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State Senator Donna Soucy Endorses Joyce Craig for Mayor

Craig also Announces State Representative Endorsements

MANCHESTER – This morning, Alderman Joyce Craig announced that Manchester State Senator Donna Soucy has endorsed her campaign for mayor of Manchester.

“Joyce Craig is the leader we need to get our city back on track,” said Senator Soucy.  “Having served on the School Board with Joyce, I know that she has long been a leader in Manchester and a strong advocate for better schools. As an Alderman, she has been instrumental in making our streets safer by leading the charge to hire more police officers and improving our city’s infrastructure.  I am proud to endorse Joyce Craig for mayor because I know she will be the problem-solver and strong leader that we need to move Manchester forward.”

Craig is also proud to announce the endorsements of Manchester Representatives Robert Walsh, Mary Freitas, Mary Heath, Joseph Lachance, Timothy Smith, Patricia Cornell, Robert Backus, and Jane Beaulieu.  She was also previously endorsed by Manchester State Senator Lou D’Allesandro and Alderman and State Representative Pat Long. 

“I am honored to have the support of Senator Soucy and Representatives Walsh, Freitas, Heath, Lachance, Smith, Cornell, Backus, and Beaulieu,” said Craig.  “We are the largest city in New Hampshire and our leader must have a more effective voice in Concord.  The Mayor’s failures on education, curbing the heroin epidemic and infrastructure have taken a heavy toll on our city. Time and again, Mayor Gatsas’s inability to work with others has harmed Manchester’s interests. During his six long years as Mayor, Manchester has missed out on numerous opportunities due to Mayor Gatsas’s inability to work with others. As mayor, I will keep an open and ongoing dialogue with state officials to make sure our city is getting the resources we need.  I will also work with local, county, state, and federal officials to improve our schools, combat the heroin epidemic, fix our crumbling roads, and meet the priorities of Manchester.”

Joyce Craig currently serves as the Ward 1 Alderman and is a candidate for mayor of Manchester. 

Avard and Groh endorse Arnold for Mayor of Manchester

ARNOLD MAYORAL BID RECEIVES BI-PARTISAN SUPPORT

FROM MANCHESTER SCHOOL BOARD MEMBERS

patrick-arnold-3Manchester, New Hampshire – Today, the Patrick Arnold for Mayor campaign picked up two additional endorsements from the Manchester School Board – Dr. John Avard, a Republican from ward 10, and Theo Groh, a Democrat, from ward 3.

“Our city has suffered long enough under failed leadership,” says Avard. “We’re in a downward spiral and we can either continue into the abyss, or stop it and turn things around. That’s why I’m supporting Patrick Arnold to be our new leader in the corner office at City Hall,” Avard continued.

“I’m proud of the support our campaign has earned across party lines. The challenges we face as a city are not Democratic or Republican problems, and there’s more that unites us than divides us in Manchester,” says Arnold. “It’s one thing to work together, yet another thing to get the results our city needs. As mayor, I look forward to doing both,” Arnold continued.

The endorsements come less than twelve hours after Avard led the Manchester School Board in a vote of no confidence in Mayor Ted Gatsas.

Avard and Groh join several of their colleagues in supporting Arnold’s call for authentic change at City Hall. At-large School Board member Kathy Staub, and School Board members Amy Bradley of ward 4, Katie Desrochers of ward 11, and Connie Van Houten of ward 12 have all previously endorsed Arnold’s 2015 mayoral bid.

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Patrick Arnold is a candidate for mayor of Manchester, New Hampshire. Arnold served as a Manchester Alderman from 2009 until 2014. In 2013, he was the Democratic candidate for mayor against Mayor Ted Gatsas, the Republican incumbent. Less than 500 voters separated Manchester from new executive leadership in 2013. In March 2014, the Manchester Board of Aldermen unanimously confirmed Arnold’s appointment to the city’s Conduct Committee. An attorney by trade, Arnold earned his law degree at the University of New Hampshire School of Law. He and his wife, Kathy, have a daughter, Abigail.

