Hillary Clinton Refuses to Unify the Democrats on the TPP – July 9th DNC Platform Meeting Update

by , posted on Sunday, July 10th, 2016 at 2:24 pm

During the DNC platform committee meetings, Hillary Clinton surrogates stood with their presumptive nominee in opposing any efforts to take a clear stance against the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), and better unify the party.

tpp-laptop

You can watch the C-SPAN debate on Amendment 93 here at roughly 18:30 in the C-SPAN video – Day 2, Part 1.

The first round of TPP discussions came when Lee Saunders (AFSCME), a Clinton surrogate, initiated Amendment 93, that opposed free trade agreements that do not have protections for workers’ rights and environmental standards. The Saunders amendment did not specifically state opposition to the TPP.

ben-jealous Ben Jealous (former NAACP President), a Sanders surrogate, jumped on the opportunity and sought to amend the Saunders amendment by adding the words, “and that’s why we oppose the TPP.” The parliamentary procedure by Jealous created a vote on the full Saunders Amendment plus the words, “and that’s why we oppose the TPP.” The Jealous Amendment failed.

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We need to undercut President Obama’s TPP at the Democratic Convention

by , posted on Thursday, June 30th, 2016 at 7:07 pm

At the last Democratic Party Platform Committee meeting in St. Louis, Secretary Clinton’s surrogates on the platform committee voted to keep the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) off of the platform agenda.  We also saw the language and strategy that they are employing to allow the Clinton campaign to quietly shift positions on the TPP; giving the Obama Administration one last chance to pass this disastrous trade bill.

hillaryclintonflipflop

According to the Washington Post, during the platform meeting, Rep. Elijah Cummings (Clinton) said, “I don’t want to do anything as he ends his term to undercut the president of the United States.”

Dr. Cornel West (Sanders) effectively countered Cummings when he said, “the responsibilities of citizenship should transcend loyalty to the president.”

I would like to go a step further – We need to undercut President Obama’s TPP.  It is not good for America or working people anywhere in the world.  It is not good for the environment.  The TPP extinguishes democracy; replacing it with corporate government. We don’t need the TPP.  The president is wrong and he needs to reverse his position on the TPP.  The time to send this message is at the Democratic Convention in Philadelphia.  If you need to read more about the TPP, this in-depth analysis from Public Citizen titled, “Secret TPP Text Unveiled: It is worse than we thought,” is worth the read.

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Empty Rhetoric or Will President Obama Propose Legislation to Strengthen Social Security?

by , posted on Wednesday, June 8th, 2016 at 11:54 am

Mr. President where is your legislative proposal to increase and strengthen Social Security?

As the National Democratic Party Attempts to steer their corporate candidate into the white house, they are now openly wooing progressive voters with empty rhetoric.  The first salvo of false promises comes from the sitting president.  Sandwiched between 2008 and 2016 rhetoric promising to increase Social Security, the president actually proposed cutting Social Security as part of a “grand bargain.”

Please sign my petition that calls on President Obama to introduce legislation that would back up his campaign rhetoric.  Watch this video of Bernie Sanders defending Social Security after proposing legislation that accomplish President Obama’s rhetorical goals.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zxPesrGOEcc 

 

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School Board President Annette Johnson verbally abuses District 131 Staff

by , posted on Monday, April 18th, 2016 at 5:48 am

This is an audio file of District 131 President Annette Johnson verbally assaulting and threatening district employees.  When I was elected, I had heard rumors of this kind of behavior, which Annette’s supporters call, “passionate.”  But, this smoking gun proof is downright scary.

There should be no room for bullying – students bullying each other, teachers bullying students, administrators bullying staff and, the board bullying either staff or administration.

Please sign my petition calling for Annette Johnson to resign.

Sadly, District 131 has had enough bad ink spilled over Ms. Johnson’s antics.  And, my preference was to resolve this issue quietly.  I asked Ms. Johnson to resign.  She said that she would not. So, our only hope now is that we put enough community pressure on her to vacate her position on the board.

Annette is a lawsuit waiting to happen.  Worse yet, if District 131 board members are serious about finding a new administrator that can move the district forward, they need to recognize that it will not happen as long as this reckless behavior is driving the district’s decision-making.  For the good of the district, I will happily remove this post when she resigns.

People gave me a hard time when I called on Denny Hastert to resign in 2006 after he covered up sexually inappropriate behavior between Representative Mark Foley and a young male page.  I know that where there is smoke, there is typically fire.  It turns out that I was right about Denny Hastert.

And, I am confident that the tape recording of Ms. Johnson is not an isolated incident.  If you have witnessed this kind of behavior with Ms. Johnson, feel free to leave an anonymous post.  If you have the courage to share it with the rest of the board, better yet.  I recognize that Johnson uses terror-tactics to drive fear into those she seeks to control.  Indeed, she verbally assaulted me one night after I voted against her wishes over the expulsion of a kid.

