14 Jan

Rally for ACA, Medicare, Medicaid & Social Security-1/15 12:30 – 2:30 pm Fresno 93720

170115 Save our Health Care & Safety Net - Ver 1

From: L. Traynor []
Sent: Friday, January 13, 2017 9:39 PM

Subject: Rally for ACA, Medicare, Medicaid & Social Security-1/15 12:30 – 2:30 pm Fresno 93720
Practically every American, certainly the bottom 98% of us benefits from Obamacare, Medicare, Social Security and/or Medicaid.
Both the Senate and the House have voted to repeal Obamacare which also affects the viability and benefits we receive thru Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security and other medical delivery organizations that serve the working class and the poor, because all these programs are tied together. Be aware that regardless as to what Trump campaigned on, the Republicans intend to eliminate ALL OF THEM.

There will be rallies all over the nation this Sunday. Fresnans must stand up in solidarity. Folks in the Central Valley depend on these programs and will be hurt if these programs are gutted and repealed.

I’m organizing a RALLY IN SUPPORT OF THE ACA, MEDICARE. MEDICAID, & SOCIAL SECURITY for this SUnday Jan 15 from 12:30 to 2:30 pm in the SE corner of Blackstone and Nees Fresno 93720 in solidarity with each other and with similar events happening all over the nation this Sunday.

This is a peaceful non-violent rally and everyone is expected to conduct themselves according to the highest civic standards of respect and civility.

I’m attaching a flyer I created on the fly. I will send out an invitation thru the facebook event page. For those who know us, Phil and I will be there. I hope you will show solidarity AND ATTEND. It’s important for me to know who is coming. I will also inform the local media about this event. Large numbers of people will send a clear message to our elected members of Congress.

Organizations who stand in support are encouraged to participate and bring their organizations’ banners.


The Flyer I created is attached. Feel free to print it and distribute it widely. A Facebook invitation will be sent out to all my friends. Please invite others.
I hope to see you there.

Linda Traynor


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14 Jan

LA Times: Cursing like a sailor, John Burton helped steer California into deep blue waters

Cursing like a sailor, John Burton helped steer California into deep blue waters
Los Angeles Times, January 12, 2017
By Phil Willon | Times Staff Writer

California Democratic Party Chairman John Burton stood before hundreds of loyalists at the party’s 2015 convention and introduced Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren with a thunderous, trademark F-bomb.

“She is the [expletive] champion of the American people,” he shouted, igniting a roar of applause.

It was an unvarnished glimpse of one of California’s most influential politicians, a man with a well-earned reputation for his gruff style and for swearing “more than a West Coast rapper,” as comedian John Oliver remarked while interviewing him for “The Daily Show.”

It was Burton’s charm and razor-sharp political instincts honed over more than a half-century in politics that convinced Democrats to tap the 84-year-old San Francisco power broker, a former congressman and state Senate president, to lead their state party for going on eight years now.

His reign, which ends in May, has coincided with escalating Democratic dominance in a state that was once led by Ronald Reagan. Under Burton, one of the state’s most devout disciples of liberal activism, Democrats are thriving in California while the party looks to regain its footing elsewhere in the U.S.

“It’s too bad he can’t be chair of the national party,” said former Assembly Speaker Willie Brown, a longtime Burton ally.

In the November election, California repelled the populist national uprising that swept Donald Trump into the White House and has emerged as something akin to a left-wing rebel base primed to counter Republicans now in control of Washington.

Democrats recaptured a powerful supermajorityin both houses of the California Legislature, preventing Republicans from blocking tax increases or proposed constitutional amendments. They have held every statewide elected office since 2010. Since 2008, the once-red counties of Fresno, Riverside and San Diego have flipped to blue. And with the Democrats’ edge over the GOP in voter registration growing to almost 19%, the party’s stranglehold on the state isn’t expected to loosen any time soon.

The party “is more professional than it’s ever been in the history of the party,” Gov. Jerry Brown, who served briefly as party chairman from 1989-91, told the Times.

A variety of political factors have contributed to the Democrats’ rise to supremacy in California, including a Latino population that has been growing in number as well as political influence. Latinos have overwhelmingly voted for Democrats, in no small part because of the wave of anti-immigrant rhetoric by GOP politicians, from former Republican Gov. Pete Wilson to President-elect Trump.

Brown and Burton said the state party has been able to capitalize on those trends, especially in recent years, by fundraising, organizing grassroots activists and shepherding party loyalists to the polls.

Alex Rooker, a vice chairman of the state party, praised Burton as one of the state’s “last liberal lions” devoted to protecting children, the homeless and other vulnerable Californians, but said it’s time for new leadership. While the party has devoted more resources to the county parties and grassroots activists under Burton, a number of local party leaders believe more can be done, Rooker said.

