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  • published DAGT October 2019 Meeting Minutes in News 2019-10-24 11:51:59 -0400

    DAGT October 2019 Meeting Minutes

    DAGT.png

    Minutes of Democrats Abroad Guatemala

    Executive Committee meeting on Thursday, October 17, 2019 at 12:00 noon at Café  Teatro El Sitio and via Skype

    Members in Attendance: John Chudy, Chair; Kee Adams Evans, Events Coordinator; Hyungjoon Jin, Member at Large; Sheryl Larson, Member; and via Skype, Scotney Young, Media Contact; and Juan Pablo Aris, Counsel.

     

    Per our bylaws (paragraph 19.3), all meetings are open to all members. 

    Called to order at 11:59

    Approval of Agenda and Minutes: Minutes from September meeting and October agenda were approved with spelling corrections.

    Treasurer’s report: Current balance is Q4538.

    Chair’s Report: A new recruiting email for Treasurer and Secretary will go out in November. Also needed are MeetUp Group chair for Guatemala City and start-up leader for Huehuetenango. Scotney said she continues to talk to friends and acquaintances for interest in joining DAGT and their interest in one of the open positions especially MeetUp Chair for Guatemala City.

    Amending DAGT bylaws to coincide with DPCA charter on officer elections and terms of office is under consideration and other amendments so that DAGT’s bylaws are consistent with the DPCA Charter. Proposed amendments would be voted on by the full membership at DAGT’s Annual General Meeting in 2020.

    All DAGT members should join DA’s Hispanic Caucus chaired by Michael Ramos, DA Australia. Join the Hispanic Caucus at: https://www.democratsabroad.org/hc.  In addition to bringing issues of importance to light, Michael has launched a series of Podcasts of interest to caucus members and DA members alike. Podcasts can be heard at: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/democrats-abroad-hispanic-caucus-podcast/id1476121999.

    Events for 2019:Next Movie Night will be Thursday, October 24th featuring Black Klansman at Casa Convento Concepciٕón at 6:30pm. Fahrenheit 11/9 will be featured November 19th.

    Voter registration events will begin again in January 2020, to be held monthly up to the general election in November.

    Debate Watch Party- October 15th.  Thanks to Kee and Dave for hosting the watch party. Despite heavy rain and 12 candidates over three hours of debate, eight hardy Democrats showed up to share the spectacle. Attendees were in agreement that this was the best debate so far with questions and answers more focused on substance than on show. The DNC will offer a debate in November, with the date, place and participating candidates to be determined. Dave and Kee will again host.

    Americas Region News: Americas Regional Meeting to be held October 25 - 26, 2019 in San Jose, Costa Rica. The meeting, originally scheduled for in-person attendees only, is now available via Webex. Via Webex, John and Kee will participate both Friday and Saturday, and Scotney will participate on Saturday. Other members of the Excom and the general membership interested in getting involved in the 2020 election are encouraged to join in. Here is a link to sign-up. https://forms.gle/sa7MBrkwBtc7uvsw8. Webex participants are asked to contribute $10 for one day or $15 for both days to help cover digital transmission costs, donations accepted via Paypal to demoratsabroadcostarica@gmail.com.  Friday’s agenda, after introductions and opening remarks, features the Global Primary, Communications timeline and rules, and Ballot Request/Registration processes; Saturday’s agenda will stress phone banking, the Delegate Selection Plan and conventions to elect delegates from DA to the National Convention in Milwuakee, and Communications Outreach and Talking Points.

    DAGT November Excom meeting: Thursday, November 14th, 12:00 noon at Café Teatro El Sitio and via Skype.

    Travel Notes: Mary Lou will be in and out. John will in the USA Nov 21 to December 29, 2019.

     

    Adjourned: 1:01pm.

     


  • published DA September Updates in News 2019-10-02 17:46:48 -0400

    DA September Updates

    SEPTEMBER UPDATES FROM DEMOCRATS ABROAD!

     

    We're in, we're out, we're in... Universal Postal Agreement

    Good news for our voters this fall - after very intense negotiations in Geneva this week, the US did not pull out of the Universal Postal Union. The not so good news - postal rates for mail delivery to the US will go up, rate details still unknown. Here's the story  

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    From Tom’s Desk

    Check out DNC Chair Tom Perez on The Electables podcast talking about impeachment and see what else he has been up to here

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    In case you missed it... DA conversation with Mayor Pete

    Democrats Abroad is trying to schedule conversations with all the Democratic candidates. If you missed our first candidate call yesterday with Mayor Pete, we've got you covered. Here's the video link

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    Democrats Abroad Global Presidential Primary 

    Still haven't had time to check out the Democrats Abroad ballot access petition process but have 5 minutes now? Democrats Abroad has just launched our petitions platform for Democratic presidential candidates who want to add their name to our primary ballot next year.

    Here's your handy link to the petition platform

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    Update from the Taxation Task Force: 

    The Federal Passport Revocation Policy that was enacted as part of the 2015 FAST Act has come into effect. The IRS is providing the State Department with the names of persons with outstanding and unresolved federal tax debts of $52,000 or more. Those being subjected to this provision should have been provided with notice and opportunities to cure under the policy's implementation rules.     The Tax Task Force  felt the rules had a good chance of protecting Americans abroad but ask that you keep an ear to the ground and let us know if you hear of Americans abroad who have had their passports revoked or have had their application for a passport denied as a result of this policy. Please send comments or questions to taxationtf@democratsabroad.org.

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  • September Minutes for DAGT Executive Committee Meeting

    Minutes of Democrats Abroad Guatemala

    Executive Committee meeting on Thursday, September 19, 2019 at 12:00 noon at El Sitio Café and via Skype

    Members in Attendance: John Chudy, Chair; Mary Lou Ridinger, Vice Chair; Kee Adams Evans, Events Coordinator, and via Skype, Scotney Young, Media Contact.

     

    Per our bylaws (paragraph 19.3), all meetings are open to all members. 

