For Immediate Release


Mike Hersh, Communications Director:

Donna Smith, Executive Director

PDA Inaugural Calendar Fills Up

Grassroots Conference, White House Shoe-In and King Day Tribute Make for Busy Three Days

WASHINGTON - Progressive Democrats of America will get a jump on inaugural festivities with three major events this weekend and Monday in the nation’s capital. In addition, PDA will deploy the Single-Payer-Health-Mobile and distribute 250,000 Healthcare NOT Warfare fliers in support of single-payer healthcare in the days leading up to the inauguration.

“It’s going to be a busy three days, but we’re going to get a lot of good work done and have some fun, too,” said PDA National Director Tim Carpenter. “This is a historic moment for the nation and for the progressive movement and it’s important that we keep fighting for the things we believe in and map out clear steps for the coming weeks and months of challenge and change.”

PDA will host its Annual Grassroots Leadership Conference on Saturday and Sunday at the University of the District of Columbia. The two-day conference will feature seminars and discussions involving PDA’s national and grassroots leadership, allied organizations and elected officials. Sessions will focus on refining the group’s goals and objectives for 2009 and giving attendees organizing tools to use in working toward those goals in their local areas.

Carpenter will be moderating two panels, on how to improve PDA in 2009 and on building the PDA community. Also featured at the conference will be Congressional Black Caucus Chair Rep. Barbara Lee, and Reps. John Conyers, Jim McGovern, Raul Grijalva and Eric Massa, along with PDA leaders and allies such as PDA board member Steve Cobble of the Institute for Policy Studies, Col. Anne Wright (ret.), Michael Lighty of the California Nurses Association, Katie Robbins of Healthcare NOW!, and many others.

On Monday, President Bush’s last day in office, PDA will join and other allies for a “Shoe Bush” rally and hurling of footwear at the White House, to call attention to the serious crimes committed by the Bush administration and demand their investigation and prosecution. The event will begin at a Peace Fair at Dupont Circle at 11 a.m. and move to the White House for the shoe-throwing.

Finally, Monday evening, PDA board members, allies, supporters and friends will gather at Busboys and Poets at 10 p.m. for a reception to honor and celebrate the legacy of peace, hope and justice on Martin Luther King Day, the eve of Barack Obama's inauguration. Special guests will include Reps. Jim McGovern and Eric Massa, author and activist Tom Hayden, CODEPINK co-founders Medea Benjamin and Jodie Evans, author and radio host Thom Hartmann, Natiin magazine Washington correspondent John Nichols and Healthcare NOT Warfare national co-chair Donna Smith. Dan Reed will perform. Tickets are $300; couples $500.

Progressive Democrats of America is one of the nation’s fastest-growing grassroots political organizations; it has active chapters in 45 states. PDA is dedicated to reviving the progressive tradition of the Democratic Party through grassroots organizing and working with elected Democrats to advance peace, justice and social, economic and environmental responsibility. More information is available at:


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Progressive Democrats of America is a grassroots PAC that works both inside the Democratic Party and outside in movements for peace and justice. Our goal: Elect a permanent, progressive majority in 2008. PDA's advisory board includes seven members of Congress and activist leaders such as Tom Hayden, Medea Benjamin, Thom Hartmann and Rev. Lennox Yearwood. More info:

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