Monday, September 28, 2009

Democrats Convene in Walla Walla

The WA State Democrats met this past weekend in Walla Walla. Klickitat State Committee reps Bob Hansen and Lorrie DeKay were there, and report some highlights.

Friday night, after a quick pizza dinner with the Skamania County delegation, Lorrie attended a Votebuilder workshop, and has some good info to share with PCOs on how to use this valuable tool. Bob sat in on the Executive Board meeting, so he had a preview of what was to come on Saturday. Both of us joined the 4th Congressional District Caucus, where George Fearing was elected chair in a unanimous vote. You may recall that George ran for Congress in the last election. We'll have more info soon on potential candidates for the next election. We adjourned to the only hospitality suite for a taste of some local wine, fruit and cheese. Since we had an 8 mile drive to our 'homestay' in Milton-Freewater OR that night, and because it was SO crowded in the hotel suite, we headed out early.

Saturday morning, Skamania State Committeeman Paul Spencer made a presentation to the Rural and Agriculture Caucus on Forest Utilization. We have a copy of the speech and will post it to the main webpage shortly. While Bob attended the Eastern Washington Committee meeting, Lorrie went to the Technology Committee meeting, where more discussion of Votebuilder training and authorized use of Votebuilder took place.

Following that session, Bob went to hear an update of Organizing for America efforts, and Lorrie sat in on the Chairs Meeting, since we didn't have a chair with us. The most interesting part of the Chairs Meeting was an excellent presentation by Dr. Susan Plymate on health care reform. She referenced Sept. 2009 article in the New England Journal of Medicine , Getting Past Denial-The High Cost of Health Care in the United States. She reminded everyone that the TIME IS NOW to contact all of your representatives to insist on health care reform. For more information on Health Care Reform, see the WA Democrats website.

We also heard from the Approve 71 Campaign to preserve the Domestic Partnership Law. Please go to their website to see what you can do to help.

Sharon Mast gave a summary of the Caucus Improvement Team Report. Both primary format and caucus format have their plusses. One of the interesting ideas presented was to use the primary results to determine number of delegates, and caucuses to choose delegates and discuss platforms.

We joined the Skamania delegation for lunch and talked about doing some joint events with them. Then it was back to the hotel for the Central Committee Meeting. The main discussion and action was about Rules for the Selection of Candidates and Nominees for Public Office, and the 2010 Delegate Selection and Affirmative Action Plan. We also had a number of resolutions that were voted on as recommended by the Resolutions Committee. The location of the 2010 State Convention will be Vancouver, WA. Fortunately for us, the meeting was over by 5 pm, and we made it safely back to Klickitat County Saturday night.

If you'd like to know more about the WSDCC meetings, ask Bob or Lorrie.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Next Meeting: October 23rd

There is no scheduled meeting for September. Our State Committee representatives will be attending the WSDCC meeting in Walla Walla on Friday and Saturday. The next scheduled meeting of Klickitat Democrats is Friday October 23rd. Save the date.

Friday, September 18, 2009

The MYTH of 60

Join President Obama in calling on Congress to get the job done
Yesterday, Governor Dean laid out the strategy for passing the choice of a public option this year and contrary to the conventional wisdom in Washington D.C. and the media, the Senate doesn't need 60 votes to make change happen.

The Senate only needs 50 senators and Vice-President Biden to pass -- by majority vote -- healthcare reform including a public option in a budget bill this year. Thanks to you, we have 50 senators on record ready to vote for real reform.

The budget process can start as soon as October 15. We need to hit the critical mass of at least 250,000 signers by then to make sure our call to action has an impact on every member of Congress nationwide. We're already off to a great start with over 10% of our goal in just 24 hours. If we work together, I think we can double it and gather 50,000 signatures by Monday.

As the President said in his speech to Congress last week, this is the season for action. The majority of Americans want the choice of a public option and majority votes in Congress will pass it. Join me in calling on Congress to get the job done this year.


The myth of 60 is pushed by those who want to kill reform.

