Upper Manatee, Bradenton, Florida
Panoramic photos courtesy of Joe Patterson

Democratic Voter Guide
































 



Welcome


Welcome! The Democratic Executive Committee of Manatee County is proud to welcome you to the party of inclusion. We are the party that is dedicated to creating jobs, protecting the health of all Americans, preserving our environment and standing behind soldiers, seniors, businesses and students in their pursuit of quality of life and happiness.

Since 2008 President Obama and the Democratic Party have stabilized a devastated economy, saved tens of thousands of jobs in the automotive industry and throughout the nation, secured the college loan system, and steadied banking, mortgages and the stock market.

We have passed healthcare legislation that will mean it will soon be illegal for insurance companies to drop you when you are sick. Seniors who fell into the donut hole and could not afford their medications will now receive help instead of doing without. Countless millions will be insured who would otherwise be left vulnerable. Insurance companies will be required to spend 80% of their premiums on actual coverage, and children with pre-existing and/or terminal conditions nationwide will get the coverage they and their families deserve.

The party that brought Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, unemployment insurance, comprehensive anti-discrimination legislation, college loans, the G.I. Bill, small business loans, clean air and clean water to the nation is now working on job creation, an American health care safety net and a common sense immigration policy.

There are many ways to get involved locally such as joining our great clubs or the Democratic Executive Committee, or participating in events and volunteer activities. You can also receive our e-mailed newsletter or informational e-blasts. I encourage you to join us. You are part of a larger American family and we, the 67,368 Manatee Democrats, welcome you.

Patty Benson, Chair
Manatee County Democratic Party
(941) 761-8385
Send an email.

 



About Us


The Manatee County Democratic Executive Committee is the official governing body of the Manatee County Democratic Party and works in cooperation with the Florida Democratic Party and the National Democratic Committee.


The Manatee County DEC conducts Democratic Party campaigns in Manatee County under the general direction of the Florida Democratic Party. It is responsible to build the party, to register Democratic voters and to encourage Election Day turnout among Democratic voters.


The essence of the Manatee County DEC mission is to encourage participation of all Democratic voters and to disseminate the Democratic message, platform and philosophy. The Manatee County DEC is the official charter of Democratic clubs and groups in the Manatee County area. There are five active clubs in the county.


Manatee County Democratic Executive Committee
P.O. Box 10605
Bradenton, FL 34282
(941) 761-8385

 



Get ready to vote!


Election Day is Tuesday, Nov. 4 and the deadline to register to vote is this coming Monday, Oct. 6. (Note: a previous version of this email incorrectly stated that the 6th is a Tuesday.)

The ACLU of Florida has put together information to help you prepare to make your voice heard in this year’s important election. Find out more about how to exercise your right to vote by checking out the ACLU of Florida’s "Let Me Vote" materials.

We’ve put together all sorts of important information, including:

• How to check your voter registration status
• How to register to vote
• When you can vote early (which may be different from county to county!)
• How to order and distribute “Let Me Vote” voter empowerment cards

With next week’s important deadline right around the corner, and early voting starting in some parts of the state shortly after that, we wanted to be sure you have all the information you need to exercise your right to vote.

Check out the materials today!

 



Truth Test: Does Amendment 2 protect marijuana dealers?


WESH 2 News is bringing you truth in advertising this election year.

Our exclusive Truth Test tackles one of the ads attacking Amendment 2: medical marijuana.

Watch this Truth Test

"Amendment 2 isn't what it seems," the ad begins.

The ad comes from the Drug Free Florida Committee and is part of a campaign largely funded, with $4 million so far, by billionaire casino owner Sheldon Adelson.

Its aim is to extinguish any support for Amendment 2, which would legalize medical marijuana in Florida.

"Its caregiver provision gives legal protection to marijuana dealers," the ad says.

Will it give legal projection to marijuana dealers? The Truth Meter rings false.

While by definition, a "dealer" is someone who buys and sells, the ballot language makes it clear that "non-medical use, possession, production or sale of marijuana" is illegal.

"Even felons and drug dealers could be caregivers," the ad says.

