It was an amazing weekend - we saw Americans across the country taking to the streets in support of healthcare reform. We saw many organizations coming together to tell Congress to get back to work and pass a real healthcare reform bill.
And even though the media is still trying to spin this as an equal contest between right wing reform opponents coming out to disrupt, and the mass of Americans who just want Congress to fix our broken health insurance system now - well, the facts are hard to argue with:
YallaDog's great photoblog explains that although the tea party crowd showed up, they were seriously outmatched:
You will be pleased to know that just our overflow crowd out numbered the loons and factually-challenged by about 5 or 6 to 1. One of the organizers told me that they had about 1500 seats available in all the locations and more than 3 times that number showed up.
And in Orlando, Florida, 1,100 people from all walks of life:
Unlike the numerous town-hall meetings and tea parties that popped up opposing reform, the rally demonstrated support for President Barack Obama's call to reform the nation's health-insurance system.
Organizers estimated more thanthat about 1,100 people, many of whom were members of unions and religious and retiree groups, attended the event at the Orlando Downtown Recreation Complex near the Amway Arena.
Check out more photos at healthcare09.
In New York's Times Square, more than 3000 gathered, having walked from all five boroughs - and bria and casperr were there to document with amazing photos.
And of course the hundreds in Portland (h/t Anima), and yes, 800 in Fargo of all places.
But wait there's more: OFAonthebus, drawing crowds across the country:
These crowds come on the heels of last night's 1,500-plus reformers gathering in Denver, Thursday's 1,000 plus rally in Albuquerque and another 1,100 on Wednesday night in Phoenix -- all part of Organizing for America's national bus tour.
Not to mention 2000 in St. Louis last night.
Tonight is Indianapolis, with Columbus, Pittsburgh, Charlotte, and Raleigh to follow.
Follow the bus on Twitter: @OFAOnTheBus
What are you waiting for? Get your sign and get out there.
And here's how --
In just six days, the Congressional district working period ends and our representatives head back to DC to determine the fate of health care reform. We need to stand up and be counted, get out there and show our support for real reform. We all know that America can't wait another 20 years for reform. This is our chance, and we need to stand up for people, and make sure our voices are louder than the insurance companies and crazy town-hall shriekers.
But we can't just sit around and wait for other people to do it for us.
Over the past week, a group of fellow DailyKos diarists and I have been counting down to September 4th, and the end of the Congressional district working period. We're working hard to spread the word about these events and encourage all y'all to get out there! Bring a sign, bring a picnic, bring your kids! It doesn't matter, just get out there and show your support for people-driven health care reform.
Get out to a town hall if there's one near you. Teabaggers are still planning to protest these events, especially as momentum turns in our favor. Get out where you are and make sure that real reform outnumbers crazy obstructionism.
Find a Town Hall near you, stand up and be counted, and make it clear that there are more of us who desperately need reform than want it to fail. FireDogLake has a fantastic Town Hall Tracker keeping abreast of events. Click Here to find a Town Hall near you!
Plug in your location, and you'll likely find plenty of opportunity to speak your mind on health care reform! (Be sure to also search the OFA events tracker to maximize your chances of getting the full list)
There are over 2000 HCAN events scheduled! That means there must be something near you. If you can't make it out to a town hall, head out to one of these huge rallies and make sure you show the numbers are on our side! Click Here to search HCAN's website.
Here are some upcoming events:
Let's Get It Done Health Care Rally, with Rep. McDermott
Meany Hall, University of Washington
Let's Get It Done Health Care Rally
Rally For Real Health Care Reform
Health Care Can't Wait Rally
San Francisco, CA
Congressional Send Off Rally San Francisco
San Francisco City Hall
Health Care Can't Wait Rally
Let's Get It Done: Health Insurance Reform Now Rally!
Houston City Hall Reflecting Pool
Georgia Rally For The Public Option
Georgia State Capitol
Health Care Can't Wait Rally
Rep. Pingree's Office
Organizing for America is also hard at work to engage citizens and make sure we all have a voice in health care reform. Head over to the "on the ground" page at my.barackobama.com and find an event. Click here to search for meetings, phonebanks, sign-making parties and more near you!
We can't achieve real reform without you! Get out there this week, and make sure you're counted in favor of real health care reform!
(Have an event for the Rally Report? Email us (with the link, please) at RallyReport(at)gmail.com. You can also send us links to photos or video or your local blog reports about events for us to highlight.)
Finally, if you want to learn how to get more involved in taking action on healthcare, join us - the new Netroots for Healthcare campaign. Netroots for Healthcare is a chance for us to stand up for the domestic policy "holy grail" - passing a healthcare reform bill that finally addresses the critical failings of the current system. 19.5 years. On average, a window of political opportunity on healthcare opens every 19.5 years. That's how long we might wait for the chance to fix healthcare to come around again.
My fellow N4HC diarists and I are going to focus on the what, the how and the why -- what is in the legislation, how you can help get it passed, and why it matters. We are following the lead of Healthcare for America Now (HCAN), a broad-based Democratic coalition that supports legislation consistent with ten key principles. One of these is a public option. But the rest are critically important too, and we want to make sure that we get the whole package across the finish line.
Yes we can win this. Together.
Want to stay updated about healthcare action items? Follow us on Twitter: @Netroots4HC or join Netroots for Healthcare.