October 07, 2023

DA-Spain October 2023 Newsletter



Message from DA Spain Chair

Kathy Tullos, DA Spain Chair

I’m writing this missive while recovering from a cold, and it has led me to contemplate the state of our democracy.

Let me elaborate. I’ve been taking measures to combat this cold, resting and hydrating extensively. Essentially, I’ve been striving to bolster my immune system, rallying the white blood cells to emerge and engage in their battle against the illness. Once a sufficient number of them have arrived and fought their microscopic battles against the cold germs, I’ll recover.

Ladies and gentlemen, American democracy is ailing. It's besieged by forces far more menacing than my cold germs. And we, the citizens, are akin to the white blood cells. Each one of us must step forward and contribute to the cure if we are to heal the nation we hold dear. Our individual actions - voting, engaging in phone banking to assist others in voting, composing letters, making donations - represent our battles. Our democracy won’t recuperate unless every one of us participates to the best of our abilities. Every modest effort is a part of the remedy.

I’m doing what I can for my cold and for my democracy. My contributions might be small, but the collective impact of numerous small acts can achieve the goal. White blood cells of the world, unite!

Have a great month!

Kathy Tullos, DA Spain Chair


Announcements & Calls to Action

The Global Presidential Primary

By Helen Morgan, Chair, Seville Chapter

 Do you ever find yourself nostalgic for your home state’s caucus primary process, where you and your neighbors crammed into a fragrant school gym or local library to select your candidate for president? Perhaps you've longed to be a delegate at the National Democratic Convention? Well, don’t worry; just because you live in Spain doesn’t mean you have to miss out on the fun. The Global Presidential Primary (GPP) is our party-run primary that allows members of Democrats Abroad living outside of the United States to participate in the presidential candidate nomination process.

How does the GPP work? There are several ways for you to participate, partly depending on your location. Areas with a chapter, such as Alicante, Barcelona, Madrid, Sevilla, and Valencia, will host at least one GPP event at a voting center between March 5 (Super Tuesday) and March 12. GPP events will vary based on your local chapter, but all will be designed to allow you to vote for your presidential candidate and to gather with fellow Democrats. These voting center events present a fantastic opportunity to generate excitement about the upcoming elections and register Democrats to vote. In areas without a chapter, but with volunteer support, there may be ballot assistance events during the same period, providing further opportunities to build community and enthusiasm among Democrats. Additionally, all members of DA Spain will receive a presidential ballot via email in January, which you can return electronically.

To participate in the primary, in any form, you simply need to reside abroad and be a U.S. citizen, be a member of Democrats Abroad, be 18 as of November 5, 2024, and not have voted or plan to vote in any other state presidential primary.

Chapters are currently planning their voting center events, as the voting center location and other details must be decided by December 31, 2023. Volunteers are also organizing in areas without chapters to host ballot assistance events. Would you like to be part of a GPP team and contribute to building positive momentum for 2024 in your area? We would love to have you! Just send an email to [email protected], and we will connect you with the leadership in your area.

Chapter News & Local Events

By Brett Specter

The Alicante chapter hosted its inaugural in-person event of the Fall season at El Cookie on September 6th. This gathering evolved into an excellent brainstorming session, during which we began to outline events and set goals for the upcoming months. Our first initiative will be an RSVP event scheduled for the weekend of November 4-5th, marking the commencement of the one-year countdown to the election. Yes, it's approaching rapidly! Our main focus will be assisting as many Americans abroad as possible in registering to vote and ensuring they return their ballots in a timely manner.

By Catherine Dexter

Members of the Barcelona chapter convened on September 13 for their first meeting after the summer break. The gathering aimed to reconnect, gear up for the GPP in March of next year, and make progress with the book group.

On September 8th, Lisa, Berger, Catherine Dexter, Steve Tolliver, and Doris Stanger from the Barcelona chapter met with Raul Garcia from the newspaper Punt d’Avui to discuss the perspectives of Americans living in Barcelona regarding the 2024 election. The resulting article, titled “Biden busca vots a Catalunya,” was published on September 19th.

The "back-to-school" edition of La Lucha Continúa started on Tuesday, September 26th, featuring a special guest, former Alabama senator Doug Jones. He shared his insights on the current political landscape and fielded questions from attendees. A recording of the Zoom session is available on the Democrats Abroad YouTube channel.

