Yesterday, in spite of Paul Hackett’s narrow loss to Jean Schmidt, Democrats accomplished something important. Schmidt’s “victory” was by less than a 5 percent margin in a district Republicans have easily won for years and her party had to pull out all the stops and spend more money than they’d expected just to squeak through with a narrow victory. As Chris Bowers wrote last Friday, even going into the election, this campaign was already a success. Last night, Kos reminded us of the real significance of the Ohio 02 race:  “It’s a new day for the Democratic Party, one in which no Republican district is safe.”

So, no matter how you look at it, the grassroots and the blogosphere came through in a big way during this special election. There is talk of “what’s next”, and for the most part what I’ve seen has focussed on the ’06 elections. But there is a challenge coming much sooner than that. Since we are dedicated to the notion of leaving no race uncontested, I can’t imagine we would be willing to settle for a weak, anemic response to the upcoming “Justice Sunday II” event.
Bush has already made the arrogant, petulant move of installing Bolton as U.S. Ambassador while Congress was in recess. In typical Veruca Salt, “I want the whole world, I want it now” fashion, the “Christian” right is now sheduling another whine-fest. "Justice Sunday II – God Save the United States and this Honorable Court!" is scheduled for Sunday, August 14. I’m not sure how many here are aware of this, but on the date of the first “Justice Sunday”, Drive Democracy responded with a Freedom AND Faith Rally. What better way to counter the charge that Democrats wanted to “filibuster people of faith than with the voices of Democrats of faith? The media coverage of this event unforutnately fell far short of the coverage Justice Sunday received. Newly energized from the Hackett campaign, I just know we can do better this time around. Drive Democracy will be in Nashville on August 14.

With your help, we’ll go to Nashville and show the nation and the world that a majority of Americans still believe in democracy and the separation of church and state.

It is critical that we raise $10,000 in the next 4 days so we can make our final preparations for Freedom AND Faith II: Nashville. We did it once. We can do it again. Click here to contribute.

If you can’t contribute, please help in any way you can. Spreading the word about this event is important. As Dr. Rita Nakashima Brock said at the forum in Austin last month, “The secular left needs to see us as partners on the same journey.” So even if this isn’t your sort of thing, please remember that we are partners–we’re on the same team. Often I see people on blogs ask, “Why don’t we hear more from the ‘religious left’?” The answer is that we have a lot to say–and we’re continuing to say it. The problem is getting people to hear us. You can help with that…and we sincerely hope that you will.

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