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Summary: Advocating for Peace: Week of August 29

6 New Items including:

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  • Peace: The Real Deficit Buster
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  • Tell NBC: Debate the Afghanistan War
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David Culver, ed., Evergreene Digest

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Jeff Danziger

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Peace: The Real Deficit Buster, Joe Volk, Friends (Quakers) Committee on National Legislation (FCNL)

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  • For the first time in decades, real cuts in Pentagon spending could be on the agenda.
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  • But military contractors and some members of Congress are demanding that no cuts be made in their favorite Pentagon projects.
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  • Tell the deficit commission: Cut military spending, not Social Security
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Helping Veterans, Will Shapira, Evergreene Digest
Here are some capusle reviews in the hope that those interested in helping our brave troops reintegrate into society---regardless of your opinion of the wars they were involved in---will follow up.

Upcoming Peace Events! Coleen Rowley, Evergreene Digest
WAMM's new campaign...protest Robert Delahunty at U of St. Thomas...End the war on terror...Talk: War is Bankrupting Our Nation and Making Us Less Safe!...more!

Tell NBC: Debate the Afghanistan War, Fairness & Accuracy in Reporting (FAIR)
Thousands have signed on to FAIR's petition--add your voice today and keep the pressure on NBC to have a real war debate!
Meet the Press missing antiwar voices

Minneapolis Denies Permits for Anti-War March at Democratic National Convention, Women Against Military Madness
Officials responsible for making the decision to turn down the application for the anti war march have not even bothered to put forward coherent reasons that are consistent with the law.

Tell the deficit commission: Cut military spending, not Social Security

We need real solutions, not a manufactured crisis
Deficit commission almost done deciding to slash Social Security
Top 5 Social Security Myths

Matt Lockshin, CREDO Action

Submitted by Evergreene Digest Contributing Editor Thomas Sklarski

At a time when the country desperately needs more jobs, a powerful commission appointed by President Obama is meeting in secret to make recommendations to lower the federal budget deficit.

And, unfortunately, the commission has been stacked with people who have obsessed for decades over cutting Social Security benefits or transforming it from a broad-based program into a privatized retirement program.

From the public statements of commission members and leaks of the secret meetings, it is clear that the commission is avoiding serious discussion of the real causes of our deficit in order to create a sense of panic around Social Security.

Click here to automatically sign our petition to the members of the deficit commission telling them to make recommendations that significantly lower military spending, allow the Bush tax cuts for the top 2% to expire, and modify health care reform to include a robust public option to lower costs.

Today, we should not be cutting the deficit but instead investing in critical public goods that create jobs. After we strengthen our economy, it is appropriate to focus on lowering the deficit. The Commission would enhance public discourse by focusing on three critical drivers of long term deficits:

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  1. Burgeoning military spending — much higher than any other country — and magnified by two wars of choice.
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  3. The Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest 2%, and
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  5. Rapidly rising health care costs driven by an inefficient private insurance market.
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Instead of productively focusing the nation's and Congressional attention on these factors, some in the deficit commission are focused on privatizing Social Security and cutting benefits.

Click here to automatically sign our petition to the members of the deficit commission telling them to make recommendations that significantly lower military spending, allow the Bush tax cuts for the top 2% to expire, and modify health care reform to include a robust public option to lower costs.

Thank you for standing up for Social Security.

Related:

Deficit commission almost done deciding to slash Social Security, Alex Pareene, Salon
The commission's report is not yet finished, but it is a foregone conclusion that what to do about the deficit will probably turn out to be "severely scale back the social safety net."

Top 5 Social Security Myths, Nita Chaudhary, MoveOn.org Political Action
We've put together a list of the top five myths about Social Security, along with the real story.

Upcoming Peace Events!

WAMM's new campaign...protest Robert Delahunty at U of St. Thomas...End the war on terror...Talk: War is Bankrupting Our Nation and Making Us Less Safe!...more!

Coleen Rowley, Evergreene Digest

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Come check out WAMM’s new campaign to connect people with the costs of the wars!  This Wednesday at the Lake St Bridge!  (5 to 6 pm)

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Also come to the:

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  • Burnsville Peace Vigil on Tuesdays (4:30 pm to 5:30 pm) at Nicollet and Burnsville Pkwy
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  • Eagan Peace Vigil on Thursdays (4:30 pm to 5:30 pm) at Pilot Knob and Yankee Doodle
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Monday, August 30, (10:00 to 11:00 am) leafleting and bannering at University of St. Thomas Law School, 1100 LaSalle Avenue, Minneapolis. On their return to classes, we need to remind the St. Thomas School of Law how it’s failing to follow its own Mission Statement when it employs Robert Delahunty who co-authored with John Yoo the Office of Legal Counsel memos that declared the Geneva Conventions no longer applied to “non-state Actors” thus opening the door to torture.

