Archive for the ‘Press Release’ Category

Sign Up for Message Training with Drew Westen on Jackson Day

Friday, September 23rd, 2011

Values-based Strategy: Message Training for Tennessee Democrats

By popular demand, Democratic messaging expert Drew Westen is coming back to Tennessee.

If you’re frustrated with the Republican noise machine and want the skills to change the story, then join us next Saturday.

October 1st —before Jackson Day— the TNDP will host a Drew Westen messaging workshop in Nashville!

A three-hour interactive training for candidates, party leaders and organizers

1 p.m. – 4 p.m., Saturday, October 1st
Martin Luther King Academic Magnet School
613 17th Avenue North
Nashville, TN 37203

APPLY NOW!

Tuition is $50**, and all participants will receive great resource materials to take with them.

Throughout his 20-year career as a political consultant, Drew Westen has trained members of Congress, major progressive organizations and even worked with the president.

This training will offer a unique opportunity to learn basic values-based strategy skills such as framing and effective message development. Westen’s hands on, interactive approach will help you incorporate your values into your organizing and campaign strategy.

This training is guaranteed to fill up fast.

APPLY NOW.

**NOTE: The workshop is FREE to ANY elected Democratic official, County Democratic Party chair or state Executive Committee member. If you are an elected official, county chair or executive committee member, please click here to RSVP online for the FREE training.

For more information, contact Brandon@TNDP.org or by phone at (615) 327-9779.

 

 

More exciting news about our Jackson Day Dinner October 1st

Wednesday, September 21st, 2011

We’re thrilled to announce the addition of former Ohio Governor Ted Strickland to next weekend’s Jackson Day Dinner.

Strickland is a lifelong advocate for working and middle class families. He has recently been at the forefront of the grassroots fight to defeat Ohio’s Senate Bill 5, a measure that — similar to the Republican attacks on Tennessee teachers — would severely limit the collective bargaining rights of schoolteachers, police officers and firefighters.

Governor Strickland’s remarks add to an already great program featuring a salute and celebration of our state’s 46th Governor entitled, “The People’s Governor: A Tribute to Ned McWherter.”

The tribute features an address from the legendary John Seigenthaler.

We’re just days away…If you haven’t already purchased tickets to the Party’s “who’s who” event of the year, now’s the time to do so!

The Jackson Day Dinner will be held Saturday, October 1 at the Bicentennial Mall in Nashville.  Doors open at 6 p.m. with the program starting at 7:30 p.m.

For more information or to RSVP, please contact the Tennessee Democratic Party at (615) 327-9779 or visit www.JacksonDay.org.

TNDP: Strengthen Our Fiscal House By Putting Tennesseans Back to Work

Wednesday, September 14th, 2011

NASHVILLE — State Democratic Party Chairman Chip Forrester urged Tennessee’s top Republicans to consider a jobs plan to keep the state’s fiscal house in order.

“The surest way to strengthen our state’s fiscal house is to put 300,000 Tennesseans back to work. If Ron Ramsey and Governor Bill Haslam put half the effort they expend wooing big corporate donations into a common sense jobs plan, Tennessee would get there a lot faster.”

Forrester pressed Gov. Bill Haslam and Senate Speaker Ron Ramsey for action on the state’s job crisis in statement Wednesday following the Republicans’ meeting with Wall Street bond rating agencies.

“This bond rating dog and pony show for Wall Street executives looks obnoxious to the 300,000 Tennesseans who are struggling to find work and provide for their families,” Forrester said. “They’d like to see a day where the numbers we brag about are Tennessee’s low unemployment rate and high economic output.

“There’s no doubt Wall Street was impressed with Governor Haslam’s contingency plan to fire 5,000 workers and eliminate crucial services that keep families healthy, children educated and the disabled properly cared for. However, Tennesseans who’ve seen this extreme plan are not so enthusiastic,” Chip Forrester said. “Haslam’s slash-and-burn budget would send our state into an even more severe economic tailspin and prompt a societal crisis that would diminish the quality of life for every Tennessean.”

This summer Gov. Haslam instructed state department heads to plan for 30 percent budget cuts to be enacted if Tennessee receives less federal funding.

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House, Senate Dems announce statewide jobs tour Sept. 19-24

Tuesday, September 13th, 2011

Tennessee’s House and Senate Democratic Caucuses announced Wednesday that their members will embark on a six-day tour across the state Sept. 19-24 to talk to business owners, local officials and the public about how to best grow jobs in Tennessee. 

