Wanna know how obsessed with Dunkin Donuts New England is? Here’s a Dunks inside Storyland, a fairy tale themed amusement park in New Hampshire. Like you got all these story and nursery rhyme themed attractions then…a Dunkin Donuts.
If you’re as heavily invested in politics as I am (and I have a feeling you are), you also tend to spend a lot of time fixating on what’s happening in Washington. But in recent years, perpetual gridlock has kept Congress from even functioning properly, let alone taking innovative steps to rebuild our middle class.
In the meantime, the true battleground for the heart and soul of our country has shifted to the states, where we now face an uphill battle. Republicans – with the help of a massive, well-funded network of corporate-backed, radical right-wing organizations – have staged an unprecedented coup of state legislatures.
Right now, the GOP controls 68 of the 98 partisan state legislative chambers, more than they have in the history of their party. And they’re using that power to pass unpopular legislation that actively undermines the ability of middle-class families to make ends meet.
Democrats need to make a concerted effort to win in 2016 – and that’s where Democracy for America comes in. Since 2004, DFA has been focused on making the 50 State Strategy a reality, supporting Democratic candidates in every state running for every level of office. We have successfully helped elect 831 DFA-endorsed candidates running for everything from the local school board to the U.S. Senate – and we are setting ambitious goals again for the 2016 electoral cycle.
DFA wants to train and empower 25,000 volunteers by 2016 – the kind of grassroots army that could tip the balance for Democrats in hundreds of close elections nationwide. Will you help us make that goal a reality by chipping in $3 or more a month from now until Election Day?
It could get much worse if we don’t fight back now.
In 2020, voters will elect state lawmakers who will be responsible for redrawing districts all over the country – a fundamental driver of who will control Congress and state legislatures for the next decade.
That’s why we cannot let Republicans continue to out-organize us on the state level. Not only are we losing important policy battles that are moving these states backwards, but we are also missing out on the opportunity to build the bench of future leaders necessary if we are going to grow our power in Washington in the years to come.
Through the Purple to Blue Project, DFA is intentionally working to counteract the Republican takeover of state legislatures by identifying winnable states and pro-actively recruiting and endorsing candidates in those states who can help to tip the balance. In 2015, we’re working with candidates on the ground in places like New York, New Hampshire and Virginia to run winning campaigns and build progressive power – and we will expand the program again to include more states in 2016.
It’s no longer enough for Democrats to sit back and complain about Republican dominance in the states. It is time for us to take action – and I am proud to say that DFA is and will continue to be a trailblazer when it comes to implementing the 50 State Strategy.
The first week (of 16 weeks) of marathon training is complete! Of course training starts out easier and gets harder/longer as we go, but so far things are looking good.
Check out my schedule above- yellow means I’ve done it and pink means I rested (as for Wednesday, I rested and then made up for the skipped strength a later day in the week).
One of the toughest parts of training is going to be making time. Out of the 16 weeks ahead, I’m going to be out of town for about 5-8 of those weekends, meaning I will have to plan ahead on where and when I’ll be able to run.
This weekend I was up in New Hampshire for a friends wedding and got some route advice from the marathoner bride before heading up there. She gave me a 5 mile out and back to do so Saturday morning while our house of 18 was still asleep, I woke up at 7:45am to hit the trail. And wow, what a trail it was. I was told I’d be doing a run around a lake but actually I didn’t hit the lake until mile 4 and until then I was actually (unknowingly) running around a mountain. It was by far the hilliest run I’ve ever done in my life and my knees were feeling it. I think that Central Park is hilly and this was like Central Park times 10. The hills were way bigger and there were many more of them. My pace was slower than normal because of the hills and also I was nervous heading out as I haven’t done a 10 mile run in many many months. So when the run was finally over I was proud of myself for getting up early, getting it done and surviving all the hills.
Pictures from along the route: Me before starting the run, most of the run looked like picture 2 but then I finally hit the beautiful lake and was table to take in the views miles 4-6, plus I passed this beautiful house for sale along the lake at mile 5 (will someone buy this for me? thanks!).