We the People Dispatch: Voter Guide to MN 30A an 60A Special Elections

January 2, 2020

 We the People Dispatch

Contents of this Newsletter:

●      HD30A and HD60A Special Elections Voter Guide
●      Seeking grassroots democracy intern
●      Urge Sen. Klobuchar and Sen. Smith to co-sponsor #WeThePeopleAmendment in the Senate
●      Resources for educators: Help students understand the current Constitutional crisis
●      We the People bill (SF2038 / HF2701) at the Minnesota Legislature  
○      Join Legislation Action Team
●      Democracy in Action: Let’s be heard
○      HJR48 (We the People Amendment bill) gains traction: 66 co-sponsors
○      Companion bill needed in US Senate
●      Help expand our base
○      Make it known - Democracy is a human right
●      Local Affiliate Meetings
○      Minneapolis Area
○      Lakes Area (North Central)
○      Saint Paul Area
○      Duluth Area
○      SE MN (Rochester & Winona) Area
●      Adopt the Move to Amend Resolution - Become an endorsing organization
               ●      Minnesota organizations for ending corporate personhood and money as speech, formerly called Endorsing organizations

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HD30A and HD60A Special Elections Voter Guide

There were no respondents from HD30A candidates.

All respondents from HD60A answered YES to these two questions:

Q1.  I support amending the U.S. Constitution to make clear that corporations and other artificial entities do not have Constitutional rights and that money is not speech and campaign spending should be limited through regulation.

Q2.  I will use my office to support the Movement to Amend the Constitution by passing resolutions, proposing legislation, and publicly speaking out about the need for this Amendment.

Individual responses to the open ended question are below:

Marty Super, candidate for HD 60A : 

How will you use your public office to end corporate constitutional rights and big money in politics?

“I will sign on to any bills that end corporate personhood.”


 Sydney Jordan, candidate for HD 60A

How will you use your public office to end corporate constitutional rights and big money in politics?

“I support reforms to enhance the power of small donors and limit the reach of monied interests. Although reforms must be tailored to Minnesota, there are promising models for such changes, including the small-donor campaign financing system currently utilized in New York. This approach matches small contributions 6-to-1 with public financing. Combined with tight donation caps, this system can eliminate the disproportionate influence of wealthy interests in elections, incentivize candidates to seek many small donors instead of a few large donors, and enable candidates to run a campaign on the support of working people. There are also a number of more simple changes, that I support being made to the state campaign finance system that would reduce the influence of the wealthy – such as, tightening reporting requirements for issue advertising that does not contain express candidate advocacy. 

I also support Move to Amend's aim to amend the U.S. Constitution to make clear that corporations and artificial entities do not have Constitutional rights.”


 Susan Whitaker, candidate for HD 60A

How will you use your public office to end corporate constitutional rights and big money in politics?

“While in office, I will support campaign finance reform to foster fairness within the election process. I will not let corporate money influence my decisions and I'll call attention to corporate interference in politics.”


Piyali Dalal, candidate for HD 60A

How will you use your public office to end corporate constitutional rights and big money in politics?

“Public office is about caring about people and protecting their rights. When I think about corporations, the motivation is to maximize profits (often at any cost). I believe that the government and schools and neighbors need to value people and their basic rights. 

Reducing big money in politics is a complicated issue because many of our lawmakers are funded by big money. This is where the power of grassroots organizing will lead to making change around big money in politics.”


Jessica Intermill, candidate for HD 60A

How will you use your office to end corporate constitutional rights and big money in politics? 