“Across the country and here in Tennessee, we are stuck in a jobs crisis, and it’s going to take everyone working together to get us out of it,” said House Democratic Leader Craig Fitzhugh. “Jobs are the number one priority for Tennesseans, and they also must be the top priority for their elected officials.”

Members will begin the tour Monday, Sept. 19, in Memphis, with stops throughout rural and urban areas across the state (see schedule below). The tour will end Saturday, Sept. 24, in Putnam and Smith Counties.

The unemployment rate in Tennessee currently sits at 9.8 percent, meaning more than 306,000 Tennesseans are looking for jobs and can’t find one. County unemployment rates are as high as 19.8 percent.

“People want their lawmakers to do something to combat the unemployment crisis, especially in rural areas that have been hit the hardest,” said State Senator Eric Stewart. “There’s a lot we can learn from going out there and listening to the people who are creating jobs, as well as the people who are looking for jobs.”

The tour will include several discussions and events open to the public, as well as daily press briefings and updates through traditional and social media. Members participating on the tour have pledged to use the feedback they receive on the tour to draft legislation directly addressing job growth throughout the state.

“The tour is our opportunity to listen, gather ideas and make decisions on what we can do as a state legislature to promote jobs in Tennessee,” Fitzhugh said. “We hope it will mark the beginning of a sustained focus on jobs and economic growth from all of our elected officials as we enter the next legislative session.”

————————-
Day 1 (Monday, Sept. 19): Corporate Partnerships Day (Shelby & Haywood) 

  • 8 a.m. Kickoff at the University of Memphis with Corporate Jobs Roundtable
  • 1 p.m. Tour of West Tennessee Megasite with Mayor Franklin Smith
  • 2 p.m. Tour of West Tennessee Solar Farm with Mayor Franklin Smith

Day 2 (Tuesday, Sept. 20): Small Business Day (Madison & Weakley)

  • 8 a.m. – 10 a.m. Drop-ins at small businesses in Madison County
  • Noon – 2 p.m. Drop-ins at small businesses in Weakley County

Day 3 (Wednesday, Sept. 21): Technical Jobs Day (Rutherford & Maury)

  • Morning: Tour of Nissan LEAF Plant in Rutherford County
  • Noon – 2 p.m. Technical Jobs Roundtable at Columbia State Community College
  • 2 p.m. – 4 p.m. Drop-ins at Maury County small businesses

Day 4 (Thursday, Sept. 22): Green Jobs Day (Warren & Hamilton)

  • 7 a.m. Breakfast at Tennessee State University Nursery Research Center in McMinnville
  • 8 a.m. Meet with nurserymen and tour Otis Floyd Research Center
  • Noon: Tour of Chattanooga State Community College
  • 1 p.m. – 4 p.m. Tour new energy businesses in Chattanooga

Day 5 (Friday, Sept. 23): Research/Education Jobs Day (Knox)

  • 8 a.m. Breakfast with Councilmember Brenda Palmer and small business owners
  • 10 a.m. Business Round Table at the Chamber of Commerce
  • Noon – 2 p.m. Drop-ins at small businesses in Knox County
  • 2 p.m. – 4 p.m. Meet w/Piper Communications to discuss growing the clean energy sector

Day 6 (Saturday, Sept. 24): Ecotourism Jobs Day (Putnam & Smith)

  • 8 a.m. Breakfast at Dipsy Doodle in Putnam County
  • 10 a.m. – Noon: Drop-ins at small businesses in Cookeville
  • 1 p.m. – 3 p.m. Tour of Catesa Farms in Smith County

 

Tennessee Democratic Caucus: House, Senate Dems announce statewide jobs tour.

TNDP Chair: GOP Lawmakers ‘Out of Touch with Reality’

