New PSN Website and Reports Lay the Groundwork for 2009 State Action

New PSN Website and Reports Lay the Groundwork for 2009 State Action

Tuesday, November 11, 2008




New PSN Website and Reports Lay the Groundwork for 2009 State Action

With elections over and new progressive strength in many legislatures, voters will now be demanding that state leaders deliver, made all the more challenging given hard economic times and the laundry list of social problems we face.  

To assist in this task, Progressive States Network has launched an upgrade of its website to make it easier for legislators and advocates to find both past Dispatch information and additional resources we will be adding in coming months.  As well, we have new Policy Options reports that give more detailed analysis of policies that legislators may want to introduce in their states.

A New Website for PSN

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We invite you to check out PSN's new website at  While it is very much a work in progress, we hope it will make it easier for state leaders to access the wide variety of legislative and policy resources that Progressive States Network has archived over the three years of our existence, along with information from allied organizations that we highlight.   From health care to tax policy to election reform to technology issues to fighting foreclosures, our website aims to be a "first stop" destination for legislators and advocates, who can read about topics and find links to legislation enacted in other states, research reports, and the range of organizations available to support legislators looking to enact similar policies in their state.

Right now, the major content on the website is a reorganization of past Stateside Dispatch information in our new Policy Resources section organized around our key values of Rewarding Work, Valuing Families, Increasing Democracy, Promoting Justice, and a Growing Economy.  As we finish archiving all our past Dispatches by policy area, these will be supplemented with additional policy resources, making the site an expanding archive of information for legislators and advocates.   We encourage legislators and others to email us additional resources at

On the website, we track the technical support PSN offers legislators and advocates in Our Campaigns where PSN highights Strategic Services we provide from conference calls to events we sponsor to legislative updates (archives to appear shortly), as well as broad-ranging Political Strategy in promoting policy, including key Dispatch Strategy Items.  Most importantly, this website area highlights our Current Campaigns, issue areas where we are providing strategic support, including Wage Standards and Workplace Freedom, Balancing Work and Family, Health Care for All, Smart Growth and Green Jobs, Broadband Buildout and Technology Investments, Clean and Fair Elections, and Tax and Budget Reform, along with our State Immigration Project.

For tracking news from the states, the News & Analysis section with highlight current state updates from the Dispatch, News Links, Research Roundup,Eye on the Right, while our Press Room will track PSN Op-Eds, Press Releases and when PSN is In The News.  Our Publications section will host our major Reports, Stateside Dispatch archives and other PSN-written policy materials.   Finally, while it's pretty bare bones now, we will be filling out our In Your State sections with key policy and legislative information about each state.

Upgrading the website completely is a major ongoing project and we appreciate your patience as we fill in empty sections with materials from our own archives and allied organizations.   But in the meantime, we hope it provides useful support for your legislative work and we welcome additional feedback and features and resources that would make it more useful for you.

New Reports: New Policy Options for 2009

More immediately, Progressive states has published a series of publications outlining key policy options for promoting progressive policy in 2009. 

Our Building a Progressive Majority in the States: Policy Options for 2009 outlines both the political challenges and opportunities facing progressive leaders and surveys key policies worth pursuing in each of seven strategic policy areas where PSN is providing strategic support to legislators in the states.  It provides a broad messaging background on issue issue area, a list of key policies to promote progressive solutions, and links to key resources to help implement each one.


We have also developed more in-depth reports on particular policy areas, complete with analyses, messaging, details on model legislation enacted in states around the country, and resources to help legislators and advocates move those policies in your own state.  These include:

Health Care for All: Policy Options for 2009 provides four sets of policies to help state legislators and advocates build proposals and political strategies to challenge the self-interests of the health care industry and successfully move health care reform.  These include Affordable, Quality Health Care for All, Strategies to Extend Coverage to Uninsured, how to Improve Quality and Cut Health Care Costs, and how to Stop Health Care Industry Profiteering. 


Clean and Fair Elections: Policy Options for 2009 provides policies to overcome the continual election day frustrations and disasters faced by many voters and reduce the power of corporate interests.  Policies outlined would Reduce the Influence of Money in Politics, Grow the Electorate, Make Every Vote Count, enact National Popular Vote, and Resist Vote Suppression by Right-Wing.

Broadband and Technology Investments: Policy Options for 2009 highlights policies to jumpstart economies to confront the challenges of the 21st century while overcoming the digital divide leaving many in our communities behind.  These policies would promote deployment of a Universal and Affordable High-speed Internet, Increase Technology Literacy and Inclusion for all communities, Leverage Technology for Economic Development, Health, Energy and Educational Opportunities, and promote Local Investments for Technology-Based Growth.


Tax and Budget Reform: Policy Options for 2009 addresses the need for a strong commitment to funding both social services and the long-term investments needed for economic growth, while addressing the glaring inequalities in our state tax systems.  It outlines strategies and policies to Make Tax Systems More Progressive, Fix Failed Economic Development and Tax Subsidies and Reform Government Contracts and Restrict Privatization.


State Immigration Project: Policy Options for 2009 provides strategies for dealing with the anti-immigrant attacks by the right, while highlighting proactive policies to address voter concerns about better integrating new immigrants into our communities.   This includes policies to promote Wage Law Enforcement as Immigration Policy, promote Immigrant Integration and Naturalization through better education and coordination of services, highlighting new approaches to Immigrants and Public Benefits, and promoting better Voting Reform against the "Voter ID" Attacks of the right, and promoting Immigrant Outreach as a Public Safety and Anti-Terror Policy.

Deepening the Progressive Majority in 2009

Progressives did well at the polls overall on Election Day, but that still means progressive leaders need to deliver real change, especially as we face a tough recession, and we still need to make the case for progressive leadership in many parts of the countries where progressives are still working to build majorities.  

These new resources from Progressive States Network, both the website and these reports, are one way we hope to help on that work.  As always, as legislators or advocates are working to enact progressive policy, our staff and allied organizations stand ready to assist you before and during legislative sessions with technical, research and messaging assistance to strengthen your capacity. 

Feel free to call our office at (212) 680-3116 to contact any of our policy or media specialists or email us at with questions or requests for support.

3 Steps Forward

1. Obama expected to back California "clean cars" auto-emission waiver
2. OR: Ore. governor ready to roll on job-creating roads plan
3. US: States cushion slumping economy through continued spending


The Stateside Dispatch is written and edited by:

Nathan Newman, Policy Director
Caroline Fan, Immigrant and Workers' Rights Policy Specialist
Julie Schwartz, Broadband and Economic Development Policy Specialist
Christian Smith-Socaris, Election Reform Policy Specialist
Kayla Southworth, Privatization and Contractor Accountability Policy Associate
Adam Thompson, Health Care Policy Specialist
Austin Guest, Communications Specialist
Marisol Thomer, Outreach Coordinator


Please shoot us an email at if you have feedback, tips, suggestions, criticisms, or nominations for any of our sidebar features.

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