KCDP President in Mount Vernon News Feb 1

Mount Vernon News

MOUNT VERNON – The top priority of President Joe Biden’s administration should be controlling COVID-19, the chair of the Knox County Democratic Party told the Mount Vernon News.
“The sooner it’s under control, the sooner businesses can get back to normal, schools can function normally and homes can be stable,” Meg Galipault said.

Late last year during the transition period between presidents, there was a period when nothing was being done, she said.

“We’re suffering the consequences of that now,” Galipault said. “It’s going to take time for us to see improvement because of the lag.”

She believes the Biden administration will do a much better job managing the crisis than the previous administration.

The next priority should be legislation to address the climate crisis, Galipault said.

“That could have a significant benefit to Knox County and Ohio overall,” she said. “We are already seeing the effects of climate change. One of the reasons Siemens is no longer in Mount Vernon is because they could have invested in solar and wind energy and they didn’t. The technology they were creating was out of date.”

Siemens announced the closing of the Mount Vernon plant in 2018, a decision that resulted in the loss of approximately 400 jobs.

The trend — with or without government involvement — is renewable energy and related products, Galipault said.

“I’m hoping we’re not too late,” she said. “I think there is a lot of opportunity for us to build an economy around these renewables. You have to build things to do that. Why not build them here?”

Galipault noted that Knox County is centrally located and has a strong manufacturing base.

“This would be a good place for manufacturers and entrepreneurs to locate,” she said. “This is an opportunity for companies that are forward-looking and realize this is where we are headed.”

Losing big companies like Siemens puts an even greater burden on residents to pay for water and sewer improvements and other infrastructure projects, Galipault said. Cities like Mount Vernon have aging water systems and roadways and need federal help to rebuild them, which she hopes the new administration will provide.

“Not only does it make our communities better, it also creates jobs,” Galipault said.

She is also hopeful that former U.S. Rep. Marcia Fudge of Ohio, the new secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development, will improve the housing choice vouchers program.

“Low-income housing in Knox County is lacking,” Galipault said. “That’s a problem.”

Reconciliation: 4 Truths

Jan 21, 2021, Washington Post
Opinion by Danielle Allen

Danielle Allen is a professor and political theorist at Harvard University, and the author of “Our Declaration: A Reading of the Declaration of Independence in Defense of Equality.”

Given our descent into political violence on Jan. 6, what is the path of recuperation? I would suggest that we need a reinvigorated commitment to seeking truth. Easier said than done, because it requires four kinds of truth.

First, forensic truth. This permits us to hold people accountable for their actions. Second come the personal truths each of us brings to making sense of our country. We need a moment of hearing one another without judgment. Then we need to achieve a social truth, resting on shared moral horizons. For this, we must pass judgment, but we should seek to do that together. Finally, we come to the path of hope, restorative truth — identification of the policies, institutions and practices that can secure a shareable moral horizon.

Forensic truth is relatively easy. In every courtroom, the plaintiff or prosecution and the defense enter with different versions of what happened. Eyewitness accounts often diverge dramatically. Through the court’s adversarial process, we litigate facts and reach a judgment, laying down a historical record on the soundest possible foundation.

The 64 election lawsuits filed by the Trump campaign, of which 63 were dismissed or yielded rulings against the president, gave us forensic truth: there was no election-changing electoral fraud. Prosecutions against those who participated in the attack on the Capitol and the president’s impeachment trial should, if well conducted, further secure the historical record.

The next steps in healing are difficult. We all bring emotionally resonant personal truths to the table. When conceptions of what is good vary widely, so, too, will perceptions of events. The goal is to understand people as they understand themselves. This requires deep listening that, at the outset, holds moral evaluation off to the side.

The personal truths in play on Jan. 6 diverged wildly. Witnesses on the left primarily saw the many Confederate battle flags and a white-supremacist insurrection. Witnesses on the right may have seen white supremacists — after all, they were trying to be seen — but they also saw a significant number of participants who believed they were embodying the spirit of 1776 in a morally legitimate uprising.

In the New York Times, columnist Ross Douthat describes conservatives as having coalesced in a fight “against consolidated liberal power.” We heard that same point in the streets. As one participant told a reporter, “The left has everything: the media, organizations, the government. We have to organize if we’re going to fight back and be heard.” This testimony should stick; it isn’t just window-dressing.

