Karen Frankenstein published Bordeaux - McDermott Dinner in Bordeaux Dinner-Speaker Event with former Congressman Jim McDermott 2022-09-09 08:03:59 -0400
Karen Frankenstein published Delivering Democracy From Abroad in Take Action 2022-09-08 13:20:02 -0400
Join us to talk about the issues that move you and meet the Democratic candidates in this year's most crucial Midterm elections and hear about their mission to turn America Blue – from the ground up!
To get weekly updates on new events as they are confirmed, please click here: Keep Me Updated!
Join Kevin Bacon and Kyra Sedgwick as we meet and greet our Democratic Nominees from across the battleground states!
Meet Progressive Candidates from Coast to Coast!
September 26, 9:30 AM EDT
Join us to hear from Greg Casar (TX-35), Maxwell Frost (FL-10), Summer Lee (PA-12), Jamie McLeod-Skinner (OR-05), and Delia Ramirez (IL-03).
Special guest Ben Wikler (WI Dem Party Chair)!
Meet the California Congressional Candidates
October 8 at 11 AM EDT
Meet with Congressional Candidates: Kermit Jones CA 3, Jay Chen CA 45, Will Rollins CA 41 and more to come!
Building Trust to Empower our Communities
October 12 at 7 AM EDT
Understanding and combating voter mis-/disinformation with Kyle Van Fleet of APIAVote
Meet the North Carolina Congressional Candidate
October 18 at 1 PM EDT
Meet with Congressional Candidates: State Senator Don Davis - NC 1, Rep. Kathy Manning - NC 6, State Senator Wiley Nickel - NC 13
And more! Don't miss:
Service First: Women Senators and the Military
Youth vs. Government - the Environmental Crisis
Violence, Race, and Gender - Gun Control and the Crisis in the USA
Questions? Comments? Email us! [email protected]
If you missed an event, you can find it on Youtube!
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Karen Frankenstein published Wine Tasting Checkout in WINE TASTING IN AIX EN PROVENCE 2022-08-31 03:20:56 -0400
To help U.S. citizens abroad request their absentee ballots and follow the sometimes complicated state-by-state guidelines, Democrats Abroad is sponsoring “Vote From Abroad” voter assistance tables on September 17th at scores of locations around the globe. Virtual voter assistance sessions will also be held throughout the day. The information stands and online assistance are open to all U.S. voters.
Hear from Americans about the upcoming elections and learn more about voting from overseas by visiting one of our Voter Assistance Tables!
Looking for the nearest Voter Assistance and Registration Table? Please check out our list of events below!
Today is Women’s Equality Day, which commemorates the anniversary of the 19th Amendment to the United States Constitution. Passed in 1920, the 19th Amendment prohibits States and the Federal Government from denying people the right to vote on the basis of sex. Bella Abzug, (D- NY), one of the DA Global Women’s Caucus founders, introduced the resolution in Congress, which designated August 26 as Women's Equality Day in 1973.
102 years later, we mark Equality Day not so much with celebration as with a sober assessment of the emergency we find ourselves in. The reality is that American women have fewer rights today than they did 10 years ago. Gains made by generations of women are systematically being legislated away from us. And the roadmap for the Republicans is clear as they openly gerrymander districts, change voting laws, and institute policies and practices to disenfranchise women, minorities, people with disabilities and – last but not least – us, the overseas voters.
Right now, we have a narrow window of opportunity to turn the tide and stop the theft of our rights, our autonomy, and our dignity. The DA GWC has assembled a list of simple actions that anyone can take – the Get Out the Vote for Equality Toolkit - to help increase voter turnout and protect women's equality.
Join us in commemorating and celebrating this struggle by helping to mobilize our base for the ‘22 midterms so that we can all continue to exercise our right to vote. With nearly 9 million Americans living abroad, we have the power to make impactful and lasting changes this election. As the Republicans pursue tactics to undermine the democratic practice of free and fair elections, we will fight back by voting in numbers and sending the loud and clear message that we cannot and will not be silenced. Americans across the entire social, political, economic, and generational spectrum must set their differences aside and unite to use the power of our vote in numbers that will overwhelm the elaborate voter suppression blockade erected against us.
November marks the pivotal moment in deciding our future. We have the chance to ensure that pro-choice and pro-equality candidates win their seats, and WE NEED EVERYONE ON BOARD.
It’s as easy as 1, 2, 3.
- Overseas Voters: Register to vote in your State to receive your absentee ballot here.
- Help us Get Out the Vote, by contacting everyone you know who is eligible to vote and making sure they are ready to cast their ballot as well.
