2016 Democratic Presidential Candidates @ IA Democratic Party Hall of Fame Dinner

L-R: Lincoln Chafee, Hillary Clinton,  Martin O'Malley, Bernie Sanders and Jim Webb
L-R: Lincoln Chafee, Hillary Clinton, Martin O’Malley, Bernie Sanders and Jim Webb

Iowa Democratic Party Hall of Fame Dinner

Former Governors Lincoln Chafee (D-RI) and Martin O’Malley (D-MD), former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT), and former Senator James Webb (D-VA) speak at the 2015 Iowa Democratic Party Hall of Fame Celebration

Learn more: http://iowademocrats.org/hall-of-fame-waitlist-signup-closed/


2016 Democratic Presidential Candidates:

Lincoln Davenport Chafee (born March 26, 1953) is an American politician from Rhode Island who has served as the Mayor of Warwick (1993–1999), a U.S. Senator (1999–2007) and as the 74th Governor of Rhode Island (2011–2015).

Born in Providence, Chafee is the son of Republican politician John Chafee, who served as the 66th Governor of Rhode Island (1963–1969), the United States Secretary of the Navy (1969–1972) and a U.S. Senator (1976–1999). Lincoln Chafee was educated at Providence Country Day School and Phillips Academy, before graduating with a degree in Classics from Brown University. He then moved to Bozeman, Montana, studying to become a farrier at Montana State University, then working at harness racetracks in the United States and Canada.

Chafee returned to Rhode Island and entered politics as a Republican in 1985 as a delegate to the Rhode Island Constitutional Convention. A year later, he was elected to the Warwick City Council, where he served until his election as Warwick’s mayor in 1992. When his father died in 1999, Governor Lincoln Almond appointed the younger Chafee to his father’s seat in the U.S. Senate. He won the 2000 election to a full term, defeating Democrat Robert Weygand by 57% to 41%.

A liberal Republican, Chafee was frequently ranked as the least conservative Senate Republican, and to the left of some conservative Democrats. He opposed eliminating the estate tax, voted to increase the top federal income tax rate, voted against allowing drilling in Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, supported an increased minimum wage and was the only Republican Senator to vote against authorising the use of force in Iraq. Chafee is pro-choice, supports same-sex marriage, affirmative action, gun control and federal funding for embryonic stem cell research and opposes the death penalty and a Flag Desecration Amendment to the United States Constitution.

Political party Republican (1999–2007)
Independent (2007–2013)
Democratic (2013–present)

For more: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lincoln_Chafee

 Lincoln Chafee for President website


Hillary Diane Rodham Clinton (born October 26, 1947) is an American politician. She was United States Secretary of State in the administration of President Barack Obama from 2009 to 2013, a United States Senator representing New York from 2001 to 2009, and, as the wife of President Bill Clinton, First Lady of the United States from 1993 to 2001. A leading candidate for the Democratic Party’s nomination to the 2008 presidential election, she has announced her candidacy for the Democratic nomination in the 2016 presidential election.

As First Lady of the United States, her major initiative, the Clinton health care plan of 1993, failed to gain approval from the U.S. Congress. In 1997 and 1999, she played a leading role in advocating the creation of the State Children’s Health Insurance Program, the Adoption and Safe Families Act, and the Foster Care Independence Act. Her years as First Lady drew a polarized response from the American public. The only First Lady to have been subpoenaed, she testified before a federal grand jury in 1996 regarding the Whitewater controversy, but was never charged with wrongdoing in this or several other investigations during her husband’s presidency. Her marriage to the president was subjected to considerable public discussion following the Lewinsky scandal of 1998.

After moving to New York, Clinton was elected in 2000 as the first female senator from the state; she is the only First Lady ever to have run for public office. Following the September 11 attacks, she supported military action in Afghanistan and the Iraq Resolution, but subsequently objected to the George W. Bush administration’s conduct of the Iraq war. She opposed most of Bush’s domestic policies. Clinton was re-elected to the Senate in 2006. Running in the 2008 Democratic presidential primaries, Clinton won far more primaries and delegates than any other female candidate in American history, but narrowly lost the nomination to Obama.

As Secretary of State in the Obama administration from January 2009 to February 2013, Clinton was at the forefront of the U.S. response to the Arab Spring and advocated the U.S. military intervention in Libya.

