Tag Archives: ActBlue

40 Days Until Sestak-Specter and Halter-Lincoln

{First, a cheap plug for my blog Senate Guru.}

40 days from today – on May 18 – we will see two HUGE primaries for U.S. Senate.  Even though these races aren’t in California, they impact Democrats across the country and, well, the entire country as a whole.

In Pennsylvania, Democratic Congressman Joe Sestak will try to upset Republican-for-decades Arlen Specter.

In Arkansas, Democratic Lieutenant Governor Bill Halter will try to upset corporate lackey Blanche Lincoln.

These two races are tremendously important to defining who and what the Democratic Party is and what we will be fighting for.

If you can volunteer for these candidates (or encourage friends and family in Pennsylvania and Arkansas to do so), that would be amazing.

Of course, if you can help with a contribution to either or both via the Expand the Map! ActBlue page as soon as possible, it will make a big impact.

Expand the Map! ActBlue page
Joe Sestak

Facebook, Twitter

Volunteer Page
Bill Halter

Facebook, Twitter

Volunteer Page
Expand the Map! ActBlue page

Polling shows that both Specter and Lincoln are at risk of – if not likely to – hand these Senate seats over to far-right-wing Republicans. (And, even if these two retain the seats, that’s not much better on many key issues.)

Congressman Sestak and Lieutenant Governor Halter winning these primaries are critical to keeping these seats in truly Democratic hands. Your support can help make that happen!  Please hop over to the Expand the Map! ActBlue page right away to make a contribution – an investment in the Democratic wing of the Democratic Party to pull out an old expression – and show your support.

Thanks SO much for any support you can provide. 40 Days.

Fundraising Quarter Ends in Ten Days!

{First, a quick plug for my blog Senate Guru.}

As we await the historic vote on health care reform, it’s important to remember that we’re just ten days away from the end of the first fundraising quarter of 2010.  The fundraising totals reported in this quarter will be pivotal to determining the tenor of many races for the rest of the year.  If there is any time to contribute, now is the time!

Please head over to the Expand the Map! ActBlue page and contribute whatever you are able to these terrific Democratic candidates for Senate.

Democrat Currently At End-of-Quarter Goal Distance to Goal
Kendrick Meek
Bill Halter
Joe Sestak
Paul Hodes
Robin Carnahan

Remember, the contribution you can make isn’t just a donation to a single candidate or political campaign.  It’s an investment against Republican obstruction (and conservaDem enabling) and an investment toward achieving that more perfect union.

ActBlue as Netroots Infrastructure

ActBlue for ActBlue

Now that everyone is back from Netroots Nation and enjoying the success of the Standing Up For The Public Option effort to reward congresscritters who have promised to vote against health care reform that doesn’t include a public plan, I’d like to take a moment of your time to talk about something really boring:

Infrastructure!  I know, even the word conjures up images of long hearings in beige rooms to determine the proper rate of increase and carrying capacity in the local water and sewer assessments.  

But infrastructure is critically important.  And ActBlue is one of the most important pieces of infrastructure for the the netroots and grassroots.  I’ve from time to time disclosed in comments that I work with ActBlue on a volunteer basis.  I’m actually on ActBlue’s Board of Directors, and I did the initial legal research to help ActBlue operate in California and Oregon state races.  

I give a lot of my time to ActBlue because I think it’s a critically important organization.  And now the board members are also doing a bit of fundraising for ActBlue, and I’d like the Calitics audience to consider contributing a bit of their hard earned cash to Actblue.

Why, you ask?  A current example is on the flip.

Without ActBlue, it would be far more difficult, if not impossible, for ordinary people to generate a campaign like currently running Standing Up For The Public Option campaign:  

– It would have taken days to locate and assemble the campaign accounts of the various congresscritters, and it would have been almost impossible to easily split up contributions among the congresscritters.

– There would have been no central location ready to collect and disburse the funds to the various congresscritters.

– There would have been no-one ready to do all of the compliance work to make sure that the proper contributor information was collected and passed on to the congresscritters.

