Rep. Ginny Brown-Waite: Democrats want to KILL Seniors

Take Rep. Ginny Brown-Waite (R-Fla.), who said in July: "Last week, Democrats released a health care bill which essentially said to America's seniors: drop dead."

We could itemize about 100 other, outrageous comments from the GOP from the floor.

Dem registrations inch ahead of GOP in Klein’s congressional District 22

by George Bennett


Fresh figures from the Palm Beach and Broward county elections offices show Democrats have inched ahead of Republicans in voter registrations in congressional District 22, a seat the GOP held from 1981 to 2007 and that many Republicans still regard as winnable.

District 22 voters have sent a Democrat — U.S. Rep. Ron Klein of Boca Raton — to Congress in the last two elections and Democrat Barack Obama carried the district by 4 points in the November 2008 presidential election.

But until this month, the district had a plurality of Republican voters.

The latest available voter statistics — from this morning in Broward County and from Thursday in Palm Beach County — show 175,785 Democrats and 175,762 Republicans in congressional District 22, which extends from Jupiter to Fort Lauderdale. Another 121,760 voters are registered with minor parties or no party affiliation.

The numbers have been trending Democratic for the past several years.

In 2002, when the GOP-dominated legislature redrew districts across the state to reflect 2000 census data, Republicans held a 42.8-to-34.9 percent registration edge in District 22.

In 2006, when Klein toppled 13-term Republican incumbent Clay Shaw, the GOP still held a 39.6-to-35.2 percent registration edge.

Last November, when Klein defeated GOP challenger Allen West, Republicans were clinging to a 37.7-to-37.0 percent edge in registrations.

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Nelson votes against public option amendment in Finance Committee

The Democratic Party Platform of 25 August 2008 includes the public option, but Senator Bill Nelson of Florida has yet to publicly declare his support for it.

SenatorStatePhoneEmail ElectionInsurance $ Phama $
NELSONFL202-224-5274Email 60.3% '06 269,480 66,650

Call to Action
  • Senator Nelson is to Blame - Raise awareness that Nelson is specifically responsible for the trouble Democrats are having passing the public option

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A Brief History of ACORN

ACORN is the largest community organizing group in the United States. It has chapters

in 110 cities in 40 states. ACORN and its affiliates have an annual budget of over $100

million, over 1,000 employees, and nearly 500,000 dues‐paying families.

ACORN emerged out of the anti‐poverty activism of the 1960s. By the late 1960s, one of

those groups, the National Welfare Rights Organization (NWRO), had built an

organization with affiliates in 60 cities across the country. But because it focused

exclusively on welfare recipients, its narrow constituency base guaranteed that it would

remain a marginal force in the nation's politics. George Wiley, NWRO's leader, and

Wade Rathke, one of NWRO's best organizers, believed that the time was ripe to build a

broader multi‐racial movement for economic justice, with a membership base of lowincome

people, including the working poor, but with support from middle‐class allies. In

1970, Rathke agreed to go to Little Rock, Arkansas and try a different approach. He

started a new group called ACORN (it initially stood for Arkansas Community

Organizations for Reform Now). At first it organized welfare recipients and low‐income

working families around issues that could unite them, including free school lunches,

Vietnam veterans' rights, hospital emergency room care, and unemployment.

ACORN soon expanded in Arkansas and started building chapters in other cities

throughout the South, then later in other parts of the country. By 1975, it was

organizing in eight cities in three states. Five years later, ACORN had chapters in 35

cities in 24 states. By 1990, ACORN counted 40 chapters in 27 states. Its growth

continued in the 1990s, so by 2000 it had 46 affiliates in 29 states. After 2000, ACORN

rapidly accelerated its expansion effort, growing to 92 cities in 35 states by 2005, then

to 103 cities in 37 states two years later. As a result of its expansion outside Arkansas,

the group kept its name but soon revised the acronym to stand for Association of

Community Organizations for Reform Now. Most people, however, simply know the

group as ACORN.

ACORN has focused on issues that improve living and working conditions for low‐income

Americans, including housing, mortgage discrimination, schools, wages, welfare, health

care, and voting rights. ACORN identifies issues by knocking on doors in low‐income

neighborhoods and bringing people together in local chapters. There are thousands of

local groups around the country engaged in community organizing around similar issues.

What makes ACORN unusual, and what accounts for its significant growth, is its

"federated" structure. ACORN is a national organization with state offices and local

chapters. This allows ACORN to conduct organizing campaigns simultaneously at the

neighborhood, local, state and federal levels. As a result, its chapter members are often

"in motion" on a variety of issues, and so that its local organizations can link up with

their counterparts around the country to change national policy on key issues that can't

be solved at the neighborhood or municipal level.

ACORN organizers recruit leaders and identify issues by regularly knocking on doors in

low‐income neighborhoods. People tell ACORN organizers about the problems they

face in their communities. These conversations became the basis of local organizing

campaigns to improve conditions. Its organizing staff works to build strong local

organizations and local leaders that can influence municipal and county governments,

and local corporations or other employers and institutions (such as hospitals) to address

the needs of the poor and their neighborhoods.

Neighborhood organizing defines ACORN's core issues. At the local level, ACORN

members can be organizing to close down a crack house, clean up vacant lots and turn

them into parks, put up stop signs to prevent children from getting killed at a dangerous

intersection, or counsel people on how to negotiate with their bank to stop a

foreclosure. But when national leaders and staff recognize problems that are energizing

members in several cities, they can consider whether the issue can also be effectively

addressed by changes in state or federal policy. Because many problems cannot be

solved solely at the neighborhood or city level, ACORN also educates its members about

the importance of mobilizing at the state and national levels. ACORN employs a staff of

researchers and lobbyists in its national offices in Brooklyn, New York and Washington,

DC to serve the needs of local chapters.