Earnest invocations of 1776 go back to the emergence of the tea party in 2009, when tea partiers around the country wrote “Declarations of Independence” that railed against “power drunk” Democrats, biased media and “smug elites” who were “imposing a Socialist agenda” and “‘transformational change’” and “repeatedly slander[ed] American citizens with false accusations of racism … and hatred.”

For those previously convinced the Democratic Party exercises power abusively, the pandemic-related decisions in 2020 to allow or expand mail-in and early voting — changes instituted only a few months before the election — were perceived as a last-minute effort to skew the vote. This sparked a for-real revolutionary current.

How should we think about the emotional truth coming from the right? Stoked though it has been by conspiracy theories, it has a hook in recognizable reality. Elite organizations — universities, media, tech, corporations and civil-service federal appointees — are, in fact, generally left-leaning and have sufficient combined power to squelch socially conservative ways of life, particularly those linked to traditional family structures.

To slap the simple label of white supremacy on the Capitol rioters is to take the easy way out. Extremists led the charge, yes. But why were so many others with them? Why do so many who voted for Trump still think the election was stolen? Not only disinformation is at work; so is people’s real sense of loss of agency and control over the lives of their families and communities. Some of this loss is a result of the effects of globalization; some arises from our cultural fights over gender, sexuality and religion.

Understanding people as they understand themselves gives us a chance to pursue a shared social truth. We can begin the process of moral sorting — of trying to identify which views are out of bounds (white supremacy), and which have recognizable validity as one option among many on contested terrain (traditional family structures). Our renovated social truth should combine recognition of people’s hunger for personal empowerment with an embrace of deep pluralism.

If we could achieve that social truth, incredibly hard work would remain, indeed the hardest part: reconciliation. That tantalizing and still doubtful prospect would depend on concrete steps. What approach to economic policy will secure people’s dignity, restoring access to good jobs and control over one’s working life? What are the resolutions to the numerous fights we are having where securing the rights of sexual minorities appears to be in conflict with religious liberty?

Achieving a culture that both empowers people and embraces deep pluralism will require a degree of creativity we have not yet begun to exercise. But our times call for moral imagination.

Sign Our City Council Democratic Candidate Petitions.

January 16, Saturday, Noon-2pm
KCDP HQ, 9 E. Vine St., Mount Vernon

Sign Our City Council Democratic Candidate Petitions.  One of our most important objectives for the coming year is to recruit and elect Democrats in Knox County. We hope to have several candidates run for Mount Vernon City Council this year, but they need your help to get on the ballot. Every candidate must have 50+ signatures on their petitions in order to get their name on the ballot for the spring primary.

You can help us with a one-stop petition-signing event THIS SATURDAY, January 16, noon-2pm, at the KCDP HQ, 9 E. Vine St., Mount Vernon. (Candidates! Let us know you’ll be there!) We will have space available for candidates to collect signatures in a COVID-safe placement of tables in the office. We require all to wear masks. If you forget yours, we will have masks on hand.

Sign Our Petition Calling for Representative Bob Gibbs’ Resignation

Sign Our Petition Calling for Representative Bob Gibbs’ Resignation

Bob Gibbs has recently proven he is not qualified to represent Ohio’s 7th District in the U.S. House of Representatives. A group of the 7th District’s citizens are calling for his resignation. We believe unity is not possible without accountability, and Rep. Gibbs needs to own his part in last week’s insurrection. We hope you’ll join us. You can sign the petition here.

On January 4, 2021, Mr. Gibbs announced his intention to vote against the acceptance of Electoral College votes from certain other states during the congressional certification process. Mr. Gibbs said — with absolutely no evidence and despite more than 60 lost court cases — that “I believe state judiciaries and state executive offices overstepped their authority in a handful of states.”

In refusing to acknowledge the real winner of the election, Mr. Gibbs threw more fuel on the fire started by President Trump’s lies about a fraudulent election, riling up their base of QAnon and radical far right groups who attacked the Capitol on January 6. Not only that, Mr. Gibbs actually voted to object to the certification of votes from Pennsylvania and Arizona following that terrorist attack. He voted as such, even as he knew that President Trump had incited that insurrection through his continual lies about stolen and “rigged” elections.