    Called to order at 12:06

    Approval of Agenda and Minutes: Minutes from August meeting and September agenda were approved

    Treasurer’s report: Current balance is unchanged at Q4428.

    Chair’s Report: A new recruiting email for Treasurer and Secretary will go out in November.

    Also needed, MeetUp Group chair for Guatemala City and start one in Huehuetenango.

    Mary Lou, stressed that DAGT needs new and younger leadership to ensure the integrity of our country committee going forward. Scotney said she would canvass friends and acquaintances for interest in joining DAGT and if already members, their interest in one of the open positions.

    Amending DAGT bylaws to coincide with DPCA charter on officer elections and terms of office is under consideration. Paragraph14.1 should be amended at the Annual General Meeting in March 2020.

    Events for 2019

    Movie Night Thursday, September 26th. Matewan will be shown at CCC on at 6:30pm. Kee will send out a promotional email. Black Klansman will be shown October 24th and Fahrenheit 11/9 will be featured November 19th.

    Debate Watch Party- September 12th.  Thanks to Kee and Dave for hosting. Mary Lou commented that the watch parties are best when well attended and there is a chance to discuss among participants their perceptions, comments and clarifications.

    The next debate will be over two nights, October 15th and 16th, to take place at Otterbein University in Westerville, Ohio, and will feature 11 candidates. If one of the 11 candidates drops out before the 15th, the debate will be for only one night. Kee and Dave have offered to host a watch party again for October.

    Fund Raisers: DAGT bumper sticker campaign and other items including buttons and swag received from DA Germany will be for sale at the movie night and debate watch parties. John will provide Kee a price list for the new items received from DA Germany.

    Americas Region News: (1) Americas Regional Meeting to be held October 25 - 26, 2019 in San Jose, Costa Rica. Guatemala, Chile and Peru are the only country committees in the region not attending. (2) Monthly updates for verifying older members will continue. Country committees find this approach more efficient than waiting for one big effort in January.

    DAGT October Excom meeting: Thursday, Oct 17th, 12:00 noon at El Sitio and via Skype.

    Travel Notes: Kee and Dave will be in West Virginia from o/a 26 October to o/a 11 November. Mary Lou will be in and out. Hyung will be in New Jersey Sep 29 to Oct 2.

     

    Adjourned: 1:46pm.


  • published August DAGT Excom Meeting Minutes in News 2019-08-25 13:31:26 -0400

    August DAGT Excom Meeting Minutes

    DAGT.png

    Minutes of Democrats Abroad Guatemala

    Executive Committee meeting on Thursday, August 15, 2019 at 12:00 noon at El Sitio Café and via Skype

    Members in Attendance: John Chudy, Chair; Kee Adams Evans, Events Coordinator; Dave Evans, Acting Treasurer; and via Skype Hyungjoon Jin, Member at Large, Scotney Young, Media Contact, and Aimee Van Cleave, US Peace Corps Volunteer

     Per our bylaws (paragraph 19.3), all meetings are open to all members.

    Call to order : 12:06pm

    Approval of Agenda and Minutes: July minutes and August agenda approved.

    Treasurer’s report:  Our balance as of August 15 is Q4428 (after adding back in Q95 unspent for July 18 Movie Night).

    Chair’s Report:  Aimee Van Cleave, a newly active Peace Corps Volunteer in Guatemala, was introduced as GOTV liaison with Peace Corps Volunteers in Guatemala.  Following several months of language and cross cultural training, Aimee was recently assigned to her post in San Antonio Aguas Calientes, and to her new job with the Ministry of Agriculture. Prior to joining Peace Corps, Aimee worked for the Association of State Democratic Committees (ASDC), covering western states. The mission of the ASDC is to help build strong state parties in order to elect Democrats from the State House to the White House. Prior to ASDC, Aimee served as Executive Director for the Wyoming State Democratic Party. She also has campaign experience around the United States, which among the more significant ones is that of Sen. Maggie Hassan’s of New Hampshire. Aimee will work with Kee on out-reach to the 150 Peace Corps Volunteers in Guatemala and to the extended NGO community that Peace Corps works with. Welcome Aimee!

    Another recruitment email to replace our Secretary and Treasurer will go out in November, after the Democratic presidential candidate field has thinned a bit and corresponding enthusiasm has begun to pick up. Filling the Guatemala City MeetUp Group chair and establishment of one in Huehuetenango remains active.

    Counsel, Juan Pablo Aris, got stuck in traffic near Barcenas and was unable to make the meeting, and therefore was unable to report on amending the DAGT bylaws. We will look for that report next month.

    Events for 2019: The next Movie Night will feature Matewan to be presented in September, at Casa Convento Concepción, date and time TBD. Sound issue remains to be addressed. A small amplifier which should correct the problem will arrive in country September 5th. We decided that a return to a regular monthly schedule of films is the best way to maintain interest. Another showing of Fahrenheit 11/9 will be set for October, date TBD.

    Debate Watch Party: The next debate will be take place September 12th to be held in Houston, TX. Dave and Kee have offered to host a watch party at their home.

    Fund Raisers: Democrats Abroad Guatemala bumper sticker campaign continues to go very well. Stickers are available for purchase at movie night, debate watch parties and voter registration events as long as supplies last, at Q20 each or three for Q50. Scotney has designed a Facebook challenge for best display of the bumper sticker. Kee and Scotney will continue to encourage member participation in the challenge.

    2019 FPCA promotion: Kee and Scotney have been discussing filming one or more short videos on the preparation of your FPCA.

    Americas Regional Meeting: To be held October 25 - 26, 2019 in San Jose, Costa Rica. Focus is GOTV and DA tools to enhance GOTV work including training on VoteFromAbroad.Org and approaches on outreach to voters. Americas Regional Meeting to be held October 25 - 26, 2019 in San Jose, Costa Rica. Focus is GOTV and DA tools to enhance GOTV work including training on VoteFromAbroad.Org and approaches on outreach to voters. DAGT’s representatives? The next regular monthly meeting will be September 19th via Webex at 3pm Guatemala time. A reminder and login information will be shared with the DAGT Excom prior to this meeting.