ActBlue offers all of these services.  It gives the netroots and grassroots power, because it allows us to easily collect accountable money for candidates and campaigns.  That’s why I spend a lot of my political time working with ActBlue, and now why I’m asking you to consider giving some money to support this important piece of infrastructure:

ActBlue for ActBlue

Any contribution you can make will be greatly appreciated by me and by the ActBlue team.

Thirteen CA Legislators Rewarded by Carrots, Not Sticks Initiative

A new initiative organized by Howie Klein, Jane Hamsher, fellow Calitician Dante Atkins and myself to verbally and financially reward Congressmembers who pledge to vote down any healthcare bill that does not include the public option is catching fire today.  The objective is to use carrots as well as sticks to achieve progressive goals.  As I said in the diary kicking off this intiative at DailyKos:

Human beings are psychologically predictable creatures, much like Pavlov’s famous canine.  We do respond well to punishment, but we respond just as well if not better to positive reinforcement.  Do nothing but beat a dog with a stick, and the dog is likelier to be aggressive than lovingly loyal.  Do nothing but scream at a child, and the child will eventually fail to respond to her abusive parent.  Senators and Representatives, no matter how elevated, are still just people: the rules of psychological conditioning still apply.  If all we can do is scream at people who don’t do what we want, eventually no one will listen to us at all.

Utilizing Jane Hamsher’s signatory list, Howie Klein set up an ActBlue page called They Took the Pledge.  Spurred on by Jane Hamsher’s post, my dkos diary, Dante’s dkos diary, and Howie Klein’s efforts at Blue America PAC, the online effort has raised over $60,000 since this morning, becoming ActBlue’s top fundraising page.  And the media has begun to take note, with stories on CBS Online, Politico, and The Plum Line.

On the list are 13 deserving CA Legislators who could use your dollars and/or words of encouragement:

Judy Chu (CA-32)

Sam Farr (CA-17)

Bob Filner (CA-51)

Mike Honda (CA-15)

Barbara Lee (CA-09)

Grace Napolitano (CA-38)

Laura Richardson (CA-37)

Lucille Roybal-Allard (CA-34)

Linda Sanchez (CA-39)

Jackie Speier (CA-12)

Maxine Waters (CA-35)

Diane Watson (CA-33)

Lynn Woolsey (CA-06)

If you have the resources, please consider donations to our excellent California legislators.  For those who can’t chip in, DFA has a thank you action item to thank our healthcare heroes.

With an approach that uses more carrots and less sticks, hopefully we can encourage others in California and across the country to join these brave progressive leaders.

PA-Sen: Netroots Overwhelmingly Support a Draft Sestak Effort

{First, a cheap plug for my blog Senate Guru.}

Netroots for Sestak As many of you know, over the last five days, the Progressive Change Campaign Committee, in partnership with a number of progressive organizations and blogs including Senate Guru, asked those in the netroots, “Should a Draft Sestak movement be created to take on Sen. Arlen Specter in the Pennsylvania Democratic primary?”

The results are in and they are overwhelming.  85% of Pennsylvanian respondents and 86% of respondents nationally want Democratic Congressman Joe Sestak to challenge Arlen Specter in the 2010 Democratic Senate primary.  The poll has even gotten the attention of Congressman Sestak, as the PCCC points out:

“I am honored that so many of you took the time to vote in the recent grassroots Straw Poll. Let me tell you, I and many others were paying attention. If I decide to run it will be in large measure because of the grassroots energy of so many people like you. Until I and my family make that decision, please accept my thanks and my best wishes as you continue be active participants in our people-powered democracy. Thank you so very much!”

Due to such an overwhelming response, a Draft Sestak Fund has been created on ActBlue.  To contribute and further encourage Congressman Sestak to enter the race, click on the image below:

Draft Sestak Fund

If you need any additional motivation to contribute to this effort to draft a real Democrat to oppose Specter in the primary, consider Specter’s actions since announcing his Party switch:

1) Specter opposed the Obama budget.

