RELEASE: 70 Resistance Leaders Pledge to Fight to Rebuild America

Declaring Resistance Is Not Enough,
More Than 70 Progressive Leaders Pledge to Fight for
Agenda for Good Jobs, Sustainable Prosperity, and Economic Justice.

Group Calls On Other Americans to Sign Pledge to Work for
11 Point Platform for Economic Growth, Greater Equality.

Vow to Resist Trump and GOP, While Building Citizens’ Movement Needed to “Rebuild America.”



While vowing to continue to build the resistance movement against Donald Trump, more than 70 prominent progressives (see below) are publicly pledging to work for an 11 point economic agenda to produce “Good Jobs, Sustainable Prosperity and Economic Justice.”

Declaring “Resistance is not enough,” the more than 70 founding signers announced they would be inviting many more Americans to sign their Pledge and build public support for their economic agenda. “Real change begins with a clear and coherent vision of a better America, and with citizens’ movements dedicated to bringing that world into being,” they declared in the introduction to their agenda.

In an introduction to their 11 point economic platform, released today, the signers argue that “the system has been rigged” against working Americans for many decades – because “both major political parties have allowed the wealthy and the giant corporations to exercise far too much influence over the political decisions that shape American life.” They call for a citizen’s movement that will stand up to big money and fight for big economic changes that will build a prosperous and sustainable American economy, create economic growth and opportunity for all, and reverse inequality.

“President Trump has broken most of his populist promises from the campaign, and he and his corporate allies are making the US more unequal,” said one of the Pledge authors, Roger Hickey of the Campaign for America’s Future. He pointed out that most of the Pledge signers are leaders of the Resistance movement working hard to stop Trump. But he warned that “if Trump and the GOP majority in Congress were to disappear tomorrow, our society might become more civil and less dangerous, but we would still face the challenge of rebuilding our economy – after many decades of growing inequality and public paralysis. Today we are outlining a program for sustainable prosperity that will motivate the growing progressive electorate — and offer an alternative to some Trump voters who are now disappointed with the President.”

These progressives say they are realistic. They understand that electoral success in many mid-term elections will be fueled by anti-Trump energy. And they do not want their economic agenda to be rigidly used as a litmus test in all Congressional or local races. But they argue that no political party or candidate can win over the long term without a positive agenda for economic growth and prosperity. They envision a virtuous circle of competition within the Democratic party – with one or more candidate demonstrating the popularity of parts of their bold agenda for change. They cite the Bernie Sanders’ Medicare for All plan, which worked politically for Sanders in his Presidential campaign – and which now has the support of one third of Democratic Senators – including most of the among likely candidates for president.  And they point to polling that shows that most of the key economic agenda items they champion are very popular in polling.

The authors and signers say the vision statement is designed to stimulate constructive discussion and debate, and foster a new, winning unity. The pledge signers invoke the classic cautionary truth, “You can’t beat something with nothing.”

The 11-point platform starts with two planks aimed a “sustainable economic growth.” Drawing from the work of economist Joe Stiglitz and former Treasury Secretary Lawrence Summers, the group rejects the Trump strategy of tax cuts for the rich and giant corporations, they instead advocate a plan to address “secular stagnation” and to get the US economy ready to stimulate growth when the Obama recovery finally stalls.

The first two major agenda items call for serious public investment to
(1) create good jobs and rebuild US infrastructure and
(2) build a sustainable green economy by retooling the US energy system.

And to pay for this long-deferred investment, plank #(8) calls for reversing the Trump tax cuts to make corporations and the wealthy pay their fair share.

The group argues that their entire platform would reduce inequality – but they place major emphasis on working to targeting investment and achieving economic justice
(4) for communities harmed by racism and xenophobia and
(5) for women in the economy, in the workforce, and in the home

The platform also calls for (3) raising wages directly and establishing the rights of workers to form unions – and by curbing giveaways to CEOs and the top one percent.

A major part of the agenda aims at protecting and extending the New Deal – by establishing the social democratic reforms already won by other democracies:
(6) much-improved public education and free college for all
(7)Medicare for All and a strengthened social safety net and retirement security

The progressive platform also addresses two of the big causes of the great recession of 2008 and 2009, which was the result of runaway corporate globalization and a deregulated financial system that created a global speculative bubble which crashed the world economy when that bubble burst. The platform therefore calls for
(9) a global economic strategy for working people and
(10) a bank reform system to close the Wall Street casino

Finally, the group argues that addressing all their proposed economic reforms will require fundamental changes to (11) Rescue Democracy from the Special Interests.

