March Newsletter - Volume 3, Issue 6
Upcoming WDC Events
Democratic Party Events
Obamacare House Parties
Columnist E.J. Dionne Enthralls Audience at March 12 Luncheon
Annual New Member Dinner
Political Book Club
Volunteers: It Takes a Village
You may click on one of the above titles to go directly to that subject, or simply scroll down the newsletter.
Thanks to Sybil Cantor, Teddi Pensinger, Joyce Lipman and Bonnie Wicklund for their contributions to the newsletter.
UPCOMING WDC EVENTS
Mark your calendars now for these upcoming events. For more information on locations and registration, watch for future e-mails and daisy cards - or visit our website at www.womansdemocraticclub.org.
Thursday, April 11
7141 Arlington Road, Bethesda
Want to meet new people and talk politics? Join us at the next WDC Happy Hour. Every second Thursday of each month, Democrats who are passionate about politics gather to relax and network with WDC members and their guests. Whether you want to meet elected officials, make new friends, form new business contacts or just have fun, the WDC Happy Hour is the perfect place to meet and greet fellow Democrats.
Friday, April 12
Lunch with Washington Post op-ed columnist Ruth Marcus
Normandie Farm Restaurant, 10710 Falls Road, Potomac
Cost by mail: $30 members; $35 non-members
Cost online: $31 members, $36 non-members
Washington Post Editorial Board Member and former Pulitzer Prize finalist for Commentary, Ruth Marcus will share her well-honed perspective on the current kaleidoscope of events in our nation's capital. Her breadth of reporting experience includes issues relevant to the State of Maryland, national politics, with an emphasis on campaign finance and lobbying, as well as the Supreme Court, Congress and the White House. Be sure to join WDC to hear the "gospel of Ruth" on the political state of the nation.
To RSVP, send your check to Judith Heimann, 6900 Marbury Road, Bethesda, MD 20817 or reserve online at http://www.womansdemocraticclub.org by noon Tuesday, April 9. (Reservations may be closed earlier if the event is sold out.) Questions? Call Natalie Bouquet at 301-907-7856.
Thursday, April 18
Going Into Practice: Implementing Obamacare in Maryland
District 20 House Party
7 - 8:30 p.m.
Home of Jean Bailey, 517 Ellsworth Drive, Silver Spring
WDC is hosting Obamacare house parties in each of the County's legislative districts. The WDC District 20 party will be co-hosted by Jean Bailey, Rosie Engman, Sharon Lynch and Carolyn Michell.
For additional information, see Obamacare House Parties. Please contact Jean Bailey at firstname.lastname@example.org to RSVP.
Friday, April 26
Montgomery 101: Poverty among Plenty
10:00 - 11:30 a.m.
The Jane E. Lawton Community Center
4301 Willow Lane, Chevy Chase
Come hear from representatives from INTERFAITH WORKS, WIDER CIRCLE, MANNA, MOBILEMED and NOURISH NOW about the depth of the poverty problem in Montgomery County. Learn what each of these five agencies are doing to address it, and what each of us can do to help. To RSVP, contact Lucy Freeman at email@example.com or 301-654-8115. Although there is no charge for this program, we urge you to bring a can of food. Note: You may park on the streets if the parking lot is full. We have been assured that the police will not ticket cars during this program.
Friday, May 3
Guided Tour of the Gettysburg Battlefield
9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. (Returning to the parking location at Montgomery Mall by 5:00 p.m.)
Cost by mail: $35 members; $40 non-members
Cost online: $36 members, $41 non-members
In honor of the 150th anniversary of the battle of Gettysburg, members will carpool to Gettysburg, tour the new Visitors' Center, view the film and Cyclorama, and enjoy a private 2-hour guided battlefield tour on a bus by a licensed Battlefield tour guide. For a detailed agenda of the day's activities and for additional information, please click here. To register, please mail your check toJudith Heimann, 6900 Marbury Road, Bethesda, MD 20817 or go to http://www.womansdemocraticclub.org by Monday, April 15. Questions? Contact Ellie Kleinman at EDKleinman@aol.com or 301-806-3799.