2) Specter opposed the “cramdown” mortgage/bankruptcy reform, siding with banks over families.

3) Specter reiterated his opposition to the Employee Free Choice Act.

4) Specter reiterated his opposition to President Obama’s nomination of Dawn Johnsen to the Office of Legal Counsel.

5) Specter announced his support for Republican Norm Coleman over Democratic Senator-elect Al Franken in Minnesota’s Senate race.

6) Specter promoted a website that appeared to raise money for cancer research but, in actuality, simply raised money for his campaign.

7) Specter denied reports that he told President Obama that he would be a “loyal Democrat” despite multiple reporters sticking to their story.

The netroots have displayed overwhelming support for Congressman Sestak to take on recently-Republican Arlen Specter.  Help the effort by contributing to the Draft Sestak Fund.

ActBlue Enters Municipal Races in San Francisco, 3 Other Cities

As a San Franciscan, I am thrilled that ActBlue has now entered the municipal races in San Francisco, along with Cleveland, Boston, and Cook County, IL.  I’ve always been an ActBlue evangelizer, and everywhere I go in San Francisco I am asked how local candidates can work with ActBlue.  And up until this point, I’ve always had to say, sorry, but no.

But, with today’s announcement of a new pilot program, all that changes.  I will personally be notifying several friends that are running for Board of Supervisors and other races in the City. Hopefully, this pilot will eventually be expanded across the state and nation.

If you are a local candidate in San Francisco, you can sign up your campaign at the ActBlue Setup Site.  And since this is for San Francisco, if you are thinking of signing up, there is a good chance that I know you.  Give me a shout if I can help.

If you haven’t used ActBlue before, you will be pleasantly suprised at the power of the toolset. It allows you to not only simplify reporting, but also to empower your supporters to help raise money for the campaign. ActBlue has enabled netroots and grassroots activists to collectively donate over $50 million between 2004 and June 2008. The numbers have only climbed since.

With the constant pressure to nurture new leaders under our ridiculously short term limits law, it is critical to build a strong bench through local elections.  This pilot is an exceptional opportunity to do just that.  

ActBlue Looking for Your Ideas

“I believe candidates with strong, sound stances deserve our support, and this is a race where your dollars can make the difference. Please make a contribution to this critical cause.”

Sound familiar? If you have any experience with our fundraising pages you will have seen this (and perhaps fallen asleep to it) a few too many times. It is the default text for ActBlue’s fundraising pages. ActBlue’s customizable fundraising pages allow progressive activists to raise money for the best Democratic candidates out there easily and effectively, and the fifty state blog network has taken advantage of this feature to support state and national candidates with customized, targeted pages. But while the original blurb did help Democrats use our pages, we’re in year 5 of ActBlue, and this is definitely year 3-4 material. We’ll be working with thousands of new fundraisers this cycle, and we want to make sure they have the best language. And, well, this isn’t it.

So, we need ideas.

We know you’re best equipped to know what language will appeal to your friends and neighbors, so we wanted to give all of you an opportunity to create the next fundraising page blurb. If we pick yours, it will show up automatically on almost every fundraising page created on ActBlue. To show our appreciation, we’ll send the winner and two runners-up an ActBlue Ice Cream Scoop! (No, we’re not kidding. And trust us, it’s a high quality scoop – The Original Zeroll.)

Okay, here are the guidelines:

  1. The blurb must be fewer than 50 words.
  2. It has to be fairly generic (no specific issues or names), but still get across the basic reason for the fundraising page. This is something our current text does fairly well, if you are looking for an example.
  3. If you can make it apply to pages for candidates and/or committees, all the better. If not, at least make it appeal to people looking to donate to candidates.
  4. We are Democrats, and our pages are for Democrats. If your message would appeal to Democrats, that would probably earn points.
  5. Humor is a big plus, but only that universal humor that works for everyone.
  6. Effective fundraising is personal. Think about what kind of language would help you be a better fundraiser, and think about why your friends and family might feel compelled to give.
  7. All entries must be received by 3/25.

