Activism

Many of our America at a Crossroads audience members have repeatedly asked what they can actually DO to help protect our democracy. We have researched and vetted a number of non-partisan, non-profit organizations that are immersed in issues aligned with JUDJ’s mission. Voting rights, voter suppression and other pro-democracy ideals lie at the heart of the organizations we have included below. In many cases, these organizations have volunteer opportunities, including internships and special opportunities for high school and college students. We encourage you to connect with and support these organizations and actively engaged in protecting our American democracy.

866OurVote is a national non-partisan election protection coalition working year round to ensure that voters have an equal opportunity to vote and have that vote count. We provide Americans from coast to coast with comprehensive information and assistance at all stages of voting – from registration to absentee and early voting, to casting a vote at the polls, to overcoming obstacles to their participation. Our volunteers provide voter information, document problems they encounter when voting and work with partners and volunteers on the ground to identify and remove barriers to voting.

Learn more about 866OurVote volunteer opportunities.

ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge’s mission is to foster civic culture and institutionalize democratic engagement activities and programs at colleges and universities, making them a defining feature of campus life. By recognizing colleges and universities for their commitment to increasing student voting rates, through its national awards program, ALL IN encourages higher education institutions to help students form the habits of active and informed citizenship, make democratic participation a core value on their campus, and cultivate generations of engaged citizens who are essential to a healthy democracy.

Learn more about registering your campus.

Anti-Defamation League is a leading anti-hate organization. Founded in 1913 in response to an escalating climate of anti-Semitism and bigotry, its timeless mission is to protect the Jewish people and to secure justice and fair treatment for all. Today, ADL continues to fight all forms of hate with the same vigor and passion. ADL is a global leader in exposing extremism and delivering anti-bias education, and is a leading organization in training law enforcement. ADL is the first call when acts of anti-Semitism occur. ADL’s ultimate goal is a world in which no group or individual suffers from bias, discrimination or hate.

Learn more about ADL and volunteer opportunities.

The Brennan Center for Justice at NYU School of Law is a nonpartisan law and policy institute that seeks to improve our systems of democracy and justice. We work to hold our political institutions and laws accountable to the twin American ideals of democracy and equal justice for all. The Center’s work ranges from voting rights to campaign finance reform, from ending mass incarceration to preserving Constitutional protection in the fight against terrorism.

Learn more about the Brennan Center for Justice. 

The California Center for Civic Participation is a non-partisan, non-profit civic education organization, engaging high school students by sparking their interest with exposure to real excitement of the democratic process. We believe that youth hold so much untapped and unlimited power to change their communities and their world and we exist to expose and nurture that power.

Learn more about the California Center for Civic Participation and volunteer opportunities. 

The Center’s mission is to promote an enlightened and responsible citizenry committed to democratic principles and actively engaged in the practice of democracy. The Center has reached more than 30 million students and their teachers since 1965.

The Center for Civic Education helps students develop (1) an increased understanding of the institutions of constitutional democracy and the fundamental principles and values upon which they are founded, (2) the skills necessary to participate as competent and responsible citizens, and (3) the willingness to use democratic procedures for making decisions and managing conflict.

Learn more about the Center for Civic Education.

The Center for Common Ground empowers under-represented voters through non-partisan voter registration and Get Out the Vote. It provide voter information through door knock canvassing, texting, phone-banking. It also provide free rides to the polls on Election Day.

Learn more about the Center for Common Ground and volunteer opportunities.

Center for Election Innovation & Research engages in cutting-edge work to build voter trust, increase voter participation, and improve the efficiency of election administration. Their work helps elections officials maintain accurate and complete voter lists and secure election technology infrastructure.

Learn more about Center for Election Innovation & Research.

Common Cause is a nonpartisan, grassroots organization dedicated to upholding the core values of American democracy. We work to ensure open, honest, and accountable government; to promote equal rights, opportunity, and representation for all; and to empower all people to make their voices heard as equals in the political process. Common cause works across four major issue areas: voting and elections; money and politics; ethics, transparency and government accountability; and media and democracy.

Learn more about Common Cause and the Common Cause Education Fund

Democracy North Carolina is a nonpartisan organization that uses research, organizing, and advocacy to strengthen democratic structures, build power among disenfranchised communities, and inspire confidence in a transformed political process that works for all.

Learn more about Democracy NC and volunteer opportunities. 

ElectionDay.Org engages businesses to provide resources and tools to promote voting within their organizations including information on how to register, voting methods, and relevant deadlines. 

Learn more about ElectionDay.Org.

Equal Justice Works creates opportunities for lawyers to transform their passion for equal justice into a lifelong commitment to public service. Equal Justice Works is a 501(c) (3) nonprofit organization and is the nation’s largest facilitator of opportunities in public interest law. Equal Justice Works brings together an extensive network of law students, lawyers, legal services organizations, and supporters to promote a lifelong commitment to public service and equal justice. The organization believes that a community of lawyers committed to public service can fulfill our nation’s promise of equal justice for all. Following their Fellowships, more than 85% of Equal Justice Works Fellows remain in public service positions, continuing to pursue equal justice for underserved communities.

Learn more about Equal Justice Works and available volunteer opportunities.

The Election Official Legal Defense Network (EOLDN) is a project of the nonpartisan, nonprofit Center for Election Innovation & Research. EOLDN connects licensed, qualified, pro bono attorneys with election administrators who need advice or assistance. Election workers from all over the country, at the state and local level, can contact EOLDN via this website or by phone (1-877-313-5210) at any time, to request to be connected to a lawyer who can help them, at no cost. This service is available regardless of the election official’s political affiliation, or whether they work in a blue or red state or county.

Learn more about Election Official Legal Defense Network and available volunteer opportunities. 

FairVote is a nonpartisan organization seeking better elections for all. They research and advance voting reforms that make democracy more functional and representative for every American. FairVote has a proven record since 1992 as a nonpartisan trailblazer that advances and wins electoral reforms at the local, state and national level through strategic research, communications and collaboration. Today, we are the driving force behind advancing ranked choice voting and fair representation in multi-winner legislative districts that will open up our elections to better choices, fairer representation and more civil campaigns.

