News

In July —

In this Issue –

Events:

  • July 4th Picnic in Graz
  • 4th of July in the Park – Vienna
  • Young Dems Open Mic
  • Salzburg Meet-Up
  • Linz Meet-Up
  • Solidarity Sunday

Issues & Actions:

  • DA Austria Sponsors Slovakia
  • Gearing up for 2020 
    • Voter Registration Drives
    • DA Global Convention
  • Global Black Caucus Summer Events
  • Global Women's Caucus – Candidate Virtual Town Hall
  • Are you waiting for your CARES Act aid payment?

Reviews:

  • DAA at Black Lives Matter March
  • Drag Queen Bingo Fundraiser Brings the Coin
  • Dialing for Democracy Review
  • Solidarity Sundays 34: Meet Our DNC Delegates & Police Reform

 

Our Executive Committee meetings are usually held on the second Wednesday of the month. However, our next meeting will be held online on: Wednesday, July 15, 2020, at 7 p.m.Members are welcome to join us at the meetings. Please contact Jennifer at chair@democratsabroad.atfor the link. 

DAA is making a strong effort to include in our monthly newsletter all the information you need to stay up to date in order to avoid the flood of emails that occurs in an election year. By sending you fewer emails, we hope you will read those you receive. Thanks for reading!

 

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Events:

 

4th of July in the Park – Vienna 

July 4, 4:00-9:00p.m. 

4th of July Picnic in Graz 

July 4, 5p.m.

Young Dems Open Mic Night 

July 8, 7:30p.m.

Salzburg Meet-Up 

July 17, 5:30-8:30 p.m.

Linz Meet-Up 

July 18, 5:30-8:30 p.m.

Solidarity Sundays: Democracy is Action 

July 26, 4:00-6:00 p.m.

 


Issues & Actions:

DA Austria Sponsors Slovakia 

Democrats Abroad now allows for compliant country committees to “sponsor” countries that don’t have a country committee. Through the sponsorship DA Austria will provide Slovakia with essential voting information services, invitations to cross border events, and our monthly newsletter. 

The goal is to provide DA members in Slovakia with all the benefits of being a DA member. We’d like to heartily welcome you and look forward to meeting you in person. Until then, please follow us on our DA Austria website, Facebook Page, and Twitter and Instagram at #DemsAustria.

Vitajte!

 

Gearing up for 2020 —

Voter Registration Drive in Graz, Innsbruck, Linz, Vorarlberg & Vienna! 

We’ll be registering Americans to vote at various farmers markets and other venues over the summer. Please be sure to stop by and say hello and bring a friend to get them ready for November’s election. 

Feel the need to take action? Let us know if you can help us for a few hours at a voter registration table!

Americans living overseas must request their ballot in every calendar year they want to vote — yes, even if it’s normally sent to you automatically. Go to Vote From Abroad and request your ballot today and make sure to request it be sent to you by email!

Don’t procrastinate — ballots will be sent September 19. The time to request is now!

 

DA Global Convention

DPCA (Democratic Party Committee Abroad) representatives – these are the Chair, Vice Chair and voting reps from each country committee – met on Saturday, June 6 and Sunday, June 7 to elect three Global DNC members, three At-Large Sanders delegates, one Sanders alternate delegate and one Biden alternate, and one PLEO (Party Leaders and Elected Officials).

We also approved the final draft of the DA platform – you can read it here: democratsabroad.org/platform 

 

Global Black Caucus Summer Events

The events are also on our Facebook page.

Check out the latest poems from our Laureates:

– Angela Fobbs, Chair, Global Black Caucu #BlackLivesMatter

 

Global Women's Caucus – Candidate Virtual Town Hall

This month, the Candidate Information Action Team is excited to preview an upcoming series of events: our Candidate Virtual Town Halls! The team has been working behind the scenes to connect with campaigns across the U.S. to bring these fabulous women virtually to your screen. Keep an eye on your inboxes and our social media pages to hear more about the candidates who will be joining us and how to attend these virtual events. 

Separately, our Women to Winseries features two Iowans this month: Theresa Greenfield is running to represent Iowa in the Senate, and Rita Hart is running to serve Iowa’s 2nd Congressional District in the House.

– Kaitlynn Newcomb, GWC Editor for Candidate Information 

READ MORE

 

Are you waiting for your CARES Act aid payment?  

