The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release
Contact: Mike Hersh, PDA Communications Director,,Alan Minksy, PDA Executive Director:,

Progressives Push Lame Duck Congress to Fly


Progressive Democrats of America (PDA) and allies will hold vigils at congressional offices around the country on Wednesday, November 17, to press for action out of a lame duck Congress.

"In a healthy democracy, this would be a time of reduced public influence," said Tim Carpenter, national director of PDA. "In our pay-to-play politics, this may be a time of relative opportunity. The Democratic Caucus still runs both houses, and its more progressive members have whatever influence comes with having won elections, while half the Blue Dogs are on their way to the pound. If there's a time to pass legislation it's now."

Brown Bag Vigils are scheduled at congressional district offices; details here.

The vigils will demand commitments to not renege on the trust that is our Social Security savings. Thus far 148 congress members have put their names to it.

Additional demands are for support and passage of:

--HR 4812, the Local Jobs for America Act, a bill that funds local governments and nonprofit agencies to save and create jobs providing local services for two years.

--HR 1826, the Fair Elections Now Act, which would go a long way toward making citizens' votes count more in relation to the dominance of corporate dollars.

-- HR 1337, America's Energy Security Trust Fund Act of 2009, which would impose an excise tax on any taxable carbon substance sold by a manufacturer, producer, or importer. The tax would fund America's Energy Security Trust Fund, which will provide individual taxpayers with carbon tax rebates. A small portion would finance research in clean energy technology.

Progressive Democrats of America was founded in 2004 to transform the Democratic Party and our country. We seek to build a party and government controlled by citizens, not corporate elites--with policies that serve the broad public interest, not just private interests. PDA is a grassroots PAC operating inside the Democratic Party, and outside in movements for peace and justice. Our inside/outside strategy is guided by the belief that a lasting majority will require a revitalized Democratic Party built on firm progressive principles.

For over two decades, the party declined as its leadership listened more to the voices of corporations than those of Americans. PDA strives to rebuild the Democratic Party from the bottom up--from every congressional district to statewide party structures to the corridors of power in Washington, where we work arm in arm with the Congressional Progressive Caucus. In just six years, PDA and its allies have shaken up the political status quo--on the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, Medicare for all, voter rights, accountability, and economic and environmental justice.

Progressive Democrats of America was founded in 2004 to transform the Democratic Party and U.S. politics by working inside and outside of the party by working to elect empowered progressives and by building the progressive movement in solidarity with with peace, justice, civil rights, environmental, and other reform efforts. For more information about PDA, please see