|Midterm Elections 2006|
The midterm elections of 2006 promise to be an exciting time for activists and politicians alike. With many divisive issues facing our nation, citizens are poised to cast votes on November 7, 2006 to support candidates that will better respond to their views and hopes for a better domestic and foreign policy.
The 109th Congress was an exciting time for SOA Watch with a historic vote taking place on the floor of the House of Representatives. On June 9, 2006, Rep. Jim McGovern (D-MA) introduced an amendment to the Foreign Operations Appropriations Bill that would have cut funding for the notorious School of the Americas (SOA), renamed the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation (WHINSEC). While the amendment failed by a vote of 188 ? 218, the close vote indicated the power of grassroots lobbying to influence key leaders in one of the most conservative Congresses in recent memory.
Now that Members of the House have gone on the record with their votes for and against this amendment, this is your chance to make the closing of the SOA/ WHINSEC a key issue in the 2006 midterm elections!
Below you will find a series of educational tools and resources to help you influence the candidates in your congressional districts to support this important issue.
Your vote matters! This year, political candidates in many districts across the nation are in tight races and each vote for a supporter of closing the SOA/ WHINSEC will have a direct impact on our successes in the 110th Congress. Take the time to vote on November 7, 2006 and make your vote a vote against torture and in support of candidates who support human rights and justice for Latin America.
FIRST THINGS FIRST, BE READY TO VOTE!Make sure that you know the polling location where you are registered to vote and early voting dates. The League of Women Voters Election Site has this information and more including information on the candidates, electronic voting machines, and voting registration.
DIVE IN WITH SOME EASY RESEARCHDid your member of the House vote for or against the June 2006 amendment to cut funding for the SOA/ WHINSEC? Check the Roll Call vote results. Many members of the House also showed their support for a suspension of the school during an investigation of its practices by cosponsoring HR 1217. Check the cosponsor list to see if your member was a cosponsor of the bill.
If your member was a supporter in the 109th Congress, show YOUR support by getting involved with their campaign and supporting them on November 7, 2006. If your member of Congress voted against the amendment, this is your chance to hold your representative accountable! Representatives in office should follow the wishes of their constituents because their job is to represent your interests in Washington D.C. and in Congress. Check out the links below for researching the candidates in your district and tips on making the SOA/ WHINSEC an issue in your election:
SEND A LETTER TO YOUR CANDIDATEIt is important that we, the people, educate our candidates about the issues that we feel strongly about. It is also important that we take an active role in our communities and remind our candidates that they are working for us, to defend our rights, to serve those who elect them.
Download, fill out and send a Letter to your Candidate urging her/him to support legislative efforts to defend human rights in Latin America.
***SOA Watch is a non-partisan organization that does not make candidate or party endorsements. The purpose of providing this information is to inform the public, educate the candidates, and shift the terms of debate.
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