People For the American Way



In This Issue

SPOTLIGHT: PFAW Mourns the Loss of Sen. Edward Kennedy

Health Care Hostilities Result From Right's Declaration of War on Obama

DOJ Acknowledges Opposition to DOMA, At the Same Time Defends It

CIA Torture Investigation Announced But More Is Needed to Restore Justice

YEO Network Frontline News

Sotomayor Confirmed

--Featured Video


The Equine Posterior Achievement Award

EPAA Dobbs

July's winner: Lou Dobbs

See why he won and read about this month's nominees. Then, VOTE!

Read More & Vote more

New Book by Young Elected Official Maps a Course to Progressive Victories

Unite and Conquer

AZ State Rep. Kyrsten Sinema is an active member of PFAWF's Young Elected Officials Network. In 2006 she led a successful campaign to defeat a same-sex marriage ban, and in 2008 she ran Project Arizona's Freedom, which kept an anti-equal opportunity initiative off the ballot. Now she shares the lessons learned from these campaigns in a new book to help progressives form and keep winning coalitions.

If you're in the Washington, DC area, meet Rep. Sinema at a local book signing on Sept. 8.

Buy the Book


PFAW Mourns the Loss of Sen. Edward Kennedy

Ted Kennedy

A great sadness has settled over millions of Americans who counted on Ted Kennedy to champion the values of freedom, fairness and opportunity.

PFAW awarded Sen. Kennedy the Defender of Democracy Award in 1998. For his entire life, he was a steadfast ally on issue after issue for which we've fought.

His voice is stilled, but his legacy lives on.

Read More >


Health Care Hostilities Result From Right's Declaration of War on Obama

Herr Obama

The latest Right Wing Watch In Focus examines how the Religious Right has joined industry, right-wing media and GOP officials in anti-Obama propaganda campaigns.

Vituperative attacks on Democratic-led efforts to reform the nation's health care system reflect right-wing leaders' strategic decision to do everything in their power to destroy the Obama presidency. The disruptions at congressional town hall meetings by angry, misinformed mobs are the result of an opportunistic coalition of convenience between deep-pocketed corporate opponents of reform, Religious Right leaders who see opposition to Obama as a religious duty, right-wing media outlets eager to use any bludgeon at their disposal to weaken the Obama administration, and Republican officials all too eager to play along in hopes of strengthening their political position.

Read More >

DOJ Acknowledges Opposition to DOMA, At the Same Time Defends It

Dump DOMA sq - 131px

Earlier this month, the Department of Justice filed a brief in the case Smelt v. United States, which challenges the constitutionality of the so-called Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA).

The brief acknowledges that DOMA is discriminatory and that the Obama administration supports its repeal. But it disappointingly continues the administration's contention that the discrimination in DOMA does not raise serious constitutional concerns.

We must challenge the president to work with Congress on a clear road map to achieving equal justice for all people. And we must challenge Congress not to wait for the president, and to show some leadership in the much-needed repeal of DOMA.

Act Now to Dump DOMA >

Join Our Dump DOMA Facebook Group >

CIA Torture Investigation Announced, But More Is Needed to Restore Justice

Last week, Attorney General Eric Holder announced he'd appoint a prosecutor to examine nearly a dozen cases in which CIA interrogators and contractors may have violated anti-torture laws. It's a step in the right the direction, but just a step nonetheless. The investigation looks to be very limited in scope. What about accountability for top Bush administration officials who authorized illegal policies (and then tried to cover them up)?

Because the only way to prevent the same abuse from occurring in the future is to make sure past misdeeds are punished, Congress needs to take bold action to make sure members of the last administration are held accountable. One of the most comprehensive proposals to date, H.R. 104 by Rep. John Conyers would establish a commission to ensure accountability for past abuses and protect civil liberties moving forward.

Read more about PFAW's Campaign to Restore Justice >

Sign the petition in support of H.R. 104 >

YEO Network Frontline News

YEO logo small

Check out the YEO Network's August newsletter to see how Young Elected Officials are independently impacting the fight for health care reform both in Washington and around the country.

Read More >

Sotomayor Confirmed

On August 6, by a vote of 68 to 31, the Senate confirmed Judge Sonia Sotomayor to the United States Supreme Court.

The confirmation of Sotomayor is a historic step for the nation and a triumph of the American way. The efforts by the NRA and the Far Right to sabotage her nomination failed badly. Republicans who followed the Right's lead and voted against her confirmation will come to find that they were on the wrong side of history. 

Read More >


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Barney Frank Calls Out Extremist, Anti-Reform Town Hall Protester

When U.S. Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA) was asked by a woman at a town hall meeting holding a sign with President Obama altered to look like Hitler why he supports the president's "Nazi policy" on health care reform, he responded, "On what planet do you spend most of your time?" He then called the comparison "vile, contemptible nonsense."

Watch >


Right Wing Watch: Obama's Firing Squad for Babies

New over-the-top videos from Randall Terry, set to music from Alice Cooper, Nine Inch Nails and Snoop Dogg, who must be thrilled to see their music used as the soundtrack to Terry's insanity.

Watch (really, Watch) >

Right Wing Watch: Anderson: Every Homosexual in the World is a Deviant Predator Who is out to Recruit Others Through Molestation and Rape

Alan Colmes interviewed Steven L. Anderson of Faithful Word Baptist Church who has recently achieved fame for his sermons preaching that gays are out to rape children in order to recruit them and declaring that the only way to stop them is to kill them.

Anderson did not back down.

Read More & Listen >

Right Wing Watch: The Right Turns Ezekiel Emanuel Into "Doctor Death"

Alex Koppelman has written a good piece on how Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel, healthcare adviser to President Obama and brother of White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel, has become, for the Right, the poster boy for the supposed push for "death panels" and mandatory euthanasia in healthcare reform legislation, despite the fact that, as Koppelman notes, he "opposes even voluntary euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide."

Read More >

A Historical Perspective on Right Wing Paranoia

In Sunday's Washington Post, historian and journalist Rick Perlstein offers up an insightful historical perspective on the teabaggers, birthers, and deathers who've been thrust to the forefront by the media, claiming to speak for all Americans in opposition to everything from health care reform to President Obama's citizenship.

One parallel: When the 1964 Civil Rights Act was introduced, opponents said that it would "enslave" whites. Those claims don't sound much nuttier than the allegations that a health care provision to help senior citizens who want to write a living will would actually have created "death panels."

Read More >

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