    DAGT September Excom meeting: Thursday, September 19th at 12:00 noon local time, at El Sitio café in Antigua and on Skype

    Travel Notes: Scotney will be traveling to the USA Sept 5-16. Hyung will be away in Texas, September 19-22, and in New Jersey September 29 to October 2.

    Adjourned: 1:14 pm


  • published DNC Chair Tom Perez in Mexico! in News 2019-08-22 10:47:21 -0400

    DNC Chair Tom Perez in Mexico!

    On September 28th, DNC Chair Tom Pérez will be in Mexico City for exclusive events, sharing ideas about 2020 strategy and helping to empower Democratic voters abroad. This is a unique chance to get an up-close view of how Democrats are working to build a better, brighter, fairer future for everyone.

     

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    Don’t miss this opportunity to hear about everything going into the fight against Donald Trump. In this crucial election, we need everyone educated, engaged and energized. Join us!

     

    Saturday, September 28 | 9:30 am

    Join Chairman Perez for breakfast. This will be a larger event with plenty of energy. Get your day going by meeting like-minded Democrats and sharing the excitement about organizing and mobilizing voters everywhere. 

    Details attached; please RSVP here:

     

     

    Saturday, September 28 | 7:00 pm

    You are cordially invited to an intimate dinner featuring Chairman Perez and capped at just 25 attendees. Enjoy a splendid meal and get a front-row seat as we share ideas about the fight ahead and how we win in 2020. 

    Details attached; please RSVP here:

     

     

    The race to defeat Donald Trump is in full swing and the DNC is hard at work building the strength and the organization to support our nominee from the moment they accept the nomination. We know Republicans will stop at nothing to hand tax cuts to billionaires, take away your healthcare, roll back environmental regulations and target immigrants. That’s why we must win back the White House, take back the Senate, and flip statehouses across the country.


    If you are in Mexico and are interested in joining our team of passionate and dedicated volunteers, fill out the form here:

     

     


  • published 4th of July photos and July Meeting Minutes in News 2019-07-18 16:17:09 -0400

    4th of July photos and July Meeting Minutes

    First, a HUGE gracias a todos/todas for your support and participation in this year's 4th of July Sundowner! 
    With over 80 attendees (more details in the minutes below) it was a great time!! 

     

    Read more

  • published May 2019 Meeting Minutes in News 2019-05-30 13:33:30 -0400

    May 2019 Meeting Minutes

    Minutes of Democrats Abroad Guatemala

    Executive Committee meeting on Thursday, May 23, 2019 at 12:00 noon

    Via Skype

    Members in Attendance: John Chudy, Chair; Kee Adams Evans, Events Coordinator; Dave Evans, Member at Large, and Juan Pablo Aris, Counsel.

     

    Call to order: 12:06pm Central America Time (2:06pm EDT)

    Agenda and minutes from April meeting were approved

    Chair’s Report: On May 22nd, citing personal reasons, Tom and Lyn Totino submitted their resignations, as Treasurer and Secretary respectively. A motion was made by the Chair to accept the resignations. The motion Passed. Dave Evans, as Member at Large, will become Acting Treasurer until at new Treasurer can be named. John and Kee will tag-team the Secretary’s responsibilities until a new Secretary can be named.

    We also need to fill MeetUp Group chair for Guatemala City.

    Events for 2019 Film Series update. Next film: ‘Fahrenheit 11/9’. Date, time, place will be set when John returns with a copy of the film in June. Future films may include Green Book, To Kill a Mockingbird, Matewan.

    Outreach to younger voters: Venue research of Frida’s and Saul’s was not carried out. Discussion ended on agreement that it would be best if a millennial were to organize events with a younger-voter focus. Details will continue to be discussed.

    June 26 and 27 Debate Watch Parties: Dave and Kee Evans will host debate watch parties both nights of the first Democratic debate that will take place in June. Both will pot luck events. Mark your calendars!

    July 4th Sundowner with Fireworks at CCC Kee will send out an email to survey the membership by June 1st, on holding an event this year. In the meantime, Kee will check availability of space @CCC 5pm to 8pm, Thursday, July 4th and make a reservation. A final decision and details will be worked out at June meeting.

    Fund Raisers: Democrats Abroad Guatemala bumper sticker campaign is moving forward. Kee suggested ordering 3 x 11 stickers in batches of 100 and will get price and production data in batches and increments by the next meeting. The message would be the logo of Democrats Abroad Guatemala as it appears on our stationery, e.g., these minutes, and contact information mayadems@yahoo.com email, and www.democratsabroad.org website, as well as, We Vote!

    2019 FPCA promotion Results of May 18th event at Enlaces were disappointing with no voters showing up. John proposed an idea he heard at the DPCA global meeting from Liz Jaff, who heads the DNC’s digital infrastructure division. When asked about a low-cost way of reaching out to voters, Liz said one tool that has been effective is making short 90 second videos in a question and answer format about Democrats Abroad. For DAGT purposes, such a setting would be Kee being asked by a member why they should prepare an FPCA every year. The short video would be posted on our DAGT group FB page, and members would be encouraged to share the video so that it reaches even more people. It can also be posted on Twitter. We could ask Scotney to post and promote the video. Multiple videos could be made around FPCA and GOTV questions.

    DPCA Global Meeting in Washington, DC, May 17 to 19, with Capitol Hill door knock May 20 and 21 John reported some of the details of the meeting. Members are encouraged to go to the

    https://wiki.democratsabroad.org/ wiki site for more details about the business conducted at the meeting, including bylaws changes and resolutions. One resolution that passed was Medicare for All, in support of the several House bills on the topic. Elections were held for International officers, and for Regional Vice Chairs, International Chair, Julia Bryan -- Czech Republic; International Vice Chair, Alex Montgomery --Hong Kong; International Treasurer, Lissette Wright – Canada; International Secretary, Jeffrey Cheng – Sweden; International Legal Counsel,

    Joe Smallhoover – France. (FYI: Juan Pablo Aris will serve as Americas Region Counsel Assistant to Joe).