- Reach out to your friends and family – check out our GOTV Equality toolkit here.
With your help, we can win in November!
We stand on the shoulders of generations of women who marched, fought, and died for our rights. We will not let them down.
Ann Hesse, Chair, DA Global Women’s Caucus
Candice Kerestan, International Chair, Democrats Abroad
Karen Frankenstein published Democrats Abroad Victoria Launches Critical Voter Outreach Effort! in News 2022-08-14 05:44:16 -0400
Democrats Abroad Victoria Launches Critical Voter Outreach Effort!
Time is wasting & there isn’t a moment to lose! Democracy itself is on the line in the United States. This November’s midterm election is critical and determines which party controls the U.S House and Senate. Because of the urgent need to elect US leaders who will uphold democratic values, Americans living locally have generously funded a 4-week billboard campaign up and down the Island, starting August 15. The billboard campaign targets the estimated 25,000 eligible US voters living and working on Vancouver and the Gulf Islands. The purpose of the billboards is to urge all U.S and Dual citizens to vote in the midterm elections back in the States. A digital billboard is planned for the Pat Bay Highway. Another digital board is on the highway in Duncan and a third large poster board will go up in Nanaimo. Voters are asked to request their absentee ballot using the website votefromabroad.org. The user-friendly website allows U.S citizens to register, re-register or request their absentee ballots in minutes. It’s never been more important—and it couldn’t be easier—for U.S citizens living abroad to vote!
Welcome to the Pennsylvanians Abroad State Team of Democrats Abroad!
We’re so glad you’re here! Get in touch at [email protected].
Our votes from abroad can be the margin of victory in local, statewide and Federal elections. After the many challenges voters faced in 2021, the 2022 Midterm Elections are set to be the most crucial of our lifetimes. Read on to find out how you can make your vote count!
There are many opportunities to have an impact! Even if you don’t have a lot of time to spare - every little bit helps. From voter outreach and assistance to event planning and support, it’s all hands on deck to ensure that every overseas voter can cast all the ballots for which they are eligible this midterm year.
We’ll be organizing “Meet the Candidates” events, Action Hours, and phone banking throughout the 2022 election season. In addition, we are following developments in voting legislation and redistricting back home. As a team, we’ll be sharing our experiences, our knowledge of the process of voting from abroad, and other state-specific election information that has a real impact in the 2022 election.
Please reach out to us today if you would like to get involved! Check our Events for upcoming planning meetings.
Here are some quick ways to stay up-to-date on the new developments and stay in contact with us:
Please use our Texas Ballot Return Instructions to make sure your ballot is counted!
Click here to download the complete guide!
Karen Frankenstein published Medicare Resources in Our Issues and Resources 2022-07-12 11:19:09 -0400
Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP) Fact Sheet
Please note that Democrats Abroad does not offer financial advice to individuals. The information below is listed for reference purposes only. Please contact your personal financial advisor if you have questions.
What is Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP)?
WEP is a statutory provision in United States law which affects benefits paid by the Social Security Administra- tion under Title II of the Social Security Act.[iii] As seen from above, WEP is a modified benefit formula designed to remove the unintended advantage, or “windfall,” of the regular benefit formula for certain retired or disabled workers who spent less than full careers in covered employment and who are also entitled to pension benefits based on earnings from jobs not covered by SS. The reduction in initial benefits caused by the WEP is designed to place affected workers in approximately the same position they would have been in had all their earnings been covered by SS.[iv]
WEP applies to most people who receive both a pension from noncovered work (including certain foreign pensions) and SS benefits based on fewer than 30 years of substantial earnings in covered employment or self-employment. In 2022, the amount of substantial earnings in covered employment or self-employment needed for a year of coverage is $27,300. This amount is adjusted annually by the growth in average wages in the economy, provided a cost-of-living adjustment is payable. The WEP affects retired or disabled worker beneficiaries and their eligible dependents. However, it does not affect survivor beneficiaries.
When did WEP get established?
On April 20, 1983, President Reagan signed into law H.R. 1900 (Public Law 98-21), the Social Security Amend-ments of 1983. One amendment designed to shore up the financing of SS was the establishment of WEP. Its purpose was to remove an unintended advantage or “windfall” that the regular SS benefit formula provided to workers who also had pensions from non-covered employment (i.e., employment not covered by SS). Congress wanted to eliminate an unintended windfall that federal retirees had been enjoying for years.