"The University of St. Thomas School of Law, as a Catholic law school, is dedicated to integrating faith and reason in the search for truth through a focus on morality and social justice."  

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Protest:  End the War on Terror!

Saturday, September 11th @ 1pm @ Hennepin & Lagoon in front of the Walker Library (2880 Hennepin), Minneapolis.

Demand an end to the U.S. war on terror throughout the world! Say NO to the U.S. occupations in Afghanistan and Iraq! Say NO MORE aid to Israel and Colombia because they use U.S. tax dollars to fund massacres! Say NO to the use of "terrorism" as an excuse to justify killing, torture, and an erosion of our civil liberties!
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n 2001, three thousand people lost their lives in the attacks on September 11th. And though we have not forgotten this tragedy, we cannot allow it to hold us captive. The U.S. government has used these deaths to justify a war agenda which has created September 11ths around the globe every day in places like Afghanistan, Iraq, Palestine and Colombia. Let's come together to demand that U.S. tax dollars be spent helping people stay in their homes, keeping people out of poverty, and educating our children, instead of spreading terror abroad. 

Initiated by the Anti-War Committee.  Endorsed by Al-Aqsa Institute, Coalition for Palestinian Rights, Freedom Road Socialist Organization, the Minnesota Immigrant Rights Action Committee (MIRAc), the Iraq Peace Action Coalition, Iraq Veterans Against the War - MN, Military Families Speak Out - MN, Palestine-Israel Justice Project of the United Methodist Church, RNC 8 Defense Committee, sds at the U of M, Twin Cities Peace Campaign, Veterans for Peace Chapter 27, the Welfare Rights Committee, & Women Against Military Madness.
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War is Bankrupting Our Nation and Making Us Less Safe!
Hear Coleen Rowley and Jack Nelson-Pallmeyer 
Monday, September 13 at 6:30 p.m.
Plymouth Congregational Church, 1900 Nicollet Ave, Minneapolis

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  • The Iraq and Afghan Wars cost over $1.5 billion every week. Despite a $2.5 trillion Social Security surplus, politicians are discussing cutting your benefits to pay for the deficits caused by these unfunded wars.
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  • Instead of improving U.S. security, our intelligence analysts have concluded that the war in Iraq has become a primary recruitment vehicle for extremists, motivating a new generation around the world...(Washington Post)
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  • Taxpayers in Minnesota will pay $26.1 billion (to date) for the total Iraq and Afghanistan war spending since 2001. For the same amount of money, the following could have been provided:
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  • 6,327,790 People Receiving Low-Income Healthcare for One Year OR
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  • 398,720 Police or Sheriff's Patrol Officers for One Year OR
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  • 628,667 Firefighters for One Year OR
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  • 2,278,137 Scholarships for University Students for One Year OR
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  • 4,706,507 Students receiving Pell Grants of $5550 OR
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  • 19,639,937 Children Receiving Low-Income Healthcare for One Year OR
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  • 3,558,488 Head Start Slots for Children for One Year OR
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  • 6,660,831 Households with Renewable Electricity - Solar Photovoltaic for One Year OR
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  • 417,854 Elementary School Teachers for One Year OR
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  • 17,762,217 Households with Renewable Electricity-Wind Power for One Year
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And remember the message of President Eisenhower: "We are not spending money alone. We are spending the blood of our soldiers, the sweat of our laborers, the genius of our scientists, and the hope of our children."

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Coleen Rowley exposed the FBI’s mishandling of information related to the 9/11 attacks and was named one of Time Magazine’s Persons of the Year in 2002. Jack Nelson-Pallmeyer is an author and Professor of Justice and Peace Studies at the University of St. Thomas. 

This program is free and open to the public.

Sponsored by: Network for Spiritual Progressives, Twin Cities Peace Campaign and Women Against Military Madness (WAMM). For info: 612-827-5364.

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Support Bradley Manning and WikiLeaks

As General Petraeus backs away from Obama’s promise to begin withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan in June 2011, we need to support PFC Bradley Manning beingheld in the Quantico Marine brig who is facing 52 years and the wrath of the Pentagon for having “leaked” the “Collateral Murder” video of the Apache helicopter shooting of Iraqi civilians including two Reuters employees and two children.  WikiLeaks is planning on posting 15,000 more Af-Pak War documents next month.