More than ten weeks have passed since Congress passed the CARES Act, providing, among other things, aid to low income Americans to supplement their household income during the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown. According to the House Ways and Means Committee, the IRS has sent out nearly 160 million Economic Impact Payments (EIPs) – some by direct deposit (120 million), some by check sent by traditional mail (35 million), and some by mailed Visa debit card (4 million).

If you are eligible for an EIP but have not received it, it might still be coming.

– Carmelan Polce, Taxation Task Force

READ MORE

 


Reviews:

DAA at Black Lives Matter March

On Thursday, June 4 about 20 DA Austria members marched behind our Democrats Believe... banner and joined the ±50,000 marchers at the Black Lives Matter protest in Vienna. Holding an American flag above the crowd, DAA Global Black Caucus Chair, Faith Hall-Herbold, was interviewed by multiple news outlets. The most frequent question was, “Have you ever experienced police brutality in Vienna? And What do you say to someone who says all lives matter?” We’ll be discussing these questions and how we talk about race at our September Solidarity Sundays on September 26. 

 


Drag Queen Bingo Fundraiser Brings the Coin

Cherry Poppins, Drag Queen extraordinaire, served up the glamour in the fight for democracy Saturday, June 13. Joining from New York City, Cherry headlined the LGBT+ Caucus‘ fierce fundraiser on behalf of Democrats Abroad. Over 50 DA members from Europe, the Middle East, and Africa joined the online event. As people filled in bingo cards, Cherry entranced with show-stopping tunes, and bestowed witty repartee to all as well as prizes to three lucky members.

Juan Cerda, DA Austria Vice-Chair and LGBT Caucus leader, announced that the event raised $1,600 for DA’s important get-out-the-vote work. “It was an exceptional evening, with a diversity of LGBT+ families and allies coming together to celebrate and have fun playing bingo with our hostess Drag Queen. Cherry brought a lot of joy and laughter to our effort to register Americans to vote back home.”

You can catch Cherry‘s rendition of Liza Minnelli‘s “Maybe This Time” here:  https://youtu.be/xgWedIGYIX0. The New Yorker encouraged Americans living abroad to vote this November. In the spirit of Cherry, we urge you to register and vote from abroad so in November we can say, “GOP, sashay away!”

—Tanya Lolonis, DA Austria Solidarity Sundays Co-Chair

 

 

Dialing for Democracy 

We had 131 callers from 12 countries participating. In total, callers made 8,316 calls (!) to DA members worldwide between 9 a.m.-9 p.m. CEST on June 14 to remind them to request their absentee ballots. Many thanks to those of you who participated and/or encouraged members in your country committee to call.

Prior to the event, we asked callers to commit to making a certain number of calls, and to also ask friends and family to sponsor their calls (just like a fun run, except instead of running a 10K, participants were making X number of calls). We collectively raised over $18,000 for the DPCA through callers’ sponsorships. As of June 19, just over $10,000 has already been donated through the DA donation page, and we are following up with other sponsors to ask them to make their pledged donations. The money will help keep DA’s worldwide voter outreach going strong through November! Thank you to all who sought pledges or donated. If you’d like to make a contribution, please do so here: https://www.democratsabroad.org/d4d_flagday_callathon_fundraiser

– Candice Kerestan, Chair DA Germany

 

 

Solidarity Sundays 34: Meet Our DNC Delegates & Police Reform

Solidarity Sundays returned to Amerlinghaus after three months in cyberspace! We didn‘t cut the internet cord entirely: Vienna welcomed attendees joining us remotely from around Austria, Europe and Africa.

Democrats Abroad is "sending" a 26-member delegation to the Democratic National Convention in August. They will be raising our profile within the Democratic party with the message that DA voters are the margin of victory in close races. We met Biden delegates Miguel Madrigal (Costa Rica), Marisa Grimes (Rwanda), Onelica Andrade (Belgium) and Platform member Heather Stone (Israel). Sanders Delegate Ty Cofield joined us from Poland. The delegates were interviewed by our own Biden delegate, Juan Cerda, DA Austria’s Vice-Chair and LGBT Caucus head. They shared stories how they joined Democrats Abroad — and how two of them are busy building country committees and growing DA‘s reach into Eastern Europe and Africa. They are the youngest and most diverse DNC delegation ever to represent overseas Democratic voters. The future looks bright.

As Black Lives Matter protests continue in the States, Solidarity Sundays surveyed the architecture of policing practices and lack of accountability. We looked at two, big buckets of solutions to police violence. One bucket involves reducing the power of police by managing how they use force and police union contracts. The other involves shrinking their role: since only 5% of all arrests are for violent crime, activists call for offloading the majority of budget resources to other places.