While the percentage of Californians registered as Republicans has been on a steady decline, the percentage of registered Democrats has been stagnant for more than 15 years — at roughly 45%. Meanwhile, more and more voters are registering as “no party preference,” and they now account for a quarter of all registered voters in the state.

Shawnda Westly, senior strategist for the California Democratic Party, said that when Burton took the helm in 2009, he worked quickly to dispel concerns by some grassroots activists that he would be “another elected official trying to tie our hands.” He began providing county chapters with the state party’s voter database and handed out door-hangers, political mailers and other essentials and funds to register voters.

Westly said one of Burton’s most significant victories was his push for Proposition 25 in 2010, the measure California voters approved allowing lawmakers to pass the state budget with a majority rather than a two-thirds vote — eviscerating one of the GOP’s most potent political bargaining tools in the Democratic-controlled Legislature.

Angie Tate, the chief fundraiser for Brown and the state party, said that under Burton, the party’s staff was slashed from 34 to 17 people. The party purchased and refurbished a Sacramento building for its new headquarters, freeing it from expensive office leases in the capital and Los Angeles. Those cost-saving moves, along with Burton’s prodigious fundraising ability, helped provide money the party needed to help Jerry Brown in the 2010 governor’s race against former eBay chief executive Meg Whitman, along with hotly contested down-ballot races, she said.

“Meg Whitman was driving through California throwing $150 million out the window,” Tate said. “We were able to spend the money we had to when it mattered.”

Until Burton rose to become the leader of state Senate in 1999, his political career had largely existed in the shadow of his late older brother, Rep. Phil Burton, a San Francisco liberal with bullish demeanor. His brother, who lost a 1976 bid for House majority leader by a single vote, helped carve out Burton’s successful path to the Assembly and later to Congress.

But the younger Burton’s five terms in Congress ended abruptly when, consumed by an addiction to cocaine and booze, he quit in 1982 and checked himself into rehab. He said he never looked back once he got well.

His political revival began six years later when, after a lucrative stint as an attorney in private practice, he was once again elected to the California Legislature.

Along with his shaggy gray hair and fondness for guayabera shirts, Burton was — and still is — known for his no-nonsense style and ample repertoire of vulgarities.

While those closest to him find those traits endearing and nonthreatening, not everyone feels the same. Rooker recalls Burton berating her with profanities after she unsuccessfully challenged him for party chair in 2009.

“I don’t think many of those things are acceptable any more,” Rooker said.

In 2008, the former executive director of the John Burton Foundation for Children Without Homes sued Burton for allegedly sexually harassing her. Burton denied the allegation and the matter was settled out of court.

State Board of Equalization member Fiona Ma, who broke into politics two decades ago as one of Burton’s Senate aides, said she doesn’t know of any politician who has given more opportunities to women. Recently retired U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer worked as one of Burton’s legislative aides before she headed to Washington, and he brought in two women as the state party’s top advisers, Ma said.

“The more John screams and cusses at you the more he loves you because he feels comfortable with you. That’s just how he is,” Ma said.

Burton’s departure will continue the slow but inevitable transformation of a state party leadership where a generation of younger Democrats have been blocked from ascending to California’s highest offices. Until this month, California’s two U.S. senators — Dianne Feinstein, 83, and Boxer, 76 — had served in Washington for more than two decades. Jerry Brown, 78, is serving a historic fourth term as California governor.

That barrier began to melt away in Novemberwhen former state Atty. Gen. Kamala Harris, 52, was elected to replace Boxer. Term limits will force Brown from the governor’s office in 2018, and with Feinstein up for reelection that same year, speculation abounds about whether she will retire.

Los Angeles County Democratic Party Chairman Eric Bauman appears to be the front-runner to replace Burton. Bauman faces a challenge by Kimberly Ellis of San Francisco, executive director of an organization dedicated to increasing the number of Democratic women in elected office. Party delegates will elect a new chair at the annual convention in Sacramento in May.

Burton said his successor should come in with the same attitude he had when he took over for longtime party chairman Art Torres. To make his point, Burton, an avid baseball fan, used a tale about former Los Angeles Dodgers manager Tommy Lasorda taking over as manager from Walter “Smokey” Alston in 1977.

During a conversation with Burton 20 years ago, Lasorda recalled being asked if he felt any pressure taking over for a Hall of Fame manager.

“I worry about the … who’s following me,” Lasorda, also known for spraying curse words on occasion, told Burton. “That’s where the pressure is going to be.”


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14 Jan

No Title


Today we are hard at work in Washington defending the values that we laid out in our campaign — justice, equality for all, and building the kind of tolerant society we have always strived for in California.

It was two years ago today that we launched this journey, and I am grateful for your role in our victory. I recognize that I would not have the honor of serving the people of our state without your support.

You have given me the responsibility to defend the voiceless and vulnerable in our society from those who will do them harm. I don’t take this lightly, and I promise I will never stop fighting for you.