Political party Democratic (1968–present)
Other political affiliations Republican (Before 1968)

For more: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hillary_Clinton

Hillary Clinton for President website


Martin Joseph O’Malley (born January 18, 1963) is an American politician who served as the 61st Governor of Maryland, from 2007 to 2015. Prior to being elected as Governor, he served as the Mayor of Baltimore from 1999 to 2007, having previously served as a Baltimore City Councilor from 1991 to 1999. A member of the Democratic Party, he served as the Chair of the Democratic Governors Association from 2011 to 2013. Following his departure from public office in early 2015, he was appointed to the Johns Hopkins University’s Carey Business School as a visiting professor focusing on government, business and urban issues.

As Governor, in 2011, he signed a law that would make certain undocumented immigrants eligible for in-state college tuition on condition; and in 2012, he signed a law to legalize same-sex marriage in Maryland. Each law was challenged to a voter referendum in the 2012 general election and upheld by a majority of the voting public.

Political party Democratic

For more: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martin_O%27Malley

Martin O’Malley for President website


Bernard “Bernie” Sanders (born September 8, 1941) is an American politician and the junior United States Senator from Vermont. He has announced his candidacy for the Democratic nomination in the 2016 presidential election.

Sanders is the longest-serving independent in U.S. congressional history. A self-described democratic socialist, he favors policies similar to those of social democratic parties in Europe, particularly those of Scandinavia. He caucuses with the Democratic Party and has been the ranking minority member on the Senate Budget Committee since January 2015.

After unsuccessful candidacies for Vermont’s governor and U.S. senator, Sanders was elected mayor of Burlington, Vermont’s most populous city, in 1981. He was reelected to three more two-year mayoral terms before being elected to represent Vermont’s at-large congressional district in the United States House of Representatives in 1990. He served as a congressman for 16 years before being elected to succeed the retiring Republican-turned-independent Jim Jeffords in the U.S. Senate in 2006. In 2012, he was re-elected by a large margin, capturing almost 71% of the popular vote.

Political party Independent (caucuses with the Democratic Party)
Other political affiliations Liberty Union (1971–1979)
Vermont Progressive

For more: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bernie_Sanders

Bernie Sanders for President website


James Henry “Jim” Webb, Jr. (born February 9, 1946) is an American politician and author. He has served as a United States Senator from Virginia, Secretary of the Navy, Assistant Secretary of Defense, Counsel for the House Veterans Affairs Committee, and Marine Corps officer. In the private sector he has been an Emmy-award winning journalist, a filmmaker, and the author of ten books. In addition, he taught literature at the United States Naval Academy and was a Fellow at the Harvard Institute of Politics. As a member of the Democratic Party, Webb announced on November 19, 2014, that he was forming an exploratory committee to evaluate a run for President of the United States in 2016. On July 2, 2015, he announced that he would be joining the race for the Democratic nomination for President.

Political party Democratic

For more: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jim_Webb

Jim Webb for President website


Friday, July 17,  8:00 PM ET
Iowa Democratic Party Hall of Fame Dinner
Cedar Rapids Convention Center, Cedar Rapids, Iowa


Live Stream: http://www.c-span.org/video/?327043-1/iowa-democratic-party-hall-fame-dinner



LGBT Equality Caucus

LGBT Equality Cacus

From left to right: Rep. Mark Pocan (D-WI); Rep. Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ); Rep. Mark Takano (D-CA); Rep. David Cicilline (D-RI); Rep. Mike Michaud (D-ME)*; Senator Tammy Baldwin (D-WI)**; Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (D-NY); Rep. Jared Polis (D-CO). *Congressman Mike Michaud retired at the end of the 113th Congress. **Senator Tammy Baldwin was a founding Co-Chair of the Congressional LGBT Equality Caucus before being elected to the U.S. Senate.
From left to right: Rep. Mark Pocan (D-WI); Rep. Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ); Rep. Mark Takano (D-CA); Rep. David Cicilline (D-RI); Rep. Mike Michaud (D-ME)*; Senator Tammy Baldwin (D-WI)**; Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (D-NY); Rep. Jared Polis (D-CO).
*Congressman Mike Michaud retired at the end of the 113th Congress.
**Senator Tammy Baldwin was a founding Co-Chair of the Congressional LGBT Equality Caucus before being elected to the U.S. Senate.