Learn more about FairVote and volunteer opportunities.

HeadCount is a non-partisan organization that uses the power of music to register voters and promote participation in democracy. HeadCount uses a grassroots approach to reach young people and music fans at concerts and online to inform and empower. Like music and democracy? Come work (or volunteer) with us!

Learn about how to be involved at a concert or event near you.

Indivisible is committed to providing civic education, policy resources, strategic guidance, and targeted trainings for groups across the country. It educates and empowers civic leaders at the community level across the country. 

Learn more about Indivisible and volunteer opportunities available in several states.

Leaders We Deserve is a grassroots organization dedicated to electing young progressives to Congress and State Legislatures across the country to help defeat the far-right agenda and advance a progressive vision for the future.

Learn more about Leaders We Deserve.

The League of Women Voters of the United States encourages informed and active participation in government, works to increase understanding of major public policy issues, and influences public policy through education and advocacy.

Learn more about League of Women Voters.

The Lincoln Project is a leading pro-democracy organization in the United States — dedicated to the preservation, protection, and defense of democracy. The Lincoln Project launched with two stated objectives. The first was to defeat Donald Trump at the ballot box. The second was to ensure Trumpism failed alongside him. As we have seen, our fight against Trumpism is only beginning. We must combat these forces everywhere and at all times. Our democracy depends on it.

Learn more about The Lincoln Project and available volunteer opportunities. 

People For the American Way Foundation conducts research, legal, and education work on behalf of First Amendment freedoms and democratic values; monitors, exposes, and challenges the Religious Right movement and its political allies; identifies, trains, and supports the next generation of progressive leaders through its Young People For youth leadership programs and its Young Elected Officials Network; and carries out nonpartisan voter education, registration, civic participation, and election protection activities.

Learn more about People for the American Way. 

Project Vote is a national, nonpartisan, nonprofit organization founded on the belief that an organized, diverse electorate is the key to a better America. Project Vote’s mission is to build an electorate that accurately represents the diversity of this nation’s citizenry, and to ensure that every eligible citizen can register, vote, and cast a ballot that counts.

Learn more about Project Vote. 

Project Vote Smart offers services and programs for political journalists to enhance their coverage of politics and elections. The Project partners with more than 300 national, state, and local news organizations, all endorsing Project programs. In addition to comprehensive databases on more than 40,000 candidates and incumbents, the Project provides journalists with special research services and publications. We devote considerable effort to researching information about all candidates for presidential, congressional, gubernatorial and state legislative office and elected officials. Voters thus have access to unbiased information on candidates as well as those serving in elected positions.

Learn more about Project Vote Smart and available volunteer opportunities. 

The Public Citizen Foundation supports Public Citizen’s education, litigation, research, and public information activities. Public Citizen is a national consumer advocacy organization founded in 1971 to represent consumer interests in Congress, the executive branch and the courts. Public Citizen fights for openness and democratic accountability in government, for the right of consumers to seek redress in the courts; for clean, safe and sustainable energy sources; for social and economic justice in trade policies; for strong health, safety and environmental protections; and for safe, effective and affordable prescription drugs and health care.

Learn more about Public Citizen and available opportunities. 

Rideshare2Vote was created to increase the voice and power of people by expanding their civic engagement and voting rights. We have created a voter touch outreach field program that includes our transportation service specifically for Democratic and progressive voters. Rideshare2Vote focuses our work in disenfranchised communities; voting for the first time; who are not voting in every election; that are disabled; living in poverty and who are elderly.

Learn more about Rideshare2Vote and available volunteer opportunities. 

Fusing pop culture, politics, and technology, Rock the Vote works to mobilize the millennial voting bloc and the youth vote, protect voting rights, and advocate for an electoral process and voting system that works for the 21st century electorate. For almost 25 years, Rock the Vote has pioneered ways to make voting easier by simplifying and demystifying voter registration and elections for young adults.

Learn more about Rock the Vote and available volunteer opportunities. 

The Andrew Goodman Foundation makes young voices and votes a powerful force in democracy. Our ability to spark their passion — today — will result in change, tomorrow. The Andrew Goodman Foundation supports youth leadership development, voting accessibility, and social justice initiatives on campuses across the country with mini-grants to select institutions of higher learning and other financial assistance to students.
Our vision is that young people will become active, engaged citizens who ensure a just democracy and sustainable future. Join us during this critical time for American democracy and help shape the next generation of civic leaders.

Learn more about The Andrew Goodman Foundation and available volunteer opportunities. 

The Center for Public Integrity is dedicated to producing original, responsible investigative journalism on issues of public concern. The mission of the Center for Public Integrity is to protect democracy and inspire change using investigative reporting that exposes betrayals of the public trust by powerful interests. To pursue its mission, the Center generates high-quality, accessible investigative reports, databases, and contextual analysis on issues of public importance; disseminates work to journalists, policymakers, scholars, and citizens using a combination of digital, electronic, and print media; and educates, engages, and empowers citizens with the tools and skills they need to hold government and other private institutions accountable.

Learn more about The Center for Public Integrity. 

The Civics Center is dedicated to building the foundations of youth civic engagement and voter participation in high schools through education, organizing, and advocacy. We support student-led, peer-to-peer voter registration and pre-registration efforts in high school communities.

Learn more about The Civics Center and available volunteer opportunities. 

TurnUp is non-profit organization and mobile app that comprises the largest youth-led voter registration and turnout initiative. TurnUp’s 2024 election engagement plans include four integrated programs that work together to increase youth voter registration and turnout: physical registration and turnout drives; relational registration and turnout drives; grassroots organizing; and digital campaigns. TurnUp has Volunteer and Internship positions for high school, college, and recent graduates.

Learn more about TurnUp opportunities to get involved.

VoteRiders is a non-partisan, non-profit organization with a mission to ensure that all citizens are able to exercise their freedom to vote. VoteRiders informs and helps citizens to secure their voter ID as well as inspires and supports organizations, local volunteers, and communities to sustain voter ID education and assistance efforts. VoteRiders offers a variety of volunteer options including virtual and on the ground positions.

