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Progressive Block Loses 14 Members: Join DFA and FDL and Tell Them We Stand United

FDL ActionUpdate: We are trying to find out the names of the 14 who have defected since they’re not named in the Hill article.  Will let everyone know as soon as we do.

On July 31, 60 Democrats in the House signed a letter saying they would vote against any health care bill that does not have a robust public option. They wrote in protest over Blue Dog efforts, led by Mike Ross, to hold the House bill "hostage" and gut it. Now, according to an interview with Raul Grijalva in The Hill, that number is down to 46:

Grijalva noted that 46 members recently signed a letter pledging to vote against the centrist plan. In the numbers game of the House, that is significant, because Republicans are expected to unite against the healthcare bill. So if 39 Democrats oppose the plan, it wouldn’t get the 218 votes needed to pass. There are 52 Blue Dogs, as well as many other centrist members not in the coalition.

Grijalva began this whip count on September 14, and evidently 14 Democrats have defected since signing the July 31 letter. Small wonder — despite tremendous popular support for their strong position, they are up against leadership and the White House, who have threatened progressive organizations and called them "fucking stupid" for defending the public option from Blue Dog attack.

It’s time for progressive organizations, for labor unions and community groups and individuals to get their backs. Richard Trumka shouldn’t have to be the only one out there taking all the political risks and having AFL-CIO members threatened with huge tax burdens by Congress if he doesn’t drop his support for a public option.

Progressives organizations need to come together and say that they will be there for the members of Congress who are always there for us. Because, if we don’t, we’ve been down this road too many times before. FISA. The war. Military commissions. It may be paved with the "good intentions" of progressives — but we know where it always goes.

Maxine Waters. Keith Ellison. Jerrold Nadler. Emanuel Cleaver. Lloyd Doggett. Bob Filner. Chellie Pingree. Lynn Woolsey. John Conyers. These are the names we see over and over again, fighting for health care and the environment and worker’s rights and civil liberties. For choice and marriage equality and financial regulation and free speech. They are standing up for what we believe in, resisting the influence of lobbyist money and Rahm Emanuel’s thuggery, and if we don’t support them when everything is on the line, there is no progressive movement in this country — we’re just going through the motions on the way to inevitable defeat.

They are our Health Care Heroes.

The passionate, vocal commitment of these progressive members to true health care reform has emboldened even those on the Senate Finance Committee. But it is public, not institutional support that has given them the ability to hold out as long as they have. Quietly, Rahm Emanuel is doing to these members what he’s doing to Richard Trumka — hammering them mercilessly until they accept the insurance industry bailout he negotiated long ago.

Please sign the DFA/FDL petition and let them know that you will stand with these progressives all the way through conference in their commitment to block the passage of any bill that does not include a strong public option. Tell us if you’re a member of a progressive group or institution, or even if you’re on their email list. Then contact that group and ask them if they, too, will publicly declare their support for these members of Congress who are our firewall in the health care battle.

Just like members of Congress need the support of progressive groups, those groups need the support of their members. Let them know that you will be there for them if they stand strong behind those who are fighting for us.

Sign on and send a message: The Progressive Block stands united.

CommunityFDL Action

Progressive Block Loses 14 Members: Join DFA and FDL and Tell Them We Stand United

FDL ActionUpdate: We are trying to find out the names of the 14 who have defected since they’re not named in the Hill article.  Will let everyone know as soon as we do.

On July 31, 60 Democrats in the House signed a letter saying they would vote against any health care bill that does not have a robust public option. They wrote in protest over Blue Dog efforts, led by Mike Ross, to hold the House bill "hostage" and gut it. Now, according to an interview with Raul Grijalva in The Hill, that number is down to 46:

Grijalva noted that 46 members recently signed a letter pledging to vote against the centrist plan. In the numbers game of the House, that is significant, because Republicans are expected to unite against the healthcare bill. So if 39 Democrats oppose the plan, it wouldn’t get the 218 votes needed to pass. There are 52 Blue Dogs, as well as many other centrist members not in the coalition.

Grijalva began this whip count on September 14, and evidently 14 Democrats have defected since signing the July 31 letter. Small wonder — despite tremendous popular support for their strong position, they are up against leadership and the White House who have threatened progressive organizations and called them "fucking stupid" for defending the public option from Blue Dog attack.

It’s time for progressive organizations, for labor unions and community groups and individuals to get their backs. Richard Trumka shouldn’t have to be the only one out there taking all the political risks and having AFL-CIO members threatened with huge tax burdens by Congress if he doesn’t drop his support for a public option.

Progressives organizations need to come together and say that they will be there for the members of Congress who are always there for us. Because if we don’t, we’ve been down this road too many times before. FISA. The war. Military commissions. It may be paved with the "good intentions" of progressives — but we know where it always goes.

Maxine Waters. Keith Ellison. Jerrold Nadler. Emanuel Cleaver. Lloyd Doggett. Bob Filner. Chellie Pingree. Lynn Woolsey. John Conyers. These are the names we see over and over again, fighting for health care and the environment and worker’s rights and civil liberties. For choice and marriage equality and financial regulation and free speech. They are standing up for what we believe in, resisting the influence of lobbyist money and Rahm Emanuel’s thuggery, and if we don’t support them when everything is on the line, there is no progressive movement in this country — we’re just going through the motions on the way to inevitable defeat.

They are our Health Care Heroes.

The passionate, vocal commitment of these progressive members to true health care reform has emboldened even those on the Senate Finance Committee. But it is public, not institutional support that has given them the ability to hold out as long as they have. Quietly, Rahm Emanuel is doing to these members what he’s doing to Richard Trumka — hammering them mercilessly until they accept the insurance industry bailout he negotiated long ago.

Please sign the DFA/FDL petition and let them know that you will stand with these progressives all the way through conference in their commitment to block the passage of any bill that does not include a strong public option. Tell us if you’re a member of a progressive group or institution, or even if you’re on their email list. Then contact that group and ask them if they, too, will publicly declare their support for these members of Congress who are our firewall in the health care battle.

Just like members of Congress need the support of progressive groups, those groups need the support of their members. Let them know that you will be there for them if they stand strong behind those who are fighting for us.

Sign on and send a message: The Progressive Block stands united.

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Jane Hamsher

Jane Hamsher

Jane is the founder of Firedoglake.com. Her work has also appeared on the Huffington Post, Alternet and The American Prospect. She’s the author of the best selling book Killer Instinct and has produced such films Natural Born Killers and Permanent Midnight. She lives in Washington DC.
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