January 14, 2013
One week from today, President Obama will be officially sworn in for his second term, and we hope you can join us for the festivities in Washington, DC. This email contains some important information if you are making the trip to our nation’s capital.
First, YDA is excited to host our official happy hour on Sunday, January 20 from 5:00 – 7:00 p.m. at Sixth Engine (438 Massachusetts Ave, NW). The event, “A Toast to the Future,” will celebrate the inauguration of President Obama and honor the newly elected Democratic members of Congress under the age of 40. Special guests will include Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) and Congressman Patrick Murphy (D-FL). Tickets are $30 in advance and $35 at the door.
Purchase your ticket to YDA’s Inauguration Happy Hour: A Toast to the Future
YDA is also tracking all of the youth related events taking place around Inauguration, as well as asking our members to participate in a day of service on Saturday, January 19. If you would like to receive the official Youth Guide to the Inauguration or more details on YDA’s service project in DC, please sign up here.
We all worked tirelessly to reelect President Obama in 2012, and next week is a chance to celebrate four more years of moving our country forward. I look forward to seeing many of you in DC!
Young Democrats of America
November 07, 2012
The Young Democrats of America congratulates President Barack Obama on his reelection as President of the United States.
“Last night’s election represents a major victory for the Millennial Generation, which once again established itself as a powerful political force across the country. Young people increased our share of the electorate during a year when the naysayers expected us to stay home,” said YDA President Rod Snyder. “President Obama achieved a 24 point victory among young voters by focusing on issues that matter most to us – job creation, access to affordable education, expansion of health care, and equality for all Americans. His first term in office and his 2012 presidential campaign are a testament that direct engagement with young people yields favorable political results.”
Over the past four elections – 2006, 2008, 2010 and 2012 – young people have become one of the most critical voting blocs within the Democratic Party, delivering large majorities to Democratic candidates during presidential and midterm cycles. The youth vote represented the margin of victory in a number of swing states for President Obama last night and will continue to be a key to victory for Democrats in future elections.
“The Young Democrats of America was proud to play a role in reelecting President Obama, increasing representation in the U.S. Senate and House, and achieving Democratic victories up and down the ballot. YDA stands by the hard work and dedication of our grassroots members who not only helped make success in 2012 possible but also changed the face of the American electorate forever,” said YDA Executive Director Emily Tisch Sussman. “Today, we celebrate this historic victory, but tomorrow we get back to work to improve our economy, create jobs, protect our people at home and abroad, and expand the American dream to all who wish to be a part of it. We will continue on the path to prosperity that President Obama has set for us – one that includes all Americans, not just a privileged few.”
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July 16, 2012
YDA President Rod Snyder responds to a column by George P. Bush and Brad Dayspring about young voters’ allegiances in 2012. Read the full text of Snyder’s letter to the editor here.
George P. Bush and Brad Dayspring, in their Opinion article, “Youth Not Served by the President” (POLITICO, July 10), demonstrated that they are out of touch with the thoughts and opinions of America’s young voters.
Young Americans have felt the burden of finding their footing in the aftermath of a global economic recession, worsened by the Bush administration’s reckless fiscal policies. President Barack Obama has led a steady recovery, but more work must be done. Mitt Romney and congressional Republicans, however, are rooting for failure — blocking key legislation and slowing the recovery for partisan gain…
June 28, 2012
Statement from YDA President Rod Snyder:
“The Young Democrats of America (YDA) praises the Supreme Court’s decision to uphold the Affordable Care Act, ensuring that tens of millions of Americans have access to basic health care. From this day forward, health care in the United States will be a right for all Americans, not a privilege for those who can afford it.
“While the political implications of today’s decision will be widely debated, it’s important to remember what this was really about. No one should die because they can’t afford health care. No one should go broke because they get sick.
“Since the passage of the Affordable Care Act, 3.1 million young Americans have health insurance through their parents’ plans, children can no longer be denied coverage because of pre-existing conditions, and you can no longer be penalized for simply being a woman.
“For many young people, today is a reminder of why we are involved in the political process. Elections have consequences. We elected a president in 2008 who was committed to addressing a broken health care system in the U.S. We fought alongside a Democratic Congress to pass a law in 2010 that extended coverage to tens of millions of Americans who were previously uninsured. And today we celebrate that the progress has been preserved by the Supreme Court.
“Republicans are vowing to repeal the Affordable Care Act if they control Congress and the White House next year. Now more than ever, YDA is committed to electing Democrats who will make certain that we never roll back the clock to a time when basic health care was a question of economic status. We will fight to ensure that our children grow up in a nation with a moral imperative to care for the sick. This is a fundamental value of our generation, and it is what’s at stake in this November’s election.”
