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Mole's Progressive Democrat

The Progressive Democrat Newsletter grew out of the frustration of the 2004 election. Originally intended for New York City progressives, its readership is now national. For anyone who wants to be alerted by email whenever this newsletter is updated (usually weekly), please send your email address and let me know what state you live in (so I can keep track of my readership).

Location: Brooklyn, New York, United States

I am a research biologist in NYC. Married with two kids living in Brooklyn.

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  • Wednesday, June 04, 2008

    ARIZONA FOCUS: Progressive Candidates, Groups and Events

    First I offer a list of local candidates for office in Arizona. Following that are some groups and events that might interest my readers. We just won a couple of these big races and some new names are on the list.

    Progressive Majority is one of the strongest and most successful progressive grassroots organizations out there. I have been pushing a few of their Arizona candidates and two of them just won historic victories. I want to share those two victories with you and introduce you to some new Progressive Majority candidates in Arizona. Remember, this is John McCain's state, so our wins there are particularly sweet.

    Corey Woods
    Candidate for Tempe City Council - At Large (Challenger)
    WE WON!!!

    Progressive Majority candidate Corey Woods made history this May, when he became the first African-American elected to Corey Woodsthe Tempe, Arizona City Council in its 114-year history!

    Corey's election, along with the election of fellow Democrat Joel Navarro, also power-shifts the Tempe City Council to a progressive majority!

    Congratulations, Corey!

    Corey's historic victory was the result of two years of hard work and strategic campaigning. Progressive Majority helped Corey develop his stump speech and created his campaign and fundraising plan. He knocked on thousands of doors and developed key community relationships by serving on numerous city and community boards. On his way to victory, Corey soundly defeated conservative incumbent Vice-Mayor Hut Hutson.

    Marquisha Griffin
    Candidate for Maricopa City Council - At Large (Challenger)
    WE WON!!!

    We won this seat in May as well! Congratulations to Marquisha!

    Marquisha Griffin is a 32-year-old candidate seeking a seat on the nonpartisan Maricopa City Council. She is the only female and the only person of color on the city council. Three seats are open on the council - two incumbents are seeking re-election and six additional candidates have filed. Marquisha is currently serving her third term on the City of Maricopa Planning and Zoning Commission. She volunteers at local charity events and city sponsored activities and is currently employed by the City of Mesa as a City Council Assistant to its council. The incumbent, Kelly Haddad, may be removed from the ballot for soliciting nominating petition signatures from city employees at city hall.

    Don Jorgensen
    Candidate for Arizona State Assembly - District 26 (Open Seat)
    Northern Tuscon and Oro Valley

    Don Jorgensen, Ph.D., is running for an open seat in the Arizona House of Representatives Legislative District 26. He is a small business owner who serves on the Board of the Compass Healthcare Foundation and the Tucson/Pima County Commission on Addiction, Prevention, and Treatment. He has also served on the Arizona State Board of Behavioral Health Examiners, the YMCA of Metropolitan Tucson and is the former President of Great Tucson Leadership. In 2006, farm team member Lena Saradnik picked up this seat for the Democrats when an ultraconservative Republican emerged from the primary. Three Republicans have filed to run at this time; two are far right-wingers and one is positioning himself as a moderate.

    Click here to support and learn more about Don.


    Angela Cotera
    Candidate for State Senate - District 12 (Open Seat)
    Avondale, Buckeye, El Mirage, Goodyear, Litchfield Park

    Angela Cotera is an astrophysicist seeking office for the first time. She is running for the Senate in District 12. This district is in the fast-growing far western portion of Maricopa County and is part of our strategic plan. It includes the town of Avondale where last fall we fielded Marie Lopez Rogers in her successful race for mayor. While it is technically an open seat, ultra-conservative John Nelson, who is term-limited out of his Assembly seat, is attempting to trade seats with conservative Robert Blendu, the current Senate incumbent. In 2006, no Democrat ran for the Senate in District 12. Angela, grew up in Flagstaff. She holds a Ph.D. in applied physics from Stanford University and is a research astrophysicist for the Carl Sagan Center, SETI Institute. She has volunteered in schools for years to bring her passion for astronomy to students. She and her husband have lived in Avondale since 1991. During the 2006 elections, her frustration with elected political leaders at the local, state and national levels compelled her to run for office to change the political landscape of Arizona. Angela will provide representation to Arizona's Latino/a community as a Latina State Senator. She is running as a participating candidate under the Arizona Clean Elections law.

    Ted Maish
    Candidate for State Senate - District 20 (Challenger)
    Portions of Phoenix, Tempe, and Chandler

    Ted Maish is a first-time candidate running for the State Senate in District 20. He is a precinct committee member and former teachers' union leader. He is challenging incumbent John Huppenthal, who is waging some of the right wing's most destructive battles. Huppenthal is one of the architects of a school voucher policy that was designed to undermine funding for public schools while providing a significant tax loophole to Arizona corporations. Legislative District 20 is one of the Democratic Party's top targets in 2008, as it is the most Democratic district in the state in which Republicans hold all three seats (two House, one Senate). Ted will bring a strong pro-labor voice to the legislature. He will also be a tireless advocate for Arizona's teachers and schoolchildren who suffer in some of the most under-funded classrooms in the country. Ted also advocates for healthcare reform to make Arizona a leader in protecting children, seniors, and working families.