As a member of the House of Representatives, Mr. Gibbs swore an oath to uphold the Constitution of the United States. Mr Gibbs has violated the 14th Amendment, the one that prohibits anyone who “shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion” against the United States, “or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof,” from serving in Congress.

 

Historic Second Impeachment of President Trump

NYT–BREAKING NEWS

President Trump was impeached in a 232-197 vote. Ten Republicans joined Democrats in rebuking the president. He faces a Senate trial next.

Wednesday, January 13, 2021 4:39 PM EST
The Republicans who supported the charge included Representative Liz Cheney of Wyoming, the party’s third-ranking leader in the House.The defections were a remarkable break from the head of the party by Republicans, who voted unanimously against impeaching Mr. Trump just a year ago.

Meg Galipault Letter: Losing Democracy

Jan 11, 2021
Meg Galipault, Chair of KCDP

“An elected institution that opposes elections is inviting its own overthrow.” These words by
Timothy Snyder in the New York Times have stuck with me for several days. They speak to truth
and consequences. The fatal lie told by political leaders and believed by millions—that our
election was “rigged” and that Donald Trump is the true winner—will have devastating
consequences for us all: the loss of democracy. This lie fed the discontent that led to last week’s
deadly insurrection.
The country indulged Trump’s lie for two months. He took it upon himself to challenge the votes
only in those swing states he lost, spending much of November and December engaged in more
than 60 lawsuits contesting the results. He lost every single suit. Not a single piece of evidence
convinced any judge, including judges appointed by Trump, to overturn the results. All the
while, Trump heralded the lie that he won the election in a “landslide.” He fed Americans with
provably false information about fraud.
Had our Republican leaders done what legislators have done in elections past for centuries—
accept and acknowledge the winner—perhaps no storm would have descended on the Capitol to
disrupt the Congressional certification of the election last Wednesday. Instead, legislators, like
our own Representative Bob Gibbs (OH-07), perpetuated the lie, riled up their base of QAnon
and radical far right groups, and encouraged them to “Stop the Steal.”
As of this morning (Jan. 11), Rep. Gibbs still has not issued a public statement denouncing the
violence. But I’m not surprised. Gibbs was, after all, one of the 100+ U.S. Representatives who
voted on January 6, AFTER the insurrection, to oppose certification of the Electoral College for
“certain states.”
In voting to reject the certification, Bob Gibbs willfully lied to his constituents. He knows how
elections work; he’s been running for various offices for two decades. He knows how votes are
counted and by whom and how rare it is to find fraud. He knows how vote totals are released
throughout the night and sometimes into the days following an election. He knows our system
allows for ballots from overseas U.S. service people. He knows what provisional ballots are. He
knows the role of the Secretary of State in certifying elections. He is not some rube.
Hence, he lied last week. He continues to lie by not acknowledging Joe Biden as president-elect.
And in letting this lie stand and fester, he is every bit as culpable for the Capitol insurrection as
Donald Trump. If he had half a conscience, if he mourned those five deaths, he would resign.
We, the voters of the 7th U.S. Congressional District, deserve better.

Senator Jon Tester on Democrats and Rural Voters

President Trump visited Montana four times in 2018 as part of the Republican Party’s attempt at unseating Senator Jon Tester. It didn’t work: Mr. Tester was re-elected that year to a third term.

But last month Mr. Tester’s Republican colleague from Montana, Senator Steve Daines, rolled to re-election against a formidable and well-funded Democratic rival, Gov. Steve Bullock.

Why did Mr. Tester prevail while Mr. Bullock lost? And more to the point, why do most Democrats keep faring so poorly in rural America?

Mr. Tester, a farmer from Big Sandy, Mont. — and the only full-time farmer in the Senate — has a few ideas. He lays them out at length in his new book, “Grounded: A Senator’s Lessons on Winning Back Rural America,” a memoir that doubles as a policy manifesto.

He also discussed his views in a recent interview with The New York Times. Here are edited excerpts from the conversation.
Beyond President-elect Joe Biden’s victory, which is no small thing, this was a difficult year for your party, and especially in rural areas. Why?

I think showing up is a fundamental rule of politics, and I don’t know that we showed up. Because of Covid, we didn’t show up on the campaign trail. And in a state like Montana, you have to give people a reason to vote for you or they’ll vote Republican — they’ll default to Republican. And I think that hurt us greatly in 2020. The Republicans, for the most part, didn’t see the pandemic as near as a threat to health as some of the Democrats did.