Fill out your entry form right here! Thank you for your participation!

ActBlue is active in all 50 states, helping Democrats raise money for their chosen candidate from the comfort of their living rooms and offices. We believe that your voice should be heard everywhere from your state capitol to the Senate floor, and we’re working to make sure it is. Please support our work with a $15 recurring contribution today!

A Dream of Peace (CA Congressmembers Work To Ease Gaza Humanitarian Crisis)

In response to the recent Gaza War, a fundraising page was set up on ActBlue.com in order to contribute to elected officials who have been supportive of the peoples of Israel and Palestine.  The page is called “A Dream of Peace: Justice and Equality for The People of Israel and Palestine”, and can be found here.

The mission of the page states “All of the people of the Holy Land need to live in peace and security. We need to support and elect candidates that are willing to stand up for the rights of the citizens of Israel and Palestine. These candidates support measures to stop violence, increase economic and humanitarian aid, actively engage in negotiation, and promote co-existence among these two Peoples.”  

Today, Rep. John Olver (MA-01) sent a “Dear Colleague” letter to Secretary Of State Hillary Clinton requesting that the State Department release funds to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) for reconstuction and humanitarian assistance in Gaza.  The letter was signed by a total of 60 Democratic House members, including many from the California delegation.

The CA signatories included Lois Capps (CA-23), Sam Farr (CA-17), Barbara Lee (CA-09), Pete Stark (CA-13), Lynn Woolsey (CA-06), Maxine Waters (CA-35), Diane Watson (CA-33), Bob Filner (CA-51), George Miller (CA-07), Loretta Sanchez (CA-47), Mike Thomspon (CA-01), Anna Eshoo (CA-14), Jackie Speier (CA-12), and Michael Honda (CA-15).  The full text of the letter, as well as the full list of signatories can be found here.

These California Congressmembers, as well as the rest of the signatories, are all strong supporters of both the Israeli and Palestinian peoples.  They are speaking out to help lessen the humanitarian crisis in Gaza and to commend President Obama on his early committment to the peace process between the Israelis and the Palestinians.  We need to help these candidates as they face pressure from the anti-peace community.  Please visit our fundraising page and contribute to any (or all) of our candidates.

In peace.

Final Day Push – Contribute to the Calitics Match

((I’m told that Act Blue is back up and running, so you can donate now.  And we’re almost to our goal! $180 left! Who will put us over the top?) – promoted by Robert in Monterey)

Goal Thermometer

Thanks to everyone who has supported our five candidates in the Calitics Match thus far.  We’re past halfway to our goal, and Debbie Cook has well surpassed our $500 match (way to go!).  

Today is crunch time.  It’s the final day before the end of the third quarter, which is the reporting deadline for federal candidates.  This is the best opportunity to make your donations the most meaningful; the quarterly fundraising announcements are key to gauge support, and money put into field and messaging now will pay bigger dividends in the future than a quick cash infusion at the last minute.  Please support these candidates and Calitics will match you dollar for dollar.

The Yacht Party Republicans still think you’re stupid.  They believe they can hide behind the gated communities they’ve created through gerrymandering, and that Sarah Palin’s presence at the top of the ticket will lift their hopes.  No, really:

A statewide poll this week underscored the effect Palin has had on the Republican base. According to the Public Policy Institute of California, GOP satisfaction with their presidential choice has doubled since Palin joined the ticket. Unfortunately for McCain, that has not translated into gains against Democrat Barack Obama in California, which has gone to the Democratic presidential candidate in the last four presidential elections.

Still, state Republicans were rejoicing at the possibilities. Thomas G. Del Beccaro, the state party vice chairman, said new volunteers were streaming in faster than at any time since the 2003 recall election. Republicans, he said, were hopeful that a resulting increase in voters would help the party in legislative and congressional races where they might not have been as competitive otherwise.