So at the same time that ACORN is tackling local issues, its members may also be

mobilizing voters to approve a referendum to raise the state minimum wage, or push

Congress to pass a federal law tightening rules against mortgage abuse by banks or to

enact universal health insurance, or meeting with top executives of major banks to push

them to change their business practices to be more consumer friendly.

For example, during one week in July 2008, the New York Times reported on ACORN's

successful campaign to save 5,881 rental units of working class housing in Brooklyn. The

Las Vegas ReviewJournal and the Orlando (Florida) Sentinel reported on ACORN's local

voter registration drives. The Pittsburgh PostGazette recounted an ACORN

demonstration at a local bank, with members blowing whistles and chanting "Criminal

offenders, predatory lenders." The New Orleans TimesPicayune described ACORN's

ongoing work to rebuild homes in the Lower 9th Ward neighborhood battered by

Hurricane Katrina. A Connecticut paper described ACORN's counseling program that

helped homeowners save their houses, and local media in Tucson, Arizona reported

ACORN's campaign to pressure local officials to adopt a law to prevent unfair lending

practice. The San Francisco Chronicle reported that Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger signed

a bill pushed by ACORN that will help desperate California homeowners avoid

foreclosure. The Dallas Morning News reported on ACORN's campaign to expand health

insurance in Texas, while dozens of papers highlighted ACORN's key role in a national

coalition of unions, consumer and religious groups to fight for universal health care.

Most of ACORN's members are low‐income, predominantly black and Latino residents of

urban neighborhoods, although there are also white and Asian members in some of its

chapters. ACORN members pay dues, but these don't provide sufficient resources to

pay for the group's operations, so it also depends on local fundraising (such as bake

sales, raffles, and annual dinners) and grants from philanthropic foundations and

wealthy donors. In its earliest years, most ACORN organizers and researchers were

drawn from idealistic college graduates. Increasingly, ACORN has sought to recruit

organizers from among its volunteer leaders, in order to employ a staff that is more like

its members.

Since its founding in 1970, ACORN has mobilized low‐income and working class

Americans to challenge powerful banks, corporations, and government officials around

such issues as wages for the working poor, predatory lending and foreclosures, welfare

reform, public education, affordable housing, and voting rights. It has registered millions

of Americans, mostly poor people, to vote. ACORN's success has depended on staking

out progressive stances, mobilizing poor people, especially its dues‐paying members, on

issue campaigns, and enlisting allies among foundations, unions, religious groups, and


ACORN is often called a "protest" group because it often organizes rallies,

demonstrations, and pickets to draw attention to its campaigns – public events that

generate media attention. But much of ACORN's success is due to its less visible

activities. ACORN staff conduct research that help frame issues and become reliable

sources of information for reporters – for example, research on the discriminatory

lending patterns of specific banks. ACORN engages in quiet negotiations and lobbying

with politicians and other government officials as well as top executives of corporations.

ACORN organizers spend much of their time canvassing neighborhoods, talking to

residents about their problems and recruiting them to attend meetings with their

neighbors. Once ACORN staffers have identified potential leaders, they spend many

hours talking with them in their kitchens, church basements, and other meeting places,

helping them talk about their frustrations and training them in such leadership skills as

chairing meetings, negotiating with people in powerful positions, and public speaking.

At the same time, ACORN recognizes the limits of protest as a tactic as well as the limits

of community organizing as a strategy. One of ACORN's strengths is its combination of

"inside" and "outside" tactics and strategies. ACORN's activists and leaders often work

both inside the system (organizing the poor to participate in politics) and outside the

system (recognizing the need for protest and confrontation).

ACORN has also learned to forge partnerships with some corporations, banks, and

politicians whom it at one time opposed, recognizing that successful organizing

campaigns involve negotiation, compromise, and winning over new allies.

ACORN's signature issues deal with banking practices, housing, the wages of the

working poor, and voting rights.


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Attacks on Acorn are a Vast-Right-Wing Conspiracy hatched by Karl Rove as far back as 2000

Read how the attacks on Acorn is a Vast-Right-Wing Conspiracy hatched by Karl Rove as far back as 2000

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Send Sen. Bill Nelson Birthday Wishes

Tomorrow, Senator Bill Nelson will be voting on the public health insurance option—can you call his office right away?

Here's what's happening:

The Senate Finance Committee, of which Sen. Nelson is a member, is debating an awful health care bill that doesn't include the public option—the key to expanding coverage and bringing down costs.

Progressives have offered amendments that would add the public option to the bill, and the committee will begin voting on them tomorrow. Meanwhile, conservatives are pushing a bogus "trigger" amendment that would kill the public option through indefinite delay.

So we me've got to show Sen. Nelson that his constituents are demanding real health care reform with a strong public health insurance option that's available immediately. Tell him to vote "yes" on the public option amendments, and "no" on the trigger.

Here's where to call:

Senator Bill Nelson
Phone: 202-224-5274

Then Send him a Birthday message telling him to support health care reform.

After you have done both send us a email

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Dolphin Democrats Awards Reception

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IGFA Fishing Hall of Fame & Museum

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Dania Beach, Florida 33004


Saturday, October 24, 2009

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Reception 6:30 to 8:00

Awards 8:00 to 11:00

Silent Aution: Throughout the Evening

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