    At the three Regional Meetings, the following officers were elected for two year terms:

    Americas Regional Vice Chair; Kathy Rothschild -- Costa Rica; Asia Pacific Regional Vice Chair, Kat Allikian -- New Zealand; Europe Middle East and Africa Regional Vice Chair,

    Will Bakker -- Luxembourg

    DAGT June meeting – via Skype June 13th 12:00 noon Guatemala Time.

    Travel Notes: Mary Lou will be in and out. Juan Pablo will be out June 16 to 23. John returns to Guatemala June 18th.

    Adjourned: 1:10pm

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  • published Democrats Abroad - May Updates in News 2019-05-13 11:18:05 -0400

    Democrats Abroad - May Updates

    UPCOMING

    Democrats Abroad Global Meeting

    Global Meeting Prep List

    Agenda for the meeting

    Register for the global meeting (May 17-19)

    Register for door knocks on the Hill (May 20-21)
    Review the list of candidates for the 2019-20 global excom election

    Review proposed charter bylaws amendments and the Bylaws Committee report

    Review the 1p1v Special Purpose committee initial report

    Review proposed resolutions

    Tax Reform Door-Knocking – How can you help?

    The Democrats Abroad Taxation Task Force is back on Capitol Hill on 14, 15 and 16 May putting tax reform for Americans abroad at the center of discussions with Congress. We have meetings scheduled with members in both Houses of Congress and on both sides of politics. We will be discussing the need for residency based taxation and the design elements of the proposed legislation to enact it.

    We need those determined to see this important reform enacted to reach out to their members of Congress this week and next week to demand it. Please consult this grassroots campaign guide for background on our advocacy work and for sample language you can use to call or write to Congress.

    Please send questions to taxationtf@democratsabroad.org


    YOU MAY HAVE MISSED…

    DA Caucus Leaders Meeting

    Topics discussed

    · Black Caucus seeking assistance to run its Facebook page; Will likely re-start its podcast in the near future

    · Progressive Caucus working on Medicare-for-All initiative; Sponsoring resolutions at the DA global meeting

    · Disability Caucus newsletter from last month

    · Women's Caucus discussion on fundraising and promoting an upcoming DA calendar; Seeking women from all global regions to attend its caucus' Planning Session on May 19th.

    · Veterans & Military Families Caucus-in-formation currently awaiting global ExCom approval on its draft Terms of Reference (to become an official global caucus); Currently conducting outreach to recruit DA members in several country committees including France, Australia, Japan, Philippines, Germany, Norway, and Mexico

    · Hispanic Caucus improving the quality of its overall podcast with each new episode; Committed to having more bilingual information and content moving forward

    A FEW WORDS FROM THE DNC

    DNC on Asian Pacific American Heritage Month

    DNC Chair Tom Perez, DNC CEO Seema Nanda, DNC Vice Chair Congresswoman Grace Meng, and DNC AAPI Caucus Chair Bel Leong-Hong released the following statement on Asian Pacific American Heritage Month:

    “This month, we celebrate Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, commemorating the history of Asian American and Pacific Islander communities and their contributions to our country. From the Chinese Americans who fought school segregation in Mississippi and San Francisco and the Japanese Americans who fought against discrimination during World War II to the Filipino Americans who stood side by side with Latino migrant workers during the Delano Grape Strike, AAPIs have been instrumental in our country’s steady march toward equality and justice.

    --

    “Democrats believe that diversity is our country’s greatest strength. As we observe Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, we recommit ourselves to standing alongside our AAPI brothers and sisters who are fighting to create a more inclusive society, and electing leaders who will stand up against Trump’s attempts to tear AAPI communities and families apart.”

    Full text here

    DNC Announces 20th Annual LGBTQ Gala Celebrating 50 Years Since Stonewall

    Every LGBTQ Member of the House Democratic Majority, Queer Eye’s Karamo Brown to attend

    Fresh off helping elect the largest number of LGBTQ members Congress has ever seen, the Democratic National Committee will host its 20th Annual LGBTQ Gala in New York City on June 17. Attending the event will be DNC Chair Tom Perez, along with every LGBTQ member of the new House Democratic majority, and special guest Queer Eye star Karamo Brown, who will highlight the historic progress the LGBTQ community has made since Stonewall 50 years ago.

    Additional speakers and celebrity guests will be announced in the coming weeks.

    “In 2018 we reset expectations across the country of who runs for office and who we support as candidates. In the 116th Congress, there are more women, people of color and members of the LGBTQ community than ever before. Together we are working to ensure that everyone's voice is heard and everyone has access to opportunity. I'm proud to be a part of this new House Majority -- and a co-chair of the Equality Caucus -- as we work towards these goals, “ said Rep. Sharice Davids

    Full text here

    National Finance Chair of the DNC, Henry Munoz will be stepping down

    Full text here

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  • published April Meeting Minutes in News 2019-05-06 00:02:23 -0400

    April Meeting Minutes

    Please see the April Meeting Minutes here

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  • published Updates and Things to Know in News 2019-04-02 15:07:14 -0400

    Updates and Things to Know

    Call to 2019 DPCA Global Meeting

    45 Day Announcement -- April 2, 2019:

    Democrats Abroad will hold our 2019 DPCA Global Meeting on May 17-19, 2019 at the 20 F Conference Center, 20 F St NW, in Washington D.C. (across the street from Union Station). Find out more information about the meeting at the registration page here.

    Schedule:

    The DPCA Global Meeting will be called to order at 9am Friday morning, May 17th and will end at 5pm on Sunday May 19th, Eastern time. A draft agenda will be available soon.

