The October meeting of the Hunter Mill Democrats will take place on Wednesday, November 14 at 7:30pm at the Reston Community Center at Hunters Woods Village Center, 2310 Colts Neck Rd., Reston, VA 20191 (map below). This will be the first Hunter Mill meeting since election day, so come and let’s congratulate one another on a job well done! It will also be time to start talking about the upcoming special and general elections for 2019. All are welcome to arrive at 7pm to meet one another and members of the executive board before the meeting begins at 7:30pm.
We look forward to seeing you on Wednesday, November 14!
Supporters of the Equal Rights Amendment are sponsoring a 10-day bus tour across Virginia to urge legislators to make Virginia the 38th and final state necessary to achieve ratification. The bus stopped in several locations in Fairfax County on Veterans’ Day, Nov. 11, after visiting Richmond, and continued on to Fredericksburg.
The bus tour is run by VAratifyERA, a non-partisan, single issue campaign focused on this issue. In Fairfax County, the third day of the tour, the bus stopped at George Mason University, Clifton, Falls Church and Fairfax.
At the Clifton stop, state Sen. George Barker (D-39) and his wife Jane were on the bus. Sen. Barker first introduced the ERA in the state legislature in 2012 and has been a strong supporter ever since. Mrs. Barker is co-chair of the Democratic Women of Clifton and Northern Virginia, and a leader in the bi-partisan effort to build a memorial to suffragists near the former Lorton Reformatory location where many suffragists were imprisoned.
Also on the bus were state Delegates Jennifer Carroll Foy (D-2), Hala Ayala (D-51) and Kaye Kory (D-38).
One of our best opportunities to take back Congress is in Virginia’s 10th District where we are working to elect Jennifer Wexton as our next U.S. Representative and to defeat the Republican incumbent. With less than 2 weeks to go, you can sign up today to help take back the 10th District. There’s so much excitement around this campaign that many of our volunteer shifts are full in the eastern parts of the district. However, if you are able to go west, there are five locations that still need volunteers for both this weekend and in the final days before Election Day. These are important areas of the district that may hold the key to victory!
What: Volunteer for Jennifer Wexton for Congress
When: Weekend of October 28-29 and November 3 thru 6
Where: Choose a location below:
The campaign has asked Hunter Mill volunteers to assist at the Ashburn location, first on the list below. Help is welcome anywhere, but please make your best effort to help in Ashburn if you can.
(Hunter Mill Volunteers are asked to assist here, if possible)
20937 Ashburn Road, Ashburn, VA 20147 (map) Click here to sign up
The project began last May with printing and distributing 5,000 voter information cards in Spanish, “Todo Sobre el Voto” (click here to view).
The cards, and other information in Spanish on voting, were also posted on the FCDC website. Also available in Spanish, for the first time, is the free Election Alerts service, which sends emails to subscribers before every election with key information including a sample ballot.
Committee Chair Janice Yohai also created and launched a special Latino outreach pilot program for Back-to-School-Nights in September. The committee targeted 16 Fairfax schools with over 50% Latino populations, mostly elementary schools, and recruited 13 Spanish speaking volunteers, who engaged close to 1,000 Latino parents of schoolchildren.
Reported by Janelle Hartman and Stephanie Witt Sedgwick:
Postcards may be old technology, but they are being revived as an effective tool in the arsenal of Fairfax County Democrats to get a robust turnout at elections on November 6th.
Numerous postcard parties have been held in Fairfax County throughout the campaign season to target registered voters with personal appeals from writers urging recipients to come to the polls and vote for Democrats. The total number of postcards from area volunteers flooding the US Postal Service is unknown, but estimated at tens of thousands.
The cards are all hand written and addressed. There’s no set script, but each reminds voters of the date of election and the Democratic candidates in their district and urges the voter to have their voice heard on election day.
As volunteer Eileen Shropshire wrote, “It took me longer to write this card than it will take you to vote. Your vote matters!”
Two recent postcard parties with big turnouts:
On Sunday, Oct. 21, more than 30 volunteers from Lee District Democratic Committee turned the back room of Fiona’s Irish Pub in Alexandria into a postcard writing factory — filling more than 1,000 postcards with personal appeals to voters who cast ballots in 2016 but skipped last year’s state election. Even Fairfax County Supervisor Jeff McKay and School Board Member Ilryong Moon squeezed into crowded tables to help.
A few days later, on Thursday morning, Oct. 25, more than two dozen volunteers filled the Whole Food Vienna café area (see image at top) to complete a three-month program organized by Vienna Neighbors United that has resulted in almost 10,000 postcards urging Virginia voters to go to the polls on November 6 and vote for the Democratic candidates in their districts.
George Mason University (GMU) students delivered a 2,000-signature petition to the office of university President Angel Cabrera on Thursday demanding an end to influence by donors such as radical libertarian Charles Koch over academic appointments and course material.
The protest was part of a National Day of Action sponsored by UnKoch My Campus, an organization dedicated to exposing and repealing “pay to play” gift agreements from Koch and other radical right wing donors that give them power to pick professors and shape the content of their research.
Koch has given GMU an estimated $50 million, and a total of $150 million to universities nationwide. Many of the agreements are secret but some have been revealed to give the donors an unusual amount of discretion. In the case of GMU, Cabrera admitted in April that some GMU donor agreements with the Kochs “fall short of the standards of academic independence”.
