Wednesday June 15th there was a gathering of Democrats at the Westlake Deli and it was a remarkable occurrence. Lynchburg Chair John Lawrence mastered the ceremonies and Lonnie Paris the manager of the Bert Dodson campaign spoke. Lonnie is a veteran campaign manager with 16 battles under his belt. Kody J Roza from the Dodson campaign was in the crowd and there was a general air of excitement that Bert is the only Democrat running and we can start getting the word out right away. Ada Smith and Lynchburg Vice Chair Gerald Cheatham and Charles Wood and new members and new faces and old friends made up the packed room crowd. Special Guest Dr. Andrew Bard Schmookler and his wife April topped off the lively crowd.
The Member of Note this month is Martha Wilder and yes her husband shares some connection with former Governor Douglas Wilder, a great ground breaking Virginia Democrat. Martha enjoys seeing her friends at the Lynchburg meetings and attends on a regular basis. Martha is interested in the Juneteenth Service Day Celebration coming up on June 18th and asked me some questions about that event. I couldn’t remember the details but knew who to go to for help. Ada Smith was the salvation. It turned out that Martha and Ada know each other and everything worked out well.
The crowd was loud as friends chatted away and connected with new friends. I caught Ada as she looked over the menu. We thank our friends at the Westside Deli, 7701 Timberlake Drive. If you dine there check out the exceptional offerings of beverages and let me recommend the Black Cherry Soda.
Reprinted below is the announcement for thr Juneteenth Celebration. A lot of fun for all and everyone is invited. Hope to see you there.
Everybody Loves an Eat and Chat Meeting
Saturday, June 18, Juneteenth Service Day Celebration, 10:00 AM until 2:00 PM at the Hunton Randolph Community Center, 1120 12th Street, Lynchburg VA. Everyone welcomed to attend and enjoy family oriented music, food and a variety of activities. Juneteenth is the oldest known event in America celebrating the ending of slavery. June 19, 1865, Union soldiers landed at Galveston, Texas with the news that the Civil War had ended and the slaves were free. The celebration of Juneteenth initially grew out of the freed slaves desire to remember and celebrate that memorable day. Juneteenth is a celebration of African American freedom that encourages self-development and respect for all cultures.
Lonnie Paris and Dr. Schmookler
The Lynchburg Democrats hold Social Meetings at restraunts in each of the Wards and this stragedy seems to draw members more than standard meetings.
Chair John Lawrence and Dr. Schmookler
Lynchburg Chair John Lawrence asked Dr. Andrew Bard Schmookler to say a few words and be the keynote speaker for the meeting.
Photo from Amherst Meeting 1 Day Earlier. Dr. Schmookler has a vision of how politics should work and how it should serve the people’s intrests. He has the energy and the ability to draw others to his cause and the determination to not just get things done but to get them done correctly. That’s a quality deserving the respect of voters and one they are lacking now.
The always dynamic and full of energy Dr. Schmookler took the stage and charmed the crowd. At one point in his presentation the Doctor was doing footwork like a boxer in training and snapping off point after point of how the Republican Party has sold out the working man. This was after 8pm and Dr. Schmookler and April had been working since 7am in the morning, over 13 hours and still bright and alert.
Dr. Schmookler detailed some of the ways Republicans fail to represent working people and seniors and pointed out ways the Democrats are not strong enough in standing up to Republicans.
A smart Representative Knows how to listen
The News asked Bob Goodlatte for a comment on Dr. Schmookler throwing his hat in the ring for the 6th District Congress seat and “Two Term Bob” said he couldn’t possibly comment on those challenging him for the seat.
When He Speaks He Lights a Fire in the Listeners Mind
Here’s what “Two Term Bob”did do. He has started holding monthly meetings all over the district with voters. Twice a year used to get him by but now that he has some competition he has upped his game to include communications with voters. Dr. Schmookler is changing this broken Republican system with just his presence. Imagine the changes when Dr. Schmookler is sworn in.
Dr. Schmookler and April
Dr. Schmookler’s schedule begins at 7 am and ends around 11pm each day. He is shaking hands, visiting and talking with voters all over the 6th District. Yesterday he and April covered Amherst County, today he is in Lynchburg and tommorow he goes to Roanoke.
John Lawrence and Dr. Schmookler
Dr. Schmookler is committed to returning good representation to the citizens of Virginia’s 6th District. Government should work for the interest’s of the people and create employeement opporunities and insure a good education for all. You are invited to become a part of this campaign.
