News from the Frontlines of the Political Revolution!
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This week is pivotal for our fight to defend democracy & voting rights!
Find out the latest our National Organize to Win Call on Monday night, featuring Sen. Jeff Merkley, lead sponsor of the For the People Act in the Senate; State Rep. Jasmine Crockett, who led the fight to defend voting rights in Texas; and Barbara Arnwine of the Transformative Justice Coalition; and Cynthia Nixon, activist & actress, and Manhattan DA candidate Tahanie Aboushi!
Our Revolution is proud to congratulate US Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee – an OR endorsed progressive champion – on her work to get Juneteenth declared a national holiday! As the President & Congress take up measures to defend voting rights this week, Juneteenth reminds us that we must be ever-vigilant in protecting our freedom and our democracy from the forces of racial, economic and social oppression.
IN THIS WEEK’S ISSUE: Read about how Our Revolution is …
(1) Mobilizing our nationwide network of grassroots groups to hit the streets to defend democracy and support workers rights;
(2) Holding our elected officials accountable to expanding Medicare and ending fossil fuel subsidies;
(3) Electing progressive champions in OH, NY and other critical states;
(4) Fighting for progressive policies like the For The People Act; the PRO Act;
(5) Transforming the Democratic Party by electing progressives to serve in party leadership; and MORE!
Founded by Bernie Sanders, Our Revolution is America’s leading grassroots-funded progressive political action organization. Make a recurring monthly donation of $5 and help us keep the political revolution going strong!
This summer is the last best shot to get President Biden and Congressional Democrats to deliver on Our Revolution’s Top 5 Progressive Priorities: Protecting voting rights, expanding Medicare coverage and lowering prescription drug prices, protecting the climate and ending fossil fuel subsidies, making the wealthy pay their fair share, and passing a $15 minimum wage and labor reform. Read below to learn about how we’re organizing to win!
IT’S NOW OR NEVER!
US Rep. Pramila Jayapal, chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, joined our Monday Organize to Win Call to brief us on the strategy to pass Medicare expansion and end taxpayer subsidies for fossil fuel extraction.
The CPC has organized a block of House Democrats – from moderates to progressives – calling on President Biden to dramatically expand Medicare as part of his American Jobs and Families Plan. The expansion would lower the Medicare eligibility age, add dental, vision and hearing benefits, and lower prescription drug prices. “This is not just the right thing to do – it is wildly popular across the country. And not just in progressive districts but in very Republican-heavy districts.”
Rep. Jayapal also said that “a top priority of the CPC is really bold action on climate, and that includes ending fossil fuel subsidies.” She called the $20 billion our government gives to the fossil fuel industry every year “a huge waste of taxpayer money” and said there’s broad support across the Democratic caucus to end the subsidies and to use that money to pay for other priorities.
She declared that progressives will hold the line if the White House tries to cut a watered-down bipartisan deal with the GOP. “We are not going to let go of our agenda. We’re not going to vote yes on a bill unless we have a reconciliation package that has everything in there.”
IT’S TIME TO DEFEND OUR DEMOCRACY!
The fight for voting rights – and defending our democracy – is heating up on Capitol Hill!
On Tuesday, the Senate will hold a hearing on S.51, the DC statehood bill. We’ve made real progress: this is the first time the Senate is hearing a bill on DC statehood that has already passed the House, and S.51 has a record 46 co-sponsors in the Senate. Senate Republicans – recognizing that statehood would give Democrats two more US Senate seats – will fight tooth and nail and try to use the filibuster to deny voting rights to 700,000 residents in the plurality Black District of Columbia.
That’s why Our Revolution members will be rallying on Capitol Hill on Tuesday morning to rally with DC Vote. JOIN US!
VOTING RIGHTS FIGHTBACK!
This week, Sen. Jeff Merkley – lead sponsor of the For the People Act – is working with Majority Leader Chuck Schumer to bring this critical piece of voting rights legislation to the floor. The good news is that our pressure campaign is getting Manchin (the only Democrat to not sign-on) to move on key provisions – he recently released a proposal for a weakened version of bill that includes voting rights and gerrymandering reform, but leaves out public financing of elections and other provisions that would get big money out of politics.
However, only hours after Manchin’s proposal was released, Mitch McConnell demonstrated once again that hopes for bipartisanship are either deluded or deceitful: he declared even this weakened proposal dead on arrival, with all 50 Republican Senators opposed.
WARNING TO WARNER
On Saturday, over 150 Our Revolution members rallied outside Amazon’s HQ2 in Crystal City, Virginia, calling on Sen. Mark Warner to support the PRO Act, a labor law reform proposal before Congress that would curb corporate union-busting and make it easier for workers to form unions. Sen. Warner – who has pocketed tens of thousands of dollars from Amazon executives – is one of the few Democrats who don’t support the legislation. Warner also happens to be the richest Democrat in the U.S. Senate.
