PVA Meeting Recap – October 28, 2010

Speaking From the Heart: Get out the Vote

Don Kurtz spoke about the importance of participating, on the weekend before the election, in Get Out the Vote activities sponsored by Organizing for America. The PVA itself is nonpartisan, but Don asked for time as a private citizen to express his support for the OFA’s organizing efforts. He pointed to the long progressive tradition of expanded rights and opportunities for the American people, recalled the deep involvement of PVA attendees in local political campaigns, and urged us to join the overall GOTV effort being mounted by OFA.

For more information send email to Don. Contact information for organizations and candidates who have spoken at PVA is here.

Unified Action for October

October’s Unified Action is PVA’s traditional election year action—talk to five friends about the candidates you believe in.

For more information, visit the Unified Action Web page for October here.

September’s Unified Action

Last month 95 people sent in “I did it’s” to report that they had contributed time and/or money to a campaign of their choice.

For more information visit the Unified Action Web page for September here.

Voter Protection—Seriously!

Peter Ossorio urged everyone who is able to be a poll watcher on Election Day to attend the final training opportunity this Saturday. He stated that 50 precincts in Doña Ana County still do not have Democratic poll watchers.

Peter  read an email sent by the Doña Ana Tea Party urging members to sign up to be poll watchers for the Republican party. The memo, intemperate at best, seemed to advocate disenfranchising Democratic voters. Peter stressed that the goal of Democratic poll watchers is to protect the right of all voters.

Voter Protection Training
Saturday, October 30, 11 a.m.
Democratic Headquarters.
139 N. Water Street (aka, “the Old Popular Store” next to Zeffiro’s pizzeria)

For more information send email to Peter or call him at 575-644-8436.

The Mighty Pen

City Councilor Gill Sorg reported that he received 150 messages about curbside recycling with 92% of the messages being in favor. [See August Unified Action here.] “Don’t doubt the power of your voice,” he counseled.

For more information send email to Gill or call him at 575-541-0577.

Beware the Perfect

Jean Ossorio, tireless advocate for wolves, drew a stark contrast between Harry Teague and Steve Pearce, the candidates for U.S. Representative in our district. She reminded us that Pearce is the candidate who famously said, “Nothing is more attractive to a wolf than the sound of a crying baby.”

Noting that she does not agree with every vote by Teague, she urged: “Don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good. Go out and vote for Harry.”

For more information send email to Jean, call her at 575-644-7389, and visit mexicanwolves.org on the Web.

Andy Segovia for County Assessor

Andy Segovia thanked the PVA for the forum it provides, promised to attend future meetings, and urged everyone to get out the vote. He described the candidates on the Democratic ticket in Doña Ana County as “experienced, qualified, and hard working.”

For more information send email to Andy or call him at 575-640-5675.

Organizing for America

Tia Upchurch-Love invited volunteers to join in OFA’s get out the vote effort. They will have jobs for everyone with door-to-door contacts being the number one priority.

For more information send email to Tia or call her at 575-652-7027. Visit OFA on the Web and follow them on Twitter

Billy Garrett for County Commission

Billy Garret expressed appreciation for the PVA forum and offered volunteers the opportunity to “close strong” by waving a Billy Garrett “cactus sign” (101 feet from polling places)

For more information, send email to Billy, call him at 575-915-5755, or visit billyg4dac.org.

Judge Mannie Arrieta for District Court

Judge Arrieta expressed his thanks for support during the campaign. He spoke of canvassing in the southern districts of the county and the impression he gained there that people are ready to vote and are simply needing to be asked. He closed by saying, “Let’s keep coming here” to listen and to talk about the issues.

For more information send email to Mannie.

PVA Special November Post-Election Meeting

Theresa Westbrock, chair of the PVA executive board, issued a special invitation for the post-election November meeting to be held Thursday, November 18. The meeting marks the sixth anniversary of the PVA and is a time to reflect.

Special Post-Election PVA Meeting
Thursday, November 18, 7 p.m.
Munson Center

For more information send email to Theresa.

350.org Names Las Cruces Project to Top Ten in North America

Theresa Westbrock announced that Las Cruces’s participation in 350.org’s global work party on 10.10.10. was a huge success. They installed solar panels for the Mesilla Valley Community of Hope, insulated, caulked, and changed to energy-efficient light bulbs. A summary of the project and a slide show are here including photos of Bob Diven’s gigantic chalk drawing on the Mountain View Market parking lot. Of the 7,347 projects conducted in 188 countries around the world on 10.10.10, the Las Cruces project was selected as one of the top ten projects in all of North America.

