Progressive Caucus - News

proDA "Next Steps" Meetings

WOW! 

Thanks to the many activists who participated in our monthly meeting on October 9th 2021.  We discussed what we can do to deliver for the planet, working families, and all who count on us to do just that with a truly big and bold Build Back Better Act, the Freedom to Vote Act, and much much more. Our momentum is surging to work toward progressive victories in 2021, 2022, and beyond. 

WHAT'S NEXT?

We host follow-up working-group meetings next Saturday and need your help!

When?

Saturday, 16 October at 2:00-3:00 pm CET--Terms of Reference Review (see Terms of Reference published here)

Saturday, 16 October at 3:00-4:00 pm CET--Communications

Saturday, 16 October at 4:00-5:30 pm CET--Working Groups/Collaboration/Events:

    Topics:

  • DA Environmental and Climate Crisis Council formation
  • Democracy and diversity reform in DA, the DNC, and state parties/primaries 
  • Foreign Policy Coordinating Committee
  • Medicare for All campaigns
  • Student debt relief efforts
  • Voting rights legislation
  • Issue advocacy priorities

 

Where?

Zoom: Please RSVP to the individual events above to receive the link.

There is plenty of work to do and your help is needed. 

THE NEEDS ARE CLEAR AND OUR TIME IS NOW!


May Calls to Action and Events

Actions:

Protect the overseas vote in New Jersey state elections - it was lost in 2017, and is more important now than ever with issues like climate change and net neutrality that affect us all. Join DA members globally and contact your NJ representatives now.

Urge your Senators to pass the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act

Support the THRIVE Act, an economic renewal plan as big and interconnected as the crises we face. In this bold investment package, impacted communities play a leading role in building a more just economy. Sponsored by Sens. Ed Markey and Jeff Merkley, and Reps. Debbie Dingell, Ilhan Omar, Jamaal Bowman, Pramila Jayapal, Earl Blumenauer, Ro Khanna, Yvette Clarke, and Nanette Barragán, this plan will Transform, Heal, Renew, and Invest in a Vibrant Economy. Contact your Senators and House Representative and urge them to support the THRIVE Act.

Reduce military spending. Tell your House Representative and Senators that the military budget is out of control and we need to redirect those funds to help people and the planet. In 2020, an unprecedented 116 Representatives voted for a reduced military budget. Urge your Rep to join the Defense Spending Reduction Caucus, headed by Reps Barbara Lee and Mark Pocan.

Strengthen union organizing with the PROAct. Backed by President Biden, this legislation will make it easier for ordinary hard working Americans to join unions and earn the pay, benefits and job security they deserve. Tell your Senators to support the Protecting the Right to Organize Act. These Democrat Senators still don’t support the PROAct: Mark Warner (D-VA), Mark Kelly (D-AZ), and Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), along with Republican Senators. Call them! And if your Senator supports the Act, urge them to end the filibuster so this and other necessary legislation can move forward.

Events:

In case you missed it - proDA’s Biden/Harris Progress Report #4 reviewed the American Rescue Plan, American Jobs Plan, American Families Plan, and Made in America Tax Plan. View the Progress Report’s slide deck with links to more information and suggested actions or watch the recording.

DATE - Biden/Harris Progress Report #5 is June 24, focused on the American Jobs Plan. RSVP here.

May 29 - proDA Germany’s Global AGM Update on May 29th recaps the results of DA’s recent Global Annual General Meeting and next steps, from a progressive perspective.

May 30 - DA Austria’s Solidarity Sundays addresses Biden’s Infrastructure Plan

May 31 - proDA Global Book Club discusses The Tea Party and the Remaking of Republican Conservatism. Book available for those with access issues. RSVP here.

June 24 - proDA Biden/Harris Progress Report #5 explores the American Jobs Plan as an infrastructure plan, economic recovery plan, and the roadmap for a renewable revolution, as well as actions we can take to advance progressive change. RSVP here.

June 28 - proDA Global Book Club discusses How Fascism Works. Book available for those with access issues. RSVP here. 


March 23 - Quick Summary and update

The Progressive Caucus invites you to learn and take action. March 24th join proDA Austria for Biden/Harris Progress Report #2Discuss progressive themes in the Oscar-winning film Parasite on March 27. On March 29, we’ll talk about the Romance of American Communism in the 70s and what it has to do with now. Let’s discuss concrete action in How to be an Anti-Capitalist in the 21st Century, our April 26th book. We also recommend DA Austria’s Solidarity Sunday on the Filibuster, March 28, as well as Western Sweden’s discussion with a long-time socialist on March 30. And we’ve just released our full reading list for 2021!

