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Chair Lurelle Robbins speaking on Basic Income

Statement to the 26 September 2020 PDX for Basic Income Event

The Democratic Party of Multnomah County, Mission and Vision states – 

“We envision and Demand a government designed by the people and for the benefit of the people.”

At this moment we demand a return of the dividends due, we the people, who have over the past 40 years contributed our hard earned funds and delayed our profits as the money has been shifted and shared upwards to the wealthy among us.  Trickle down never trickled down – rather it provided mechanisms by which our money flowed up to the wealthiest among us.     $2000 NOW is the beginning of the return on our investment.

  • With houselessness and evictions and unemployment on the rise
  • With too many people struggling even before the current crisis as a result of 40 years of decreasing wages and increasing disparity
  • With CEO’s and the dramatically wealthy like Jeff Bezos and Amazon, like Bill Gates and Microsoft, like Google and Facebook and Home Depot and Fauci and Trump in control of our narratives

We the people are left struggling. If we are making zero or $20,000 or 50K or even 300K it is nothing compared to the trillions that of dollars flowing into the hands of Jeff Bezos and friends.

It is time to demand $2000 NOW and I call upon each of us to spread this message to our friends and neighbors across the country and to our legislators.  When an uprising of people and their demands and calls for relief truly get loud – then and only then will something happen. $2000 NOW.

Congress struggles to pass an 1800 page bill that would dole out money at the top and mollify the lobbyists, but what about, we the people who have been funding their largesse?

We believe that 1800 pages are not needed to solve this crisis.  We can say it in one sentence.

“The US Treasury will disburse $2000/ mo to every US resident for a 12 month period to provide relief to the people and to stimulate the whole economy.”

$2000 NOW    $2000 NOW    Today we are here to demand action and to spread the message of uprising for change.  But first we must recognize that the Native Americans and American Descendants of Slavery have endured this struggle far longer , for 100s of years, and let’s remember that reparations must be made to create a more equitable future for all.

The $2000 NOW dividends will repay us all for the 40 years of declining wages and theft or shift of our wealth upwards.

Let’s not forget that the 2008 crisis lead to a bailout of the banks, who then thanked us by taking many of our homes through foreclosure, only to resell them to wealthy investors like Blacstone and others.    DID WE GET OUR DIVIDEND – NO!   IT is time for $2000 NOW.

Now with covid and then the fires across Oregon and with the struggles for justice in our streets our people, our neighbors and our small businesses are shutters, houselessness increases and Bezos and the wealth get trillions of dollars in rewards.   IT IS TIME FOR $2000 NOW

With the top 3 families currently having the wealth of the bottom 50% or 1 ½ billion people we have given away our income and our wealth and we must demand a return of our investment.

Demand the 1 sentence bill.  Demand $2000 NOW.   Check out HB 6496 and SB 3784 and make them known by calling for action.   Spend your money locally, grow mainstreet and our neighbors not wall street.

Please join me in thanking Chelsea Wilkinson and PDX for Basic Income and Mark Nerys, who leads our Basic Rights study group for all their efforts.  I would also like to thank Neil Goodman, Mitch Rofsky – who is taking this message to the Biden transition planning team and to Faith Ruffing, Bobbi Yambasu and our Congresspersons Bonamici and Blumenauer for co-sponsoring HB 6496 

$2000 NOW

www.multdems.org/2000now

Summary: H.R.6496 — 116th Congress (2019-2020)All Information (Except Text)

There is one summary for H.R.6496. Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

Shown Here:

Introduced in House (04/14/2020)

Emergency Money for the People Act

This bill directs the Department of the Treasury to make monthly payments during a specified 12-month period to certain citizens and noncitizens of the United States and their dependent children. The amount of such payments shall be $2,000 each month ($4,000 for married couples filing joint returns) and additional amounts for their dependent children. The monthly amount shall be phased out for individuals whose adjusted gross income exceeds $130,000 ($260,000 for joint return filers). The payments must begin within 14 days of the enactment of this bill.