Do you think that the images of riots and arson in American cities may have motivated rural folks to vote for Republicans more than the people who actually lived in some of those cities?

Yes. And then what we didn’t do is we didn’t respond to them. We didn’t come out with strong advertisements saying: “Rioting, burglary, is not demonstration and it’s not acceptable. And you’d be punished by the full extent of the court if I’m in a position of leadership.” We didn’t come out with a very strong pushback on that, and certainly wasn’t timely when it was time.

You approach it from a standpoint that we’re going to do our level best to make sure we have the best-trained folks that we can on the beat, whether you’re in Big Sandy, or Great Falls, or wherever you’re at in the state of Montana.

And I think the whole idea about defunding police is not just bad messaging, but just insane. And I’ll tell you why. The area where we have the greatest poverty in the state of Montana is Indian Country. And where do we need more police officers than anywhere else? Indian Country. I mean, that’s a fact. Because of poverty, crime is more prevalent. We need more police officers, not less.

Can Democrats go on the offensive in rural America?

Democrats can really do some positive things in rural America just by talking about infrastructure and what they’re doing for infrastructure, particularly in the area of broadband. And then I would say one other policy issue is how some Republicans want to basically privatize public education. That is very dangerous, and I think it’s a point that people don’t want to see their public schools close down in Montana.

Is the issue for Democrats in rural areas the appeal of President Trump, or is this a longer-term structural problem for the party?

There’s no doubt about it, he has an appeal in rural America. I can’t figure it out, but there’s no denying it.

But I will also tell you I think there’s a long-term structural issue. And by the way, I’ve had this conversation with Chuck Schumer [the Senate Democratic leader] several times — that we have to do a better job developing a message so that rural Americans can say, “Yeah, those guys, they think like I do.” Because that’s what Trump has right now.

I can go into the list of things that might be insane about this president, but the truth is that rural people connect more with a millionaire from New York City than they do with the Democrats that are in national positions.

So that tells me our message is really, really flawed, because I certainly don’t see it that way.

We do not have a — what do I want to say — a well-designed way to get our message out utilizing our entire caucus. So we need to do more of that. You cannot have Chuck Schumer talking rural issues to rural people; it ain’t gonna sell. And quite frankly, I don’t know that you can have Jon Tester go talk to a bunch of rich people and tell them what they need to be doing.

Some Democrats believe they are never going to establish a durable Senate majority because of the nature of every state having two senators and the party’s difficulties with rural voters. When you hear that, does that tick you off?

Yeah, it does. Yeah, it does.

Why?

Because the problem isn’t that the country’s skewed against the Democrats; the problem is that the Democrats have not done a very good job talking about what we believe in.

If there’s one mistake that is made way, way, way too often by folks in public service, it’s that you walk into a room and who does most of the talking? The senator.

Now, some forums that’s what the people want. But for the most part if you’re in a town hall, and you let people tell you what they’re thinking, let them tell you what’s going on — and then search into your mental database to find out if there’s anything that we’ve done to help solve that problem — then maybe you can have a conversation. But to walk in and say, “You need to think this, and this is what I believe is the right thing to think,” that switch goes off.

In 2008 Barack Obama cracked 40 percent of the vote in a lot of rural America. Flash forward 12 years and Joe Biden is in the 20s in some of these counties. At this time 10 years ago, South Dakota had one Democratic senator, North Dakota had two, Montana had two. What has happened in about 10 years’ time?

You know where Barack Obama spent Fourth of July in 2008?

Butte.

Butte, Mont. He showed up. Now, he didn’t win much in it, but he did a hell of a lot better than people thought he was going to do because he showed up.

What has happened in Montana as far as losing Max Baucus’s seat, and in North Dakota and in South Dakota, I think speaks to the fact that we’re not speaking to rural America. And look, Steve Bullock lost [this year’s Senate race in Montana] for a number of reasons. One was they nationalized it. They totally nationalized his race. They tried to do it to me, too. What I had that Steve didn’t have was there wasn’t a damn pandemic, and I could go out. And we did, man. We showed people that I was not A.O.C., for Christ’s sake.

You said, “Our party should stand for three words: ‘opportunity for everyone.’” Democrats always complain that they can’t distill their message onto a bumper sticker. But that’s three words — could that fit on a sticker?

