#NebDemsNews – The Madness has Begun…

The Madness has Begun…

March is easily my favorite month of the year. Spring begins, I no longer feel the need to wear a jacket everyday, and I can fill my weekends with countless hours of watching the NCAA College Basketball Tournament.

Unfortunately, my bracket is already busted. I have somehow managed to be in the bottom 3.2% of brackets according to ESPN, which if you think about it, is almost as impressive as having an actually good bracket. I offer my thoughts and prayers to anyone who has somehow underperformed me.

However, there is some real madness occurring in Lincoln this week. On Friday, while most of Nebraska tunes in to watch Creighton in the big dance, the rights of Nebraska’s youth are up for debate in the state legislature.

Madness in the Legislature

State Senator Kathleen Kauth introduced LB574, titled the “Let Them Grow” Act. If passed, the bill would ban access to gender-affirming care for youth in Nebraska. In essence – the ironically titled “Let Them Grow” Act would prevent kids who are struggling with their gender identity from accessing the resources necessary for their well-being and growth.

Now, there’s no need to dance around this issue, let’s call a spade a spade. No matter your personal views on the matter, the idea that Senator Kauth wants to get government in the business of vital decisions between a child, their family, and loved ones, is frankly, authoritarian.

So much for the days of Republicans being the party of “small government” and “individual liberties.” Between the book bans across the nation, attacks on the LGBTQ+ community, and now, LB574, the conservative touting of their manifesto of limited government is starting to seem more and more hypocritical by the day.

The term used in the bill, “gendering affirming care,” is intentionally vague. Gender affirming care not only includes access to aspects of physical health for transgender youth, but also, access to mental health resources.

The opposition constantly asks why young people are leaving the state in record numbers, yet their time is spent denying childrens’ access to therapy and other mental health resources instead of trying to better the lives of all Nebraskans.

Every second spent debating the rights of our state’s youth could be used to afford economic opportunity to those in need, in a time where many Nebraskans are still struggling financially.

Fighting Hate with Progress: Leirion for Lincoln

While the madness is ongoing at the legislature, it is more important than ever to follow the sage advice of “don’t agonize, organize.”

Despite it being a conventional non-election year– it’s still an election year for some of us! Lincoln will be holding its city elections this spring, with the primary on April 4th and the general on May 2nd.

This election is a referendum on Democratic values in Nebraska. As we move into this election, it is vital for Democrats to win in Lincoln and build momentum going into 2024. Mayor Leirion has run a positive campaign focused on the tangible good that she has done for the city, while her opponent is bogged down in culture war battles in the state legislature.

I have to say– it is extremely refreshing to hear from a candidate who is attempting to disengage from the fray and focus on the positives. The fundamental reason we all care so much about politics is, at its core, because we want our lives and the lives of those we love to be better.

Mayor Leirion has reduced crime in Lincoln, increased clean energy, revitalized small business funds, and has worked to keep Lincoln Public Schools strong. There is a reason that Lincoln is one of the best places to raise a family in America – and it’s because of the Mayor’s people-driven approach to politics – not the culture wars that only intend to divide.

However, her opponent’s campaign is bankrolled by a certain wannabe cowboy Senator. Pete Ricketts and his cronies. They have funneled over a million dollars in this race, and unfortunately, those of us in Lincoln are seeing the consequences of that money everyday.

The Mayor’s opponent, Suzanne Geist, has used campaign money to prop her name up everywhere while she works tirelessly in the state legislature on the issues that truly matter to voters (not), like making it harder to vote and taking money away from our public schools. Between the endless negative mailers and a billboard on every corner, it feels impossible to escape Senator Geist’s vacuum of divisive culture war politics.

If I had a dollar for every time I saw a Geist for Mayor billboard, I might be as rich as Pete Ricketts by election day, and I assure you– I could use that money!

If you are looking for ways to help the NDP and Mayor Leirion’s campaign offset the million dollar donation from RickettsBuysLincoln LLC – your time, talent, or treasure would be greatly appreciated.

If you would like to donate your time and talent– sign up to volunteer here! We have phonebanks, textbanks, and canvassing opportunities– so no matter if you’re in Lincoln or not– you can contribute! The link also contains a schedule so that volunteers can plan accordingly!

If you would like to donate– click here! The NDP is putting in time and resources in order to send texts, get vote by mail applications out, and put a voter guide in the mailbox of every Democrat in the city!

The NDP will be hosting a yard sign drive-thru event for our Lincoln candidates on Saturday, April 15th! We encourage all residents of Lincoln to attend and come get yard signs– candidates from up and down the ballot will be there as well.

If you want to help fight against LB574, you can donate $35 or more here by March 31st, you will get an exclusive #NothingButTime shirt!

It has been a joy writing this, and I am genuinely thankful to each and every one of you who read this. Please reach out to jack@nebraskademocrats.org for any feedback, comments, or ideas! I would usually say Go Big Red– but go Blue Jays today!

All the best,

Jack Schiewe

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