Signers at:

Signers of Pledge to Fight for Sustainable Prosperity and Economic Justice:
Signers do so as individuals. Organizations listed for identification only.

Roger Hickey
Co-Director, Campaign for America’s Future

Janet Dewart Bell
Author, Lighting the Fires of Freedom: African American Women in the Civil Rights Movement

Larry Cohen
Board Chair, Our Revolution

Robert Borosage
Co-Director, Campaign for America’s Future

Heather D. Gautney
Associate Professor of Sociology, Fordham University (at Lincoln Center)

Richard Eskow
Writer and Zero Hour Host

Baye Adolfo-Wilson
Economic and Housing Development Advocate

Dedrick Asante-Muhammad
Racial Economic Equality Advocate

Nancy Altman
Social Security Works, President

Dean Baker
Center for Economic Policy Research, Co-Founder and Senior Economist

Krystal Ball
People’s House Project, President

Lara Bergthold

Angela Glover Blackwell
PolicyLink Equity Action Network

Robert A. Blecker
American Univ. Economics Department

Michael Brune
Sierra Club, Executive Director

Julie Burton
Women’s Media Center, President

Dan Cantor
Working Families Party

Charles Chamberlain
Democracy for America, Executive Director

Nita Chaudhary
UltraViolet Co-Founder

Donald Cohen
In the Public Interest, Executive Director

Chuck Collins
Institute for Policy Studies-Inequality Program

Maria Echaveste
Earl Warren Institute on Law and Social Policy, Policy Director

Christopher Edley Jr.
Opportunity Institute, Co-Founder & UC Berkeley Law School, Prof

Jennifer Epps-Addison
Center for Popular Democracy Network, President

Zack Exley
Brand New Congress

Jeff Faux
Economic Policy Institute, Founder

Jane Fonda
Actor, Writer, Activist

James K. Galbraith
LBJ School of Public Affairs at U of Texas at Austin, Professor

Anna Galland

Joseph Geevarghese
Good Jobs Nation

Leo Gerard
United Steelworkers, President

Eddie S. Glaude, Jr.
Princeton University Center for African-American Studies, Chair

George Goehl
People’s Action, Co-Director

Adam Green
Progressive Change Campaign Committee

Mark Winston Griffith
#Millions of Jobs

Sarita Gupta
Jobs With Justice, Executive Director & Caring Across Generations, Co-Director

LaDonna Harris
Americans for Indian Opportunity

Wenonah Hauter
Food & Water Watch, Executive Director

Jim Hightower
The Hightower Lowdown, Editor & Our Revolution Board

Leo Hindery, Jr.
Business Leader, Author, Civic Activist

Leah Hunt-Hendrix
Solidaire, Co-Founder

Saru Jayaraman
Restaurant Opportunities Centers United, Co-Founder

Alan Jenkins
The Opportunity Agenda, Executive Director

Jane Kleeb
Bold Alliance President, Our Revolution Board & Nebraska Dem Party Chair

Naomi Klein
Author, No Is Not Enough: Resisting Trump’s Shock Politics & Winning the World We Need

Thea Lee
Economic Policy Institute, President

Gabriela D. Lemus
Progressive Congress, President and Executive Director

Annie Leonard
Greenpeace USA, Executive Director

Michael Lighty
National Nurses United

Heather McGhee
Demos, President

Bill McKibben Founder, Author, Environmentalist

Manuel Pastor
USC Professor of Sociology / American Studies & Ethnicity

Robert Pollin
Political Economy Research Institute, Co-Director

Ai-jen Poo
National Domestic Workers Alliance, Director

Robert Reich
Former Secretary of Labor

Rashad Robinson
Color of Change, Executive Director

Charles Rodgers
New Community Fund, President

Hector Sanchez Barba
Nat. Hispanic Leadership Agenda, Chair & LCLAA, Exec. Dir.