Yeah, it could — it could work, yeah. It means you take care of the folks who need help, you give them opportunity.

In your book, you challenge Donald Trump Jr. to a day of “pickin’ rock” on your farm. Does your offer still stand?

You’re goddamn right.

You lost your home county in 2018 even though you exceeded 50 percent statewide. Did that personally sting you, and does that speak to the larger structural problems facing the party?

Look, for sure. I mean, yeah, I would love to win my home county, but it is very red.

How much of that is just people living on Facebook?

It is a big part of it, right? I’ve got good friends of mine, I might add, really, really good friends of mine, lifelong friends, that quite frankly say stuff that I go: “Really? That’s what you think? That’s crazy.”

When you started in state politics in 1998, I’m guessing that you had many more weekly and daily papers in Montana. And now people are getting their news from Facebook every morning.

That’s exactly right. That’s exactly right. And all from people that have the same view.

Your seat was once held by Mike Mansfield, the former Senate Democratic leader, whose tombstone at Arlington National Cemetery simply reads, “Pvt., U.S. Marine Corps.” Do you think any of your Senate colleagues will have a tombstone that modest?

[Laughs] Hopefully my tombstone will say “Jon Tester …”

“Farmer?”

“Farmer.”

Why Democrats Keep Losing Rural Counties Like Mine

FROM POLITICO, 12/1/20

I’m the chair of the local Democratic Party in a Wisconsin county that Donald Trump won. It wasn’t for a lack of progressive organizing. It was because national Democrats have failed communities like mine.

I am a sixth-generation native of Dunn County in rural west-central Wisconsin, a rolling landscape of forested ridges and farmed valleys, tied together by twisting roads and meandering rivers. My ancestors came here 150 years ago and farmed 6 miles south of where my wife and I currently raise our family. With a population of 45,000, Dunn County is a swing county in a swing state: The county went for Barack Obama in 2008 and again in 2012, then for Donald Trump in 2016.

After Trump’s election, I was one of those people who stepped off the sidelines. On election night, I turned off the television as the race was being called, climbed into the bed of my sleeping 5-year-old son, Frankie, and lay there in the dark with him, wondering what this would mean for his future. As a longtime political independent, I decided to join a political party for the first time in my life, and by 2019, I became chair of the Dunn County Democratic Party. It turned out many others here felt the way I did about Trump.

—read more—

HELP with Senate Runoffs in GEORGIA now

How to Help—Even If You Don’t Live in GA

Both Ossoff and Warnock’s campaigns have volunteer opportunities outside of phone banking, including hosting a grassroots fundraiser and attending virtual events:

VOLUNTEER FOR OSSOFF CAMPAIGN

https://www.mobilize.us/electjon/

VOLUNTEER FOR WARNOCK CAMPAIGN

https://warnockforgeorgia.com/take-action/

DONATE – Where to Donate:

Rev. Raphael Warnock’s Campaign and Jon Ossoff’s Campaign link above.

These organizations are non-partisan and people-powered and can use all of the funds they can get. Any amount helps!

Fair Fight is a national voting rights organization in Georgia founded by Stacey Abrams that fights voter suppression, engages in voter education programs, and helps register voters across the state.

https://secure.actblue.com/donate/georgiasenate

The New Georgia Project is a nonpartisan organization that helps Georgians get registered to vote.

https://secure.actblue.com/donate/new-georgia-project-1

Black Voters Matter advocates for policies to expand voting rights/access, helps increase voter registration through its partnership with organizations across the country, and more.

https://blackvotersmatterfund.org/donate/

The Asian Americans Advancing Justice protects the civil and human rights of Asian Americans in Georgia and the Southeast.

https://actionnetwork.org/fundraising/make-a-gift

GALEO increases civic engagement and leadership of the Latinx community across Georgia.

https://glcdf.ejoinme.org/Donations

The ACLU of Georgia protects civil liberties in Georgia.

https://www.acluga.org/

Common Cause Georgia ensures free and fair elections by protecting voting rights in Georgia.

https://www.commoncause.org/…/election-protection-in…/

ProGeorgia State Table supports the nonprofit organizations that have been leading the work on the ground in the state.

https://secure.actblue.com/donate/progeorgia-state-table-1

 

MOBILIZE.US

Jon Ossoff for Senate Events · Mobilize