The bill allows such monthly payments for individuals who are not U.S. citizens or residents, but have been physically present in the United States continuously since January 27, 2020 (the effective date of the public health emergency resulting from the COVID-19 [i.e. coronavirus disease 2019] pandemic), and continue to be physically present in the United States throughout the duration of the payment period.

If Treasury does not have sufficient tax return information to make payments to an eligible individual, it shall consult with the Department of Veteran Affairs and the Social Security Administration and any agency making pension or annuity payments to such individual.

SB 3784 Monthly Economic Crisis Support Act

The coronavirus pandemic and the accompanying economic crisis are unprecedented challenges confronting American families. Workers across the country are losing their incomes and struggling to make ends meet. Bills are continuing to come and people are finding it impossible to pay rent and put food on the table. Families need immediate help.The single check Americans will receive from the CARES Act is not enough. As our nation continues to grapple with the effects of this pandemic, families across the country will continue to hurt. Congress a responsibility to make sure that people aren’t left behind.Senators Kamala D. Harris (D-CA), Bernie Sanders (I-VT), and Ed Markey (D-MA) introduced theMonthly Economic Crisis Support Act, 

which would establish a rebate payment program that would provide $2,000 to every individual, including children and other dependents, until this crisis is over.

TheMonthly Economic Crisis Support Act:

•Provides a monthly $2,000 check to every individual with an income below $120,000 throughout and for three months following the coronavirus pandemic.

Married couples who file jointly would receive $4,000.o$2,000 per child up to three children

Retroactive to March•Ensures that every U.S. resident receives a payment, regardless of whether or not they have filed a recent tax return or have a social security number

Uses the data from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Supplemental Security Income, (SSI), Medicare and housing assistance programs

•Forbids debt collectors from seizing the rebate payments

•Ensures the homeless and foster youth receive payments

"She taught us courage" portrait of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg

In Memory and Honor of the Service of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg

How do we define courage? 

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was courage personified. From her earliest efforts to gain equal opportunities for women, to her many career accomplishments, to her strength in standing up to extremists on all sides, and in facing the reality of her illness with her choice to pursue the most extreme treatments

Ginsburg persisted on a steady path, proactively seeking justice and equal rights for women but never stooping to pettiness, recrimination, or unprofessionalism. She became a powerful dissenting voice and a role model for younger generations of women.

As Democrats we can honor The Notorious R.B.G. and grasp a bit of that courage to devote some small part of our lives and time to carry on the battle for justice and equal opportunity for all.

Can we, as fellow Dems, reach out to grasp just a bit of that courage? Can we each individually devote just a part of our lives and time to similarly carry on the ongoing battle for equal opportunities for all, for justice, for all our democratic ideals?

In her memory, in her honor!

Ginsburg in 1977

We still need your vote. It still hurts if you don't vote.

“I live in a blue county in a blue state, why should I vote?”

I live in a blue county/state, why should I vote?

Why…because your vote can count twice! No, not because the President illegally called on North Carolinians to vote twice! Because we can only successfully defeat Trump and Trumpism by building the popular vote to new heights! We must sweep Trump out of office! You know it will take more than a nudge – even a fully legal one! Only by turning out the biggest Dem popular vote ever, can we hope to hold off Trump’s inevitably corrupt challenges to November’s outcome.

You may have heard this number of 3 million. That is how many more popular votes that Hillary Clinton got than Donald Trump. These numbers continue to be significant. We KNOW that more Americans wanted Clinton to be president than Trump.

There are other elections that matter to your life, too!

Our statewide offices in Oregon, such as the Secretary of State and Governor, have a huge impact on our lives. These elections can be very close. Your vote matters! If it didn’t matter, the powers that be would not be so interested in trying to disenfranchise you and convince you not to vote.