    • The AP Regional Meeting will be held on Friday, May 17th, at 8am Eastern 
    • The Americas Regional Meeting will be held on Saturday, May 18th, at 8am Eastern
    • The EMEA Regional Meeting will be held on Saturday, May 18th, at 8am Eastern.


    Resolutions:
    The deadline for submitting resolutions to be considered at the Global Meeting is 30 days out, or the end of the day (Eastern time) on April 17.  If you have questions or would like to submit a resolution, please write to the Resolutions Committee Chair Susan Vaillant or Resolutions Secretary Will Bakker at resolutions@democratsabroad.org.

    Read more

  • published A Great Annual General Meeting! in News 2019-04-02 14:42:05 -0400

    A Great Annual General Meeting!

    Thank you all for a successful and well attended AGM for Democrats Abroad - Guatemala!

    There were approximately 35 folks in attendance between in-person attendees and proxies.

    We want to congratulations to the election winners and (re-)introduce them to all.

    For elected offices, our new Excom includes:

    • Chair: John Chudy
    • Vice Chair: Mary Lou Ridinger
    • Secretary: Lyn Totino
    • Treasurer: Tom Totino
    • Counsel: Juan Pablo Aris
    • Member at Large: Dave Evans
    • Member at Large: Hyungjoon Jin

     Non-elected officers were ratified by acclamation by the membership in attendance. These officers include:

    • Media Contact & Communications Chair: Scotney Young
    • Issues/Special Events Chair: Kee Evans
    • Membership/Voter Registration Chair: Kee Evans
    • Fundraising Chair: Kee Evans
    • Guatemala City MeetUp Group Chair: (Vacant)
    • Lake Atitlán MeetUp Group Chair: Traci Styner; Madeline Kreider Carlson (Acting) 
    • Occidente MeetUp Group Chair: Sara Castellano; Rachael Shenyo (Acting)

    We also want to thank and recognize members for their financial and/or outstanding volunteer contributions to DAGT during the past year or previous years. We could not make an impact without you!

    Read more

  • published Update on Tax Filing from Abroad Research in News 2019-03-05 17:20:28 -0500

    Update on Tax Filing from Abroad Research

    Dear Global, EMEA, AP and Americas Leaders,

    Democrats Abroad has published its 2019 research on the tax filing and financial account reporting experience of Americans abroad. Click here to download the report entitled "Tax Filing From Abroad: Research on Non-Resident Americans and U.S. Taxation." At this link there is a short summary of the findings.
    Many, many thanks to all who supported the DemsAbroad Taxation Task Force in the distribution of our survey instrument. We are so grateful for your help.


    MEETINGS WITH CONGRESS NEXT WEEK
    Next week a delegation of Tax Task Force members and others are on Capitol Hill to share the research and resume discussions with legislators about residency based taxation. We are, as usual, asking you to encourage your members to call or write to their elected representatives in support of our recommended reforms. This is an up-to-date campaign guide (call scripts, language for letters/emails/postcards, links to find your Congresspeople) you can share with your members that will help them make those calls and write those messages. All outreach is good outreach - in fact it is essential for pushing for reform. Thanks in advance for your help.
    Our first meeting of the week is with the sponsor of the Tax Fairness for Americans Abroad Act, introduced on the last sitting day of the 115th Congress and proposing a switch from our current system of citizenship based taxation to residency based taxation. As you know from our report on the bill, it was not a perfect bill but it serves as a valuable marker that there is sponsorship in Congress for real expat tax reform - and of course it is a wonderful milestone for expat tax advocates who have been working so long and so hard pushing for change. We look forward to providing updates on the bill (the design elements need work for it to attract cosponsors) and the plan by proponents to move it forward.
    Please send through questions and comments to taxationtf@democratsabroad.org.


    Democratically yours,
    DEMOCRATS ABROAD TAXATION TASK FORCE
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  • Message from the US Embassy - Passport Renewal by Mail

    You may qualify to have your passport renewed by mail so you won’t have to go to the embassy. Read more below!

    U. S. Embassy Guatemala City, Guatemala

    February 26, 2019

    Subject: U.S. citizen adult passport renewals by mail

    The U.S. Embassy is pleased to announce a new program that will allow qualified adult U.S. citizens to renew their passports through courier service, eliminating the need to visit the U.S. Embassy. The program begins March 4, 2019.

    We encourage all qualified U.S. citizen adults who need to renew their passports to take advantage of this opportunity.

    Who qualifies for this program:

    Adult U.S. citizens who previously held a U.S passport. Please click here to see if you qualify. This link also contains instructions on mailing in your passport and renewal application.

    Assistance:

    · U.S. Embassy Guatemala City https://gt.usembassy.gov/

    Tel. (502) 2326-4000

    Amcitsguatemala@state.gov

    · State Department - Consular Affairs

    888-407-4747 or 202-501-4444

    · Guatemala Country Information

    · Enroll in Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive security updates

    · Follow us on Facebook and Twitter

    Embajada de Estados Unidos en la Ciudad de Guatemala, Guatemala (26 de febrero, 2019)

    Ubicación: Guatemala

    Situación: Renovación de pasaportes estadounidenses para adultos a través de correspondencia.

    La Embajada de los Estados Unidos se complace en anunciar un nuevo programa que permitirá a ciudadanos estadounidenses adultos calificados a renovar su pasaporte a través de correspondencia, eliminando la necesidad de una visita a la Embajada de los Estados Unidos. El programa inicia el 4 de marzo de 2019.

    Exhortamos a todos los ciudadanos estadounidenses adultos calificados que necesitan renovar sus pasaportes que aprovechen esta oportunidad.

    ¿Quién califica para el programa?

    Ciudadanos estadounidenses adultos que previamente tenían un pasaporte estadounidense. Por favor haga click aquí para saber si usted califica.