Attendees learned how to press for action from local leaders back home using online tools developed by Campaign Zero. *You can change bad policy yourself in under 5 minutes.* Visit 8cantwait.org to demand action from your mayor, then visit joincampaignzero.org to demand your representatives vote for reform.

—Tanya Lolonis, DA Austria Solidarity Sundays Co-Chair

 

Request Your Absentee Ballot!

Have you requested your ballot yet? visit votefromabroad.org and make sure that you’re all set to receive your ballot since COVID-19 has affected mail service to the US.

And while you’re there, check out their State Voting Guide to find your local election information and stay on top of deadlines and submission rules for this year’s elections.

Also, our VfA Voter Help Desk maintains an extensive FAQ resource. If you can’t find the answer you need there, you are welcome to submit your question to the VfA team of experts and you receive a reply, usually within just a few hours.

Registering to vote now is the number one thing you can do to help save our democracy. Please do it today!

 

Thanks for reading.

Keep up with our events over the summer on our website or on Facebook. See you in September for our next issue!



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Austria

Who We Are 

Democrats Abroad is the official arm of the Democratic Party representing Americans who live outside the US. Our mission is to to provide Americans living in Austria a voice in our government and to elect Democrats by mobilizing the overseas vote.

 

Our Caucuses

We have several active caucuses that focus on specific progressive issues/groups:

  • Black Caucus
  • LGBTQ+
  • Progressive Caucus
  • Solidarity Sundays
  • Women’s Caucus
  • Youth Caucus

 

Our Activities

These range from monthly get-togethers, lectures, panel discussions, film screenings, and guest speakers to political rallies and marches!  And more…

 

Are you an American in Austria? Become a DA member!

We keep you informed.

 

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In June —

 

In This Issue –

Events:

  • #BlackLivesMatter Demonstration
  • Phone Bank Training
  • Pride Event – Drag Queen Bingo
  • Meet & Greet – Getting Acquainted in the Provinces
  • Linz Meet-Up
  • Salzburg Meet-Up
  • Solidarity Sunday
  • July 4th Picnic in the Park

Issues & Actions:

  • Asian American & Pacific Island Caucus
  • Homeless in the Pandemic
  • Gearing up for 2020 
    • Summer Internships
    • Regional Delegates & DNC Members
    • Voting News

Reviews:

  • David Shor and Robert Reich Webinars
  • Cleve Jones Webinar 
  • Instagram Account

 

Our Executive Committee meetings are held on the second Wednesday of the month. The next meeting will be held online on: Wednesday, June 10, 2020, at 7 p.m.Members are welcome to join us at the meetings. Please contact Jennifer at chair@democratsabroad.at for the link. 

DAA is making a strong effort to include in our monthly newsletter all the information you need to stay up to date in order to avoid the flood of emails that occurs in an election year. By sending you fewer emails, we hope you will read those you receive. Thanks for reading!

 

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Events:

#BlackLivesMatter Demonstration l June 4, 5:00-8:00 p.m.

Phone Bank Training l June 4, CANCELLED for the demonstration!

 

Phone Bank Training l June 8, 4:00-6:00 p.m.

 

Pride Event – Drag Queen Bingo l June 13, 8:00 p.m.

 

Meet & Greet – Getting Acquainted in the Provinces l June 18, 5:00–6:00 p.m.

 

Linz Meet-Up l June 20, 5:30-8:30 p.m.

 

Salzburg Meet-Up l June 26, 5:30-8:30 p.m.

 

Solidarity Sundays: Meet & Greet your Delegates for DNC 2020 l June 28, 4:00-6:00 p.m.

 

Picnic in the Park l July 4, 1:00-4:00p.m. 

 


Issues & Actions:

Help Shape DA's Asian American & Pacific Island Caucus

You can get involved on the global, country, or local level. We are working on establishing this new caucus and are looking for individuals interested in shaping the direction of this caucus and organizing in their countries and chapters. If you’re interested, please fill out the form below and join us on our next call! https://forms.gle/7BhqZXw2e3LFtgdp9

 

Homeless in the Pandemic

As a social worker for homeless people in the midst of the Coronavirus pandemic, I'm often asked what it's like for my clients. There are three answers to that question: 

First, for people who are eligible for homelessness services, a truly wide and fairly high-quality network of help and housing exists. These are the adequately funded social structures that we so painfully miss in the US. 