In many ways our work has just begun, and I need to know you are still with me — not just for today, but for the months, years, and difficult fights ahead.

Can you make a $100 monthly recurring donation to our campaign as a way of recommitting to the cause of justice and equality in the coming months and years ahead?

In my first two weeks, I have hit the ground running.

My first action as your Senator was to co-sponsor legislation protecting the 744,000 DREAMers from being deported. I rose to the floor just two days ago to call out Senate Republicans who want to strip health insurance away from millions of Americans. And I have aggressively questioned President-elect Trump’s cabinet appointees on issues ranging from LGBT rights to a Muslim registry, climate change, immigration, and more.

Right now, we are on the frontlines defending basic principles that say it is wrong to play politics with public health policy, unacceptable to attack communities of color, and outright immoral to deport millions of people who have known no other home than the United States.

I intend to continue fighting on these issues and more — do you?

Add your $100 monthly recurring contribution right now and we’ll continue to build our coalition and fight for the values we outlined during our campaign >>

Do not underestimate your power. Stay engaged. Fight on.

Thanks for everything,



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12 Jan

2017 Annual Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration Events

MLK Events

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09 Jan

Kamala Harris: Join me in thanking Senator Boxer


Last week, I was honored to be officially sworn in as your U.S. senator.

I am very grateful and humbled for everything California Democrats like you have done to make our victory possible — and I am eager to get to work on behalf of the most voiceless and vulnerable in our society.

Never before has that work felt more urgent. With Republicans in the majority and Donald Trump in the White House, we have a lot of work ahead us — and I am committed to fighting for California and for our values.

As I roll up my sleeves, I am grateful to be carrying forward Senator Barbara Boxer’s progressive legacy. Senator Boxer has been a tireless champion in Congress for our state’s future. As she leaves the Senate, I know she would appreciate our best wishes and gratitude.

So I’m asking: Will you add your name to our card, thanking Senator Boxer for her service to California?

For so many years, Senator Boxer has fought fiercely for our environment, for women’s rights, for LGBTQ equality, for working families — the list goes on and on.

As we recommit ourselves to the struggle for justice and equality in the months and years to come, Senator Boxer’s unwavering commitment to standing up for what’s right throughout her years in Congress should serve as an inspiration to us all.

While Senator Boxer prepares for her next chapter in our shared fight for progress, I know she would appreciate hearing from her supporters.

Join me in thanking Senator Boxer for all her service to our state and our nation by adding your name to our card — and feel free to add your personal best wishes.


Kamala Harris
U.S. Senator


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08 Jan

No Title


Here’s the truth: the Affordable Care Act is about more than statistics or the wrong-headed politics of the Republican Party. This is a debate that matters to millions of Americans — particularly the most vulnerable among us — who are benefiting from the provisions of this program every single day.

can you add your name to Kamala’s petition as a way of saying it is morally wrong for the Republicans to take health insurance away from millions of Americans?


Please take a short moment to read Kamala’s email sharing some of the stories we have received about how the Affordable Care Act is helping millions of people. Thanks for everything.

———— Original Message from Senator Kamala Harris ————

I want you to read this story:

“My four-year-old son was born with Cerebral Palsy. When the Affordable Care Act was enacted, I was so relieved because I knew there would always be a way for my son to have healthcare coverage, even if I lost my job. Knowing that the Republicans want to repeal without replacing brings anxiety and loss of hope to our family.”

And this one:

“Being enrolled in the Affordable Care Act has been the most important factor in us getting our new small business off the ground. Because health insurance for my family is now affordable, we have been able to grow our business, contribute to our retirements, enroll our kids in sports and activities, and participate more fully in the local economy because our money is not all going to health insurance and copays… If the law is dismantled, I am very worried we will lose our business that we have worked for six years to build. Before we got on our ACA insurance, we were paying over $1,000 a month and depleted our savings completely.”

Since the Affordable Care Act was enacted in 2010, more than 68% of our state’s uninsured individuals have gained access to the quality and affordable health insurance they need — and a 129 million people across the country who would have been denied coverage for pre-existing conditions have access to health care.

As Attorney General for California, my office vigorously defended our nation’s health care reform — and I intend to do the same now that I am your U.S. Senator. I recognize that the Affordable Care Act isn’t perfect, but there are millions of people relying on us to fix and reform the law, not repeal it.

Please take a moment to read some of the thousands of stories we have received over the last few weeks about why the Affordable Care Act matters to so many working people, and then please sign our petition demanding the Republicans end their attacks on the ACA.

