Democrats Abroad – 2008/08/28 Meeting

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Published by request.
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The London chapter of Democrats Abroad Canada will be hosting a Convention Watch Party starting at 7:00 p.m. on Thursday, August 28th at Joe Kool’s (595 Richmond Street at Central) in the back room, to view Senator Barack Obama’s televised acceptance speech as the Democratic Presidential candidate.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact:
Edmund Goehring, Co-Chair, London Chapter, DAC
Tel: 519-488-1793 Email: goehring@start.ca
– or –
Gena Gruschovnik, Co-Chair, London Chapter, DAC
Tel: 519-641-0500 or 519-641-9034 Email: otm@rogers.com

THE NEXT AMERICAN PRESIDENT?
Join Democrats Abroad Canada London Chapter for the Democratic Convention Watch

The London chapter of Democrats Abroad Canada will be hosting a Convention Watch Party starting at 7:00 p.m. on Thursday, August 28th at Joe Kool’s (595 Richmond Street at Central) in the back room, to view Senator Barack Obama’s televised acceptance speech as the Democratic Presidential candidate. He is expected to communicate the urgency of the moment and call on Americans to come together to change the course of the nation.

London Chapter Co-chairs Edmund Goehring and Gena Gruschovnik invite Americans, dual citizens, interested Canadians and anyone who wants to join in the excitement, to share in Thursday evening’s revelry.

Obama’s speech will take place at INVESCO Field in Denver, Colorado, the “Mile High City.” Media mega-coverage is expected to reach 20,000 – twice the number that converged on that city for the 2002 Winter Olympics. Obama will deliver his speech before this 70,000-seat stadium, which was expanded specifically for the event. If that’s not enough pressure, this is the first time since John F. Kennedy’s 1960 address at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum that a Democratic nominee has given his acceptance speech outside the convention’s main floor. The date will also coincide with the 45th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I&nsp;Have&nsp;a&nsp;Dream” speech, providing emotional resonance for a man making history as the first black presidential nominee of either major political party in the U.S.

Obama recently confirmed Delaware Senator Joe Biden as his running mate. Obama and Biden are advocating a staged withdrawal of most troops from Iraq within 16 months of inauguration day.

Gruschovnik, an American who is married to a London Canadian, says, “Whether we live in the U.S. or not, Americans are ready for a real transformation. We have a vision of what America can be, should be, and it hasn’t been living up to its potential. We can’t avoid or defer the challenges we are faced with – whether it’s a matter of developing more sensitive foreign policies, ending the war in Iraq, environmental and energy conservation solutions, or health care for all Americans – these are not small issues, and they won’t be resolved overnight. We must all be invested in the future, and committed to that change.

London was one of several Canadian cities that opened voting centres for Americans who voted in the Democratic Global Primary on February 5th this year. The chance to vote for a nominee between the Democratic candidates fired up the enthusiasm of American expatriates around the world, including the group that came together in London. Expats, like their American resident counterparts, are voting in record number this year.

The stakes are high and every vote counts,” said Goehring, a University of Western Ontario music professor who moved to London from Indiana three years ago. “Do you know an American or dual citizen living here? If so, please tell them about our organization, and bring them to Joe Kool’s on Thursday!

There are an estimated 700,000 American citizens living in Canada who are eligible to vote; some 10% of them voted in the last Presidential election. Still, many U.S. citizens living abroad are unaware that they are able to vote.

We need to rally all Americans to vote in this election,” said Gruschovnik. “The nonpartisan group, Center for Responsive Politics, just announced that our troops deployed abroad are donating to Obama 6:1 over McCain. This is despite McCain’s status as a decorated veteran. It will take action and personal responsibility on everyone’s part, in order to win the election, and make a difference in the next four years. I especially urge the young Americans and young dual citizens living in Canada to participate – if you are over the age of 18, you are eligible to vote and we can help you to get registered. It may be the most important thing you do this year.

This year’s election is expected to be an historical time for American voter participation in Canada, which peaked in the 2004 Federal election over Bush Administration policies. Democrats Abroad Canada, the world’s largest DA country committee, has 13 chapters across the country. Deadlines for requesting overseas absentee ballots vary per state. Given postal times, Americans or dual citizens living in Canada should register for absentee ballots no later than October 4th.

The London Chapter Co-chairs will have a supply of Federal Postcard Application Forms on-hand, as well as Voting Assistance Guides. It’s now much easier for American citizens and dual citizens living abroad to vote, and they urge you to get your form filled out this Thursday, or register online to ensure that your vote counts. http://votefromabroad.org/2

Democrats Abroad Canada, headquartered in Toronto, Ontario, is one of 43 Democratic country committees worldwide operating under the umbrella Democratic Party Committee Abroad (DPCA). The DPCA is the official Democratic Party organization that serves some six million American citizens who live in countries outside the United States. The purpose is to educate Americans about the U.S. overseas political process and help them register to vote in Federal elections. Membership in DA is open, free of charge, to any U.S. citizen residing in another country.

###

We welcome the media to attend on Thursday at Joe Kool’s! For more information or to schedule an interview, please phone or email us, and if you don’t reach us right away, be sure to leave your contact information and the best times for us to reach you.

Information about Democrats Abroad: www.democratsabroad.org

Official site of the Democratic National Convention: http://www.demconvention.com

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