Mike Tipping

All MPA-Endorsed Candidates Win or Lead in Maine Primary

The Maine People’s Alliance endorsed five progressive women in contested legislative primaries and Rep. Jared Golden in the Second District congressional race. According to initial results from the Associated Press, all of these candidates have won or are significantly ahead in their races, with votes from some towns still trickling in. Rep. Rachel Talbot Ross won the race in House District 40 with 76% of the vote. Lori Gramlich won in House District 13 with 70% of the vote. Chloe Maxmin won in House District 88 with 80% of the vote. Michele Meyer in House District 2 is ahead with 63% of the vote with two-thirds of towns in the district reporting. Jan Collins in Senate District 17 is ahead with 62% of the vote with just over half of towns reporting. Rep.

Continue Reading...
Matt Brusky

Wisconsin Progressives Score Special Election Upset Victory

 Wisconsin progressives won an important state legislative special election last night in Senate District 1, with the victory of Democrat Caleb Frostman. Frostman was endorsed by Citizen Action of Wisconsin, a People’s Action affiliate. Members of Citizen Action’s Northeast Organizing Cooperative volunteered on phones and doors in support of Frostman. CA NE Cooperative member Renee Gasch canvassing for Caleb Frostman. Photo credit: CAWI / cc Not only does Frostman’s victory flip the seat from Republican to Democrat, it is a rebuke from voters to Wisconsin’s GOP Governor Scott Walker, who refused to hold an election to fill the vacancy before May, as required by state law. The National Redistricting Committee, let by former Attorney General Eric Holder, successfully sued to force Walker to hold the election.

Continue Reading...
Robert Suarez

Our Liberty Is Bound Together

Robert Suarez delivers these remarks on behalf of the  VOCAL-NY Action Fund at We The People, a forum of over a thousand activists from across the country with elected officials in Washington, D.C. on June 13, 2018. I want share a quote from Lilla Watson that many of you will know: “If you have come here to help me, you are wasting your time. But if you have come because your liberation is bound up with mine, then let us work together.” Robert Suarez, VOCAL-NY. Photo credit: Heather Wilson / People’s Action / cc My name is Robert Suarez, and I’m a leader of VOCAL New York. I’ve come to Washington, D.C. to represent People’s Action with critical questions on healthcare and our nation’s overdose crisis. I lost my mother to the AIDS epidemic. She died in my arms. The reason? She contracted HIV through injecting drug use before syringe exchange was legal.

Continue Reading...
Emily Lee

The Fight for Real Solutions In San Francisco

To outsiders, San Francisco may look like a glittering city on a hill: an ethnically diverse metropolis, where tech dollars fuel a vibrant cultural scene and support progressive policies the rest of the nation can only dream about. Women, LGBTQ and ethnic communities have long played leading roles in city politics, and San Francisco was among the first to enact same-sex marriage, a $15 minimum wage and a “right to counsel” law for tenants. Yet at the San Francisco Rising Action Fund, we know our city’s progressive glitter is not gold. The dazzling wealth spawned by tech’s success has made the city virtually unliveable, especially for the working poor, as documented by U.N. special rapporteur Leilani Farha, who visited several Bay Area homeless encampments in January. San Francisco has at least 7,500 homeless.

Continue Reading...
Tiara Moore

Voting For Justice In Las Vegas

My name is Tiara Moore. I live in Las Vegas, where I’m a medical administrator, mother of five, and a voter. I’m also a felon. But that’s not going to stop me from using my vote to help others get what I never got – a second chance. When I was twenty, I lived in Madison County, Illinois. One day, the father of my children tried to hurt me, so I defended myself. The police were called, but when they came, they arrested me, even though I acted in self-defense. To tell the truth, I had no idea what was going on, or what was at stake – I was just a kid, and no one in my family knew anything about trouble with the law. They threw me in a cell, and the only thing I could think about for twenty days was my babies. So when they came and told me I could go home if I accepted a plea deal, I leapt at the chance. I had no money for a lawyer.

Continue Reading...
Jeff Bryant

Is the State Takeover of Jackson Schools a Step Forward or Back?

America’s ongoing saga to “reform” public schools is filled with stories of state officials taking over “underperforming” school districts. Recent presidential administrations, including Obama’s, have approved of such takeovers even though, in nearly every instance—New Orleans, Detroit, Newark—takeovers are carried out by white state officials accusing black and brown communities of being unable to care for their children. This story repeated itself recently in Jackson, Mississippi, where a state audit of the district’s schools gave justification for a series of hearings by the state accreditation board and education department to propose a takeover of Jackson schools. The mostly white state officials presented their cases for takeover in a room limited in seating and closed to the public except for invited guests.

Continue Reading...
Miles Mogulescu

Will South Korean Doves or Washington Hawks Prevail at Summit?

