- 1 Early life
- 2 Education
- 3 Black Panthers
- 4 Political influences
- 5 Influence
- 6 1980s U.S. Peace Council Executive Board
- 7 World Peace Council
- 8 The Grenada connection
- 9 Rainbow
- 10 Committees of Correspondence
- 11 Anti-Trump event
- 12 Lee Greets Veterans of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade
- 13 "Making Trouble"
- 14 Progressive Caucus SOTU Address
- 15 DSA connection
- 16 Paul Wellstone tribute
- 17 Urges "progressive" DEA chief
- 18 Celebrating the Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr
- 19 Cuba
- 19.1 Cuba trip
- 19.2 1998 Cuba delegation
- 19.3 Subsequent discussion
- 19.4 1999 Cuba visit
- 19.5 Staffer's 2004 trip to Cuba
- 19.6 Another Cuba trip
- 19.7 Supporting medical training in Cuba
- 19.8 Fidel Castro on Barbara Lee
- 19.9 Lifting travel ban on Cuba
- 19.10 May 2014 Cuba trip
- 19.11 June 2014 Cuba trip
- 19.12 Cuban Embassy soiree
- 19.13 2016 Cuba visit
- 19.14 Congressmen to Cuba
- 19.15 2018 trip to Cuba
- 20 Posada letter
- 21 HR 3000
- 22 Health Care Access resolution
- 23 Progressive Majority Advisory Committee
- 24 Supporting Sandre Swanson
- 25 Communist Party connections
- 26 Endorsing Barack Obama
- 27 Clinton/Pinochet letter
- 28 2006 letter to Condoleezza Rice on Colombia
- 29 2009 letter on Colombia
- 30 Cutting off military aid to Colombia
- 31 Obama"truth squad"
- 32 Progressive Democrats of America
- 33 PDA 2018 endorsement
- 34 Congressional Progressive Caucus
- 35 Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus
- 36 Anti Iraq War
- 37 Calling on Israeli Govt. to lift Gaza Travel Ban
- 38 Supported Lifting the Gaza Blockade
- 39 Voted against cutting funding for ACORN
- 40 America's Future Now!
- 41 The Institute for Food and Development Policy/Food First
- 42 Take Back the American Dream Conference 2011
- 43 Haiti Bill
- 44 21st Century Democrats
- 45 Staffer's 2010 trip to Latin America
- 46 Committee to Stop FBI Repression delegation
- 47 CPC San Francisco Jobs forum
- 48 Congressional Black Caucus
- 49 SEIU donations
- 50 Supported by Council for a Livable World
- 51 Haiti Advocacy Working Group
- 52 International Year for People of African Descent
- 53 Abortion
- 54 Africa Action involvement
- 55 Leading with Love
- 56 ARA endorsement
- 57 Anti-Fracking legislation endorser
- 58 Phillip Burton Awards Committee
- 59 House calls for ending Afghanistan war
- 60 Venezuelan connection
- 61 LIBERT-E Act
- 62 An almost terrorist meeting
- 63 Nelson Mandela's funeral
- 64 Congressional Letter for Neutrality, 2014 Salvadoran Elections
- 65 JStreet endorsement
- 66 J Street delegation
- 67 2014 WOLA Awards
- 68 Peace Action
- 69 Vietnam conference
- 70 H.R. 1534, The Smarter Approach to Nuclear Expenditures Act
- 71 "Progressive Agenda"
- 72 Congressmembers call on Obama to rescind Venezuela sanctions
- 73 Amy Goodman interview
- 74 Letter on Iran sanctions
- 75 Condemning Criticism of Islam legislation
- 76 Praising CAIR
- 77 Agent Orange Bill
- 78 2016 Platform Drafting Committee
- 79 Fighting ACA repeal
- 80 Peace movement support
- 81 Letter on US-Mexico security Co-operation
- 82 “What do you have to lose?"
- 83 Mark Pocan’s Letter to the DHS on Colombian Paramilitaries
- 84 "Anti-trans violence resolution"
- 85 State of OUR Union
- 86 Staff
- 87 External links
- 88 References
Born 1946, in El Paso, Texas, Barbara Lee her spent teenage years in San Fernando, CA.
Mills College, B.A., 1973; University of California at Berkeley, M.A. social work degree, 1975.