The Message is Large and Important
To follow Dr. Schmookler and April become a regular reader of the Amherst County Virginia Democratic News. Our mission is to cover politics in the 6th Congressional District and the newly formed 22nd Virginia Senate District. Dr. Schmookler has a website www.nonesoblind.org Click and give him a visit.
WEIGHT LOSS NEWS
Bert Dodson Opens Campaign Office
Drop by Bert’s Campaign Office
1022 Commerce Street Suite Fon the second floor Lynchburg, Va
Kody J. Roza in his office. Visit Bert’s Lynchburg headquarters and you’re sure to meet Kody. His eye is firmly on Bert Dodson becoming the Senator from Virginia’s 22nd District. Kody has a map of the district on the wall in front of him and a double set of Dodson yardsigns in his view. Kody will be coordinating with the most energetic Democratic Leaders in Amherst County to get Bert the most support possible.
Today is opening day for the campaign headquarters and everyone was working diligently to get things set up. Gerald Cheatham, the First Vice Chair of the Lynchburg Democrats was there and working. You are likely to meet Gerald on your visit to bert’s Headquarters as well as Lonnie Paris, Bert’s campaign manager.
Bert Dodson and “Skipper” Fitts
There are two blue doors on the building. One is solid wood with no window. Thats the correct door. Take the elevator to second floor and go to Suite F. If you would like a yard sign or to volunteer or host an event or get some information on Bert or to hand walk a donation to Bert’s headquarters, this is the place.
Bert at Appomattox Get-Together
You are welcome to visit Bert Dodson Headquarters but if you would like to contribute by mail, here’s the address.
Friends of Bert Dodson P.O. Box 10249 Lynchburg, Va 24506-0249
Please make checks payable to: Friends of Bert Dodson
To comply with Virginia law please include Your Name and Home Address, City and Zip Code Home Phone and E-Mail Address Your Occupation and Employer
Bert Thanks You in advance for your help.
Keep Your Eye On The Prize
Local Headlines from the 22nd District Amherst Virginia Headlines
655 N. Shadeland Ave.
Please plan to arrive by 12:00pm noon Eastern Standard Time to enjoy lunch with others from our state party (cost of lunch is at your expense). Pay for your meal and then check-in at the check-in table in the back room where we are meeting. Then you are free to get your lunch and fellowship with others from our party.
Official meeting to begin shortly after 1:00pm. Schedule includes election of officers, approval of by-laws, discussion of state party platform, candidacy/ballot access laws, publicity, fundraising and more.
Only members who have filled out their membership applications and have paid their membership dues will be eligible to vote. Must be present to vote. Membership applications will be posted on our website or e-mailed to those on our e-mail list two weeks before the meeting. Guests are allowed to attend and observe.
More details coming soon so stay tuned. Please put this important meeting on your calendar now! If you would like to carpool with others from your area, please e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org
If you have friends or relatives in Indiana please encourage them to support this event with their attendance. Our new Indiana contact, Audrey Queckboerner, has done a magnificent job in bringing the Constitution Party out of the doldrums and the shadows in Indiana and into the light of energetic political activity. She is greatly deserving of everyone’s support!
The survey — which was conducted Feb. 24-28 of 1,000 adults (200 reached by cell phone), and which has an overall margin of error of plus-minus 3.1 percentage points — asked 26 different questions about reducing the federal budget deficit.
Rachel Maddow talks about the NBC/WSJ Poll
We Are Wisconsin
The most popular: placing a surtax on federal income taxes for those who make more than million per year (81 percent said that was acceptable), eliminating spending on earmarks (78 percent), eliminating funding for weapons systems the Defense Department says aren’t necessary (76 percent) and eliminating tax credits for the oil and gas industries (74 percent).
The least popular: cutting funding for Medicaid, the federal government health-care program for the poor (32 percent said that was acceptable); cutting funding for Medicare, the federal government health-care program for seniors (23 percent); cutting funding for K-12 education (22 percent); and cutting funding for Social Security (22 percent). In addition, 77 percent believe public employees should have the same collective-bargaining rights (when it comes to health care, pensions and other benefits) as union employees who work for private companies.
Republican pollster Bill McInturff, who conducted the survey with Democratic pollster Peter D. Hart, says these results are a “cautionary sign” for a Republican Party pursuing deep budget cuts. He points out that the Americans who are most concerned about spending cuts are core Republicans and Tea Party supporters, not Democrats, Independents and swing voters. In the poll, eight in 10 respondents say they are concerned about the growing federal deficit and the national debt, but more than 60 percent — including key swing-voter groups — are concerned that major cuts from Congress could impact their lives and their families. What’s more, while Americans find some budget cuts acceptable, they are adamantly opposed to cuts in Medicaid, Medicare, Social Security and K-12 education.
