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Tina's Weekly News Wrap

1 Nov 2021 3:09 PM | Douglass MacKenzie (Administrator)

With just a day left before election day, this is such an exciting time. Many folks get their ballots in during the last few critical days; if you haven’t made a plan to return your ballot yet, do so right away! A special plea to voters ages 18-35 - that demographic is lagging around the state and it’s time to stop procrastinating!

You can submit your ballot in a dropbox or via USPS as long as it is postmarked by Tuesday. You can check out the list of ballot dropboxes near you (and the other resources we have) at www.wa-democrats.org/iwillvote. Or call our voter protection hotline at 206-309-VOTE and our volunteers can provide assistance! 

If you have already voted, connect with a local candidate in your area and see if you can do some critical last-minute volunteer work with them. Some campaigns are doorbelling this weekend (weather looks great!) and others are running remote phone banks and text banks. Every candidate should have something for you to help get out the vote in your community! We anticipate that many races will be won or lost by just a handful of votes, so every voter we communicate with in the next few days will make the difference! 

Here are some graphics that I encourage folks to share on their personal social media and on their local party organization’s account to help spread the word!

Secretary of State - As you probably heard, Washington’s Republican Secretary of State Kim Wyman announced this week that she’s resigning her position in mid-November to take a job with the Biden-Harris administration, working on protecting elections from foreign interference. While she and I haven’t always seen eye to eye, I have a lot of hope for her future work to defend our democracy against malicious overseas actors and keep our elections free and fair. 

This means that Governor Inslee will appoint a replacement and we’ll have a hugely important special election in 2022. It’s critical that we win this race in 2022 and elect a responsible, effective Democrat who will work to make our elections more equitable, so all Washingtonians can participate in our political process with an accessible voter registration program.

We’ve seen how Republican politicians have spent the last year calling into question the integrity of our elections and alleging nonexistent fraud. They’ve filed completely ungrounded lawsuits, including the ones that the State Democratic Party is now intervening in to dismiss in federal court. They’ve spread conspiracies and nonsense to try to undermine confidence in our elections, our democracy, and, ultimately, our government as a whole.

I worry about how the Republican primary for this seat is going to go next year, and what horrible candidate the state GOP will support (will Loren Culp jump in?). I’m not holding out hope for them to advance another Wyman-esque administrative candidate; I expect we’ll see one of the types who still claims that the 2020 election was stolen from Trump and Culp and who will aggressively work to suppress the vote and disenfranchise Washingtonians. 

It almost feels like a cliche to always be talking about how high the stakes for 2022 are, but I can’t emphasize enough how much trouble our state will be in if someone like Doug Ericksen or Robert Sutherland manages to hold statewide office, including Secretary of State. You can be sure that the Washington State Democratic Party is committed to fighting hard to elect someone who will defend our democracy against the nonsense attacks of the Republican Party.

New Build Back Better Framework - It’s been so difficult to keep up with the news coming out of Washington D.C. about the busy negotiations around President Biden’s Build Back Better reconciliation bill. Washington’s representation has been a major part of this work, and I want to especially thank Senator Patty Murray for her critical leadership in the Senate working to persuade Senators Manchin and Sinema. I am also grateful for Representative Pramila Jayapal’s organizing in the House to ensure that we get a strong, progressive package that meets the needs of the moment and of the future. 

Yesterday, the Biden-Harris Administration announced a package that they believe should pass both chambers of Congress. This Build Back Better framework will level the playing field and make corporations and the wealthiest pay their fair share, so that middle-class families can finally get a shot at getting ahead. It is a transformative investment in climate, care, and kids that will lower the costs of expenses families depend on, help people get back to work, and strengthen the economy.

This framework will be the most transformative investment in children and caregiving in generations – transforming the lives of millions of children, saving parents thousands of dollars, and adding two years of free, universal schooling to our public education system for the first time in over a century. It will be the largest effort to combat climate change in history. It will cut taxes for tens of millions of middle-class families. It is the biggest expansion of affordable health care in a decade. As the President said, it’s a big darn deal.

Children & Caregiving: Preschool, child care and care for older loved ones is prohibitively expensive for middle-class families. Build Back Better will deliver two years of free preschool for more than 6 million children – which costs an average of $8,600 per year – and increase the quality of preschool for many more children already enrolled. Research shows that every $1 invested in high-quality early childhood care and education can yield $3 to $7 over the long-run, in the form of improved health and education outcomes, increased likelihood of being employed, and higher earnings in adulthood. 

