NTD NEWS   February 8, 2017
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Since last year's election, I imagine a lot of you have had more than a few conversations about what led to Donald Trump's victory. Don't worry, I'm not going to get into one more rehash of the Democratic Party's missteps and the mysterious meddling of outsiders that may never be revealed.
     But there is one aspect of not only the Trump "upset" but also a number of earlier setbacks for Democrats that I want to get into a bit today. I was reminded of it by something that's going on right now in our township. What's ironic is that the situation is based on a philosophy articulated by an old-guard Democrat, Tip O'Neill. He said, "All politics is local." And it's true. The rise of the Tea Party in the 2010 mid-term elections and their subsequent takeover of much of the Congress was a harsh example of that.
     How did the Tea Party manage to seemingly appear out of nowhere with campaign-ready candidates? A lot of them had already been groomed as local office holders. When I say "local" I'm talking really local. School boards, library boards, park boards, zoning boards. And what's interesting is that in many locales those local elections are run as a non-partisan. It's not until one of those non-partisan board members runs in a partisan election for an office such as state legislator that they have to wear a party label. Then they can bring the public speaking and campaigning skills they honed in their earlier public role, along with the political philosophies they've always held, and they hit the ground running.
     Of course as most of you know, the NTDO has been an independent grassroots operation since it began over 50 years ago, practicing our political activism as locally as was allowed. Other nearby townships actually do have party declarations on some of their local ballots. But not New Trier. So if one of our members runs for a local board or decides to campaign for a board candidate, they always do it as a private citizen. The same can be said for becoming publicly involved in other local issues involving institutions such as parks or schools.
     Right now, there are township and local community elections coming up on April 4 with, in some cases, competing slates of candidates. Since these local elections are non-partisan. I certainly won't be expressing any opinions in the NTD News on the slates or individual candidates. But because participation in every election, at every level of government, is important for the strength of our democracy, the NTDO wants every eligible voter to become familiar with each candidate's position, then show up on election-day to vote. - We are not and never will be into voter suppression.
     At this point in time, I have managed to gather a little information about the competing slates for New Trier Township offices. One slate is named the New Trier Economy Party and was slated by the New Trier Citizens League caucus. The party has a very basic website and a Facebook page where you can learn a bit about the candidates and their positions. The Glencoe News reported Peter Tyor is the Economy Party's Chairperson.
     The other slate is named the New Trier Coalition. The only website I could find was the Illinois Sunshine website where they state their purpose is "To elect Free Market candidates." Their Chairperson is Joan McCarthy-Lasonde. You may remember her as the person who ran for Congress in the 9thDistrict against Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky and according to her quote in the Tribune, she was one of the original members of the "Policy Circle" in Wilmette. One of the Circle's founders is Mrs. Sylvie Legere (Todd) Ricketts. (The Policy Circle's website has much more background as well as its stated philosophy inspired in part by economist Milton Friedman.)
     I urge everyone reading this newsletter to click on links provided for both slates and then make up your own mind on who you plan to support. To paraphrase Thomas Jefferson: "An informed electorate is the cornerstone of a democracy."
     As I said earlier, elections at the most local level are the training grounds for future candidates for higher office. And, in the meantime those officeholders do have a day to day impact on the direction taken by each local society. The past has proven how these elections can lead to movements that impact the entire nation. We should never ignore them - especially when low voter turnout can be such a big factor.
     Finally, speaking of local directions taken, there is a situation concerning New Trier High School that is being debated right now. It concerns a planned All-School Seminar Day titled "Understanding Today's Struggle for Racial Civil Rights." The planned workshops and speakers have caused some members of the New Trier community to demand the Seminars be revamped and if not modified, cancelled completely. They have organized under the name "Parents of New Trier."
     Once again, this is a non-partisan issue and the NTDO and the NTD News takes no position in this controversy -- but we do believe that you should be informed. So, here is a link to the New Trier High School website for this proposed event. And here is a link to the "Parents of New Trier" site. I urge you to dig into each website. If you agree with the position taken by "Parents" site, they offer several ways you can take action. If you agree with the concept and scheduled workshops presented on the New Trier site, you can tell the School Board of your support by clicking here.  -- The politics may be local but the issues are universal.

Nels Howard
                                                                       NTDO member since 1973

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.

This Friday evening, Feb. 10 at 7:30pm on WTTW's The Interview Show the featured guest will be our State Senator Daniel Biss.
If you are a regular viewer of WTTW's Friday night lineup you're already familiar with The Interview Show. Every Friday at 7:30 pm Mark Bazer interviews an interesting guest from his "talk show desk" at Chicago's Hideout music venue (and bar). His eclectic list of past guests has included Renee Fleming, David Duchovney, Rick Bayless, David Axelrod, Hannibal Burress and sportscaster Julie DiCaro. You can be sure that his discussion with Senator Biss will include plenty of information about the present state of Illinois government. - It's a show you shouldn't miss.

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:

Tomorrow night, Feb. 9 at 6:30 pm at the Illinois Holocaust Museum & Education Center in Skokie -- The Syrian Crisis: Impact and Response, Thursday, Feb. 9 at 6:30 PM

The Syrian refugee situation is an international tragedy that needs to be more clearly understood by all of us.

Tomorrow night, Thursday, Feb. 9 in Deerfield -
the PFLAG February Meeting
When: Thursday, February 9, at 7:15pm
Where: BJBE Synagogue, 1201 Lake Cook Rd., Deerfield
Monthly meeting of Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays
(PFLAG).  This month's speakers are Theresa Volpe and her wife, Mercedes Santos.  Theresa is a children's book author, mother of three, and active in numerous organizations serving the LGBTQ community.  Theresa and Mercedes testified before the Illinois Senate in support of the Illinois Marriage Equality Bill and were plaintiffs in the Lambda Legal lawsuit against the State of Illinois. PFLAG meets at 7:15pm the second Thursday of each month at BJBE Synagogue, Deerfield. -- For additional information, visit the PFLAG website here or email pflagdeerfield@gmail.com

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, 

If you are not already an NTDO member, and enjoy our Newsletter, we hope you consider joining us as a dues-paying member. NTDO is a not-for-profit political action organization. We depend on our membership dues to support our Democratic causes and candidates.

There are two options for dues payments: by check or credit card.


By Check: Make check payable to NTDO and mail to our office:


800 Oak St., Suite 112

Winnetka, IL 60093


By Credit Card: visit our website by clicking  here 

Click on the "Get Involved" tab

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.