Phone your Senator at the HR 1 Phone Bank on March 23, 7-9pm Berlin Time. Absolutely don’t miss the April 11th presentation on how to use Billtrack50 to track legislation, research policy and develop plans to reach legislators and make policy a reality. Check out calls to action from Poor People’s Campaign, Sunrise, Our Revolution, NNU’s M4A campaign, and Fight for $15, and Code PInk to urge your Representative to join the Defence Spending Reduction Caucus.




Reading List Announced for 2021 Book Club Meetings - Read one, Read all

The Global Progressive Caucus Book Club has lively discussions on a wide range of books. Check it out the last Monday of each month, 12-1:30 pm ET (Toronto time).

For more information, see Progressive Caucus Book Club, or contact the Book Club leaders Betsy Ettorre and John Esteban Rodriguez at [email protected]

2021 BOOKS  

The Deficit Myth: Modern Monetary Theory and the Birth of the People's Economy by Stephanie Kelton - January

Black Reconstruction in America by W.E.B. Du Bois - February

The Romance of American Communism by Vivian Gornick - March 29 - RSVP here

How to Be Anti-Capitalist in the 21st Century by Erik Olin Wright - April 26 - RSVP here

Tea Party and the Remaking of Republican Conservatism by Theda Skocpol & Vanessa Williams - May 31

How Fascism Works by Jason Stanley - June 28

The Old is Dying and the New Cannot Be Born by Nancy Fraser - July 26

A History of America in Ten Strikes by Erik Loomis - August 30

Left of Karl Marx: The Political Life of Black Communist Claudia Jones by Carole Boyce Davis - September 27

Beaten Down, Worked Up by Stephen Greenhouse - October 25

A Job Guarantee by Pavlina Tcherneva - November 29

The Fight for Four Freedoms: What Made FDR and the Greatest Generation Truly Great by Harvey Kaye - December 27

The People, No: A Brief History of Anti-Populism by Thomas Frank - January 31


ProDA January 2021 News Highlights

Progressive Caucus (proDA) invites you to take these actions putting people and the planet before profit:


August/September Highlights

A majority of DA Delegates to the Democratic National Convention mobilized for M4A, signing a pledge to vote NO on the 2020 DNC Platform unless it included a commitment to a universal, single-payer healthcare plan. They voted NO as a block together on August 11th in solidarity with over 750 other delegates. Read more here.

Share these powerful stories of Americans in France who love M4A. Our Revolution France recently released Expats in France: Why We Love Medicare for All, Experiences of Americans on both sides of the Atlantic reveal French healthcare costs less and saves lives. Here is the short, powerful companion video

 Join a book discussion with the new Progressive Caucus Book Club. The next meeting is September 7th [rescheduled from August 31st] to discuss Bigger than Bernie: How We Go from the Sanders Campaign to Democratic Socialism by Micah Uetricht & Meagan Day. On September 27th, we’ll discuss Women, Race and Class by Angela Y. Davis. See the full list of books here. Assistance available to access books. RSVP here.

 Help elect progressives up and down the ballot! Check out our tips on how to find and support progressive candidates, wherever you are in the world.

Screen_Shot_2020-08-21_at_5.11.16_PM.pngHave you got some progressive friends and family who hesitate to vote for Joe and Kamala? Join us for our online discussion, Bittersweet November to understand this perspective and effective ways to discuss it with them, September 5, 11 am Korea Standard Time (September 4, 10 pm Eastern time). Or share this article with them and start a discussion: Bittersweet November: An Opponent, An Opportunity by Kelsey McLendon

 Want Progressive U.S. Politics? Continue to Reform the Democratic Party Rules. So says Larry Cohen, Chair of Our Revolution in this informative article explaining the direct connection between party rules and electing progressives.

 


Majority of DA Delegates mobilize to support M4A + Call to Action!

Majority of DA Delegates mobilize to support M4A + Call to Action!

The majority of Democrats Abroad (DA) delegates to the Democratic National Convention have joined over 750 others from around the United States in a move to put Medicare for All squarely on the party’s agenda.

Fifteen members of the Dems Abroad Delegation of 23 have signed a pledge to vote NO on the 2020 DNC Platform unless it includes a commitment to a universal, single-payer healthcare plan.  This compassionate initiative has gained support from Biden delegates as well.  These delegates are participating in the Democratic process and exercising their right to vote on convention business. Voting NO on the proposed platform exerts influence for Medicare for All, towards bringing the Democratic Party in line with the majority of Democratic voters.  It is voicing the sentiments of those who elected them.  High-quality, equitable, and freely available healthcare for all Americans is one of the main policy priorities of the Democrats Abroad Progressive Caucus and supported by a majority of DA members, as well as included in our own DA Platform.

John Baumlin, DA Sanders Delegate and DA Japan Chair, helped compile positions of all state party platforms and reports that ". . . the state platform data and our own platform in DA, does not support the current proposed DNC platform."