“I will use the House 60A seat to emphasize that money is not speech, and that pretending that it is and that corporations are people is undemocratic because that legal fiction prioritizes profits over people. To assist this movement, I will draw on my legal training and strategic background to encourage amendment through Congress and state ratification instead of through a constitutional convention to control the amendment’s language and not open the Constitution to other amendments. Similarly, I can draw on that training to explain why I believe that state and federal regulation may be appropriate to ensure that the Amendment does not unintentionally endanger the constitutional rights of individuals. For example, if nonprofit corporations like those who support Move to Amend are raided by law enforcement, but corporations do not have 4th Amendment search and seizure protections, overzealous investigators may try to seize individuals' information and data held by the corporation. But local regulation, not constitutional protections, are most appropriate to ensure that these protections work to benefit individuals, not organizations. Fundamentally, our Constitution is for the people, not for organizations, and it is we the people who possess the power to protect our political power and overcome the democratic usurpation of the Citizens United decision.”

 

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Seeking grassroots democracy intern

To develop social media, multigenerational outreach, political and issue analysis articles, direct action, fundraising appeal and more - in support of the movement to grow democracy and pass the We the People Amendment.

This position is for someone located in Minnesota to work with the Minnesota affiliates.

Email barbara [at] movetoamend.org for more information.

 

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Urge Sen. Klobuchar and Sen. Smith to co-sponsor 

#WeThePeopleAmendment in the Senate

Big news! Sen. Ed Markey (D-MA) will introduce the #WeThePeopleAmendment in the Senate, but needs a coalition of at least five other senators to join him by co-sponsoring. You can help by calling Sen. Amy Klobuchar and Sen. Tina Smith as soon as possible to urge them to become one of the five co-sponsors. Passing the amendment will clarify that well-funded organizations do not have constitutional rights and help get big money out of politics.

ACTION: Today - Take five minutes to call the offices of Sen. Klobuchar and Sen. Smith

1. Call Senator Klobuchar's office at 202-224-3244
--> Tell them that you want to see Senator Klobuchar work with Senator Markey and Move to Amend to introduce a companion bill to HJR 48 (We the People Amendment) in the Senate. 
 
2. Call Senator Tina Smith's office at 202-224-5641
--> Tell them that you want to see Senator Smith work with Senator Markey and Move to Amend to introduce a companion bill to HJR 48 (We the People Amendment) in the Senate. 

It won’t take much time, and your effort will help them understand how much the issue means to Minnesotans. Thanks for helping, and please forward to folks who may be willing to call as well.

 

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Resources for educators

Help students understand the current Constitutional crisis

ACTION 1:  Attention educators!  if you want to learn more or want specific information, email minnesota [at] movetoamend.org .

The current Constitutional crisis provides a great opportunity for teachers to prompt student discussions about the balance of power intended by the country’s founders.

While it might make sense to promote the Move to Amend Constitution Day curriculum closer to the very day, on Sept. 17, educators and others may find value in tapping the free resources right now, while the power struggle in Washington dominates the news. All sides claim the Constitution justifies their positions, so what are people to believe? How much of the stand-off is actually grounded in the need to appease generous campaign donors?

The MTA’s Constitution Day resources includes activities, such as Rights and Privileges Timeline Exercise, and discussion questions - to help learners better understand the current struggle among the three branches of government.

 

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We the People bills (SF2038 / HF2701) at the Minnesota Legislature 

ACTION:  Email minnesota [at] movetoamend.org to join the the Minnesota Move to Amend State Network Legislation Action Team.

 

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Democracy in action:  Let’s be heard

HJR48 (We the People Amendment bill) gains traction: now 66 co-sponsors

ACTION:  Thank Representatives McCollum, Omar, Craig and Phillips.  Ask Rep Stauber, Peterson, Emmer, Hagedorn to become cosponsors of HJR48.

 

Companion bill needed in US Senate

ACTION:  Ask Senators Smith and Klobuchar to co-sponsor in the US Senate a companion bill to HJR48 (House Joint Resolution 48).

 

Click for links to their contact information.   

★   Message to Representative McCollum:  Hello, I’m ____, one of your constituents and am so pleased that you have again co-sponsored the We the People Amendment bill (HJR48).   I’m pleased you are the first co-sponsor named.  Thank you!