“Jeff Bezos is worth over $187 billion dollars while his workers are treated like robots and have to piss in water bottles because they don’t get breaks,” said Joseph Geevarghese, Executive Director of Our Revolution. “This behavior of mistreating American workers is unacceptable. It’s time for Senator Warner to pick a side. He can either pick the side of Amazon and corporate greed or he can pick the side of America’s workers. All companies should allow their workers to organize and have a voice on the job.”
WHAT’S DISGUSTING? UNION BUSTING!
Our Revolution members were joined by leaders from the Communications Workers of America, the Virginia Federation of Labor, the Catholic Labor Network and others who spoke about the renewed urgency of protecting worker rights in the post-pandemic period.
“We’ve learned some very very important lessons during this pandemic,” noted CWA’s Shane Larson. “It’s been shown that the unionized long-term nursing care facilities have lower death rates because the workers are unionized. The PRO Act benefits all workers. As we come out of this pandemic it is important that we embrace that lesson and move forward to make sure that all workers have the voice and the power on the job.”
After the rally, Our Revolution members made thousands of phone calls to Sen. Warner and the other two Democrats not on the bill – Arizona’s Kyrsten Sinema and Mark Kelly. During the phone bank, we patched-through constituents to their Senator’s office with the simple message: “Support working people. Support the PRO Act!”
As part of our Amazon campaign, Our Revolution / Labor for Bernie leaders Rand Wilson and Joe Lawrence hosted an organizing call with award-winning journalist Alec MacGillis, author of “Fulfillment: Winning and Losing in One-Click America.” The book tracks Amazon’s impact and influence on the wealth and poverty of cities and towns across the U.S. MacGillis reaches the conclusion that “Amazon is driving a lot of the inequality and regional disparity in our country,” and argues that these disparities paved the way for the rise of Donald Trump and continue to feed into our national politics. He touches on Amazon’s warehouse working conditions, tax avoidance game, and detrimental impact on small businesses.
STOP THE BEZOS BAILOUT
And one last item while we’re on the topic of Amazon, Jeff Bezos is trying to get corporate Democrats in Congress to give him $10 billion for his rocket ships.
The US Senate just passed a bill (SB 1260: the US Innovation & Competition Act) that will allow NASA to spend up to $10 billion on Blue Origin, to compensate for their loss to Space X in a recent contract competition.
Bernie tried to stop this amendment, saying “It does not make a lot of sense to me that we would provide billions of dollars to a company owned by the wealthiest guy in America.”
Our Revolution agrees – a union-busting, tax-evading billionaire shouldn’t get a taxpayer bailout.
From standing with warehouse workers trying to organize in Bessemer, to marching on Amazon HQ2 outside of Washington DC to call out corporate greed, Our Revolution is fighting the billionaire class and the politicians that enable them!
UNION WORKERS TO MANCHIN: SAVE OUR JOBS!
On our Monday Organize to Win Call, United Steelworkers local union leader Joe Gouzd called on his first cousin Sen. Joe Manchin to take action and save 1500 jobs at a Pfizer-owned pharmaceutical plant in West Virginia from being offshored to India. “We need Senator Manchin’s support, and we are bewildered as to why he isn’t stepping up for his constituents. He is nowhere to be found, and has been pretty much a ghost since we were notified of the shutdown.” Maybe Joe Manchin is hiding because of his daughter’s involvement with Mylan: Heather Bresch was the company’s CEO and retired right before the notice of closure – with an estimated $37 million golden parachute.
Our Revolution West Virginia – led by Jenny Craig – is organizing in solidarity with the workers by hosting town hall meetings and engaging local officials to stand up to corporate greed!
MEDICARE FOR ALL IN THE GARDEN STATE
On the day that the Supreme Court upheld the Affordable Care Act, Our Revolution New Jersey and Public Citizen held a call with US Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman, labor allies, small business owners, and immigrant rights activists to discuss our next steps in the fight for Medicare for All. Building on our recent victory of getting Rep. Frank Pallone to support Medicare for All, and work to pass the state’s 10th local Medicare for All resolution, the coalition is implementing a statewide strategy to pressure the New Jersey congressional delegation in three key districts to become Medicare for All co-sponsors, as well as passing more resolutions and sharing patient stories from the communities most affected by the current healthcare system. As Trenton Councilman Santiago Rodriguez said, “the ACA was a great first step, but we need to continue the fight until we get Medicare for All.”
On Sunday June 13th, Our Revolution Illinois: Will County Progressives held a rally in Plainfield, Illinois to stand in support of Palestinian people who are suffering at the hands of the government of Israel. Over 75 people rallied, marched and then took action to call on their members of Congress to support co-sponsor H.R. 2590, a bill sponsored by Rep. Betty McCollum that will ensure we are not paying for Israel’s destruction of Palestinian homes, annexation of Palestinian land, and detention of Palestinian children.
Our Revolution joined with progressive organizations to support Rep. Ilhan Omar against attacks about her recent tweet. “Representative Ilhan Omar is facing a smear campaign for daring to name what few will: That all victims of war crimes deserve justice, regardless of who commits the crimes … These attacks and intentional twisting of her words are designed not only to silence criticism of U.S. foreign policy, but to silence an outspoken woman of color.”