Ilya Sheyman

Donna Smith
Progressive Democrats of America, Executive Director

Gloria Steinem
Author, Activist, and Co-founder, Women’s Media Center

Margery Tabankin
Philanthropic Advisor

Stephanie Taylor
Progressive Change Campaign Committee

Zephyr Teachout
Fordham U Law Professor and Anti-Corruption League

Shaunna Thomas
UltraViolet Co-Founder

Gloria Totten
Public Leadership Institute

Corbin Trent
Justice Democrats

Vien Truong
The Dream Corps #GreenForAll, CEO

Nina Turner
Our Revolution, President

Toni Van Pelt
National Organization for Women, President

Dorian Warren
Center for Community Change Action, President

Randi Weingarten
American Federation of Teachers, President

Robert Weissman
Public Citizen, President

Billy Wimsatt
Movement Voter Project and Gamechanger Labs

James Zogby
Arab American Institute, President



5 thoughts on “RELEASE: 70 Resistance Leaders Pledge to Fight to Rebuild America

  1. Dana Briggs

    And again, the elephant and donkey in the room is not addressed — ending perpetual war and dismantling the imperial war machine. Therefore, I will not support this.

  2. sandy sanders

    This is the Green Party Platform of 30 years ago Lite version. Why not back the Green Party Platform which already exists and has a Party that DESPERATELY needs capital and energy to draw votes? Are you shoehorning for the Dims? I see NO elected Dim signers. Not one of the Policies you script, which i totally agree with, have actually been entered as Legislation. If it has, then all of you any Dims that actually favor legislation like this NEED TO ADVOCATE AND PUBLICIZE THESE INITIATIVES UNTIL EVERY AMERICAN KNOWS ABOUT THEM AND HAS TIME TO ADD TO THE DIALOG AND PASS THIS AS LEGISLATION. I can say these policies were discussed in the 60’s and NO ONE within the mainstream since HAS ATTEMPTED TO PASS ANYTHING LIKE THIS.

    I have heard sales pitches like this my entire life by the oligarchic TwoParty that is OneParty for the 1%. If you all are real. Prove it. Write legislation for each of these Policy and Budget egalitarian initiatives, pass it on to elected officials and document their responses and actions and then inform the entire American public of each step. Make this universally known. Then turn this dysfunctional republic into a Policy ad Budget item by item voting direct democracy. We will then vote to make defense 10% of our income tax revenues and turn the other 50% back to Public Services. Elected officials will become paid legislative employees that implement our Policy and Budget directives or they will be fired and replaced.

    Until you all start advocating the above revocation of Commerce in favor of the social needs of humanity, it’s all just so much hot air.

    Until then.

  3. sandy sanders

    And… the real US problem since the 70’s, the detaxation of the 1%. The accumulative wealth accretion of these greedy selfish robbers in charge of Commerce Empire, must have limits on income, like $1m/, with proportional taxation rates like the 60’s and reparations toward 40+ years of stolen revenues and externalized costs of disaster capitalism so we can build a sustainable egalitarian society. Wanna leave? You can take $1m and go anywhere you want, but leave the rest and we will turn them over to worker democratic collectives to rebuild into socially responsible businesses.

  4. Maryellen Kurkulos

    So I too am struck by the absence of any mention of perpetual war, the yang to the ying of eroding the social fabric of this country. But the response can’t be a reactionary, sectarian one. ‘My way or the highway’ gets us nowhere. The response has to be calling out this shortcoming and linking it with the very real and tireless efforts of thousands across the country to the struggle to end war. The tools are being honed: join the struggle!!
    The people’s budget
    Poor people’s campaign
    Peace Action
    And more…
    If we turn our backs it is WE who are shirking our responsibilities to our fellow sisters and brothers. It’s well past time to get off our high horses and get to work.

  5. James S

    Dana, are not supporting things you agree with because one thing you support wasn’t mentioned?

    I think bringing about economic justice will require spending much less on the military and ‘the war machine’. I think this can be done without lessening our security. Actually our pursuit of foreign wars is what lessens our security more than anything IMO. The political right uses fear to create division among those who should be united behind the pledge made here. That may be why what you want isn’t part of the pledge. If it were in the pledge it would be seized on for propaganda purposes, to spread lies and create fear. Sadly there are many who should support the pledge out of self interest who would be swayed by fear from the lies the right would spread.


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