Thank you to all who attended our February program on resisting the Trump Agenda, whether in-person or by watching our livestream. As I said that night, you give me hope, and the sheer numbers who showed up was inspiring. We hope to see you all again in March, when the topic will be protecting Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid from the Republican juggernaut, and a presentation on trafficking for International Women’s Day.
The Dodgy Republican President
We’re 4 weeks into the Republican presidency. And by February 9th – the last date for which information is available on www.whitehouse.gov, the former reality TV host had issued 23 Executive Orders, which if he continues at that pace works out to a rate of 399 per year, the highest of any president in history, and more than 10X the rate of Presidents Barack Obama and George W. Bush. Meanwhile, Congressional Republicans who were so outraged at the 129 Executive Orders signed by President Obama during his second term remain silent. So where is the Republican outrage at “presidential overreach” now? Like most Republican outrage, it was nothing but false outrage manufactured for consumption by our facile and ratings obsessed television news organizations.
March 8, 2017 Meeting Notice
The Hall at Fauntleroy, 9131 California Ave SW
Across from the YMCA – Parking behind the Hall
Accessible by Metro “C” Line
6:30 – Potluck Social Time
7:00 – Meeting
International Women’s Day
March 8th is International Women’s Day and we will feature former State Representative Velma Veloria speaking on the relationship between human trafficking and international trade agreements.
Saving Social Security, Medicaid and Medicare
Longtime activist Robby Stern from PSARA (Puget Sound Advocates for Retirement Action) will be speaking on threats to Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid and what we can do to resist them.
Resolutions will be considered.
9:00 – Adjournment
David Ginsberg | Chair
Treina Aronson | First Vice Chair
Michael Taylor-Judd | Second Vice Chair
Lisa Plymate | State Committeewoman
Chris Porter | State Committeeman
Carrie Alexander | King Co. Committeewoman
Martha Koester | King Co. Committeewoman Alt.
Les Treall | King Co. Committeeman
Ted Barker | King Co. Committeeman Alt.
Jason Cheung | Secretary
Gina Topp | Treasurer
Michael Taylor-Judd | Bylaws
Kyle Prete | Data & Technology
Carrie Alexander | Digital Communications
Sean Riley | Diversity & Inclusion
Jacob Holt | Events
Finance – Vacant
Elisabeth Rose Astwood | Fundraising
Kate Riley | Hospitality
Ann Martin | Legislative Action
Joy Pakulak | Membership
Steve Butts & Karen Richter | Outreach
Kathy Marshall | PCO Coordination
Treina Aronson | Volunteer Recruitment
Steve Butts | Newsletter Editor
Allan Munro | Parliamentarian
Nick Bohall | Web Editor
A Resolution Regarding Social Security
A RESOLUTION supporting the expansion of Social Security and the elimination of the cap on earnings that are subject to the Social Security payroll tax, and directing the Executive Board of the 34th District Democrats to distribute this motion to the King County Central Committee, the Washington State Democratic Central Committee and Washington’s con- gressional delegation.