Tuesday, May 7
Going Into Practice: Implementing Obamacare in Maryland
District 15 House Party
7 - 8:30 p.m.
Home of Kathy Deerkoski, 9901 Aldersgate Road, Potomac
The WDC District 15 Obamacare house party will be hosted by Kathy, Ginger Macomber, and Margaret Hadley.For additional information, see Obamacare House Parties. Please RSVP to Katherine.firstname.lastname@example.org or 301-452-4626.
Saturday, May 18
May Tea with Democratic political strategist Celinda Lake
5520 Wisconsin Avenue, Chevy Chase
Details to follow
One of the Democratic Party's leading political strategists, Ms. Lake is an expert on helping women win elective office and on interpreting the women's vote, nationally and around the world.
Saturday, May 11
Montgomery County Democratic Party's Spring Ball and Auction
6:30 - 11:30 p.m.
Bethesda North Marriott Hotel & Conference Center
5701 Marinelli Road, Rockville
Join WDC for the Spring Ball and Auction sponsored by the Montgomery County Democratic Central Committee. The Annual Spring Ball is one of two fund raisers the Party hosts each year. The other is the Annual County Brunch held in March. For more information, click here .
OBAMACARE HOUSE PARTIES: "GOING INTO PRACTICE: IMPLEMENTING OBAMACARE IN MARYLAND"
The District 19 house party was held on March 21st. Leni Preston, Chair, Maryland Women's Coalition for Health Care Reform and lead advocate for "Getting It Right" in implementing health care reform in Maryland, briefed our members on how the Affordable Care Act of 2010 affects individuals and how Maryland is implementing it.
|District 19 attendees listen intently as Leni discusses the implementation of Obamacare|
In the February newsletter, Mary Lou Fox summarized Leni's briefing at an earlier house party. We are repeating this important information below:
Some of the provisions of the Affordable Care Act are already in effect such as allowing dependent children up to the age of 26 to stay on their parents ' plan and the elimination of preexisting conditions for children. Beginning in 2014 affordable insurance options will expand coverage through state exchanges for:
- Medicaid expansion to cover adults up to 138% of the Federal Poverty Limit (FPL);
- Advanced tax credits for adults from 138 - 400% FPL to help pay premiums;
- Tax credits for small businesses to afford insurance for their employees.
Maryland's Health Benefit Exchange has been established and expanded by State law in 2011 and 2012 to offer all Marylanders the opportunity to buy insurance as individuals, as a family or as small businesses in a marketplace called the Maryland Health Connection (www.marylandhealthconnection.gov). Beginning with Open Enrollment in October 2013, individuals and families who are uninsured or who purchase their own Individual insurance can go to the Maryland Health Connection to view Qualified Health Plans (QHPs) that meet ACA standards . At that time, they may immediately enroll for insurance that will start on January 1, 2014.
These QHPs will cover all basic care - doctor's visits, hospital visits, maternity care, prescription drugs and more including mental health and substance abuse services. Enrollment can be done on the website but there will also be Navigators or assistors to help people enroll as well as a Call Center. During the enrollment process individuals and families will have the opportunity to see if they qualify for a tax credit or for Medicaid. If so, they can be enrolled immediately. Projections are that 340,000 uninsured Marylanders will be enrolled in the first three years.
The ACA benefits all consumers as well as those with employer -provided insurance plans because pre-existing conditions can no longer be used to deny insurance coverage and women cannot be charged more than men. Also included in the ACA is Sen. Mikulski's amendment that women's preventative services will be available without co-pays and deductibles. Existing health plans outside the new marketplaces will be "grandfathered" until they significantly change.
For more information, or to receive regular updates, see the Coalition website www.mdhealthcarereform.org.
COLUMNIST E.J. DIONNE ENTHRALLS AUDIENCE AT MARCH 12 LUNCHEON
by Joyce Lipman
|E.J. Dionne responds to question at |
March 12 Luncheon.
Although Washington Post political columnist E.J. Dionne daringly ventured a response to a question on Papal candidates, the main thrust of his remarks at WDC's March luncheon focused on the historically conflicting strains of the American story-community versus rugged individualism --.think of Jimmy Stewart versus Clint Eastwood.