The Congressional LGBT Equality Caucus was established in the U.S. House of Representatives in June 2008 by Co-Chairs Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) and Barney Frank (D-MA), along with Members of Congress who are strongly committed to achieving the full enjoyment of human rights for LGBT people in the U.S. and around the world. Today, the Caucus is co-chaired by the six openly LGBT Members of Congress.

Our Co-Chairs are Rep. Jared Polis (D-CO); Rep. David Cicilline (D-RI); Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (D-NY); Rep. Mark Pocan (D-WI); Rep. Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ); Rep. Mark Takano (D-CA).

The Equality Caucus serves as a resource for Members of Congress, their staff, and the public on LGBT issues at the federal level. The Caucus works toward the extension of equal rights, the repeal of discriminatory laws, the elimination of hate-motivated violence, and the improved health and well-being for all regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity and expression.

For more: http://lgbt-polis.house.gov


LGBT Equality Caucus Twitter

LGBT Equality Caucus Facebook

LGBT Equality Caucus YouTube

PBO Strive for Complete Equality for LGBT

Presidential Proclamation– LGBT Pride Month, June 2015lgbt_obama_logo-sml

 White House – LGBT

LGBT Democrats Facebook

sml LGBT flag

US LGBT Rights Timeline 1903-2014  (ProPresObama.org Civil Rights Timelines ™)

What Will YOU Do to End Inequality?

28  US States with Anti-LGBT Bills in 2015
28 US States with Anti-LGBT Bills in March 2015

Anti-LGBT Bills Introduced in 28 States

The wave of anti-LGBT bills filed across the country continues to swell. As of today, lawmakers have introduced more than 85 anti-LGBT bills in 28 state legislatures.

Some state legislative sessions have already drawn to a close, but other state legislatures will be in session for several more weeks or even months.  So far this year 34 anti-LGBT bills in nine states have been defeated or failed to meet key legislative deadlines, but two have passed — one in Arkansas and one in Indiana.

Among the recently introduced anti-LGBT legislation is a pair of bills in Nevada that would allow individuals and businesses to use religion to challenge or opt out of laws, including laws that protect LGBT people from discrimination in employment, housing and public accommodations.  Similar legislation was also recently introduced in Montana and is still pending in Arkansas, Georgia, Missouri, Texas and elsewhere.

Bills that would allow adoption agencies to use religion to discriminate against eligible parents and guardians have been newly introduced in Alabama and Florida. These new bills are similar to a series of bills moving through the Michigan legislature.

Even in states with long traditions of support for equality, anti-equality lawmakers are introducing anti-LGBT bills.  Massachusetts, for example, is the latest state with a bill that would criminalize transgender people for using appropriate restrooms.  Anti-transgender “bathroom surveillance” bills have are now pending in Florida, Texas and a handful of other states.

For more: http://www.hrc.org/blog/entry/anti-lgbt-bills-introduced-in-28-states


About GLSENs Day of Silence

GLSENs Day of Silence is a national day of action in which students across the country vow to take a form of silence to call attention to the silencing effect of anti-LGBT bullying and harassment in schools.

Founded in 1996, the Day of Silence has become the largest single student-led action towards creating safer schools for all, regardless of sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression. From the first-ever Day of Silence at the University of Virginia in 1996, to the organizing efforts in over 8,000 middle schools, high schools, colleges and universities across the country in 2008, its textured history reflects its diversity in both numbers and reach.

Organizing for Day of Silence
Organizing a Day of Silence (DOS) activity or event can be a positive tool for change-both personally and community-wide. By taking a vow of silence, you’re making a powerful statement about the important issue of anti-LGBT bullying, and when you organize others to join you that message becomes stronger. Discover ways of organizing your event here.

Your Rights
While you DO have a right to participate in GLSENs Day of Silence between classes and before and after school, you may NOT have the right to stay silent during instructional time if a teacher requests for you to speak. According to Lambda Legal, “Under the Constitution, public schools must respect students’ right to free speech. The right to speak includes the right not to speak, as well as the right to wear buttons or T-shirts expressing support for a cause.” However, this right to free speech doesn’t extend to classroom time. “If a teacher tells a student to answer a question during class, the student generally doesn’t have a constitutional right to refuse to answer.” We remind participants that students who talk with their teachers ahead of time are more likely to be able to remain silent during class.  Find more Lambda Legal advice here.