Joyce Craig Statement on ‘No Confidence’ Vote by Manchester School Committee

Joyce Craig MayorMANCHESTER – Alderman Joyce Craig has released the following statement on the Manchester Board of School Committee’s vote of ‘no confidence’ in Mayor Gatsas:

“Last night, the Board of School Committee overwhelmingly passed a bipartisan vote of ‘no confidence’ in the Mayor’s ability to improve our schools,” said Craig. “For six years the Mayor has bullied his way through these School Board meetings to the detriment of our students, teachers, and taxpayers.  During his tenure, we have lost teachers, our class sizes are still high, we lost the sending towns of Auburn, Hooksett, and Candia, and now our school year begins in a few weeks and teachers will return to their classrooms without a contract in place for the third year in a row.  As the mother of three children in the Manchester public school system, I am nervous about what to expect in the fall. Because of Mayor Gatsas’s veto, I fear class sizes will again be higher than state standards and that our students will suffer as a result.

“Our city deserves better, and as Mayor I look forward to working collaboratively with the School Board to explore options to improve our city’s education while saving taxpayer dollars.  We have great colleges and universities in Manchester, and I will work to form public/private partnerships and develop programs that can benefit all Manchester students.  We also must rebuild our broken relationships, and I will actively work to reopen the dialogue with our sending towns of Hooksett and Candia and bring these students back to our schools.  And finally, we must be open to opportunities to improve our schools, and I will always put the needs of our students and taxpayers first and will approve this fiscally responsible compromise.

“We have many opportunities to improve our schools, and I will be the leader who will build consensus to move our district forward.  The School Board has lost faith in the Mayor’s ability to advance our city’s education.  The Mayor’s confrontational attitude has also alienated many state officials and our city continually loses out on new opportunities to advance and grow.  We need a problem solver and consensus builder to truly move our city forward, and that is why I am running for mayor of Manchester.”

Joyce Craig currently serves as the Ward 1 Alderman and is a candidate for mayor of Manchester.

Remarks by Bernie Sanders at National Nurses United’s Endorsement

** Read “Nurses Endorse Sen. Bernie Sanders for President” here.

Sen. Bernie Sanders with NNU members at Oakland rally August 10

Sen. Bernie Sanders with NNU members at Oakland rally August 10

Let me begin by thanking RoseAnn DeMoro, and the 185,000 members of National Nurses United, for providing high quality healthcare to the American people.

I am honored to have the support of the largest nurse’s union in this country!

Year after year, I have been proud to work with National Nurses United fighting to expand Medicare, fighting to address the nursing shortage in this country, and fighting to make sure that nurses at the VA and all over this country have the right to collectively bargain for decent wages and benefits, among many other things.

There is no job in this country that is more demanding, more important, and more fulfilling than being a nurse.

You take care of our young children when they get sick. You take care of the elderly in their time of need. You take care of our veterans, many of whom have come home with no arms, no legs, and no eyesight.

And, you give people hope that they will live to see a better day.

Last year, when nurses became infected with Ebola after treating sick patients, I marched with you in Oakland to make sure that every nurse in America has the training, the equipment, and the protective gear that they need to stay healthy. And, we need to make sure that gets done.

We have a nursing shortage in this country that we have got to address. We need to make it a national priority to work together to train more nurses, and that’s exactly what I intend to do as your President. We all know that nurses prevent medical errors, reduce health care costs, and help patients recover more quickly. We need to be looking at health outcomes and nurses are the key to making patients healthier.

During the debate over the Affordable Care Act, I was delighted to work with you to substantially increase funding for the National Health Service Corps to provide scholarships and loan repayments for nurses and other health care professionals who work in areas where there is a desperate need for quality healthcare.