Learn more about VoteRiders volunteer positions.

When We All Vote is a leading national, nonpartisan initiative on a mission to change the culture around voting and to increase participation in each and every election by helping to close the race and age gap. Created by Michelle Obama, When We All Vote brings together individuals, institutions, brands, and organizations to register new voters across the country and advance civic education for the entire family and voters of every age to build an informed and engaged electorate for today and generations to come. We empower our supporters and volunteers to take action through voting, advocating for their rights, and holding their elected officials accountable.

Learn more about When We All Vote and available volunteer opportunities. 

JUDJ Newsletter

JUDJ regularly sends supporters newsletters highlighting upcoming events and a round up of important articles and news coverage related to our efforts and issue areas.
Dear Friend:   

This Wednesday March 6 we welcome Rabbi Sharon Brous, a founder and senior rabbi of IKAR, a Jewish congregation in Los Angeles.  IKAR has been named repeatedly as one of the nation’s 50 most innovative Jewish nonprofits and Rabbi Brous has been named one of the most influential American Jews and one of the most influential rabbis in America.
 
Rabbi Brous will be discussing her new, national bestselling book, The Amen Effect: Ancient Wisdom to Mend our Broken Hearts and the World.  Based upon certain of Rabbi Brous’ exceptional sermons, the book grapples with the question of what it will take to mend our broken hearts and rebuild our society in this time of loneliness, isolation, social rupture and alienation.  Like Rabbi Brous, the program, which will be moderated by Madeleine Brand, is sure to be uplifting and inspirational! REGISTER HERE

DAVID GROSSMAN : AN ISRAELI PERSPECTIVE ON WHAT’S IN STORE
“Who will we be — Israelis and Palestinians — when this long, cruel war comes to an end?” (No paywall)

In this guest opinion essay in the NY Times, Israeli author, David Grossman, paints a difficult picture of Israel in many respects—its relationship with its neighbors, its place in the world, and its internal struggles.  Most of the article focuses on the impact on the Israel psyche of the horrific events of October 7. “The fear, the shock, the fury, the grief and humiliation and vengefulness, the mental energies of an entire nation — all of those have not stopped flowing to that wound, to the abyss into which we are still falling.” 

Grossman writes about the extreme polarization in Israeli society embodied by last year’s weekly massive democracy rallies, as well as about the desires of Israel’s neighbors to destroy the Jewish state.  It is true, writes Grossman,  that the country unified to fight the invasion.  However, he concludes that Israel is, “a  nation that, despite its enormous accomplishments in so many realms, is still, deep down inside, a nation of refugees, permeated with the prospect of being uprooted even after almost 76 years of sovereignty…One more shameful phenomenon has come to the surface as a result of the war: Israel is the one country in the world whose elimination is most openly called for.” 

His hopeful conclusion is that even though peace seems an impossibility, there is no other choice but to pursue peace.

WHAT WOULD A 2ND TRUMP TERM DO TO OUR ECONOMY? (no paywall) 
There is much to fear beyond the existential threat to our democracy if Trump returns to the White House, writes Steve Rattner who served as counselor to the Treasury secretary in the Obama administration.  In this guest essay in today’s NY Times opinion section Rattner enumerates the adverse economic impacts which he contends will be caused by Trump’s aggressive protectionist approach to trade, which Rattner anticipates will be more severe than it was in the first Trump presidency.  “
In his first term, Mr. Trump imposed tariffs on items ranging from steel to washing machines that, according to economic studies, raised consumer prices and ultimately cost American jobs, in part because other countries retaliated with their own tariffs.”

Now, Trump is promising a 10% levy on imports (and more on  countries who retaliate).  That increased levy alone, writes Rattner, “could raise price level by an estimated 2 to 3 percentage points”.  The overall economic impact of Trump’s re-election, concludes Rattner would be “
irresponsibly stimulative monetary and tax policies that might juice the economy at the expense of higher inflation. Prices would be pushed upward by Mr. Trump’s protectionist trade policies. All of that would eventually cost jobs” and hurt the economy.
SARAH LONGWELL in THE ATLANTIC
HOW DID WE GET HERE AGAIN? (No paywall)


In this article published this week in The Atlantic, Sarah Longwell, executive director of the Republican Accountability Project, publisher of The Bulwark, and host of the Focus Group podcast, shares her view on how Trump became unbeatable as the GOP nominee.   Based on weekly Focus Group conversations with GOP-primary voters, Longwell contends that Republican voters were not inevitably on board with Trump.

Republican elites don’t understand their voters” writes Longwell.  “They [GOP leaders] spent eight years making excuses for Trump and supporting him at every turn, sending the clear signal that this is his party. They spent nearly a decade saying that he was a persecuted martyr—and the greatest president in history. It’s frightening, but not surprising, that their voters think he’s the only man for the job.”
 

Dear Friend:   


Tomorrow at 5 Pacific, we welcome two of the country’s most respected political analysts and pundits, Robert Shrum (D) & Michael Murphy (R), the Director and Co-DIrector respectively of the Center for the Political Future at USC.  They will be in conversation with Patt Morrison of the LA Times on the topic, “2024 Election Year Update: It’s Anything BUT Business as Usual!” (Register Here)

SARAH LONGWELL in THE ATLANTIC
HOW DONALD TRUMP BECAME UNBEATABLE: HOW DID WE GET HERE AGAIN? (No paywall)


In this article published this week in The Atlantic, Sarah Longwell, executive director of the Republican Accountability Project, publisher of The Bulwark, and host of the Focus Group podcast, shares her view on how Trump became unbeatable as the GOP nominee.   Based on weekly Focus Group conversations with GOP-primary voters, Longwell contends that Republican voters were not inevitably on board with Trump. “Republican elites don’t understand their voters” writes Longwell.  “They [GOP leaders] spent eight years making excuses for Trump and supporting him at every turn, sending the clear signal that this is his party. They spent nearly a decade saying that he was a persecuted martyr—and the greatest president in history. It’s frightening, but not surprising, that their voters think he’s the only man for the job.”