Donald Trump’s unprecedented summit meeting with North Korean President Kim Jong-un could lead to a more peaceful world, or a return to fire-and-fury tweets and provocative military action. It depends, in large part, on whether Trump listens to America’s ally, South Korean President Moon – who has a realistic sense of a process that could lead to peace on the Korean peninsula—or to his neoconservative National Security Advisor John Bolton, who seeks the overthrow of the North Korean regime. Trump’s Narcisissm Trump himself has no fixed policy views on Korea – or much else – and seems driven largely by his boundless  narcissism. On the one hand, this narcissism leads Trump to crave major a breakthrough with North Korea. He believes this would entitle him to a Nobel Peace Prize – Obama, after all, has a Nobel,  so Trump wants one, too.

Continue Reading...
Richard Eskow

“Establishment Wins” Are Bad for Democrats – and the Country

Diehard science-fiction fans will remember the mystical mantra at the heart of the 21st-century “Battlestar Galactica” reboot: “All this has happened before and will happen again.” Democratic Party leaders and members of the mainstream media should keep that sentence in mind during the 2018 and 2020 elections. Given the events of the past few years, how can a reporter for the Washington Post write a sentence like this after the June 6 primary? “Democrats increased their odds of picking up three House seats in New Jersey, as candidates favored by the DCCC beat back more liberal alternatives.” Let’s rephrase that: “Three candidates who were backed by an organization that lost control of Congress, and who espouse policies that voters have rejected across the country, beat back more liberal alternatives.

Continue Reading...
Richard Eskow

For Captured Regulators, Repealing the Volcker Rule is Child’s Play

Perhaps the most condescending and unintentionally revealing comments any banker made in the wake of the banker-created 2008 financial crisis came from Jamie Dimon, CEO of too-big-to-fail bank JP Morgan Chase. “Not to be funny about it,” Dimon told a congressional panel in 2010, “but my daughter asked me when she came home from school ‘what’s the financial crisis,’ and I said, ‘Well it’s something that happens every five to seven years.”’ Millions of Americans lost their homes in the wake of Wall Street’s crisis – which, come to think of it, isn’t that funny at all. Downturns are so simple, Dimon implies, that they can be explained to schoolchildren in a single sentence.

Continue Reading...
Jeff Bryant

Charter School Industry’s Stunning Loss in CA Primaries

In reviewing the losers in this week’s primary elections in eight states, one shouldn’t overlook the charter school industry, which took a drubbing in the California governor’s race where its preferred candidate former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa drew a very disappointing 13 percent of the vote. “Villaraigosa didn’t even get support from voters in demographics you’d expect he’d get,” says Meghan Choi in a phone call, referring to Villaraigosa’s poor showing in heavily influenced Latino Los Angeles County. Choi is director of Ground Game LA, an affiliate group of People’s Action that does micro-level organizing on economic and social justice issues.

Continue Reading...
Hugh Espey

Making Movement Politics Real in Iowa and Beyond

“Our fight to lift up a million Iowans didn’t end when the polls closed,” said Cathy Glasson last night, when she conceded her race in the Democratic governor’s primary. “We’ve built a bold, progressive movement that will be a force to be reckoned with in Iowa politics for a long time to come.” These words embody all that we at Iowa CCI Action believe. Cathy knows our fight is much bigger than one vote, or one candidate: it’s about never giving up until ordinary Iowans get a permanent seat at the table, one that can’t be bought or sold. Our fight is about an end to phony-baloney politics as usual – in Iowa and across the nation. This is movement politics. Cathy gets it: she’s one of us. And like us, she’s in this fight for the long haul. “Our movement isn’t going anywhere,” Cathy added. “There’s too much to be done.” We couldn’t agree more.

Continue Reading...
Richard Eskow

50 Years After 1968, Can the Young Change Politics? A Striking New Poll Says Yes

Fifty years ago, in the dust and fire of global youth activism, everything seemed possible. The political world was a cloud filled with chaos and opportunity, pain and promise. The young were a powerful force, even a world-changing one. Could they become that force again? As many Millennials vote for the first time today in state primaries from New Jersey to Iowa and California, a new poll of their views offers some intriguing glimpses into the future. The survey finds that most Millennials want “a strong government” to manage the economy, and that most millennial Democrats have a favorable view of socialism. What do this poll, and the past, say about our political future? The Young Left It’s more than a truism to say Millennials are this country’s political future.

Continue Reading...
Abby Frerick

Iowans for Glasson: We Are What Democracy Looks Like

Iowans do things their own way – especially when it comes to politics. I know: I’m born and raised in Cedar Rapids, and am a first-generation freshman at Grinnell College, a liberal arts school in the center of the state whose progressive roots reach back to the Underground Railroad and the New Deal. Canvassing for Cathy Glasson. Photo credit: ISA / cc But in recent years, Iowa has become a sea of red: our governor and all but one of our representatives in Congress are Republicans, who trade family farms for tax cuts to the wealthy. All too often, they’re anti-immigrant, anti-labor, and in the pocket of of big agriculture, the Koch brothers and other special interests. So together with fellow students, I’m taking Iowa back for progressives – one vote at a time, starting with my own. We’re going to elect officials who actually represent us and our true values.

