Hi, Jack and Jill Politics readers! This is my first time posting here, so I wanted to introduce myself. I’m James Rucker, executive director of ColorOfChange.org. You may have heard about our work on this blog, and my guess is that many of you are ColorOfChange members.

We’re all big fans of Jack and Jill Politics at ColorOfChange, and we’ve collaborated on various campaigns with JJP ever since we joined forces back in spring 2007, along with many other Black bloggers, to stop the CBC’s partnership with Fox News for a presidential debate (a campaign we won). The blog posts here at JJP and the conversations they generate in the comments have been a consistent source of insight and inspiration for us at ColorOfChange, so we’re really excited to have the opportunity to be more directly involved in this community.

Now, on to the topic at hand. We recently launched a petition to confront the six Republican Governors who are rejecting funds from the stimulus pacakage. Last week Governor Sanford of South Carolina doubled down on this cynical strategy, and we’ve decided to step up the pressure. Here’s the message we sent this morning to the 28,000 signers of our petition to Republican govenors:

You recently joined us in calling out the six Republican Governors who are threatening to reject federal money for unemployment assistance. But now, Governor Mark Sanford of South Carolina is going even further with this shameful political posturing — he’s also trying to block $700 million for schools and public safety in his state. It could mean up to 7,500 teachers in South Carolina losing their jobs.

Flooding Sanford’s office with phone calls will send a strong message that people across the country are outraged — and we’ll make sure the media knows about it. Can you make a quick phone call? It takes just a minute — we’ll provide you with the number and brief script you can use:


We’ve been tying up the lines all day — more than 400 ColorOfChange members have already called. Will you join us?

Here’s the rest of our email to members this morning:

As people in South Carolina struggle with this economic downturn, Gov. Sanford is sending a clear message — he cares more about his political career than about helping the people in his state. Sanford is trying to please the most extreme conservatives in the Republican party by saying he’d rather use the money to pay down part of South Carolina’s debt. That may sound good to some people, and it may help his chances at winning the Republican primary in 2012. But it would do absolutely nothing to stimulate the state’s economy, which is among the hardest-hit in the nation.

In South Carolina, Republicans and Democrats alike see through Gov. Sanford’s grandstanding. In fact, a Republican state senator is leading the fight to overrule the Governor and accept the federal stimulus money.

Schools in South Carolina can’t afford for thousands of teachers to lose their jobs — and neither can America’s economy. Our country’s economic recovery depends on saving jobs, which is why every American should be outraged by Gov. Sanford’s actions.

Please take a moment to call Governor Sanford’s office today:


Thanks and Peace,

— James, Gabriel, Clarissa, William, Dani and the rest of the ColorOfChange.org team

March 16th, 2009

From the press release we sent out today:

“As people in South Carolina struggle with this recession, Governor Sanford has decided to stand in the way of the help,” said Rucker. “It’s obvious even to Republicans in South Carolina that this has nothing to do with what’s best for the state — it’s all about scoring political points.”

“Schools in South Carolina can’t afford for thousands of teachers to lose their jobs, and neither can America’s economy,” Rucker continued. “But it seems like Governor Sanford thinks that currying favor with the far right of his political party is more important than stopping the economic bleeding.”

Thanks for reading. Let us know what you think in the comments — we’d love to hear from you.

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