This poll again exposes the big lie that this country is too conservative for progressive legislation to be supported by average Americans. Democrats just have to learn how to properly frame the way they talk to the voters. Candidate Obama used a very progressive frame when he talked to the voters in 2008 and he won the presidency in an electoral landslide.
Transcript from the Rachel Maddow video clip in this post. If you were king for the day, if you got to make the decisions in this country and you wanted to bring down the deficit, would you raise taxes on people making more than million a year? Would you let the Bush tax cuts expire for the richest people in the country? Would you get rid of the subsidies, the tax breaks for oil and gas companies?
Would you do all those things? Really? Are you that liberal? Are you that liberal that you would do all those things?
If you are that liberal that you would do all of those things, then you are an average American. The support for these policies—look at this—the support for these policies is the support you get for the contention that puppies are cute. Eighty-one percent of the country supports raising taxes on millionaires to close the deficit, 81 percent.
If you look at the policies that Americans say they support, then we are the “Soviet Republic of Americanistan.” We are a bunch of commies in this country.
If you don‘t, tell somebody whether a policy is a liberal idea or a conservative idea. If you don‘t say who is proposing or supporting the policy, if you don‘t say where the idea is coming from, big majorities of Americans support really, really liberal economic policies—more liberal policies that are being supported even with Democratic majorities in Washington.
These are from the new NBC News/”Wall Street Journal” Poll that just came out today. Same poll also asked nationwide whether or not people oppose or support what Governor Scott Walker is doing in Wisconsin. Seventy-seven percent of people — 77 percent of people in the country say that unions should be able to hold onto what the Republicans in Wisconsin are trying to take away from them. Seventy-seven percent of Americans are for public sector collective bargaining rights.
The American people turns out are a bunch of commie, pinko libs.
We‘re hippies. Dogs on streams. Soak the rich. Kumbayah.
Here‘s the most amazing thing, though. The same group of people who says that this is what they believe in, in terms of policy, the same group of people who believes this, mostly call themselves conservatives. Thirty-six percent of people in this NBC News poll, in this poll with these numbers, identify themselves as conservatives. Only 24 percent identify as liberals.
We like to use this word conservative. You keep using this word. I do not think it means what you think it means.
How can you simultaneously be a country that believes in all of this stuff to this degree and be a country that calls itself conservative? You really can‘t be—not if the word conservative has any meaning. But the word conservative, the whole concept of conservatism has been treated to a really expensive rebranding campaign over the last generation or so, and that‘s what it‘s thought of.
People who don‘t believe in conservative ideas at all think that they do, because they like the idea of calling themselves conservative. In reality, in terms of real ideas, though, it‘s economic populism that‘s popular. Policies that benefit people who have to work for a living are popular in this country. Policies that single out and demonize and attack people who have to work for a living, those are not popular.
What‘s happening in Wisconsin right now, what Republicans are trying to do in Wisconsin, is really, really, really unpopular. Republicans appear to be shocked by that. After all, they picked this fight in Wisconsin because they thought they were going to win it and they thought they were going to nationalize it. They thought it was going to be part of their new post-Bush, post-McCain branding.
But they are at the point now of not just losing, but losing really dramatically, publicly, in a way that nobody will ever be proud of. They‘re now at a point of scraping the barrel of the barrel for the most desperate tactics they can think of to win.
Today, Scott Walker and the Republicans came up with some new ideas about how to ratchet up pressure on Wisconsin‘s Democrats who are preventing them from passing this union-stripping thing.
In addition to stuff like cutting Democrats‘ pay and cutting off Democrats staffers‘ access to the capitol building‘s machine, Republicans today move to zero out Democrats‘ office budget. They move to fine Democrats 0 every day. They moved to remove their parking privileges.
They‘re parking spaces? Seriously? Yes, their parking privileges.
That‘s the ground of which the Republicans are now trying to win this. That‘s the ground on which Republicans are left to fight this out in Wisconsin. That‘s what they have to stand on.
Republicans have gotten to the bottom of the barrel in terms of what they can do, and their support has just disintegrated.
