Another interesting week in the annals of American Politics… as the President continues to steam roll his way through our Allies in Europe, the Republican Party recently rolled out it’s new logo for the midterm elections… “better off now”. There were daily reports of attacks, physical and legislative, on immigrants, people of color (including one here in Bloomington), and the less well off, by folks who believe that this country belongs to whites and/or the rich to exclusion of everyone else…. Our elected District Nine representative touted the gain of 50 jobs at one location while neglecting to mention that the same company is closing another plant in Indiana for a net loss of 50 Hoosier workers. Our state Attorney General insists that due process is simply a witch hunt against his character.
Meanwhile, here in Monroe and surrounding counties, our candidates are working hard to earn your trust and your vote. You can find them at meetings and fairs, on social media and knocking on doors. Get to know them and what they stand for, let them know what matters to you as a citizen, and give them what help you can in the fight to return to a government that represents us all.
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ENLIGHTENING BREAKFAST SPEAKER ON FRIDAY AT THE VILLAGE DELI!
The special guest speaker at Friday's breakfast was Christie Popp, partner at the local law firm of Popp & Bullman, where she practices exclusively immigration law. Christie has been in practice since 2005, when she graduated from Vermont Law School with her J.D. Before going into private practice, Christie was the Directing Attorney for the Immigrants’ and Language Rights Center at Indiana Legal Services. Christie had so much wisdom and information to impart and too little time. But here are some highlights:
- The Trump administration has instituted a zero tolerance immigration policy which involves prosecuting undocumented individuals for any and all offenses. For many years, the prior policy had granted prosecutors the discretion to prosecute as they saw fit, for example, not prosecuting misdemeanors. The bulk of the individuals currently being prosecuted are South American refugees seeking asylum.
- Trump is, in fact, changing almost all immigration policies that were in place. He may not yet have built his vaunted Mexican "wall," but he has erected an invisible wall, which is as bad or worse. Lest we attribute everything to the current administration, however, she noted that some of the Obama administration's policies (with which Hilary Clinton was also involved as Secretary of State) were not particularly immigrant friendly. Obama significantly increased deportations.
- In responding to a question, Christie confirmed that there is a "denaturalization" push from the administration. This consequence used to be reserved for cases of fraud and other similar issues, but now it is being applied to immigrants who volunteered to serve in the military in exchange for a guaranteed path to citizenship. The administration is starting to discharge such individuals from the military and refuse to live up to the citizenship promise. In addition, green cards are being rescinded with little or no basis.
- She noted in response to another question that a recent case overturned the use of domestic violence as grounds for asylum, which had been an available argument previously.
- Christie emphasized that the administration is using unsupported slogans and propaganda to scare Americans into believing that immigrants are criminals and losers who are causing the decline of our society. We need to find ways to fight back and get the truth out.
- Another participant asked how we can best offer help to both the children who have been separated from their parents and other immigrants. Christie said that there are lawyers and organizations working at the front lines and the best thing we can do is donate money to them. Here is a link to a helpful article on choosing an organization https://www.cnbc.com/2018/06/20/where-to-donate-to-help-immigrant-children-and-families-at-the-border.html. The Bloomington Refugee Support Network is a local resource as well. Here is a link to their website. https://bloomingtonrefugees.org/
- Christie also pointed out that there might be opportunities to foster children, but adoption is not possible.
- The administration has stopped using alternatives to immigrant detention which averaged $36 per day per individual. Detention costs average $300 per day. They are also using private prisons for detention.
- Finally, we could make a difference by working to convince our county to stop honoring ICE holds. Marion County has stopped so why don't we?!
Thanks to Christie for a sobering talk with incredibly useful insights!
AND AN ENLIGHTENING SPEAKER AT THE DWC LUNCH AT GRAZIE ON FRIDAY AT NOON!
It was a day of great speakers for sure! Dee Owens gave a great talk at the DWC lunch at Grazie, providing some of her Washington insider information on the recent plan to re-organize the Federal Government. Just a few of the things we've heard about the plan include privatizing the USPS and merging of the Labor and Education Departments. For those who missed it, here is a link to the plan: http://www.democraticwomenscaucus.org/r?u=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.whitehouse.gov%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2018%2F06%2FGovernment-Reform-and-Reorg-Plan.pdf&e=f5aba68764d8ba0ec0ed5fc12fe3cc44&utm_source=democraticwomenscaucus&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=rmdr_7_5_18&n=3
Breakfast Friday! 7:30am, Village Deli
Special guest is Christie Popp, who will bring us up to date on immigration issues.