— Antje Lewis, DAA member and Founding Mother

READ MORE



Gearing up for 2020 – 

Summer Communications & Marketing Internships

Democrats Abroad Austria is looking for dedicated interns for its communications and marketing committee. From content planning and social media management, to press outreach and structuring ad campaigns, Democrats Abroad is the perfect place to gain your first work experience and affect political change. Are you interested in U.S. electoral politics and looking for a summer internship? Apply at comms@democratsabroad.at

 

DA Delegates & DNC Members

The Global Presidential Primary

In March, Democrats Abroad members around the world voted in the Global Presidential Primary which determined the number of pledged delegates for candidates that crossed the 15% threshold. Bernie Sanders received 57.9% of the vote for 9 pledged delegates and Joe Biden received 22.7% of the vote for 4 pledged delegates.

The DA Regional Conventions

On Saturday, May 16, 2020, more than 200 electors logged onto their computers from around Europe, the Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) in our first fully online regional convention.

READ MORE

 

 

Voting News 

Did you know that US overseas voters are legally required to request their ballot every calendar year they want to vote? In case of a recount, ballots without a current fpca  form could be discarded. Be sure to secure your ballot  — go to votefromabroad.org and re-register today!

 

👉 Phonebanking thousands of US voters across Austria is underway, to make sure those requests are in. Want to help make calls? Get started with phonebanking here. Or, join us at our online Training Session on June 8 at 4:00p.m.

👉 Need to register/request a ballot yourself? Go to www.votefromabroad.org.

👉 Do you have friends and family living overseas who might not have registered in 2020? Send them to www.votefromabroad.org. Friends make sure friends vote!

Please like, follow, and share DA Austria politics, activism, and elections news you can use on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

Want to volunteer? Click here.

To donate to DA Austria: Click here.

THANK YOU for your support!

 


Reviews:

David Shor & Robert Reich Webinars

One of the many benefits that being a Democrats Abroad member provides is the fantastic guests that speak to our members. Anyone interested in hearing David Shor’s thoughts on the upcoming election and the best messaging to use to win voters will want to watch the recording. Robert Reich joined the webinar speaker series on May 29 and was heard by more than one thousand people around the world! Check it out here

 

Solidarity Sundays #33:  “Not My First Pandemic“

“The United States has changed profoundly in the last three months,”  began human rights activist Cleve Jones. We face a national crisis comparable to the Great Depression and World War Two. This time, however, the leadership to meet the challenge is invisible.

Joining the May 31 Solidarity Sundays meet-up online from Northern California, Jones related his experience of the HIV pandemic in the 1980s to highlight similarities with Covid-19 today. 

READ MORE

 

It’s all happening at #demsaustria

Have you visited Democrats Austria’s Instagram page recently? There is lots of interesting content, including answers to frequently asked voter questions, voting news, quizzes, and more. Be sure to visit today and don’t forget to follow us at #demsaustria!

 

Thanks for reading. 

See you in July for our next issue!

 


Solidarity Sundays #33: “Not My First Pandemic“

“The United States has changed profoundly in the last three months,”  began human rights activist Cleve Jones. We face a national crisis comparable to the Great Depression and World War Two. This time, however, the leadership to meet the challenge is invisible.

Joining the May 31 Solidarity Sundays meet-up online from Northern California, Jones related his experience of the HIV pandemic in the 1980s to highlight similarities with Covid-19 today. First, he explained, there was no “gay virus,” and there is no “Chinese virus” — everyone on the planet is effected by Covid. Second, both diseases revealed inequities in our culture. AIDS began among gay men in coastal cities, then moved swiftly south. In Alabama, Mississippi, and Georgia, men of color succumbed in higher numbers than white men because they had poor healthcare and weakened immunity. Covid’s pattern:  while 30% of Georgians are African American, they represent 55% of Covid deaths.

Another worrisome parallel:  disinformation campaigns. In the 1980s, a vocal minority of HIV denialists grabbed at conspiracy theories to avoid changing their behavior. Ultimately, treatment, not behavior modification, reduced the AIDS death rate. Today, wearing masks has become a culture war statement; Jones points to this to predict that only development of treatment will vanquish Covid.

Attendees wanted to know whether HIV activism tactics are relevant in today‘s political and health crisis. ACT UP’s mixture of civil disobedience and street theater pressured pharmaceutical companies to develop HIV treatment. Those tactics are “absolutely useful”  today, Jones said. Shutting down airports, filing lawsuits, registering voters, letters to editors, being smart with social media — “they all work.”