Or, feel free to contact me or any other board member if you have experienced this kind of behavior – 630.878.7454.

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Saving Democracy

by , posted on Monday, April 4th, 2016 at 6:55 pm

Some reflections on the Illinois primary…

1. I am crazy proud of Kane and Kendall counties. That was the territory assigned to our little Batavia Engine That Could, and we delivered in a big way! Bernie won Kane by 13% and Kendall by 17%. Everyone who worked tirelessly for Bernie, you are incredibly awesome.

2. For a guy labeled a Socialist and a Communist, Bernie is the most Democratic candidate in this race. He has made it this far because people like me have given him money and time. Every phone call, every door hanger, every yard sign, every face-to-face encounter was Democracy in action. It was a beautiful thing. And here in Illinois, it was almost enough to stop Politics As Usual funded by lots of money and essentially zero people power.

3. There is something incredibly powerful about knocking on someone’s door and then engaging in really meaningful, respectful dialogue about the election. I personally talked to a husband and wife who knew nothing about the primary or the candidates. When I offered up why I’m passionate about Bernie (railing over childhood poverty and the lack of equal opportunity for low-income kids), the wife teared up and shared that she is a teacher in a depressed school district. Bernie’s words spoke to her.

I talked to people about issues. Wherever they fell on the political spectrum, many people came out onto the porch to have truly in-depth dialogue. I found common ground in every encounter. People were gracious and kind. Very few looked through the door at my Bernie sticker and just said, “No.” But that was fine too. I wasn’t there to argue. I was just spreading Democracy, one neighbor to another.

I talked to people who didn’t know they could register and vote the same day. I talked to college students heading back to school prior to the election who didn’t know about early voting. I talked to a 17-year-old girl who didn’t know she was eligible to vote (she would be 18 by November).

These are people who quite possibly had already “checked out” of politics because really, what can “we the people” do anymore? What does it matter if I pay attention, if I donate to a candidate, if I put a sign in my yard? The machine is big and powerful, and it strategizes and crunches numbers and connives and carefully crafts messages that will get the biggest bang for the buck.

But I got to deliver a different message as I canvassed in my hometown. I got to tell people that their vote does matter. That regardless of who they ultimately chose to represent them, making a choice was important. I got to tell them that Democracy with a capital D is not dead. It’s alive, and I stood on the doorstep as proof.

4. This isn’t over — it’s the beginning. Bernie fights on, and so will we. If he makes it on the ballot in November, we the people will keep working for him. But regardless, we need to look local. The first day I walked into the Batavia office, I said, “I found my people.” This election brought together lots of perfect strangers who became friends, bonding over a similar vision for a better future for this world. These are good, compassionate people dedicated to saving the Democratic process. We’re going to stick together, and we’re going to grow, and we’re going to find more Bernie People we can support in campaigns at every level of government.

Join us.

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Welcome Kane County for Bernie Sanders – UPDATED

by , posted on Thursday, March 17th, 2016 at 11:56 am
Ten minutes after the meeting ended

Ten minutes after the meeting ended

Last night I attended a Kane County for Bernie meeting that was intended to wrap up our effort, and to develop a list of suggestions that might be useful to the national campaign as it moves on into other states. After Bernie’s not-so-crushing defeat in the primary the day before I expected to be met with a bunch of depressed and morose volunteers.
Sure, many of us touched on our disappointment that Bernie had not won Illinois outright, but we were pleased that Bernie did win the areas we were working in, Kane and Kendall Counties with more than 57% of the vote, and Aurora (one of those urban areas where Bernie supposedly does not do well) with 52%.

As I said, I had expected sorrow, but what happened at that meeting was not a wake but a wake-up. I sat there listening, with my legs still aching from canvassing and my mind kind of foggy with exhaustion as it had been all day, and I gradually started realizing that talk was turning from how the national campaign can tweak things going forward to how we can go forward.

How can we organize Kane County progressives to run for local elections?
How can we continue to help the Bernie Sanders campaign, beyond making calls to other states?
How can we stay in touch with each other and grow the movement?
How, how, how?

A lot of great questions, with some preliminary answers, including the formation of teams to hone messaging, to develop tech training for volunteers, and to research election laws in two adjacent states with upcoming primaries. And an agreement to meet back in the office on Tuesday at 7:00 p.m. to be trained in whatever those teams develop.

Because at this point, it looks like we are going on to Wisconsin, followed by Indiana.

At one point in the evening I offered up this blog as an online space where local progressives can post and follow local progressive news and races over the long term. The blog is not going anywhere and anyone is welcome to post, comment, read and stay aware.

