NTD NEWS   February 15, 2017
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  Commentary     --   Events     --   Your Legislators 

This week's NTD News commentary will be brief because the writer is out of town all week, involved in other worthy pursuits.  Nels Howard

     As I said last Wednesday, the rise of the Tea Party in the 2010 mid-term elections and their subsequent takeover of much of Congress was a harsh example of the importance of mid-term and off-year elections and the power of local politics.  A few days after those comments, a friendly competitor of the NTD News, The Sunday New York Times, reinforced that thought:     

     "Progressives cannot afford to forget what's happening in our own backyards,"  said Nick Rathod, executive director of State Innovation Exchange, a Colorago-based liberal group focused on state legislatures.  "some of it is even more egregious than what is currently happening in Washington, D.C."

     "In several states that the party has controlled for a longer span, Republican governors have also announced aggressive plans to overhaul the size and function of government, including a Wisconsin welfare-overhaul proposal, backed by Gov. Scott Walker, and a large program of tax cuts in Florida, championed by Gov. Rick Scott.  Both men were first elected in 2010."

     As we have witnessed since the Roberts/Scalia Supreme Court's "Citizens United" decision, aggressive corporate lobbies and richly-funded ideological PAC's now have disproportionate political power.  And they have learned to use their virtually unfettered financial resources to radically affect public policy -- in some parts of our country, even at the most local levels of government.

     Right here in New Trier Township, the local elections for a variety of public boards are coming up on April 4.  A number of positions on the ballot have competing candidates.  In the past, turnout for these seemingly "less important" elections have been shamefully low.  At times, winners have been decided by a handful of votes.  This is precisely how many Tea Partiers were able to get their start.

      I'm not saying that's the situation here in New Trier.  What I am saying is that in every election, the time to pay attention to the candidates, who they are, what they really stand for is before the election is held.  Do your research.  Ask questions.  Then show up on Election Day to vote.  The stakes are always higher than we think.
Nels Howard
NTDO member since 1973

P.S Here's the link to the full New York Times article: 


The phone banking at the NTD office is still going on.
#1. This is the first big action the NTDO is joining --  

Your volunteer work will have an impact!:

Sign up now for the Protect the ACA (Obama Care) Phone Bank at the NTD Office in Winnetka.  
Every Monday, Wednesday, & Saturday from now through 2/18 from 3pm to 7pm -- At the NTD office, 800 Oak St Winnetka
You will be contacting constituents in Congressman Peter Roskam's district, urging them to urge him to support vital health care services for everyone. You will need to bring a cell phone and a laptop to participate in the phone banks. Even if you only have an hour two to spare, your help is important. To sign up, click here. (Or if you find time to help at the last minute, just come to the NTD office.)
And if you absolutely, positively have no time on any scheduled date to help with the "Protect the ACA" Phone Bank, here's a very quick activity:
#2. Spend 5 minutes, make 5 calls. For the details click here.   
Even though our local Democratic U.S. Congresspersons most likely agree with us on most issues, they need strong constituent call numbers to underscore their positions in Congress.

And here's another list of 8 activities (including the ACA phone bank) that you can choose from right now...

"Join the Resistance" with a choice of activities  suggested by Congresswoman Schakowsky and her staff. They are all valuable. 
Click here.

State Rep. Laura Fine wants to hear from you about HB40, the bill to protect a woman's right to choose in Illinois.

Rep. Fine has said: She wants constituents to contact her by phone or email to express concerns about issues. -- Even if you feel sure that Rep. Fine supports your views, the number of people contacting her on issues is factual ammunition as she argues for support of legislation.  

HB40 is a bill that was written to abolish Illinois' so-called "trigger law" that, if Roe v. Wade is overturned, abortion would become illegal in Illinois, as would several forms of birth control. Under a Trump Supreme Court this is a real possibility. 
     HB40 amends the State Employees Group Insurance Act of 1971. Removes a provision prohibiting the non-contributory portion of a program of health-benefits from including the expenses of obtaining an abortion. Amends the Illinois Public Aid Code. Removes a provision excluding abortions or induced miscarriages or premature births from the list of services provided under the State's medical assistance program. Removes language providing for the adoption of rules to prohibit a physician from providing medical assistance to anyone eligible for medical assistance benefits if the physician has been found guilty of wilfully and wantonly performing an abortion procedure upon a woman who was not pregnant at the time of the procedure. Removes other provisions concerning abortion restrictions. Amends the Problem Pregnancy Health Services and Care Act. Removes language prohibiting the Department of Human Services from making grants to nonprofit agencies and organizations that use such grants to refer or counsel for, or perform, abortions. Amends the Illinois Abortion Law of 1975. Provides that it is the intention of the Gen
eral Assembly to reasonably regulate abortion in conformance with the legal standards set forth in the decisions of the United States Supreme Court of January 22, 1973. Removes language concerning the General Assembly's declaration that the unborn child is a human being from the time of conception and is, therefore, a legal person for purposes of the unborn child's right to life. Makes other changes.