June 15, 2012
President Vows to Keep Undocumented Children in United States – Will Block Deportations
WASHINGTON, D.C. (JUNE 15) - President Obama announced today that his Administration will end the deportation of undocumented children and students. The President’s move represents one of the boldest efforts to uplift the dignity of the estimated more than one million undocumented children and students who would benefit from this change in policy. As the President explained, “Effective immediately, the Department of Homeland Security is taking steps to lift the shadow of deportation from these young people. They are American in their hearts and in their minds, in every single way but one: on paper. This is the right thing to do.”
The Young Democrats of America enthusiastically stands by the President’s decision as the values represented in his decision allude to the most basic notion that we are our brother’s and sister’s keepers. YDA Democratic National Committeeman Francisco J. Domenech stated, “Yet again, President Obama has taken a courageous step forward in expanding the American Dream to people who have come to our shores looking for a chance to succeed.”
The decision by the Administration is one that demonstrates true leadership and the foresight to stand on the side of basic fairness. The policy change will impact those who came to the United States before the age of 16, have lived here continuously for at least 5 years and are currently in the country. They must be pursing an education, have graduated from high school, or be honorably discharged veterans of the Armed Forces. YDA Hispanic Caucus Vice Chair Eden Ramirez noted, “We are truly privileged to be able to witness such a historic announcement by a President who time after time demonstrates true leadership by doing the right thing by defending the best interests of the Hispanic Community and the American people as a whole.”
Most of those who will benefit from the policy change would have been able to seek relief under the DREAM Act. Unfortunately, the Republican House with the support of Mitt Romney has been blocking any real effort to reform our broken immigration system. YDA Treasurer Jonathan Padilla pointed out, “The DREAM Act represents commonsense reform that would have allowed those attending college or serving our nation in the military to remain in the country they call home. President Obama is committed to real reform and leadership, while Mitt Romney and the Republican Congress can’t even agree on what their immigration policy is going to be over the next 5 months.”
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April 04, 2012
“As the Republican Presidential Primary Circus continues, the American people are becoming less than amused by the politics and policies that Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum are advocating,” said YDA President Rod Snyder. “Facts are stubborn, and the facts of the politics and policies of the Republican frontrunners are that they are aimed at disenfranchising young Americans, women, minorities, and entire regions of our nation, while empowering very few. This is not the legacy of the America we have inherited or the legacy we should want to pass on to future generations.”
“Maryland, as a solid blue state, missed much of the excitement of the Republican primary and had a relatively quiet Primary Election Day as the Romney/Santorum battle was barely felt here with the candidates focusing their efforts elsewhere in the country”, said Young Democrats of Maryland President Erin Schurmann. “We were happy to once again vote for President Obama and reaffirm our support for our friend, U.S. Senator Ben Cardin. This fall, we’ll be defending the DREAM Act and marriage equality, as well. Maryland produced the most per-capita volunteer hours for President Obama and Democrats around the country in 2008. We’re determined to beat that number in 2012 and fight to keep our country in the hands of leaders who fight for better health care, a fair economy, a cleaner environment, and civil rights for all of its citizens.”
“The people of Wisconsin, Maryland, and Washington, DC know that the minority that have come to vote this evening are effectively doing so with one hand tied behind their back,” said YDA Executive Vice President Colmon Elridge. “Republican voters increasingly understand and their lack of enthusiasm are proof that their presidential candidates are not prepared to lead our nation and young voters especially understand that the Republicans have no vision to guide our nation into the future. These candidates want to play president. Barack Obama is President and has earned the opportunity to lead our nation for another four years.”
For more information on the Young Democrats of Maryland, please visit www.ydmaryland.org and more for information on the Young Democrats of America, please visit www.YDA.org.
March 22, 2012
Earlier today, YDA South Central Region Director John Gorczynski published a post on Burnt Orange Report in response to Mitt Romney’s statement that he doesn’t understand how young voters can support Democrats. John lays out more than a few good reasons why we’re sticking with President Obama and the Democrats:
Romney is right to fear the youth vote this November as a major obstacle in his attempt for the White House. In the last presidential election, Millennial Americans came out in force against the failed policies of a Republican president which led to the worst unemployment we’ve seen in our lifetime. While Romney made part of his fortune by acquiring companies, laying people off and then reaping the profit, young Americans are grateful for the $2 billion President Obama and the Democrats saw fit to invest in grants that make career training accessible to more people…
…The Millennial generation will vote in November for the party that values expanded educational opportunities, stands with hard-working American families, and refuses to turn its back on women and LGBT Americans. They will vote for Democratic candidates.
The full blog post can be read here.
March 14, 2012
The Young Democrats of America have released the following statement on the GOP Primaries held this evening in Alabama and Mississippi, as well as the Hawaii Caucus:
While the GOP Primary Circus continues to entertain political spectators, the policies advocated by the leading candidates for the Republican Presidential nomination are no laughing matter for the young men and women who are proud to call the South home.