This formula was intended to help workers who spent their careers in low paying jobs, by providing them with a benefit that is relatively higher in relation to their career-average earnings in covered employment than the benefit that is provided for workers with high career-average earnings.[i] The formula used to compute SS benefits included factors that ensure lower-paid workers get a higher per-centage of return than their more well-to-do counterparts. For example, lower-paid workers got a SS benefit that equals up to 90 percent of their pre-retirement earnings. Highly paid workers received rates of return that were considerably less.
The problem was that the formula could not differentiate between those who worked in low-paid jobs throughout their careers and other workers who appeared to have been low paid because they worked many years in jobs not covered by SS. Thus, under the old law, workers who were employed for only a portion of their careers in jobs covered by SS - even highly paid ones - also received the advantage of the weighted formula, because their few years of covered earnings were averaged over their entire working career to determine the average covered earnings on which their SS benefits were based.
Before the law was changed in 1983, employees who spent time in jobs not covered by SS had their benefits computed as if they were long-term, low-wage workers. Thus, they received the advantage of the higher percentage of SS benefits in addition to their other pension. The WEP was intended to remove this advantage or windfall[ii] - the "windfall" of social security benefits received by beneficiaries who also receive a pension based on work not covered by SS. Again, the windfall refers to the subsidization of the primary insurance amounts (PIA) (or worker’s basic benefits) for beneficiaries with lower incomes throughout life. Prior to WEP, beneficiaries who paid little into SS but were paid well outside of the system were given this subsidy.
What are the advantages of WEP?
1.Social Security is financed.
2.WEP places affected workers in approximately the same position they would have been in had all their earnings been covered by SS.
What are the disadvantages of WEP?
Regardless of President Regan’s claim that this bill is a “monument to the spirit of compassion and commitment that unites us as people”, there are disadvantages:
1.Beneficiaries who have paid into SS do not receive the full benefits but reduced benefits. These do not represent their full SS contributions over the years.
2.Beneficiaries believe workers (i.e., themselves) do not get their fair share of benefits when they retire. (For example, the penalty imposed on the overseas retiree is disproportionately burdensome because of the lower cap.)
3.Some beneficiaries only learn of WEP after they have retired, and the reduced benefits affect substantially their financial standing in later years.
4.The problem WEP was meant to resolve didn't consider in a fair and equitable way the impact on overseas retirees.
How many Americans Abroad are affected by WEP?
HR 82/S1302 Social Security Fairness Act of 2021 is the “gold standard for repeal” of WEP. HR 5723/23071Social Security 2100: A Sacred Trust, HR 2337 Public Servants Protection and Fairness Act of 2021 and HR 4788 Wellbeing for Every Public Servant Act of 2021 modify the application of WEP. These all are limited in scope. The DA Seniors Caucus want the repeal of WEP and support wholeheartedly HR 82.
[iv] See: Windfall Elimination Provision (ssa.gov) and Congressional Research Service (2022) Social Security: The Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP) March 7, 2022, Washington DC: CRS.
Karen Frankenstein published Paris 4th of July 2022 Checkout in Paris July 4th Celebration 2022-06-13 15:00:32 -0400
Karen Frankenstein published WANTED: Accessibility Coordinator in Meet the Team 2022-06-05 04:42:26 -0400
Accessibility Coordinator [Volunteer Position]
The Global Disability Caucus (GDC) Accessibility Coordinator will lead one of our top priority projects. Our goal is to assess the experience of being a member of Democrats Abroad and identify potential issues for persons with disabilities. Then fix them and train/help people to use them.
Elderly Widower Finds A Fishing Partner After Posting A Tearjerking Classified Ad
Life is not easy when you get old. In fact, many older adults face so much pain and loss as they outlive their loved ones, one by one. Then there are the many health ailments that accompany old age. One widower already faced his share of troubles after losing his wife and fishing partner, but he refused to give in to the gloom and loneliness. Instead, he turned to the internet to find a new fishing partner. Read more …
Woman Follows Little Boy Who Takes Leftovers from Her Restaurant Every Day
One night while at her restaurant until near closing time, a little boy came in to speak with the chef. From the start of the conversation, it was obvious that the boy and chef already knew each other. As soon as the chef saw the boy, he immediately knew what he was in the restaurant for. Read more …
Scientists Discover Children’s Cells Living in Mothers’ Brains
The link between a mother and child is profound, and new research suggests a physical connection even deeper than anyone thought. The profound psychological and physical bonds shared by the mother and her child begin during gestation when the mother is everything for the developing fetus, supplying warmth and sustenance, while her heartbeat provides a soothing constant rhythm. Read more …