Greetings Daily Kos!

Since I was elected to the U.S. Senate two years ago, I’ve learned a few key things:

First, it’s absolutely imperative to have progressive Senators in the Democratic Party who stand by their values and don’t back down to the big corporate interests.

Second, the Senate has become a dysfunctional institution where the Republican Party spends their time abusing the rules by blocking debate, filibustering legislation and even preventing nominees from getting hearings.

In order to change business as usual in Washington and pass strong, not watered down legislation, we need to elect more progressives to the Senate.  Last week I launched the Proven Progressives campaign to help elect candidates who share my progressive values and desire to change Washington.  Barbara Boxer, Jack Conway, Chris Coons, Russ Feingold, Paul Hodes and Patty Murray are all facing tough races against radical Republicans and need our help.

Their opponents want to take away a woman’s right to choose and believe that the best way to get our economy back on track is by giving tax cuts to millionaires and billionaires and letting Wall Street write its own rules.  We know that the failed Republican trickle-down policies of the past only served to help the rich get richer at everyone else's expense.  

In order to pass progressive policies that will put working families first, I’m asking you to join me and help elect six Proven Progressives.  And, in the spirit of healthy competition, I’ve committed to donate the maximum allowed from my Opportunity and Renewal PAC to the candidate with the most individual donations by October 6th.  Will you join me in this campaign and help strengthen the progressive voice in the Senate?

This election could mean the difference between handing power to radical Republicans who think Social Security is unconstitutional or electing Senators who will stand up to big oil and the corporate machine.  Visit my www.ProvenProgressives.com today and show your support for these deserving candidates.  My goal is to raise $25,000 for these Proven Progressives so that they can effectively fight back against their extremist Republican opponents.

Lastly, I want to thank the Daily Kos community for continually advocating for Congress to do better.  You hold our feet to the fire and it’s definitely needed!  And, thanks so much for the passion and energy you put toward electing Democrats who share your values. You really help make a difference.

Originally posted to Jeff Merkley on Thu Sep 30, 2010 at 12:44 PM PDT.

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