For more information, send email to Theresa and visit the Green Las Cruces Web site, where you will be able to make a donation, get involved, and learn more about the project and future plans.

Joel Cano for Magistrate Judge

Joel Cano noted that “the campaign road has been long, but it’s been fun.” He reported that early voting was “going well” and invited everyone to an election results party beginning at 7 p.m. on Election Eve.

Election Results Party
Tuesday, November 2, 7 p.m.
Beverly Hills Hall (corner of Griggs and Hermosa)

For more information send email to Joel.

Juan “J.R.” Stewart for Sheriff

Juan Stewart introduced Frank Gonzales, candidate for undersheriff. He noted his 31 years’ experience with the police department, his commitment to the community, and his belief in cooperating with other agencies and welcoming community voices.

For more information send email to Juan or call him at 575-644-0650.

Poll Watchers Rock

Bob Diven, just back from his first-ever poll watcher training session, expressed his enthusiasm for the training he received and urged others to join with him in the honorable job of  poll watcher.

For more information send email to Bob. Check out his blog at the Church of Bob and visit his Web site.

I’m With Reasonable

Mary Lujan, sporting her “I’m With Reasonable” t-shirt, asked us to observe the Rally to Support Sanity, possibly by lighting a pumpkin.

She conveyed Bill McCamley’s thanks to PVA for support during his campaign for Public Regulation Commission.

She asked that we give cash donations to Casa de Peregrinos, the local emergency food program, and offered to deliver contributions to them.

For more information send email to Mary.

The Land Commissioner Matters

Bob Hearn spoke in support of Ray Powell for State Land Office Commissioner. He noted that the Land Office controls vast amounts of land all around our city and county. He reminded us that recent deals made by the Land Office did not seem to be protecting the public interest.

For more information send email to Bob.

Mary Jane Garcia

Chris Salas circulated a get well card for State Senator Mary Jane Garcia, who is recovering from a purse-snatching assault outside an Albuquerque hotel. He spoke of her firm and courageous commitment to civil rights and animal rights, as well.

For more information send email to Chris.

It Pays to Buy Local

Gary Camuñez, extending the voting theme, argued that you are voting with your checkbooks and credit cards whenever you choose to shop with local merchants. He pointed out that local businesses maintain our uniqueness, give back to the community 350% more than large corporations, and keep our dollars in our community—45 cents on every dollar as opposed to the big box stores that keep only 14 cents and send the rest back to headquarters.

Learn about the Green Chamber and the shop local campaign here. To become a member of the Green Chamber or for more information send email to Gary or call him at 560-702-3772.

Democratic Women

Judy Baker, president of Democratic Women of Doña Ana County, invited everyone to attend their next meeting.

Democratic Women of Doña Ana County
Saturday, November 6, 10 a.m.
139 N. Water St, (aka, “the old Popular Store” next to Zeffiro’s Pizzeria)

For more information send email to Terri McBrayer or call her at 575-541-9667.

Dara Parker for Jeff Steinborn

Dara spoke in support of Jeff Steinborn, welcoming volunteers to help with the final days of the campaign. She reminded us that the outcome of Jeff’s race and many others will be making a difference in our daily lives.

For more information send email to Dara or call her at 914-806-3483.

A Reasonable Conservative Voice

Greg Sowards began by asserting that he too was dismayed by the Tea Party memo read earlier by Peter Ossorio. He asserted his belief that “conservative principals are the answer” and that they apply in all sorts of situations.

For more information send email to Greg or call him at 575-649-7400.

Otero Mesa Needs Your Letters

Jason Burke of the Southwest Environmental Center (SWEC) announced a presentation on Otero Mesa.

Otero Mesa Talk
Wednesday, November 27, 6:30 p.m.
Southwest Environmental Center
275 North Downtown Mall

There is an effort underway to see that Otero Mesa receives permanent protection by the end of the year. Concerned citizens are needed to write letters and make phone calls. A panel of speakers is available to make presentations to local groups.

For more information send email to Jason or call him at 575-915-2766. Visit SWEC on the Web at WildMesquite.org.

Drive Democrats to the Polls

Gayle Radom asked for volunteers who would like to drive Democrats to the polls on Election Day.

For more information send email to Gayle.

Pat Aguirre for Billy Garrett

Pat thanked volunteers (and brought door hangers for them to deliver) and invited everyone to attend an election night celebration.

Billy Garrett’s Election Night Fiesta
Tuesday, November 2, 7 to 9 p.m.
Andele’s in Mesilla

For more information send email to Pat or call her at 575-532-5127.