Friday, September 9th, 2011

1-in-10 hunting for jobs—Republican lawmaker says Tennessee ‘too easy’ on job seekers
NASHVILLE — Tennessee Democratic Party Chairman Chip Forrester called out Republican lawmakers Thursday for being “out of touch with reality” on growing the state economy and assisting Tennessee’s 300,000 job seekers.
“We don’t have a shortage of work ethic in Tennessee, we have a shortage of work. We have roads and bridges to fix, safe energy to harness, and schools to rebuild,” Forrester said. “Instead of playing politics and mocking people who have lost their jobs by no fault of their own, Republicans should want to work with Democrats in finding ways to make Tennessee work again for Tennesseans.”
In August, Wacker Chemie, a Germany-based company that former Gov. Phil Bredesen recruited to set up in Bradley County, reportedly accepted 10,000 applications for 130 positions.
Forrester’s statement comes after a comment made Thursday by Republican state Rep. Jimmy Matlock. Matlock said Tennessee’s 306,000 job seekers weren’t actually looking for work because they have no incentive to find a job.
“We’re making it too easy,” Matlock said in reference to the extension of jobless benefits for the long-term unemployed.
In Tennessee, the maximum unemployment insurance benefit is $1,100 a month or less. That’s at the poverty line.
“The truth is Tennesseans want to work, and Democrats won’t rest until every Tennessean who wants to work has a job,” Forrester said. “Irresponsible comments like the one from Mr. Matlock just reaffirm how out of touch with reality Republicans have become.”
On Wednesday Democratic members of the state House and Senate announced a six-day jobs tour across the state Sept. 19-24 to talk to business owners, local officials and the public about how to best grow jobs in Tennessee.
Senate Republican Leader Mark Norris accused his Democratic colleagues of using the tour for politics.
“That’s a rich accusation coming from Sen. Norris considering his party killed a dozen Democratic jobs bills this year and did absolutely nothing on their own to grow the economy,” Forrester said. “Sen. Norris and Gov. Bill Haslam are obviously waiting for Santa to leave jobs under the tree this Christmas.
“Republicans continue to sit on their hands and call it ‘leadership,’” Forrester said. “It’s past time Republicans stopped complaining about the government, and started focusing on running it well.”

FACTS: Plenty of work ethic, not enough work
  • In Bradley County, Wacker has received 10,000 applications and made 130 hires. [Chattanooga Times Free Press, 8/17/11]
  • In Knox County, 700 students attend a jobs fair at UT Knoxville [Daily Beacon, 8/26/11]
  • In Robertson County, 400 people turned out for a job fair [NewsChannel5.com, 8/17/11]
  • In Hamilton County, Amazon.com received 4,300 applications in two days. [Memphis Business Journal, 5/18/11]
  • In Rutherford County, 800 people apply for teaching positions. [Daily News Journal, 5/15/11]
  • In Knox County, Jobs News’ drew more than 1,400 job seekers. [WVLT, 5/4/11]
  • In Tullahoma, 60 people applied for 10 jobs — at McDonalds. [Tullahoma News & Guardian, 4/28/11]
  • In Montgomery County, “thousands of people” attend a two-day job fair in Clarksville. [The Leaf-Chronicle, 4/28/11]
  • In Shelby County, more than 20,000 job-seekers applied over 14 days to work at a brewery that plans to hire 500 workers over the next five years. [The Memphis Commercial Appeal, 4/13/11]
Tennessee’s unemployment rate is 9.8%
That’s higher than the national average. 306,200 Tennesseans are still looking for jobs. [BLS.gov, 9/8/11]
RHETORIC: Tennessee Republicans eager to abandon and mock people who’ve lost their jobs.
Rep. Jimmy Matlock: “We’re making it too easy.” [Memphis Commercial Appeal, 9/8/11]
Rep. Glen Casada: “I would contend the answer to that is it’s up to individuals to help their family and their friends and neighbors who don’t have a job.” [Chattanooga Times Free Press, 5/20/11]
Rep. Tim Wirgau: “We got people who can’t find jobs, but we got more people who don’t look for jobs because we keep handing them money.” [Chattanooga Times Free Press, 5/20/11]

Republican Plan for the Economy: Higher Unemployment for Tennessee

Wednesday, September 7th, 2011
New analysis shows extreme plan endorsed by Sen. Corker, GOP presidential front runners would cost Tennessee 184,569 jobs

NASHVILLE—In advance of tonight’s GOP presidential debate in California, the Tennessee Democratic Party released a new estimate of the number of jobs which would be lost in Tennessee if the Republican Party’s presidential candidates and U.S. Sen. Bob Corker are able to pursue their extreme economic policies.

The analysis conducted by the Democratic National Committee found that just the balanced budget amendment, like the one included in the Tea Party budget plan passed by the U.S. House of Representatives this summer, would result in the loss of 9.5 million American jobs and 184,569 jobs in Tennessee.

The loss of so many jobs would likely sink the economy into a depression the likes of which the country hasn’t experienced since the Great Depression. Sen. Corker and every Republican presidential candidate has come out in favor of a balanced budget amendment to the constitution or supported the Tea Party budget plan which contains one.

TNDP Chair Chip Forrester released this statement:

“9.5 million American jobs lost and 184,569 jobs lost here Tennessee, a second Great Depression, devastation for the middle class, small businesses, students and seniors, an end to Medicare, and a slashed Social Security — that’s the Republican plan for our economy.