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Sign the petition to support Manning.

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(A press conference in the Twin Cities is being planned for the time of the release of the Afghan War documents.)     

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Cartoon taken from Dave Culver’s tribute to Molly Ivins, “Friday Fun Day”.  (Contact Dave if you want to get on his list.  Every Friday he plays Jon Stewart, selecting the week’s best cartoon satire and pictures which are worth a 1000 words.)

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Also mark your calendar for these two upcoming concerts in September in the Twin Cities by David Rovics on his “Prairie Fire” US Tour:

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  • Friday, September 24th, Walker Stage, Minneapolis, MN, Contact Amy Danzeisen
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  • Saturday, September 25th, Black Dog Cafe, St. Paul, MN, Contact Sara
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Rotten Eggs

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Please ask your senators to make recalling unsafe food mandatory.

Andre Delattre, U.S. Public Interest Research Group (USPIRG)

Wright County Egg, which distributes nationwide under 16 brand names, has sold the American public 380 million eggs with a high risk of salmonella contamination. [1]

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But, because food recalls are entirely voluntary, people have been getting sick from these eggs since May. This recall is in response to an FDA investigation, but the FDA can't actually order Wright County to recall the eggs, regardless of the threat to public health. [2]

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Let's change that now. The Senate has a bill in front of it that would give the FDA the power it needs to protect consumers.

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Please ask your senators to make recalling unsafe food mandatory.

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Let's turn this crisis into an opportunity and push our senators to pass the FDA Food Safety Modernization Bill. This bill will increase inspections and testing of the foods -- like eggs -- that are the most susceptible to bacterial contamination, and it will give the FDA the authority to order mandatory recalls when unsafe food threatens public health.

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Please ask your senators to prevent dangerous food from ending up on the breakfast table.

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Notes:

[1] Egg Producer Expands Recall After Links to Salmonella, New York Times, Aug. 19, 2010.
[2] If you have purchased eggs covered by the recall, you are asked to return them to the store. For more information, click here.

FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski in Minneapolis

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  • We just learned about a free event tomorrow (Tuesday, August 24) at the University of Minnesota that will feature FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski. Our friends at Free Press just sent out the following action alert about it, and we wanted to make sure you saw it.
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  • Tell Chairman Genachowski: Do Your Job. Save the Internet!
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  • Please attend if you can. Genachoswki is stalling under industry pressure and if net neutrality supporters don't hold his feet to the fire, he may sell us out. So it's important that we come out to make sure Genachowski knows he needs to act now to protect a free and open Internet.
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  • Franken: Net Neutrality “Biggest Issue Since Freedom of Religion”
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Becky Bond, CREDO Action

Dear Friend,

Last week (August 15-21), 750 Minnesotans packed South High School to tell the FCC to do its job and protect the open Internet. Thousands more watched the event via the Web.

Now we've just learned that FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski is speaking tomorrow (Tuesday, August 24) at the University of Minnesota. The event is free and open to the public.

Show up to tell FCC Chairman Genachowski: Do your job. Save the Internet.

Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar will be joining Genachowski at Tuesday's event. We need you there, too:

Who:    Sen. Amy Klobuchar, FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski
When:  Tuesday, August 24, 2010, 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.
Where: University of Minnesota, Carlson School of Management
3M Auditorium
321 19th Ave South, Minneapolis MN 55455

Sen. Klobuchar has voiced her support for Net Neutrality in the past. Chairman Genachowski once pledged to preserve Net Neutrality. He has also proposed a "Third Way" to restore the FCC's power to protect consumers and promote universal access. But now he's reluctant to take the final step — bringing these issues to a final vote at the FCC.

Genachowski needs to listen less to the big corporations behind closed doors in Washington and listen more to Internet users. He needs to hear from you.

Show up Tuesday Morning. Urge Genachowski to Protect Net Neutrality. <>

We have created a website where you can learn more about tomorrow's event, download fliers to distribute at the venue and invite others to come along.

Last week, Sen. Al Franken told a standing-room-only crowd that "Net Neutrality is the First Amendment issue of our time." Minnesotans followed Franken's speech with hours of impassioned public testimony urging the FCC to oppose a scheme by big companies to carve up the Internet for themselves.

We have amazing momentum, but unless the FCC gets involved right now, a few corporations will take over the Internet and stifle free speech online.

It's that important. Please go to Tuesday's event and let Chairman Genachowski know that Minnesota supports Net Neutrality.

