PURPOSE OF STATE PAGES – GRASSROOTS ACTION
“All politics are local” Tip O’Neill
The purpose of the individual state pages is simple – to provide a bridge between national politics and the state and local politics. Even though Oregon is a “blue” state, is it is essential that all Oregonians participate in politics now. We have a very Republican, one-sided, national government now coupled with very serious leadership problems. We need different people in office at the federal, state and local level.
Context and Following the Tea Party Example
The Tea Party erupted on the political scene in 2009 and provides an excellent example of how to take part in state and local politics. In addition to winning the White House and the Congress, the Republicans have secured 31 governor positions, have gerrymandered the country so they have “locked up” many districts for Republicans. For good measure there is a concerted Republican effort to restrict voting in many states with laws that are intended to prevent voter fraud, even as there is no evidence for any fraud.
In a nutshell
- The Tea Party protests were a series of protests throughout the United States that began in early 2009. The protests were part of the larger political Tea Party movement.
- Most Tea Party activities have since been focused on opposing efforts of the Obama Administration, and on recruiting, nominating, and supporting candidates for state and national elections.
Following the Tea Party playbook and other standard organizing approaches is all we need to do. The Indivisible Guide and advice on acting locally provides and excellent playbook for starting.
WHAT TO DO?
Make the commitment to get involved to the extent you can. That means simply
- Write, call and communicate with your US senators and representative of your district without fail, even to tell them that they are doing a great job.
- Donate to political organizations, candidates and parties
- Join a group, a party, a movement in your state and participate.
- Support and become an advocate for a cause you care about.
FIELDING AND SUPPORTING CANDIDATES IS ESSENTIAL – not just Oregon but nationwide
The biggest question is always knowing who is running, when they are running and what they need to be successful. The state pages will answer those questions. The recent political upheaval has awakened the population so there is a lot more specific information available. Our next step is to build a strong, interlocking network of information that is based on technology but also on personal relationship.
Below are two websites that are essential tools for grassroots action — giving you the tools to find everything about politics, influencing, lobbying and contribution in your state. Both of these are reputable sources based on data and facts.
“Ballotpedia is the online encyclopedia of American politics and elections. Our goal is to inform people about politics by providing accurate and objective information about politics at all levels of government. We are firmly committed to neutrality; here’s why. Ballotpedia’s articles are 100 percent written by our professional staff.”
Follow the Money is a database of information about money. It displays who contributes to what, how much, how much over time to candidates, parties, ballot measures. This is a treasure trove of information and enables one to “follow the money” a quote from the movie All the President’s Men. There is noting more important in this environment than “following the money.” The president is steeped in conflicts of interest, multiple lawsuits, continued engagement in his business, refusal to release his tax returns and other unknowns. Clearly this president does not want you to follow his money. The Cabinet is stacked with former Goldman Sachs employees, Exxon Mobile executive and others that are openly hostile to the agencies they are leading. The tax cut for health care is intended to benefit the wealthy almost exclusively.
OREGON’S U.S SENATORS AND REPRESENTATIVE TO THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
- Meet Senator Ron Wyden (D) https://www.wyden.senate.gov
- Meet Senator Jeff Merkley (D) https://www.merkley.senate.gov
- Meet Representative Earl Blumenauer (D) https://blumenauer.house.gov
- Meet Representative Suzanne Bonamici (D) http://bonamici.house.gov
- Meet Representative Peter DeFazio (D) http://defazio.house.gov
- Meet Representative Greg Walden (R) https://walden.house.gov
- Meet Representative Kurt Schrader (D) https://schrader.house.gov
OREGON VOTES — 2016 PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION
Oregon voting pattern for the 2016 presidential followed the standard pattern that was seen throughout the nation. Voters in the cities, along the I-5 corridor through Lane County, with the exception of Linn and Marion Counties, voted blue. All other counties voted red, some by sizable percentages.
Map below from Politico 2016 Oregon Election map
“This page is about redistricting in Oregon. Following the 2010 Census, Oregon retained its five Congressional seats, falling short of an additional seat by a slim margin. Despite its static level of representation, Oregon had significant internal population shifts to consider. Most of its growth came in the soft Republican areas around Salem and the Democratic suburbs of Portland. The more solidly conservative eastern part of the state, already sparsely populated, lost population. Other locales, such as the city of Bend, grew at a clip.
Oregon’s legislature has not completed redistricting since the 1950s. In each successive decade, lawmakers failed to reach a compromise, and the process has been completed by courts and the Secretary of State. The 30-30 split between the major parties gave some hope in 2011, but the messy history of legislatively-controlled redistricting could not be overlooked.”
NATIONAL AND LOCAL ORGANIZATIONS
This website is focused on a grassroots effort to increase the number of Democrats and Progressives in office at the federal, state and local levels. This perspective is based on facts, personal values and beliefs about the role of government, and belief and trust in the American government. Conservative organizations are included at the bottom of the page to provide sources for the most reliable conservative organizations. There are many sources of information from a conservative perspective that are highly ethical and reliable. However, there are many conservative and alt-right news sources and organizations that are unreliable, advance conspiracy theories and make many assertions that are not true. There are some left-leaning organizations that act the same way but they have a much smaller audience, are debunked routinely and are not in the mainstream news. News sites such as Brietbart News, a very definite alt-right site, are much more prominent because of Steve Bannon’s role as strategic advisor to the president. National Enquirer is also on the rise in influence, likely related to the president’s long term friendship with the editor.
NATIONAL ORGANIZING ORGANIZATIONS often with LOCAL CHAPTERS
- AARP — American Association of Retired People
- National Democratic Committee
- Oregon Democratic Party
- Multnomah County Democrats
- Clackamas County Democrats
TO THE LEFT
- ACLU Oregon
- Basic Rights Oregon
- Black Lives Matter
- Causa Oregon
- Ceasefire Oregon
- Center for Media and Democracy
- Credo Action
- Daily KOS
- Daily KOS Morning Digest of state political races
- Earthshare Oregon
- Free Press
- Friends of the Earth
- Mom’s Demand Action
- Move On
- NARAL Pro Choice America
- Oregon League of Conservation Voters
- Oregon Progressive Party
- Organizing for Action — OFA.USA\
- Our Revolution
- Planned Parenthood
- Planned Parenthood Advocates
- Progressive Democrats of America
- Rural Organizing Project Oregon
- Sierra Club
- Sierra Club — Oregon Chapter
- Working Families Party
TO THE RIGHT
- American Enterprise Institute
- Much more to come
The Pacific Northwest’s historical attic is full of artifacts
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