Blogs

Oregon Progressive Party Demands End to $50 Million Windfall to Health Insurers

Demands that Oregon Legislature enact HB 3465 to apply $50 million in accumulated excess premium payments to Medicaid, not to insurance company bank accounts

In 2013 Oregon’s Affordable Care Act (ACA) reinsurance program was set up to offset any abrupt increases in consumer health care premiums during the first three years of the ACA. Under existing law, that fund simply expires on June 30, 2017, but it holds $50 million in excess premiums--money collected from individuals and businesses in premiums but not spent on providing health care. Unless the law is changed, state health officials say they will give the money back to the insurance companies--with no requirement that the insurance companies return any of the money to the individuals and businesses that paid the premiums.

State Rep. Cedric Hayden, R-Cottage Grove, has introduced HB 3465. The other chief sponsors are Knute Buehler (R) and Julie Parrish (R). Brad Witt (D) and three other Republicans are regular sponsors. The Democratic Leadership in the House has not scheduled any hearing or other action on the bill.

HB 3465 provides that the $50 million be applied to Oregon’s Medicaid budget rather than being paid to insurance companies. That is enough to fund care for 9,500 of Oregon’s neediest adults and children.

The Oregon Progressive Party implores the Democratic Leadership--Speaker Kotek and Senate President Courtney--to immediately move and pass HB 3465 and for Governor Brown to sign the bill.

Health insurance companies and others in the medical field are among the largest contributors of money to candidate campaigns in Oregon, giving over $6 million to Oregon candidates for state or local office in 2016 alone.

See the Eugene Register-Guard editorial in favor of HB 3465.

Big Pharma: Market Failure (Screeing)

Big Pharma: Market FailureBIG PHARMA is a powerful new documentary film on the impact of out-of-control drug prices on businesses and the U.S. economy, Congress' failure to deal with the crisis and how we might fix it. The film takes an in-depth look at how our dysfunctional pharmaceutical industry and how it is damaging our economy, hurting our businesses and negatively impacting the nation's health. CEO of MCS Industries and producer of Big Pharma: Market Failure will be present for Q &A following. Representative of Health Care for All Oregon will participate in Q &A.

Sponsored by Alliance for Democracy, Economic Justice Action Group of the 1st Unitarian Church, Oregon UU Voices for Justice, KBOO, American Sustainable Business Council, Business Leaders Transforming Healthcare and Oregonians for Affordable Drug Prices.

Date/Time:  Friday, June 9, 7 PM, Eliot Chapel, 1st Unitarian Church, SW 12th and Salmon, Portland Doors open at 6:30 PM.

Admission: Donation requested: $5-20; however, no one will be turned away for lack of funds.

We The People 2.0, The Second American Revolution

Documentary Screening
Friday, May 12, 7 PM, Eliot Chapel,
1st Unitarian Church,
SW 12th and Salmon, Portland

Admission:  Donation requested: $5-20; however, no one will be turned away for lack of funds.  Doors open on 6:30 PM

The documentary, presented by Tree Media and the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund (CELDF), tells the story of people across the U.S. who have faced decades of environmental assaults – such as oil trains, coal trains, pipelines, fracking, and sludging of farmland – and what they are doing about it.
These communities recognize that ecosystems at home and around the globe are collapsing under inherently unsustainable laws and governing structures – what many have called a ‘corporate state.’ They have come to understand that the system is stacked against them and the natural environment. The film shares how they are working with CELDF and organizing to stop these assaults in their own communities through rights-based laws, which ban the harms as a violation of the rights both of the communities and their ecosystems.

Screening will be followed by a panel discussion with Paul Cienfuegos, (http://paulcienfuegos.com) Portland based community-rights based activist, and Nancy Ward, Columbia County Sustainable Action For Green Environment.  (http://ccsage.org)

Sponsored by Alliance for Democracy, Economic Justice Action Group of the 1st Unitarian Church, Oregon UU Voices for Justice, KBOO

Multnomah County Decided to Defend Campaign Finance Reform Measure

After hearing from dozens of concerned citizens on April 13, the Multnomah County Commission decided instead to defend Measure 26-184 in court.

We congratulate the Commissioners for making this new decision.