Lee was inspired to a political career while a campaign worker for Shirley Chisholm's 1972 presidential campaign. Chisholm was the first black woman to enter Congress. Chisholm had a long history of Communist Party USA front affiliation, but entered Congress through the Democratic Party in New York's 11th district.
Lee was elected to Congress in 1998 in California’s 9th district after the retirement of her former boss Rep. Ron Dellums;
Both Dellums and Lee were encouraged to enter politics by longtime Berkeley Councilwoman and Communist Party USA supporter, Maudelle Shirek. Another key influence on Lee was Bay Area doctor and publisher Carlton Goodlett, also a long time Communist Party supporter.
In 2006 Barbara Lee (D-Oakland) released the following statement in response to the news that Daytona Beach Mayor and long-time San Francisco resident, Yvonne Scarlett-Golden had died of cancer at the age of 80;
- “Yvonne Scarlett-Golden was a friend to me and an inspiration to many. As the first African-American Mayor of Daytona Beach, she knew about breaking down barriers, and the fact that she came to politics after a full career as a teacher and school administrator is a testament to her determination to serve.
- “I first met Yvonne when she was the principal of Alamo Park High School in San Francisco in the 1970’s. I remember very well attending peace conferences with Yvonne, the late Alameda County Supervisor John George, former Berkeley City Councilmember Maudelle Shirek, and the late Carlton Goodlett, publisher of the Sun Reporter Newspaper, all of whose lives were totally committed to peace and justice. Yvonne was never afraid of controversy, and she was outspoken for what she believed in. We will miss her. Our thoughts and prayers are with her family.”
Lee is the most senior Democratic woman on the House International Relations Committee. Standing on principle amid post-9/11 hysteria, she was the only member of Congress to vote against the resolution broadly authorizing President Bush’s use of force.
Lee has sponsored legislation disavowing the preemptive war doctrine and led bipartisan efforts to end the genocide in Darfur. She has been a leader in the global battle against HIV/AIDS, and for civil rights and civil liberties. She formally objected in Congress to certifying Ohio's electoral votes after the 2004 election
1980s U.S. Peace Council Executive Board
World Peace Council
Ms. Lee told The Progressive magazine that her life was influenced by the late Carlton Goodlett, a dedicated Stalinist and served in the leadership of the international Soviet front, the World Peace Council. He used a newspaper he owned to spread Soviet disinformation and to promote KGB forgeries. In 1981, Ms. Lee wrote to the World Peace Council asking that the Soviet front pay for air tickets for California Rep. Ron Dellums and two staffers to attend one of their conferences.
The Grenada connection
Lee provided counterintelligence support to the Marxist-Leninist regime in Grenada in 1980, tipping off the Cuban-backed government to a possible anti-communist spy in the office of premier Maurice Bishop.
In 1982, together with her colleague Carlottia Scott, she accompanied her boss, Mr. Dellums, to communist-ruled Grenada. They wrote a report to the House Armed Services Committee in support of the airport being built on the island, which the U.S. government believed could be used by Soviet bombers aimed at us. Mr. Dellums, Ms. Lee and Miss Scott provided their draft report to Maurice Bishop, the communist dictator on the island to vet before they sent the final copy to the U.S. House of Representatives.
Ms. Lee was Mr. Dellums' administrative assistant. When she left the job to run for the California legislature in 1987, Miss Scott took over the job. When Mr. Dellums left Congress in April 1998, Ms. Lee won the seat and Miss Scott became her administrative assistant.
Miss. Scott was enamored both with Maurice Bishop and communist Grenada. In a handwritten letter to Mr. Bishop addressed to "My Comrade Leader" Miss Scott wrote: "Grenada is my home and where my deepest love will always remain. I am sincerely committed and dedicated to Grenada. I feel that now, I will be able to convey in a more comprehensive manner, the thoughts and directions of the PRG [People's Revolutionary Government of Grenada] which, based on a solid foundation, will, in eccence [sic] help to keep the REVO [revolution] up in North America."
The Lee-Scott duo warned Mr. Bishop that some of the Americans involved in the Grenada support movement were "Trotskyites." Hunting Trotskyites was an old Stalinist pastime. Mr. Bishop, whose secret police were always on the lookout for dissidents, understood the warning. 
Regime documents that US troops captured, now stored at the National Archives, show Lee's involvement with the Grenadan and Cuban governments.