“There’s no question we need to get our fiscal house in order and get the economy moving, but the price Mitt Romney, Rick Perry, Michele Bachmann and Sen. Bob Corker are willing to pay to appeal to the most extreme and narrow elements of the Tea Party is too high – especially for Tennesseans.

“The Republican approach is like setting dynamite to your home to fix a leaky faucet — and these misguided choices are the result of a Republican Party which has turned over an increasing amount of power to its Tea Party fringe.

“Americans want real solutions to the problems we face and they want a plan to create jobs in the short term and lay a foundation for long-term economic prosperity. What Republicans are proposing falls devastatingly flat on all fronts.”

The new analysis looked at the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office’s (CBO) August deficit projections for 2012 ( $991 billion deficit with CBO options for Iraq drawdown, extension of all tax provisions and Alternative Minimum Tax indexing and accounting for the so-called “Doc” fix), and using the conservative Romer-Bernstein rule of thumb that 1 percent of GDP equates to 1 million jobs, concluded that if the plan were fully phased in 2012 and nearly a trillion dollars in federal spending was slashed, the balanced budget amendment would cost 9.5 million jobs nationwide.

Because of the balanced budget amendment’s strict requirements for deep cuts, hard spending caps and a two-thirds majority to raise revenue, Congress would be virtually helpless to reverse the negative effects of these Tea Party Republican policies.

BACKGROUND:


Corker Praises House for Passing Cut, Cap, and Balance, Calls on Senate to Do the Same. [Corker.Senate.gov, 7/21/11]

Happy Labor Day

Monday, September 5th, 2011

As we celebrate Labor Day this weekend, the Tennessee Democratic Party is also preparing for Jackson Day 2011.

This year’s Jackson Day will be a historic celebration of the life and accomplishments of Governor Ned McWherter.

Please join us in Nashville on Oct. 1st as we salute a governor who went to work for working families.

Click here to purchase tickets.

Labor Day also reminds us that this has been a difficult year for working families with extreme, corporate-backed attacks against workers taking place around the country — and right here in Tennessee. These attacks on the American middle class show us exactly how important our work is.

We’re fighting for all Tennesseans. Our victories — like the 40-hour work week and the creation of a broad middle-class — have improved the quality of life for all Americans. And our shared prosperity has always been opposed by the power elite.

That’s why we want you at Jackson Day.

Folks like Ned McWherter, who understood the value of hard work, pulled together and set our state down a different path. Now it’s time for us to pull together and carry on that legacy.

Click here to purchase tickets for Jackson Day 2011. Your ticket purchase will provide crucial support to candidates who believe in creating opportunity for everyone.

We are standing up to billionaires and politicians who attacked Tennessee teachers and union workers. We are fighting for investments in our children’s futures, our schools, and our roads and bridges. We are fighting for good American jobs, wages and benefits that should come with a hard day’s work.

And we need you to join us Oct. 1 in Nashville to keep this movement growing. Click here to purchase tickets.

Thank you for everything you do and have a happy Labor Day.

Host a Values Summit House Party

Monday, July 25th, 2011

 

This spring, something special happened in Jackson at the Tennessee Values Summit. Democrats and progressive leaders from across state came together to discuss our core beliefs and plan a way forward.

The Values Summit was only the beginning. We want to continue this conversation in your community.

So we are looking for volunteers to host a Tennessee Values Summit House Party in their city and take action on issues that are important to us.

On August 6th and 7th, the Tennessee Democratic Party is asking you to join us and organize a Values Summit House Party in your community.

At dozens of gatherings across the state, participants will view portions of the Values Summit, including a DVD of Dr. Drew Westen, a political communications guru who will teach you how to more effectively speak about your Democratic values.  Following the screening, guests will begin planning steps for taking action in their communities to share those Democratic values with friends and neighbors.

We need a place for folks to gather in your community—can you host a party? It’s really simple, and we will give you step-by-step instructions and everything you need to host a successful meeting.

Click here to sign up to host an event:

Yes, I want to host a house party.

House parties are a fun way to get organized, and they’re very simple. Choose a time on August 6th or 7th when you can open up your house for a gathering. (You could also borrow a friend’s house—or reserve a free public space like a library community room—if your home isn’t a good location for people to gather.)

We will help you invite other Tennessee Democrats, and provide the materials you need to make your house party a success.

We need places all over Tennessee for people to get together so other local folks can be part of the Values Summit. Can you host a party? Click here:

Yes, I want to host a house party.