As you know, I have spent my career fighting for something that I consider to be a human right. That human right is health care. And let me say loudly and clearly – health care is a right of all people, not a privilege.

The time has come for us to end the international embarrassment of the United States of America, our great country, being the only major country on earth that does not guarantee healthcare to all people as a right. And together – with your help – we are going to end that embarrassment.

All of you here today – nurses who see people at their sickest, at their most vulnerable – understand better than anyone the extent of the tragedy that exists in this country when people have no health insurance.

Every single year thousands of our fellow Americans die because they don’t get the preventive care they need when they should. They wait and wait until the problem can’t be ignored any more and they show up in the emergency room – far sicker than they should have ever gotten. Sick with an illness that could have been prevented, could have been caught far sooner.

And when the doctor or the nurse say well why didn’t you come in when you were first sick, they say well, I didn’t have any health insurance. I didn’t have any money. Or maybe I did have insurance, but my deductible was so high I just couldn’t afford to take the money out of pocket.

That should not happen in the United States of America. When you’re sick, you should be able to access health care. When you go to the hospital, you should not come out in bankruptcy.

Nobody understands that reality more than the National Nurses United!

That’s why I have been proud to work with all of you to guarantee health care as a right of citizenship to every man, woman, and child in this country. The time has come for the United States to join every other major industrialized country and make sure that we have a health care system that works for all of our people.

The time has come for a Medicare for All single payer health care program.

We have got to move towards a healthcare system which is based on providing quality care to all of our people rather than worrying about the profits of the insurance companies.

We have got to move toward a healthcare system which ends the absurdity of Americans paying, by far, the highest price for prescription drugs in the world.

And, we have got to require Medicare to negotiate with the drug companies to lower the outrageously high prices of prescription drugs.

And, do you know what we are also going to do? We are going to impose a financial transactions tax on Wall Street speculators in order to make sure that tuition is free in public colleges and universities throughout this country.

One of the major reasons why the middle class is collapsing, 45 million Americans are living in poverty, and the gap between the very rich and everyone else is growing wider, is because of the greed, recklessness, and illegal behavior on Wall Street.

In my view, if we are going to rebuild the middle class, and allow Americans to get the education, the healthcare, and the jobs they need, we have got to make sure that Wall Street pays its fair share in taxes.

Not only would a tax on Wall Street speculation provide us with the revenue that we need to make a college education tuition free, it would also reduce speculation and encourage Wall Street to invest in the job-creating productive economy.

This is not a radical idea. It was done in this country from 1914-1966. Today, it’s what 40 countries around the world are doing.

And I am very proud to have worked with you on legislation to do just that!

Wall Street has got to understand that it can’t have it all. If we are going to have the best educated workforce in the world and a vibrant middle class, Wall Street has got to pay its fair share in taxes.

And with your support, and the support of millions of other Americans we can build a political revolution in this country that can make this happen.

It’s time to say enough is enough!

We are going to make healthcare a right of all of our people!

We are going to make public colleges and universities tuition free and substantially reduce student loan debt in America!

We are going to make it easier, not harder, for nurses and millions of Americans to join unions and collectively bargain for better wages and benefits!

We are going to rebuild the middle class in America!

Original Post: https://berniesanders.com/remarks-at-national-nurses-united-endorsement/

Nurses Endorse Sen. Bernie Sanders for President

First National Union Endorsement for Sanders

Sen. Bernie Sanders with NNU members at Oakland rally August 10

Sen. Bernie Sanders with NNU members at Oakland rally August 10

Noting his issues “align with nurses from top to bottom,” National Nurses United, the nation’s largest organization of nurses, today endorsed Senator Bernie Sanders for President.

“Bernie Sanders has a proven track record of uncompromised activism and advocacy for working people, and a message that resonates with nurses, and, as we have all seen, tens of thousands of people across the country. He can talk about our issues as well as we can talk about our issues. We are proud to stand with him in his candidacy for President today,” said NNU Executive Director RoseAnn DeMoro.

