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The Senate's Bold Step Forward

August 04, 2010

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This message comes from AFSCME President Gerald W. McEntee and Secretary-Treasurer Lee A. Saunders.

Today, the U.S. Senate took a bold step forward in the effort to protect jobs and bolster America's economic recovery. The Senate, by a 61 to 38 margin, overcame the filibuster opposing H.R. 1586, which provides significant aid to states and school districts.

This is an enormous step in the right direction for AFSCME members fighting to protect our jobs. And at the end of the day, all Democratic senators voted to protect those very jobs. And with two courageous exceptions, Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins of Maine, Republican senators voted to lay off thousands of public employees.

Over the last several months, AFSCME members like you have called, e-mailed, and faxed your senators — and recruited your friends and co-workers around the country to secure this victory.  You urged the Senate to do the right thing and avoid prolonging the economic crisis that confronts public service workers in every community in this country. And your voice — along with thousands of other AFSCME members — was heard in Washington, DC.

Because of your ongoing actions we were able to move this critically important bill forward. Under the leadership of Sen. Harry Reid and with the persistence of Senate Democrats and you, the Senate has thrown a lifeline to millions of Americans who are being hit hard by the worst economy since the Great Depression.

The Republican filibuster was our biggest obstacle. But, we still face a vote in the House and we will need your help to ensure victory there. As we look to the elections, Americans have a clear choice: Democrats who will do what it takes to save and create jobs and get our economy moving, or Republicans who are all too willing to watch the economy stall for their political gain.

Thanks again for all that you've done to help pass this critical bill and save more than 900,000 public and private sector jobs. We'll be sure to keep you updated on what's next.

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