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FCC should reject the Google-Verizon net-neutrality plan, Ryan Blethen, Seattle Times | WA

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  • The Google and Verizon net-neutrality plan is bad policy that will only benefit the two companies. The FCC should quickly reject the proposal.
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  • Stop Google And Verizon From Setting Our Public Internet Policy
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Franken: Net Neutrality “Biggest Issue Since Freedom of Religion” The Uptake

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  • “Net Neutrality is the biggest issue since Freedom of Religion, which until last week I thought we had worked out” – Senator Al Franken
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  • Full video of the Minneapolis FCC hearing August 19 can be found here.
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  • The Internet: Wired to whose advantage?
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Summary: Advocating for Peace: Week of August 22

3 New Items including:

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  • Bring the Troops Home Picnic
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  • The occupation of Iraq isn't over - it's being rebranded
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David Culver, ed., Evergreene Digest

Bob Gorrell

Bring the Troops Home Picnic, Military Families Speak Out, Minnesota Chapter
Submitted by Evergreene Digest Contributing Editor Coleen Rowley
Sunday, August 22, 1PM, Minnehaha Park, Minneapolis

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The occupation of Iraq isn't over - it's being rebranded, Debra Sweet, World Can't Wait

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  • The occupation of Iraq is only being re-branded, not ended. Despite President Obama's fallacious claims that the war in Iraq is winding down, the 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment is deploying!
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  • We Are Not Your Soldiers!
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  • Collateral Murder: U.S. Soldier Ethan McCord's Eyewitness Story
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Healing of Memories Workshop October 25-27, Sheila Laughton, Loyola Spirituality Center
Please pass along to vets, service members, family members, and those who care for them that you know.

Second Circuit Ruling Reverses Lower Court's Decision in ACORN

A deeply conservative panel of the Second Circuit Court of Appeals unanimously reversed the multiple victories we had in the lower court.

Bill Quigley, Center for Constitutional Rights

We have gotten some of our best feedback from friends and allies this year on our work defending ACORN, so I am sorry to have to pass along the news that a deeply conservative panel of the Second Circuit Court of Appeals unanimously reversed the multiple victories we had in the lower court.

The panel somehow found that ACORN was not being punished when Congress cut off its funding based on rightwing grandstanding, FOX news rants and a video that turned out to be a lie. The court did find that ACORN had standing to sue, just not on Bill of Attainder grounds, and they sent the case back to the District Court to look at possible First Amendment and due process violations.

The Bill of Attainder provision in the U.S. Constitution says that no person or organization may be singled out for punishment by the government without benefit of a trial. The appeals court turned our argument on its head and declared that since hundreds of unspecified allied organizations might be affected by the de-funding it was perfectly legitimate since Congress did not just single out ACORN!   

Though ACORN has obviously been seriously damaged by this campaign, they continue to struggle on and make the best of their situation, while government and independent investigations clear them of wrongdoing again and again. But because we cannot stand by and let this ruling empower the targeting of other politically vulnerable groups like ACORN, we will fight this deeply flawed decision. We will be seeking en banc review by the entire Second Circuit, and will keep you posted on our progress.

For more information visit our case page. Thank you for standing with us and our allies at ACORN. The fight continues!

Fight Washington Corruption

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Join the campaign to Fight Washington Corruption -- sign the pledge today.

Charles Chamberlain, Democracy for America

It's no secret that lobbyists and the big corporations they work for have too much power in Washington today. We've seen them beat back progressive legislation over and over again these past two years.

The public option, climate change legislation, Wall Street reform -- these are just a few of the things killed or watered down by lobbyists and their corporate sponsors.

We're sick of it. That's why MoveOn, Democracy for America and a coalition of progressive groups have joined together in the Other 98% campaign. We're working to get members of Congress and candidates for office to pledge their support for breaking corporate control of Washington and building a better democracy.

Join the campaign to Fight Washington Corruption -- sign the pledge today.

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Our campaign to beat back lobbyists and big corporations calls on Congress to:

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  • Overturn Citizens United to get unlimited corporation money out of elections.
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  • Pass the Fair Elections Now Act to publicly finance federal elections.
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  • Enact a Lobbyist Reform Act to reduce the influence of corporate lobbyists.
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Making our government work for the people and not the powerful isn't going to be easy, but together we can do it. So far, over 475,000 Americans across the country have joined the campaign to fight Washington corruption. Join the movement to beat big corporations -- sign the pledge today.

Get government working for the people and not the powerful -- sign the Fight Washington Corruption pledge today.

Together, we can get government working for the other 98% again.

Thank you for everything you do.

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