NNU, which represents some 185,000 nurses from California to Florida, including nurses who live in the early caucus and primary states of Iowa, New Hampshire, and Nevada, becomes the first national union to endorse Sanders.

NNU Bernie Sanders 2The announcement was made at a National Nurses Conversation with Bernie Sanders attended by hundreds of RNs in the Oakland, Ca office of NNU, and watched on live stream, with questions asked, by nurses at 34 watch parties in 14 states. The festive  “Brunch with Bernie” even included ice cream donated by Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield, founders of Ben and Jerry’s Ice Cream.

“Bernie’s issues align with nurses from top to bottom,” DeMoro continued. Among them – “insisting that healthcare for everyone is a right not a privilege, protecting Social Security and Medicare from those who want to destroy or privatize it and working to expand both, holding Wall Street accountable for the damage it has done to our communities, understanding the threat to public health from the climate crisis, environmental degradation, and the Trans-Pacific Partnership, support for minimum nurse-to-patient ratios for hospital patients, and on and on,” DeMoro said

The NNU Executive Council voted to endorse Sanders. Factors for NNU backing, said DeMoro, included:

  • Sanders’ long history of support for NNU, nurses and patients,
  • A 100 percent scorecard on a questionnaire NNU sent to all the Democratic and Republican Presidential candidates,
  • Overwhelming support for Sanders among NNU members in an internal poll, and
  • Sanders’ response to issues before the AFL-CIO Executive Council.

NNU, said DeMoro, has adopted a call to “Vote Nurses Values – caring, compassion, community. Nurses take the pulse of America, and have to care for the fallout of every social and economic problem — malnutrition, homelessness, un-payable medical bills, the stress and mental disorders from joblessness, higher asthma rates, cancer, heart ailments and birth defects from environmental pollution and the climate crisis. Bernie Sanders’s prescriptions best represents the humanity and the values nurses embrace.”

DeMoro noted that in a presentation July 29 to the AFL-CIO Executive Council, on which DeMoro sits as a national vice president, “he made it clear that you will never have to wonder which side he is on. As he told the union leaders, ‘I see myself as part of you. This is not a conventional moment, we are fighting for the future of this country’.”

A central focus for nurses, DeMoro noted, is “our dysfunctional healthcare system. Too many Americans, even with the Affordable Care Act, remain priced out of access to the health care they need even if they have insurance due to lack of effective price controls, and a still broken system based on private profit not patient need. Sanders has long championed the full, humane reform we need, an updated, expanded Medicare for all.”

She noted Sanders’ statement July 30th in Washington at a rally, hosted by NNU to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the enactment of Medicare and Medicaid, at which Sanders said, “Let’s end the international embarrassment of the U.S. being the only major country on earth that does not guarantee healthcare to all people as a right. The time has come to say that we need to expand Medicare to every man, woman, and child as a single-payer national healthcare program.”

Nurses also welcome Sanders call, evidenced in a bill he authored, S 1731, calling for a Robin Hood tax on Wall Street speculation, on trades of stocks and other financial instruments, that could raise hundreds of billions of dollars annually to pay for healthcare for all, free college tuition to expand access to education, more jobs at living wages, ending AIDS, real action against the climate crisis, and other basic needs.

“Economic inequality remains the fundamental issue of our time. It is a major reason why the U.S. lags so far behind many other industrial nations not only in poverty and social injustice, but in a broad array of health outcomes, from maternal and infant mortality to life expectancy. Sanders’ leadership in calling for Wall Street to pay its share for rebuilding our national and global communities is a reminder of why we need his vision leading America,” DeMoro said.

Sanders also stands out, said DeMoro, in his outspoken opposition to the Trans-Pacific Partnership, “which includes a terrible handout to pharmaceutical giants that will further drive up drug prices, a life and death issue for millions of people.”