So here we are, in the final days of the 2018 election year. This is where all the work we’ve done all year makes a difference. We’ve spent months getting out there, knocking doors, making calls, reaching out to friends and neighbors to identify the voters we need to get to the polls on November 6th. Now it’s time to make sure they vote.
Pundits and polls have been suggesting all summer that it’s going to be a big year for Democrats, but those words and numbers aren’t worth the paper they’re printed on if we don’t turn people out to vote. There is only one poll that matters, and it closes on November 6, 2018.
So now it’s time to Get Out the Vote, or “GOTV.” This is where we reach out to voters and our message focuses on voting (e.g. “Your polling place is Fox Mill Elementary School. Do you have a plan to go there and vote for Tim Kaine and Jennifer Wexton on November 6?”). We’ve spent the summer identifying the folks we need to mobilize, and now it’s time to mobilize them.
Like anything else, if you want to do GOTV well, you need to practice. So the final two weekends of October, we do “dry runs” to make sure everything is working perfectly for the final days before election day. The dry runs will be the weekends of October 20-21 and October 27-28. The final GOTV efforts will take place on November 3rd, 4th, 5th, and of course, the 6th (election day).
It all comes down to this, so we are asking you to sign up for two or more shifts doing dry runs or GOTV. You can sign up at this link.If you have questions, reach out to our field organizer Maddy White at email@example.com. It’s time to stand up for women, children, and ALL of our communities. It is time we take a stand. This is your opportunity to get out there and set Virginia and the entire nation on a better path.
Organized labor and allies rallied Saturday morning against Trump Administration plans to deport an estimated 20,000 protected status immigrants from northern Virginia.
“This is a cruel and vicious attack on families,” said Virginia Diamond, president of the Northern Virginia AFL-CIO. Many of these immigrants have been in the USA for a generation and have sunk deep roots into their communities, she pointed out.
Nationwide, the federal government plans to withdraw Temporary Protected Status (TPS) covering 400,000 immigrants from El Salvador, Haiti and Honduras in 2019 and 2020.
TPS was originally granted because of political turmoil and elevated violence levels in home countries but supporters say that after many years of living in America, TPS holders have become American in all but name – homeowners, job holders, valuable members of their communities. Moreover, 300,000 children, all US citizens, have been born to these families and raised in this country. Their fate if their parents are forced to leave is in question.
After hearing speeches outside the Northern Virginia Labor Federation office in Annandale on Saturday morning, rally participants dispersed to canvass for Jennifer Wexton, a Democratic state senator who is in a tight race against incumbent Barbara Comstock as representative for the 10th Congressional district – the second biggest region for protected status immigrants, after Long Island, New York.
“Comstock has been silent on the [TPS] program,” commented Jaime Contreras, vice-president of Service Employees International Union 32BJ. “Wexton has been a supporter of labor in Richmond.”
You cannot miss the current enthusiasm of young people for a new political direction. Fairfax Young Democrats (FYD) is one of the most active and committed youth organizations in this movement.
Whether it is hosting speakers, canvassing, protesting or other displays of civic participation, FYD is there, representing the future — and many of the present — leaders within the Democratic Party.
Here is a sample of FYD activity:
Recently canvassed for candidate Abigail Spanberger in the 7th Congressional district, which extends from Culpeper south to below Richmond
Hosted panel on Criminal Justice Reform Sept. 26, examining how young people can effect change through legislative and other means
Will host Sen. Tim Kaine on October 17 for a discussion on policies and issues directly impacting young professionals in our region
FYD membership consists of individuals between ages 13 to 35 years old residing in Fairfax County and the City of Fairfax. FYD has partnerships or affiliations with state and national Young Democrat organizations, local high schools, George Mason University, Northern Virginia Community College and Fairfax County Democratic Committee.
FYD organizes its activity around four pillars:
1) Elect Democratic candidates for public office, especially fellow Young Democrats
2) Widen and increase the interest and knowledge of young people in government and the political process
3) Train and develop young people for positions of leadership; and
Volunteers packed the Sterling campaign of office of State Senator Jennifer Wexton (Loudon-Fairfax), candidate for Virginia’s Congressional District 10, kicking off a day of canvassing Saturday for them and an even longer day of campaigning for Wexton and her staff.
A crowd of over 140 people filled the office to capacity early Saturday morning and more volunteers were expected later in the day. John Begala, Wexton’s political director, said the turnout was so large that he could only compare it to what is normally the largest canvassing effort, the Get Out The Vote weekend right before the election: “We would be very excited if this was the GOTV turnout, and to see this five weeks before the election is really something.”
Before the group fanned out across the local area and Wexton took off crisscrossing the district, the group, which included volunteers from local progressive groups including Virginia Democracy Forward, Network NoVA, NOPE! Neighbors, Herndon Reston Indivisible and the Georgetown University Democrats, was welcomed by local politicians.
Looking back on the events of the past week, Delegate Jennifer Boysko (Fairfax-Loudon), urged the crowd to take “our energy and our anger and move this campaign forward.”
Delegate Mark Sickles, (Fairfax) promised that Wexton was a tireless worker, who “would get under the hood and fix what’s wrong in a bi-partisan way.”
Wexton had some parting words of her own. While incumbent Barbara Comstock, her Republican opponent, may have the backing of big money, including the Koch brothers, Wexton said she had more, “I love you guys, you are something better than Koch money.”