Peace Action and Peace Action Education Fund’s 2013 Campaign Plans
The political frame of our work is building a new, more peaceful, less militaristic U.S. foreign policy based on democracy, human rights, justice and sustainability. This framework can help us reach new audiences, members, supporters and coalition partners, especially in our Move the Money campaign and, potentially, a new campaign of boycott and divestment targeting corporations invested in nuclear weapons.
Organizational Development Priorities for 2013: Goals: Increase integration between organizing, educational, legislative and organizational development efforts. Promote more effective collaboration between and among the affiliate network and national office for greater national impact. Realize a net increase of national PA/PAEF members and donors by at least 5% to approximately 10,200, also continue increase in the number of major donors. Realize a net increase of at least 5% in national PA/PAEF Action Alert e-subscriber list to approximately 71,000.
Key Strategies and Tactics:
-Implement initiatives for consistency in building the member/donor base, including major donors and online donors, building online e-activist lists, recruiting new affiliates, chapters and associate member organizations.
-Continue process of more coordination of campaign efforts from local to national level for bigger PA political impact.
-Also, related to this, continue to improve regular member/donor data exchanges between national PA and affiliates.
– Continue to work with affiliates on win-win joint fundraising, member/donor acquisition and list-building strategies. Conduct pilot projects in Massachusetts and New Jersey, as well as other one-time or ad hoc efforts with other affiliates. – Schedule next round of organizational development retreats for late summer and fall. Proposed regions: Big Sky Country (West Coast, Rocky Mountain. Great Plains & Southwest) and Mid-Atlantic/Upper South.
– Continue ongoing consultation and support for affiliates on organizational development priorities by national staff, and also affiliate to affiliate skill-share collaborations.
– Coordinate communications and media work jointly with affiliate network with focus on the letter to the editor/op-ed campaign. Affiliates agreed to set goals for number of LTEs & op-eds based on the North Carolina Peace Action campaign model. A conference call briefing with North Carolina leaders will be held. Work closely with allies and media consultants on placement of LTEs and op-eds. Key is targeting Senators/Representatives in the content as part of Congressional pressure work.
Program Priorities for 2013
I. Move the Money/Cut Pentagon spending – Policy Goal: Cut Pentagon budget by at least 25%.
Campaign overview: A multiyear process to fulfill the Peace Action’s Long Range Strategic Plan which says, “Cutting unnecessary and self-defeating military spending will enable us to free up resources to address our real needs at home—decent jobs, quality schools for our children, universal health care, affordable housing, and a sustainable environment. In short, reordering our nation’s priorities–away from militarism and towards peace and justice–will make the world safer and our lives better.
• Organizing alliances and coalitions to build pressure on Congress.
• Promote grassroots organizing to demilitarize the federal budget as a critical step towards de-militarizing foreign policy.
• Develop local and national initiatives to promote solutions, programs and research into the transition from an economy dependent on military corporations for good jobs to a sustainable, green economy.
Federal budget debate: Prioritize engagement in the federal budget debate from national to local level. Provide materials and information for local organizing, which is focused on joining with allies in the environment, faith-based labor, economic, immigrant and racial justice groups to change national spending priorities.
Legislative and electoral action: Build support for Congressional Progressive Caucus alternative budget, Balancing Act, Audit the Pentagon Act and amendments to National Defense Authorization Bill that cut Pentagon spending and the SANE Act (or other bills introduced) to cut money for nuclear weapons. Target key members of Congress with LTEs/op-eds, lobbying, town hall meetings, etc. Begin to prepare for 2014 Congressional mid-term elections. Promote local Move the Money resolutions and work with local elected officials.
Promote initiatives that spur on federal action to transition to a “new economy” focused on workers and their communities who are impacted by cuts in the Pentagon budget. Develop special ways to circulate the “jobs transition” proposal by the Institute for Policy Studies.