Multnomah County Commission votes to throw campaign finance limits measure to courts

HONEST ELECTIONS MULTNOMAH COUNTY

For immediate release:
April 06, 2017

For more information, contact:

David Delk
davidafd@ymail.com
503-232-5495 
Moses Ross
moses@committowin.com
503-309-7985
Liz Trojan
liz@progparty.org
503-970-2069
 

Multnomah County Commission votes to throw voter-enacted campaign finance reform measure into the courts, without defending it

Today the Multnomah County Commission voted to throw the voter-enacted campaign finance reform Charter Amendment (Measure 26-184) into the courts, without defending it from any claims that is it not valid or constitutional.

Voters enacted Measure 26-184 by a count of 89% to 11%.

"Throwing the measure into court, without defending its validity or constitutionality, is certainly not implementing the will of the voters, who clearly demanded campaign finance reform," said David Delk of the Alliance for Democracy and Honest Elections Multnomah County, the group that spearheaded the campaign for Measure 26-184.

"The corporations and other donors can now challenge Measure 26-184 and not face a defense from the Multnomah County Attorney," noted Dan Meek, volunteer attorney for Honest Elections Multnomah County.

The measure amended the Multnomah County Charter to:

1. Requires that each Communication (defined) to voters related to a Multnomah County Candidate Election prominently disclose the five largest true original sources of funding (in excess of $500) for the Communication.

2. Limits contributions to support or oppose candidates for public office in Multnomah County elections to $500 per person or political committee.

3. Requires any entity that spends more than $750 per election cycle on independent expenditures to register as a political committee, which requires reporting of the sources of its funding.

4. Limits independent expenditures in any Multnomah County candidate race to:

  • $5,000 per individual
  • $10,000 per political committee, but only from contributions by individuals of $500 or less per year.

For more information: honest-elections.com info@honest-elections.com

Refinery Town, Big Oil, Big Money, and the Remaking of An American City

CoRefinery Town-sponsored by Oregon Progressive Party Refinery Town, Big Oil, Big Money, and The Remaking of an American City

A book by Steve Early

Meet and talk with author Steve Early on Sunday, March 19, 7 PM (doors open at 6:30 PM), First Unitarian Church, SW 12th and Salmon, Portland

The People vs. Big Oil; how a working-class company town harnessed the power of local politics to reclaim their community

Home to one of the largest oil refineries in the state, Richmond, California, was once a typical company town, dominated by Chevron. This largely nonwhite, working-class city of one hundred thousand suffered from poverty, pollution, and poorly funded public services. It had one of the highest homicide rates per capita in the country and a jobless rate twice the national average.

But in 2012, when veteran labor reporter Steve Early moved from New England to Richmond, he discovered a city struggling to remake itself. In Refinery Town, Early chronicles the fifteen years of successful community organizing that raised the local minimum wage, defeated a casino development project, challenged home foreclosures and evictions, and sought fair taxation of Big Oil. Here we meet a dynamic cast of characters—from ninety-four-year-old Betty Reid Soskin, the country’s oldest full-time national park ranger and witness to Richmond’s complex history; to Gayle McLaughlin, the Green mayor who challenged Chevron and won; to police chief Chris Magnus, who brought community policing to Richmond and is now one of America’s leading public safety reformers. Part urban history, part call to action, Refinery Town shows how concerned citizens can harness the power of local politics to reclaim their community and make municipal government a source of much-needed policy innovation

Admission: Donation requested: $5-20; however, no one will be turned away for lack of funds.

Sponsored by
Alliance for Democracy
Oregon Progressive Party
Economic Justice Action Group of the First Unitarian Church

GET BIG MONEY OUT OF OREGON POLITICS - first step

Get Big Money Out of Oregon Elections

Beginning now, the Oregon Progressive Party, Alliance for Democracy, Economic Justice Action Group and others have started gathering signatures on a measure to appear on the Nov 2018 Oregon ballot to allow limits on special interest money in Oregon elections.  Oregon is one of only four states with no limitations and has among the most expensive elections in the nation.

The measure would amend the Oregon Constitution and reads:

Oregon laws consistent with the freedom of speech guarantee of the United States Constitution may regulate contributions and expenditures (including transfers of money or resources) with the purpose or effect of influencing the outcome of any election.