But the foundation of American democracy is based on majority votes and the United States Congress is no exception. While Senate rules allow a procedural tactic known as the filibuster to block most bills without the support of 60 senators, there are exceptions -- because Senate rules also ban the use of a filibuster to block budget reconciliation bills. That means, if the Senate can't pass healthcare reform including the choice of a public option with 60 votes, they can still pass it in the budget bill this year by majority vote.

As I mentioned above, your hard work has identified a majority of Congress in both chambers -- at least 218 House Democrats and 50 Senators -- who will vote for the final healthcare bill if it includes the choice of a public option rather than vote against the bill and kill reform. So Congress has the majority votes needed to pass a public option.

The question is do they have the political will to fight back against right-wing fear mongering and misinformation to deliver real reform?

It's up to us to demand action. Let's work hard to get 50,000 signers by Monday.


We're winning because you know it takes action to succeed. You don't sit back and hope for change, you deliver results and get the job done. That's why we're going to win.

I know I can count on you to deliver. Thank you for everything you do,


Jim Dean, Chair
Democracy for America

Tell Harry Reid It's Time To Lead

It's time for Harry Reid to step up to show leadership and pass the public option through the Senate.

A strong public option is overwhelmingly popular with the public, the House has the votes to pass a bill with a strong public option and President Obama says that he wants to sign a bill with a strong public option.

Yet in the Senate, some Democrats have been allowed to stall reform by fruitlessly trying to attract the votes of Republicans who want nothing more than to see any healthcare reform effort fail. It's clear that getting even a single Republican vote would require unacceptably weakening the bill. Bipartisanship is simply not worth it.

We have the votes to win on the public option. Unlike other types of bills in the Senate, the public option can be passed as a "reconciliation bill" that cannot be filibustered and only requires a simply majority to pass.

Tell Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid he must do whatever it takes, including passing health care reform as a reconciliation bill, to ensure Congress meaningfully addresses the health care crisis we are facing.

Please have a look and take action.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Would YOU Give Glenn Beck the Key to the City?

Any city? Well, Mt. Vernon mayor Bud Norris wants to. And it will happen next week, so join other Washingtonians who think this is a disgrace, including Dwight Pelz, WA State Democrats Chair:
Our country is lead by a racist who is turning America into a fascist state.

That's what FOXNews's Glenn Beck is saying about President Obama, and that is the kind of fear mongering that will be honored later this month. Bud Norris, the mayor of Mount Vernon, Washington, plans to give the key to the city to Glenn Beck on September 26th.

If all politics is local, then we're in trouble. We need to all do our part to fight Glenn Beck's brand of politics. Our partner Fuse Washington has created a petition asking the Mount Vernon City Council to overrule this decision.

Please click right now to sign or read the email below for more information. Don't forget to pass this on to your friends and family too.

Many thanks,

Dwight Pelz, Washington State Democrats Chair

Thursday, September 10, 2009

A Message from Barack Obama

I hope everyone heard the speech last night. He said what had to be said, and stood tall for health care reform. Now it's our turn. So go to the link and let our senators and representative know you want them to vote YES on health care reform.

Dear Klickitat Democrats,

I just finished laying out my plan for health reform at a joint session of Congress. Now, I'm writing directly to you because what happens next is critical -- and I need your help.

Change this big will not happen because I ask for it. It can only come when the nation demands it. Congress knows where I stand. Now they need to hear from you.

Add your voice: Ask your representatives to support my plan for real health reform in 2009.

The heart of my plan is simple: bring stability and security to Americans who already have health insurance, guarantee affordable coverage for those who don't, and rein in the cost of health care.

Tonight, I offered a specific plan for how to make it happen. I incorporated the best ideas from Democrats and Republicans to create a plan that's bold, practical, and represents the broad consensus of the American people.

We've come closer to real health reform in the last few months than we have in the last 60 years. But those who profit from the status quo -- and those who put partisan advantage above all else -- will fight us every inch of the way.

We do not seek that fight, but we will not shrink from it. The stakes are too high to let scare tactics cloud the debate, or to allow partisan bickering to block the path. Your voice, right now, is essential.

See my full plan and call on your representatives to support it:

Ours is not the first generation to understand the dire need for health reform. And I am not the first president to take up this cause, but I am determined to be the last.

Thank you,

President Barack Obama