Organizing Notes

Bruce Gagnon is coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space. He offers his own reflections on organizing and the state of America's declining empire....

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Location: Bath, Maine, United States

With a new administration in Washington it will be a challenge to get the 'liberals' to hold Biden-Harris to the few 'progressive promises' they made during their campaign. Biden is bringing back many of Bush & Obama's neo-cons to head his foreign policy. I'll be on this case without hesitation.

Sunday, March 09, 2008

MAINERS FOR CYNTHIA MCKINNEY FORMED


We hosted a meeting at our house today where we formed a committee to support Cynthia McKinney's run for president. I will be volunteering in this effort in my free time. Below are the meeting minutes I sent around after the meeting.

A meeting was held on March 9 to form a committee called Mainers for Cynthia McKinney to support the former Georgia Congresswoman's run for president of the U.S. as the Green Party nominee.

Nine people met at the Addams-Melman House in Bath (about a dozen more had sent their interest and best wishes and were not able to come). The meeting was facilitated by Bruce Gagnon.

Cynthia McKinney is now in the process of campaigning to win the Green Party nomination. In Maine many county-wide caucus events have been held with more scheduled this month. So far McKinney is leading in Maine with about 60% of the vote. Nationally McKinney is doing well as Green caucus events are still underway. The Maine Green Independent Party (MGIP) convention will be held in May (either the 10th or the 18th) to formalize Maine's choice. The national Green Party convention will be in Chicago July 10-13 where the party nominee will be ultimately chosen. The national party nominee will automatically be on the Maine election ballot in November, 2008.

During the meeting a brainstorming session was held to come up with key priorities for our committee to begin working on. Some items will be acted on immediately and others later on.

They include:

* Local meetings (we encourage town/county Cynthia McKinney support groups to form that would then feed into the statewide campaign committee.
* News release to announce the formation of Mainers for Cynthia McKinney will be sent out following the MGIP final tabulation and public release of winner of Maine Green presidential caucus.
* Organize a Maine speaking tour for Cynthia (end of April was suggested date). (Jacqui Devaneau and Jon Olsen)
* Identify artists around the state who would like to help support Cynthia. (Bruce)
* Develop a media plan for when Cynthia comes to Maine and beyond.
* Develop a Mainers for Cynthia McKinney brochure by April 13 to hand out at progressive events around the state. (Bill Grubb & Jon)
* Develop creative advertising plans.
* Find someone to develop a web site for Mainers for Cynthia McKinney. (Bruce)
* Investigate interest at colleges and universities for Cynthia to speak.
* Identify local Maine issues that Cynthia should address when she comes to Maine (cuts in social spending in Augusta, etc).
* Identify well known people nationally who are supporting Cynthia and invite them to speak in Maine.....like Hip hop artist Head Roc. (Anna Trevorrow)
* Get banner made with Mainers for Cynthia McKinney on it.
* Encourage people to begin writing local letters to editor now that introduce Cynthia's campaign to the public.


In order to qualify for federal campaign matching funds Cynthia must get at least $5,000 in donations from 20 states. Many states are well on their way to reaching this goal. Maine so far has donated about $1,000 to Cynthia's campaign. People are urged to make a donation ASAP and can do so via Cynthia's web site. Help us get Cynthia to that $5,000 figure! We will organize additional campaign fundraising events in the future.

The MGIP will be allotted 44 delegates to the national convention in July. Each delegate can carry one proxy with them so we need at least 22 Greens to attend the convention in July to ensure Cynthia gets the nomination. We are presently looking for Maine Greens to go to the convention and also raising funds to help cover convention expenses. If you are interested in either of these please contact Jacqui Devaneau at 934-1911 or jacquio50@yahoo.com

Jacqui has contacted the McKinney campaign headquarters and offered to serve as Maine volunteer coordinator as the national office is contacted by people in Maine. We will also put Jacqui's phone and email address on the brochure being created as the point of contact.

Several key events are happening in coming months that are relevant to our efforts to promote Cynthia. They are:

* April 13 showing of Cynthia's film American Blackout in Portland at the Meg Perry Center (644 Congress). This is a fundraiser for Chicago Green convention trip.

*May 2 showing of American Blackout at Addams-Melman House in Bath (212 Centre St.) Potluck supper and fundraiser for Chicago Green convention trip. Begins at 6:30pm.

Next meeting of the Mainers for Cynthia McKinney will be held on Sunday, March 30 at the Addams-Melman House (AMH) in Bath from noon to 2:30 pm. Following that meeting is the regular monthly pot luck supper at the AMH from 3-5 pm to which all are also invited.

The meeting ended with a reminder that Cynthia McKinney provides the progressive community with a unique opportunity to unite people of color and white activists who are unhappy with the current mainstream corporate political parties. We need a strong voice in the national elections to ensure that our opposition to the Iraq occupation, our demands for social justice, and more remain in front of the nation.

Please feel free to join with us and to offer us any advice or skills you may have.

Thanks.

Bruce K. Gagnon
Bath
(207) 443-9502
globalnet@mindspring.com

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