With this claim, the Truth Meter stays in the middle. We just don't know the Department of Health has yet to write any rules for licensing "personal caregivers."

"Amendment 2 caregivers don't need background checks or medical training. So what looks like a safeguard is really a loophole," the ad says.

The words on the screen lead you to believe this is all spelled out in the ballot language.

It's not. So the WESH 2 News Truth Meter rings false.

According to Patrick Manderfield with the Florida Department of Health, "Currently, there are no procedures in place for the issuance of caregiver identification cards."

Those rules, which may or may not involve requirements like medical training and background checks, will be created only if the amendment passes.

"Amendment 2 caregivers can't be arrested or sued if their pot hurts someone," the ad says.

On this claim, the Truth Meter stays right in the middle. That's up for legal debate.

Amendment 2 states that a marijuana treatment center and its employees and personal caregivers "shall not be subject to criminal and civil liability."

"They don't call it the drug dealer protection act, but they should," the ad says.

It's unclear exactly why Sheldon Adelson is behind a campaign to block the use of medical marijuana. His own medical research institute produced a study published last December that showed marijuana reduced inflammation in the brain and spinal cord.

Watch the video.

 



Tampa Bay Times says: Pick George for AG!


Excellent news out of Tampa Bay:

The Tampa Bay Times has endorsed George Sheldon's candidacy for Attorney General over Pam Bondi citing "accomplished history of public service" and "greater appreciation for the office's potential to be an advocate for Floridians facing everyday challenges."

Other key quotes:

"Unlike her predecessors, Bondi has been largely quiet as electric utilities win rate increases before the Public Service Commission. She has not been a particularly strong advocate for open government. Her penchant for fighting the federal government at every turn — such as intervening in a Chesapeake Bay lawsuit over the federal Clean Water Act — suggests she is too often more interested in ideological battles than in protecting the interests of Floridians.

Sheldon would be a more independent attorney general who would focus more closely on Florida's concerns."

Sheldon's entire campaign is based on putting people first — something Pam Bondi has failed to do.

She's bankrolled by huge, powerful conservative intererests — but we're bankrolled by an army of real people who want real change.

Please help the last weeks of the campaign by contributing here.

 



Awesome! Rolling Stone Outs the Kochs!


I retrieved the mail today - and got a huge surprise. It was the newest issue of 'Rolling Stone' magazine - a glossy format mag my former host daughter had subscribed to. I almost threw it away - but a blurb on the front cover caught my eye at the last minute...well, to be honest,the cover guy John Oliver's expression caught my eye and kind of directed it towards the article on the Kochs; excellent placement of the info on the cover. I am really shocked a MS publication has printed this article, much less featured it on the cover!

And here I thought that Rolling Stone had become just another glossy hipster mag. Shame on me. This brings back memories of when it was a cheaply printed rag that held the feet of the powerful to the fire.

Anyway, Tim Dickinson has written a great article in a mainstream publication. It really introduces the Kochs to a wider audience...any light that is shone on these parasites is welcome. I have been searching for a 'primer' on these modern day creepy oligarchs - this fits the bill perfectly. I will be buying copies for my in-laws, relatives, friends, and teabag associates.

Link and excerpts from the RS article below the orange whattizit.

(The comments after the RS article are fun to read too - get out the popcorn as the koch-klones try and spin this away.)

Read the article.

 



All About Amendment 2


We’re in the final weeks of the campaign to put a doctor’s right to recommend medical marijuana into the state constitution. The polls are mixed; some show Amendment 2 passing with 60+% and others show it gaining only 58% of the vote or less. On November 5, 2014, if Amendment 2 gets 58% of the vote, the headline around the country will read, “Southern voters reject Medical Marijuana Scheme.” A loss in Florida is bigger than just Florida. With Florida firmly in the medical marijuana column, the next president must face the conflict between state and federal laws governing cannabis.

If Amendment 2 isn’t your favorite piece of legislation, you can hold your nose if you have to, but vote yes on Election Day. If you believe the need for safe, legal access to cannabis should be for everyone, you need to be an active part of the campaign. Only 7% of people readily admit to using cannabis once a month. Cannabis consumers are not going to carry this election, but with our help, Amendment 2 can pass with over 60%...Read more.