The last time America added years of free schooling was more than 100 years ago. This is an investment in our kids and in our global competitiveness. Build Back Better will ensure that no middle-income family pays more than 7% of their income on child care and will help states expand access to high-quality, affordable child care to about 20 million children per year. The framework also delivers affordable, high-quality care for older Americans and people with disabilities in their homes, while supporting the workers who provide this care. And Build Back Better will give 35 million families a major tax cut by extending the expanded Child Tax Credit. This is a historic proposal that will save middle-class families and enable families to work and succeed in the economy.

Climate: Scientists have been warning us for years that extreme weather is going to get more extreme. We’re living it in real time now. Extreme weather cost America $99 billion in 2020, and this amount will only increase with inaction. Build Back Better will cut greenhouse gas emissions by well over one gigaton by 2030, reduce consumer energy costs, give our kids cleaner air and water, and create hundreds of thousands of high-quality jobs. BBB advances environmental justice by investing in a 21st century clean energy economy – from buildings, transportation, industry, electricity, and agriculture to climate smart practices in our lands and waters. 

The framework expands access to rooftop solar and home electrification, cutting the cost of installing solar for a home around 30% and shortening the payback period for a family by approximately five years. And BBB will create manufacturing credits for solar and onshore and offshore wind, creating millions of good-paying jobs building clean energy technology. These investments will ensure that we can meet our goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions between 50 and 52 percent below 2005 levels by the year 2030.

Health Care: Before the American Rescue Plan, even people with health insurance struggled to pay their premiums. About 30 million people were uninsured in 2019, before President Biden took office, and coverage under the ACA (even with the premium subsidies) was too expensive for many families. The President believes no one should lie in bed wondering, “what will I do if she gets cancer?” or “will I go bankrupt paying for this procedure?” Build Back Better will reduce premiums for more than 9 million Americans by extending the expanded Premium Tax Credit, deliver health care coverage to up to 4 million uninsured people in states that have locked them out of Medicaid, and help older Americans access affordable hearing care by expanding Medicare. 

Build Back Better will improve our immigration system, consistent with the Senate’s reconciliation rules. And the framework is paid for by rewarding work, not wealth – and ensuring that the super-wealthy and corporations pay their fair share and can’t cheat on their tax bills. No one making less than $400,000 will have their taxes raised

I’m looking forward to the next steps but between this package, the American Rescue Plan, and the bipartisan infrastructure bill, this Congress and the Biden Administration are in a position to pass some truly transformative legislation to help meet the needs of working families across America. We are finally making a transformative investment in climate, care, and kids that will lower the costs of things families depend on, help people get back to work, and grow the economy. 

You can read more about the details of the Build Back Better package here.

Emerge Candidate Training - Are you a Democratic female-identified individual who’s considering running for office in Washington? You should connect with the candidate training and recruitment organization Emerge Washington! Applications are open for Emerge WA's 2022 cohort. This is a great opportunity to learn more about being a candidate, participate in useful training, and get connected to a powerful network of other political women who are elected, past candidates, or running (and will win!) this year. 

Classes start in January and meet one weekend a month until May. Emerge provides you with the training you need to run for office and win, including access to the network of Emerge alumnae.  Read about the application process on Emerge's website and apply today. Applications close November 12th -- two weeks from today. To learn more about the Emerge WA signature training program, please visit their website and attend an upcoming information session via Zoom, some of which are regionally based. 

Upcoming virtual info sessions: RSVP to Emily@EmergeWA.org

November 4th at 7 PM: Northwest WA

November 7th at 7 PM: General statewide session

Blue Washington Baseball Hats - We know that party building and grassroots organizing has to be sustainable, year-round work. To support that, we need sustainable, year-round funding. Recurring donors are some of the most important donors we have - their long-term and ongoing investment makes our long-term organizing possible. 

Our Blue Washington program was specifically designed to recognize and reward our recurring donors! Blue Washington members get special news, access to member-only programming, and receive cool merchandise. To learn more about the perks and how to sign up, click here!

For a limited time, those who join with a minimum monthly donation of $10, through Election Day, will receive this limited edition baseball cap with a message that all Democrats know to be true: 

Sign up today (has to be before the end of the day on Election Day!) to receive your hat AND additional perks, all while supporting a truly grassroots movement! 

Please invest today so we can continue to pass policy that leads Washington to a more progressive future! Help us earn victories at every level of government by becoming a Blue Washington donor today.

With gratitude, 

Tina Podlodowski

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