NNU Bernie Sanders 3

NH Voters Strongly Support Planned Parenthood Funding

New Survey Finds New Hampshire Voters Strongly Support Planned Parenthood Funding, Strongly Oppose Potential Government Shutdown

Poll Finds Major Political Liability for Senator Ayotte Due to Her Support for Defunding Preventive Health Care Services at Planned Parenthood

Planned_Parenthood_logo.svgWashington, DC—A new survey conducted by Hart Research Associates on behalf of Planned Parenthood Action Fund shows that New Hampshire voters strongly support Planned Parenthood despite weeks of outrageous political attacks from anti-abortion extremists and their allies in Congress. The poll found strong opposition to measures like the one the Executive Council approved last week to defund the preventive health services, including cancer screenings and birth control, that Planned Parenthood provides to millions of women in communities across the country; overwhelming opposition to a government shutdown over Planned Parenthood; and major political liability for Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-NH), who voted earlier this month to defund these vital health services.

Key findings from the survey include:

  • 66 percent of New Hampshire voters oppose defunding Planned Parenthood’s preventive health services, including 72 percent of Independents.
  • 65 percent of New Hampshire voters do not believe that defunding is justified by the deceptively-edited videos released in recent weeks by anti-abortion extremists.
  • An overwhelming majority of New Hampshire voters (75 percent), including a majority of Republican voters (51 percent), have an unfavorable reaction to the idea of shutting down the federal government to block any funding for Planned Parenthood.
  • 56 percent of New Hampshire voters would be less likely to support Sen. Ayotte for re-election as a result of her vote to defund preventive health care services at Planned Parenthood.
  • Roughly two-thirds of New Hampshire voters (68 percent) want Sen. Ayotte to take a clear stand right now against shutting down the government over Planned Parenthood. And nearly two-thirds of voters (62 percent) would be less likely to support Sen. Ayotte for re-election if she votes to shut down the government over Planned Parenthood.

You can find a memo from Hart Research Associates HERE. You can find the poll’s top lines HERE.

Statement of Geoff Garin, President, Hart Research Associates

“These findings in New Hampshire mirror the findings from our national survey: strong support for Planned Parenthood, strong opposition to defunding, and clear political danger signs for Senators who continue to pursue attacks on Planned Parenthood and an anti-women’s health agenda. Support for defunding Planned Parenthood will take a political toll on Sen. Ayotte, including among voters who otherwise might be inclined to support her for reelection. These results leave little doubt that those who want to lead their party to a shutdown fight over Planned Parenthood are creating the likelihood of a political debacle for the Republican Party brand and for GOP candidates in 2016 reelection battles.”

Statement of Dawn Laguens, Executive Vice President, Planned Parenthood Action Fund:

“Today’s poll makes it clear: American voters continue to stand strongly with Planned Parenthood and reject these transparently political attacks. Voters know who Planned Parenthood is: the nation’s most trusted reproductive health care provider, and the place millions of women, men and young people turn to each year for basic, preventive care such as birth control or cancer screenings. This relentless, month-long campaign by anti-abortion extremists has not swayed voters, instead they see it for what it is: a concerted effort to end access to safe and legal abortion that is well outside the mainstream. As this poll, and the three national polls before it have shown us, there is a political price to pay for politicians who attack Planned Parenthood and get swept up in a race to the bottom on women’s health.”

Statement of Jennifer Frizzell, Vice President, Planned Parenthood New Hampshire Action Fund

“For fifty years, tens of thousands of New Hampshire women, men, and young people have chosen Planned Parenthood of Northern New England as their healthcare provider. Today’s polling makes it crystal clear that politicians like Senator Kelly Ayotte, who has repeatedly voted for defunding Planned Parenthood, are on the wrong side of public opinion, the wrong side of public health, and the wrong side of history. New Hampshire voters are watching and they will remember in 2016.”