 



Democratic Slate Card


Click to enlarge.



































 



Don't get left out


Are you tired of CEOs getting richer and corporations getting more powerful? Do you believe the economy should work for everyone, not just the wealthy? Are you mad that wealthy extremists like the Koch brothers can spend limitless millions of dollars to elect politicians who push the corporate agenda? Yeah. Me, too. That’s why this November I’m doing something about it, and I need you to join me.

Even if every union member had $1 million to pitch in, we could never match their big corporate money and the influence it buys. But there’s something we do have—our voices and our votes. Tuesday is National Voter Registration Day, when volunteers spread out across the country to help people register to vote. But you can get a jump-start because we’ve teamed up with the good folks at TurboVote to make registering to vote easy (no tech savvy needed).

Click here to get registered or to make sure your registration is up to date.

Even if you’re already registered, it never hurts to double check. Have you or your friends moved since last Election Day? Make sure you’re registered to vote at your new address. Voting laws in your state may have changed, or you may have a new polling place. Don’t take any chances!

There are candidates who really will fight for working people and for raising wages to improve working families’ lives. But they face corporate-backed politicians who are all too eager to make their CEO pals happy. Your vote can make the difference. But you need to be registered to vote.

Get registered now. We need all working folks to vote—including you—if we’re going to win on Election Day.

In Solidarity,
Carmen Berkley
AFL-CIO Director of Civil, Human and Women's Rights

 



7 Things Republicans Would Be Shocked To Learn About Ronald Reagan


BY ZACK BEAUCHAMP

“Happy birthday to Ronald Reagan!” Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) tweeted [this year on Reagan's birthday], swiftly followed by his Tea Party compatriot Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX). While praise from this sort of Republican on what would have been President Reagan’s 103rd birthday isn’t surprising, it is somewhat ironic. Though Reagan was extremely conservative (often terribly so), he bucked the sort of hardline conservative line the Tea Party has become synonymous with repeatedly throughout his career in politics. Here are 7 Reagan moves that may well have led to his excommunication from today’s Republican Party if he were alive today:

1. Paved the way for Obamacare

Reagan’s health policy previewed Obamacare in three major ways. First, Reagan signed Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act (EMTALA), the law barring hospitals from turning away patients on grounds of their insurance or citizenship — a preview of Obamacare’s ban on insurance discrimination against individuals with preexisting conditions. Second, Reagan doubled the size of Medicaid over the course of his presidency to pay for all of those new uninsured patients — a huge Obamacare-style Medicaid expansion. Third, Reagan pushed something called Diagnosis Related Groups (DRGs), which essentially had the government set the prices Medicare was willing to pay for each Medicare admission rather than pay for reimburse doctors per cost. DRGs cut Medicare costs by $49 billion by 1986, proving a promising trial for the sorts of Medicare payment reform policies you can find in Obamacare.

Read full article.

 



Slide to the Left


10 million -- that's the number of jobs American businesses have added over the last 54 months, marking the longest streak of private-sector job growth in American history.

While there's still a lot more work to do, the economy has improved significantly since President Obama took office in 2009. Back then, the economy was shedding jobs by the hundreds of thousands, the housing market had hit rock bottom, and the American auto industry was on the brink of collapse.

But the President took action, and now -- thanks to the resilience of American workers and business men and women -- you can see the progress we've made in four key economic sectors that have helped make 10 million jobs possible.

Want to see exactly how far we've come since the Great Recession? Just slide to the left:


















From breaking ground on new homes and building more cars, to selling more American products abroad and buying more at home, check out these interactive charts to see where we stood when President Obama took office and where we are now -- then share them with whoever needs to see it.

 



After dismantling land programs, Scott now wants funds for them


NOTE: Another desperate attempt to win re-election. After tossing out many environmental protections and dismantling the Department of Community Affairs, Scott has had an epiphany? We think NOT. Thanks to Barbara A. for passing this on.

By Craig Pittman, Tampa Bay Times

When Gov. Rick Scott unveiled a proposal this month to revive Florida's popular environmental land-buying program, to the tune of $150 million a year, the news caught Greg Brock off guard.