★   Message to Representatives Omar, Craig, Phillips:  Hello, I’m ____, one of your constituents. I learned that you have become a co-sponsor of HJR48, the We the People Amendment bill.  Thank so much.

★   Message to Representatives Petersen, Hagedorn, Emmer and Stauber:  Hello, I’m ____, one of your constituents.  I am concerned about the influence that outside and undisclosed money has on our elections.  I am concerned that big corporations and unions have more influence through their money than human beings do through their voices.  Therefore I support the We the People Amendment bill.  Please co-sponsor HJR48.

   ★   Message to Senators Smith and Klobuchar:  Hello, I’m ____, one of your constituents.  I am concerned about the influence that outside and undisclosed money has on our elections.  I am concerned that big corporations and unions have more influence through their money than human beings do through their voices.  Therefore I support HJR48 (We the People Amendment bill).  Please become a cosponsor in the US Senate of the companion bill.

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Help expand the base  

Make it known - Democracy is a human right

“We can have democracy in this country, or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both.” Louis D. Brandeis, former Supreme Court Justice.

Any movement starts with people voicing their concern, making a commitment and joining other similarly concerned neighbors.

We have Move to Amenders in every House and Senate District in Minnesota which demonstrates the widespread concern people have about our democracy. You can help us double the number by asking people in your community to sign the petition.

There are three ways people can sign the petition that says: 

We, the People of the United States of America, reject the U.S. Supreme Court’s Citizens United ruling and other related cases, and move to amend our Constitution to firmly establish that money is not speech, and that human beings, not corporations, are persons entitled to constitutional rights.

ACTION:  

1)   Text AMEND to 38470 or
2)   Sign the petition online at movetoamend.org or
3)   Print this form and get four people to sign the petition. 

You can help gather signatures in support of the petition statement.  It is the best way to educate the public. Community festivals, political rallies, farmers' markets, grocery stores, film screenings, picnics of local organizations, and other local events can provide good opportunities for outreach. 

To learn more about Move to Amend go to https://movetoamend.org

For help and more information about the efforts in Minnesota, please email Barbara at minnesota [at] movetoamend.org

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Local affiliate events

ACTION:  Attend an affiliate event.  Receive affiliate Facebook posts.

MINNEAPOLIS AREA:  Help make democracy an issue.

DATE:  January 9, 2020 (2nd Thursday each month) 
TIME:  7-8:30 p.m.
PLACE:  Grace-Trinity Community Church (in Library)
ADDRESS: 1430 West 28th Street, Minneapolis  MN 55408

The church is located one-half block west of the corner of Hennepin Avenue South and West 28th Street. FREE parking is across the street from the church on the west side of the parking lot.  

Contact: Debbie at minneapolis [at] movetoamend.org

●      Facebook group - Minneapolis Area Move to Amend:  https://www.facebook.com/groups/187282821402746/?ref=bookmarks

 

LAKES AREA: 

DATE: January 21, 2020 (3rd Tuesday each month)
TIME: 5 p.m. social time; 6 p.m. meeting
PLACE: Sage on Laurel
ADDRESS: 606 Laurel St, Brainerd, MN 56401

Contact: Roger at brainerd [at] movetoamend.org

●      Facebook group  - Lakes Area Move to Amend:  https://www.facebook.com/groups/712167322316204/

 

 

SAINT PAUL AREA:  

Imagining Real Democracy - Discussion series

DATE:  January 27, 2020(normally 4th Monday)
TIME:  6-6:15 p.m. social time;  6:15-8 p.m. program and discussion
PLACE: West 7th Mississippi Market
ADDRESS: 1500 7th St W, St Paul, MN  55102
 
Why Genuine progress indicator (GPI) is better than GDP (gross domestic product)
 
●      During this year’s slog toward Election Day, you may want to prepare yourself for discussions about the economy and how policy affects many aspects of life in the U.S. that you value.
 
●      Economist and 2019 gubernatorial candidate Ken Pentel will lead a discussion about Genuine Progress Indicator (GPI), a more informative measure of the economy than the quarterly reports of Gross Domestic Product (GDP), often cited by lawmakers, political candidates, and pundits.
 
