You are on page 1of 11
©. VISION FOR A PROGRESSIVE AMERICA AND WHAT'S NEEDED TO GET THERE Spring 2019 ® VISION FOR A PROGRESSIVE AMERICA | SPRING 2019 1 2005, OUR COLLECTIVE IMAGINATION CREATED A COMMUNITY OF DONORS that vould think and invest together to build a strategic and coordinated progressive infrastructure to counter right wing dominance and establish a progressive majority. In its founding prospectus, the Democracy Alliance (A) wrote: ‘A consensus has emerged that the progressive cause would benefit greatly from a better informed ang networked community of progressive donors...the value proposition for alliance participants is that they can learn together; build relationships; invest more intelligently; invest collaboratively; monitor investments as part of 9 community of donors; and help to assure more generous support, over the Tong term, for the next generation of progressive leaders and more effective progressive organizations, ‘That prescient value proposition has been substantially achieved, More than $1.83 billion hhas been raised to build and sustain elements of the progressive infrastructure—from multi-issue think tanks to a sophisticated media monitoring ‘apparatus—that did not exist or were just being launched when the DA started Inmany states—though not enough, and not yet to the necessary scale—strong donor and ‘organizational tables have been built that have increased progressive power and influence. Many [progressive ideas and policies have achieved broad popular support. A critical mass of voters now agree with progressive values and ideals. ‘Our data, tools, and utilities have been effectively Used to mobilize voters and coordinate work {at the state and national evel. And electoral victories from 2006 to 2018 bear the stamp ‘of these coordinated investments made by DA Partners. ‘And yet, clearly our best efforts have fallen short. ‘Our country is enduring an almost unthinkable crisis of democracy that has at the same time ‘brought out the best—in the mobilization of milions and the creation of significant new organizations borne of resistance—and caused Us to look harder at our existing strategies, ‘organizations, and movements, We know tt ving electons-nhen we do while absolute! financed right wing. Our opponents have steadily undermined the legitimacy of government and key independent and nonpartisan institutions, allowing corporations and wealthy individuals to create legislative and structural impediments to a fair economy, functioning democracy, just and ‘equitable society, and rational environmental policy. ‘To alter these ratios of power and influence, we ‘must marshal strategic and financial resources with a sense of urgency. Since its beginning, the Democracy Alliance has paused every few years to survey the political ‘and cultural landscape and think through where ur invest ments—of funds, most importantly, ‘but also of other capital like convening power, relationships, and idea generation—should be ‘made in the future. We are at such a reflection point now. Baal Rel acid imbalance of power and influence, we must marshal strategic and inancial resources with a sense of urgency. We address our economy, democracy, climate, and equity together because they are deeply connected. ‘Our vision for the next phase of the DA's work We set forth here a proposed approach for builds on our past successes, learns from our ‘addressing each of these goals. In the sections ‘setbacks, and raises our sights higher to imagine that follow, we describe the problems we seek ‘what @ community of ike-minded progressive to address and offer a series of ideas and ‘donors is uniquely poised to accomplish together recommendations for how the DA can make {in the months and years ahead, significant progress in the coming years, What these recommendations have in common is: We seek an America where progressives hold the reins of power and use them to make a significant impact on several of our nation’s ‘greatest challenges: fixing our democracy, + They seek to bulld progressive power that produces electoral and policy victories. making the economy work for all, Building @ just. + They require sustained Investment in the and equitable society, and addressing climate kind of core infrastructure that the DA has cchange—while staying nimble and flexible to helped to build address emerging issues. + They require Investments In places and We address our economy, democracy, climate, eople—state-based infrastructure and core ‘and equity together because they are deeply progressive constituencies (or instance, connected. voters of color, young people, and single women), with greater attention to other Communities, such as rural voters and working families, who benefit from public Investment but many of whom have slipped away from the progressive coalition. We aspire to solidify a New American Majority that will stretch progressive reach, extend the electoral map, and become a sustainable source of progressive power. Climate disruption is a serious threat to prosperity, and we cannot act together to confront our economic and our climate challenges without a healthy democracy, At the ‘same time, radical economic inequality—the ‘most pronounced since the Gilded Age—eats at the foundations of @ democratic society; just as it erodes the sources of economic growth and "innovation necessary to reversing climate change. The continued virulence of racism, xenophobia ‘+ They emphasize collaborative efforts, Including pooled funds lke the State POWER Funds established by the DA in the last investment cycle, because alignment through collective action is the most promising path to sustainable change. While this document articulates goals and recommended investment approaches for “achieving them, the policy development, framing, and other

Related Interests