Christie is a partner with the law firm of Popp & Bullman, where she practices exclusively immigration law. Christie has been in practice since 2005, when she graduated from Vermont Law School with her J.D. Before going into private practice, Christie was previously the Directing Attorney at the Immigrants’ and Language Rights Center of Indiana Legal Services.
AND LUNCH! Friday, 11:30am, Grazie Italiano
Dee Owens will address some inside information on the recent plan to re-organize the Federal Government... you've heard a couple of things: Privatize the USPS, merging of Labor and Education Departments. There's more and she'll talk about it.
Reservations please at: firstname.lastname@example.org
and here's your homework reading!
Beyond the Basics campaign training.
Sunday, July 8th, 9am - 5 pm.
Vi Simpson has connected us to Kristen Self who has extensive campaign experience with both the Indiana and Missouri State Democratic Parties. She is finance director for both Liz Watson and Jim Harper for Secretary of State Campaigns. Kristen met with Regina to plan a “Beyond the Basics’ training for: our endorsed women candidates, their key team members, potential 2019 candidates, and others who may want to work on a campaign or run themselves.
This is not a drop-in session, and you’ll need to be registered ahead of time to make the absolute most of this training. Kristen plans to send out ‘homework’ ahead of the session so that the class time will be more meaningful to participants.
The Clubhouse at Sherwood Green, 985 Buckingham, has been reserved for this, and the session will be held on Sunday, July 8th. Coffee and registration starting at 9:00am. Session starts at 9:30, with a short break for lunch (on your own) and will start winding up around 5 pm.
Please email email@example.com with your reservation asap!
If you are a candidate, please bring your campaign plan, and a profile of your race so that Kristen can help you with meaningful feedback!
Shows that more women in government means LESS corruption!
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firstname.lastname@example.orgThanks to an outcry from many thousands of citizens outraged by the Trump administration’s “zero tolerance” policy mandating the prosecution of all illegal immigrants and asylum seekers and the separation of the children from their parents, the president was compelled to sign an executive order ending the separate detention of the children. But the fight is far from over. Although about 500 children have been reunited with their families, new and disturbing information continues to emerge: detainees desperate to find their children being essentially compelled to plead guilty to illegal entry even though some have a credible basis for asylum, parents deported without their children, children scattered in foster homes throughout the country, parents and children processed in separate systems with no procedure for matching parents to children. Immigration officials have announced plans to detain as many as 15,000 individuals, while the Justice Department has requested judicial clearance to detain children for longer than allowed by current law and in unlicensed facilities. The situation is fluid, changing from one day to the next and from (un)presidential tweet to (un)presidential tweet, but it’s clear that, as with the Dreamers, Trump sees immigrant children as bargaining chips in his bid to build the “big beautiful wall” with which he hopes to appease his base. And he’s urged Republicans to do nothing until the “red wave” in November that will allow them to pass “great legislation.” Now, more than ever, we have to work to get Democrats elected, from the most local of offices to the state legislature to the US House and Senate. The lives of immigrant children—and the soul of our nation—hang in the balance.
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Indiana Statewide Democratic Candidates celebrating at the Big Dem Weekend:
Joe Donnelly, Jim Harper, Joselyn Whitticker and John Aguilera
The Indiana Democratic Party celebrated it’s Big Dem Weekend in Indianapolis with the Hoosier Hospitality Dinner on Friday evening and the Indiana Democratic Convention on Saturday.
Monroe County was well represented by our delegates and Kaisa Goodman (MCDP Executive Director) and Brandon Turner (MCCSC School Board candidate) were elected by the Ninth District delegates to serve on the Credentials and Rules Committees.
As always the weekend is a combination of serious business and a pep rally. A chance to meet and talk with other Democrats from around the state, to hear from major voices in the national party and from the candidate running for township advisory board in a county on the other side of the state. Here are a few snippets of wisdom from the weekend:
There’s a lot more wisdom in Washington, IN than in Washington D.C.