Jones concluded on a personal note. “I have felt despair several times.”  He was a queer, suicidal 15-year-old when gay liberation — “learning there were people like me” — saved his life. Activism helped him cope in the dark days after the murder of his friend and mentor, Harvey Milk. And when gay men and Jones himself were dying of AIDS, ACT UP secured medical trials that saved his life. “Now,” he said, “it‘s time to save the life of our country.”  Whatever your gift — connections, skills, time, money — bring it to this struggle to defeat Republicans in November. “And bring joy. We‘re in this struggle for the long haul — you need joy to sustain you.

  • Solidarity Sundays and Democrats Abroad’s LGBTQ Caucus co-hosted the  webinar. Eighty DA members from throughout Europe attended and contributed $1,000 to DA’s Get Out the Vote work. Stay tuned for the recording.
  • America is hurting. Help register the 6 million Americans living abroad to vote in November by phone banking from home. Email:  solidaritysundays@democratsabroad.at
  • Check out this short BBC video of Cleve‘s monumental “Names“ Quilt:

https://www.bbc.com/news/av/stories-51969409/the-aids-quilt-that-showed-the-scale-of-suffering?fbclid=IwAR2h68-rnEfIrMcrPseUI95L0r7ZZHJR1KRBNAyVhAfgQB9HKlDjugHql54

 


Results from the Regional Conventions

DA Delegates & DNC Members – 

The Global Presidential Primary

In March, Democrats Abroad members around the world voted in the Global Presidential Primary which determined the number of pledged delegates for candidates that crossed the 15% threshold. Bernie Sanders received 57.9% of the vote for 9 pledged delegates and Joe Biden received 22.7% of the vote for 4 pledged delegates.

 

The DA Regional Conventions

On Saturday,May 16, 2020, more than 200 electors logged onto their computers from around Europe, the Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) in our first fully online regional convention. Over the course of the day, these “electors” represented their country committee’s members and voted for the delegates who will represent EMEA in the 2020 Democrats Abroad delegation to the National Convention. The people elected to represent the EMEA region come from many countries across the region and represent the diversity of our party and our organization. Democrats Abroad Austria is very proud that both our current Vice Chair, Juan Cerda, and our former Chair, Katie Solon, won their elections for delegate and DNC member respectively.

 

The DA Global Convention

On the weekend of June 6-7, DA Austria’s three DA voting representatives will be again joining other DA leaders online to vote for the remaining global delegate positions and DNC members. We will also be voting on resolutions for the DA 2020 Platform. 

 

The Americas and the Asia Pacific Regions also held their regional conventions on the same weekend. Here are the results of the elections in all regions:

Regional At-large Delegates:

Americas

  • Timothy Ellis (CA), Sanders
  • Miguel Madrigal (CR), Biden

Asia Pacific

  • John Baumlin (JP), Sanders

Europe Middle East & Africa

  • Farid Ben Amor (CH), Sanders
  • Onelica Andrade (BE), Biden
  • Juan Cerda (AT), Biden
  • Anne Dlugosz (FR), Sanders
  • Marisa Grimes (RW), Biden
  • Diego Rivas (DE), Sanders

2020-2024 Regional DNC Members

  • Aaron Kruse (CN)
  • Katie Solon (DE)
  • Ken Sherman (CA)

Platform Committee Members

Americas

  • Rachel Eugster (CA)
  • Sam Goodman (CR)

Asia Pacific

  • Kent Getsinger (AU)
  • Kiyoko Ayukawa (JP)

EMEA

  • Heather Stone (IL)
  • Nathan Zaccai (UK)

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Homeless in the Pandemic 

As a social worker for homeless people in the midst of the Coronavirus pandemic, I'm often asked what it's like for my clients. There are three answers to that question: 

First, for people who are eligible for homelessness services, a truly wide and fairly high-quality network of help and housing exists. These are the adequately funded social structures that we so painfully miss in the US. 

Also, in general, shelters here are light years better than the overcrowded and underfunded facilities we generally know back home. Check out what's offered by the city of Vienna, for example: http://www.wien.gv.at/sozialinfo/content/en/10/SearchResults.do?keyword=Accommodation+for+homeless+persons. During the pandemic, the city and service providers have instituted comprehensive measures to ensure that everybody in the shelters stays safe. Where I work, not one of the three dozen men who live in the facility has become noticeably ill, nor has any of the staff. Nothing's perfect – for example only now is facility-wide virus screening beginning – so I do often worry. But if I were working the cash register at a grocery store, I'd be much more worried.  

