Progressive Breakfast for August 14

Morning Message

What’s At Stake When We Vote This Year

A lot is at stake when we go to vote this year. It’s about restoring our faith in our leaders. But more than that, it’s about restoring our faith in one another. The good news is that our government and its institutions are creations of people. People like us, working together, have the power to remake them. Our work is to create intentional communities that represent the spectrum of our diversity that work together to break down the barriers that divide us, deepen our understanding of one another. And that is just what is beginning to happen.

Primary Votes In Four States

What To Watch In Tuesday’s primaries: WI, MN, CT, VT. NPR:

“Primary voters in four more states — Connecticut, Wisconsin, Minnesota and Vermont — go to the polls on Tuesday. This year’s been dominated by talk of Democratic gains, but today Republicans will pick nominees in several places where they hope to flip House seats and even governors’ mansions. Two Republicans who failed to win the White House are hoping voters will elect them to lead their states for a third time — but one’s trying to make a political comeback after almost a decade out of office. We’ll find out who could replace House Speaker Paul Ryan in his Wisconsin district. And Vermont Democrats could make history by nominating a transgender women for governor.”

WI Dems Hope To Unseat Gov. Walker

Wisconsin Dems jump at chance to finally beat Walker. Politico: “Wisconsin Democrats on Tuesday will choose from a field that once swelled to over a dozen candidates — an array of businessmen, state legislators, the mayor of Wisconsin’s most liberal city and the chief of the state firefighters union — to realize their long-elusive goal of defeating Republican Gov. Scott Walker. But the clear frontrunner is state education superintendent Tony Evers, a 66-year-old white man who stands out in a year when Democrats have put forward high numbers of women, young people and first-time candidates for office. What Evers lacks in sizzle, Democrats are hoping he compensates for with a record of clashes with Walker over education that could energize his party and deny the Republican governor a third term. After years of doing battle with unions and pushing conservative legislation, Walker may be the one Republican who gets Wisconsin Democrats as agitated as President Donald Trump does. And that, say some Democratic officials in the state, might be enough in a year like this. ‘If there’s a rub on Tony Evers, it might be that he’s too nice,’ said Joe Wineke, a former Wisconsin Democratic Party chairman. ‘But I’m not convinced Midwestern nice is going to be a bad thing in the year of Trump.'”

Trump Trade Boss Enriched Himself

Top Trump appointee may have committed serious crimes while trying to enrich himself in office. Alternet: “On Monday, the Campaign Legal Center (CLC) filed a complaint with the Commerce Department’s Office of the Inspector General, alleging serious misconduct and potential criminal violations by Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross. The complaint, according to the overview, calls for ‘an investigation into whether Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross violated the criminal laws on conflicts of interest and false statements.’ Specifically, CLC alleges that Ross, a billionaire investor, holds assets in multiple companies that are directly impacted by decisions of the Trump administration, in potential criminal violation of federal conflict of interest laws, including Air Lease, Sun Bancorp, and a “major” holding in Chinese steel. Altogether, the document cites 46 different assets Ross has not accounted for despite pledging to divest.”

NextGen To Register 180,000 Millennial Voters


Tom Steyer plans to register 180,000 millennials to vote. Axios:
“Tom Steyer’s NextGen America organization is working to register 100,000 students in one month at college campuses across 11 states as part of its ‘Welcome Week’ program launching this week. This is the group’s biggest voter registration effort yet, focused specifically on the most crucial bloc of non-voters, and it’s happening just three months before the 2018 midterm election. They’ve already registered 80,000 millennials, and now they want to register 100,000 more through mid-September. NextGen will deploy 765 organizers to 420 campuses — including 135 community colleges and 14 historically black colleges and universities — to engage with students during “Welcome Week” as they’re headed back to school.”

What It Means To Say ‘Abolish ICE’

Why activists want to ‘Abolish ICE.’ The Conversation: “‘Abolish ICE’ is no mere campaign slogan. It is a goal focused on dismantling a single young agency. I believe that, in its historical context, ‘Abolish ICE’ is part of a larger vision to build a new a social order committed to the liberation of all. This wider abolition movement is not solely about dismantling what advocates believe to be harmful institutions and rectifying the social conditions that feed them, like income inequality. As activist Angela Davis argues, the goal is ‘not even primarily about abolition as a negative process of tearing down, but it is also about building up, about creating new institutions.’ Abolition advocates want resources redirected from policing and prisons to community-centered institutions like health care, housing and education. Is this vision feasible?”