We must work together to max the Dem vote by talking to all our friends, neighbors, work acquaintances, Zoom buddies and all to be sure to vote!

Resources

Check your registration and make any address changes online. Learn more about voting in Oregon with our video.

No matter where you live across the country, you can check out vote.org to check your registration and find out how to vote.

What will be on your ballot? With all the intersecting districts, that can be complicated. Ballotpedia has a pretty effective resource to figure it out, though!

There is a way to get involved that works for you: Find out about local, state, and national projects at https://multdems.org/2020hub.

Why I Am a Democrat: Joel Barker

Five Questions for Joel Barker, Communications Director of the Democratic Party of Multnomah County

Joel Barker runs Lions Way, a digital marketing company for technology companies. A lifelong Oregonian, he grew up in the central part of the state and moved to Portland in 2001. Since 2018, he has spent countless hours in his role as communications director of the Multnomah County Democrats, gathering information from the diverse active groups and carving out messages that will resonate with the membership at large. His management and organizational skills have come into play more than ever this election year, as many volunteers are signing up to help communicate the Party’s mission and work. 

When downtown Portland was rocked with nightly protests this summer, the New York Times quoted Barker as observing the mostly peaceful nature of the Black Lives Matter protests. Barker believes that our city is being used as a political game piece for the president in an election year. “It’s really terrible… I want America to understand how terrible it is to feel like a city you love is being occupied by your own federal government, because that’s how it feels.”

Joel is a dedicated Multnomah County Democrat. The Digest asked him a few questions to figure out why:

1. How did you become involved in the Democratic Party of Multnomah County?

I woke up November 9, 2016 and realized that I hadn’t done enough, that the nation and Democracy that I adored required people to staff it. Before, I had volunteered for this campaign or that, knocking on doors or making calls. I remembered reading Michael Moore who talked about how important county and precinct politics was, so I looked into becoming a precinct committee person (PCP). I liked the election process, seeing my name on a ballot and all.

Becoming a PCP really cemented my responsibility to make an impact. The sprawl of committees and projects in MultDems meant I could find any number of ways to feel effective. Communications was a natural spot and I got to be a part of a great team, led by my predecessor, who built out our 2018 website.

2. What are some of the things you do as the communications officer?

The responsibility is to oversee the “internal and external communications” of the party. That means keeping the website and social media lively, but also helping the passionate work of our study groups and other committees to get exposure.

We represent a quarter of a million Democrats, a diverse group. We do our best to consider how we can let them know how they can be empowered and for their values to be reflected in the party and our candidates.

3. Who influenced your decision to become involved?

I call him The Servant. I know others call him The Orange Menace. I can’t excuse myself for not leaving everything on the table right now. I am here to bring our coalition together, speak the powerful compelling truth of our communities, and get people excited about voting.

4. What’s making you hopeful right now?

Our candidates. Joe Biden is the big tent soul that can hear our diverse communities. Shemia Fagan is a powerhouse who understands Oregon and will help shape it going forward. Our senators and representatives have proven themselves brave, smart, and dedicated. 

Personally, my herding dog Olive keeps me in line.

5. Do Democrats have a communications challenge right now?

Not right now, because we are united.

We have in the past and we will again. I thought it was purely a national issue until I got involved locally. Now I understand that the passion and diversity of the Democratic coalition requires thoughtful, heartfelt language. It is not easy to find the words true for everyone in the room.

I hope that we can do this hard work of staying together and turning enthusiasm into votes up until January 2021. Let’s restore order so that civil dialogue about tough subjects can start again.

Note: The author of this article is Beth Blenz-Clucas

The Chair’s comments opening September 2020 Central Committee

  IT IS SMOKY,  AS YOU KNOW!

We are experiencing what may seem like a nuclear endtimes.  Our friends and families suffer from smoke and or fire while we have:

A President incapable of empathy, truth or leading this nation

A smoke filled city and county with friends and family at risk.  The result of climate change and resulting fires has caused our Governor and Mayor to declare a state of emergency.