For more: http://dayofsilence.org/resources/

PBO Strive for Complete Equality for LGBTForward For Equality_sml

Nationwide Day of Action for Workers’ Rights 2015

MLK Good Samaritan Speech - AFSCME Sanitation Worker's Strike

On April 4, 1968, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated in Memphis, where he had gone to stand with sanitation workers demanding their dream: The right to bargain collectively for a voice at work and a better life. The workers were trying to form a union with AFSCME.

Beginning with worship services over the April 3 weekend, and continuing through the week of April 6, unions, people of faith, civil and human rights activists, students and other progressive allies will host a range of community- and workplace-focused actions.

Join in solidarity with working people in Wisconsin, Ohio, Indiana and dozens of other states where well-funded, right-wing corporate politicians are trying to take away the rights Dr. King gave his life for: the freedom to bargain, to vote, to afford a college education and justice for all workers, immigrant and native-born. It’s a day to show movement. Teach-ins. Vigils. Faith events.

Stand up against the attack on the middle class and workers’ rights and to honor the life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., who died on April 4 defending workers in Memphis.



Saturday, April 4th, The King Center is calling for a moratorium on all forms of violence, with ‘No Shots Fired.’ “On that day,” said Ms. King, “we are asking that people abstain from shots fired by: 1. Tongue — speech; 2. Fists and physical violence; and 3. Guns – gun violence and media glorification of gun violence.

For more: http://www.thekingcenter.org/news/2015-03-king-center-commemorates-mlk-assassination-call-moratorium-violence

Obama Biden

Congressional Veto Overrides Pres Reagan’s (R) Repeal of Civil Rights

Civil Rights Restoration Act of 1987

 The Civil Rights Restoration Act was a U.S. legislative act which specified that recipients of federal funds must comply with civil rights laws in all areas, not just in the particular program or activity that received federal funding. This Act, also known as the Grove City Bill, was first passed by the House in June 1984 (375-32) but failed to pass in either chamber after divisions occurred within the civil rights coalition over the issue of abortion. In January 1988, the Senate accepted an amendment by Senator John Danforth (R-MO) which added ‘abortion-neutral’ language to the Bill, a move that was opposed by the National Organization for Women but which resulted in passage of the bill in both houses.

Although President Ronald Reagan (R) vetoed the Bill, as he had promised to do, Congress overrode the President’s veto by 73-24 in the Senate and 292-133 in the House. This was the first veto of a civil rights act since Andrew Johnson vetoed the Civil Rights Act of 1866. The passage of this bill thus overturned the Supreme Court‘s 1984 decision in Grove City v. Bell. It applies to Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, the 1973 Rehabilitation Act, Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act.

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Civil_Rights_Restoration_Act_of_1987


How the U.S. Became More Unequal: Minority Rights, Equality &  Ronald Reagan 

Published on Sep 6, 2013

Reagan opposed the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965 signed into law by President Lyndon B. Johnson (D).

Reagan gave a States’ Rights speech at the Neshoba County Fair in Philadelphia, Mississippi, the town where three civil rights workers were murdered in 1964, when running for president in 1980 (many politicians had spoken at that annual Fair, however).

Reagan was offended that some accused him of racism. In 1980 Reagan said the Voting Rights Act was “humiliating to the South”, although he later supported extending the Act. He opposed Fair Housing legislation in California (the Rumford Fair Housing Act), but in 1988 signed a law expanding the Fair Housing Act of 1968. Reagan was unsuccessful in trying to veto another civil rights bill in March of the same year. At first Reagan opposed the Martin Luther King holiday, and signed it only after an overwhelming veto-proof majority (338 to 90 in the House of Representatives and 78 to 22 in the Senate) voted in favor of it. Congress overrode Reagan’s veto of the Civil Rights Restoration Act of 1988. Reagan said the Restoration Act would impose too many regulations on churches, the private sector and state and local governments.

No civil rights legislation for LGBT individuals passed during Reagan’s tenure. On the 1980 campaign trail, he spoke of the gay civil rights movement:

“My criticism is that [the gay movement] isn’t just asking for civil rights; it’s asking for recognition and acceptance of an alternative lifestyle which I do not believe society can condone, nor can I.”

