As Congress debates the last steps needed to pass historic comprehensive health care reform, state legislators around the country have sent a letter to President Obama and Congress to urge them to complete the process and pass the health care reforms needed by the American people. The letter below, written on behalf of over 1000 legislators organized by the Progressive States Network in support of comprehensive reforms, urges that any compromises between the Senate and House use the majority vote process of reconciliation to circumvent obstruction through the use of a filibuster.
Last week in Detroit, state legislators and key organizational allies
of Progressive States Network came together at our annual Legislative Leadership Retreat
to plan our legislative work for 2010. Recognizing both the challenges
and opportunities facing progressives in the present economic and
political environment, participants planned an ambitious policy and
outreach strategy for the coming year. Held in conjunction with the Economic Analysis Research Network
(EARN) annual conference of policy organizations, the event was a
chance to discuss how progressive legislators could work more
effectively with each other and with organizational allies. The event
was a chance to celebrate the achievements of Progressive States
Network and its progressive legislators and organizational allies,
while planning for an even more successful future for the Network.
Last Wednesday, Progressive States Network brought state
legislative and advocate leaders to Washington, D.C. to meet with the White
House and Capitol Hill leaders to promote comprehensive national health care
reform. PSN's delegation brought with them a letter, signed by over 700 state legislators from 48
states, which demanded federal
health care reform that includes the choice of a public health insurance plan, strong
affordability protections, and shared employer responsibility for health care
Starting this week, PSN will begin a weekly series of video profiles of key members of our network from across the country. In these PSN Profiles, we hope to put a face on the multitude of state leaders who work tirelessly -- often with little reward or recognition on the national stage -- to lay the groundwork for a lasting American progressive majority.
From December 8-10th, over 50 legislators from 26 states joined the
Progressive States Network at Bally’s Hotel in Las Vegas for its first
annual Legislative Leadership Retreat. These fifty legislators met with
key advocacy allies to discuss both policy and legislative strategy for
the 2009 legislative sessions. The retreat was held in conjunction with
the annual conference of the Economic Research and Analysis Network
(EARN) to strengthen the state progressive movement at this key point
PSN announced today that its longtime Policy Director Nathan
Newman will take over as the organization's Interim Executive Director.
He will replace outgoing Executive Director and PSN Co-Founder Joel
Barkin, who will become Deputy Secretary of State for Public Affairs in
the office of New York Secretary of State Lorraine A. Cortes-Vazquez.
Today, PSN proudly announces a new Co-Chair and new members for its Board of Directors. Longtime PSN board member Representative Garnett Coleman of Houston, Texas will take up the position of Co-Chair alongside PSN Founding Co-Chair David Sirota. Wisconsin Senator Spencer Coggs, Maryland Delegate Tom Hucker, Georgia Senator Nan Orrock, Arizona Delegate Kyrsten Sinema, and Free Press Policy Director Ben Scott will all take on new roles as PSN board members.
On Monday, July 22nd, over one hundred and fifty
state legislators, labor leaders, and advocates participated in "Building
a Progressive Majority in the States," a joint annual meeting of the
Progressive States Network and the National Labor Caucus. Taking a cue from the opening plenary
policies for an economic downturn,
the conference focused on strategies for confronting the most
important issues facing America's working families, including
affordable health care, smart immigration policy, workers' rights,
green jobs, clean energy, and tax and budget reform. To address these
issues in more depth, PSN policy experts joined state legislative
leaders in smaller workshops that gave participants a chance to share
best practices and model legislation while developinglegislative
and winning strategies for 2009.
Wednesday, the Progressive States Network played host to national
luminaries and state leaders from all over the country to celebrate the
many victories achieved by the organization and its allies in the most
recent legislative session, and to build momentum for new victories in
the coming year.