HEADLINES: Corporate Dems in Denial | Latest News from Capitol Hill | Big Down-Ballot Wins! | Voting Rights Now | Strikevember! | & MUCH MORE!
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Progressives landed important wins on Tuesday, but the results also show that a Trump-inspired red wave will sweep the 2022 elections if corporate power stops us from materially improving the lives of the American people and defending our democracy from the right-wing war on voting rights. Become a member of Our Revolution to help turn the tide.
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WHAT A WEEK! THE ELECTION, THE BUDGET BATTLE & WHAT’S NEXT …
Republicans are on the rise and Democrats are on the defensive, but our progressive movement is fighting back. We are our own best chance to beat back the tide of corporate authoritarianism by electing more of our allies, delivering policy, and expanding democracy.
This week, corporate Dems and their media mouthpieces blamed progressives’ for their electoral losses in Virginia and elsewhere. “Psychologically, it’s ‘moderates’ in denial – that’s what they have to do to defend their inaction in Congress,” Our Revolution Executive Director Joseph Geevarghese told The Hill.
The reality is: Our Revolution-endorsed progressive candidates won at all ballot levels by championing Bernie-inspired policy platforms.
Not only did we clinch mayoral seats in major municipalities, but Our Revolution also passed popular local ballot measures on housing, criminal justice reform – even a $15 min wage in the hometown of Sen. Kyrsten Sinema.
Meanwhile, the corporate wing of the party continues to actively fight against the policies voters want most, double down on the culture war, and run head-on into high-profile defeat. If not for corporatist obstruction, candidates could have run on making $3.5T worth of direct improvements in voters’ lives.
Late last night, the House passed the Bipartisan Infrastructure Framework with the blessing of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, who secured a promise from holdout corporate Dems to pass the Build Back Better by November 15th – as long as the Congressional Budget Office confirms the White House’s cost projections.
Can the corporatist Dems be trusted?
Will the President deliver on his own campaign promises?
Some progressives were not convinced – AOC, Cori Bush, Jamaal Bowman, Ilhan Omar, Ayanna Pressley, and Rashida Tlaib voted NO – and continued to hold the line. But 13 Republicans joined to ensure passage.
Earlier this week, Our Revolution and our allies pushed from the outside to get more of our priorities put back in the BBB framework – like four weeks of paid leave and some negotiated drug pricing. And Our Revolution played a critical role in making sure the bill ends $86B worth of fossil fuel subsidies.
The budget framework also still contains universal pre-K, investments in climate and housing, penalties for union-busters, affordable childcare, taxes for the wealthy and corporations, and other popular policies.
Now we’ve got a short window to get the much more inclusive Build Back Better act over the line and take the fight to the Senate.
Tuesday’s election results drive home the urgency with which Democrats must deliver tangible improvements in voters’ lives to avoid a total slaughter in the 2022 midterms and beyond.
Moral of the story – the corrupting force of money in politics is silencing voters. Republicans outright suppress voter turnout, while corporate Dems depress voter turnout. Serving corporate interests at voters’ expense is not a winning electoral strategy or an ethical way to govern.
Progressive power and policies are the antidotes to despair and right-wing rule. The stakes are high and our window is small. Become a recurring donor today to build on our wins.
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Join our Live Monday Night Broadcast for our post-election takes and a budget bill update, featuring progressive champions like Austin City Councilmember Greg Casar and other activists fighting to end police abuse and raise wages.
Please submit your questions for our progressive champions HERE!
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BIG DOWN-BALLOT WINS!
At the level of government closest to people’s lives, we’re electing progressive champions who are fighting to address the issues we care about most: climate change, affordable housing, addressing poverty, and criminal justice reform.
Our Revolution has an over 65% win rate for 2021, electing 146 new progressive champions up and down the ballot. We are building out the bench – filling out school boards, city councils, mayoral seats, and more!
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Not only did we elect progressives at nearly every level of government, but our newly-elected progressives are also majority female and majority people of color.
Read on to meet a few of Tuesday’s winning candidates!
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While the mainstream media interpreted the defeat of India Walton for mayor of Buffalo as a sign that progressive power is waning, the real story is the opposite: Progressives flexed our power with multiple mayoral wins in major cities on Tuesday.
Cleveland’s new mayor, Justin Bibb, beat the machine candidate without shying away from his support of the Safer Cleveland Initiative which will create a Community Police Commission.
Cincinnati’s new mayor, Aftab Pureval, made history as the first Asian American elected to the top spot in the city, and he did it by laying out a clear plan to address the pressing issues facing Cincinnati, such as affordable housing.