Congressional override of a veto by President Ronald Reagan
March 22, 1988
On this date, by a vote of 292 to 133, the House of Representatives joined the Senate in overriding President Ronald Reagan’s veto of S. 557. Also known as the Civil Rights Restoration Act of 1987, the bill amended Title IX (Prohibition of Sex Discrimination) of the Education Amendments of 1972, the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Age Discrimination Act of 1975, and the Civil Rights Act of 1964. In 1985 the Supreme Court rendered a decision in the sexual discrimination case, Grove City v. Bell, ruling federal anti-discrimination law can only be applied to federally funded programs. In response to the court decision, the new law broadened the scope of applicability to close up loop holes in civil rights laws. Before Congress passed S.557, President Reagan threatened to veto the legislation. Speaker of the House, Jim Wright (D) of Texas informed President Reagan that it would be, “ill-advised” to veto the legislation. Once the President signed the veto on March 16th, Wright stated that he “was confident that the Senate and House would move swiftly to override this unfortunate and short sighted veto.” The President, “may want to turn the clock back on Civil Rights, but the American people do not,” Wright said.
On former House Speaker Jim Wright (D) on November 2013 was denied a voter ID card at a Texas Department of Public Safety office.
Speaker of the House Jim Wright (D) of Texas
Speaker of the House Jim Wright (D) of Texas

“President Reagan may want to turn the clock back on Civil Rights, but the American people do not”


Selma to Montgomery March – 50th Anniversary


The three Selma to Montgomery marches in 1965 were part of the Selma Voting Rights Movement and led to the passage that year of the Voting Rights Act, a landmark federal achievement of the 1960s American Civil Rights Movement. Activists publicized the three protest marches to walk the 54-mile highway from Selma to the Alabama state capital of Montgomery as showing the desire of black American citizens to exercise their constitutional right to vote, in defiance of segregationist repression.

A voters registration campaign in Selma had been launched in 1963 by local African Americans, who formed the Dallas County Voters League (DCVL). Joined by organizers from the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), they began working that year in a renewed effort to register black voters. Most of the millions of African Americans across the South had effectively been disenfranchised since the turn of the century by a series of discriminatory requirements and practices. Finding resistance by white officials to be intractable, even after passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 ending segregation, the DCVL invited Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. and the activists of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) to join them. SCLC brought many prominent civil rights and civic leaders to Selma in January 1965. Local and regional protests began, with 3,000 persons arrested by the end of February.

On February 26, activist and deacon Jimmie Lee Jackson died after being mortally shot several days earlier by a state trooper during a peaceful march in Marion, Alabama. The community was sorrowed and outraged. To defuse and refocus the anger, SCLC Director of Direct Action James Bevel, who was directing SCLC’s Selma Voting Rights Movement, called for a march of dramatic length, from Selma to the state capital of Montgomery.Bevel had been working on his Alabama Project for voting rights since late 1963.

The first march took place on March 7, 1965. Bevel, Amelia Boynton, and others helped organize it. The march gained the nickname “Bloody Sunday” after its 600 marchers were attacked at the Edmund Pettus Bridge after leaving Selma; state troopers and county posse attacked the unarmed marchers with billy clubs and tear gas. Boynton was one of those beaten unconscious; a picture of her lying wounded on the bridge was published and televised around the world. The second march took place March 9; troopers, police, and marchers confronted each other, but when the troopers stepped aside to let them pass, King led the marchers back to the church. He was seeking protection by a federal court for the march. That night, a white group beat and murdered civil rights activist James Reeb, a Unitarian Universalist minister from Boston, who had come to Selma to march in the second march, which had been joined by many other clergy and sympathizers from across the country.

The violence of “Bloody Sunday” and of Reeb’s death led to a national outcry and some acts of civil disobedience, targeting both the Alabama state and federal governments. The protesters demanded protection for the Selma marchers and a new federal voting rights law to enable African Americans to register and vote without harassment. President Lyndon Johnson, whose administration had been working on a voting rights law, held a televised joint session of Congress on March 15 to ask for the bill’s introduction and passage.

With Governor Wallace refusing to protect the marchers, President Johnson committed to do so. The third march started March 21. Protected by 2,000 soldiers of the U.S. Army, 1,900 members of the Alabama National Guard under Federal command, and many FBI agents and Federal Marshals, the marchers averaged 10 miles (16 km) a day along U.S. Route 80, known in Alabama as the “Jefferson Davis Highway“. The marchers arrived in Montgomery on March 24 and at the Alabama State Capitol on March 25. With thousands having joined the campaign, 25,000 people entered the capital city that day in support of voting rights.