WHEREAS: The gap between the pensions and retirement savings American households actually have and what they need in order to maintain their standard of living was $7.7 trillion as of 2013, and
WHEREAS: Forty-seven percent of working-age families had nothing saved in retirement accounts, and the median working-age family had only $5,000 saved, as of 2013, and
WHEREAS: One in three American families had no savings at all, and 56.3 percent of Americans had less than $1,000 in their checking and savings accounts, as of 2015, and
WHEREAS: As of 2011, only about half of United States workers participated in a work- place retirement plan, and only ten percent of all private sector establishments provided defined benefit plans, covering just eighteen percent of private industry employees, and
WHEREAS: As of June 2015, Social Security retiree benefits averaged only about $1,300 per month, and among elderly Social Security beneficiaries, fifty-three percent of married couples and seventy-four percent of unmarried persons received most of their income from Social Security, and
WHEREAS: As of July 1, 2015, 12.4 percent of the King County population was sixty-five years old and older, and 26.3 percent was between forty-five and sixty-four years old, and
WHEREAS: People of color made up 32.3 percent of King County’s population in 2014, and among seniors sixty-five years old and older in 2012 Social Security was the sole source of income for forty-three percent of Hispanics, thirty-seven percent of African Americans and thirty-two percent of Asian and Pacific Islanders, compared to twenty-two percent of whites, and
WHEREAS: As of April 1, 2015, women constituted 55.7 percent of King County’s popula- tion over sixty-five years old, and in 2013 the average annual Social Security income re- ceived by women sixty-five years old and older was $12,857, compared with $16,590 for men, and
WHEREAS: All wage earners who earn above the cap of $127,200 pay no payroll tax on all of their earnings above the cap, thereby paying an effective tax rate lower than that of wage earners who earn less than the cap, and
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT MOVED by the 34th District Democrats that:
- Social Security benefits should be expanded to address the growing crisis of finan- cial insecurity among present and future Social Security
- The cap on earnings that are subject to the Social Security payroll tax should be eliminated to pay for the expansion of Social Security
- The Executive Board of the 34th District Democrats is directed to send a copy of this motion to the King County Democratic Central Committee, the Washington State De- mocratic Central Committee and each member of Washington’s congressional
Submitted by Karen Richter
Members of the 34th Democrats attend the Washington State Democrats reorganization meeting December 28
Left to right are: Chris Porter, Ann Martin, Bruce Stotler, Lisa Plymate and David Ginsberg
34th District Democrats Meetings
All meetings of the 34th District Democrats are open to any of our members.
Puget Ridge Co-Housing Common House
7020 18th Ave SW
Wednesday, March 15, 7:00 p.m.
Other Meetings or Events:
West Seattle Drinking Liberally
Pizzeria 22, 4213 SW College St.
Tuesday, March 7, 6:00 pm
Evergreen Democratic Club
Angelo’s Italian Restaurant
601 SW 153rd St., Burien
Tuesday, March 14, 11:30 am
Metropolitan Democratic Club
Plaza 600 Building #205, 600 Stewart St
2nd and 4th Wednesdays, 12-1:30 pm
Burien Drinking Liberally – NEW LOCATION
435 SW 152nd St
Thursday, March 23, 7 pm
West Seattle Democratic Women
Check www.westseattledemocraticwomen.org For information
King County Democrats Monthly Meeting
Tuesday, March 28, 7:00 p.m.
Teamsters Hall in Tukwila
14675 Interurban Ave S, Tukwila, 98168
Join other 34th Democrats at the
White Center 5K Run (and Walk) Race – March 25
8:00 Doors Opens to the public 8:45 Warm-Up Activity
9:00 Racers Begin
9:10 Walkers Begin
10:00 Entertainment, Race Winners Announced
Registration includes a free T-SHIRT!
The course is pet friendly, stroller friendly, and wheelchair accessible.
$35 ($25 for those 60+)
Register by March 13 at: www.whitecenter5k.brownpapertickets.com Or Contact Diversity Chair Sean Riley.
Members pose with Senator Sharon Nelson at Lobby Day 2017
Contact Information and Committee Assignments for Our Legislators
Senator Sharon Nelson
Senate Democratic Leader
316 Legislative Building
PO Box 40434
Olympia, WA 98504
(360) 786 – 7667
Representative Eileen Cody
Chair, Health and Wellness
303 John L. O’Brien Building
PO Box 40600
Olympia, WA 98504
(360) 786 – 7978
Representative Joe Fitzgibbon
305 John L. O’Brien Building
PO Box 40600
Olympia, WA 98504
(360) 786 – 7952
Resolution in Support of HB 1646 which Creates a Carbon Tax that Allows for Investment in Clean Energy
Whereas, the burning of fossil fuels creates air pollution that causes impaired lung function, shortness of breath, wheezing, asthma attacks and premature death;
Whereas, the burning of fossil fuels generates greenhouse gases that cause climate change which according to the World Health Organiza- tion, the Center for Disease Control, and the University of Washington Climate Impacts Group is a major public health risk;
Whereas, unless action is undertaken without further delay to return the atmospheric concentration of CO2 to no more than 350 ppm by 2100, Earth’s climate system will be pressed toward irreversible, ever- worsening, climate-related impacts;
Whereas, transitioning off of fossil fuels towards a 100% renewable energy economy is in the best interests of the residents and citizens of Washington;
Whereas, nationally, renewable energy businesses are creating jobs 12 times faster than the rest of the economy;
Whereas, a carbon tax is recommended by many economists as a way to promote the just transition from fossil fuel to renewable energy; and thereby, improve our health and create jobs for our communities in the renewable energy economy;
Whereas, HB would use the proceeds of a carbon tax fund to invest in clean energy, clean air, healthy forests, and Washington’s dispropor- tionately impacted communities;
Whereas, HB 1646 would strengthen greenhouse emissions limits for the State of Washington;
Whereas, HB 1646 is sponsored by representatives Eileen Cody and Joe Fitzgibbon, and endorsed by Front and Centered, Got Green and the Alliance for Jobs and Clean Energy;
Now, Therefore Be it resolved:
That the 34th District Democratic Organization urges our caucus in Olympia to give their very highest level of support to House Bill 1646 (Senate Bill 5509). We believe this bill will benefit our communities by improving our health, bringing new jobs and protecting young people’s rights to a healthy climate system.
