We’re launching a program to organize and train grassroots volunteers and we’re calling it Resistance Summer. Sign up today and we’ll send you information on Resistance Summer events, trainings, and how we can work together this summer (and beyond) to elect Democrats and push back against Donald Trump.
INDIANAPOLIS – Indiana Democrats are kicking off a program to organize and recruit volunteers across the state more than a year before the 2018 elections. The Resistance Summer program will capitalize on grassroots energy generated by Donald Trump’s controversial presidency and channel it into an effort to organize at the state and local level.
“We want to build on the energy that’s risen up since President Trump’s election,” said Indiana Democratic Party Chairman John Zody. “This is about investing in the folks across the state that want to make a difference in their communities right now. This program will provide the tools they need to turn that desire to make change into action and will ultimately pay dividends up and down the ballot next year – and for years to come.”
The Resistance Summer program is a nationwide Democratic Party initiative designed to bolster state parties by investing in local organizing projects over the summer. Since Donald Trump’s inauguration, there has been an explosion of grassroots activity opposing this administration’s controversial agenda, which prioritizes tax cuts for the rich over the needs of middle-class and working families. Trump’s attacks on working families have activated a broad coalition of Hoosiers eager to get engaged in the political process.
“Donald Trump’s divisive agenda deserves some credit for fueling this spike in civic engagement,” said Zody. “We’ve seen Hoosiers of all stripes step up to push back against Trump. Now it’s time to get organized and to keep focusing that raw energy into action. Indiana Democrats will be working to advance an agenda that improves the lives of all Hoosiers.”
The Indiana Democratic Party will work with local party organizations and other stakeholders across the state to hold events to recruit volunteers, register voters and inform Hoosiers about the issues and what’s at stake.
“Donald Trump is actively rigging the system against working families and in favor of the wealthiest Americans,” said Zody. “These issues couldn’t be more important. It is about the future of our country. It is about an economy that works for all Hoosiers, not just a wealthy few. We’re going to take that message to folks and have open and candid conversations about the future direction of our state and country.”
Sign up for Resistance Summer trainings and events here: indems.org/join
INDIANAPOLIS – Indiana Democratic Party Chairman John Zody issued the following statement after Statehouse Republicans blocked a Senate Democrat initiative to study paid family leave.
“More than 80 percent of Americans support it. 70 percent of Republicans support it. Those facts withstanding, Indiana Statehouse Republicans still just buried a simple study of paid family and medical leave. It’s just the latest example of the same stale politics of the last ten years. Governor Holcomb wants to chase 21st century jobs but the party he leads has policy priorities better suited for the 1950’s. Paid family leave is good for families, it’s good for businesses, but evidently, it’s too forward-thinking for Indiana Republicans. First-time parents deserve time to bond with their newborn. Families will need to care for sick loved ones or aging parents. These are facts of life and this was a chance for Indiana Republicans to prove to Hoosiers they had their eye on the issues that really matter. That hope ended with Thursday’s announcement.”
INDIANAPOLIS – Indiana Democratic Party Chairman John Zody issued the following statement after Secretary Betsy DeVos delivered a speech in Indianapolis calling for a nationwide voucher program.
“Today, President Trump and Secretary Betsy DeVos appeared to fire the opening shots in a burgeoning nationwide war on public education. We’ve seen this before, right here in Indiana. Indiana’s controversial private school voucher program has cost taxpayers hundreds of millions and even Republican Superintendent of Public Instruction Jennifer McCormick is questioning the program’s oversight, calling it “irresponsible.” Hoosier teachers, parents and students feel abandoned by Indiana Statehouse Republicans who tout the program, which siphons off critical funding for public schools. Follow the money and you’ll find the big winners: Betsy DeVos’ former pals in the for-profit school industry. The program has set off a wave of school closings and consolidations and doesn’t improve educational outcomes. Why then, is Betsy DeVos pedaling them nationwide? Indiana Democrats will keep up our fight for a quality public education for every Hoosier child.”
|INDIANAPOLIS – Indiana’s controversial $500 million private school voucher program is pitting Indiana Republicans against one another as questions about the program’s accountability mount. Republican factions in the Indiana House, Senate and Department of Education have taken up divergent positions on the future of the voucher program.
Republican Superintendent of Public Instruction Jennifer McCormick has been sharply critical of the program, saying: “We [Hoosier taxpayers] are spending $146 million [annually] on a program and not really reviewing it. That is irresponsible.”
Republicans in the state Senate bowing to years of concerted pressure from Democrats and public education advocates, included the amount allocated for the state’s controversial voucher program separate from taxpayer dollars directed to public schools in their budget. The move was viewed as a minor, but positive step toward more transparency for the program. House Republicans had other ideas, though. During closed-door budget negotiations, the separate voucher line-item was eliminated, and funding for vouchers once again comes directly from public school funding.
Republicans in the State House of Representatives have zero interest in shining more light on the performance of voucher schools receiving Hoosier taxpayer dollars. House Republicans’ most prolific privatization cheerleader, Rep. Bob Behning, has questioned the need for any voucher school accountability at all.
The Indianapolis Star exposed a voucher school receiving state funds that failed to pay its teachers and lacked heat and hot water. Responding to that story, Behning defended spending taxpayer dollars with no oversight: “I look at voucher schools, when it comes to financial issues, in a very similar way that I think the state should look at any vendor we do business with. If we receive services, we should give them a payment. How they handle that payment, as long as they’re not doing something illegal, is not in the state’s jurisdiction.”
This all taking place as research is accumulating that suggests students attending voucher schools are not seeing academic benefits. A study highlighted by the New York Times showed students participating in Indiana’s voucher program saw no gains in reading performance and lost ground in mathematics achievement.
And this while a river of campaign cash continues to flow from education privatization advocates to Hoosier Republicans.
This is the voucher minefield Governor Eric Holcomb is tasked with navigating. Growing exponentially and bleeding public funding that would otherwise benefit the vast majority of Hoosier students.
Indiana Democratic Party Chairman John Zody issued the following statement on Indiana’s controversial voucher program.
“Fueled by outside interests, the voucher program has successfully tapped into a well of taxpayer dollars, operating with little oversight. Pressure is mounting to shine more light on how Hoosiers’ hard-earned dollars are being spent and some in the Indiana Republican Party are feeling the heat. I agree with Superintendent McCormick, the Republican-led Legislature’s failure to provide proper oversight of the state’s voucher program is irresponsible. It’s an insult to Hoosier taxpayers and it sends a signal that Republicans put little effort into being good stewards of taxpayer dollars.”