Last year, Planned Parenthood of Northern New England served 41,643 patients, nearly 13,000 of them in New Hampshire.

Planned Parenthood’s non-profit health centers provide a wide range of preventive health care services, and serve a total of 2.7 million patients per year — at least 60 percent of whom benefit from public health coverage programs such as the nation’s family planning program and Medicaid. More than half of Planned Parenthood’s health centers are in rural or medically-underserved areas, meaning that often without Planned Parenthood, our patients would have nowhere else to turn for reproductive health care. More than 90 percent of the care Planned Parenthood provides is preventive, including lifesaving cancer screenings, birth control, and testing and treatment for sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Approximately 1 in 5 women has relied on a Planned Parenthood health center for care in her lifetime.

The surveys released today follow a national survey with similar findings released two weeks ago. That survey found that 64 percent of voters nationwide, including 72 percent of Independents, do not agree with Congressional Republicans who say that “there should be an immediate vote to end all government funding for Planned Parenthood, including for services Planned Parenthood provides, such as cancer screenings and family planning” because of the videos.

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Planned Parenthood New Hampshire Action Fund is an independent, nonpartisan, not-for-profit membership organization formed as the advocacy and political arm of Planned Parenthood of Northern New England in New Hampshire. The Action Fund engages in educational and electoral activity, including legislative education, grassroots organizing, and legislative advocacy. Follow us on Twitter.

Arnold Calls for Gatsas to Step Aside, School Board Votes No Confidence in Gatsas

patrick-arnold-3Manchester, New Hampshire –  Last night, in public comments to the Manchester School Board, mayoral candidate and former Alderman Patrick Arnold called Mayor Gatsas’ recent veto of a proposed teachers’ contract “absurd” and urged Gatsas to step aside.

“Mayor Gatsas, work with those elected by the voters, or step aside for someone who will,” Arnold said before a city hall chamber packed with concerned parents and educators broke into applause.

Later in the evening, the Manchester School Board took a vote of no confidence in Mayor Ted Gatsas. “Tonight’s vote of no confidence further demonstrates that Ted Gatsas has lost a mandate to lead this city,” says Arnold in response to the vote. “People of this city deserve strong leadership to move beyond business as usual, and the clock has run out on Ted Gatsas’ failed leadership.”

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Patrick Arnold is a candidate for mayor of Manchester, New Hampshire. Arnold served as a Manchester Alderman from 2009 until 2014. In 2013, he was the Democratic candidate for mayor against Mayor Ted Gatsas, the Republican incumbent. Less than 500 voters separated Manchester from a new mayor in 2013. In March 2014, the Manchester Board of Mayor and Aldermen unanimously confirmed Arnold’s appointment to the city’s Conduct Committee. An attorney by trade, Arnold earned his law degree at the University of New Hampshire School of Law. He and his wife, Kathy, have a daughter, Abigail.

PCCC, Demos Applaud Hillary Clinton’s New College Compact

 (image Keith Kissel FLIKR)

(image Keith Kissel FLIKR)

“Hillary Clinton’s plan is very big and ambitious — leading to debt-free college and increased economic opportunity for millions of Americans. The center of gravity on higher education has shifted from tinkering with interest rates to making college debt free — and Clinton’s bold proposal is emblematic of the rising economic populist tide in American politics.”

— Adam Green, co-founder, Progressive Change Campaign Committee

“With the plan, millions of America’s working families will have access to debt-free public college at both two- and four-year institutions.”

— Tamara Draut, Senior Vice President of Policy and Research, Demos

MSNBC: Clinton’s sweeping new debt-free college plan

by Alexander Seitz-Wald

It’s one of the issues Clinton hears about most on the campaign trail. And at a campaign event in New Hampshire Monday, the former secretary of state will unveil sweeping proposed reforms.