Alliance building: Strengthen and initiate relationships with a core group of economic and racial justice groups, environmental and labor on national and local levels. Continue to build the New Priorities Network, work with the Budget Priorities Working Group and join coalitions that emerge in the course of the federal budget fights. Serve as U.S. coordinator for the Global Day of Action on Military Spending on April 15, Tax Day. Maintain a Wiki to record our progress,
Base building: Conduct yearlong campaign with goals on LTE and Op-eds. Plan a series of webinars to promote common messaging. Continue the Move the Money trainings with National Priorities Project with a focus on targeted Congressional districts and to strengthen the work of Peace Action affiliates. Develop or participate in one online campaign to build Peace Action elists.
Produce and organize a national distribution of the Fund our Communities yard signs designed in 2012. Produce a Move the Money promotional brochure. Create a Wiki site to share new materials, presentations, articles and other resources as well as collect information on progress in local organizing.
II. Ending the war in Afghanistan – Policy Goals: advocate earlier withdrawal (than the president’s timeline of the end of 2014); oppose enduring presence of up to 25,000 troops for a decade. Support legislation to fund Afghanistan civil society-led development efforts.
Legislative action: Focus on pressuring the administration regarding residual forces – no decision made yet on how many troops/contractors will be staying behind; originally 25,000 was the number floated around – now 0 – 15,000 = somewhat of win and clearly open to public opinion. – Pressure Congress to tell the president: no contractors or troops left behind.
– Support Rep. Barbara Lee’s legislation: HR 200, Responsible End to the War in Afghanistan Act (same as previous) – 70 co-sponsors last session – Goal: at least 100 – Support various amendments in the authorization and appropriation processes regarding quicker troop withdrawal, no residual forces or permanent bases and support for Afghan-led development – Keep Afghanistan in the media
-Continue to lead Afghanistan Policy Working Group
III. Stopping Drone Warfare and Surveillance
Legislative action: Top 3 ideas for action or Congressional pressure: 1. Call on Congress for more transparency on the decision making process of the administration/Pentagon/CIA on how/when drones are used (the military and CIA have separate drone campaigns). 2. Get armed drones out of CIA completely. 3. Bring up this issue in the media in a more in-depth way. Media paying more attention as are members of Congress.
Base building and alliance building: main tactics are public education and media work. Participate in and promote April Days of Action against drones, targeting bases, corporations and universities engaged in drone warfare and research.
IV. Building Peace with Iran – Policy Goals: Build support for diplomacy, prevent military intervention and end sanctions that hurt the Iranian people.
– Legislative Action: Build support for Rep. Barbara Lee’s Diplomacy with Iran legislation. Oppose AIPAC legislative proposals designating Israel as a “major strategic ally” of the U.S. and calling for U.S. support if Israel attacks Iran.
-Media Action Opportunities: – Next round of P5+1 talks Feb. 26; Op-eds before, during, after talks and LTE on stories on need for diplomacy.
-Netanyahu put summer deadline on Iran halting enrichment – may be stepping back from this so watch as gets closer, again mostly a media opportunity.
– Weapons of Mass Destruction Free Zone in the Middle East conference to be held in Finland has not yet been rescheduled, we’ll support if and when it happens. Possible NGO side summit we might promote and participate in, otherwise mostly a media opportunity.
V. Nuclear Disarmament
1. Campaign Goals
A. Radically Downsize the Budget for Nuclear Weapons “Modernization” of the Production Complex and Delivery Systems
Cutting the Nuclear Weapons Complex
-Stop construction of new nuclear weapons facilities that would increase nuclear weapons production capacity, the CMRR at Los Alamos, NM, and the UPF at Oak Ridge, TN.
-Stop Life Extension Programs for obsolete weapons, or that would make changes to a warhead giving it new capabilities, such as LEPs for the B61 and the W78.
-Increase funding for dismantlement and increase dismantlement rates.
-Stop the MOX fuel fabrication program and construction of the fuel fabrication facility.
-Redirect funding from MOX to and increase funding for genuine nonproliferation programs.