When Lee received an envelope containing anti-regime material that had been mailed from Bishop's office, she immediately warned Bishop's ambassador to the Organization of American States, Dessima Williams-who sent Lee's counterintelligence tip back home to Bishop and musing about suspects. The memorandum read,
- "On May 14, 1980, Barbara Lee called to say she had received a piece of anti-PRG [People's Revolutionary Government] propaganda stamped from the Prime Minister's Office, post-marked in Grenada. We collected it May 15, and it is herewith attached.
- "Some obvious questions are: -
- "What concerns us is: How is is possible for such vicious anti-government propaganda to be mailed and stamped from the Prime Minister's Office to a friendly Congressional Office?
- "Barbara says that all those U.S. persons who went to Grenada for The First Anniversary [of the revolution] have been receiving G.I.S. News Releases regularly. Should this be so? To her knowledge, no one else except she has received this particular piece of anti-PRG material.
- "Please advise us at an early time if this was a known or unknown error; if a conspiracy and/or sabotage, and how to handle it.
"Neither 'Shampoo' Norbert Douglas our Security Officer at the Mission here, nor I have a clue on this. Only speculations:
- "1. Stanley Cyrus?
- "2. A spy inside the Ministry?
- "3. Is Roberta Salper involved? (see materials on her attached).
- "Please advise."
Influence on behalf of the regime
Lee and Dellums' chief of staff, Carlottia Scott, had been trying to promote the regime for a few years before finally getting Dellums to become personally involved in discrediting the Reagan Administration's assessment that a large Cuban-built airstrip at Point Salines was designed to handle heavy Soviet military aircraft.
Dellums was then Chairman of the House Armed Services Committee's Subcommittee on Military Construction. He used that post to claim jurisdiction, and held his own "investigation" of the airstrip. Through the subcommittee, he concluded in a report that the airstrip was for civilian purposes only - mainly tourism - and was not for the Soviet bloc military.
Lee and Scott wrote the report in collaboration with the regime - and sent it back to Bishop for his editing and approval before making the document public as a congressional report.
Scott was rumored to have been romantically involved with Bishop. Her personal letters, captured in Bishop's office after the US liberation, included one that begins, "My darling comrade leader."
In a typewritten letter to Bishop on US House of Representatives letterhead, dated April 28, 1982, Scott describes how she and Lee involved Dellums in promoting the Grenadan regime.
Addressed to Bishop as "My Dearest, Just a brief note to let you know that I still love you madly," Scott wrote:
- "I really need to talk to you face to face to share some thoughts that Ron [Dellums] has. I don't know if you realized it or not but Ron has become truly committed to Grenada and has some very positive political thinking to share with you. He feels that he can best be of assistance in a counseling manner and hopes to be able to discuss these thoughts in the near future. He just has to get all to [sic] his thoughts in order as to how your interests can best be served. Ron, as a political thinker, is the best around and Fidel will verify that in no uncertain terms. When matched against the best of them, Ron always comes out ahead (even with Fidel). He is so far ahead of his time that it scares me at times but I have learned to deal with it over the years.
- "When we left Grenada and arrived in Barbados, we met with what I would call a very ugly American, Ludlow Flowers, the Deputy Ambassador to B'dos from the U.S. In the most awesome exchange of dialogue, Ron battled this ass to the bitter end on U.S. policy toward Grenada. You would have been proud."
Scott described what she, Dellums and Lee were doing to run influence operations in Congress on behalf of the Cuban-backed government: "We are now in the process of pulling together the report for the Armed Services Committee, preparing testimony for the Inter-American Affairs Committee Hearings on Grenada, and in the process of trying to come up with a strategy to bring the U.S. and Grenada to the negotiating table."
She told Bishop about the report they were authoring about the Cuban-built airstrip at Point Salines:
- "We hope that this report will serve as a basis for a clear understanding and direct counter to the [Reagan] Administgration's policy based on their militarist lines of thinking. If the issue can be turned around soon, then we hope that all this insane rhetoric will be stopped by the U.S."
That would take some strategizing with Bishop. Scott continued,
- "However, the specifics need to be mapped out very carefully. This is only part of what Ron needs to discuss with you in as much as this has to be a team effort. (smile) Ron also has some very clear ideas on the best procedure that should be followed on your end if you agree to proceed in such a manner. Oh well, I won't bore you with all this until we are able to sit down and really discuss it. It is really very hard to put into a coherent statement at this time. As you are well aware I act on emotion a lot of the time and I am very excited about the role that Ron is willing to play after trying to get him to Grenada for so long. I know now that all our efforts have not been in vain."