In solidarity with other state party delegates, the fifteen DA Biden and Sanders delegates have pledged to vote NO on the platform as a bloc on Tuesday, August 11, 2020.

Non-Delegates can sign 👉 an Action Network M4A pledge to reaffirm their support and call upon the Democratic Party to include  M4A in the 2020 Democratic Party Platform!

The draft 2020 DNC platform is a product of negotiations between a team of Biden delegates and Sanders delegates.  It progresses beyond past platforms in some areas, like climate and infrastructure policy.  However, it is a major disappointment to the 70~80% of Democratic voters who, polls show, consistently support Medicare for All. The draft platform was approved to be sent to the full convention by the Platform Committee by a vote of 173-0.  Currently, it is being voted on remotely up or down in a single vote by all delegates.

The draft is expected to be approved.  Nonetheless, a number of Sanders delegates led by Nevada Delegation Chair Judith Whitmer, are taking a strong stand for a position clearly supported by the majority of Democratic voters and state party platforms.  Whitmer sent other delegates an email saying, "During a public health crisis in which millions of Americans have lost their health insurance and families have to choose between paying rent or healthcare, the Democratic Party just refused to call for a universal, single-payer “Medicare For All” healthcare system in our National Platform. Even with irrefutable proof that our private insurance system has completely failed us as a nation, our Party leaders have chosen to mold our platform to a candidate’s position.

Instead, our National Platform should reflect the values and principles of the people. The majority of all Americans support Medicare For All and it’s time for the Democratic Party to stand with the people. The DNC has affirmed that healthcare is a human right; therefore, it is the responsibility of our government to protect and uphold that right by untying healthcare from employment and profit margins and by guaranteeing healthcare for all."

DA Sanders Delegate Ty Cofield, of DA Poland, explained, "The 2020 Call for the Convention states: "All delegates to the National Convention pledged to a presidential candidate shall in all good conscience reflect the sentiments of those who elected them." If our delegation and state party electors voted support for Medicare for All as a human right, we're obliged to support them by voting NO on the party platform. The current platform simply isn't the best we can do. We can and should do better." Ty Cofield as M4M-Pledge Deputy Delegate Whip has been working with 2020 DNC NV Delegation Chair Judith Whitmer to whip votes across State Party Delegations.

Lissette Wright, DA Sanders PLEO Delegate and DA Canada+Global Treasurer, reached out to other DA delegates to support the pledge, sharing her view that "Our Democratic Party Platform is our roadmap and it should be bold enough to improve the life of every single American! The lack of commitment to Medicare For All in our Party Platform is appalling and inhumane!"

ProDA Co-Chair Sue Alksnis, who championed Medicare for All within the Dems Abroad platform process, commented, “Voting NO on a platform that ignores Medicare for All shows Dems in Congress and the Senate that we will keep fighting and pushing, phoning and texting, voting and organizing until there is guaranteed, quality single-payer health care for every person in the country.”

Medical Student, DA Sanders Delegate Anya Leonhard, of DA Germany, remarked, "While I'm happy to go on and on about the positives of the German healthcare system versus the United States, the private option creates a two-tiered system of healthcare that disproportionately disadvantages BIPoC, those with chronic illnesses, and those with lower incomes. The base level of care is higher than in the United States, but there is still inherent inequality in the system. The fact of the matter is that, when competing public and private options remain in a system meant to uphold a fundamental human right, the human right in question is monetized and relativized. Why would we need private healthcare if our public option provides sufficient coverage for everyone?"

The DA delegates who have publicly pledged to support Medicare for All by voting no on the platform on August 11 are:

DA Delegation M4A-Pledge Signers

  1. Onélica Andrade, Belgium (Joe Biden)
  2. Maria Allgaier, UK (Joe Biden, Alternate)
  3. John Baumlin, Japan (Bernie Sanders)
  4. Farid Ben Amor, Switzerland (Bernie Sanders)
  5. Tyler Cofield, Germany (Bernie Sanders)
  6. Anne Dlugosz, France (Bernie Sanders)
  7. Tim Ellis, Canada (Bernie Sanders)
  8. Anya Leonhard, Germany (Bernie Sanders)
  9. Helen Li, China (Bernie Sanders)
  10. Diego Rivas, Germany (Bernie Sanders)
  11. Ken Sherman, Americas (DA DNC Member)
  12. Orlando Vidal, Global (DA DNC Member)
  13. Lissette Wright, Canada (Bernie Sanders)
  14. Claire Lops, Germany (Bernie Sanders, Credentials Committee)
  15. David Wenk, UK (Bernie Sanders, Alternate)

PS: Read ProDA article on how to find and support progressive candidates | Volunteer for the National Nurses United M4A campaign!