GOD & COUNTRY: CHRISTIAN NATIONALISM AND ITS OUTSIZED POWER. (No Paywall)
 In this NY Times op-ed published today, columnist David French defines “Christian Nationalism” and distinguishes it from Christian participation in politics.  “The problem with Christian nationalism” writes French “isn’t with Christian participation in politics but rather the belief that there should be Christian primacy in politics and law.” 

French, who covers religion for the NY Times, was featured in the recently released documentary God & Country, which was the subject of our America at a Crossroads program on February 12   

Christian Nationalism is a visceral movement.  It fosters identity politics wherein its proponents tie the very fate of the church to the outcome of a political race.  “
That fervor can make believers gullible and potentially even dangerous. Its good-versus-evil dynamic can make Christians believe that their political opponents are capable of anything, including stealing an election.”

French notes that the most serious problems with Christian Nationalism are both its belief in Christian supremacy and the outsized impact that the movement (which comprises only 10% of the population) has by conflating itself into the larger Christian electorate.  

TWO YEARS OF RUSSIA’S WAR ON UKRAINE: WHAT UKRAINE NEEDS NOW 
In this Letters From an American post  from this weekend, historian Heather Cox Richardson briefly recounts the two years of Russia’s war.  She then admonishes Congress for its failure to act on Ukraine funding.

Referring to GOP inaction on Ukraine, while instead fixating on abortion and bogus impeachments, Cox Richardson writes:  “[A]s Republican House members remain on vacation, President Biden announced new sanctions against Russia, and Senate majority leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) was in Ukraine, where he challenged House speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) to pass the national security supplemental bill. ‘The weight of history is on his shoulders,’ Schumer told reporters in Lviv. ‘If he turns his back on history, he will regret it in future years.'”

Dear Friend:   


Wednesday, February 28, we welcome two of the country’s most respected political analysts and pundits, Robert Shrum (D) & Michael Murphy (R), the Director and Co-DIrector respectively of the Center for the Political Future at USC.  They will be in conversation with Patt Morrison of the LA Times on the topic, “2024 Election Year Update: It’s Anything BUT Business as Usual!” (Register Here)

GOD & COUNTRY: CHRISTIAN NATIONALISM AND ITS OUTSIZED POWER. (No Paywall)
 In this NY Times op-ed published today, columnist David French defines “Christian Nationalism” and distinguishes it from Christian participation in politics.  “The problem with Christian nationalism” writes French “isn’t with Christian participation in politics but rather the belief that there should be Christian primacy in politics and law.” 

French, who covers religion for the NY Times, was featured in the recently released documentary God & Country, which was the subject of our America at a Crossroads program on February 12   

Christian Nationalism is a visceral movement.  It fosters identity politics wherein its proponents tie the very fate of the church to the outcome of a political race.  “
That fervor can make believers gullible and potentially even dangerous. Its good-versus-evil dynamic can make Christians believe that their political opponents are capable of anything, including stealing an election.”

French notes that the most serious problems with Christian Nationalism are both its belief in Christian supremacy and the outsized impact that the movement (which comprises only 10% of the population) has by conflating itself into the larger Christian electorate.  

TWO YEARS OF RUSSIA’S WAR ON UKRAINE: WHAT UKRAINE NEEDS NOW 
In this Letters From an American post  from this weekend, historian Heather Cox Richardson briefly recounts the two years of Russia’s war.  She then admonishes Congress for its failure to act on Ukraine funding.

Referring to GOP inaction on Ukraine, while instead fixating on abortion and bogus impeachments, Cox Richardson writes:  “[A]s Republican House members remain on vacation, President Biden announced new sanctions against Russia, and Senate majority leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) was in Ukraine, where he challenged House speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) to pass the national security supplemental bill. ‘The weight of history is on his shoulders,’ Schumer told reporters in Lviv. ‘If he turns his back on history, he will regret it in future years.'”

 

Dear Friend:   


If you missed today’s program with election law and voting rights expert, RICK HASEN of UCLA Law in conversation with Larry Mantle of LAist on the topic: A Real Right to Vote: How a Constitutional Amendment Can Safeguard American Democracy you can watch the program at THIS PAST-EVENTS LINK.  The program posts around 3 hours after it ends; you can also listen via podcast AT THIS LINK.

Next Wednesday, February 28, we welcome once again, two of the country’s most respected political analysts and pundits, Robert Shrum (D) & Michael Murphy (R), the Director and Co-DIrector respectively of the Center for the Political Future at USC.  They will be in conversation with Patt Morrison of the LA Times on the topic, “2024 Election Year Update: It’s Anything BUT Business as Usual!” (Register Here)

TRUMP’S MILITARIZED MASS DEPORTATION PLANS ARE DANGEROUS & EXTREME
This column (no paywall) published in The Washington Post this week, describes Trump’s intentions, if elected, to use militarized action and deportation camps to round up the 11.3 immigrants in the US without legal status.  The authors write: “Trump pledges that as president he would immediately launch ‘the largest domestic deportation operation in American history.’ As a model, he points to an Eisenhower-era program known as ‘Operation Wetback,’ using a derogatory slur for Mexican migrants. The operation used military tactics to round up and remove migrant workers, sometimes transporting them in dangerous conditions that led to some deaths. Former administration officials and policy experts said staging an even larger operation today would face a bottleneck in detention space — a problem that Trump adviser Stephen Miller and other allies have proposed addressing by building mass deportation camps.”

HA’ARETZ REPORTS: PRO-ISRAEL, EVANGELICAL MONEY BANKROLL TRUMP RUN
In this article from Ha’aretz (no paywall)  Washington correspondent Ben Samuel reports on the evangelical Christians and American Jews who are the mega-donors bankrolling MAGA’s efforts to re-elect Trump.  The article provides the names and dollar amounts of the major evangelical Christian and Jewish donors, who, despite Trump’s isolationist chokehold on the GOP, have poured millions into the super-PACs supporting Trump’s re-election bid. 