Unity is vital to our success. We have no time for petty fighting. We need candidates who speak to the people… who talk about infrastructure, immigration reform, elections that allow all voices to be heard and where voters choose their candidates and not the other way around, LGBT protections, and who don’t use their religion to tear down others who are different than they are. We must listen to how they speak to us and what they say. We must continue to change the narrative and put the blame back where it belongs with those currently in power in the GOP.
The Democratic Party is not beholden to a fictional “better” past… it was the Democrats who gave this country social security, medicare, worker protections, and more…. Our party is made up of disparate people joined by common bonds. The need for good, caring government that makes people’s lives better is still real.
We must honor the work of those who came before us and remember that there are those who will follow us. We can’t achieve everything that needs to be done in this election cycle, but we can build an understanding of our common ground and forge a bridge to a future generation.
And finally, It’s about knocking on doors… about knocking on every door - remember that the villain that you think may be on the other side of the door is a person and a Hoosier just like you.
And that’s a reminder that now that the party is over, it’s time to get back to the hard work of getting our message out and our candidate’s elected, and once they are in office, to keep them doing the people’s work…
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Now's the Time to Increase your Campaign Knowledge
Some of the best things in life are free. As we sign up to assist our candidates in the fall election, take an afternoon to do a little free self-training by reviewing the Indiana Election Division website at https://www.in.gov/sos/elections/2395.htm
Anything you do to increase your knowledge of the election laws that apply to Indiana political candidates will be of enormous value to our candidates. They are incredibly busy strategizing, raising money, and knocking on doors, so they really need us to help them navigate the nuts and bolts of running a clean and legal campaign. So bone up now, before things get really crazy, and do it on your own schedule. You do not have to be a lawyer; you just have to be able to read!
Candidate Info ** New Section!
YEAR OF THE WOMAN!!
Going over the Democratic Primary returns, we couldn't help noticing that women won almost every single race*, from the US IN09 House race through Commissioner, Council, down to precinct level races and state convention delegate.
It was an amazing result.
*In the Democratic Primary one woman lost a 2 person race for precinct committee chair. That's it. One woman, out of dozens that ran.
So, is the work of the DWC just about finished?
Have we achieved our dreams from those days in 2004 when we only had three (3) women running in the county races?
Do we need to rethink the DWC, it's mission, it's support and funding for progressive pro-choice women candidates?
This was the focus of two four-hour steering committee meetings in the past couple of weeks. This writer would love to report on progress, updates and changes, but there are more voices to be heard, and candidates to consult, and members to speak up on these issues. So, you'll be asked in the next couple of weeks to give some feedback in this process. Whether it be increased opportunities for political trainings, revision of by-laws and policies (current ones are on the website) or something else you want to talk about, you'll have that opportunity. Be thinking about this renewal project, watch here for the call to a survey, and in the meantime, if you just want to jot down some ideas on any of the above, send those jottings to email@example.com
BETTER LATE THAN NEVER, RIGHT?
Last week, Illinois FINALLY ratified the ERA Amendment!
Which states have NOT ratified the ERA Amendment?
***The answer is in the action section at the end of this newsletter. Hint? (There are 14)
And what now? Does it still count? And who is Alice Paul anyway?
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Candidate Info ** New Section!
Today, as we honor the brave men and women who have given their lives in America's wars, let us remember the words of Eleanor Roosevelt: "Freedom makes a huge requirement of every human being. With freedom comes responsibility." The highest honor we can give to the fallen is our redoubled commitment to fight for the democratic ideals and freedoms for which they died.
Yes - It's that time of the month again - the DWC June Breakfast will take place Friday, June 1 at 7:30am at the Village Deli.
The traditional breakfast program after an election is to have our endorsed candidates speak about their experiences. We’ll get the scoop on their races, highlights of their efforts over the past 4 months, and hear how their association with the DWC affected their campaigns. Some of the questions that might be asked are: why they decided to run, who helped them make that decision, how they found folks to help them in their races and what they need from DWC members going forward. We’ll probably also take a few questions from the audience.
If you were unable to attend the lunch on the Friday after the election (and even if you were) come be inspired by these women who have put themselves forward to serve the people of Monroe County and beyond and given them a rousing send off in their fight to win in November.