“Whether it is Romney and his desire to fire not hire, Santorum with his belief that desiring educational opportunities equates to snobbery, or Gingrich who personifies fidelity only to hypocrisy, these candidates have come to the south to win a nomination, not offer a vision for leading America”, said YDA Executive Vice President Colmon Elridge, of Kentucky. “For too long the south has been bruised by politicians who advocate policies that leave us behind in terms of access to quality health-care, jobs, housing, and education. These candidates have figured out how to appeal to our fears, but know nothing of our aspirations, or the faith by which we work to make a better life for the future of our families and our communities”.
“While several GOP candidates have taken a sudden interest in Mississippi, none of them are offering a plan to help the poorest state in the nation”, said Young Democrats of Mississippi President Kate Jacobson. “We have one of the highest percentages of individuals with no health care coverage, one of the highest levels of assistance from the government in the state, and our education rankings continue to be at the bottom. By threatening to undo health care reform or proposing closing public schools, none of these candidates have a vision to move our country or Mississippi forward.”
“The Republican candidates are completely ignoring the interests and values of Alabama and America. While Alabama undergoes wrenching cuts to schools and health care for children, the Republicans talk of tax cuts for the wealthy”, said Alabama Young Democrats President Beau Butts. “At a time when the Youth of Alabama struggle to find a foothold in the workplace, Republicans talk of making college less affordable and hindering job creation. These are not the acts of people who share any commitment to the young people of Alabama of making the promise of America come alive for all.”
Outside of the south, Hawaii also held their caucus this evening.
“Hawaii’s young people still stand firmly behind President Obama, a keiki o ka ‘aina who has fought diligently to represent our interests in health care reform, college affordability, winding down the war in Iraq, and repealing Don’t Ask Don’t Tell”, said President of the Young Democrats of Hawaii Francis Choe. “The President’s re-election along with successful Democratic victories in all of Hawaii’s Congressional races this November will continue to chart a path for our nation in which we continue to strengthen our economy, protect our environment, improve education, and work toward equality for all.”
February 24, 2012
President Obama yesterday signed into law the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012. This bill extends the payroll tax cut and emergency jobless benefits for millions of Americans and more importantly gives relief to millions of Americans who were under threat to pay a heavy price for the inaction of Republicans in Congress more interested in their jobs than putting Americans, especially our generation back to work.
Much has been said of what $40 a paycheck means. Republicans have ridiculed our desire to protect $40 for young Americans who have just found work, for hardworking young families, protect the benefits of all Americans who find themselves out of work and in need of help. For all of their ridicule yesterday, the people still won!
The support for the extension of the payroll tax cuts and emergency jobless benefits means something more personal however. As a husband and as a father, I know, first hand the value of every dollar. From diapers, to formula, to even a date night, a collective $80 from Victoria and I means a great deal to our young family. And even for our present employment, should one of us lose our job, I want to know that as we have played by the rules and worked hard, my government and my community will stand up for me and my family, should we need it, not forever, but for a moment.
Yesterday was about our American community standing by and with our neighbor. The signing of this bill for young people was a confirmation of the dignity of our work by ensuring we have a little more to show for it and a confirmation that in tough times, we do not throw people under the bus, we, at our best lift one another up and for that we as young Americans first, and Young Democrats second, thank and applaud the President.
- Colmon Elridge is Executive Vice President of the Young Democrats of America
February 12, 2012
On Friday, President Obama reinforced his commitment to ensuring all women have access to no-cost contraception, regardless of where they are employed. Despite blistering attacks from Republicans in Congress and conservative pundits, the President refused to play political games with women’s health and stood firm in his commitment to provide access to birth control for those who want it. Women who work for employers that opt out of covering contraception can now go directly to their insurance companies at no cost.
Take a moment and sign your name to a petition thanking President Obama for his commitment to women’s health
For me, this issue is personal. When I was eighteen years old, I was diagnosed with a condition called Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) and prescribed birth control pills as treatment. Those pills were not just contraception, they were important preventative medication. I’ve been fortunate enough to afford my prescription, but not everyone is so lucky.
The New York Times recently told the story of another young woman with PCOS, a law student at Georgetown University who didn’t have insurance coverage for her medically necessary pills because the school didn’t offer contraception coverage in their insurance plans. With a cost of $100 per month, she had to stop taking her pills and eventually developed a large cyst on her ovary, which had to be surgically removed. Something like this could happen to me if I couldn’t afford my medecine, and it could happen to the millions of other women who take contraceptives for PCOS and other conditions like endometriosis and ovarian cancer.
Thankfully, President Obama understands how crucial it is for all American women to have access to no-cost birth control, and he stood up for this important medical benefit. So, please take a minute to sign our petition thanking the President for standing firm in the face of staunch opposition, and let him know that you support his commitment to ensuring all women have access to comprehensive health care. The President has our back, forging a solution that respects differences of opinion on birth control without sacrificing critical access to affordable contraception. Please take minute to let him know you have his back too.
Women’s Caucus Chair
Young Democrats of America