"I was kind of shocked," said Brock, who recently retired from the Division of State Lands.

That's because Scott's administration has spent the past three years dismantling the division of the Department of Environmental Protection that's in charge of assessing and acquiring environmental land, according to Brock and other former DEP employees.

Read full article.

 



FLORIDA WOMEN VETERAN CONFERENCE


Florida Veterans for Common Sense volunteers have been working hard to bring to fruition the first annual, statewide Florida Women's Veterans Conference with the goal of empowering women veterans. The conference is scheduled for November 7-9 in Sarasota. The Save the Date flyer is attached as a file. Please re-circulate it to your contact list.

Nadine Nokey, Julie Simonson, and Anthony Hardie are heading up the conference team and they've made terrific progress.

FLVCS Fund Inc. secured a seed money grant from United Rental through the Community Foundation of Sarasota County and the project is well underway. The team has secured a terrific venue, the Sarasota/Manatee campus of the University of South Florida and are arranging speakers and presenters now.

This a major project about which we can all be proud, but the team needs your help to make it successful. You can volunteer to help with planning and at the conference. Also, please suggest specific activities or information you'd like included in the conference. Contact Julie at jsimonson@icardmerrill.com.

We also need your financial support. Become a sponsor, or provide a woman veteran with a scholarship to attend. Contact Anthony at anthony.d.hardie@gmail.com for specific sponsorship opportunities for you, your business, civic organization, or scholarships for worthy female veterans.

Contributions can be made through Florida Veterans for Common Sense Fund Inc., (FLVCS Fund Inc.) which is a 501 (c) 3 non-profit/non/non-partisan corporation that works to help our fellow vets. Contributions to FLVCS Fund Inc, are tax deductible.

We are proud to say that we are an all volunteer outfit, so there is no high paid staff that drains resources away from helping our fellow vets. We are not only registered with the state to solicit funds, but we are also a non-profit giving partner with the Community Foundation of Sarasota County.

The Florida Department of Consumer Affairs Registration number is CH25552: A COPY OF THE OFFICIAL RESGISTRATION AND FINANCIAL INFORMATION MAY BE OBTAINED FROM THE DIVISION OF CONSUMER SERVICES BY CALLING TOLL-FREE (800-435-7352) WITHIN THE STATE. REGISTRATION DOES NOT IMPLY ENDORSEMENT, APPROVAL, OR RECOMMENDATION BY THE STATE.

Please call 941-349-5131 if you have questions.

 



WHO IS FLORIDA CAN?


The Florida Cannabis Action Network is a statewide group, headquartered in Melbourne, Florida. FL CAN has spent over a decade recognizing the value of the cannabis plant on our health, our economy and our environment. CAN members are concerned citizens using proven political tactics to implement sensible cannabis policies in their communities, around the state and at the federal level.

Click here for their most recent newsletter.

Click here for their archived newsletters.

 



Florida Democratic Party Voter Rights Resolution June 2014


Whereas, the right to participate in our democracy is rooted in the United States Constitution and Florida Constitution;

Whereas, voting is recognized as the foundation of our democracy;

Whereas, there is a movement in the State of Florida to restrict voter access to the electoral process;

Whereas, new voter restriction laws disproportionately affect citizens of color, women, the economically disadvantaged, and students;

Whereas, the Florida Legislature and the Florida Division of Elections has acted to restrict access to polling locations, early voting and vote by mail;

Now therefore we, the Florida Democratic Party, affirm the right of all Florida citizens to vote without barriers to their participation in the electoral process.

Therefore, the Florida Democratic Party urges our elected officials to ensure all precincts be accessible to every citizen regardless of any physical disability.

Therefore, the Florida Democratic Party condemns any restriction placed upon a citizen’s right to vote.

Therefore, the Florida Democratic Party advocates the restoration of voting rights when a citizen’s debt to society has been satisfied.

Therefore, the Florida Democratic Party and all citizen’s Florida solemnly requests the Florida Legislature and the Division of Elections to remove all barriers to voting for every citizen.

Therefore, the Florida Democratic Party calls upon our elected officials in the U.S. House and Senate to pass the Voting Rights Amendment Act.