As we talked about earlier this week, if the gubernatorial election were held in Wisconsin today, not only would Scott Walker lose according to one of the latest polls, but the state is evenly divided on whether or not they actually want to recall him out of office. Republican state senators who are supporting Scott Walker on this are now facing their own recall drives. The conservative-leaning “Milwaukee Journal Sentinel,” which endorsed Scott Walker for governor, today that paper came out against what Walker and the Republicans are doing with this union-stripping bill.
And listen to this—listen to this: this is a Republican state senator from Wisconsin on a Wisconsin radio station today. This—listen to what he had to say about what his own party is doing now. This is amazing.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
STATE SEN. DALE SCHULTZ ®, WISCONSIN: All I know is we‘re not talking, we‘re wasting valuable time about collective bargaining, which I don‘t ever remember being a part of last election‘s discussion whatsoever. But, most of all, you know, to me this looks like the classic overreach.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
MADDOW: The classic overreach—this Republican state senator calls what his own party is doing.
Nationally, the American people are against what Governor Walker and the Republicans are doing. Statewide in Wisconsin, the people also appear to be against it. Among even some elected Republicans in conservative-leaning media that previously supported this Walker guy in Wisconsin, they are against it now, too.
They are down to their most desperate measures. They‘re down to parking spaces. They say they won‘t negotiate. They are hemorrhaging support to the point they may get recalled from office.
But you know who does support Scott Walker and the Republicans trying to strip union rights and isn‘t afraid to say so? One of the Koch brothers a real one, not a fake one on a prank call.
The billionaire Koch brothers are not from Wisconsin, of course. They do own a large oil and chemical company, however. And Charles Koch wrote in “The Wall Street Journal” that he is on Scott Walker‘s side—both a bit of an anti-climax and a rally instructive thing for why this is a national story.
There are two sides in this fight. There is the side that believes in this, right? There‘s a side that believes in all these populist economic policies. That‘s one side. And then there‘s a few guys like David and Charles Koch and the multibillion dollar oil and chemical conglomerate they inherited from their dad.
It‘s kind of a numerical mismatch between these two sides. But it always is. It‘s the upper crust versus the middle class. It‘s the few people who own the company versus the number of people who work for the company. It‘s the people who write the paychecks versus those who cash the paychecks. It‘s the economic elite versus the average person.
And what the elite lack in terms of numbers of people, they makeup for in leverage in terms of the amount of money they can spend in order to advocate for their side. And that—that split between these two sides, aside from social issues and civil rights and issues of political style, that‘s split is the reason that there are two different political parties in the United States of America.
The Chamber of Commerce spent more money in last year‘s election than any other outside spending group. They put 93 percent of their Chamber of Commerce donations towards Republican candidates. There are two sides.
And because the Democratic side is inherently the one that has more people in it, and this is a democracy, and it‘s one person, one vote, the Republican side, in order to compete with that, has to use money to leverage as many votes as they can, because their side represents the interest of fewer people. That‘s where they found social issues and abortion and gay rights and religion and all of these other things to come in handy.
There‘s an economic split between the two parties, between Democrats and Republicans, but more people are on the Democratic side of that economic split, almost by definition. So, Republicans, by and large, have had to use non-economic issues to get people to vote with the economic elite and against their own economic interest.
The other way this works, though, is this—to the extent that Democrats embrace their role as standing for the average American, standing for the rights of people who work for a living, to the extent Democrats embrace that, people who work for a living and the institutions that represent them, that represent working people, and even poor people, they have over the years pushed the Democratic Party to endorse populist policies—to endorse stuff that helps regular working people. Stuff like minimum wage laws, stuff like expanded health coverage, stuff like workplace regulation, stuff like responsible tax laws that don‘t soak poor people to subsidize rich people. That‘s economic populism.
Endorsing those policies and pushing for those policies has the happy progressive side-effect of paying real political dividends for the Republican Party. Fighting for issues like that just happens to work for Democrats at the polls. There‘s nothing I have ever seen that gooses Democratic turnout, that helps Democratic chances all the way down the ticket than putting something like a minimum wage law on the ballot.
Economic populism is really popular. People really like these policies. Even people who call themselves conservatives like these policies.
We never talk about the differences between the parties like this anymore, but see, it seems so old school. It seems almost too big picture to acknowledge. But the reason there are two different major parties in America is because one of the parties, the Republican Party, represents the interest of a comparatively smaller number of people.
They decided to represent the interest of corporations. You can see it in how the elections are funded. They have decided to represent the interests of people like the Koch brothers that own the corporations. The Republican Party represents those economic elites.