A city with citizens willing to stand up for freedom from government overreach, for freedom of speech and for black lives matter and against police brutality.

A pandemic and an economic disaster

Feelings, created by President Trump’s failure to lead, of distress, mistrust, anger, and overwhelm.

TOGETHER, we must and will create hope through action.  We will Get Out The Vote and elect our Democratic neighbors that are running to make us better.

This week we have had in depth conversations about:

Sexual harassment 

Slate cards and neighborhood leaders

Comedy

Contract with Black America

$2000 Now and PDX Basic Income

Legislative and platform alignment

Among other issues of justice and elections

And we are planning for 3 BIG EVENTS that require your participation:

  • The November 3rd Election and GOTV in 54 days
  • Our slate card program and GOTV

All of the activities are designed by volunteers whom we should thank often for the benefit of all of us.  Please participate in the FUN and the important work of electing our good Democratic neighbors and Shemia Fagan (SOS) and Joe Biden and Kamala Harris on November 3rd, 2020. 

Our country depends on YOU!

Multnomah Democrats: Reading Group- Anti-racist Focus: 2020-2021

Organizing meetingMonday, September 14, 2020, 4:00 PM,  RSVP to dannelled@mac.com to get ZOOM invite.

   Convener:  Dannelle D. Stevens, PCP and Neighborhood Leader, District 41

   Objectives: Bring calendars to set regular monthly meetings for now…

                              October, November, December

                       Peruse this book list from Ibram X. Kendi’s Atlantic magazine article. Listed below.

https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2019/02/antiracist-syllabus-governor-ralph-northam/582580

                       Be ready to decide on first three books for October, November, December

Books recommended by Ibram X. Kendi and Georganne Wingerson           

Georganne Wingerson recommends Rising Out of Hatred, The Awakening of a Former White Nationalist by local author Eli Saslow.  There are some fascinating videos of author and subject done after the book was written that are worth viewing.  I wouldn’t put it first (written by a white about a white), but a fascinating history and read.

Ibrahim’s recommended books

Central Committee September 10, 2020 Zoom Meeting for PCPs RSVP for Details multdems.org/SeptCC

September 2020 Central Committee Meeting Thursday 10 September

The Central Committee of the Democratic Party of Multnomah County meets

Thursday, September 10, 2020

ONLINE ZOOM Meeting

RSVP HERE for details

Without the endorsement process we went through in August, this will be a very different meeting!

The meeting convenes at 6:30 and is called to order at 7.

The meeting is open to members of the Central Committee (PCP’s)

You must RSVP for the CC meeting above.

Our schedule is as follows:

6:30 PM Registration and Sign In to be credentialed. There will be no break out rooms.

7:00 PM Business Meeting

Meet Our Democratic Candidates

Please read and be prepared to vote on the question:

Shall the Democratic Party of Multnomah County endorse this Contract with Black America

PCP Appointments. Meet the candidates for appointment to fill PCP vacancies. The CC votes to accept or reject these candidates.

9:00 PM Scheduled end of Business Meeting

The CC working agenda

Precinct Committee Persons are The Central Committee

Our action determines elections. We need to not just affect the critical national elections but work for candidates who can overcome the anti-democratic Republican Walkouts here in Oregon. Local and national: there is volunteer action that suits you. We can help connect you. Visit multdems.org/2020hub to find out.

There remain vacant PCP positions across the county. Invite Democrats to join us! Apply to fill vacant positions here.

Regular monthly donations to the Party support all the things we do to work locally for our communities.

Oh wait, did you say you wanted lawn signs?

Our own Lisa Dorn has designed our Oregons for Biden Harris lawn signs. Order now to get in on the first batch arriving September 12! Biden Harris Bumper stickers and MultDems shirts, too!

Thank you for everything you do.