Call Laura at 847-998-1717 or for more contact information click here

February 23, 2017 in Skokie -- A town hall meeting on elections and how to protect you voting rights with Cook County clerk David Orr and Cook County commissioner Larry Suffredin
  T hursday: 6:30pm to 8:00pm
Oakton Community Center,
47 01 Oakton Street, Skokie

As voting protections have been pulled back in recent years, we've seen increased efforts to suppress voting across the United States. Today, it is critically important that every citizen understands their voting rights. This is not just pertinent to new American citizens living in our region, but to every voter just turned 18 and every new move-in too.
Make no mistake, there will be attempts to suppress votes in 2018
and they may not be limited to other parts of our country.
This town hall has been organized In Cooperation with: Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky, IL Sen. Daniel Biss , IL Sen. Ira Silverstein IL, Sen. Heather Steans, Rep. Robyn Gabel, Rep. Laura Fine, Rep. John D'Amico Rep. Kelly Cassidy and Rep. Louis Lang. It is being co- Sponsored by The League of Women Voters of:
Cook County, Winnetka, Northfield, Kenilworth, Glenview/Glencoe, Evanston

Have you visited Senator Biss' website "The Road Back" --
click on the link to his video -- then, throughout the summer follow his plan's development on the website.

Daniel explains a lot about how Illinois got where it is today and how we can begin the journey on the road back toward achieving our state's tremendous economic potential.

Other upcoming events and news items:

Sunday, Feb. 26 at the Adlai Stevenson Center in Mettawa - "The 2017 Doomsday Clock: Why the Time Matters."

: Sunday, February 26, 2017 from 2:00 - 4:00pm
Where: Adlai Stevenson Center on Democracy,
24200 St. Mary's Rd.,  Mettawa (Libertyville), IL
Come hear a discussion of the Doomsday Clock featuring Rachel Bronson, Executive Director and Publisher of the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists.  Dr. Bronson received her doctorate from Columbia University.  Her writing has appeared in numerous publications including Foreign Policy, Foreign Affairs, The New York Times, The Washington Post, and the Chicago Tribune.
You can RSVP online.

Ready for an interesting Spring Break? From March 25 to April 1 The Nation Magazine has organized a trip to Cuba.

If you have the time and wherewithal to get away, here's a chance to get to know a neighbor we haven't spoken to in 50 years. You'll meet prominent Cuban professors, government officials, physicians, community activists, farmers, urban planners, journalists, and artists; you'll tour museums, neighborhood markets and the scenic countryside; and savor traditional Cuban food and spirits fine restaurants and organic farms. The all-inclusive cost of this weeklong tour is $5,855 per person with double occupancy ($400 single supplement) including round-trip airfare from Florida to Havana; six nights in a four-star Hotel and one evening at a private guesthouse. For more info click here. 

Start making plans now for
the Peoples Climate March on April 29 in Washington D.C.

When: Saturday, April 29, 9:00 AM -3:00 PM  
Where: Washington D.C. 
On Saturday, April 29 in our nation's capital and across the country, marchers will stand together to demand that Donald Trump act in a meaningful way to address the climate crisis and stop attacking the hard-won protections for all our communities, especially people of color, indigenous people, women, and more. Together, we can show the world that we demand climate action. To sign up for the Washington march click here. -- (More details for events across the country to follow.) 

Your Legislators:

Legislators Democratic Legislators
who represent New Trier Township in 
Washington, Springfield and Cook County 

You'll be hearing a lot from these exceptional public servants. --

And they want to be hearing a lot from you. 
     The fact is, they need to hear from you and want to hear from you in order to represent you most effectively. So, the first thing you can do is get to know who these people are. The links below to their campaign websites are a good place to start. 
Jan Schakowsky , 9th U.S. Congressional District Representative  and Chief Deputy House Democratic Whip. The new Ninth District boundaries include all of New Trier except for Glencoe. 

Brad Schneider , 10th U.S. Congressional District Representative which includes a number of precincts in Glencoe.
Daniel Biss,   State Senator for Illinois' 9th State Senate District.The Ninth District includes all of New Trier Township.
Julie MorrisonState Senator for Illinois' 29th State Senate District. The district includes New Trier's northernmost precincts.   

Robyn Gabel, IL 18th District State Representative. The 18th District includes much of New Trier up to Hazel Avenue and Dundee Road.
Laura Fine , IL 17th District State Representative.
The 17th District includes the East Glenview and West Wilmette areas of New Trier Township.

Scott Drury IL 58th District State Representative. 
The 58th District includes the northernmost precincts in Glencoe.

Larry Suffredin, Cook County 13th District Commissioner. The 13th District includes all of New Trier, Evanston and Niles Townships. 

Dear Fellow Democrats, 

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Find the link for "contribute with ActBlue"
or go directly there by clicking here. 
Still not a member of the New Trier Dems? Your participation in grassroots political action will make a difference. -- Come join us.

When you're a member of the New Trier Democratic Organization, you have an active role in affecting the political process; participating in grassroots campaigns, staying in touch with elected officials, playing a role in deciding which candidates are endorsed. You'll also gain free admission to select forums and events throughout the year.

Come be a part of New Trier's grassroots political community.    
About Us:
The New Trier Democratic Organization is made up of hundreds of grassroots volunteers dedicated to advancing progressive ideals through the political process. We welcome your participation.

Dean T. Maragos, Committeeman New Trier Township

We are located at 800 Oak Street in Winnetka, IL. Ph: 847-446-8030
Contact: newtrierdemocrats@gmail.com.

*This Internet communication paid for by the New Trier Democratic Organization and  not authorized by any federal or state candidate or campaign committee. A copy of our report filed with the State Board of Elections is available for purchase from the State Board of Elections in Springfield, Illinois.