Continue Reading...
Luz Sosa

Join Us To Keep Families Together

It’s not right. Infants are being taken from their mothers. Families are being separated, and parents charged as criminals for sheltering children from violence. These courageous parents are doing the right thing. They’re protecting their children the only way they can: by taking them out of harm’s way, and seeking refuge – they hope – from the persecutions they face in Mexico and Central America. And they’re following the law: when they reach the border, they’re voluntarily asking agents to consider their requests for asylum. The U.S., like every civilized nation, is required to do this by international law. But since Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced his “zero tolerance” policy against immigrants, hundreds of children – some only months old – are being snatched up.

Continue Reading...
Jeff Bryant

New Charter School Plan Should Alarm the Nation

Charter schools already have a segregation problem. But a new law about to pass in North Carolina would direct even more taxpayer money into funding charter schools that by design, if not by intent, lead to more racial segregation of school children. This is not only an alarming development in the Old South, where schools made substantial progress on integration since the landmark Brown v. Board Supreme Court case made racially separate schools illegal in 1954. It’s also a wakeup call to the nation on how a campaign to re-segregate public schools is being carried out in the name of “school choice” and “local control.” A ‘Design for Segregation’ The bill, House Bill 514, would allow suburban communities outside Charlotte to create and fund their own charter schools.

Continue Reading...
Sam Pizzigati

U.S. CEOs Are World’s Best – For Themselves

No single statistic, in isolation, tells us particularly much. Numbers only gain real meaning when we compare them. Take, for instance, the figure for the increase in CEO pay last year at major American corporations. A statistic for this increase — 6.4 percent — appears in the just-released 2018 edition of the AFL-CIO’s annual PayWatch report on corporate compensation. Does that 6.4 percent increase rate as a big deal — or nothing to get worked up about? We can’t reasonably answer that question without putting the 6.4 percent figure into some sort of broader perspective. The new PayWatch report, thankfully, provides that context: Average worker pay in the United States last year increased just 2.6 percent. In other words, as the PayWatch study notes, “the imbalance in our economy between the pay of CEOs and working people is worsening.” That is a big deal.

Continue Reading...
Richard Eskow

How Trump and the GOP’s SCOTUS Screw Workers

Many  have observed, correctly, that the Supreme Court’s recent 5 to 4 decision upholding forced arbitration for employees is a “devastating blow” to the rights of working people. This decision by the court’s conservative majority will affect an estimated 60 million workers, who will now be unable to band together to fight the legal and financial power of their employers when they have been mistreated in the workplace. Judges in the Machine Americans have traditionally viewed the Supreme Court as an unbiased, apolitical institution. But today, more than ever, this is an illusion. The court’s conservatives are now an openly partisan cadre. They’re political operatives, not jurists. They’re part of a vast and well-funded Republican machine that seeks to screw American workers so it can further enrich its wealthy patrons.

Continue Reading...
Jake Jacobs

Cynthia Nixon Takes On the Test-And-Punish Regime

Cynthia Nixon’s upstart challenge to New York Governor Andrew Cuomo in the Democratic Party Primary highlights a major theme of the 2018 midterms: progressive candidates forcing establishment Democrats further left on education. One way Nixon is moving the needle? Pushing to end the unfair and inaccurate rating of teachers based on how their students score on standardized tests. Nixon blasted the state’s embattled test-based teacher evaluation system, issuing a statement in late April signed by dozens of New York educators, calling for a full repeal of the evaluation policy. The statement also called for “a rich and balanced curriculum, rather than one oriented around standardized tests,” delivering on long-promised aid to needy schools, and restoration of cuts to state universities.

Continue Reading...
Leo Gerard

Trade Negotiations Require a Steel Spine

President Donald Trump dealt himself a strong hand before negotiating with China. He held three aces. He’d placed tariffs on imported aluminum and steel in response to unrelenting Chinese overproduction. He’d threatened tariffs on $150 billion in Chinese imports in retaliation for theft and forced transfer of American intellectual property. And for trade violations, he forbate U.S. companies to sell parts to Chinese cell phone giant ZTE, forcing it out of business. And then, inexplicably, his lead negotiator, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, quickly folded in talks in Washington, D.C.,  last week. He left two days of negotiations with top Chinese officials with what amounts of an unenforceable letter of intent.

Continue Reading...
Jeff Bryant

Will Teacher Uprisings Change Democrats?

Anyone wondering whether teacher uprisings this spring will influence party politics and elections in November should look at what’s happened in this year’s primaries so far. Most prominent among primary contests involving education issues was an improbable win in Kentucky, where a first-time candidate, math teacher R. Travis Brenda, knocked off the state’s House Republican Majority Leader Jonathan Shell. Brenda had joined with his colleagues earlier this year in staging sickouts that closed schools across the state to protest Kentucky lawmakers’ handling of state public employee pensions and inadequate school funding. Shell “was part of the legislature’s Republican leadership team that crafted and passed pension, tax, and budget bills,” a Louisville news outlet reports.

Continue Reading...
1 3 4 5 6 7 585