To Kane County’s Bernie team I extend a heartfelt Welcome!

I came very late to the Kane County for Bernie effort and wish I had put in a tenth of the effort that so many of you in that room last night have given. You are the future of progressive causes and elections in Kane County, and you give me great hope for that future.

You can respond to the event invite for Monday’sTuesday’s event here.

You can donate to Bernie here.

You can volunteer here.

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Challenging the right to work for less in Oswego

by , posted on Wednesday, April 1st, 2015 at 8:29 pm

On Tuesday night, March 31st, the people showed up to participate in the democratic process in Oswego. The Village President put a resolution on the agenda for discussion to support Mr. Rauner’s so-called “turn around” agenda. The 100 plus people in attendance were not pleased that the Village President would want to support this anti-worker policy. Most of the comments related to Mr. Rauner’s right to work for less zones euphemistically called “enterprise zones”.

Ten to fifteen spoke on the issue and not one supported it. Many were from Oswego but citizens came from all around. DuPage, Will, Lake, Cook, and Kane counties were represented. There were at least twenty unions represented by some seventy union members which shows that the unions know how much damage Mr. Rauner wants to do to the working people of Illinois.

Some comments touched on the illegality of local right to wage slavery zones. Others talked about Mr. Rauner’s stated desire to destroy Unions. Still others talked about the value and importance of a decent middle class wage to stimulate and strengthen the economy. If middle class wages are destroyed from whom will Oswego collect tax dollars? If middle class wages are destroyed who will shop in Oswego’s stores? Contrary to the common rhetoric the true job creators in America are working people that have money in their pockets to spend in their community.

Pay attention this resolution will be coming to a town council, county board, school board, etc., near you. Stand up and fight back against this unbridled attack on the working people of Illinois.

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Oswego RTW: Rauner’s right-to-poverty zone

by , posted on Monday, March 30th, 2015 at 1:55 pm

The Illinois AFL-CIO received notice that the Oswego Village Board will consider a Bruce Rauner initiated resolution supporting the creation of a Right to Work Zone in Oswego. Besides being illegal under the National Labor Relations Act, right to work zones create a “race to the bottom” pitting community against community and further erode the gains made by the Illinois middle class.

Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan has issued an opinion explaining that Illinois law does not authorize or recognize right to work zones created by any unit of local government in Illinois.

Please contact the members of the Oswego Village Board today (phone and email below) and let them know that Right to Work in any form is wrong for Illinois.

Call To Action! Please pass along this message to people who can attend this Tuesday night’s Oswego Village Board Meeting.
The Oswego Village Board, under the President’s Report, will be presenting a resolution in support of the Rauner “turnaround plan”, known also as “enterprise zones” or “right-to-work zones”, for review and discussion this Tuesday, March 31st , @ 7 pm immediately following the Committee of the Whole, which starts at 6 pm. Oswego Village Hall, 100 Parkers Mill, Oswego, IL.

PUBLIC FORUM IS AT THE BEGINNING OF THE MEETING. YOU MUST SIGN IN TO SPEAK.

http://www.oswegoil.org/PDF/2015.03.31regvb.pdf .

If you cannot attend, call Steve Jones @ 630-551-2360 and ask him to remove this resolution from Tuesday’s agenda.

Oswego Village President:
Brian LeClercq
bleclercq@oswegoil.org
630-554-1555

Oswego Village Board of Trustees:

Tony Giles
tgiles@oswegoil.org

Terry Michels
tmichels@oswegoil.org

Gail Johnson
gjohnson@oswegoil.org

Pam Parr
pparr@oswegoil.org

Judy Sollinger
jsollinger@oswegoil.org

Scott Volpe
svolpe@oswegoil.org

To leave a voicemail for any of the Village Board of Trustees, please call the Village’s main number at 630-554-3618.

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Dennis Anderson begins string of town hall meetings in bid to win U.S. House seat in IL-14

by , posted on Wednesday, June 4th, 2014 at 8:25 pm

To unseat what essentially is a ghost incumbent in the 14th district of northern Illinois, Democrat Dennis Anderson has decided to take his message to the people of the district by holding 20-25 town hall meetings. In St. Charles on Tuesday, Anderson said the only thing that will prevent more meetings is securing venues to hold them.

This is Anderson’s second run for this office and he feels he learned a lot from the previous loss to make him a much stronger candidate. Anderson, who is now retired, said he is not looking for a career in politics. He vowed to do his best to address the issues of the day and if the voters of the district liked his accomplishments they would return him to office. With approximately fifty voters in attendance, Anderson limited his opening comments to a brief history of his past. After that he began taking questions regarding his views on every possible issue facing the nation today.

Here’s a synopsis of issues raised and his view regarding them:

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