And Boston’s new mayor, Michelle Wu won resoundingly on the promise of a Green New Deal, rent control/stabilization, and eliminating public transit fares.
“ You’re starting to see a new generation of progressive chief executives emerge. I think that is a sign of the maturation of the progressive movement,” Joseph Geevarghese, executive director of Our Revolution, told The Hill. “They didn’t speak in abstract terms, they didn’t speak in slogans, they proposed concrete things that were going to make their cities work better.”
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Speaking of mayors, we’ll be holding Mayor-elect Eric Adams to account in New York City, where progressives won 2 of 3 top city-wide offices with about as many votes as (and higher percentages than) Adams.
NYC Public Advocate Jumaane Williams and NYC Comptroller Brad Lander pledged to fight to make sure the incoming Adams Administration sticks to the people’s agenda. As Brad told the NY Daily News, he’s going to “audit the hell out of city agencies” and fight corruption in his new role as the city’s fiscal watchdog.
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On Tuesday, Our Revolution also helped progressive candidates clinch city council seats in unlikely places – from democratic socialist Richie Floyd in St. Petersburg, Fla. to Black Lives Matter activist Indira Sheumaker in Des Moines, Iowa.
In New York City, public defender Tiffany Caban will join our newly-elected progressive champions on the City Council to make it the most diverse and progressive body ever.
A big win also came in Dayton, Ohio, where Shenise Turner-Sloss and Darryl Fairchild ran together and won two open commission seats on a message of change and transparency.
And last but not least, two of Our Revolution Ohio leaders won their City Council races: Josie Moore in Cleveland Heights and Patricia Blochowiak in East Cleveland.
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BREAKING DOWN THE BALLOT MEASURES!
After trying every way to be heard by their Senator Kyrsten Sinema, Arizona voters sent a message out of Tucson on Tuesday she can’t ignore.
Voters passed a city-wide $15 minimum wage by a margin of 2-1 in the hometown of Sinema, who famously curtseyed giving a thumbs-down to a vote for federal living wage last spring. Sinema’s right-wing devotion to corporate rule is not going unchallenged in the streets or at the polls!
Congratulations to Our Revolution Minnesota on 2 local affordable housing wins! St. Paul voted to enact a rent control measure that prohibits landlords from raising rents by more than 3% in one year. And, Minneapolis voted to give the council permission to enact limits on rent increases.
Criminal Justice Reform was a winning ballot issue this election despite the corporate media’s narrative.
In Austin, Texas, where 68% of the vote took down Proposition A, preventing the city police department from having to hire an extra 300-700 officers over the next year.
In Cleveland, Ohio, voters succeeded in passing Issue 24 to establish a Civilian Police Review Board and allow a special commission of citizens, chosen by Mayor-elect Justin Bibb, to be in charge of investigating reports of police misconduct.
“The message of police accountability and oversight resonates,” Joseph Geevarghese, Our Revolution Executive Director told the Huffington Post in an interview. “That’s clear.”
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WHEN WE ORGANIZE, WE WIN!
Our movement’s 2021 victories didn’t happen because we’re lucky. It happened because we did the hard work of organizing.
Our Revolution members made 350,000 voter contacts ahead of Tuesday’s General Election to help our candidates make it over the finish line!
Thanks to all our members who stood up to knock on doors, phone bank, send texts, talk to friends and family, work polling stations, transport voters, and donate to Our Revolution, and to our candidates to make these electoral victories possible.
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We’re up against some of the most powerful entities on earth, but nothing is stronger than the power of the people.
The big money is fighting against us because they know our strategy is working. Become a member to maximize our momentum.
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VOTING RIGHTS: NO MORE EXCUSES!
On Wednesday, Our Revolution members and Board Chair Larry Cohen were arrested alongside Martin Luther King III in a protest for voting rights in front of the White House.
We rallied in coalition with the People for the American Way, Black Votes Matter, and other organizations to tell President Biden: No More Excuses! Biden said after our previous actions that he is open to carving out an exception in the filibuster for voting rights – now he must follow through.
For the fourth time this year, as arrests were happening outside the Biden White House, Republicans filibustered voting rights – this time blocking the John Lewis Act voting rights bill in the Senate.
Voting rights are more critical than ever: The GOP is waging a war on voters and Democrats will face grueling midterms.
Sen. Jeff Merkley (OR) joined a panel of voting rights leaders for our Live Monday Night Broadcast, pinning down the need to fix or nix the filibuster to pass voting rights.