●      Developed after the Great Depression as a way to gauge the country’s economic recovery, GDP reports the sum of all economic transactions in the country, but fails to report the impact of non-market factors.
 
●      Alternatively, the 42 factors that comprise GPI report the value of household and volunteer work, plus “ecosystem life support services” while also measuring “crime, pollution, sickness, and environmental degradation as costs not gains to the economy.”

Contact: Sarah at saintpaul [at] movetoamend.org

Pre-register at saintpaul [at] movetoamend.org to receive readings in advance of the discussion.  Type “Imagining Democracy” in the subject line. This is not necessary but will be helpful for your participation.

Another way to become informed:  Ask to join the Facebook group - St Paul Area Move to Amend: https://www.facebook.com/groups/St.PaulAreaMoveToAmend/

     

DULUTH AREA:  Contact Barbara at duluth [at] movetoamend.org

●      Facebook group - Duluth Area Move to Amend:  https://www.facebook.com/groups/DuluthAreaMTA/

 

SE MN (Rochester and Winona) Area:  Contact Barbara at minnesota [at] movetoamend.org

●      Facebook Group - SE MN (Rochester and Winona) Move to Amend: https://www.facebook.com/groups/RochesterAreaMTA/

 

NEW!!!

ST CLOUD AREA:  We are exploring interest in starting an affiliate in central Minnesota.  A screening of Dark Money will be the first educational session.  If you are interested please let Jeff and Darold know at minnestoa [at] movetoamend.org   Type “St Cloud Area” in the subject field.

 

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Adopt the Move to Amend Resolution - Become an endorsing organization

ACTION:  Find the resolution and instructions here.

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Minnesota organizations for ending corporate 
personhood and money as speech

KEY

** Endorsement secured by Minnesota American Promise. All others secured by MN Move to Amend.
*** Endorsement secured by Minnesota Citizens for Clean Elections

Cities: City of Duluth - City of Lauderdale*** - City of Minneapolis - City of New Brighton***  - City of St. Paul

Counties (Board of Commissioners): Sherburne County**

Peace:  Anti-War Committee  -  Friends for a NonViolent World (FNVW)  -  GlobalSolutionsMN.org  -  Grandmothers for Peace – Twin Cities  -  Minnesota Alliance of Peacemakers  -  Twin Cities Peace Campaign -  Veterans for Peace Chapter 27  -  Women Against Military Madness

Democracy:  Ecology Democracy Network  -  Minnesota Citizens for Clean Elections

Environment:  The Climate Crisis Coalition of the Twin Cities (3CTC)  -  Minnesota Pachamama Community   MN 350  - Organic Consumer Association  -  Community Power

Faith Communities:  Macalester Plymouth United Church  -  Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Duluth  -  Oak Grove Presbyterian Church  -  St. Chrhttps://www.afge.org/districts/district-8/istopher’s Episcopal Church  -  The Presbytery of the Twin Cities Area  -   Holy Trinity Episcopal Church

Labor:  American Federation of Government Employees 8th District (AFGE)  -   MN AFL-CIO  & MN AFL-CIO Retiree Council  -  MN Nurses Assn - National Farmers Union  -  Saint Paul Regional Labor Federation AFL-CIO  - SEIU Minnesota State Council

Health:  Health Care for All Minnesota  -   MN Citizens Federation NE

Legal/Human Rights:  National Lawyers Guild of Minnesota  -  Winona Human Rights Commission  -  NAACP, Duluth, MN Branch  -  Clayton, Jackson, McGhie Memorial, Inc. - Richfield Social Justice Community

Business:  Progpen Consulting, Inc

Other:  Edina Indivisible Minnesota  - Humanists of Minnesota  -  Indivisible I (International) Falls  -  Minnesota chapter of the Progressive Independent Party  - N.E. Metro Progressives  -  Occupy Saint Paul

 

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