Maggies Awards & Statewide Volunteer Appreciation Tour RNC Supports Roy Moore Net Neutrality Threatened Health Insurance Open Enrollment Period Ends Friday Senators Cantwell & Murray on Tax Bill Conference Committee Rise & Organize
As you know, this year we took the Maggies on the road so that we could honor our volunteers and activists in their own communities. The tour started on Sunday, and it’s still going on!
Chair Tina Podlodowski met with local leaders from Yakima County on Sunday, and that evening we held our first volunteer appreciation party and Maggie award presentation at
our new field office in Yakima, where we awarded the Maggie for Central Washington Organizer of the Year to Mary Lopez for her outstanding work organizing on behalf of Democratic candidates and progressive initiatives.
On Monday we left Yakima and traveled to Spokane. Tina spent two days meeting with local party leaders from Spokane County and the 3rd and 6th Legislative Districts. Tina also met with Lisa Brown, the Democratic candidate for the 5th Congressional District in 2018 (a.k.a. Cathy McMorris Rodgers’ worst nightmare).
On Tuesday night we threw a massive volunteer appreciation party in Spokane, where we presented the Maggie awards for Eastern Washington Candidates of the Year to Karen Hardy and Susan Swanson, two inspiring women who ran in this year’s two special elections in the 7th LD for state Senate and state House. As a reminder, the 7th LD is the most Republican district in Washington State. Karen and Susan have not only begun rebuilding Democratic infrastructure in Eastern Washington — which will help Lisa Brown take the fight to Cathy McMorris Rodgers on multiple fronts — they have also served as an example, helping Democrats learn how to connect better with voters in rural America. Both Karen and Susan have announced that they intend to run again in 2018.
On Wednesday, after Tina finished some press interviews and phone calls, we went south from Spokane, through the smooth and rolling hills of the Palouse, and arrived in Pullman. After Tina met with Whitman County Democratic leadership, we held a volunteer appreciation party in Pullman and presented the Maggie award for Eastern Washington Organizer of the Year to Eric Fejeran, chair of the Whitman County Democrats, for his outstanding work in 2017 strengthening the Democratic Party in Whitman County, advocating for progressive policies in Pullman, and even running for Pullman City Council in his spare time.
On Thursday morning we left Pullman, traversing the Palouse to the southwest. Tina met with local leaders in Dayton and in Walla Walla. That night, we hosted a volunteer appreciation party in Walla Walla, where we talked strategy for Southeastern Washington.
On Friday, we drove from Walla Walla to Burien, where Tina presented the Fantastic 4 — Jimmy Matta, Nancy Tosta, Pedro Olguin, and Krystal Marx — with the Maggie award for Trailblazers of the Year. The four awardees all won their city council races in November after a long and hard-fought race in which anti-immigrant special interests amassed against the progressive candidates and promoted a hateful agenda with nasty mudslinging at the candidates and other Burienites. But Burien and surrounding communities rallied behind Jimmy, Nancy, Pedro, and Krystal to make clear that hateful speech by outside special interest groups does not win elections. Not in Burien. Not anywhere in Washington State.
Today we have volunteer appreciation parties in Auburn and Issaquah where Maggies recipients will be honored. And on Sunday, we drive to Pasco where Tina has a day full of meetings with local party leadership before we head over to Richland for the Tri-Cities Holiday Party, where we will present the last Maggie awards of the tour.
To Democratic volunteers in every part of the state: thank you. Your work and dedication is what drives the Washington State Democratic Party and enables us to lead the way in resisting the Trump agenda and championing progressive values.
While we were focusing mostly on the Maggies tour this week, we were also taking note of other news across the state and country — like early in the week when the Republican National Committee decided to reendorse Roy Moore, the Republican candidate for U.S. Senate in Alabama who has been accused of sexual misconduct against minors from multiple corroborated sources.
Democrat Doug Jones, on the other hand, is a former U.S. Attorney who has prosecuted KKK members with dogged resolve and believes in bipartisan solutions to make sure that all Americans can afford health care and find a job. As Jones said this Tuesday, “I damn sure believe–and have done my part to ensure — that men who hurt little girls should go to jail, not to the U.S. Senate.”
The Federal Communications Commission is set to vote to repeal rules ensuring net neutrality this coming Thursday. The FCC intends to give up authority over broadband internet providers and allow the Federal Trade Commission to regulate such companies. This would effectively allow companies to skirt regulations implemented under President Obama that ensure that access to the internet remains largely open and fair.
FCC Chair Ajit Pai claims this move will promote investment in the industry. But it will mainly be a handout to internet services providers by allowing them to charge more for various levels of service and speed. That has big implications for your ability to watch a show on Netflix, post content on Facebook, download a file from Dropbox, or even read our future Week In Review emails. This will hurt individuals, startups, small businesses, and virtually anyone who is not an internet service provider. Those who have the means will be forced to pay more for internet access; and those who do not have the means will simply be locked out of many websites and online tools.
The open enrollment period to apply for health insurance for 2018 ends this week on Friday, December 15th. Make sure you have applied for a health insurance plan or for a change in coverage before then.
Go to https://www.wahealthplanfinder.org/ to find a plan in Washington State. If you’ll be living in another state in 2018, go to https://www.healthcare.gov/ for help finding a plan in your state.
Senators Maria Cantwell and Patty Murray have both been appointed to the conference committee on the tax bill that Republicans hurriedly pushed through the House and Senate. This will be the last chance for Democrats to have any say in what the bill looks like before it is solidified and enacted into law. Both Senators vehemently opposed the bill’s passage and plan to discuss the issues the bill will affect.
The Republican tax bill has a lower approval rating among the American public than even Donald Trump has.
. A few dollars a month will help us continue to ramp up our organizing efforts all over the state and mobilize to defeat Republicans like Cathy McMorris Rodgers and Dino Rossi. Plus you’ll get some new Rise & Organize gear when you sign up!