SIMON ROSENBERG’S BLOG POST: “WHY I AM OPTIMISTIC ABOUT 2024”

In this blog post  Simon Rosenberg, Democratic political strategist, analyst and commentator (and guest on America at a Crossroads on December 6, 2023) explains the basis for his optimism that Trump and MAGA will be defeated in November.  In yesterday’s post in his daily Substack blog, Hopium Chronicles, Rosenberg writes: “No poll, no election, no commentator can predict the future. But you can make reasonable assumptions with the data that’s in front of you. That’s what I try to do here every day. And to me the likely scenario – not the only scenario – is Biden-Harris keeping our winning streak alive this November and MAGA loses yet another election.”

Dear Friend:   


Tomorrow we welcome back one of the country’s most respected election law and voting rights experts, RICK HASEN of UCLA Law.  Rick will be in conversation with Larry Mantle of LAist on the topic: A Real Right to Vote: How a Constitutional Amendment Can Safeguard American Democracy which is also the title of Hasen’s recently released book. 

At this link (no paywall) is Rick Hasen’s recent article in The Atlantic in which he provides a 6-point checklist to guarantee the Right to Vote.  First on the list is to actually work towards establishing the right to vote as a “positive right” guaranteed by the US Constitution. Also on the checklist are: (1) establishing the equal weighting of voting, and (2) instituting automatic voter registration.

SIMON ROSENBERG’S BLOG POST: “WHY I AM OPTIMISTIC ABOUT 2024”
In this blog post  Simon Rosenberg, Democratic political strategist, analyst and commentator (and guest on America at a Crossroads on December 6, 2023) explains the basis for his optimism that Trump and MAGA will be defeated in November.  In today’s post in his daily Substack blog, Hopium Chronicles, Rosenberg writes: “No poll, no election, no commentator can predict the future. But you can make reasonable assumptions with the data that’s in front of you. That’s what I try to do here every day. And to me the likely scenario – not the only scenario – is Biden-Harris keeping our winning streak alive this November and MAGA loses yet another election.”

MAGA VIOLENT THREATS & INTIMIDATION TACTICS ARE WARPING AMERICAN LIFE
In this column (no paywall) in Sunday’s NY Times, David French documents the many threats of violence made by MAGA Republicans seeking to intimidate those not supporting Trump. French writes: “The intimidation [by MAGA threats] is systemic and ubiquitous, an acknowledged tactic in the playbook of the Trump right that flows all the way down from the violent fantasies of Donald Trump himself. It is rare to encounter a public-facing Trump critic who hasn’t faced threats and intimidation.”  The best response to these efforts at intimidation, writes French, is to comfort and support those threatened, both with words and deeds. If those who are targeted by these tactics are supported, they can persevere and not succumb to the very real fear which can be overwhelming and debilitating.

JENNIFER RUBIN: FOUR SIGNS THAT TRUMP IS WEAKENING 
In this Washington Post column (no paywall) Jennifer Rubin enumerates 4 signs that Trump’s weaknesses are deepening.  In short, the four signs are: (1)  the dramatic Democratic win in the special election to replace disgraced former Congressman George Santos, as well as the many other special elections in which there have been decisive Democratic victories; (2) the dramatic 70-29 vote in the Senate on the immigration and foreign aid bill, which demonstrated that a significant number of GOP Senators were willing to defy Trump’s politically motivated instructions to kill the bill; (3) the fact that 21 GOP Congress members are choosing not to seek re-election; and (4) the reality that Trump’s trials are closing in on him and he will likely be facing a criminal trial before the November elections.

Dear Friend:   
 

HAPPY PRESIDENT’S DAY WEEKEND.

Wednesday we welcome back one of the country’s most respected election law and voting rights experts, RICK HASEN of UCLA Law.  Rick will be in conversation with Larry Mantle of LAist on the topic: A Real Right to Vote: How a Constitutional Amendment Can Safeguard American Democracy which is also the title of Hasen’s recently released book. 

At this link (no paywall) is Rick Hasen’s recent article in The Atlantic in which he provides a 6-point checklist to guarantee the Right to Vote.  First on the list is to actually work towards establishing the right to vote as a “positive right” guaranteed by the US Constitution. Also on the checklist are: (1) establishing the equal weighting of voting, and (2) instituting automatic voter registration.

MAGA VIOLENT THREATS & INTIMIDATION TACTICS ARE WARPING AMERICAN LIFE
 
In this column (no paywall) in Sunday’s NY Times, David French documents the many threats of violence made by MAGA Republicans seeking to intimidate those not supporting Trump. French writes: “The intimidation [by MAGA threats] is systemic and ubiquitous, an acknowledged tactic in the playbook of the Trump right that flows all the way down from the violent fantasies of Donald Trump himself. It is rare to encounter a public-facing Trump critic who hasn’t faced threats and intimidation.”  The best response to these efforts at intimidation, writes French, is to comfort and support those threatened, both with words and deeds. If those who are targeted by these tactics are supported, they can persevere and not succumb to the very real fear which can be overwhelming and debilitating.
JENNIFER RUBIN: FOUR SIGNS THAT TRUMP IS WEAKENING 

In this Washington Post column (no paywall) Jennifer Rubin enumerates 4 signs that Trump’s weaknesses are deepening.  In short, the four signs are: (1)  the dramatic Democratic win in the special election to replace disgraced former Congressman George Santos, as well as the many other special elections in which there have been decisive Democratic victories; (2) the dramatic 70-29 vote in the Senate on the immigration and foreign aid bill, which demonstrated that a significant number of GOP Senators were willing to defy Trump’s politically motivated instructions to kill the bill; (3) the fact that 21 GOP Congress members are choosing not to seek re-election; and (4) the reality that Trump’s trials are closing in on him and he will likely be facing a criminal trial before the November elections.
 

BRET STEPHENS; ISOLATIONIST GOP VOTE IS DISGRACEFUL AND POTENTIALLY DISASTROUS

In this column  (no paywall) in the NY Times, Bret Stephens writes about the reversion to isolationism by the GOP.  Referring to the Senate vote on the Ukraine-Israel funding bill on Tuesday and the likely refusal by Speaker Johnson to bring the bill to the House floor, Stephens wrote that these days will be remembered in history as “the moment when Republicans reverted to the isolationism of the original America First Committee of pre-World War II infamy.  A majority of the GOP Senate conference, including onetime Ukraine hawks like Lindsey Graham and Tom Cotton, voted against the aid, mostly, they said because it wasn’t paired with border-security measures.”  Stephens then reminds his readers that the Senate GOP actually voted against the (very pro-GOP immigration policy) border-security measure last week. Ironically, writes Stephens, “[t]oday’s GOP isolationists now have more in common with George McGovern’s ‘Come home, America’ slogan than with anything Ronald Reagan or Dwight Eisenhower stood for.” 

