In addition to phone calls and emails to Congress, MoveOn.org and the PCCC worked with other groups to organize events in Congressional districts around the country that they said drew more than 20,000. American Dream Movement members also gathered Thursday on Capitol Hill to demand that Democrats stand their ground against deep spending cuts.
Democratic Members, including Rep. Jan Schakowsky (Ill.), urged activists to fight to protect Social Security and other government benefits.
“We believe in a country where after you’ve worked your whole life, you get to retire in the knowledge that your financial and health security will be met,” she said.NPR had a story about both progressive and rightwing response to the default crisis:
NAYLOR: Meanwhile, outside the Capitol, several hundred people turned out for a steamy noonday rally led by an assortment of progressive groups, from Planned Parenthood to MoveOn.org. A procession of Democratic lawmakers and other speakers made clear they were none too happy either with what was going on inside the Capitol.
John Gage, the president of the American Federation of Government Employees, said Congress had its priorities wrong.
JOHN GAGE: Here we are going into a debt crisis when we really have a jobs crisis.The Nation's media blogger noticed the difference in media coverage over the tiny Tea Party held nearby only a day before compared to the rally we held yesterday:
But then, Thursday’s American Dream rallyorganized by MoveOn, Rebuild the Dream, AFSCME, and AFGE, and featuring speakers like Van Jones, Rep. Keith Ellison, and Rep. Jan Schakowsky --clocked in an estimated 450-500 people (the permit’s limit), according to the coalition. Oddly, though, as of 24 hours later, Politico didn’t mention it. CNN.com, meanwhile, talked up the tea party rally both the day before it took place and afterward--when it spun the measly crowd (and its own pre-event notice) by writing: “Don't be fooled by the tiny turnout at the tea party rally on Capitol Hill Wednesday. The conservative movement doesn't much need rallies anymore. November 2010 changed all of that.”