“This is about government for the powerful versus government for the people,” Merkley said. “We are seeing corruption up and down the ballot from Republicans, so we cannot expect them to help pass voting rights. We must reform the filibuster.”
Ben Jealous, president of People for the American Way, said on our Live Monday Night Broadcast that the only way voting rights are “going to get through is if there’s a carve-out in the filibuster. And, the only way that happens is if the president himself calls for it.”
“If Donald Trump can call for a carve-out in the filibuster to pack the Supreme Court, then Joe Biden can certainly do it to save our democracy – and that’s what’s at stake,” Jealous said. He stressed the urgency to do this before the end of the year to impact the redistricting process, and stop the electoral map from being skewed even further to Republicans’ advantage.
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PUSH FOR POLICE OVERSIGHT IN ILLINOIS
Our Revolution: Will County Progressives continue pushing for a citizen advisory board to oversee police in Joliet, Ill.
However, the Joliet City Council continues to delay the measure until a new chief is hired, Outline reports. The latest interim chief would be the third in a year. “With the high attrition they have, we shouldn’t wait around for anyone,” said Suzanna Ibarra, chair of Will County Progressives.
Suzanna said she believed Thursday’s proposal would have been adopted since activists met “multiple, multiple times” with police officials and council members.
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Wednesday evening, Our Revolution Maryland convened a Town Hall on Tackling the Climate Crisis.
State Senator Arthur Ellis joined us to discuss a light-rail system he’s championing for southern Maryland. He said, “light rail is good for the environment, it’s good for folks looking to save commuting time, and it’s good for healthcare.”
Jared Schablein, Chair of Our Revolution Maryland’s Lower Shore Chapter, spoke of the benefits of two wind projects off Maryland’s Atlantic Coast. “We have an opportunity as a state to be world leaders in the clean green energy industry and we should take it,” Jared said.
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JOHN DEERE STRIKERS FIGHT ON
Striketober is rolling into Strikesgiving with 22,000 American workers on strike, and those at John Deere voting down what the company claims is its final offer.
Larry Cohen, Our Revolution board chair and former president of the Communications Workers of America told The New York Times the second “no” vote could indicate union members felt the strike was working and further gains were possible.
The corporation responded by walking away from the bargaining table. “They’re saying what they believe, their feelings are hurt,” Larry said of John Deere. “But what are they going to do about it? They’re not going to get the workers back.”
Larry noted that Deere employees are among the relatively rare group of workers in the United States able to bargain on a company-wide scale, and that, along with their stature in the communities where plants are situated, gives them considerable leverage.
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Political change requires working-class power and solidarity.
At this historic juncture, we must have each other’s back to push the struggle forward. We invite you to invest in the mission of Our Revolution as we rise up to meet the challenges of our time.
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In an op-ed in Insider NJ, Our Revolution Regional Organizing Coordinator Anna-Marta Visky wrote of the debt Gov. Phil Murphy owes to New Jersey progressives, who worked to deliver the margin of victory in his tight re-election on Tuesday.
During Murphy’s first term in office, “Our Revolution New Jersey activists helped turn universal sick leave and a statewide $15 minimum wage from policy proposals into a reality,” Anna-Marta noted. She predicted – correctly – that these progressive policy wins will help excite the progressive base and keep Murphy in office.
Now Murphy can return the favor and empower progressives in the Garden State by taking on the Democratic Party’s rigged ballot system that favors establishment incumbents.
As Ana Marta wrote: “If party leaders would embrace competitive primary elections and abolish the “line” ballot system, it would help re-engage voters in the democratic process and diversify the field of candidates. It would strengthen democracy in our state. It would help Democratic candidates up and down the ballot and increase voter turnout. And, yes, it would give progressives a fighting chance in primary elections.”
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As America’s largest people-powered political organization that doesn’t take big money on principle, Our Revolution has the autonomy to fight for our progressive values on every front. Become a member today – we’re on the right side of history, and we’re just getting started.
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MASS MOBILIZATION FOR VOTING RIGHTS!
With the GOP waging an all-out War on Voters, Our Revolution is once again joining forces with People for the American Way at the White House on Wednesday, November 17th to call on President Biden to ensure the smooth passage of federal voting rights legislation.
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Can’t come to DC? Join one of the actions in support of voting rights around the country next week!
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Our Revolution South Carolina continues its series on how to ensure affordable quality healthcare to all in the Palmetto State! Come hear from advocates and experts on the ways you can get involved in guaranteeing health care for all!
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