Dear Friend:   

 
If you missed today’s program featuring Susan Glasser of The New Yorker in conversation with Warren Olney you can watch the program at THIS PAST-EVENTS LINK.  The program posts about three hours after it ends.  Starting the morning after the program it is also available at THIS PODCAST LINK

Next Wednesday we welcome back one of the country’s most respected election law and voting rights experts, RICK HASEN of UCLA Law.  Rick will be in conversation with Larry Mantle of LAist on the topic: A Real Right to Vote: How a Constitutional Amendment Can Safeguard American Democracy which is also the title of Hasen’s recently released book. 


At this link (no paywall) is Rick Hasen’s recent article in The Atlantic in which he provides a 6-point checklist to guarantee the Right to Vote.  First on the list is to actually work towards establishing the right to vote as a “positive right” guaranteed by the US Constitution. Also on the checklist are: (1) establishing the equal weighting of voting, and (2) instituting automatic voter registration.

GOD & COUNTRY THE FILM

A propos of this past Monday’s America at a Crossroads program, “God & Country: Dictators, Democracy & Christian Nationalism” opens in limited theatrical markets this weekend and will be available via digital streaming in the spring.  To see if the film is playing at a theater in your community, visit this link.

Click here to watch Rob Reiner’s recent interview with Christiane Amanpour, speaking about Christian nationalism and God & Country




BRET STEPHENS; ISOLATIONIST GOP VOTE IS DISGRACEFUL AND POTENTIALLY DISASTROUS

In this column  (no paywall) in yesterday’s NY Times, Bret Stephens writes about the reversion to isolationism by the GOP.  Referring to the Senate vote on the Ukraine-Israel funding bill on Tuesday and the likely refusal by Speaker Johnson to bring the bill to the House floor, Stephens wrote that these days will be remembered in history as “the moment when Republicans reverted to the isolationism of the original America First Committee of pre-World War II infamy.  A majority of the GOP Senate conference, including onetime Ukraine hawks like Lindsey Graham and Tom Cotton, voted against the aid, mostly, they said because it wasn’t paired with border-security measures.”  Stephens then reminds his readers that the Senate GOP actually voted against the (very pro-GOP immigration policy) border-security measure last week. Ironically, writes Stephens, “[t]oday’s GOP isolationists now have more in common with George McGovern’s ‘Come home, America’ slogan than with anything Ronald Reagan or Dwight Eisenhower stood for.” 

PAUL KRUGMAN: THE FOCUS ON BIDEN’S AGE IS GROSSLY MISGUIDED.
In this op-ed column published in Sunday’s NY Times, Paul Krugman writes that special counsel Hur’s “gratuitous treatment of Biden echoed James Comey’s gratuitous treatment of [Hillary] Clinton–Hur and Comey both seemed to want to take political stands when that was not their duty.”  Krugman called Hur’s many comments about Biden’s age “unprofessional.”  He also wrote: “As anyone who has recently spent time with Biden (and I have) can tell you, he is in full possession of his faculties–completely lucid and with excellent grasp of detail.” 

While Krugman and others might prefer this contest were not between two elderly men, Krugman notes that it is Trump’s rants full of lies and gaffes and mistakes, that are far more dangerous and threatening to our country.  “[L]ike it or not, this [election] is going to be a race between Biden and Trump–and somehow the lucid, well-informed candidate is getting more heat over his age than his ranting, factually challenged opponent.”

JENNIFER RUBIN:
GARLAND IS ALSO TO BLAME FOR SPECIAL COUNSEL REPORT
In this column published Sunday in the Washington Post, Jennifer Rubin, like Paul Krugman in the NY Times, writes about the outrageously gratuitous age-related comments in special counsel Hur’s report.  In addition, she criticizes many other aspects of the report which she found to be politically motivated and charged. 

Hur concluded that Biden’s actions were not actionable and that no charges should be brought. He then, according to Rubin, “seemed to intentionally disguise that conclusion with contradictory and misleading language that ‘Biden willfully retained and disclosed classified materials after his vice presidency when he ws a private citizen.'” However, Hur conceded that he could not legally prove that willfulness, which makes the inclusion of those assertions gratuitous, suspect and political.  Rubin goes on to also point the finger at Attorney General Merrick Garland with these words: “Hur is not solely to blame for going beyond his mandate and introducing smears.  Garland erred in appointing and giving free rein to a Republican loyalist…Garland’s lousy judgment wound up sullying and politicizing the Justice Department.”

Dear Friend:   

TOMORROW’S PROGRAM
Tomorrow at 5 pm Susan Glasser of The New Yorker will be in conversation with Warren Olney:  “What Will 2024 Bring Our Nation & the World: The New Yorker’s Susan Glasser Reports.”  (Register Here)

FOLLOW UP TO MONDAYS PROGRAM GOD & COUNTRY
Many of our audience members asked us to share the books and articles mentioned by our guests on Monday:
1.  The Founding Myth: Why Christian Nationalism is Un-American (with a new epilogue on January 6th)
2. American Crusade: How the Supreme Court is Weaponizing Religious Freedom
3. “Christian Nationalism at the January 6, 2021, Insurrection,” report that Sndrew Seidle spearheaded and contributed to with other experts.
4.  Understanding Christian Nationalism reading list. This includes everyone Seidle cited on Monday 

GOD & COUNTRY THE FILM

God & Country opens in limited theatrical markets this weekend and will be available via digital streaming in the spring.  To see if the film is playing at a theater in your community, visit this link.

Click here to watch Rob Reiner’s recent interview with Christiane Amanpour, speaking about Christian nationalism and God & Country.