This is bravado.  The wingnut base wasn’t going to stay away from a Presidential election.  It’s the growing decline-to-state base, along with increased Democratic registration statewide, that has the potential to sink the Yacht Party just as Sarah Palin’s favorable ratings have sank as voters face the terrifying prospect of her in a position of power.  This is the real shift in the electorate:

Since the two parties largely settled on presidential nominees in April, voter rolls have increased by roughly 19,500 – or 2 percent – in Placer, El Dorado, Sacramento and Yolo counties, according to new figures from the California secretary of state’s office. Democrats accounted for 10,500 of those new voters. Just 2,400 were Republicans. Most of the others declined to state an allegiance.

The regional numbers mirror a statewide trend. California’s Democratic voter rolls have increased by 181,118 since April while the number of Republicans grew by 6,823. Republicans saw a net loss of registered voters in 25 counties, including a loss of more than 15,000 in conservative Orange County. Similar trends are playing out nationally, in several battleground states.

You can see the data for yourself.  Particularly in this financial crisis, Californians are ready for a new direction away from failed conservative policies.

All that stands between our five candidates and victory in November is making sure they have the resources to compete.  We can help provide that today.  Please visit the Calitics Match Act Blue page and give what you can.  We’ll double your donation to make it that much more meaningful.

Do you live in CA-03? We need YOU

Because they say Charity begins at home and all politics are local, I have volunteered to serve as the Internet Outreach Co-ordinator for California 3rd Congressional District’s Democratic Candidate – Dr. Bill Durston – for the rest of this electoral cycle.

Here’s Bill Durston’s Progressive Positions on various issues.

Dan Lungren – hard to tell apart from Dooltittle – is the Republican incumbent we are trying to replace – with your help.

If you live in this district and have a FaceBook Profile (if you don’t, consider creating one), please add BILL DURSTON to your “Friends” list.

Are you on Myspace? Bill Durston is there, too, and would appreciate your joining us there.

I am very reluctant to impose upon your generosity here (knowing how much you have all individually done to date), but I would like to request that you PLEASE help by making a DONATION (however little) NOW. TODAY. To the Durston for Congress Campaign. I will consider this a VERY PERSONAL favor, and I will be very grateful for the generosity and support.

If you don’t live in the district but would still like to support us in whatever capacity, we welcome all the assistance you can offer.

Equally important (or even more so, given our various commitments), if you are scheduling or participating in any outreach/GOTV/Voter Registration/etc events anywhere in the CA-03 area, please PROMOTE BILL DURSTON in (and invite the Campaign to) ALL your events.

Let there be no confusion, my new undertaking will NOT interfere with my passionate support and advocacy for our Presidential Candidate – Barack Obama. It will not dissipate my energy and enthusiasm to see us elect our candidate of Hope and Change, and, NO, it will not stop me from filling your inboxes with my occasional SPAM.

On the contrary, I believe that my closer relationship with the Durston for Congress Campaign will enable me to better contribute to the larger cause of not only electing Barack Obama as President, but also electing a MORE AND BETTER Democratic majority to help him actualize his stated goals, once elected. CA-03 is a “lean-Republican” district gerrymandered for Republican candidates, but that has not dissuaded our immensely-qualified, Vietnam Combat Veteran, Emergency Room Physician and Local Resident Dr. Bill Durston from stepping up the plate and answering the call to help us take back our Democracy from the vagabonds who have been despoiling it for the past eight years.

Dr. Durston has put himself forward to champion a cause on our behalf, and I feel that we have a responsibility to rally round him and help him overcome the seemingly insurmountable odds of defeating one of the worst Bush-enablers in Congress today. After all, overcoming insurmountable odds is what we are known for. With your able assistance and support, and your warm welcome of Dr. Durston into the “Yes, We Can” tent, I am very sure that we can collectively achieve the “impossible”.

Please join me in this quest.

Can’t DONATE money? No problem – we need other things as equally valuable as cash – PLEASE VOLUNTEER HERE

Let’s welcome Dr. Durston into our fold, and let’s adopt a BETTER Democrat to send to Congress.