-class people of this district in Congress.”

More information about his campaign is available at

The primary election will be held June 5. The deadline to register to vote is May 21.