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Thanks Senator Kerrey

Hopefully many of you reading this read the email I sent you last week about the progress the NDP has made the last three months.

From an exciting Morrison-Exon Dinner, to Camp Connealy, to the "93 County Strategy", the NDP is hard at work rebuilding the Party from the bottom-up.

In case you didn't get the email, our good friend Senator Bob Kerrey had a few comments about the NDP's efforts:

But what really amazes me is that you and I can join thousands more across the state and beyond, to build this new community from the ground up. Just the discussions I follow on the blog area of the site show the type of commitment and action it's going to take to make our Party stronger.

That commitment is matched at the highest levels of our state Party. These NDP staff members and elected leaders work around the clock planning training sessions and events where neighbors connect with one another to take control of their community. That's exactly how we need to strengthen the NDP--from the bottom up.

Senator Kerrey truly hit the nail on the head when he said:

For every volunteer that's been trained, we need ten more. For every person that can afford to travel to a rally 300 miles away, we need to be able to bus in twenty more. And, come election time, we need the network of 93 counties--not just a handful--to make our message a victory in the polls.

The "93 County Strategy" is your plan and we're thankful that Senator Kerrey believes in it.

However, the online community needs to hear from you. Be sure to add your thoughts about the resources needed to enact the "93 County Strategy" in your county.

Whether that's a booth at your county fair, or maybe literature to go door-to-door with, the NDP needs to know what you need to enact this plan on a very realistic level.

Your feedback is crucial, so please don't hesitate to share your thoughts and ideas as we continue to implement your "93 County Strategy".

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Weekend Open Thread

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Jim Esch for Congress

An exciting development in Omaha. Stay tuned to find ways to help Jim in his quest to take back NE-2!

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Funny Friday

For those of us who've written speeches for politicians, this is a must see. Regardless, it's worth your three minutes -- I promise. Play

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From the Road: Antelope County

Carmyn and I stopped by to talk with the Antelope County Democrats about the 93 County Strategy at their monthly meeting last night in Neligh.

Ian Russell discusses the 93 County Strategy with the Antelope County Democrats.

Barb Ross, the county chair, is working with a dedicated group of folks to rebuild the Democratic Party in this rural area. They've started meeting monthly to share ideas and find candidates for local offices.

We talked about where they can find great candidates for local offices: economic development boards, the Chamber of Commerce, community leaders, etc. Since a good name goes along way in a rural area like Antelope County, it's important to find potential Democratic candidates who are already opinion leaders in small town politics. Barb brought up the fact that many candidates don't actually campaign for local offices, meaning that we can win them by knocking doors and turning out voters.

Thanks to the hard work of the resurgent Antelope County Democrats, they'll be new local Democratic elected officials in 2006 and more votes for our statewide candidates.

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Open Thread

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The Sick Reality of Health Care and Race

For those people who claim we've overcome the racial divide in this nation, I encourage them to read the follwing:

The New England Journal of Medicine released the results of three studies indicating we have a long way to go in regards to access to health care, and in fact, it seems to be getting worse.

In the last decade, black Medicare recipients were less likely to get nine kinds of potentially life-saving surgery than whites, even when the overall medical needs were the same.

In one study, despite much higher rates of cardiovascular disease, 63% of black men enrolled in Medicare were less likely than their white counterparts to have heart bypass surgery. Black women were 30% less likely.

Blacks of both sexes were less likely than whites to have angiograms to detect blocked blood vessels -- in addition to procedures opening those blocked vessels.

Seems to me we have a long way to go. Remember, if you vote Democrat enough you'll never have to pay another medical bill as long as you live!

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From the Road: Nance and Dodge Counties

This week has been a busy one for the field department -- and it's not over yet!

We have spent time traveling to Nance, Dodge, Adams, Wayne, and Cuming Counties meeting with county party activists, chairs, and interested community members.

Kerry, the Nance County Chair spoke of ways her community is getting involved and the potential for a barbeque in the near future. We also heard from Annette Dubas, our candidate for Legislature in 34. She is a wonderful person -- I certainly encourage you to attend her kickoff on September 5th at the Loup River Inn in Nance County.

The Dodge County meeting last night was highlighted with a special visit from Steve Achelpohl, the Chair of the Nebraska Democratic Party. He spoke to the group in part about the new national interest in Nebraska from organizations like the DNC. He talked about issues of importance to the people of Nebraska like finding quality and affordable health care for our children, outsourcing, and agriculture.

Today we are off to Antelope, Merrick and Polk Counties. Stay tuned!

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Competing Across the State

In case you weren't able to see last week's front-page Lincoln Journal Star story about the "93 County Strategy," check out some of the excerpts:

"This will be a concerted effort to build a structure in all 93 counties (and) compete in areas that now may be considered hostile," said Barry Rubin, the Nebraska Democratic Party's executive director.


"The party plans to create a permanent ‘political force that still is operating the morning after the election,' said Ian Russell, who will travel the state as field director, building upon what the party calls its ‘Democratic community' in every county."


"In devising its plan, the party decided its first obligation was just to ‘show up' in counties it had previously abandoned or simply forfeited to Republicans…No longer, it decided, would Democrats in some communities be left alone on an island…What the Nebraska party is doing is similar to the effort now under way nationally, Rubin said."

But what the Lincoln Journal Star article failed to mention was that only you can make this strategy and Party work.

Help grow the NDP community by sending out an email about the "93 County Strategy" to your friends, family, co-workers, and classmates:

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From the Road: Hastings

I stopped by the Hastings Democratic Meetup to talk with them about the 93 County Strategy and get feedback on what we can do to help them build the party.

Hastings is an important community in central Nebraska. With four city council seats and several county offices up in 2006, it's important that we begin to build a strong local party that can help elect Democrats to these positions. Also, our statewide candidates will need to do well in this city, since it's one of the population centers in the area.

The Meetup folks will be working hard over the next few weeks to build up the Democratic community in Hastings: they're meeting in two weeks to address and handwrite postcards to other Democrats in Hastings, inviting them to the next Meetup, and they'll be meeting monthly to strategize on implementing the 93 County Strategy in their community.

The Hastings Meetup takes place on the third Tuesday of every month at Blue Moon Coffee on 2nd Street.

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