“Obamacare is the reason I was able to finally get help for bipolar disorder, which went untreated for six years when I couldn’t afford insurance. During those six years, my struggle with mental illness took a toll on my relationships, work, and school. Not only did Obamacare make insurance more affordable for me, but it guaranteed that my insurance carrier could not deny me coverage for behavioral health. I credit the treatment I received with helping me to mend relationships with family and friends and lending me the stability and support to finish my Master’s degree and find work. If Obamacare is repealed, I could potentially lose access to insurance due to a preexisting condition, have my insurance price dramatically increase, or lose access to the psychiatric care and medication that has benefited me so much.”

“My son graduated from college. As he looks to find a job and a career it is a relief that he can stay on our health insurance for a while.”

“My 24-year-old old son is a full-time college student who suffers from debilitating cluster headaches. Thanks to Obamacare, he is able to remain on our medical insurance to receive treatment. Without it, he wouldn’t be able to afford his medication, which costs $800/box without prescription coverage. Nor would he be able to continue receiving Oxygen therapy, which provides him a drug-free, pain reliever choice so he can attend his college classes.”

“Prior to the Affordable Care Act, I had been without health insurance for 20 years because I could not afford it.”

“A few years before Obamacare existed, a loved one of mine in grad school with a pre-existing condition was unable to get insurance to cover the urgent treatment he needed. There’s no greater pain than watching someone close to you suffering needlessly, and seeing their life upended after a medical emergency. No one should have to worry that we won’t be alright when the unexpected happens.”

“Our 28-year-old daughter is passionate about her work with an educational non-profit organization. However, it has so few employees that it does not offer any health insurance. The ACA made it possible for her to purchase affordable health insurance and she is covered. Otherwise, she would have no health insurance at all.”

“My sister suffers from an incurable kidney disease. The medications she takes are expensive, and, before Obamacare, her insurance wouldn’t cover the number of pills she needed to take in a day, much less the whole month. She was uncoverable by some standards as she had a preexisting condition. Since Obamacare, she has been able to gain health insurance and keep herself from going into debt just to pay for her medications. People like my sister wouldn’t survive without Obamacare.”

“I am a 55 year old, self-employed, single female with epilepsy. Prior to the ACA being put in place I paid $1000/month to be covered by Kaiser (the only insurance that would cover me because of epilepsy.) The ACA has allowed me to start saving a little for retirement.”

Click here to tell House and Senate Republicans: do not take health insurance away from millions of Americans by repealing the Affordable Care Act >>

It would be a national disgrace if our country stripped health benefits away from the most vulnerable among us. Instead, Republican leaders should do what the vast majority of Americans want: work with Democrats to advance commonsense reforms that will improve the law, not callously try to repeal it.

The success and failures of the ACA are not statistics or dollar signs; they are real people with real stories who are counting on us to do right by them.

I promised during the campaign that I would be on the frontlines of this fight if elected, and now that I am here, that is what I intend to do. Together, we will lead the resistance against any short-sighted legislation designed to gut our social contract for future generations.

Let’s get to work. Fight on.

– Kamala


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04 Jan

No Title


As we come out of the close of 2016, it is time to reflect upon the year that was, and a time to look forward and make plans to ensure that the future is something we can be proud of.

While we keep in mind the people we love, we must ensure that the choices we make will pave the way for a brighter and more secure tomorrow, and prepare for the struggles ahead to take back America. Our actions must be worthy of the memory of those we lost and live up to the lessons they taught us over the years.

In the coming weeks and months, Democratic activists in California along with our statewide, legislative, and local leaders, will be at the forefront of the battle for the sanity of our country, and we must relentlessly urge those who share our values to stand-up and join us in fight.

We must push open the doors of the Democratic Party to all who share our commitment to a progressive and people-centered world view, at the local, state and national levels – starting with encouraging all to participate in the California Democratic Party’s ADEM elections which are taking place this coming weekend, on January 7 and 8, 2017.

We must revitalize and strengthen our Democratic Clubs and local Democratic Parties to ensure activists in every part of our state have the support, resources and tools they need.

We must partner with allied progressive, labor, identity-focused, civil rights and issue-based organizations to ensure all who are part of the Democratic Party’s big tent remember that an injury to one is an injury to all.

We must find ways to harness the energy of the thousands of new volunteers who mobilized around the Presidential election and focus their attention on the Spring local elections which have a dramatic impact on our daily lives, and which build the farm team of future candidates, elected officials and leaders.

And we must encourage newly activated and engaged Democrats to attend the State Party’s annual Convention so they may become part of the conversations and planning for 2018, where we must not only maintain our strength in California, but again offer our support to our sisters, brothers and colleagues in other states. Their victories will be essential as we move towards the ever-important 2020 Presidential election and subsequent redistricting of Congressional and Legislative districts.

I ask you to please join with me to kick-off the new year with immediate action and renewed momentum. Stay tuned…

In Democratic Unity,

Eric C. Bauman
Vice-Chair, California Democratic Party
Chair, Los Angeles County Democratic Party

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