Alice Salcido for Probate Judge

Judge Salcido said she has enjoyed her first term as probate judge and would like to serve another.

For more information send email to Alice or call her at 575-523-0701.

Lew Feldstein to Speak on Building Strong a Community

Ella Nelson announced that Lew Feldstein, of the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard, will be speaking in Las Cruces on the topic of social capital.

Better Together: Social Capital and Community Engagement
Lecture and Discussion by Lew Feldstein
Tuesday, November 9, 6 p.m.
Las Cruces City Hall Chambers

You can learn more about Feldstein’s work at Better Together on the Web.

For more information send email to Ella or call her at 575-524-0663.

Brian Colón Delivers a Stemwinder

Brain Colón, Democratic candidate for lieutenant governor began by acknowledging former State Representative J. Paul Taylor, whom he called “my favorite representative of all time.” He then delivered one of his trademark rousing speeches on the topic of getting out the vote.

For more information send email to Brian.

Leticia Benavidez for Diane Denish

County Commissioner Leticia Benavidez recounted a recent conversation with her teenage daughter.

Daughter: Mom, I need to find a job.
Mom (recalling that New Mexicans can now be election clerks starting at age 16): Would you like to be a poll worker?
Daughter: I don’t have to strip or anything, do I?

Leticia reminded us that Susana Martinez declined to investigate housing authority corruption in New Mexico, whereas Diane Denish tackled the problem indictments in the case have been issued.

For more information send email to Leticia or call her at 575-635-5146.


Newlyweds Xochi Torres Small and Nathan Small, promoted the final three days of GOTV, eloquently urging everyone to participate in an effort that can make the difference in county and statewide races.

For more information send email to Xochi or call her at 575-496-5782.

Come to a Labeling Party

Tomás Talamante invited everyone to a labeling, i.e., a party to affix labels with polling place information to door hangers.

Labeling Party
Saturday and Sunday, October 30 and 31
Democratic Headquarters
139 N. Water Street

For more information send email to Tomas or call him at 505-301-0488.

NM Green Chamber Christmas Party

Elisa Cundiff and Paul Heiberger invited everyone to a huge and gala Holiday Office Party that the Green Chamber will be hosting.

Green Chamber Holiday Joint Office Party
Thursday, December 16
Farm and Ranch Heritage Museum

Tickets are available with special deals for new members. You can view the invitation complete with the menu and other details here. For more information send email to Elisa or call her at 575-513-7285.

Glimmer of Hope for Lomas de Poleo

Father Bill Morton reported that there is some hope now for negotiation and arbitration to alleviate the plight of the residents of Lomas de Poleo.

Current news of the situation in Lomas de Poleo is posted here.

For more information or to sign the petition, send email to Father Morton.

People’s Rule

Speed Powrie announced his intention to be a vigilant advocate for democracy. He vowed to be to people’s rule as Jean Ossorio is to the Mexican gray wolf and promised that we would be hearing more from him at future PVA meetings.

For more information send email to Speed or call him at 619-405-6520.

Nate Cote Shares Your Values

Cheryl Frank spoke in support of Nate Cote. She noted his values, his effectiveness in the legislature, and the difficulty of getting elected in his strongly Republican district.

To join in helping Nate get out the vote,  send email to Cheryl, call her at 575-650-7607, and visit the campaign Web site.

Petition for Lomas de Poleo

Charlotte Lipson read the petition that is being circulated in support of the residents of Lomas de Poleo. The petition can be signed electronically by emailing your intention to Charlotte.

For more information send email to Charlotte.

Christy French

Christy French offered this motivation for voters to cast their ballot for Diane Denish: three district court vacancies are coming up; the governor will appoint the judges to fill the vacancies; the decisions of those judges will affect our lives every day.

For more information send email to Christy.

Gill’s Last Word

Don’t wake up Wednesday morning thinking, “I could have done more.”

For more information send email to Gill.

The Poet’s Last Words

Matt Meyers came to the meeting with the following lines in hand.

The Sun is a role model of what we can be:
A radiant, consistent, generosity.
People of the desert are especially blessed
With the Sun’s enlightening exuberance.——–
The Prophet Motive
May we generously share our unique gifts,
The genius that each of us is born with.

For more information send email to Matt or call him at 575-523-1375.

Our next meeting will be
Thursday, November 18, 2010, 7 p.m.
Munson Senior Center, 975 S. Mesquite

Please note that this is not the usual 4th Thursday meeting but a special post-election meeting on the 3rd Thursday. Hope you can be there!


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