And on the other side, the other party, the Democratic Party, represents a much greater number of people, the non-elites, everybody who has to work for a living. That‘s the reason there are two different parties. That‘s the reason the two different parties exist, even if it is unfashionable to say so and recognize that it is.
And to the extent that the Democratic Party embraces that split and supports policies that make it clear where they stand, that they stand for most working Americans, to the extent that Democrats do that, it helps the Democratic Party. And to the extent that the Democratic Party forgets that and gets away from it, and starts chasing corporate money as well at the expense of its base constituency, not only is there less reason for two different parties to exist in this country, but the Democratic Party is sowing the seeds of its own demise.
As the poli-sic 101 fortune cookie says, given the choice between a real Republican and a watered-down Republican, people generally take the real one. The reason Democrats are even tempted to try to be more like Republicans, to chase corporate interest, to give up on what makes them different from Republicans is because they tend to forget that economic populism is so popular. They forget numbers like this. They forget that this is what this country believes in.
And now, Scott Walker and the great Republican overreach of 2011 has served to remind them. It has reconnected the Democratic Party with its reason for existing.
Scott Walker is looking at being recalled as governor in Wisconsin. What‘s happening on the other side? Well, the progressive group Act Blue put out a call for people to support the Wisconsin Democratic senators who fled the state in order to stop Walker and Republicans from what they‘re doing. So far, with that call, which I bet you didn‘t even hear about, they‘ve raised more than 0,000 for state senators.
The AFL-CIO, the biggest federation of unions in the country, they are now reveling in their newfound support. The AFL-CIO president saying, quote, “We‘ve never seen the incredible solidarity that we are seeing now.”
The head of the United Mine Workers quoted by “The Associated Press,” saying, “People are looking at this and saying, this is a struggle I want to be part of, this is our moment.”
A group called the Progressive Change Campaign C put out the most pointed “stand with the people who work for a living” ad that we have seen in a very long time. They asked for support online to keep it running. Within eight hours, they tell us they raised 5,000.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
EMILY PEASE-CLEM, TEACHER, MADISON, WI: Governor Walker and the Republicans just gave over 0 million in tax cuts to corporations, and now, they‘re asking teachers and nurses to pay for it, and attacking workers‘ rights to negotiate for benefits.
KRISTINE FANTETTI, SECRETARY, WHITEWATE, WI: I‘m just a secretary, and this bill that Walker‘s proposing is going to cost me over ,000 a year.
KATHLEEN SLAMKA, ELECTRICIAN, OAK CREEK, WI: This is Republican class warfare, an attack on the middle class. This is a battle and we need to win.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MADDOW: In Washington, Democrats like Ohio Congressman Tim Ryan find themselves looking into CSPAN cameras and making this kind of case for what the Democratic Party stands for.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. TIM RYAN (D), OHIO: The issue that we are talking about in Ohio, in Wisconsin is an issue of respect for the average worker in the United States of America. The issue is: are we going to respect work in the United States of America? Are we going to respect the workers in the United States of America while all these fat cats have gotten off scot-free? And we turn around and tell the workers in Ohio and Wisconsin and Indiana and the Big Ten Conference, you got to take the hit. It‘s unfair and it‘s disrespectful and it is not an American value.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MADDOW: When is the last time you heard Democrats talking like that in Congress?
Democrats are placing themselves on the side of Americans who have to work for a living and against the corporate interest and the political party those corporate interests pay for who are trying to strip them of their rights. This is happening among Democrats at the state level, right? The Wisconsin 14, those Wisconsin state senators have been out of the state 14 days now. They show no signs of wavering.
In Indiana—Indiana—Indiana, land of Democrats like Evan Bayh—in Indiana, state Democrats there did what the Wisconsin Democrats did. In Indiana, they fled the state. Once they fled the state, Republicans caved, and then the Democrats decided to stay out of the state in opposition to privatizing the state school system, too.
Indiana that happened? The fighting progressive Democrats of Indiana?
Indiana and Wisconsin Democrats have galvanized to take the kind of
stand and to show the kind of spine that the Democratic base has frankly
been weeping for my entire adult life. In the state, Democrats are remembering now that there‘s a reason there are two parties in this country
remembering why the Democratic Party is not the Republican Party, remembering that the Democratic Party stands for people who work for a living, stands for the kinds of economic populism that are wildly popular in the United States of America, even when people call themselves conservatives.