Therefore, the Florida Democratic Party reaffirms the Democratic principle that every vote counts.

Download all of the Florida Democratic Party Resolutions.

 



Democratic voter expansion project for 2014 moves to Florida


The Democratic National Committee's nationwide voter expansion project is headed to Florida. The DNC says it plans to build a "new permanent infrastructure for the Democratic Party and its candidates" in key states, and hired Zach Learner, a Broward lawyer who until last month was chief of staff for County Commissioner Kristin Jacobs, a candidate for a Florida House seat.

Learner, 33, is a 2008 University of Miami law school graduate. He worked on voter protection efforts in both of President Barack Obama's campaigns in Florida and for three years (2009 to 2012) was a legislative aide to Sen. Eleanor Sobel, D-Hollywood...read full Tampa Bay Times article.

 



The Myth Behind Public School Failure

Feb. 24, 2014, http://truth-out.org/

Until about 1980, America’s public schoolteachers were iconic everyday heroes painted with a kind of Norman Rockwell patina—generally respected because they helped most kids learn to read, write and successfully join society. Such teachers made possible at least the idea of a vibrant democracy.

Since then, what a turnaround: We’re now told, relentlessly, that bad-apple schoolteachers have wrecked K-12 education; that their unions keep legions of incompetent educators in classrooms; that part of the solution is more private charter schools; and that teachers as well as entire schools lack accountability, which can best be remedied by more and more standardized “bubble” tests.

What led to such an ignoble fall for teachers and schools? Did public education really become so irreversibly terrible in three decades? Is there so little that’s redeemable in today’s schoolhouses?...read full article.

 



Have you seen this?!


Michael Bloomberg is spending $50 million this year to support Every Town for Gun Safety: http://everytown.org/who-we-are/.

And Mom's Demand Action for Gun Sense in America:
http://www.momsdemandaction.org/.

Downloads:
2014 Gun Sense Voter Federal Candidate Questionnaire

Washington Post article: Bloomberg's gun group to start 2014 midterms strategy by surveying candidates

 



The Big Picture: This Month's Jobs Numbers

July 6, 2014

You might be seeing a lot of news about the economy creating more jobs.

That's because at the beginning of every month, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics releases a report on our country's general employment situation for the previous month -- and this month's showed good news.

What's it all mean, and why should you care?

There's still much more to do to keep moving forward, but we've put together a few key points about how our economy is doing generally. Take a look -- and if you learn something new, pass it on.

Our country hasn't seen this kind of job creation since the 1990s -- and we've been adding more than 200,000 jobs a month for five months straight.

The 1.4 million jobs added in the first half of this year are the most in any half since 1999. What's more, this is the first time since September 1999-January 2000 that we've seen total job growth above 200,000 for five straight months.

Auto sales in June are also the highest they've been since mid-2006 -- before the financial crisis.

Let's not forget that the American auto industry is continuing to bounce back -- adding 18,000 jobs this past month for a total of 463,000 jobs added since Chrysler and GM came out of bankruptcy in June 2009.

Meanwhile, we're continuing to produce more oil at home than we're importing from overseas.

In addition to doubling renewable electricity generation from sources like wind and solar, last October something big happened: For the first time in nearly two decades, we started importing less foreign oil than we were producing at home.

It's progress -- but we've still got work to do.

Want a more in-depth look at what the jobs numbers mean, complete with more charts, numbers, and economist-speak?

Take a look at this post from Jason Furman, Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers.

And if you're looking for more great charts and infographics related to the economy, visit our Shareables hub.

 



I-75 Construction Update


The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) District One is designing improvements to Interstate 75 (I-75) from north of Fruitville Road to north of University Parkway in Sarasota and Manatee counties. The 3.5 mile design project also includes reconstructing the I-75/ University Parkway interchange from the existing diamond design to a diverging diamond interchange (DDI) design, the first DDI in Florida to advance to the final design phase...

Download and read the project newsletter (PDF).

 



Crist starts grassroots campaign to take Tallahassee back


Welcome to the People's Team -- you're now a key member of the grassroots force that's going to put the people back in charge in Tallahassee. There are three things you can do right now to get started.

