Recently at our 2010 Spring Fest event, Oregon Labor Commissioner Brad Avakian gave a speech that I found extremely powerful, inspiring and moving. For several days after the event I thought about Brad's words, how his speech gave life to the differences between conservative and progressive values, and how the values and actions of Democrats make a positive impact on the lives of us all.
I contacted Brad and asked if I could have a copy of the speech, and if I could publish it on the website. I think I actually embarrassed him a little! He graciously sent me a copy and granted permission to publish or share it as I pleased.
Thank you Brad, it is people like you that make me proud to be a Democrat.
Please click the attachment link to open a pdf copy of Brad's speech. I hope you find it as powerful and inspiring as I do.
Vice Chair, Washco Dems
(from Sen Jeff Merkley)
Great articel on a winning strategy for us this year.
This has been a long time coming, but we will soon be living in a country where most all of its citizens will not have to worry about health care coverage for themselves and their children. A country where those of us who have coverage will not have to wonder about how long we will keep it.
America is still the land of big things and big ideas. Where we can get things done. looking beyond just ourselves and to the good of our people and the country. 32 million people will be covered over the next few years, many of the benefits start this year.
The health insurance companies were not doing their job. They were continuing to cherry pick the healthy, and leaving more and more people without coverage. It was good for their bottom line, but bad for the country. This was never a government take over of health care, but simply regulating the insurance industry so that it has to do its job - provide insurance to all Americans.
Government can and must play a role in providing public goods. Health care, education, these are goods that the private sector cannot sufficiently supply on its own. These and other infrastructural capital investments require a public - private partnership. This is not socialism, this is how capitalism works in the real world, when you take the ideological blinders off.
We have made history, the biggest achievement since the voting rights act and medicare. Its something to be proud of and its something that must now be defended. We have to fight to support this achievement and show that our politicians will be rewarded when they work for the American people instead of bowing to rigid ideology or those who spend large sums to defend the status quo.
Hillary Clinton : Foreign aid: Women's progress is human progress, and human progress is women's progressSubmitted by Mike_Hiland on March 30, 2010 - 10:44pm
Foreign aid: Women's progress is human progress, and human progress is women's progress
The evidence is irrefutable: When women are free to develop their talents and contribute fully to their societies, everyone benefits
After working hard to correct a Medicare payment disparity that affects small states like Oregon. David Wu has reaffirmed his long time committment to supporting the final Health Care Reform package. Please contact his office and thank them for all the hard work that they put into this. Together we will make history!
Here is the link to his statement:
Great news: This weekend's events were a huge success. OFA volunteers all over the country helped tens of thousands of voters in key districts speak out for reform.
Phones have been ringing off the hook in Capitol Hill offices for days, but with everything on the line and so little time left, we have to bring our voice to Congress through every possible channel.
So today, OFA supporters are taking the next step in the Final March for Reform: Writing to Congress. Using our online tool, it just takes a few minutes to write and send your own letter directly to Rep. David Wu.
Right now, Congress is under attack from insurance lobbyists who are trying to drown us out, so we've set a goal of 17 letters from Sherwood to make sure our message breaks through.
Can you help? Get started here.
In the days ahead, we'll keep you up-to-date on the latest news on health reform as it breaks -- so keep checking your email. But right now, please make sure supporters of reform in Congress continue to hear our thanks for their efforts -- and that everyone hears their constituents' overwhelming support for reform. Click here to write your letter:
Please attend one of these health care events in our area and help make history by securing health care for all Americans.Submitted by Mike_Hiland on March 12, 2010 - 9:17pm
Saturday, March 13 12:00 PM
16201 SE McLoughlin Blvd (Oak Grove, OR)
Rep. Schrader is holding a "Congress on the Corner" event to allow constituents to talk with him one-on-one. Please attend this event and make sure...
Sunday, March 14 5:30 PM
OFA Office (Portland, OR)
The attached files provide a wealth of information about whats at stake for Health Care Reform. This is our time, a time for us to make history and do something good for our people and our country. Please look these over, use them, and lets get over the finish line.
By People for the American Way
Investigative reporter Tom Hamburger has an excellent article in today's Los Angeles Times on the tens of millions of dollars pouring into the U.S. Chamber of Commerce to defeat candidates who stand in the way of Big Business.
As Hamburger reports, the Chamber spent $144 million last year on advocacy and plans to spend substantially more this year. And those dollars will have more impact than ever thanks to the Supreme Court, which recently ruled 5-4 that giant corporations can directly oppose or support candidates for public office.
The article also explains how companies use the Chamber to do their dirty work while concealing their involvement:
New Report from Citizens for Tax Justice
Rep. Ryan's House GOP Budget Plan: Federal Government Would Collect $2 Trillion Less Over a Decade and Yet Require Bottom 90 Percent to Pay Higher Taxes
Read the report.
It's difficult to design a tax plan that will lose $2 trillion over a decade even while requiring 90 percent of taxpayers to pay more. But Congressman Paul Ryan has met that daunting challenge. This analysis makes obvious that Congressman Ryan's budget plan has nothing to do with balancing the budget, but has everything to do with creating a system that takes more from the poor and less from the rich.
If the extensive tax proposals in his plan were fully in effect in 2011:
From Jennifer Warren:
It was my great honor to work in the Capitol during the amazing 2003 session, and then-Rep. Westlund's return after his first surgery for lung cancer was capped by this floor speech, which none of us present will ever forget.
His words are as true today as they were then, and given the state of our state and the last session, they have an even deeper meaning and resonance.
They should open every legislative session with this speech.
Ben Westlund came back to the Legislature humbled by his experience, and with a very different attitude about how the people of Oregon are impacted by the actions of their elected officials.
Of all his other accomplishments, and the accolades rightfully bestowed on him, after this speech- I knew him best as one of the great champions for affordable health care in Oregon.
Please contact congressman David Wu (email or 503-326-2901 ) and ask that he support the bill. This is a truly historic vote that we see only once in a generation. It will bring health care to 30 million Americans and end insurance company denial of coverage abuses. It is not a perfect bill, but it is a big step forward which will make a difference to the lives of millions. We cannot turn our back on them.
From Wendy Kroger
Well, that's exactly what's going to happen next week. On February 24th, together with allies from labor unions, progressive blogs, Health Care for America Now, and others, we're organizing a massive day of action: the Virtual March for Real Health Care Reform.
This is it. Obama health reform proposal combining the house and senate passed versions and setup so that it can be passed with 51 senators via reconcillation if the republicans continue to show no interest in reform. Its time to get r done!
From the masthead at WashcoDems.org:
The purpose of the Democratic Party of Washington County is to elect qualified Democrats to public office; adopt a platform and work to ensure it is carried into law; provide a link between Washington County Democrats, the First Congressional District and the State Central Committee; inform voters about Democratic Party principles; and increase membership in the Central Committee and Democratic Party.
We also encourage Democrats to run for public office and to serve on local boards and commissions.
We are Democrats for a working democracy.
Please join us and become involved in creating a better government.
From the masthead at WashcoRep.org:
Standing Up To the Ruling Democrats in Salem and DC
|(from Stand for Children)|
Even without the $727 million budget gap that measures 66 and 67 prevented, we have our work cut out for us. But we’re not giving up – we’re ready to take the next step.
Lack of stable funding hampers Oregon school districts from making sustained investments in the programs and services that are proven to make a difference for kids. We finally add back librarians only to cut music teachers the next year. We invest in needed after-school and summer programs or targeted class size reductions, only to eliminate those programs in the next recession.