    Asistencia:

    · Embajada de Estados Unidos en la Ciudad de Guatemala https://gt.usembassy.gov/es/

    Tel. (502)2326-4000

    Amcitsguatemala@state.gov

    · Asuntos Consulares – Departamento de Estado

    888-407-4747 ó 202-501-4444

    · Información Específica de Guatemala

    · Registrarse para recibir avisos de seguridad a través del Programa STEP (Smart Traveler Enrollment Program, por sus siglas en Inglés)

    · Síganos en Facebook y Twitter

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  • Travel Fund awards for the 2019 Global Meeting in Washington DC

    In 2014, the DPCA voted to adopt a resolution establishing an internal travel fund to provide stipends to members who have shown commitment to Democrats Abroad and who have financial need to offset the costs of travel to our annual Global Meetings. We are a stronger organization when we have diverse in-person participation, and this fund is designed to increase the likelihood of physical attendance by individuals and country committees that have historically been under-represented at our global events due to financial constraints.


    With great thanks to the International Executive Committee, and to everyone who will make donations to the Travel Fund, we are pleased to be able to award three awards of $500 each for 2019.


    If you are able, please be sure to donate to this fund by going to the DONATE page of the DA website and selecting "2019 Travel Fund" as the Contribution Purpose.  Every contribution helps, whether it's $10 or $500.
    We really need your help to keep the Travel Fund going.


    We are now accepting Travel Fund applications for the Global Meeting in Washington DC (17-19 May 2019). All members of Democrats Abroad who have not received a Travel Award in the past five years are eligible to apply.
    Any member of Democrats Abroad may apply. One does not need to be a DPCA Voting Member or hold an elected position to apply, but anyone not in an elected position must provide at least one letter of reference from an elected DPCA member at the time of application.
    Please be sure to pass this information on to those in your membership who otherwise may not consider attending the meeting in Washington due to financial limitations.


    Completed applications are due to the Committee Chair by 10:00 PM EST, 05 March 2019. We aim to notify recipients no later than 6:00 PM EDT 14 March 2019.


    All information, including our Mission and Procedures and the 2019 application form can be found on the Travel Fund page of the Wiki.
    Award recipients will be notified immediately upon selection, but please note that the stipends will be distributed as reimbursements given directly to the recipients during the 2019 Global Meeting in Washington DC. Full in-person attendance, barring a verifiable emergency, is required to receive the award.
    Recipients will be required to submit travel receipts to the International Treasurer and Travel Fund Committee Chair no later than 03 May 2019.

    And please help keep the Travel Fund alive by DONATING.

    Best regards from the Travel Fund Committee,
    Kari Hiepko-Odermann (DA-Ukraine)
    Danielle Stampley (DA-Canada)
    David White (DA-Lion City)
    Kat Allikian (DA-New Zealand), Committee Chair
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  • published Updates from the DNC Chair in News 2019-01-28 21:39:09 -0500

    Updates from the DNC Chair

    Updates from the DNC Chair:

    Last week, longtime Trump adviser Roger Stone was arrested and charged with obstruction, witness tampering, and giving false statements. This indictment is the clearest evidence yet that the Trump campaign was a willing and active participant in a conspiracy with Russia and WikiLeaks to influence the 2016 election. There are more conspirators yet to be held accountable—and at least one of them is named Donald Trump.

    What Was the Point of the Suffering Trump Caused?

    Leaders in Washington finally reached an agreement to reopen the government that does not include funding for Trump’s unnecessary border wall. It’s virtually the same deal Trump should've accepted 35 days ago. So what was the point of all the pain that Donald Trump inflicted on federal workers? What was the point of the missed paychecks, the long lines at food banks, the chaos at our airports, and the sick children without health care? The longest shutdown in American history was avoidable, unnecessary, and disastrous for the country. And the American people know exactly who’s to blame: Donald Trump.

    Thanks to the steadfast leadership of Democrats in Congress, hundreds of thousands of American workers will finally have a reprieve from the suffering Donald Trump has caused. Democrats have been prepared to work on a border security bill from the start of this ordeal; our leaders offered multiple proposals to keep the government open, including a strong bipartisan solution passed by voice vote in the Senate. And yet, Donald Trump and Republicans in Congress failed to do their jobs for 35 days. The American people will hold them accountable, and Democrats will fight tooth and nail to prevent a shutdown from happening again.

    Supporting Our Democratic Mayors

    Last week, I stopped by the National Conference of Democratic Mayors to talk about why their work is so important to our party and our country’s future. Mayors are the tip of the spear. They are on the front lines, leading the fights that matter most to working families across the country.

    As a former local elected official myself, I have an acute appreciation for the work they do. And as DNC Chair, I’m proud that we’ve made critical investments over the last two years to help lift Democratic mayors to historic victories across the country. I look forward to building on our partnership with mayors and ensuring that our communities get the leadership they deserve.

    Standing with the Transgender Community

    Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court announced it would allow the Trump administration to move forward with its ban on most transgender troops serving in the U.S. Armed Forces. This ban is nothing more than bigotry codified into law and an insult to all who have worn our nation’s uniform. Not only does it go against our values as Americans, it also makes us less safe. Make no mistake: Prejudice is not patriotism. And discrimination is not a national security strategy.

    Democrats believe diversity is our nation’s strength.. We believe everyone deserves to be treated with dignity and respect, no matter who you love or how you identify. The brave service members who defend our freedoms should be able live freely. And we will keep fighting for the transgender community and all those who put themselves in harm’s way to protect our country.

    Celebrating Dr. King’s Legacy Through Service

    This past Monday, I joined several DNC staffers and the Thursday Network to assemble blankets and toiletry care packages for those who have unstable living conditions. Working by our side were many furloughed government employees. Even with the stress of not knowing when their next paycheck come from, they were still concerned with helping others. These Americans are public servants to their core.