Cutting Boondoggle Delivery Systems
-Cut funds for the planned fleet of 80-100 new long-range bombers
-Cut funds for the planned fleet of 12 new ballistic (SSBNX) submarines
B. Obama Administration Executive Actions
- Push the Obama administration to issue a nuclear “policy directive” that moves nuclear policy towards a nuclear weapons free world
- Have the President direct the Pentagon to change targeting requirements and take the nuclear alert posture off of hair trigger alert.
- Push the Obama administration to start negotiations with Russia that reduce nuclear weapons stockpiles further, and include all types of nuclear weapons (e.g. tactical and reserve)
- Push the Obama administration and members of Congress to keep emphasis on the ultimate goal of getting to zero.
- Push the administration to quickly get to New Start Stockpile Levels
2. Strategies, Outputs, Activities
Increase congressional support for changing priorities in the nuclear weapons budget, cut funding for facilities and programs that undermine nonproliferation and disarmament, and increase/preserve increases for nonproliferation and disarmament.
A. Leadership Strategy:
- Build robust grassroots/grasstops coalitions in districts to push MOCs with credibility to become stronger champions on nukes spending, new “Markeys” (First half of the year, tell MOCs how to take pro-active steps. Lay groundwork for specific decisions made (e.g. amendments to cut money) in second half of the year)
Possible Targets:Rep. Loretta Sanchez, Rep. Adam Smith, Rep. Marcy Kaptur, Democratic Senators
- Letter to the President supporting the Prague Agenda
- Author Dear Colleagues about further cuts
- Dear Colleagues to Committees recommending specific cuts?
- Introduce Legislation
- SANE Act Style?
- More specific short list of cuts?
- Topline number cut?
- Introduce Amendments in Committees/Floor
- OpEds around nuclear or budget hooks in news
- Find new grasstops, build list of in-district assets
- Travel into the district to meet in person
- Set up and attend in-district meetings with MOCs/Staff
- Set up Virtual Lobby meetings with DC Staff
- Group Sign-on letters
- Phonebanking: push calls into the MOCs office
- Keep indistrict assets informed on breaking news, opportunities to weigh in with MOCs
- Sample Email alerts, press releases, postcards, other advocacy resources
- Educational events
- Media events
B. Budget-Power Targets/ Grassroots Pressure Strategy
- Build constituent contact in districts to push MOCs that are targets of the larger nukes budget campaign. Pressure them to support the targeted cuts prioritized by the nukes budget campaign. (Second half of the year- Committee decisions on Approps/Authorization bills, push to get votes on bills/amendments.)
- Targets Sens Corker & Alexander, Sen Def Approps, House Def Approps
- Get Committees to vote for cuts (less likely on the Floor)
- Introduce amendments in Committee
- Find grasstops, build list of in-district assets, relationships from New START efforts
- Nationwide In-district lobby days
- Focus on grasstops in target districts having in-district meetings w/ MOCs/staff
- OpEds/LTEs in local media
- Phonebanking: paid or coordinated phonebanking into district before committee votes with general message
- Group Sign-on letters
- Keep in-district assets informed on breaking news, opportunities to weigh in with MOCs
- Sample Email alerts, press releases, postcards, other advocacy resources
Possible New “Don’t bank on the Bomb” Boycott/Divestment Campaign
National PA/PAEF staff, in consultation with affiliate leaders and our Nuclear Disarmament Strategy Group, will decide in the first half of 2013 whether to launch a new boycott/divestment campaign targeting not only nuclear weapons corporations, but the companies that finance them. If we go forward the campaign would likely be a mostly educational, public relations, online/social media campaign. It could have two possible levels: a “broad brush” listing of all companies in the Don’t Bank on the Bomb report, and also a more targeted approach (Bank of America or Wells Fargo and TIAA-CREF, for example). The campaign would afford us possible opportunities to build alliances with other boycott/divestment or corporate accountability campaigns and perhaps bring new folks into nuclear disarmament work.
VI. Peace Voter
–Participate in special elections such as helping Rep. Markey in his Senate race in Massachusetts. Be prepared for other possible special election opportunities.
–Fundraise for Peace Action PAC.
–Plan and prepare for 2014.