An extraordin​ary immigratio​n victory for military families

Far too many of our troops serving at home and abroad live in constant fear that those they love most will be deported.

Thanks to President Obama and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), they can rest easy.

In an extraordinary ruling last week, DHS announced it will halt the deportation of “spouses, children and parents of active-duty military members, reservists who may be called up as part of the ‘Ready Force.'”

Over 50,000 veterans, military family members, and VoteVets supporters signed a petition urging the Washington to take action on immigration reform. And while we’ll keep fighting for comprehensive action, this is a welcome victory.

Please sign our card thanking President Obama and Department of Homeland Security chief Janet Napolitano and we’ll deliver your well-wishes. You can do that here:

DHS argued that the constant threat of deportation put an unnecessary “stress and anxiety” on those who signed up to serve their country through military service.

That’s right. And thanks to their action, a large portion of our force has something extra to be thankful for this Thanksgiving.

Thanks for standing with us in this fight. Your action matters.

Jon Soltz
Iraq War Veteran and Chairman

Make sure Paul Ryan keeps his word on immigration reform ~~ OFA

Video: Watch and share

Everyone needs to remember this:This summer, Paul Ryan told constituents at a town hall that the House would vote on comprehensive immigration reform in the fall.
He showed he’s ready to take the lead — now, it’s up to us to make sure he sticks with it. We went to Wisconsin and talked to a few people who witnessed that town hall firsthand.
Watch the video we put together, and then share it on Twitter or Facebook to show Paul Ryan that OFA supporters are going to hold him to his word.Whatever you do, share this video in a way that Rep. Ryan and his staff
won’t be able to miss. They need to know that the Americans who want to
see comprehensive immigration reform passed into law are counting on him
to follow through on his promise.

Here’s why this is so important: The House has the votes right now to
fix our broken immigration system. Just last week, three more House
members came forward to support comprehensive reform.

There’s a reason it has such broad, bipartisan support — this is
something our country needs. Reform would create more than 3 million
jobs, reduce the deficit by more than $800 billion, and strengthen our
middle class.

Now, we need House leaders to step up and hold a vote. That’s why we
want to make sure no one forgets Paul Ryan’s commitment to doing just

Watch our video — then share it far and wide to show Paul Ryan that we trust he’s a man of his word:

4.8 Million Denied Coverage


The Republican Coverage Gap

The frenzy of attention surrounding insurance companies dropping substandard policies peaked last week when the House of Representatives voted on the GOP’s 46th attempt to repeal Obamacare.

Republicans, however, don’t seem to much care about the nearly 5 MILLION poor Americans who won’t receive any coverage at all because Republican governors and state legislators in 25 states are refusing to expand Medicaid. Indeed, the very same politicians and conservative groups expressing the most outrage about insurers dropping substandard insurance plans are also actively campaigning against the Medicaid expansion.

This means that families making just a few thousand dollars a year are still not considered poor enough to qualify for Medicaid in Texas and many other states refusing to expand eligibility.


Here’s a ThinkProgress infographic showing how those being denied coverage by Republicans for political reasons compares to those who have received cancellation notices.


You can find out more on the coverage gap HERE.

BOTTOM LINE: The number of Americans who Republicans want to gain coverage under Obamacare is ZERO, which they’ve demonstrated by voting almost 50 times to repeal the law. While Democrats want to make Obamacare work, Republicans only want it to go away and are working to deny millions of the neediest Americans health coverage in the meantime.



Going Nuclear on GOP Obstruction

On three recent occasions — January 2011, January 2013, and July 2013 — Senate Democrats threatened to make changes to the Senate filibuster rules in order to stop Republicans from obstructing even the most routine business of the Senate and slow-walking or simply blocking the president’s nominees. Each time, Democrats agreed to very modest changes to the rules or even simply a gentleman’s agreement with Republicans and each time Republicans broke their word and went back to their same old obstructionist ways.