For more: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Selma_to_Montgomery_marches


50th Anniversary “Bloody Sunday”, The Selma-to-Montgomery March 

March 5 – March 9 Event Schedule 


“Bloody Sunday”, The Selma-to-Montgomery March Fact Sheet

Selma To Montgomery Voting Rights Trail, a U.S. National Historic Trail



Alabama police chief apologizes to Freedom Rider congressman

3/4/13 By Craig Giammona, NBC News

An Alabama police chief brought Rep. John Lewis to tears Saturday, apologizing to the noted civil rights leader for failing to protect the Freedom Riders during a trip to Montgomery in 1961.

Lewis and fellow civil rights activists were beaten by a mob after arriving at Montgomery’s Greyhound station in May 1961. [The march was tried again but the marchers were again brutualized. The third time was successful with the protection of the US Army].

On Saturday at ceremony at First Baptist Church, the city’s current police chief, Kevin Murphy, apologized to Lewis and offered him his badge in a gesture of reconciliation, telling the longtime Georgia congressman that Montgomery police had “enforced unjust laws” in failing to protect the Freedom Riders more than five decades ago.

Lewis, who was arrested during civil rights protests in cities across the south, said it was the first time a police chief had apologized to him.

“It means a great deal,” Lewis said. “I teared up. I tried to keep from crying.”

Lewis and other members of Congress were taking part in the 13th Congressional Civil Rights Pilgrimage to Alabama, a three-day event that also included trips to Selma, Tuscaloosa and Birmingham.

Murphy said the decision to apologize was easy.

“For me, freedom and the right to live in peace is a cornerstone of our society and that was something that Martin Luther King, Rosa Parks and Congressman Lewis were trying to achieve” Murphy said. “I think what I did today should have been done a longtime ago. It needed to be done. It needed to be spoken because we have to live with the truth and it is the truth.”

For more: http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/03/03/17167907-alabama-police-chief-apologizes-to-freedom-rider-congressman?lite


Leonard Pitts Jr.: What was won in Selma 50 years ago being lost today

3/03/2015 6:14 PM Leonard Pitts Jr – Miami Herald

First, they sang God Will Take Care of You.

Then they walked out of Brown Chapel to a playground where they organized themselves into 24 groups of 25 each and set out marching. Their route out of Selma took them onto Highway 80, which is carried over the Alabama River by a bridge named in honor of Confederate general and Alabama Ku Klux Klan leader Edmund W. Pettus.

It was about 2:30 on the afternoon of Sunday, March 7, 1965.

At the foot of the bridge, the marchers were met by Alabama state troopers. Some were on horseback. Major John Cloud spoke to the marchers through a bullhorn. “It would be detrimental to your safety to continue this march,” he said. “And I’m saying that this is an unlawful assembly. You are to disperse. You are ordered to disperse. Go home or go to your church. This march will not continue. Is that clear to you?”

He gave them two minutes to comply. Just over one minute later, he ordered troopers to advance.

They moved toward the marchers, truncheons held waist high, parallel to the ground. But something seemed to overtake them as they pushed into the demonstrators. The troopers began to stampede, sweeping over unarmed women, children and men as a wave does a shore.

Teargas filled the air. Lawmen on horseback swept down on fleeing marchers, wielding batons, cattle prods, rubber hoses studded with spikes. Skin was split. Bones were broken. The marchers were beaten all the way back into town. A teenager was hurled through a church window. On the bridge, the cheers and rebel yells of onlookers mingled with the shrieks of the sufferers and became indistinguishable.

Thus was the pavement of the freest country on Earth stained with the blood of citizens seeking their right to vote.

By rights, this 50th anniversary of those events should be an unalloyed celebration. After all, the marchers, fortified by men and women of good will from all over the country, eventually crossed that bridge under federal protection, marched for four days up Highway 80 and made it to, as the song says, glory. They stood at the state capital in Montgomery and heard Martin Luther King exhort them to hold on and be strong. “Truth crushed to Earth,” he thundered, “will rise again!”

The Voting Rights Act was signed into law. And African Americans, who had been excluded from the ballot box for generations, went on to help elevate scores of citizens who looked like them to the mayor’s office, the governor’s mansion, the White House.

So yes, this should be a time of celebration. But the celebration is shadowed by a sobering reality.

In 2013, the Voting Rights Act was castrated by the Supreme Court under the dubious reasoning that its success proved it was no longer needed. And states, responding to a nonexistent surge of election fraud, have rushed to impose onerous new photo ID laws for voters. When it is observed that the laws will have their heaviest impact on young people, poor people and African Americans — those least likely to have photo ID — defenders of the laws point to that imaginary surge of fraud and assure us voter suppression is the furthest thing from their minds.