Looking ahead to October, there are two upcoming events:

On Sunday, October 22, starting at 5:00 pm, DA Barcelona will be screening the first in a series of thought-provoking films followed by discussions at a member’s home to raise funds for our 2024 GOTV efforts. We are kicking off with "The Janes," a documentary about abortion in the pre-Roe vs. Wade seventies. The event will take place at a member's home in La Barceloneta and is open to any Democrats Abroad member. For event details, to sign up, or to add your name to the mailing list for future films, please contact DA Spain-Barcelona at [email protected].

Thursday, October 26: Members have a rare opportunity to meet Martha McDevitt-Pugh, our current global chair, and Julia Bryan, a former global chair recently elected as DA Global representative to the DNC. The exact time and location of the gathering will be announced on the Events page once the information becomes available.

By Lucia J. Perez

DA Madrid volunteers play a crucial role in gearing up for the 2024 elections. We can engage in various activities, such as voter registration drives, canvassing, and phone banking, to mobilize American voters abroad. Organizing events, workshops, town halls, monthly face-to-face meetings, and kitchen table conversations can help inform the community about key issues and candidates' agendas. Becoming a State Representative can also help bring state issues relevant to electing the right candidates into office.

Additionally, leveraging social media and digital platforms for outreach and awareness campaigns is essential. Collaborating with other DA organizations and participating in fundraising efforts can significantly contribute to the election preparations. Preparing for GPP with the assistance of GOTV will also be an essential component to ensure our voting process runs smoothly.

Without a doubt, the dedication and efforts of DA Madrid volunteers are highly instrumental in ensuring a strong voter turnout, making a meaningful impact in the 2024 elections.

By Kevin Dodson

Sevilla.jpgThe Sevilla Chapter hosted a First Friday Coffee at the Hotel Sevilla on September 1st, during which members discussed the impeachment of Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, among other political issues. The next First Friday Coffee is scheduled for October 6th. On September 23rd, Chapter members registered voters at a meeting of the American Women’s Club and recruited new members in the process.
In collaboration with Vote From Abroad, the Chapter will host another voter registration table on October 4th at the CEA Study Abroad Program. Lastly, the Chapter's organizational meeting on the 28th boasted record-breaking attendance. The discussion primarily focused on plans for upcoming events under the theme of “Building Community.”


By Georgie Grossman 

This fall, our chapter introduced the Third Thursday Happy Hour. In September, members gathered at St. Patrick’s Pub to share a brew and swap stories about their summer travels. We hope you can join us for October’s Third Thursday Happy Hour at Portland Alehouse on the 19th at 7:00 PM. If you have any suggestions for future venues, please feel free to let us know.

In October, DA Valencia will be participating in Halloween festivities by operating a trick-or-treat station in Ruzzafa. Children will receive candy, and parents will get Vote from Abroad QR codes.

October’s First Friday Coffee will take place on the 6th at Salad Planet at 10:30 AM. As always, everyone is invited to join the leadership meeting at 11:30 AM.

We're actively brainstorming more activities for the remainder of 2023 and eagerly anticipating Global Presidential Primary activities in 2024. Everyone is welcome to join in on the brainstorming fun!

State Groups Abroad Teams

By Annie Graul, DA Barcelona

The Democrats Abroad state teams organized a successful volunteer recruitment event in September. If you missed it but wish to get involved, visit https://www.democratsabroad.org/state_teams, click on your state flag (or the one you want to support), and then on the red "Join this state team" button. Another crucial way you can contribute is by volunteering for the overarching state teams project. This initiative will assist voters in dealing with state-specific issues in a presidential election for the first time in 2024. We are seeking individuals with strong organizational skills who can create templates, establish a central calendar, facilitate connections across teams, and more. If you are interested, please email [email protected].

Moreover, if you are a voter in Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Utah, or Virginia, it’s time to request your absentee ballot! Visit www.votefromabroad.org today to ensure your voice is heard in the critical November 2023 elections. For more information about the elections and issues in these states, refer to www.ballotpedia.org.

Caucus News

Women's Caucus
By Doris Stanger

Small actions can make a difference!