Dionne believes that the American story has taken a progressive path, moving incrementally towards social justice for all (abolition of slavery, establishment of women's rights, etc.). His new book Our Divided Heart: The Battle for the American Idea in an Age of Discontent, argues that the communitarian impulse defined our beginnings with the preamble to the Constitution "We the people...." In fact, the list of grievances under King George III in the Declaration of Independence ("our first negative political ad") allows for taxes with representation and laws for the public good.
Citing Adams, Madison, Hamilton, Lincoln, Wilson, and Teddy Roosevelt, Dionne went back into history to show us instances of belief in the role of government in creating a better society. Progressives and populists have seen government as a tool for checking the power of the private sphere. Yet in recent years the individualist model has gained ascendancy, culminating in the Tea Party and its intransigence.
Dionne faults this group for the one-sided view that ignores the historical balance between the two American ideals. After all, he said, the Founders, whom the Tea Party reveres, were feisty politicians and adventurers who understood and practiced the need for compromise and change. Their words and deeds offer the means to counter Tea Party arguments, something progressives have not, so far, done effectively. To Dionne, the last election "ratified an idea of ourselves as a country of people who look out for each other," and that, he added, "is the very best part of what makes us American."
Following his talk, he answered questions on optimism for the future, campaign finance, big banks, entitlements and taxes, as well as voting rights. He concluded by stressing that "communitarian" and "individualistic" are not, respectively, synonymous with "progressive" and "conservative." Progressives do, for example, believe in individual choice in the moral realm. But to move forward, we need to decide together what can better be addressed by government alone and what should be addressed by alliances with the private sector. And then Dionne turned to his Papal projections.
ANNUAL NEW MEMBER DINNER
|Dana Priest addresses attendees at |
New Member Dinner
The fourth annual new member dinner was held on Tuesday March 19th at the home of Betsy Stephens in Chevy Chase. The purpose of the dinner was to give new members an opportunity to meet each other as well as members of the Board and to learn more about the Club. Volunteers were also invited to the dinner as a "thank you" for their work on the Club's behalf. The speaker at this year's event was Dana Priest, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist with The Washington Post) who discussed her reporting on national security issues. Dana spoke about current security issues including the threat posed by North Korea which she views as the most significant and the need for secrecy as opposed to the public's right and need to know about national security. She also spoke about her portrayal of the Taliban leader Mullah Fazlullah,also known as "Mullah Radio" who apparently ordered the attack on the Pakistani schoolgirl Malala Yousafzai.
Don't forget to like us on Facebook; we're listed as Woman's Democratic Club, Montgomery County.
|POLITICAL BOOK CLUB
The April 24 selection is Drift: The Unmooring of American Military Power by political talk show host Rachel Maddow. The premise of the book is that our country has become a national security state at peace with perpetual war. The narrative takes the reader from the Vietnam War to today's war in Afghanistan, along the way exploring the rise of executive authority, the gradual outsourcing of war-making capabilities to private companies, the plummeting percentage of American families whose children are fighting in these seemingly constant wars and the changing fortunes of the American soldier.
The book club meets the third Wednesday of every other month, 10:30 a.m. at members' homes. A facilitator leads the discussion for each book. Want to join the conversation? New members are always welcome! For more information, contact Estelle Stone at email@example.com.
If you're interested in seeing what other books have been discussed, please go to www.womansdemocraticclub.org and click on Political Book Club, which is listed under Events.
VOLUNTEERS: IT TAKES A VILLAGE
We need your help creating a vibrant Club and we solicit your ideas and participation. And the most valuable contribution you can make to the Club is - you guessed it - your time. Sharing your skills and expertise with us and joining a committee are fun ways to meet other members and make new friends while helping the Club accomplishits goals. Go to www.womansdemocraticclub.org and click on "Get Involved, then click on Volunteer to complete the volunteer form.
Do you have ideas for future programs? Do you know someone who would be a great speaker at a future WDC event? If so, please send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org .
Keeping members better informed, better connected and more politically effective since 1957