Submitted by Stu Yarfitz
On Friday February 4th, Bob Ferguson was in US Federal Court seeking to stop Donald Trump’s travel ban. 34th Dems member Patrick Wicklund stood in support of our Attorney General de- spite the inclement weather. Our local paper of record referred to him as “a person”, but 25 news organizations across the country – from the Poughkeepsie Journal to NPR and USA Today gave Patrick proper recognition for his peaceful resistance on a rainy day. Thank you Patrick!
Resolution Opposing Attacks on Our Health Benefits
WHEREAS: Comprehensive health benefits are essential to ensuring working families and retirees can get the health care they need, when they need it;
WHEREAS: Health insurance should be affordable for all Americans;
WHEREAS: Medicare is a promise to the American people that must be kept for current and future generations, including the 55 mil- lion seniors and people with disabilities enrolled today and the many millions more counting on it for their retirement;
WHEREAS: The Affordable Care Act (ACA) was an important step toward providing comprehensive, affordable health care for all;
WHEREAS: Repealing the ACA without a replacement will put 30 million people at risk of losing their health benefits entirely and strip away vital protections and benefits from the many millions more with Medicare, Medicaid, and workplace coverage;
WHEREAS: More than 74 million people get health benefits through Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP);
WHEREAS: Repealing the Affordable Care Act in its entirety will take health benefits away from the approximately 11 million people who gained coverage through that law’s Medicaid expansion.
WHEREAS: Cutting federal funding to Washington for Medicaid through block grants or per capita caps will shift health care costs onto our state, force impossible choices between cutting health benefits or even eliminating eligibility for them, take funding away from other essential services, and require state taxpayers to pay more;
WHEREAS: Cutting federal funding to Washington for Medicaid will threaten the health care, nursing home care and the long-term supports and the services that allow seniors and people of all ages with disabilities to live independently in their own homes and communities;
BE IT RESOLVED THAT:
The 34th LD Democrats oppose any and all attacks on our health benefits; AND BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED:
We call upon all members of Congress representing the people of Washington to oppose any and all attacks on our health benefits, including legislation that:
- Turns Medicare into a voucher system, increases the Medicare eligibility age beyond 65, or in any other way cuts seniors’ Medi- care benefits or shifts additional costs onto them;
- Imposes new taxes on or otherwise threatens the health benefits working people earn on the job;
- Repeals the Affordable Care Act without a replacement plan that ensures that anyone with coverage today is able to afford it and keep it and that maintains key protections for all working families and seniors;
- Repeals the Affordable Care Act’s expansion of Medicaid benefits to millions of people; or
- Block grants or imposes a per capita cap on federal funding for Medicaid; AND BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED:
The 34th LD Democrats calls upon all members of Congress representing the people of Washington to support real reforms that bring us closer to the goal of providing comprehensive, affordable health coverage for all by strengthening and expanding health benefits and controlling and lowering health care costs, so that everyone in America can get the care they need, when they need it. This should include consideration of a public option and single payer system.
Respectfully submitted, Lisa Plymate, MD,
Kathy Marshall introduces 9 newly appointed and 7 acting PCOs at our February meeting.