    Click here to support and learn more about Ted.

    Shawn Hutchinson
    Candidate for State Representative - District 9 (Open Seat)
    Northwest Maricopa County, including Peoria, Glendale and Sun City

    Shawn Hutchinson is a first-time candidate and union member running for the Arizona House of Representatives. This district will have one incumbent and one conservative held open seat. For Arizona House races, the top two finishers among the two Democratic and the two Republican candidates are elected. We recruited Shawn in August 2007 when we were working with his brother-in-law, John Williams, who ran successfully for the Surprise City Council. The incumbent in Shawn's race, Rick Murphy, is a right-wing conservative who is unpopular in his own caucus. Shawn is a third generation International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) member and sits on the executive board of IBEW 640. He and his wife, a school teacher, have three daughters. He is running under Arizona's Clean Elections law.

    Click here to support and learn more about Shawn.

    David Scanlon
    Candidate for State Representative - District 12 (Open Seat)
    Avondale, Buckeye, El Mirage, Goodyear, Litchfield Park

    For the last 17 years, David Scanlon has served on the Pendergast School Board. He is running for the first time for the State House seat in District 12. This district is in the fast-growing far western portion of Maricopa County. In 2006, no Democrats ran in the district. David will face one of three ultra-conservative Republicans vying for the seat. He is an attorney and his wife is a public school teacher. As a school board member, David brought a stringed instrument program to the school at no taxpayer cost. Under his leadership, all schools in the district will have gymnasiums for use both during the school day and also for after school programs and summer usage. As an attorney, he has represented the elderly and people with disabilities against those who would take financial advantage. As a legislator, he will use his knowledge to tighten the law and fight to protect these very vulnerable members of our society. He is a participating Clean Elections candidate.

    Click here to support and learn more about David.

    Pat Fleming
    Candidate for State Representative - District 25 (Open Seat)
    Bisbee, Douglas, Gila Bend, Marana, and Nogales

    Progressive Majority fielded Pat for her in her first bid for the House in District 25 in 2006 against an entrenched incumbent. While unsuccessful, Pat ran a great race and is running again, this time for an open seat. Pat is a retired member of AFGE, the federal government employees union. District 25 is a sprawling rural district that runs along much of the Mexican border where illegal crossing is occurring. Pat is retired from the Department of the Defense, where she oversaw multi-million dollars budgets. She is a Clean Elections candidate.

    Click here to support and learn more about Pat.

    Andrea Dalessandro
    Candidate for State Representative - District 30 (Open Seat)
    Southern Pima County, Santa Cruz County, Cochise County

    Andrea Dalessandro is a first-time candidate running for the House of Representatives in District 30, which has two open seats currently held by Republicans. Andrea is a graduate of Emerge, our partner organization. She is a certified public accountant and a former high school math teacher. For Arizona House races, the top two finishers among the two democratic and the two republican primary victors are elected. Andrea is the only Democrat running for the House. Four Republicans are running for two slots on the general election ballot. Two are running as participating Clean Elections candidates and two are running traditionally. This race is viable due in large part to Andrea's tireless campaigning in the last year.

    Click here to support and learn more about Andrea.

    Ed Hermes
    Candidate for Maricopa County Supervisor - District 1 (Challenger)

    Ed Hermes is running for the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors, District 1. Ed is a 23-year-old up-and-coming politician with a very bright future. At his young age, he has already served two years on the Arizona Board of Regents, which oversees Arizona's university system, and has been an outspoken and prominent advocate for students facing double-digit percentage tuition increases. Ed also served as political director of Ironworkers 75 and has applied to join SEIU. He currently serves as the Director of External Affairs for the Arizona Department of Agriculture, where he oversees the communication, legislative affairs and community outreach for the department. Ed's opponent is a three-term incumbent with strong ties to anti-environment developers and has never faced a competitive election. Ed's campaign will focus on holding the Board of Supervisors accountable for out-of-control spending, government waste, and failure to exercise oversight over other scandal-ridden Republican officials.

    Click here to support and learn more about Ed.

    Rick Heumann
    Candidate for Chandler City Council - At Large (Open Seat)

    Rick Heumann, who is running for the Chandler City Council, is a long-time resident of Chandler and has been active in the community for more than 20 years. Rick has served eight years on the city planning and zoning commission, has served on several other city commissions, and has been president of a large homeowner's association. Chandler is a conservative community east of Phoenix, but a well-run progressive campaign can succeed there. Progressive Majority candidate Trinity Donovan was the top vote-getter in Chandler's elections two years ago, and as the lone progressive on the council, she now she needs help to move forward a progressive agenda. On the council, Rick will advocate smart and sustainable growth policies, expansion of mass transit, and a greater emphasis on parks and other city services that increase quality of life.

    Click here to support and learn more about Rick.