Read more: http://www.miamiherald.com/opinion/opn-columns-blogs/leonard-pitts-jr/article12306056.html


US Minorities Civil Rights Timeline 1863-1963 (ProPresObama.org Civil Rights Timelines ™)

US Minorities Civil Rights Timeline 1964-2009 (ProPresObama.org Civil Rights Timelines ™)

The First Family along with others cross the E. Pettus Bridge
The First Family along with others cross the E. Pettus Bridge


March 7, 2015
President Obama delivers remarks to commemorate the
50th Anniversary of ‘Bloody Sunday’ Selma to Montgomery Marches
Selma, Alabama



Democrats Abroad

Democrats_AbroadDemocrats Abroad pledge

Democrats Abroad was established on Mar 1, 1964.  Democrats Abroad is the official Democratic Party arm for the millions of Americans living outside the United States. They work to advance the principles of our Party by spreading the Democratic message to US voters in other countries and encouraging them to vote for Democratic candidates back home.

Democrats Abroad has committees throughout Europe, the Americas, the Middle East, Africa and Asia. These Country Committees keep Americans abroad informed of their rights and help them participate in the U.S. political process. A support office is maintained in Washington, D.C.

American Democrats living outside of the United States may participate but must first join Democrats Abroad. The online membership form is located on the web site https://www.democratsabroad.org/user/register. Members will receive information on how they may participate in the Democrats Abroad Global Primary.

Democrats Abroad is recognized as a “state” Party by the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and is represented on the DNC by eight voting members, as well as at the quadrennial Democratic National Convention.

For more: https://www.democratsabroad.org/


Democrats Abroad Facebook
Democrats Abroad Twitter
Democrats Abroad YouTube

Vote Every Election

“in the last election — and I want to speak particularly the young people here — in the last election, a little over one-third of eligible voters voted. One-third!

Two-thirds of the people who have the right to vote — because of the struggles of previous generations, had the right to vote — stayed home. I’m willing to bet that there are young people who have family members who are at risk of the existing immigration system who still didn’t vote.

MR. DIAZ-BALART: Mixed-status families. There are millions of them.

THE PRESIDENT: Who still did not vote. And so my question, I think, to everybody — not just to the immigrant community, but the country as a whole — why are you staying at home? (Applause.) Why are you not participating? There are war-torn countries, people full of poverty, who still voted, 60, 70 percent. If here in the United States of America, we voted at 60 percent, 70 percent, it would transform our politics. Our Congress would be completely different. We would have already passed comprehensive immigration reform. (Applause.) It would have already been done.

So I, as President, have the responsibility to set out a vision in terms of where we need to go. I have the responsibility to execute the laws faithfully, and that includes making sure that what’s within my power I am doing everything I can to make the immigration system smarter. But everybody here and everybody watching also has responsibilities. And one of those responsibilities is voting for people who advocate on behalf of the things that you care about.

And staying home is not an option. And being cynical is not an option. And just waiting for somebody else — whether it’s the President, or Congress, or somebody — José — to get it done, that’s not enough.”

Vote for Democrats in the U.S. November 2015 election.

التصويت لصالح الديمقراطيين في الولايات المتحدة انتخابات نوفمبر 2015


vote pour les démocrates aux États-Unis Novembre 2015 des élections

Abstimmung für die Demokraten in den USA November 2015 Wahl

ψηφοφορία για δημοκράτες στις ΗΠΑ Νοέμβριος του 2015 εκλογές

להצביע עבור הדמוקרטים בארה”ב נובמבר 2015 הבחירות

memilih demokrat di AS November 2015 pemilihan

votare per i democratici negli Stati Uniti Novembre 2015 le elezioni


에서 민주당에 투표 미국 2015년 11월 선거

voto para os democratas em os EUA eleição de novembro 2015

голосовать за демократов в США Ноябрь 2015 выборы

votar por los demócratas en los EE.UU. 11 2015 elecciones

bỏ phiếu cho dân chủ tại Hoa Kỳ Tháng 11 Năm 2015 cuộc bầu cử


2/25/15 President Obama speaking at Telemundo/MSNBC Immigration Town Hall
Florida International University, Miami, Florida


Democrat Donkey- thumbnail