Second, if you're homeless but not eligible for temporary housing or regular emergency shelters because you're not Austrian or not a "settled" foreigner ... well, you're in trouble. Then you must rely on underfunded and overcrowded emergency shelters that don't look so very different to those in the US, or on the spacious parks. For women, this often means trading sex for a space to sleep. In the winter, however, the city does provide almost a thousand extra emergency beds, known as the "Winterpaket." Every April these emergency shelters close, but this year, they remain open and people there can stay all day, not just at night. I had to visit one such shelter with a client a few weeks ago and I must say, I was shocked. The resources for Corona protection were lacking, and compliance with social distancing was really not in evidence, neither by the overworked staff nor by the clients. I called it a ticking time bomb and indeed, just a few days ago we read about it in the news: homeless shelter with some 200 people under quarantine. I hate being right. http://kurier.at/chronik/wien/corona-alarm-obdachlosenunterkunft-in-wien-gesperrt/400844672

Third, even with such relatively good social policy, too many people are sleeping rough, are hungry and are ill without health insurance. If you want to help, try these organizations:

— Antje Lewis, DAA member and Founding Mother

 


In May –

In This Issue –

Events:

  • Phone Banking Training
  • Women’s Caucus - Legalize Equality
  • Young Dems Movie Night
  • Cleve Jones Webinar
  • Pride Event – Drag Queen Bingo

Issues & Actions:

  • DAA Video! Why I'll Vote in November
  • New Asian American/Pacific Islander Caucus
  • Rapid Response – Save the USPS
  • 2020 DA Platform
  • Are you on Instagram?
  • Gearing up for 2020 –
    • Breaking the Bubble
    • Phone Banking
    • Volunteers Needed 

Reviews:

  • Pub Quiz
  • Quarantini
  • The CARES Act - What’s In It?

Our Executive Committee meetings are held on the second Wednesday of the month. The next meeting will be held online on: Wednesday, May 13, 2020, at 7 p.m. Members are welcome to join us at the meetings. Please contact Jennifer at chair@democratsabroad.at for the link. 

DAA is making a strong effort to include in our monthly newsletter all the information you need to stay up to date in order to avoid the flood of emails that occurs in an election year. By sending you fewer emails, we hope you will read those you receive. Thanks for reading!

 

Follow us on:

  

D O N A T E 

 

 


Events:

Phone Bank Training

May 18. 6:30 p.m.

 

Legalize Equality - Film Screening & Discussion

May 26, 12 p.m.-1:30 p.m. 

 

Young Dems Movie Night

May 28, 7 p.m.-9 p.m.

 

Sol Sun & The LGBTI Caucus Host Cleve Jones 

Sunday, May 31, 5 p.m. CEST/11 a.m. EST 

 

Pride Event – Drag Queen Bingo

June 13, TBA 

 


Issues & Actions:

 

Why I'll Vote in November

DA Austria members got together after our last Solidarity Sundays meeting to create some social media content for our 2020 get out the vote effort. Take a look at the video! Would you like to participate or have an idea for our next video? Contact Tanya Lolonis at solidaritysundays@democratsabroad.at

 

New Democrats Abroad Caucus

An Asian American/Pacific Islander Caucus is being formed at the DA Global level. Please email Jennifer at chair@democratsabroad.at if you are interested in helping with the AAPI global caucus from Austria. All are welcome.

To find out more about Democrats Abroad Global Caucuses and to join, please see here.

 

Help Save the US Postal Service 

Rapid Response Needed: Destroy the Post Office, and you destroy democracy. We must take action to save the USPS, here, and to learn how to use ResistBot at the same time. “Simply put, if you hate the Post Office then you hate America.... We need to all lean on our members of Congress — regardless of party — to lean on the White House to save our Post Office before September.”

 

2020 Democrats Abroad Platform

The working draft of the 2020 Democrats Abroad Platform is now available (click here to download and open the PDF file): Draft - 2020 Platform. The platform expresses DA’s political values and policy goals, and is the result of over 10,000 comments submitted over the past six months. Please provide YOUR comment here: Platform Feedback Form. Please respond by May 15, ideally earlier, as electors will vote on the platform during the DA Regional Conventions (May 16) and Global Convention (June 6).

 

Are You on Instagram? 