(1) Ask three friends to join us - We need all hands on deck to fight back against the millions that Rick Scott's going to spend. Will you recruit three friends to join us? Send them this link:

http://action.charliecrist.com/Time-to-Join-Us

Or go here: http://action.charliecrist.com/Ask-Three-Friends

(2) Sign up to volunteer - If you want to knock on doors, make some calls, or just find out what's going on in your neighborhood, sign up here and an organizer will be in touch soon: http://action.charliecrist.com/Be-a-Volunteer

(3) Own a piece of the campaign - Charlie is committed to being the people's governor -- he will always be fighting for all Floridians, not just the ones with millions of dollars to donate. Own a piece of this grassroots campaign by chipping in what you can today: https://donate.charliecrist.com/Own-a-Piece

 



Florida Republicans Admit Voter Suppression Was the Goal of New Election Laws


By Aviva Shen, ThinkProgress

Floridians endured election chaos and marathon voting lines this year, largely thanks to reduced early voting hours, voter purges, and voter registration restrictions pushed by Republican legislators. In an exclusive report by the Palm Beach Post, several prominent Florida Republicans are now admitting that these election law changes were geared toward suppressing minority and Democratic votes.

Former governor Charlie Crist (R-FL) and former GOP chairman Jim Greer (R-FL), as well as several current GOP members, told the Post that Republican consultants pushed the new measures as a way to suppress Democratic voters. Crist expanded early voting hours in 2008 despite party pressure, but Gov. Rick Scott (R-FL) targeted early voting almost immediately when he took office in 2011. Scott’s administration claimed the new laws were meant to curb in-person voter fraud, despite the fact that an individual in Florida is more likely to be struck by lightning than commit voter fraud.

Current party members and consultants confirmed the motive was not to stop voter fraud but to make it harder for Democrats and minorities to vote:

• Wayne Bertsch, who handles local and legislative races for Republicans, said he knew targeting Democrats was the goal. “In the races I was involved in in 2008, when we started seeing the increase of turnout and the turnout operations that the Democrats were doing in early voting, it certainly sent a chill down our spines. And in 2008, it didn’t have the impact that we were afraid of. It got close, but it wasn’t the impact that they had this election cycle,” Bertsch said, referring to the fact that Democrats picked up seven legislative seats in Florida in 2012 despite the early voting limitations.

• Another GOP consultant, who did not want to be named, also confirmed that influential consultants to the Republican Party of Florida were intent on beating back Democratic turnout in early voting after 2008.

• [...]A GOP consultant who asked to remain anonymous out of fear of retribution said black voters were a concern. “I know that the cutting out of the Sunday before Election Day was one of their targets only because that’s a big day when the black churches organize themselves,” he said.

Though the state ultimately went to President Obama, the Republican effort to suppress votes was largely successful. A post-election report found that new voting restrictions led to a huge increase in provisional ballots, which are cast when there is some question of the voter’s eligibility.

While crying voter fraud, the Florida GOP had to confront its own scandal when a voter registration firm they hired turned in hundreds of fraudulent registration forms in several Florida counties. The GOP hastily cut ties with the group when the state opened a criminal investigation into their operations.

 



Petition for a Manatee County Human Rights Ordinance


This petition is to call on the Board of County Commissioners of Manatee County, Florida, U.S., to create a Human Rights Ordinance (HRO) that protects individual civil rights and prohibits discrimination in employment, housing, and public accommodations in all of Manatee County, Florida.

Across the United States, a myriad of States, Counties, Boroughs, and Municipalities have enacted HRO’s to ensure basic anti-discrimination civil rights, foster healthy economic and societal development, and encourage new employers and residents to locate to their areas. Local HRO’s also augment federal and state civil rights protections, some of which are limited to large employers and contain other loopholes.

Here in Florida, HRO’s have been enacted by Alachua, Broward, Leon, Orange, Miami-Dade, Monroe, Palm Beach, Pinellas, and Volusia Counties, and by the municipalities of St. Augustine, Miami, Miami Beach, North Miami, Sarasota, South Miami, Tampa, and Venice.

