200,000 marched for America this weekend. Now it's your turn...

From the Restore Fairness blog.

Do you know what it feels like to be a part of a 200,000 person-strong protest? In a word- amazing. But why scrimp on words when describing the largest demonstration for immigration reform since 2006!

On Sunday March 21st we joined tens of thousands of people from every corner of the country as they came together in Washington D.C. to demand humane immigration reform NOW. With thousands of workers, faith based groups, young people, LGBT folks and African-Americans demonstrating, the atmosphere on the National Mall was electric. Once we finished taking in the sheer magnitude of the sea of people that stretched across five blocks of the Mall, we held our signs up high and joined in the innovative and energetic rallying. It was difficult to not be distracted by the variety of colorful banners, signs, puppets and slogans that people creatively designed, and we were inspired by chants of “Sí Se Puede”, “No Human Being is Illegal,” and “Change Takes Courage.” The most prominent colors of the day were red, white and blue as demonstrators proudly waved American flags as they marched for justice.

Drawing on the history of the civil rights movement, Reverend Jesse Jackson was one of the enigmatic speakers who spoke of immigration as a civil rights issue that impacted all Americans. Other speakers included Rep. Luis Gutierrez, the leader of the movement for immigration reform, whose speech mirrored the spirit of urgency palpable in the crowd.

We’ve been patient long enough. We’ve listened quietly. We’ve asked politely. We’ve turned the other cheek so many times our heads are spinning…It’s time to let immigrants come out of the shadows into the light and for America to embrace them and protect them.

Cardinal Roger Mahony from L.A. made a touching and inspirational speech reminding us of the pain visited upon immigrant families impacted by the broken immigration system.

Consider what happened to little Gabby, a U.S. citizen whose father was taken from their home at 5 a.m. when she was nine. Now 14, instead of playing with her friends she takes care of her baby brothers while her mother tries to make ends meet. Gabby prays that Congress and the President enact immigration reform, so that she can once again feel the warmth of her father’s embrace and never again have nightmares that she will be left alone.

The surprise highlight of the “all star” line-up was President Obama’s video speech that was projected on giant screens to the vast crowd.

If we work together, across ethnic, state and party lines, we can build a future worthy of our history as a nation of immigrants and a nation of laws…I have always pledged to be your partner as we work to fix our broken immigration system, and that’s a commitment that I reaffirm today.

As health care reform passed by evening, the time for talk seemed likely over. Sunday showed us that the lack of forward movement on reform and the unending enforcement actions targeting innocent workers and families would be tolerated no further. The next day, we joined a national action organized by FIRM at the Republican National Committee offices to call for stronger support and leadership for immigration reform from Republican leaders. As we picketed outside, organizers marched into the RNC office and demanded a meeting with RNC Chair Michael Steele, who had rejected an earlier request. The strategic sit-in action met with success as a meeting was fixed for March 31st.

There will be a lot of hard work in the upcoming weeks. For now, we need you to send a free fax and tell your Members of Congress that if they “don’t choose courage over hate, we’ll elect people who will.” And keep tuned for our video of this momentous event.

Learn. Share. Act. Go to restorefairness.org




Our union is NUHW!

Today our hard work and unity paid off, and we are proud to announce that our union is the National Union of Healthcare Workers!

RNs at Kaiser Sunset LAMC voted 746 to 36 to join NUHW

Kaiser SoCal Psychsocial Professionals voted 717 to 192 to join NUHW

Kaiser SoCal Healthcare Professionals voted 189 to 29 to join NUHW

Our votes, joined with those of our brothers and sisters at Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital, Los Alamitos Medical Center, The Sequoias-Portola Valley and Doctors Medical Center San Pablo, send a message to every healthcare worker seeking a voice in their workplace and a union that they control: in election after election, workers are choosing NUHW.

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Going after Scott Brown

SEIU released this ad, with about a $700K ad buy, and there is also an online piece to go along with the television ad that seeks to educate the commonwealth's residents about Scott Brown's values.

This race is about the only thing being blogged about substantially on the conservative blogs-- with a ton of excitement. Not so much on the progressive side-- more like a combination of shock and I-told-you, with both wondering WTF-- that a year into Obama's presidency the political landscape could produce such a huge rebuke.

Rasmussen now has the race at 49-47.


[Update by Jonathan]: The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee also went up on air with today:

One has to wonder if Brown peaked too early -- that if he had snuck up on the Democrats he might have had a greater shot at actually winning than he does now, after his emergence caused Democrats and their allies to spend real dollars.

UNITE HERE Local 634 Members Beat Back SEIU Raid By 2:1 Vote

Last week the Pennsylvania Labor Relations Board (PLRB) announced the results of the election to represent the 2,300 cafeteria workers and noon time aides in the Philadelphia School District: members of UNITE HERE Local 634 voted by a 2:1 margin to stay with their union and rejected SEIU's anti-union tactics.

After months of attacks directed by New York-based SEIU 32BJ, the PLRB counted 1121 votes for UNITE HERE Local 634 and only 551 votes for SEIU Philadelphia Joint Board.  There were 10 votes for no union and 198 challenged ballots.

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Right to target SEIU as part of war against ACORN

The Congressional Democrats' stampede to join Republican efforts to defund ACORN was stupid on many levels, as Paul Rosenberg explained in this post. Among other things, Rosenberg argued, Democrats empowered and validated the GOP's strategy of demonization. They may have thought cutting off ACORN's funding would cause Republicans to stop exploiting the issue, but of course, the opposite is true.

Congressman Steve King (IA-05) has been one of the leading warriors against ACORN for at least a year, and lately I've been getting anti-ACORN links regularly from his Twitter feed. I saw on Iowa Independent today that David Weigel of the Washington Independent cornered King at the How to Take Back America Conference on Friday. Weigel asked King about the "next natural target" in the campaign to "defund the left." King mentioned "ACORN and all of their other affiliates--SEIU's another one. I mean, their connection there is so tight, they're part of the operational arm, and they're part of the funding."

So get ready for a major right-wing effort to demonize the Service Employees International Union. King explained that "keeping the media on" this story will be a challenge for conservatives: "While we have an opportunity to make a run at ACORN, we really need to make a run at ACORN and all of their other affiliates, and push this thing as long and as hard as we can, because once the media turns their attention away, I don't know that they come back again."

Watch it here:

Update [2009-9-29 14:51:15 by desmoinesdem]: Right on schedule, here's Republican Congressman Mark Kirk (IL-10), a Senate candidate, calling on the U.S. Census Bureau to stop working with SEIU because the SEIU is too close to ACORN. More on that story is here.

Update [2009-9-29 20:12:17 by desmoinesdem]: Thanks to RT for linking to Kathleen Parker's latest syndicated column, which highlights ties between ACORN, the SEIU and taxpayers.

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