The ERA is alive, yet it has not yet been incorporated into the Constitution. There are several bills in both the House and Senate related to the ERA, aiming to establish it as the 28th Amendment. How can you contribute? Click on this link for information from the Global Women’s Caucus about the bills currently in Congress and what actions you can take. Contact your Senator. Contact your Representative.

The Global Women’s Caucus also hosts an outstanding book club with engaging discussions. If you enjoy reading and discussing books, click here for information about the next meeting. The book of choice is ‘Good Girls’ by Hadley Freeman, and the discussion will be held on October 8th.

The Spain Women’s Caucus is always in search of volunteers for roles of all sizes. Feel free to get in touch with me at [email protected].

Click here to learn more about DA caucuses and how to join. When you join a global caucus, you automatically beco


Views on the News

60 Years Later: Reflecting on Kennedy's Legacy Amidst Political Turmoil
By Daniel Solon, DA Barcelona
Dan Solon, DA Barcelona
"Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country." This memorable phrase from John F. Kennedy's presidential inaugural address on 20 January 1961 continues to resonate more than 60 years later. Herbert Kitschelt, a political scientist at Duke University, was quoted in The New York Times on 27 September, stating:

"This will be the most important election since 1860 because it will determine the future of our country as a democracy... The 2024 election will also decide whether our nation will preserve a universal sense of citizenship or devolve into a collection of fragmented identity pressure groups, all vying for a share of the pie."

In simpler terms, the current MAGA-dominated Republican party is essentially attempting to re-litigate the outcomes of the Civil War, Reconstruction, and the Jim Crow era, among other historical events. While certain opinion polls and a segment of the Inside the Beltway commentators express concerns about President Biden's age, it's crucial to closely examine the likely Republican nominee, Donald Trump:

  • Born on 14 June 1946, he will be 78 years old at the time of the 2024 election, only three and a half years younger than President Biden, and he displays clear signs of emotional instability and pathological narcissism.
  • He has a history of making fraudulent income and net worth claims during his tenure as a property developer in New York and Florida. These claims were described as fraudulent by a New York State Supreme Court Justice on 27 September. In essence, Trump's assertions of success as a businessman are baseless.
  • Amidst the cacophony of conflicting views on various issues, nonpartisan observers note that Trump’s sole legislative achievement during presidency was a taxation bill that primarily benefited the already affluent taxpayers.
  • Trump currently faces four criminal indictments with 91 counts and is likely to be on trial throughout the upcoming nominating and campaign season. In any previous election cycle, this alone would disqualify him within his own party.

Against this disconcerting backdrop, Americans are now witnessing a group of approximately 20 House Republican members poised to force a Federal Government shutdown while continuing to threaten Speaker McCarthy's current position. As the Speaker clings to his post, he resembles one of the shipwreck survivors in the painting "Raft of the Medusa."

Further emphasizing the challenges, Senator Tommy Tuberville, displaying his commitment to unrelated anti-abortion views, impedes the routine promotions of senior military officers designated for crucial command roles on the Senate floor.

So, what can members of Democrats Abroad do to help steer the situation in a better direction? First and foremost, it is imperative to register in time and vote in their respective states. Reach out to family and friends in the US and abroad, encouraging them to do the same. Whenever an opportunity arises to engage with new American acquaintances, guide them toward Vote From Abroad—unless, of course, they turn out to be MAGA-oriented. In that case, a diplomatic approach such as buying them a drink while avoiding political discussions might be the best course of action. Additionally, contribute within your means to Democratic candidates, especially those in swing districts and states.

As we approach 22 November, the 60th anniversary of the tragedy of John Kennedy's assassination, it serves as a poignant moment to reflect on what each of us can do for our country.

Have a great autumn!
Democrats Abroad Spain

To stay on top of all the news, follow Democrats Abroad Spain on social media. And please forward this email to your American friends in Spain who may not know us!




Donations to Democrats Abroad go directly to registering Americans and get out the vote (GOTV) activities such as phone banking, postcards, and most importantly, social media. Democrats Abroad is an incredible investment in our Democracy because it is 100% volunteer led and organized. Every euro or dollar you give supports our work to elect Democrats who will fight to make a better life for all Americans.  

We are able to do it economically and help win congressional districts and states that make a difference in election victory. DA is a global organization committed to helping Americans abroad to be involved in our country no matter where we live.

If you cannot afford to make a donation, consider volunteering your time, or bringing a friend to one of our events.