PPS: Here is the Delegate Pledge👇

Delegate Pledge Supporting Medicare for All

Whereas, this Country is currently in the throes of a catastrophic public health crisis; and

Whereas, this emergency has led to massive job losses due to the Country’s response to that crisis; and

Whereas, millions of Americans have lost their healthcare insurance because of those job losses at a time when healthcare is needed most; and

Whereas, this crisis has highlighted the need to separate healthcare from employment; and

Whereas, we believe that healthcare is a basic human right, not a luxury; and

Whereas, our current, for-profit health care system is inherently racist and discriminatory; and

Whereas, the majority of Americans now believe that a universal, single-payer, Medicare-For-All system is the best way to achieve equitable, affordable and accessible healthcare for all Americans; and

Whereas, the Democratic Party and their Platform Committee process has failed, to date, to incorporate a clear and progressive platform plank for Medicare-For-All for adoption by the 2020 National Convention; therefore

Be it resolved that we, the undersigned delegates to the Democratic National Convention, pledge to vote against any 2020 Platform that does not include a universal, single-payer, Medicare-For-All platform plank.

~M4A Pledge spearheaded by Judith Whitmer JWpeace-m4a.jpgDNC 2020 Nevada Delegation Chair.

N.B. Democrats Abroad is not responsible for any use of your personal data by the third party service that created this petition. You should verify the petition site's privacy rules.

PPPS: Former U.S. Ambassador Bruce A. Heyman tweeted on August 9, 2020 a TWP article about 👉 "The health care scare: I sold Americans a lie about Canadian medicine. Now we’re paying the price." 👈

BruceAHeyman-Twitter-Wow-HealthInsuranceWhistleblower200809.png

***

#DrawTheLine • 8/11 - 8/15 • #M4AllNow

On August 11, 2020, the majority of Democrat Abroad Delegates voted NO on the 2020 Democratic Party Platform as it does not include a universal, single-payer, Medicare-For-All platform plank.

DADelegatesG15-200811.Twitter.png

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Progressive Caucus Global Book Club Starting July 27, 2020

We’re starting a proDA Book Club on July 27, 2020. Led by Betsy Ettorre and John Esteban Rodriguez. See information on the July 27th book club meeting and RSVP.

Click here for more information about the Book Club, including Book Club guidelines.  


Petition the DNC for a Green Platform

The DNC Environment and Climate Crisis Council has proposed a very ambitious $16 trillion plan to combat climate change (https://www.dncclimate.org/the-platform).  It aligns well with proDA support for a Green New Deal.  Adrianne George, DPCA DNC member and founding member of the Council, encourages us to write messages in support of  the proposal to the Council's Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/DNCClimate/) and sign its petition to tell the Democratic Party 2020 Platform Committee to adopt the proposal. It only takes a minute. Please consider signing, commenting that you are associated with the Progressive Caucus of Democrats Abroad, and share the petition widely in your social media network.

 

NOTE: Democrats Abroad is not responsible for any use of your personal data by the third party service that created this petition. You should verify the petition site's privacy rules.

 


How to Find and Support Progressive Candidates in 2020

Why?  

To ensure real progress in 2020, winning the White House is necessary.  But it is not enough.  We also must regain the Senate majority, increase our House majority, and win races up and down the ballot everywhere at every level of government.  Our best shot at achieving those goals is to support candidates who will fight for the progressive policies supported by growing U.S. majorities, including Medicare for All, a Green New Deal, the Fight for 15, and much more.  Voters in the remaining primaries and in the general election will determine whether or not the Democratic candidates support these and other progressive policies. They and we hold the progressive future in our hands!

Who are the progressive candidates?

Many progressive organizations work hard to identify the candidates who meet their requirements for endorsement.  Consulting their recommendations is one method to determine who to support.  Here is a list of some organizations with links to their endorsements:

Brand New Congress
Indivisible
Progressive Democrats of America
Justice Democrats
Our Revolution
Working Families Party

Many issue-based organizations endorse candidates, too. Here is a sample list:

Moms Demand Action (Reasonable Gun Legislation)
National Nurses United (Medicare for All)
Sunrise Movement (Green New Deal)

Progressive broadcasts provide yet another source of good information, often featuring specific candidates.  Among others, these seem especially noteworthy:

Democracy Now
The Rational National
Rumble with Michael Moore
The Humanist Report
Rising with Krystal and Saagar
Secular Talk with Kyle Kulinski

What can we do?

  • We can develop our personal candidate lists, share them with friends, family, and community members, and consider volunteering for at least one candidate.
  • Each of us can select one issue and support the candidates who champion it!
  • We can listen to progressive broadcasts and share our favorites!

Let’s ensure victory for the largest possible number of progressive candidates who speak loudly in favor of the reforms and policies!