Sincerely,

Lurelle Robbins, Chair

The Democratic Party of Multnomah County

chair@multdems.org

The Democratic Party of Multnomah County strives to be welcoming and accessible to all. If you or someone you know require ADA or any other accommodations to attend one of our events please contact us to tell us how to make your attendance possible. admin@multdems.org

“Governor, to help keep the pandemic under control, we ask you to release all those prisoners that do not threaten public safety.”

Contact the Governor: Safety in Oregon Prisons During the Pandemic

Help free those threatened by COVID.

Support our Resolution 2020–8 Safety in Oregon Prisons During Pandemic 

“Governor, to help keep the pandemic under control, we ask you to release all those prisoners that do not threaten public safety.”

Help bring about prisoner safety called for in the Resolution overwhelmingly passed on June 11 by MultDems Central Committee.

Please write and mail a postcard to Governor Brown or send a message through the form on her website.

Key points to cover

  • Thank you for protecting Oregon residents during the pandemic.
  • Oregon prisoners not safe because social distancing in Oregon prisons requires early release of  about 5700 prisoners.
  • The scheduled release of 400 who will finish their sentences within the next 2 months is good, but inadequate.
  • Many prisoners can be released without jeopardizing public safety.
  • Here are top categories to consider for early release:
    • People whose sentence will end within next 6 months
    • Elderly and disabled
    • People convicted of non-violent crimes
    • Those in danger of COVID due to medical conditions
  • Prisoners with mandatory sentences, who otherwise would be eligible for early release, should be furloughed until pandemic ends.

Post to

https://www.oregon.gov/gov/Pages/share-your-opinion.aspx 

Mail to

Governor Kate Brown
Office of the Governor
900 Court Street NE, Suite 254
Salem, OR 97301-4047 

Additional Information

Governor Brown did decide in June to release 57 medically endangered prisoners. But this of course had no safety effect on the rest of the approximately 14,500 Oregon prisoners, since, according to the Oregon Department of Corrections, it would take release of about 5,700 to allow for real social distancing in our 14 prisons. DOC can do only so much to keep the current environment safe. 

One prisoner died in May, and 4 more died in August. There have been at least 636 cases of coronavirus, and at least 185 prison staff have tested positive for the virus.

Finally in late August the Governor has decided to allow early release of 350-400 more prisoners, mainly about half of the individuals who are scheduled to be released anyway within the next two months, with irrational criteria used to select who is eligible. It is not based on either community safety or housing available for the released individual.

Even if you already lobbied the Governor on this, do it again, so that she will know that releasing 400 more will not be sufficient.

MultDems Statement on violence and protest "We join with Black leaders in condemning the violence of agitators who claim they are committing violent acts in BLM's name. It does not serve Democracy or the causes of justice."

Multnomah Democrats statement on violence and protest

We support the work of the Black Lives Matter movement and its mission of re-imagining police and ending systemic racism. 

We join with Black leaders in condemning the violence of agitators who claim they are committing violent acts in BLM’s name. It does not serve Democracy or the causes of justice. 

We condemn both the police over-reaction and the right wing violence in our community, both of which have gone ignored for years, damaging our communities.

We wholeheartedly support and unanimously endorsed the ballot measure to change how the Portland Police Bureau is held accountable.

Rep. Defazio chained to a USPS mailbox.

The Case of the Missing Mailboxes

Last week, Democrats sounded the alarm about the apparent attempts by the Trump Administration and the USPS to cut back on staffing, hours and accessibility ahead of the November elections. Willamette Week confirmed that mail boxes were being removed around the state. By August 18th, the US Postmaster announced that cutback plans were suspended until after the election. We recommend that all Democrats and voters complete and mail (or drop off at an official drop box) their ballots well ahead of November 3rd, to ensure that they are counted! Oregon is one of few states allowing voters to track their ballots. And, the Election Integrity Study Group will be our local watchdog in November.