Thursday, January 6, 2011

A really scary phone call

Republicans scored huge wins at the state and local levels last November, and now these new governors and state legislators are pushing a frightening far-right agenda to slash budgets, block health care reform, impose draconian immigration laws, and more. Can you chip in $15 a month to stop the Republican onslaught in states and communities around the country?

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Dear MoveOn member,

"Look, I know MoveOn usually works on national issues, but the Republicans have taken over, and we really need your help."

That was the message I got last week from a leading progressive in the state legislature in my home state of Maine. I could hear the urgency in her voice—and we're hearing the same thing from progressive legislators all across the country.

As you know, in New York, Republicans won control of the state Senate, and they now control the entire state government in a whopping 20 states—almost half the country.1

And their agenda, frankly, is frightening: passing draconian Arizona-style immigration laws, blocking President Obama's health care reform, and making deep cuts to Medicare and education. And following the 2010 census, they'll have the opportunity to lock in their gains for years to come through redistricting.2

So we're launching a major new initiative to defend against the Republican onslaught in states and cities around the country. This could be the biggest test ever of MoveOn's model of people-powered politics, and we'll need more organizers, more cutting-edge Internet organizing tools, and enough resources to pay for it all.

Can you help give us the ongoing resources we need for this project by making a monthly donation of $15 per month? It's easy, and you can cancel at any time. Click here to donate:

Yes, I can give $15 a month

Sorry, I can't

If you contribute, you'll be counted among the "founders" of this new initiative—and we'll share new tools and updates with you before we go public.

Some of the new crop of conservative state and local leaders are just beyond the pale. Florida Governor Rick Scott is the former CEO of a hospital chain that was hit with a $2 billion penalty for Medicare fraud.3 Maine's new governor, Paul LePage, is a tea party activist who infamously said that if elected, he would tell President Obama to "go to hell."4

And it's not just governors. Over 25 state legislatures—including many you wouldn't think of as "red"—are said to be considering Arizona-style immigration laws.5 Leading Iowa state Republicans want to abolish funding for preschool.6 And the list goes on. 

To fight back, we need to bring the techniques and tech tools we pioneered in national politics to help wage successful state and local campaigns. With your help, we'll identify the most important issues and campaign strategies in each state, and create new internet organizing tools to make sure our local leaders have what they need to win. The key is tapping into the leadership skills of our five million members.

Here's some of what we're planning:

  • New tool to enable local progressives to run MoveOn-style campaigns. We're putting the finishing touches on a tool that'll let you organize your own campaign on an issue you care about—and find other MoveOn members in New York and elsewhere who share your passion and can help you win.

  • National support for strong state and local campaigns. We'll bring national attention to state and local campaigns that might spark others to take action. Whether it's a state law cracking down on polluters or a breakthrough on gay marriage equality, we'll give extra support and national attention to the most exciting state and local campaigns.

  • Connecting local activists with skilled MoveOn members who can provide critical assistance. MoveOn's membership includes writers, graphic designers, teachers, experienced organizers, computer programmers, and so much more. That's a talent pool that's worth tapping! So we'll connect skilled and trained members to campaigns that need their expertise.

But it's only with the support of our members that we can take on such an ambitious project. Can you commit to kick in $15? Click here to donate:

Yes, I can give $15 a month

Sorry, I can't

Thanks for all you do.

–Steven, Amy, Anna, Michael, and the rest of the team


1. "2010 Post-Election Control of State Government: Legislature and Governor," National Conference of State Legislatures, accessed January 5, 2011

2. "Republicans gain edge in redistricting," USA Today, November 8, 2010

3. "Florida Welcomes Rick Scott As Their New Fraudster King," The Huffington Post, January 4, 2011

4. "LePage: I'd tell Obama to 'go to hell,'" Politico, September 29, 2010

5. "Many states look to Arizona's SB 1070 as a model for new immigration legislation," The American Independent, December 28, 2010

6. "Iowa GOP bill: Eliminate preschool, cancel sabbaticals and chop AEA budgets," Des Moines Register, January 3, 2011

Want to support our work? We're entirely funded by our 5 million members—no corporate contributions, no big checks from CEOs. And our tiny staff ensures that small contributions go a long way. Chip in here.

PAID FOR BY MOVEON.ORG POLITICAL ACTION, Not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee. This email was sent to eddie alfaro on January 6, 2011. To change your email address or update your contact info, click here. To remove yourself from this list, click here.

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