In the states, in the Midwest, in places like Wisconsin and Indiana and Ohio, the Democratic Party is rediscovering its soul, remembering why it exists. No national Democrats remember that, too.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Understand this: if American workers are being denied their right to organize and collectively barring on when I‘m in the White House, I‘ll put on a comfortable pair of shoes myself. I‘ll walk on that picket line with you as president of the United States of America because workers deserve to know that somebody‘s standing in their corner.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MADDOW: That was candidate Barack Obama in 2007. There‘s no picket line in Wisconsin, but those rights are certainly being stripped.
What‘s happening in Wisconsin is galvanizing the Democratic Party in the States and reconnecting Democrats to what great majorities of Americans believe—economic populism, the interest of people who work for a living.
Republicans picked the wrong fight here. They are isolated and defensive and desperate on this. And even if they win—which I don‘t think they will—they will never be proud of how they won it. They will only be able to hope people forget how they won it.
This has become the Democrats‘ moment. When do we get to hear from our Democratic president on that?
Electoral losses come and go, but those eager to write an obituary for Democrats may want to put down their pens and look closer.
President Obama promised in 2008 to redefine Washington by working beyond politics as usual, and we saw evidence of that in the anything-but-lame “lame duck” session that just ended.
As days ticked away, Congress passed a tax cut compromise to protect the middle class and extend unemployment benefits, ratified the START nuclear treaty, approved aid for 9/11 first responders, passed food safety and child nutrition bills, and repealed the discriminatory military policy known as “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.”
These are victories for the American people. And with many of them having approval ratings above 70 percent, they’re also proof that Democratic values of responsible government, increased opportunity, and equality are alive and well, despite what Republicans would have you believe.
It’s no surprise then, that the President’s popularity has grown both nationally and among Democrats in recent days while that of Republicans, who tried to stall congressional action, has dropped. Approval for the lame-duck session itself reached 56 percent, as Americans were happy to see Congress working overtime to address serious issues.
This dramatic end to the year caps an impressive list of ways that Democrats have helped millions of Americans since the President took office two years ago.
On day one, the President signed the Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act to ensure equal pay for equal work. Then Wall Street reform ended the pattern of taxpayer bailouts for banks whose reckless practices put Main Street in peril. New protections from abusive credit card companies and aid for college students were also passed.
In Tennessee, the Recovery Act created or saved 63,000 jobs by June 2010 and gave 2.3 million middle-class families a tax cut. Other tax incentives created more than 197,000 new hires, and 70,000 loans spurred small business growth in our state.
One of the best recovery stories is that of Tennessee’s auto industry, which is back on track – and putting Tennesseans back to work – thanks to government investments that gave automakers on a new footing to compete globally in the years ahead.
General Motors’ recent public offering was the largest in history for a U.S. company, and it has put taxpayers on a faster pace for getting back their investment.
While the debate around health care reform was muddied by misinformation, the positive impact it will have on Tennessee families is clear. Roughly 417,000 residents will now have access to quality and affordable health care, including 104,400 with pre-existing conditions who will no longer be denied coverage.
Closing the Medicare “donut hole” is helps 85,000 seniors afford life-saving care, and 475,000 young Tennesseans can stay on their parents’ coverage until the age of 26, freeing them up to concentrate on education and new careers. Also, more than 113,000 small businesses and 1.6 million families will receive tax relief to help afford health care.
While other governors openly criticized federal aid, Gov. Bredesen’s leadership in using Recovery Act funding helped to stabilize our state’s economy and put us in a better position to create jobs in the future.
Attracting clean energy companies, repairing failing infrastructure, and keeping our fiscal house in order has made Tennessee the nation’s most competitive state for business, the second-best for business climate and the most improved state for development.
That comes on top of the billion in capital investment we’ve already seen in the last seven years with more than 50 corporate headquarters moving to Tennessee.
And while much of Tennessee suffered from a terrible flood this year, Democratic officeholders from local, state and national levels responded in this time of crisis by bringing much-needed public assistance to those who lost their homes, were without food and needed to begin the arduous process of rebuilding.
Working with the state legislature, Gov. Bredesen secured federal “Race to the Top” funding to complete much-needed reform of K-12 education, and there is now 7 million being invested in higher education over the next 10 years.
Our economy is moving in the right direction again, and Tennessee will continue to lead the way in the years ahead as a great place to live, start a business, and raise a family. Democrats can hold their heads high at getting us there and making the lives of millions of Tennessee families better.
“Politico was wrong, Huffington Post was wrong, hell, all the pundits were wrong. Harry Reid isn’t just Dracula, he isn’t just Lazarus, he’s our Leader and our whole caucus is thrilled that he’s unbreakable and unbeatable.”