LINK TO MONDAY’S PROGRAM

Last night’s program featuring Sister Simone Campbell and Andrew Seidel in conversation with Patt Morrison discussing GOD & COUNTRY: Democracy, Dictators & Christian Nationalism, is posted at THIS PAST-EVENTS LINK.  It is also available at THIS PODCAST LINK .



 
PAUL KRUGMAN: THE FOCUS ON BIDEN’S AGE IS GROSSLY MISGUIDED.
In this op-ed column published in today’s NY Times, Paul Krugman writes that special counsel Hur’s “gratuitous treatment of Biden echoed James Comey’s gratuitous treatment of [Hillary] Clinton–Hur and Comey both seemed to want to take political stands when that was not their duty.”  Krugman called Hur’s many comments about Biden’s age “unprofessional.”  He also wrote: “As anyone who has recently spent time with Biden (and I have) can tell you, he is in full possession of his faculties–completely lucid and with excellent grasp of detail.” 

While Krugman and others might prefer this contest were not between two elderly men, Krugman notes that it is Trump’s rants full of lies and gaffes and mistakes, that are far more dangerous and threatening to our country.  “[L]ike it or not, this [election] is going to be a race between Biden and Trump–and somehow the lucid, well-informed candidate is getting more heat over his age than his ranting, factually challenged opponent.”

JENNIFER RUBIN:
GARLAND IS ALSO TO BLAME FOR SPECIAL COUNSEL REPORT
In this column published today in the Washington Post, Jennifer Rubin, like Paul Krugman in the NY Times, writes about the outrageously gratuitous age-related comments in special counsel Hur’s report.  In addition, she criticizes many other aspects of the report which she found to be politically motivated and charged. 

Hur concluded that Biden’s actions were not actionable and that no charges should be brought. He then, according to Rubin, “seemed to intentionally disguise that conclusion with contradictory and misleading language that ‘Biden willfully retained and disclosed classified materials after his vice presidency when he ws a private citizen.'” However, Hur conceded that he could not legally prove that willfulness, which makes the inclusion of those assertions gratuitous, suspect and political.  Rubin goes on to also point the finger at Attorney General Merrick Garland with these words: “Hur is not solely to blame for going beyond his mandate and itroducing smears.  Garland erred in appointing and giving free rein to a Republican loyalist…Garland’s lousy judgment wound up sullying and politicizing the Justice Department.”

Dear Friend:   

PAST EVENTS LINK

If you missed tonight’s program featuring Sister Simone Campbell and Andrew Seidel in conversation with Patt Morrison discussing GOD & COUNTRY: Democracy, Dictators & Christian Nationalismyou can watch the program at THIS PAST-EVENTS LINK. The program posts a few hours after it ends.  It is also available at THIS PODCAST LINK starting the morning after the live program.

For theater locations and showtimes of the film God & Country in your area, go to this link 


WEDNESDAY’S PROGRAM
Wednesday, February 14 at 5 pm Susan Glasser of The New Yorker in conversation with Warren Olney:  “What Will 2024 Bring Our Nation & the World: The New Yorker’s Susan Glasser Reports.”  (Register Here)

Here is a link to many of Susan Glasser’s recent articles and columns at The New Yorker. (Likely behind a paywall)


PAUL KRUGMAN: THE FOCUS ON BIDEN’S AGE IS GROSSLY MISGUIDED.
In this op-ed column published in today’s NY Times, Paul Krugman writes that special counsel Hur’s “gratuitous treatment of Biden echoed James Comey’s gratuitous treatment of [Hillary] Clinton–Hur and Comey both seemed to want to take political stands when that was not their duty.”  Krugman called Hur’s many comments about Biden’s age “unprofessional.”  He also wrote: “As anyone who has recently spent time with Biden (and I have) can tell you, he is in full possession of his faculties–completely lucid and with excellent grasp of detail.” 

While Krugman and others might prefer this contest were not between two elderly men, Krugman notes that it is Trump’s rants full of lies and gaffes and mistakes, that are far more dangerous and threatening to our country.  “[L]ike it or not, this [election] is going to be a race between Biden and Trump–and somehow the lucid, well-informed candidate is getting more heat over his age than his ranting, factually challenged opponent.”

JENNIFER RUBIN:
GARLAND IS ALSO TO BLAME FOR SPECIAL COUNSEL REPORT
In this column published today in the Washington Post, Jennifer Rubin, like Paul Krugman in the NY Times, writes about the outrageously gratuitous age-related comments in special counsel Hur’s report.  In addition, she criticizes many other aspects of the report which she found to be politically motivated and charged. 

Hur concluded that Biden’s actions were not actionable and that no charges should be brought. He then, according to Rubin, “seemed to intentionally disguise that conclusion with contradictory and misleading language that ‘Biden willfully retained and disclosed classified materials after his vice presidency when he ws a private citizen.'” However, Hur conceded that he could not legally prove that willfulness, which makes the inclusion of those assertions gratuitous, suspect and political.  Rubin goes on to also point the finger at Attorney General Merrick Garland with these words: “Hur is not solely to blame for going beyond his mandate and itroducing smears.  Garland erred in appointing and giving free rein to a Republican loyalist…Garland’s lousy judgment wound up sullying and politicizing the Jutice Department.”

Dear Friend:   

PAST EVENTS LINK

If you missed tonight’s program featuring NY TImes columnist Bret Stephens in conversation with Madeleine Brand on the topic: Antisemitism: From Harvard to Gaza East you can watch the program at THIS PAST-EVENTS LINK. The program posts a few hours after it ends.  It is also available at THIS PODCAST LINK starting the morning after the program. 