However, currently neither Manatee County nor any of the six municipalities in Manatee County provide basic civil rights anti-discrimination legal protections for LGBT people, active duty, Reserve, or National Guard military personnel, or veterans of the armed forces.

I want all of Manatee County to move forward with the other counties and municipalities in Florida and across the United States by taking a stand for the civil rights of all people by enacting a comprehensive HRO that prohibits discrimination in employment, housing, and public accommodations in all of Manatee County, Florida. Enacting a Manatee County HRO would send a clear message in support of economic development, fostering a diverse and resilient workforce, and make clear whether you work, live, vacation in, or visit Manatee County, that, “Everyone is truly welcome here.”

Sign the Petition

 



When radical Republicans control the Legislature...


This March, a very different kind of madness has struck Republicans up in Tallahassee.

As you may have heard, Florida has the chance to provide free medical insurance to more than one million families making less than $30,000 per year – and the federal government will pay the total cost of $51 billion! But the leaders of both chambers (radical Republicans each) have refused to give the issue any traction. That’s despite the fact that this is free money to provide health insurance to more than a million people – most of them women.

Our champions are working hard to convince them otherwise, but until we send them more allies, Republican power brokers just don’t have to listen. That’s why we’ve recruited Judithanne McLauchlan to run against Senator Jeff Brandes – the only senator who voted against taking these funds last year. Daisy Baez has been training with us for three years and is now running against Rep. Erik Fresen, who has one of the worst voting records on this issue and reproductive rights. And we must defend our at-risk incumbents – especially Reps. Karen Castor Dentel, Linda Stewart, and Barbara Watson – to make sure they are re-elected.

That’s why we so appreciate your support of Ruth’s List Florida and our work to elect (and re-elect) Democratic, pro-choice women to state and local office. Thank you. It’s great to have you on our team. March 31 marks the end of a very important fundraising period for us. At the end of the month, we'll report all the money we currently have on hand to defeat those radical Republicans who are holding up medical care for millions of Floridians.

Help us finish the month strong and give the GOP a good shock. Please make a special contribution now to help us power up these and other great candidates. Make it recurring to support us all the way to November.

Ellis M.M. Robinson, Co-Founder & Executive Director, Ruth's List

 



Cathy Jordan Medical Cannabis Act - renewed hope for marijuana patients


Many Floridians at Capitol at this very moment to be a part of this historical day! The proposed legislation is named after Cathy Jordan, president of the Florida Cannabis Action Network, because she has thrived despite a terminal diagnosis of Lou Gehrig's disease for more than 28 years. Cathy has advocated for access to this plant for nearly three decades renewing the hope for cannabis patients in Florida as this bill is filed into the Florida legislature today by Senator Jeff Clemens and Representative Joe Saunders.

Take A Minute Right Now To Encourage Your Representative To Take Leadership On The Cathy Jordan Medical Cannabis Act!

The Cathy Jordan Medical Cannabis Act is currently Filed. Step 2 of 6 of the Legislative Process. Click to learn more.

You can learn more about the bill and track its progress through the legislature on its way to becoming a law at the Cathy Jordan Medical Cannabis Act page.

Remember, donations are appreciated and confidential since we are not a division of United for Care. Visit the crowdfunding page and share it onto your friends!

Know where your elected officials stand on cannabis?

The Florida Cannabis Action Network, with you assistance, maintains a scorecard ranking each member of the Florida legislature on their position on cannabis reform. Click to learn more.

Visit the Let Florida Decide Legislative Scorecard page to help us further identify your member's position on cannabis reform and the Florida CAN Plan. With sensible cannabis policies that support the Florida CAN Plan, Florida will:

• Increase Public Safety
• Improve the Quality of Life for Patients
• Open Opportunities for Research
• Save Taxpayers Money
• Create a New Economic Engine

Don't you agree? If so, endorse the Florida CAN Plan!

 


Join our Mail List Click here to volunteer with the Manatee County Democratic Party Contribute to the Manatee Democratic Party Voter Information Join the Manatee Democratic Party GLBT Action Section

SCHEDULED MEETINGS

Precinct Development Team:

• TBD, 1:30 p.m.
DEC Headquarters, 6233 14th St. W., Bradenton.