Follow us on Instagram @demsaustria for easy reminders and updates all in one place: from events to electoral news and information on how to vote from abroad!

   

 

Gearing Up for 2020 –

Breaking the Bubble Lots of Americans living abroad don’t know they have a legal right to vote or that they must re-register in every calendar year. We phone bank to remind people to register and request their ballot because this is the most effective way to reach our members (see below).

But what about all those other Americans overseas who are embarrassed to say they are from the US, horrified by the president’s actions and statements, and don’t realize they have the power to enact change?

We want to break the information bubble. Help us reach out to American voters by telling your friends and family, colleagues and acquaintances, heck, even the American in line next to you at the market, to go to votefromabroad.org and register to vote. It’s non-partisan, takes 5 minutes, and there is a chat box to answer any questions. 

Why? Because voting is a civic duty. 

 

Phone Banking We’ve got a new country campaign up to reach all our members before summer and remind them to register and request their ballot. Will you join our team of phone banking volunteers and get out the vote in 2020?

You know how important a huge Democratic turnout will be in November’s election - the need for change is so painfully clear - and under our current circumstances, the best way to reach overseas voters is by phone banking. Our call may be the only contact members get about voting. Voting from abroad is complex and they appreciate the reminders and support that we offer. 

Become a DA Austria phone banker! Join our phone banking training on May 18 at 6:30 p.m. and we’ll help you get set up and calling in no time. 

 

Raise Your Hand and Volunteer with DA Austria! The only way we can dump Trump, keep Congress, and flip the Senate is by getting all Americans in Austria to register, request, and return their ballot for the November election. It’s all hands on board and we need your help! We have lots of interesting opportunities for you to work on wherever you may be located in Austria. Below are a few wishes our teams have:

Phone Banking: Making calls to potential voters abroad is one of the most important volunteer jobs you can do! Most Americans abroad aren't called in an election even once (those back home are called hundreds of times). This is the job for you if you have a good internet connection and are looking for a way to hold onto the House, flip the Senate, and take back the White House. We know this election is going to be a challenge — calling our members is the most effective way of getting out the vote!

Time commitment: no minimum required. You set your own hours to call.

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Reviews:

Pub Quiz 

A pandemic that is far less dangerous than the one we are experiencing right now, is the global craze for trivia nights. The Young Dems hosted their very first Virtual Pub Quiz on April 16. Questions revolved around democratic candidates and presidents of the past and future, accompanied by the newest Buttijams and Grammy Winners who just so happen to also have been presidents. Our virtual pub is the next best thing to a real one; a great spot to meet other Young Dems and enjoy some trivia!

– Laura Farmwald, Youth Caucus Co-Coordinator

Quarantini 

Despite lockdown, April was a busy month for Democrats Abroad Austria! On April 18, the Communications Committee invited DAA members for its first-ever Happy Hour, though the meeting might have been in cyberspace, the alcohol was real! Topics ranged from how to effectively conduct voter registration in the time of COVID-19, to our favorite quarantine baking recipes and pets. Stay tuned for our next Happy Hour (hopefully in person): a great opportunity to catch up and get to know other DAA members over your favorite drink! 

– Sophie Spiegelberger, Communications Chair

 

Solidarity Sundays #31: 

A $2.3 Trillion Stimulus Package, What’s in it for Me?

From our homes in Vienna, Solidarity Sundays activists conducted an online oversight hearing on the US government’s response to the COVID-19 unemployment crisis. At $2.3 trillion, the CARES Act is the largest economic stimulus bill in modern history. DA Vice Chair Juan Cerda showed us where the money is going. 

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– Tanya Lolonis, Member-at-Large

 

 

Thanks for reading.

See you in June for our next issue!


Solidarity Sundays #31 Review

A $2.3 Trillion Stimulus Package, What’s in it for Me?

From our homes in Vienna, Solidarity Sundays activists conducted an online oversight hearing on the US government’s response to the COVID-19 unemployment crisis. At $2.3 trillion, the CARES Act is the largest economic stimulus bill in modern history. DA Vice Chair Juan Cerda showed us where the money is going.

30%:  Individuals and Families are receiving $1,200 tax rebates from the IRS. Individuals require a Social Security number, couples filing jointly both need Social Security numbers. Families receive an additional $500 for each child under 18. The rebate is reduced for high-income earners. The federal government is topping up state unemployment payments by $600 per week, and gig workers and freelancers are included.