    Robin Stamp
    Candidate for Madison Elementary School Board - At Large (Open Seat)

    Robin Stamp is a first-time candidate for the Madison Elementary School District Governing Board. Robin, 30, was a Fellow at the Center for Progressive Leadership and works for the Arizona Attorney General's office in its consumer outreach division.

    Robin is dedicated to safer schools for our children. In his position as an Outreach Coordinator for the Attorney General, Robin has extensive experience working with students, teachers, administrators, and parents on school safety.

    Robin understands the importance of a supportive work environment for Arizona's educators. One of Robin's primary goals is to attract and retain top teachers in Madison School District. Robin's vision is for the district to be the leader in 21st century education, and he believes we must educate our children to be leaders and innovators in the new global economy.

    Click here to support and learn more about Robin.

    Here are some Groups and Events in Arizona:

    12th Native American Youth Entrepreneur Camp
    July 20-25, 2008
    University of Arizona campus
    Tucson, Arizona

    Join us at the 12th Native American Youth Entrepreneur Camp July 20-25, 2008, on the campus of The University of Arizona in Tucson.

    Learn to build private-sector enterprises in Indian Country. Visit Native-owned businesses. Enjoy extracurricular activities on and off the UA campus.

    Like the real world, the camp is intensive and challenging, but rewarding and fun!

    During the six-day camp, students will reside on campus, eat in the Student Memorial Union, and attend classes on the UA campus.

    Register by July 1.

    For more information, contact Monica Agar at cortes_at_u.arizona.edu or call (520) 626-0664.

    DFA of Phoenix Monthly Meeting
    Democracy for America meets the first Monday of the month at IHOP at the corner of 44th St. and Thomas Rd at 7PM
    Contact: Toby Stohl at 602.955-9050 for more information
    Website: www.dfalink.com/az-vote

    The Phoenix Alternative Energy Meetup Group

    All Alternative Energy Meetups are scheduled to meet at 1:30pm on the second Saturday of each month. We are searching for a permanent location. Event fee: $1.00 per person

    Please join us for discussions and activities on various subjects related to energy use and alternatives to our current carbon-based system.

    For more info, sign up here.

    Weekly Women in Black Peace Vigil - Every Fri. Protest the occupations in Iraq and Palestine, and the use of war, violence, and terrorism everywhere. Everyone welcome, please wear black & maintain a peaceful presence. 5 - 6 pm. Corner of Euclid and Speedway, Tucson. Free. (407-1432)

    Monthly Meeting - District 17 Democrats - Pyle Center
    When: second Tuesday of every month, 6:30 PM
    Where: 655 E Southern Ave, Tempe, AZ

    Northeast Phoenix Women in Blue
    Monthly at 6:30 PM on the second Monday of each month at The Market Place, 777 Thunderbird, Phoenix

    District 20 Democrats Meeting
    Monthly at 7:00 PM on the second Monday of each month at the Ahwatukee Fire House

    For more info go here: http://ld20.maricopademocrats.org/

    Distroct 10 Democrats Meeting
    Monthly at 7:00 PM on the first Thursday of each month at the Denny's at I17 & Dunlap

    Greater Phoenix - IMPEACH BUSH/CHENEY
    Meet nearby Activists working together towards the goal of the Impeach Bush (and Cheney)! Come to an Impeach Meetup to join their appeal to Congress to impeach George W. Bush and Dick Cheney for high crimes and misdemeanors. For more info, sign up here.

    And for those who are interested in combining social events and politics, here are the Drinking Liberaly events in Arizona:

    Flagstaff, Arizona
    * Second Thursday of each month, 6:00-8:00 pm
    * Bigfoot Bar-B-Q, 120 N Leroux St (basement of Old Town Shops)
    * Hosted by Andy Stevenson and George Castleberry, flagstaff (at) drinkingliberally.org

    * Every other Thursday, 5:30-9:00 pm
    * Rosie McCaffrey's Irish Pub, 906 E Camelback Rd (9th St & Cameback on the North Side)
    * http://www.rosiemccaffreys.com/index.htm
    * Hosted by Stuart Dollar, phoenix (at) drinkingliberally.org

    * First Saturday of each month, 5:30 to 8:30
    * Epicurean Wine Bar, 7101 E Thunderbird Rd (Southwest corner of Scottsdale Rd & T'bird)
    * On T'bird at the west end of the retail area. It's tucked away and not hugely visible from the road.
    * Starting in February, we will be meeting the first Saturday of each month.
    * Please join us for a quick drink or the entire evening as we unite in promoting democracy one pint at a time! Cheers!!!
    * Hosted by Vicki Billing, Susan Fletcher and Maureen Young, scottsdale (at) drinkingliberally.org

    Tucson, Arizona
    * Every Thursday, 6:00 pm onward
    * The Shanty, 401 E 9th St (Fourth Ave. at the underpass)
    * Please visit our chapter's web site for schedules, book club info, and more: http://arizona.typepad.com/drinkingliberally
    * Hosted by Michael Bryan, Tasha Nelson and Shasta McManus, tucson (at) drinkingliberally.org


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