Clinton’s so-called “New College Compact,” detailed in three fact sheets shared with reporters, is the most detailed and expensive plan she has unveiled so far on her 2016 presidential campaign. “Students will be able to attend an in-state public university to get a 4-year degree without ever having to take out a loan for tuition,” one fact sheet claims.

While the tax hike and other issues would likely run into opposition in Congress, Clinton’s campaign wants to cast a marker with the plan. Politically, the effort could energize young voters, who were critical to President Obama’s victory over Clinton in the 2008 primary and then to both his general election wins.

Adam Green, the co-founder of the Progressive Change Campaign Committee, which has been one of the groups leading the effort for debt-free college, praised the plan. “Hillary Clinton’s plan is very big and ambitious – leading to debt-free college and increased economic opportunity for millions of Americans,” said Green, who has sometimes been critical of Clinton in the past.”

“The center of gravity on higher education has shifted from tinkering with interest rates to making college debt free – and Clinton’s bold proposal is emblematic of the rising economic populist tide in American politics,” he added. …

Politicians have to deal with the issue, said Mark Huelsman, a senior policy fellow at Demos, the New York-based liberal think tank that has been the intellectual driving force behind the idea of debt-free college.

“The benchmark for us has always been that any plan provides a pathway to debt free college or a pathway for a majority of students to graduate without taking on debt. That’s been a galvanizing issue for progressives,” he said. “Unfortunately, voters are responding to their pocketbooks. We like to point out that student debt was not the norm for most students until the 1990s, really. If you wanted a bachelor’s degree for most of our history, you didn’t have to take on debt to do so. Now it’s basically a requirement. And with college becoming more important in the labor market, not less, there’s a lot of anxiety about it.”

WALL STREET JOURNAL: Hillary Clinton Proposes Debt-Free Tuition at Public Colleges

by Laura Meckler and Josh Mitchell

Hillary Clinton is proposing an expansive program aimed at enabling students to attend public colleges and universities without taking on loans for tuition, her attempt to address a source of anxiety for American families while advancing one of the left’s most sweeping new ideas.

The plan—dubbed the “New College Compact” and estimated to cost $350 billion over 10 years—would fundamentally reshape the federal government’s role in higher education by offering new federal money, but with strings attached. …

The Clinton campaign views this proposal as a centerpiece of its domestic agenda, akin in importance to health care in 2008, and it is her most expensive proposal so far. The campaign said it would pay for it by limiting deductions for upper-income tax filers, which President Barack Obama has repeatedly proposed without success. …

Adam Green, co-founder of the Progressive Change Campaign Committee, which has worked to make college affordability a top issue, said he was excited by the plan and sees it as helping to shift the debate over higher education from adjusting interest rates to trying to make college debt free. “Hillary Clinton’s plan is very big and ambitious, leading to debt-free college and increased economic opportunity for millions of Americans,” he said.

AFT Members Voice Their Support For Hillary Clinton In Latest AFT VIDEO

 (image Keith Kissel FLIKR)

(image Keith Kissel FLIKR)

A few weeks back, the American Federation of Teachers announced their overwhelming support of Secretary Hillary Clinton for President of United States.

“In vision, in experience and in leadership, Hillary Clinton is the champion working families need in the White House,” said AFT President Randi Weingarten. “Hillary Clinton is a tested leader who shares our values, is supported by our members, and is prepared for a tough fight on behalf of students, families and communities. That fight defines her campaign and her career. In Arkansas, Hillary fought to expand access to early childhood education and care. As first lady, she fought for the right to affordable, high-quality healthcare and helped win that right for our youngest citizens. As senator, she fought for education funding and workers’ rights, and she defended public service workers who came to our nation’s defense on Sept. 11. And as secretary of state, she promoted democracy throughout the world, lifting up the worth and dignity of all people—men and women, gay and straight.”

Upon learning of the union’s endorsement, Clinton said, “For nearly a century, the American Federation of Teachers has worked to expand opportunity for the people and communities they serve. I’m honored to have the support of AFT’s members and leaders, and proud to stand with them to unleash the potential of every American.”