    The DNC is hosting a food drive with our donations going to The Capital Area Food Bank, the largest organization in the Washington metro area working to solve hunger. Learn more here: https://www.capitalareafoodbank.org/

    Yours,

    Tom
    ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
    Tom Perez
    Chair
    Democratic National Committee

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  • The ONLY time silence helps - 2019 Silent Auction

    “Your silence will not protect you.”
    Audre Lorde, Audre Lorde was an American writer, feminist, womanist, librarian, and civil rights, activist

    In 2018 so many found their voice and your contributions to Democrats Abroad helped amplify these voices. Again, this year at the Global Meeting in Washington, a Silent Auction be organized to bring in additional funds.

    This is the ONLY DA event where silence helps achieve our political goals.

    We are looking for our members to donate items/experiences from their home countries to be auctioned off. Vacation properties, art, books, homestay, language classes, professional services, regifting, upcycling, folk art, jewellery, wine, liquor are some of the popular items from years past.

    If you have a donation, please follow the link below and let us know.

    Many Thanks,

    Kari with Art

    DA Fundraising Co-Chairs

    Use this link to donate! https://goo.gl/forms/Gn3bA1v6aey4qKKp1

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  • URGENT: Photos needed! - DA Equal Rights Amendment Project Needs Your Help!

    Message from the DA Equal Rights Amendment Project Coordinator:

    Happy New Year Everyone!

    There’s been quite a bit of activity on the DA Equal Rights Amendment Project and now need help from all of you. This is your call to action.

    The VA general assembly starts their session on January 9. They would love to have some photos and videos of Americans living abroad that support ERA to use to win over some votes.

    So if you could take a photo holding a sign and/or make a 30-45 second video, that would be appreciated. (Guidelines below).

    Equal Means Equal has offered the Heroica Film company to edit the videos. If possible, they would like by the end of the week so they can put something together for a big event in Richmond on Jan 8. So if you could send something in the next 2 days, that would be great.

    However, if you miss this first deadline, we have also been asked by both Arizona and North Carolina for the same thing and they do not need as soon. Just send as soon as you can.

    So – show your support of women and equal rights by creating a photo and/or video. Send the photo and video links to me at era@democratsabroad.org

    THANK YOU for your help!

    Shari

    Shari Temple

    DA ERA Project Coordinator

    Democrats Abroad

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    ERA Photo Guidelines

    Photo Guidelines:

    Make sign on A4 or 8.5x11 paper

    Please include on the sign “American living in {country name} or {city name}” along with some support for ERA.

    Take photo with sign with your face showing

    Photos of your kids holding the sign is also good – if you are ok with the photo on the internet

    If you are from one of the 13 states (AR, AL, AZ, GA, NC, SC, UT, FL, MS, MO, OK, UT, LA) that have not ratified the ERA, if you could do a second sign and photo replacing “American” with your state, like Oklahoman, that would be great.

    Please send photo to ERA@democratsabroad.org

    Text ideas:

    Please vote for the ERA

    Please ratify the ERA

    I support Women

    I support Women’s rights

    Equal rights for All

    Women need equal rights

    Women deserve equal rights

    ERA NOW

    ERA Video Guidelines

    Video Guidelines:

    Consider wearing something or standing/seating by something that shows you are living abroad – for example a foreign newspaper, translation dictionary, map, typical item from country, or outside at a recognizable place in your country. However, don’t worry about it – just a blank wall is fine.

    Do NOT wear or say anything partisan. Almost all Dems support ERA so trying to win the Rep vote.

    Please show some passion but avoid/limit profanity.

    Start with “I’m an American living in {country name}”. You can also use city name if it is one all Americans would recognize, like London, Paris, Tokyo.

    If you live in a country that has equal rights for women in the constitution, especially if in some non-European country, mention that.

    If you are from one of the 13 states (AR, AL, AZ, GA, NC, SC, UT, FL, MS, MO, OK, UT, LA) that have not ratified the ERA, you may want to mention that. Note that Virginia, North Carolina, and Arizona are the top 3 targets right now.

    For Virginia, you may want to call out Speaker Cox since he is the current ‘gatekeeper’ that could cause it to stall and never get to the Virginia House floor.

    Ask for ERA support.

    Keep video to less than 60 seconds, ideally 45 seconds.

    If you post the video on Facebook or Instagram, please add hashtags #DAforERA and #VAratifyERA

    Send a link to the video to era@democratsabroad.org

    Text ideas:

    I’m an American living in {country}. I have more rights as a woman here than I do back home. Please support the ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment. Women around the world care about what happens in the United States. Please vote for the ERA.

    I’m an American living in {country}. 85% of the countries in the world have equal rights for women in their constitution. (country} is one of them. I want to see my home country one as well. Please vote for the equal rights amendment.

    I’m an American living in {country}. In 2018, I was happy when I learned Illinois became the 37th state to ratify the ERA. My hope for 2019 is that Virginia becomes number 38. Please support the ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment.

    I’m an American living in {country}. As a man, I care about women’s rights. I hope you do as well. Please pass the Equal Rights Amendment.

    I’m an American living in {country}. When I recently learned that the US still does not have equal rights for women in our Constitution, I was shocked. How can that be? Surely one of the 13 states that have not ratified it will all do so this year. It is 2019! It’s past time. Please vote for the Equal Rights Amendment.