Thank you for your hard work,

Chip Forrester
Chairman, Tennessee Democratic Party

Welcome to Crazytown

Thursday, July 21st, 2011

CrazytownRemember “Dollar” Bill Ketron and his plan to set up a Tennessee state currency? [Tennessean, March 1]

How about the Tennessee GOP’s new spokesman? Disgraced actor Charlie Sheen, a known abuser of drugs and women. [Nashville Scene, April 29]

Welcome to Crazytown.

Since the beginning of the year, Republican politicians have made no secret of their plans to hand over our state and our democracy to big corporations while sending working- and middle-class families down the Tennessee River.

Sadly, you could overlook the extreme agenda and Tennessee’s Republican politicians would still give you plenty of reasons to scratch your head.

From desk carvers and communist lovers to lunch dates with radical governors and allegations of political corruption, the Tennessee GOP has got it all:

  • GOPer Speaker Beth Harwell giddy for radical Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker. Walker attacked the rights of Wisconsin workers and families, passed an undemocratic voter ID bill, and gave tax breaks to the rich and big corporations. Considering Beth Harwell accomplished many of the same things, no wonder, in a tweet, she called him “one of our best Republican governors.” [Beth Harwell Twitter, June 29]
  • Tennessee GOP gaga for Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels at big, corporate fundraiser. How do you get Tennessee Republicans to fawn over you? Write a budget plan that crashes the U.S. economy, voice your strong support of privatizing Social Security and slash millions in funding for public schools. Naturally, Republican lawmakers lauded Daniels’ destructive record at a high-dollar fundraiser last week. [TN Report, May 18]
  • State representatives caught in TBI investigation with naughty nurses. The Kingsport Times News reported three suspended nurse practitioners accused of contributing to two patients’ deaths somehow got their licenses restored. State Rep. Tony Shipley told the paper, he’s the “rascal behind the scenes that made it happen.” [WPLN, July 20]
  • Desk-carving GOPer grabs national headlines. Back in Nashville, state Rep. Julia Hurley carved her initials in her desk on the floor of the state House. She said she was bored during a late session and said, “I wasn’t thinking straight.” Unfortunately, her voting record against teachers and Tennessee families showed us that all year. [News Sentinel, July 11]
  • Out-of-touch Obion County Republican praises communist China’s government-run economy within a day of 1,900 factory workers in his hometown losing their jobs through no fault of their own. Rep. Bill Sanderson, on a trip to China, marveled at the “smooth and efficient” Chinese government. Impressed by the government-run economy, the Republican said China has “taken what we do and are now doing it better.” Yes, Mr. Sanderson, the Chinese are taking what we are doing, like the 1,900 jobs at the Goodyear plant in Union City. But Mr. Sanderson, they will never do it better than Americans. [Bill Sanderson Blog, July 11]

Republican politicians may be proud of their party’s scandals, embarrassing gaffes and out-of-touch policies, but Tennesseans aren’t laughing.

We are looking to add 100 new grassroots donors for the month of July.  Click here to help today with a gift of $5 and show your support for returning to common sense and effective leadership in Tennessee.

It’s time to shutdown Crazytown.  With your help, we can do it.

Thanks for all you do,

Chip Forrester
Chairman, Tennessee Democratic Party

 

Are Republicans Trying to Sabotage the Economy?

Friday, June 24th, 2011

Bob Corker, Lamar Alexander, Phil Roe, Jimmy Duncan, Chuck Fleischmann, Scott DesJarlais, Diane Black, Marsha Blackburn, and Stephen Fincher need to stop playing politics with our nation’s economy.

From the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee:

It sure looks like Republicans are trying to sabotage the economy for political gain. You might think that sounds like a tin foil hat conspiracy theory until you consider this: Republicans are now opposing measures to boost the economy that they previously have supported. Even TAX CUTS.

Here’s what Sen. Chuck Schumer said Wednesday about Republican opposition to a payroll tax cut to boost hiring:

“It’s pro-business, it’s a tax cut, and many Republicans have been for it in the past. But now all of a sudden they’re coming out against it. … Would Republicans really oppose a tax cut for business that created jobs? This is sort of beyond the pale. So if they’d oppose even something so suited to their tastes ideologically, it shows that they’re just opposing anything that would help create jobs. It almost makes you wonder if they aren’t trying to slow down the economic recovery for political gain.”

Why would Republicans do such a thing? Because they’re more interested in getting re-elected – and getting President Obama out of the White House – than they are in helping the economy get moving again. They’re more interested in their jobs than your jobs. It’s that simple. And we’re calling them out.

With unemployment rising in Tennessee, now is not the time to put party before country. Our lawmakers should stand up for working people and our state’s middle class by supporting common sense tax relief to grow our economy.