Steering Committee Meeting:

• Monday, Oct. 20, 6 p.m.
DEC Headquarters, 6233 14th St. W., Bradenton.


DEC Monthly Meeting:

• Monday, Oct. 27, 6 p.m.
DEC Headquarters, 6233 14th St. W., Bradenton. For info, call 941-761-8385.
Program: TBD



See Clubs and Caucuses for their regular meeting information.

VOTE BY MAIL

UPCOMING EVENTS

Canvassing from the DEC Headquarters from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m., Saturdays, Oct. 4, 11, 18 and 25.



Manatee Phone Bank. Volunteers are needed now to call prospective voters, using a prepared script, to provide information about early voting and to help draw out every single vote, because this race is going to be very close. Until Nov. 4, these special, critically important phone banks will be at the Manatee Democratic Headquarters, 6233 14th St. W., Bradenton, every Tuesday from 6-9 p.m., Thursday from 6-9 p.m., and Saturday from 2-4 p.m., and/or 4-6 p.m.



Rhana Bazzini of Granny D fame will stop in our Mantee DEC office Oct. 13 for her walk to Tallahasse for financial reform. She will be taking a rest and fueling her body. Let’s all come and cheer her on this long walk.



Charlie Crist Political Debate at 7 p.m., Oct. 15. "Leadership Florida" will take place at Davie College in Broward County.



MTI Voter Registration at the Hispanic Festival with Pat Benson, Marion Marchese, Henry Lawrence and Terri Wonder from 4-8 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 18.



The annual Sarasota Pride Festival in Sarasota, Saturday, Oct. 18. Get more info at manateeglbta.wordpress.com/events.



Bay Fest on Anna Maria, Saturday, Oct. 18. Bill McGrath (send an email or call 941-761-4017) and Francine will be handling this event.



Charlie Crist Political Debate Oct. 21 on CNN. The location and moderators of this debate have not yet been announced.



Meet and Greet Henry Lawrence as he runs for a seat in the United States House of Representatives for Florida’s Congressional District. Get involved in the political discussion and get to know Henry Lawrence from 5:30-7:30 p.m., Friday, Oct. 24 at the home of Eva Talbert, 4979 Windsor Park, Sarasota. Suggested donation is $50 however any amount will be appreciated. Cocktails and appetizers will be served. For more info or to RSVP contact Eva Talbert at ertalbert@gmail.com or (941) 321-6933. Please make checks payable to Henry Lawrence for Congress, P.O. Box 1204, Tallevast, FL 34270. Visit HenryLawrenceForCongress.org.



Early Voting at the Supervisor of Elections. We need volunteers to cover three hour shifts, Oct. 25 through Nov. 1 on 301 Blvd. Pat Benson will be there every day from 7-10 a.m. to get it going unless we have some other volunteers. Larry Jennis will be putting it up and breaking it down every night. Please call Mary Bass to volunteer at 941-748-8536 or Democratic Headquarters at 941-761-8385. Mary has the signup sheet.



Information Table Staffing at the Manatee County Supervisor of Elections (SOE) office (across from Desoto Mall). Volunteers are needed for three-hour shifts to staff an information table, hand out literature and engage people who stop by the SOE office. The Republicans already have about 6-8 staff at all times. The shifts are on any day from Monday, Oct. 27 through Saturday, Nov. 1, from 7-10 a.m., 10 a.m.-1 p.m., 1-4 p.m., and 4-7 p.m. To sign up, contact Mary Bass, Manatee Democratic Party, at (941) 748-8536. Drop-by volunteers are also welcome.



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Visit the Calendar for events.

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The Rational Majority is a Pro- Obama group designed to confront the myths & misconceptions of Obama's first term in office. By reading daily Snap Caps, you can learn about factual pieces of legislation pertinent to current issues.

http://www.therationalmajority.org/

Paid for by the Manatee County Democratic Executive Committee, PO Box 10605, Bradenton, FL 34282,
(941) 761-8385, and not authorized by any federal candidate or candidate's committee.