25%:  Large corporations taking federal loans are barred from engaging in stock buybacks (but may offset COVID losses against past profits to increase their payouts). The largest group benefiting from the stimulus:  commercial and cargo airlines, and their contractors.

19%:  The loan pool for small businesses to keep employees on the payroll, all $350 bn of it, ran out in 13 days. An additional stimulus bill was passed with $310 bn. Banks disperse the loans, so businesses without bank relationships — Mom and Pop stores, neighborhood cafés — are locked out. The biggest portion went to companies with large market capitalization.

17%:  At the insistence of Sen. McConnell, state & local government grants are restricted to COVID-19 expenditures and cannot cover budget deficits. States project revenue losses of $500 bn for the next two years.

9%:  Public service grants are earmarked for healthcare providers, Medicare payments to virus patients, the Strategic National Stockpile, the CDC, and food security programs.

Juan ended by highlighting who is left out of the stimulus:  the undocumented and nonresidents who make up our most vulnerable — that is, essential — workers during the pandemic. Also excluded are DACA recipients, small business owners, Indian reservations, and those unable to file unemployment claims due to system overload.

After our oversight hearing, Sunday’s attendees recorded messages for a short video. Why? Tanya Lolonis explained that social media is where the war for November is being fought, and the GOP has a huge structural advantage:  they spent 40 years hating the media and building their own news ecosystem. Republican groups are adept at creating content and pushing it onto Facebook. Democrats are outgunned by Fox, Breitbart, and 1,000 outlets you have never heard of.

So we looked at how everyone can amplify our progressive message on social media. Text, photos, sounds, and videos (like ours!) are pieces of content. Using the supercomputer in our pockets, we can share that content with dozens or hundreds of our contacts. Want your content to be engaging so your friends will share it with their friends? Emotions drive engagement, and nothing is speedier than rage. Awe and wonder, emotions increasing desire for emotional connection, come a close second. This is why posting your personal story moves faster and further on social media.

Here are two things you can do from quarantine to help Democrats in November. One, we need phone bankers. We need a lot of people to each make a few calls. We need you now. Email solidaritysundays@democratsabroad.at and we’ll show you how easy it is to do from home. And two, use that pocket supercomputer of yours to share content and amplify our progressive message. Create content, and visit Democrats Abroad Austria on social media and share ours:  find us on Twitter (@DemsAustria), Facebook (Democrats Abroad Austria) and Instagram (demsaustria).

– Tanya Lolonis




Raise Your Hand and Volunteer with DA Austria! 

The only way we can dump Trump, keep Congress and flip the Senate is by getting all Americans in Austria to register, request, and return their ballot for the November election. It’s all hands on board and we need your help! We have lots of interesting opportunities for you to work on wherever you may be located in Austria. Below are a few requests our teams have:

Phonebanking: Making calls to potential voters abroad is one of the most important volunteer jobs you can do! Most Americans abroad aren't called in an election even once (those back home are called hundreds of times). This is the job for you if you have a good internet connection and are looking for a way to hold onto the House, flip the Senate, and take back the White House. We know this election is going to be a challenge — calling our members is the most effective way of getting out the vote!

Time commitment no minimum required. You set your own hours to call.

Voter registration events and outreach: DA Austria will be setting up voter registration events for the 2020 Elections. It’s one of our best ways to personally reach out to US citizens to help them figure out what they need to do to vote from abroad. The team needs a co-coordinator as well as volunteers to help at events both in Vienna and especially in other cities in Austria.

Time commitment Co-coordinator minimum 1-2 hours per week during Fall 2020. Voter Registration Volunteer no minimum required.

Outreach Coordinators: The study abroad outreach team is looking for volunteers to help with contacting (by phone and email) study abroad programs and coordinating outreach to students leading up to the elections. We especially need people outside of Vienna who can contact local programs! 

Time commitment  minimum 1-2 hours per week during elections.

Press Co-coordinator: Are you a journalist or have experience in communications? Are you fluent in German and English? We are looking for someone to help coordinate our media outreach and press contacts.

Time commitment  minimum 1-2 hours per week especially during elections.

 

Not seeing the role you have in mind? Please get in touch, your ideas are what we need!

Whether you are used to working in a virtual environment or in person — if you are a good team player, these are great roles for you. For more information about any of these volunteer opportunities, please contact me at chair@democratsabroad.at

Only together with all of our efforts will we succeed to hold onto the House, flip the Senate, and take back the White House. Thank you for being a part of our team!

– Jennifer Rakow-Stepper Chair, Democrats Abroad Austria