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DWC Wins Big in the Primary Election!
WHAT A WEEK! In a groundbreaking primary season with more women running both locally and nationally than ever before, women candidates in Monroe County emerged victorious. Even more gratifying, in every primary race where the DWC had an endorsed candidate, our candidate won! What a spectacular showing, due entirely to the strength and quality of the candidates, their incredibly hard work, and the depth and persistence of their support crews. Give a rouse to the following fabulous women who will now move on to the fall elections!
Penny Githens: State Rep, District 60
Amy Swain: State Rep, District 62
Christine Talley-Haseman: Judge (Seat 2)
Catherine Stafford: Judge (Seat 3)
Darcie Fawcett: Judge (Seat 8)
Nicole Brown: County Clerk
Lee Jones: County Commissioner
Shelli Yoder: County Council
Kate Wiltz: County Council
Pam Cook: Bean Blossom Township Trustee
Michelle Bright: Benton Township Trustee
Beverly Himes: Indiana Creek Township Trustee
Rosemary Doherty: Indiana Creek Township Board
In addition, Erika Oliphant, a supported candidate, won her race for Monroe County Prosecutor. That was a hard fought contest with another DWC supported candidate, Margie Rice, coming in second. We knew there could only be one winner and we applaud Erika and Margie for their joint demonstration of grace and sisterhood in dealing with the result.
We'd also like to thank Clerk Nicole Browne and her staff in the Monroe County Clerk’s office and Election Central for running such a smooth and efficient election. They worked tirelessly to make this happen without a glitch. In addition, Carolyn VandeWiele, election board representative, spent many hours each week leading up to the election and through May 8th ensuring the primaries would be a success. Kudos to both of you and our gratitude for your sacrifices.
The DWC steering committee (really Regina Moore--thank you, Regina!) organized a lunch break for endorsed and supported candidates and other DWC members on election day, and a lunch after the primaries on Friday at Grazie's to talk about the results and lessons learned. Both events were a welcome diversion from the high pace and stress of the last few weeks, and the lunch on Friday especially was a chance for all of us to celebrate the successes, thank families, friends and supporters, and get energized for the fall elections. Remember, folks, it's not over yet. We have to win in November, too, or these will have been nothing but practice runs. There's nothing wrong with learning from an election loss, but let's be honest, not one of us is in this business to lose. So let's put our campaign duds on and lift our candidates to victory in the fall!Read more
DWC Breakfast on Friday, May 4th.
Special guests will be Bloomington Students Against Assault Weapons.
We’ll be hearing from the group of student leaders who traveled to Washington, DC for the March for Our Lives, and who haven’t paused in their organizing efforts since. Please join us to hear about their plans moving forward, and to discuss how we can continue to support youth activism for gun violence prevention in Bloomington and beyond.
A preview of this subject was covered by Noon Edition on WFIU Friday.
After the discussion, join other members as we march to Election Central to vote together.
(This is an abbreviated meeting as the Deli needs to start serving the graduation weekend rush by 8:45am.)
ELECTION DAY ACTIVITIES Traditionally on Election Day, DWC members participate by greeting voters at the polls and offering a list of our endorsed candidates. This year is no different! We call it Point of Sale (POS) and you are invited to help:
Below is a link to SignUp Genius for Election Day to hand out materials for the Democratic Women's Caucus endorsed and supported candidates. You will note that shifts are divide up for both early voting (next weekend) and primary day.
Other cool things:
1) you can pick your preferred geographic location OR a specific polling place!
2) Shifts are 2 hours in length, generally.
3) Many people don't know who to vote for and you being there helps them.
4) Working the polls is FUN!! You meet a lot of great people and get to be outside!!
5) Our progressive females need our HELP!!!
6) Please share this with your campaign teams, friends and anyone who is interested in volunteering!
Once you sign up for a shift, we will contact you to let you know your location. We are analyzing data to choose polls that have the highest turnout. Note that we are purposely not advertising our spots to keep our strategies secret!
Everything you need to know is above or at this link:
P.S. If you run out of literature on primary day, text 812-345-0707 with your name and location and we will bring you more!
Please SHARE this with friends!!!!
In Dem Love,
DWC Steering Committee
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