MONDAY’S PROGRAM

MONDAY, February 12 @ 5 pm Pacific Sister Simone Campbell, Catholic religious sister, lawyer, & lobbyist and Andrew Seidel of Americans United for Separation of Church & State to discuss GOD & COUNTRY, a soon to be released documentary produced by Rob Reiner about democracy, dictators and Christian nationalism. (Register Here). 
For locations and showtimes of the film God & Country go to this link
 


WEDNESDAY’S PROGRAM
Wednesday, February 14 at 5 pm Susan Glasser of The New Yorker in conversation with Warren Olney:  “What Will 2024 Bring Our Nation & the World: The New Yorker’s Susan Glasser Reports.”  (Register Here)

TOM FRIEDMAN: TRUMP & the GOP
In this column Friedman explains why he believes that the GOP is not about “America first”, but rather about “Trump First. Putin Second. America Third,” which is the bumper sticker proposed in the column’s title.   Friedman’s case in point is the bi-partisan compromise bill in the US Senate to provide aid to Ukraine and Israel as well as immigration reform, and the likelihood that, at Trump’s direction, the House Republicans will torpedo that effort. He writes: “Every so often there is a piece of legislation on Capitol Hill that defines America and its values — that shows what kind of country we want to be. I would argue that when it comes to the $118.3 billion bipartisan compromise bill in the Senate to repair our broken immigration system and supply vital aid to Ukraine, Taiwan and Israel, its passage or failure won’t define just America but also the world that we’re going to inhabit.”

 

NATE COHN WRITES: DEMOCRATS WIN SPECIAL ELECTIONS, BUT WHAT ABOUT THE GENERAL ELECTION?
In this article, published in todays NY Times, Nate Cohn, chief political analyst who covers elections, demographics and polling, analyzes voter turnout data  in special elections.  Cohn explains that “Voters who turn out in special elections are more partisan, more politically active and more likely to be older than the average registered voters in the same districts.”  Research reveals that in special elections Democrats have had a major advantage, due in part to the passion and activism of the voters who turn out to vote in special elections.  The voter turnout is linked to feelings about abortion rights and other issues which have been key in recent special elections.  Cohn concludes that the Democrats’ advantage is “strictly about turnout among the highly engaged, not about winning over Republican-leaning voters.”  While in general elections the profile of the voters is completely different, Cohn nevertheless concludes that Democrats “still suggests a slight edge heading into November.”

Dear Friend:   

If you missed today’s program feature Middle East analyst Aaron David Miller in conversation with Rabbi David Wolpe, Rabbi Emeritus, Sinai Temple and Visiting Scholar Harvard Divinity School, you can watch the program at THIS PAST-EVENTS LINK.  The program posts a few hours after its conclusion.  It is also available at THIS PODCAST LINK.   Here is a link of the Ezra Klein podcast featuring Aaron David Miller, which Rabbi Wolpe referenced at the start of tonight’s program.

 

On WEDNESDAY, February 7 @ 5 pm Pacific, NY TImes columnist Bret Stephens will be in conversation with Madeleine Brand on the topic: Antisemitism: From Harvard to Gaza. REGISTER HERE

Here are the two most recent of Stephens’ columns from this week (no paywall): 
This column advocates for the abolition of  UNRWA
This column explains the meaning of Gaza’s tunnels
HERE is a link to Sapir, a quarterly journal of ideas for a “thriving Jewish future”, of which Bret Stephens is the editor-in-chief.

 


NATE COHN WRITES: DEMOCRATS WIN SPECIAL ELECTIONS, BUT WHAT ABOUT THE GENERAL ELECTION?
In this article, published in todays NY Times, Nate Cohn, chief political analyst who covers elections, demographics and polling, analyzes voter turnout data  in special elections.  Cohn explains that “Voters who turn out in special elections are more partisan, more politically active and more likely to be older than the average registered voters in the same districts.”  Research reveals that in special elections Democrats have had a major advantage, due in part to the passion and activism of the voters who turn out to vote in special elections.  The voter turnout is linked to feelings about abortion rights and other issues which have been key in recent special elections.  Cohn concludes that the Democrats’ advantage is “strictly about turnout among the highly engaged, not about winning over Republican-leaning voters.”  While in general elections the profile of the voters is completely different, Cohn nevertheless concludes that Democrats “still suggests a slight edge heading into November.”

 

Dear Friend:   

This week we have two programs:

I. 

MONDAY, February 5 @ 5 pm Pacific Aaron David Miller with Rabbi David Wolpe: Israel in Crisis Briefing #8. REGISTER HERE

Rabbi David Wolpe is Rabbi Emeritus, Sinai Temple (Los Angeles) & visiting scholar, Harvard Divinity School. Recently, Rabbi Wolpe penned this article about antisemitism entitled “On teh Hatred of Jews” published in The Harvard Crimson.

Miller is a veteran Middle East analyst, author, and negotiator who spent 24 years working for the US Department of State advising on Arab-Israel negotiations to both Democractic and Republican secretaries of state.  He directly participated in American efforts to broker agreements between Israel, Jordan, Syria and the Palestinians.  He is a senior fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, focusing on US foreign policy. Miller is a global affairs analyst for CNN and is also a commentator on MSNBC, Bloomberg, and NPR.
At this link you can review Miller’s analysis of various Middle East issues, including the current Israel-Hamas war posted on the Carnegie Endowment’s website.


ii.


WEDNESDAY, February 7 @ 5 pm Pacific, NY TImes columnist Brett Stephens will be in conversation with Madeleine Brand on the topic: Antisemitism: From Harvard to Gaza. REGISTER HERE
Here are the two most recent of Stephens’ columns from this week (no paywall): 
This column advocates for the abolition of  UNRWA
This column explains the meaning of Gaza’s tunnels



NATE COHN WRITES: DEMOCRATS WIN SPECIAL ELECTIONS, BUT WHAT ABOUT THE GENERAL ELECTION?
In this article, published in todays NY Times, Nate Cohn, chief political analyst who covers elections, demographics and polling, analyzes voter turnout data  in special elections.  Cohn explains that “Voters who turn out in special elections are more partisan, more politically active and more likely to be older than the average registered voters in the same districts.”  Research reveals that in special elections Democrats have had a major advantage, due in part to the passion and activism of the voters who turn out to vote in special elections.  The voter turnout is linked to feelings about abortion rights and other issues which have been key in recent special elections.  Cohn concludes that the Democrats’ advantage is “strictly about turnout among the highly engaged, not about winning over Republican-leaning voters.”  While in general elections the profile of the voters is completely different, Cohn nevertheless concludes that Democrats “still suggests a slight edge heading into November.”