|Keith Ellison could use your support||<– Date –> <– Thread –>|
|From: Charles Underwood (peacecalendarvisi.com)|
|Date: Wed, 19 Jul 2006 21:41:05 -0700 (PDT)|
AN APPEAL FOR YOUR TIME: SUPPORT KEITH ELLISON A VERY UNUSUAL CANDIDATE has surfaced in the race for U.S. House from the 5th Congressional District (Minneapolis and some surrounding areas). I am led to send you an e-mail saying why I think this particular race is so important and to outline some opportunities for action. Please forgive me, Greens and those who live at some distance from the Twin Cities; I intend no disrespect at all, but I cannot remove your names from my list. WHY IS THIS RACE SO IMPORTANT? First, it is an important test of the grassroots process. Many of you know that I was an early and strong supporter of Jack Nelson-Pallmeyer in his challenge for this seat. The energy for Jack's campaign was entirely people-power, starting with the precinct caucuses and continuing through the Senate District conventions. When Jack lost the endorsement to Keith, I felt as if the details had been unexpected, but that Keith Ellison was every bit the grassroots candidate for the issues I support, so I felt quite enthusiastic with the endorsement outcome. It was work like other work I have seen: it didn't produce exactly the result I planned on, but the results it produced were wonderful. If we are to use the democratic process for peaceful change, that process cannot simply be for sale. We can win elections if enough people spend time making phone calls and knocking on doors. But if we as peace people are too busy for those tasks, then the elections will always go to those with influential connections or lots of money for advertising. Second, we need to elect Keith in order to repudiate the racism of the attack campaign against him. Many of you have read the smears in the Star Tribune, with lightly coded references to bow ties (like Louis Farrakhan) and "looming but silent black men in suits." Fundamentally, Keith has been attacked because he is a Muslim and because he is black. Even if Keith were not a truly exceptional candidate, it would still be crucial for us to take racism off the campaign toolkit. It has no place in Minnesota politics in 2006. Third, Keith Ellison is the sort of outstanding candidate that I have rarely seen in my lifetime. I know he is a peace candidate because I have seen and heard him at many marches and vigils. I know he is a social justice advocate, because I have seen the long list of successful legislation he has sponsored in the Minnesota House. I know he is a positive, even-tempered individual because I have known him for several years and seen him in some tense situations. Keith combines a huge personal warmth with keen sense of justice. He is exactly the sort of congressman that the Republicans do not want in Washington. Apparently, some more conservative Democrats also fearful of Keith's strong voice, since he has three extremely well-financed challengers. HOW YOU CAN SUPPORT KEITH YOU COULD ATTEND A DEBATE To support Keith or just to learn more about his positions, you could attend a debate among the candidates for House. One will be held between 11 and noon on Monday, July 24, at the Midtown Global Market, Lake Street and Chicago Avenue in South Minneapolis. Another debate will be held between 7:30 and 9:00 p.m on Tuesday, July 25, at Temple Israel, 2324 Emerson Avenue South, Minneapolis. YOU COULD MAKE PHONE CALLS Right now, volunteers are making voter I.D. calls, finding out who supports Keith and who might be persuaded. It's extremely easy, with a short and simple script to use for the calls. You could sign sign up and work with friends. Hours are Sunday between 1 and 6, as well as Monday through Thursday from 5:30 to 8:45. You can contact trayvolunteers [at] keithellison.org to make whatever phoning commitment you can. Currently many calls are being made from the Central Labor Union building, but new locations will open up as more people volunteer. YOU COULD DO DOOR-KNOCKING FOR KEITH My own Senate District has two door-knocks scheduled for this weekend. On Saturday, we will be leaving from the home of MN Rep. Jim Davnie, 2741 - 39th Avenue South, and working from 3 to 6 p.m. On Sunday, we will work from 3:30 to 6:30 from the home of MN Rep. Jean Wagonius, 4804 - 11th Ave South. You can find out about either of these events by writing annfriedrich [at] yahoo.com The campaign office probably knows of other door-knocks in other parts of the city. Call them. YOU COULD VOTE There are now less than eight weeks until the September 12th primary. If Keith wins the primary, he is likely to be our next Representative in Washington. Normally primaries are poorly attended. Who do you want to make that choice for you? If you want Keith as a voice for peace, mark the date on your calendar and plan on voting, along with your favorite peacenik friends. It makes a huge difference. YOU COULD SEND MONEY Call the office or donate through the website. It is not tax-deductible, but it will certainly mean that more of your tax money will go to peace, people and the environment, and less to war. Every bit helps. BUT, WAIT. THERE'S MORE! The website is www.keithellison.org The phone number is 612-522-4416. The campaign headquarters is at 2200 Minnehaha Avenue South, Minneapolis. IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS, I would also be more than happy to try my best. E-mail me or call me at 612-722-1545. But please try to find some time for this campaign. Really, it is crucial. Peace, Charley Underwood
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