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The Merkley Campaign recently hosted house parties all across the state in an effort to rally supporters for the upcoming Senate election. DNC chairman Howard Dean called in to the house parties via conference call to weigh in on the Oregon Senate race. Dean had some choice words for the Republican Party and spoke about how critical the Senate race in Oregon is. More below the fold....

Full disclosure, I am the netroots director for OR-Sen candidate Jeff Merkley

I'm grateful that Howard Dean took the time to call in to the house parties and show his support for Jeff Merkley. Here's what he had to say:

I really like Jeff Merkley. I got to know him over the fight for the civil unions bill. I think America votes their values. They vote their values even more than they do issues. I have full confidence in his abilities as a United States Senator.

I think American people are sick of the Republicans, honestly. They put their party ahead of the people. I think we’re going to beat the hell out of them.

We have to have Jeff in the Senate. In order for us to get to the number we need to, we have to have Oregon. This is a critical seat, it's critical for the future of the country, because we can't control the Senate without it. You see now that even Mitch McConnell is able to muster those forty votes that he needs to block renewable energy, practically every piece of progressive legislation.

Howard Dean hit the nail on the head. If we don't pick up enough seats in the Senate we're going to have a hard time getting any progressive reforms pushed through Congress. But, if we increase our majority and elect people like Jeff Merkley, who has proved he's got serious legislative skills and is progressive, we have a much better shot as passing real reforms. If we can get sixty votes in the Senate we have a better shot at...

Ending the Iraq War
Passing Universal Health Care
Making SERIOUS investments in alternative energies and mass transit
Making college more affordable
Protecting families by regulating lenders
Making it easier for workers to form unions

And on and on.....

Before Howard Dean spoke to supporters via the house party conference call, OR-Sen candidate and current House Speaker Jeff Merkley talked about the battle to regain our country. Here's what he had to say:

This election is about ending the war in Iraq. This is about creating affordable, accessible health care for every American. This is about ending our dependence on foreign oil and having an energy policy that serves not only our foreign policy, but our economy and helps tackle global warming. This is a battle over the type of economy we have, and whether we recreate living wage jobs or continue to lose them overseas.

This is a battle over returning and restoring the integrity of the United States of America. On everything from having a government that believes in having science in scientific papers rather than having that science taken out. To the fourth amendment on wiretapping and privacy, to defending Habeas Corpus to ending our association with secret prisons and torture. That's not the America we believe in and those are not the American policies that make us strong in the world.

We need to take this nation back and have a nation that works for working people again. And, not a government by the powerful and for the powerful.

Jeff is the kind of Democrat we desperately need in the Senate. If you'd like to help oust Republican Gordon Smith and replace him with Jeff Merkley, I set up an Act Blue page for Kossacks so you can flex your monetary muscles. Or, if you live in Oregon and want to help out the campaign, we'd love to have you volunteer!

Originally posted to sarahlane on Fri Aug 22, 2008 at 04:15 PM PDT.

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