On the heels of the American Federation of Teachers’ endorsement of Hillary Clinton for the Democratic nomination for president, she addressed nearly 2,000 educators via video at the AFT’s biennial TEACH conference in Washington, D.C.

Click here to watch the video on Youtube.

“Together, I know we can build a stronger, fairer, more inclusive America—an America where parents can give their kids real opportunities,” said Clinton in a two-minute address that outlined her agenda for expanding early childhood education, ensuring college affordability, and working with teachers to improve public education.

There is no doubt that Hillary Clinton will make a great President and can see why the American Federation of Teachers would endorse such a strong, passionate, dedicated woman to be their candidate.

Though some have criticized AFT’s early endorsement, the process was highly democratic.  AFT used scientific polling, online and over the phone, to connect with over 1 million of their 1.7 million members.  79% of the one million members reached wanted AFT to endorse Hillary Clinton.

Yesterday, AFT released this video highlighting real members at their recent TEACH convention personally endorsing Hillary Clinton for President.  Each member points to a specific moment of event that helped them decide that they were “ready for Hillary.”

All of the members highlighted Hillary Clinton’s strong understand of the issues facing teachers in the classroom, their rights as union members, and helping to rebuild a strong middle class.

Nashua Teachers Union Recommends Jim Donchess for Mayor

Teachers Back Donchess for His Strong Commitment to Education
and Proven Record of Supporting Nashua’s Schools.

NASHUA—Today, the Nashua Teachers Union announced its endorsement of Jim Donchess in his campaign for Mayor, asking its members and their families and neighbors who reside in Nashua to support Donchess during his campaign and in the September 8th Primary Election.

The Nashua Teachers Union is made up of teachers in the Nashua school district, and is a municipal affiliate of the American Federation of Teachers-New Hampshire (AFT-NH). AFT-NH Local 1044 President Bob Sherman, among numerous other educators, cited Donchess’ unwavering commitment to education.

“After reviewing all of the candidates who submitted their responses to the Teachers Union Committee on Political Education (COPE) questionnaire on education, the COPE Committee voted almost unanimously to support Jim. Given his longstanding record on and commitment to education in Nashua, we know that Jim is the right choice,” said AFT-NH Local 1044 President Bob Sherman.

“I’ve known Jim since our children were in elementary school together many years ago. His commitment to public education and learning has been the root of him as a citizen of Nashua and as a public servant. His support of education spans decades, and he is and has always been authentic and genuine in his commitment to our city,” says Nashua High School South teacher Judy Loftus. “In 2010, when he saw budget cuts that would have resulted in the loss of many teachers in Nashua, he and a group of citizens formed the organization Nashua Schools Back On Top. They advocated successfully to restore many of those cuts before the budget was finalized. We must elect Jim as Mayor to have a partner in City Hall who ensures that children and teachers in Nashua always have an advocate.”

“About a year ago Jim stopped by my house and we had a really in-depth conversation about education. I was, and have continued to be, very impressed by his outreach to Nashua residents and his commitment to children,” says Ledge Street Elementary School Teacher Sylvie Stewart. “Jim knows that the most beneficial way to improve Nashua is through working with educators to provide a high quality public-school education, one that meets the demands of all its children so that each child has the opportunity to thrive.”

“It’s an honor to have earned the support of Nashua’s teachers.  Education is the backbone of any community and when schools thrive, the community thrives and our economy thrives,” said Donchess. “Making children, teachers and education a priority in Nashua is key if we want our city to grow and succeed.”

About the American Federation of Teachers New Hampshire Local 1044

AFT-NH Local 1044 is the Municipal Affiliate of the American Federation of Teachers-New Hampshire. AFT Local 1044 has nearly 1,500 members in Nashua, including teachers, para-educators, secretaries and food service employees.

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