NO FOSSIL FUELS!
On Thursday, Our Revolution’s Virginia Organizer Kristin Hoffman, Food and Water Watch’s Virginia Organizer Jolene Mafnas, and Our Revolution Falls Church leader Stephen Spitz delivered a petition to the Northern Virginia office of Congressman Don Beyer. The petition, signed by over 300 of Representative Beyer’s constituents, calls on him to support the End Polluter Welfare Act, which would end subsidies to the fossil fuel industry and incentivize them to keep it in the ground! The bill is being sponsored by Our Revolution endorsed progressive champions Ilhan Omar, AOC, Rashida Tlaib, Chuy Garcia, Ayanna Pressley and others!
DCist reached out to Our Revolution Maryland in recent coverage of next year’s Montgomery County Executive race which is shaping up as a referendum on progressive incumbent Marc Elrich whom Our Revolution endorsed in 2018. “[Challenger Hans] Riemer has answered to the developers’ desires,” says Ed Fischman, a co-chair with Our Revolution Montgomery County. “He’s been really focused on creating more housing, but he’s not focused on creating more community for the residents. It’s housing that’s going to be really profitable for the developers.”
KNOCK-KNOCK: HELLO SOMEBODY!
Our Revolution Ohio activists descended on Akron Saturday June 12th to meet with and help elect Senator Nina Turner to Congress. Led by Gary Cox from Our Revolution Central Ohio, canvassers knocked on 750 doors at this Neighbors for Nina event. The canvassers received warm welcomes with a majority of those contacted saying they support Nina to represent the 11th District. These results mirror a recent poll that has Nina with 50% of the vote – over 3 times more than the second place candidate who was just endorsed by Hillary Clinton.
It’s no surprise that the Democratic establishment is trying to stop Nina — Hillary Clinton also endorsed Jamaal Bowman’s opponent last year. We helped Bowman win, and now we’re going to help Nina defeat Hillary’s pick!
Let’s show the political establishment that our people-powered grassroots movement is ready to send another Medicare for All champion to Congress by splitting $10 between Our Revolution and Nina Turner’s campaign?
Our Revolution members are working hard to make Maya Wiley the next Mayor and to elect over 30 other progressive champions in next Tuesday’s New York City election. Term-limits have created open seats up and down the ballot and the winners of these races will be determined using ranked-choice voting for the first time ever- presenting a unique opportunity for our people-powered movement to propel progressives into power.
This weekend is the last chance for New Yorkers to VOTE EARLY. Tell your friends and family to
Our Revolution Texas helped elect 3 progressive champions to the San Antonio City Council this month, and one of the winners, Teri Castillo, was featured on our Monday Organize to Win Call. Although it was her first run for political office, Teri scored high-profile endorsements from Bernie and Julian Castro. And in spite of her opponent receiving tens of thousands of dollars from the real estate industry, Teri – a fearless affordable housing advocate – won her race by a landslide. “We know that the powerful are scared of how we intend to use public money for public good and invest in our public housing.” The district she will represent is home to nearly a third of San Antonio’s public housing stock, which is at risk of being demolished.
Our Revolution Maine members were disappointed when Seth Braun moved from Bangor to Tyngsboro, Massachusetts in March. But Maine’s loss has proven to be Mass’s gain – Seth just won the June 15th race for Housing Board Commissioner! “Now,” says Seth, “I get to be a part of the body which helps create and maintain affordable housing in town. I’m excited to be a part of building a community in our new home already after moving here just two months ago.”
“Grassroots activists in the Democrats Party overwhelmingly support an end to over 100 years of federal welfare for the oil and gas industry,” said Our Revolution Michigan Leader Michelle Deatrick, who serves as Chair of the DNC Environment & Climate Crisis Council.
That’s why Our Revolution is joining with the DNC Climate Council, the College Democrats of America, and the Environmental Caucuses of the Young Democrats and the College Democrats to host an online rally on Sunday, June 27th, 7pm ET.
Our movement has a historic opportunity to end the over $15 billion in annual handouts to the fossil fuel industry and to invest instead in a green, sustainable future. This exciting event will kick off a Week of Action to end fossil fuel handouts that Our Revolution and other progressive organizations are leading.
From the beginning, Our Revolution has been focused on transforming the Democratic Party so that it represents working people, not corporate donors. That means fighting for a progressive platform and it means working towards structural change within the party. After the 2016 election, we successfully organized to get so-called super or non-elected delegates out of the nominating process, open up primaries to unaffiliated voters, and allow vote by mail for both primaries and caucuses. We need to keep building on those wins, and that’s why Our Revolution, the Progressive Democrats of America, and the Bernie Delegates Network are identifying progressive party activists so that we can coordinate and share ideas.
Join Our Revolution Massachusetts LGBTQ+ Caucus, Senator Ed Markey and local elected officials as we discuss what Progressive Pride could look like in the Bay State!
Join Our Revolution, Greenpeace, Sierra Club and others for a rally at the US Capitol to call on Congress to end fossil fuel subsidies once and for all on Tuesday, June 29th!