Right now we are gathering 1000 valid Oregon voter signatures in order to turn this into the Secretary of State and get the official ballot measure signatures sheets. 

We Need Your Help! 

Contact David Delk, Chair, Oregon Progressive Party.  He will mail you signatures sheets.  .
      Just email him at davidafd@ymail.com, let him know how many sheets you want (10 signatures per sheet) and your contact info (mailing address, phone number and email address.  Or give him a call at 503.232.5495

Thanks for your help.

David e. Delk, Chair
Oregon Progressive Party

Demand that Obama pardon Snowden & commute Chelsea Manning's sentence

Both Edward Snowden and Chelsea Manning should be regarded as American heroes.

As a whistle blower, Snowden risked all by exposing the extent to which American rights and freedoms had been attacked by the NSA and other global surveillance programs. For that, he has lived in asylum in Russia now for over 3 and half years. The American government has filed, among others, two counts of violating the Espionage Act, each which carry a possible sentence of 10 years. President-elect Trump has called Snowden a traitor deserving execution. Rep. Mike Pompeo, Trump nominee for CIA Director, called for the death penalty for Snowden. and Sen. Jeff Sessions, Trump's nominee for Attorney General, strongly supports the death penalty as well. Edward Snowden does not deserve to live his life in exile. Pres. Obama should issue a pardon now so that he can come home.

Chelsea Manning also has served the nation well as a whistle blower and . . . .

Oregon Progressive Party Candidates and Measures Do Well

In the midst of the disaster of Trump triumph, our measures and candidates have done well.

A top priority was Multnomah County Measure 26-184, the campaign finance reform measure that passed by 89-11%. Chris Henry so far has 72,000 votes for State Treasurer (5% of the vote). His performance was needed for the Oregon Progressive Party to maintain its status as a recognized political party in Oregon for the next 4 years.

David Delk earned 7.3% of vote against Earl Blumenauer in Congressional District 3.
James Ofsink earned 14% in Oregon Senate District 21.
Sami Al-AbdRabhun earned 15% in Oregon House District 16.
Cynthia Hyatt earned 16% in Oregon House District 15.
Fergus McLean earned 10% in Oregon House District 7.

The above are all record high numbers for candidates of the Oregon Progressive Party.

We also cross-nominated some candidates who are affiliated with other parties.
Peter DeFazio (D) won easily in Congressional District 4.
Joe Rowe (PGP) earned 18% in Oregon House District 44.
Jill Stein (PGP) earned 2% for President.
Brad Avakian (D) earned 43% for Secretary of State but is 4 points behind Dennis Richardson (R) there.

Election Night Contacts

David Delk
delk@progparty.org
971-373-4222
Liz Trojan
liz@progparty.org
503-970-2069
Jason Kafoury
jason@progparty.org
202-465-2764

Chris Henry Addresses Crowd

Chris Henry, our candidate for Treasurer of Oregon, addresses crowd on October 23.

Oregon can save over $1 billion per year by creating a state bank, like North Dakota's, and cutting out the Wall Street vultures and their gigantic fees.  See Chris Henry for Treasurer.

Chris Henry, OPP candidate for State Treasurer

OChris Henryregon Progressive Party candidate, Chris Henry, discusses the need and benefits from the creation of a state public bank.  He also discusses the projected shortfall in the PERS system and says that the shortfall can be taken care of from the General Fund over a period of time, largely by cutting out the Wall Street middle men from Oregon's financial operations.  Much more at Chris Henry for Treasurer.

Brad Avakian, OPP candidate for Secretary of State

Brad AvakianOregon Progressive Party candidate Brad Avakian is interviewed by Oregon League of Women Voters.  We start this video when Brad talks about the need for Oregon to address money in politics, specifically how Oregon needs to implement limits on campaign contributions and, if need be, take those limits to the US Supreme Court in order to overturn Citizens United.  He also expresses his understanding that money is not speech and corporations are not people.

David Delk League of Women Voters Interview

David DelkOregon Progressive Party candidate for U.S. Congress, 3rd District of Oregon, is interviewed by the League of Women Voters Portland.  He discusses his reason for running against U.S. Rep. Earl Blumenauer who has supported "Free" trade agreements 74% of the time since coming to office 20 years ago.

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