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  • published Tax Fairness for Americans Abroad Act in News 2018-12-21 12:11:21 -0500

    Tax Fairness for Americans Abroad Act

    Message from DA TAXATION TASK FORCE: 

    Yesterday afternoon, in the midst of all sorts of border wall funding related chaos across Capitol Hill, Rep. George Holding (R-NC) introduced the Tax Fairness for Americans Abroad Act HR 7358 on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives. The bill would enact a switch from our current system of citizenship based taxation to residency based taxation, a move that would benefit nearly all Americans living abroad. 
    This is our website post announcing the bill. It includes a link to the bill. Please share it with your members and on your social media platforms.
    Though the bill is not perfect, it is a milestone in our expat tax advocacy work; we now have a legislative framework for refining and clarifying work in the 116th Congress on a bill implementing residency based taxation that will satisfy our key ambitions, including: accommodating of all Americans abroad, easy to transition into, protected from abuse by tax evaders and bad actors, and revenue-neutral to the federal government.
    As our statement says, we have liaised continuously with House Democrats on the development and introduction of the bill and we look forward to picking this up with them again in January.
    Please send comments and questions to taxationtf@democratsabroad.org.
    Thanks for your support for the work of the DA Taxation Task Force.
    Best wishes for the season,
    DA TAXATION TASK FORCE
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  • "From Tom's Desk" - Message from DNC Chair Tom Perez

    alt

    Preparing for 2020

    This past weekend, the DNC’s Rules and Bylaws committee met in Puerto Rico to design the most open and transparent nominating process in our party’s history — and we’re very excited with the outcome.

    Our North Star heading into the 2020 election cycle has been and will continue to be making sure every candidate gets a fair shake. We want our nominating process to be a showcase of the exciting ideas and extraordinary talent within our party so that Democrats across the country can decide who should be our nominee. That way, we are in the strongest, most united position to take on Trump and win back the White House.

    Republicans are Degrading our Democracy

    Despite historic Democratic wins across the country, Republicans are dead-set on destroying the integrity of our electoral process by trying to cling onto power rather than accepting the will of the voters.

    In Wisconsin, Republicans are rushing to force through legislation that undermines policies that voters supported, issues including Affordable Care Act, SNAP benefits, Medicaid, and early voting limits. These bills also lay the groundwork for the Republican-controlled legislature to restrict the powers of incoming Attorney General Josh Kaul and Governor Tony Evers, dishonoring the important tradition of a peaceful transition of power.

    In Michigan, Republicans are hard at work crafting a plan to strip the powers of the incoming secretary of state to enforce the state’s campaign finance laws, limit the incoming attorney general’s ability to act on lawsuits involving the state, and sink proposals to raise the minimum wage.

    And as if these blatant power grabs were not enough, there’s substantial evidence of potential election fraud in North Carolina that throws the sanctity of the ballot box into question.

    Last week, North Carolina voters learned of serious concerns in the 9th Congressional District when the State Board of Elections unanimously agreed to delay certifying the election of Mark Harris to Congress. According to affidavits, Bladen County residents had people arrive on their doorsteps asking to collect their absentee ballot. In some instances, these individuals offered to fill the ballots out themselves or failed to seal the envelope or collect a signature.

    While Republicans played politics with false, unsubstantiated claims of voter fraud in Arizona and Florida, they’ve ignored this serious evidence of election tampering — only because it appears they benefited from the fraud.

    If the GOP is seriously concerned about the integrity of our elections, they will respect the outcome of elections – no matter who wins. Voters have spoken: They want Democrats in charge. For the sake of our democracy, Republicans should stand down and stop engaging in these dangerous political games.

    Trump’s Failing Us on Jobs

    Today, we saw more evidence that the Republican economic agenda is a colossal failure.

    The government’s job report demonstrates once again that there is more we must do to create good-paying jobs and pull workers off the sidelines. With lower-than-expected job growth, more proposed tax cuts for the wealthy, and a never-ending assault on Americans’ access to health care, Donald Trump and Republicans have kicked working families to the curb.

    It’s clear the economy still has room to grow, but we must ensure that growth benefits American families. That’s why millions of voters sent a loud and clear message to this administration in last month’s election: Our leaders should fight for all of us, not just those who line their pockets. When Democrats are in charge, our economy grows faster and hardworking Americans have more opportunities.

    Celebrating the Life of George H.W. Bush

    This week, we mourned the loss of an American patriot and public servant. George H.W. Bush paired his profound sense of personal responsibility with honesty, gentility, and hard work.

    In his inaugural address, he said that great nations, like great men, must keep their word. He stated that the American people did not send politicians to Washington to bicker. The American people ask their leaders to rise above the merely partisan. Throughout his life and career, President Bush embodied that sense of duty and commitment to bettering our country – whether it was fighting for Americans with disabilities, ensuring clear air for future generations, or bringing a peaceful end to the Cold War.


    (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

    President Bush and First Lady Barbara Bush showed us that character and integrity must never become casualties of partisan politics. Our hearts go out to the entire Bush family and their friends as they mourn his passing and celebrate his historic life and legacy.

    Thank you always for your continued support of the Democratic Party.

    Yours,

    Tom
    ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
    Tom Perez
    Chair
    Democratic National Committee

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  • published Taxation Task Force Chair in News 2018-12-03 20:44:06 -0500

    Taxation Task Force Chair

    Taxation Task Force Chair

    Written and Posted by Carmelan Polce
    November 21, 2018

    Democrats Abroad has written to Senator Orrin Hatch, Chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, Senator Ron Wyden, Ranking Democrat on the Senate Finance Committee, Rep Kevin Brady, Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, and Rep Richard Neal, Ranking Democrat of the House Ways and Means Committee, asking for our transition tax reform recommendations to be included in any technical corrections bill moved in the lame duck session to remedy serious problems arising from the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act rushed through Congress in December of last year. Click here to download the letter.

    Our letter goes on to ask for their support for an urgent switch from citizenship based taxation to residency based taxation (RBT).

    We continue to monitor developments in work by Rep George Holding on RBT and to support that work by educating Congress about the need for expat tax reform and the merits of a switch from citizenship-based taxation to RBT. Our fervent hope is that Holding's year-long work will result in a bill introduced before the end of the 115th Congress. Even though the chance of the bill progressing to a vote is very slim, it will be a major milestone to have an RBT bill to work with going forward.

    The Democrats Abroad Taxation Task Force is very much looking forward, in the next year, to reaching out to the 116th Congress, so many members of which have the overseas vote to thank for their seats. We will make a special effort to engage with them and continue to persuade the all-important tax writing committees about the need for urgent action on expat tax reform.

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