Tuesday, May 31, 2005
Tricounty Meetup Reminder
In this reminder:
1. Meetups in Glens Falls and Saratoga Springs
3. Lessons from Vermont
1. Meetups in Glens Falls and Saratoga Springs
There will be DFA Meetups tomorrow, Wednesday, June 1 in Glens Falls and Saratoga Springs.
In Glens Falls the Meetup will be held at its usual time and place, 7pm at the Rockhill Bakehouse Cafe in downtown Glens Falls.
In Saratoga Springs the Meetup will be at 7pm at Pat Friesen's home, 36 Thoroughbred Drive. Pat suggests that if you like you could bring a snack or beverage.
We'll be discussing DFA's June and July "Healthy Communities" initiative, and house parties, visibility events, picnics and other ideas which we can discuss. There will be a special DFA only preview of a new documentary by film maker Robert Greenwald. "Uncovered: The War On Iraq" and "Outfoxed, Rupert Murdoch's War On Journalism." After the preview there will be a live conference call with film maker Greenwald.
In Glens Falls we will also have a special presentation by Glens Falls Common Council Candidate Walt Combs. Walt will be unveiling some very innovative proposals for revitalizing Glens Falls and we will have more.
To reach the Rockhill Bakehouse Cafe, take Exit 18 of the Northway into Glens Falls. Past the Hannaford Supermarket, bear right at the fork in the road by the Stewart's shop. Go past the Post Office and the Hospital to the last stop light before the main intersection of Glen and Hudson Avenue downtown. The Cafe is on the left at the corner of Hudson Ave., Exchange and Elm Street.
To reach Pat Friesen's, take Broadway South. Across the street by the Dance Museum turn into Cresent and then left into Thoroughbred Drive. 36 is at the end.
There is an Interesting article out on Governor Dean and his efforts to bring back the Democratic Party. As the author notes, there was a reason Karl Rove wanted Dean out last year and it's still the reason they're worried now:
3. Lessons from Vermont & Montana
No part of the country is as similar to our Northcountry region of New York as nearby Vermont. David Sirota, who is a fellow at the Center For American Progress and blogs for Working Assets as well as himself (I recommend signing up for his daily updates) points out some remarkable statistics about Bernie Sanders;
"Sanders won in 47 of the 48 Vermont precincts in which George Bush beat John Kerry. In all but three of those, Sanders beat the Republican candidate (his closest competitor) by double digit margins: he won ten precincts by more than 20%, fourteen precincts by more than 30%, and eleven precincts by more than 40%. Remember, those are precincts where George Bush won while Sanders split his vote with two non-Republican candidates, and Sanders didn't just beat his Republican opponent. Sanders destroyed his Republican opponent."
"In other words, the progressive populist Sanders is not only cleaning up in the blue parts of Vermont, but in the very red parts of Vermont as well (and just head up to the Northeast Kingdom if you don't think there are very red parts of Vermont). Using economic populism on issues like trade and wages, he is able to attract culturally conservative, working-class voters to his side. That is what makes him such a force in his state - and what can make other Democrats more successful in their own."
For a more detailed piece on Sanders with really good insights: http://www.inthesetimes.com/site/main/article/2126/
Drew sends this Sirota piece on Montana, which also has a lot in common with the Northcountry:
"With Montana having a Democratic governor and Democratic legislature for the first time in years, the pressure was on for the new majority party to deliver. And deliver they did. Far from trying to govern as watered down Big Business Republicans, Democrats passed a slate of progressive populist reforms. For their effort, they are being roundly rewarded in public opinion polls."
"According to a new poll by Lee Newspapers, Gov. Brian Schweitzer's (D) 57/33 favorable/unfavorable ratings are far higher than Gov. Marc Racicot's (R) poll numbers at the same time in his term (Racicot was one of Montana's most popular governors). The poll also shows that the 2005 legislature received "significantly higher marks than they did the previous two sessions." 49 percent of Montanans had a favorable view of the recent legislative session, while 45 percent had a negative impression. By contrast, in 2003, 70 percent of voters had a negative assessment of the Legislature, while 27 percent had a positive one. In 2001, 58 percent of voters had a negative evaluation of the Legislature, while 27 percent had a positive one."
"This should serve as a model for other "red" state Democrats. Instead of trying to mimic Republicans, the party now has more proof that a strong, populist middle-class agenda can succeed in the heartland. It simply requires political leaders with courage."
What this all also means is that Democrats who live in New York's supposedly conservative Northcountry need not despair; if they can do it in Vermont and Montana, we can do it here!
See you tomorrow!