In the past few weeks, things have gotten even worse than usual. Senate Republicans have embarked on an unprecedented campaign of obstruction:

  • Republicans blocked the nomination of Rep. Mel Watt (D-NC) to head the Federal Housing Finance Agency, the agency that oversees mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. He is the first African-American nominated to head the agency and the first sitting Member of Congress denied confirmation since the Reconstruction Era.
  • Leading Republicans have already announced their plans to block two more top Obama nominees: Janet Yellen to head the Federal Reserve (the first woman in the world ever selected to lead a central bank) and Jeh Johnson, the first African-American nominated to lead the Department of Homeland Security.

Republicans have reveled in this disturbing pattern of partisan obstruction, daring Democrats to change the Senate rules in order to eliminate the filibuster on nominations.

Well, it appears Republicans have made their bed and now they may have to lie in it.

A parade of Democrats, including some who have previously expressed strong opposition to the idea, have come forward in recent days to support changing the Senate rules:

  • Sen. Barbara Boxer ((D-CA): “I am very open to changing the rules for nominees. … I was not before, because I felt we could work with them. But it’s gotten to an extreme situation where really qualified people can’t get an up-or-down vote.”
  • Sen. Diane Feinstein (D-CA): “If ever there’s evidence for [a rules change], it is now.” Feinstein said she changed her position after a compromise deal reached last year to push through nominees did not stop obstruction from leaving crucial seats vacant. She told the Huffington Post it is “unconscionable” that Senate Republicans are now allowing a vote on Obama’s cabinet and judicial nominees.
  • Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA): “So far they have shut down the government, they have filibustered people [President Obama] has nominated to fill out his administration and they are now filibustering judges to block him from filling any of the vacancies with highly qualified people: We need to call out these filibusters for what they are: Naked attempts to nullify the results of the last election.” She added, “If Republicans continue to filibuster these highly qualified nominees for no reason other than to nullify the president’s constitutional authority, then senators not only have the right to change the filibuster, senators have a duty to change the filibuster rules. We cannot turn our backs on the Constitution. We cannot abdicate our oath of office.”
  • Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR), one of the original proponents of filibuster reform, said recently: “The Senate rules must change … This is a war on the other two branches of government and their ability to do the jobs the American people need them to do.”
  • Sen. Tom Harkin (D-IA) is another longtime supporter of filibuster reform. He said last month: “We keep getting up to the edge of it, and then we make some, quote, gentleman’s agreement … and then you find out the gentleman’s agreement doesn’t hold. … I’ve been so frustrated by it.”
  • Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV): The Senate majority leader holds the ultimate authority on whether Democrats invoke the nuclear option. He said Tuesday he is actively weighing a rules change, and won’t accept a deal to avert the nuclear option that includes anything less than confirmation of all three D.C. Circuit nominees stalled over the past few weeks. In July, Democrats scored a short-term victory with a deal to confirm seven executive branch nominees in exchange for dropping filibuster reform. But just a few months later, they ended up facing the same sort of Republican obstruction.

Sen. Reid reportedly may move to end the GOP’s partisan obstructionism as soon as this week. We’ll be sure and bring you the latest updates.

BOTTOM LINE: We simply cannot allow a minority in Congress to retroactively veto laws and the results of elections. This is unfair, makes a mockery of our constitutional system, and represents the worst kind of partisan gridlock that the American people are sick and tired of. It’s time for the GOP’s unprecedented campaign of obstruction to end.

President Obama’s Handwritte​n Tribute to the Gettysburg Address

President Obama’s Handwritten Tribute to the Gettysburg Address

150 years after President Lincoln delivered the Gettysburg Address, President Obama penned a handwritten tribute to President Lincoln’s historic remarks.

Click here to read the essay — then pass it on.

Click here to see the full hand-written tribute

What would President Truman say about this Congress?

Deputy Senior Advisor David Simas shares how a group of extreme Republicans in Congress have opposed the President’s legislative agenda at every turn and what they could get done if they simply schedule a vote on pressing national issues.


Americans Are Getting Covered Thanks to the Affordable Care Act

Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, Americans all over the country are enrolling in affordable health coverage. Many were unable to get insurance before and many others are signing up for new plans that offer better coverage than what they had before, often at lower costs.


Community College to Career Tour on the Road Again

Yesterday, Dr. Jill Biden and Labor Secretary Tom Perez made a visit to Cleveland Community College in North Carolina and Broward College in Florida as part of their “Community College to Career” tour designed to highlight innovative workforce training partnerships.