The People Led on Democracy--Virtually
Thank you to everyone who participated in "The People Lead" Day of Action Jan. 13th. Almost 400 NYS Indivisibles showed up for our democracy agenda call with Sen. Schumer on Wednesday, including many from IMV. We also heard from Indivisible co-founder Ezra Levin, and our statewide organizer who put the event together, our own Sarah Reeske. In addition, many of you participated in the call relay throughout the day, leaving messages for both Sen. Schumer and Sen. Gillibrand to push them to prioritize the democracy reforms that make it possible for the rest of the work to get done including HR1, HR4, making DC and Puerto Rico states, and ending the filibuster.
Unfortunately, our in person outdoor rally and press conference in New Hartford, and our creative car parade were cancelled on short notice because of the recent violence of Trumpists. Not only did we hear warnings coming from the FBI and national progressive groups about safety for events in the week leading up to the inauguration, but the IMV Steering Committee detected some unusual activity in the sharing of our weekly email that indicated local Trump cultists could be planning a counter protest or worse. While we publicly standing up for our values, truth, and democracy, our top priority in these times must be our members and public safety.
Overall, The People Lead was one of the largest and most successful actions
Indivisible Training Jan. 31
We did it! We beat Trump and his cronies, kept The People’s House and took back the United States Senate! This is an important moment to come together as a movement, celebrate our accomplishments and look forward together to the future. The work must continue.
Join us for this half-day strategy session, where we will discuss our plans to reform the American democracy as we head into a Democratic trifecta! You’ll have a chance to connect with other Indivisible group leaders, groups members and activists form across the country. When Indivisibles in rural and urban areas can lean on others and work together, we are stronger than ever. Stay tuned for the full agenda!
We are so excited to see you on January 31st! Make sure you register here and we will keep you updated with information as we get closer.
Candidate & Campaign Training Jan. 30 & Feb. 6
We want to have more candidates challenging more Republicans for county seats, city seats, and town board seats this November. To do that we need candidates, and to get candidates, we need to offer them the assurance that they will have strong volunteer support for their campaigns.
Sign up now for our candidate training workshops. Two Saturdays, Jan 30 and Feb. 6, 12-4 pm. Please invite anyone you know who is even considering running for a local office, and sign up yourself if you want to be more effective as a volunteer supporting local candidates. As we discussed at our recent IMV meeting, we are asking everyone to join a local campaign team. This means that the work of electing local candidates will be broadly shared and we can truly make it local, bite-sized, and fun. This two part workshop is a good starting point for those who want to get involved from the very beginning of setting up a campaign.
Invest in Our New York Campaign
IMV is a partner in a statewide campaign called Invest in Our New York, focused on getting our state legislature to raise taxes on the income and wealth of the very richest New Yorkers to raise $50 billion in revenue to address our state budget challenges fairly. We will soon be asking for volunteers to write letters (like Vote Forward but to fellow New Yorkers). We'll be doing public education, talking to our state representatives, and building momentum and pressure for the coordinated campaign. You can start learning more by checking out the new IONY website and reading the basics of the campaign.
More Events for You
In addition to the trainings above, we encourage everyone to commemorate the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday on Monday. Locally one of the best ways to do that is participate in the annual Frontiers Luncheon, which is virtual this year. You can watch either on YouTube or on Facebook. The funds raised from this annual community event are used to support scholarships for Junior Frontiers students. You can help support the important work of the organization with a tax-free donation online at mvfrontiers.com and reference MLK, or mail a check to P.O. Box 712, Utica, NY 13503.
Utica College has responded quickly to the Jan. 6th insurrection, and established a series of talks from faculty that put the events in historical context. Those events are listed in the calendar below as well. Citizen Action is also offering their very powerful six hour workshop this month on Reversing Runaway Inequality. It's become a lot easier to attend statewide trainings like this when everything is virtual. Please review the calendar below for events of interest to progressive political activists.
Letters to the Editor This Week
We had a good round of progressive letters in local newspapers this past week. Dick Meili's letter in the Rome Sentinel called out the election lies behind Trump's incitement of the insurrection and lifted up the importance of a peaceful transitions of power. Branwen Drew and Ted Tottey also had Letters to the Editor in the Utica OD print version recently, although that paper is failing to provide online access to published letters. We encourage everyone to continue to lift up progressive issues and priorities in local newspapers, whether the issues are local, state, federal or all of the above.
Let's enjoy the celebration on Jan. 20th in all the unusual forms it takes. We finally won the White House after four long years. We will have a Black, Asian woman Vice President. Let's savor the moment. Democracy is not a spectator sport, but this is one of those rare moments, when it is a delight to sit back and watch. Take a deep, long, breath. Then, we'll start pushing again.