Dellums' chief of staff then told Bishop that she, the congressman, and Barbara Lee met together in Havana after visiting Grenada:
- "Ron had a long talk with Barb and me when we got to Havana and cried when he realized that we had been shouldering Grenada alone all this time. Like I said, he's really hooked on you and Grenada and doesn't want anything to happen to building the Revo and making it strong. He really admires you as a person and even more so as a leader with courage and foresignt, principle and integrity. Believe me, he doesn't make that kind of statement often about anyone. The only other person that I know of that he expresses such admiration for is Fidel. (I've known and worked with Ron for many years and the last time I heard him say something like that was in 1977 after a meeting with Fidel)."
Scott then told Bishop about a courier who would bring Dellums' materials for the hearings to Grenada, and wrote of the report on the Point Salines airstrip:
- "Well sweet, I must run. Am doing this as quickly as possible. Just found out that Kojo (Chris) is leaving in a few minutes for the airport. I just wanted you to know that we need to talk and soon. Am sending copies of Ron hearings with him. You will be receiving a formal letter of appreciation for the wonderful trip from Ron soon, (As soon as I get around to writing it. (SMILE) but I have to finish this report first.) For the . . . I really need Selwyn's speech to use in this report. Peggy said he had the tape and it had not been transcribed yet. Please see if he has found it yet. It could be very important. Evfen if we don't use it for the report we could use it for the testimony for the hearings on Grenada in May.
- "Love you madly and hope to be able to prove it one of these days. Call me soon . . . ."
Scott signed her initials, then hand-wrote a postscript: "P.S. This is confidential rap as you well know. Let me know when you or one of the comrades will be taking a trip somewhere in this hemisphere so we can talk. Notice I said this hemisphere. So we can plan to meet and talk. Call me."
U.S.- Grenada Friendship Society
A mixed group of Communist Party USA members and supporters, assorted communists/marxists, and other far-left individuals held a "Founding Conference" of the U.S.- Grenada Friendship Society in Washington, D.C. on April 26, 1980.
Barbara Lee was one of the conference sponsors.
Committees of Correspondence
At the Committees of Correspondence founding conference, Berkeley California, July 17-19, 1992, Barbara Lee was a candidatefor the CoC National Coordinating Committee, while a Democratic California State Assembly person.
CoC National Coordinating Committee
The following are listed in order of votes they received as members of the Committees of Correspondence National Coordinating Committee, elected at the Conference on Perspectives for Democracy and Socialism in the 90s held at Berkeley California July 17-19.:
- Angela Davis, SF
- Gus Newport, Berkeley
- Elizabeth Martinez, SF
- Alva Buxenbaum, NY
- Leslie Cagan, NY
- Peter Camejo, Alameda, CA
- Giuliana Milanese, SF
- Robert Chacanaca, Freedom, CA
- Mildred Williamson, Chicago
- Barry Cohen, NY
- Mark Solomon, Boston
- Barbara Lee, Sacramento
- Maudelle Shirek, Berkeley
- Raahi Reddy, New Brunswick, NJ
- Margy Wilkinson, Berkeley
- Yvonne Golden, Florida
- Mary Idosidis, Mill Valley, CA
- Pat Fry, Detroit
- Marty Price, Oakland
- Fran Beal, Oakland
- Marshall Garcia, NY
- Betty Kano, Berkeley
- Michael Myerson, NY
- Sharon Stewart, LA
- Carmen Rumbaut, San Antonio
- Maurice Jackson, Washington, D.C.
- Geoffrey Jacques, NY
- Arthur Kinoy, Montclair, NJ
- Melinda Brown, LA
- Leslie Shaheen, NY
From the invitation:
- "On Wednesday, August 2, 2017, I hope you will join me for a timely discussion on the Trump Administration’s policies and their impact on the African American community, both nationally and here in the East Bay.
- "President Trump & his Administration are actively undermining progress for the African Americans by elevating white nationalists, crippling civil rights protections and eroding lifelines for families, including health care, child care and nutrition assistance.
Lee Greets Veterans of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade
In the March 21, 1998 edition of the People's Weekly World , page 16, "Lincoln vets honor Robeson", "Greetings to the crowd of more than 1,000 were presented by State Senator Barbara Lee, who is a candidate for Congress to succeed the retiring Ron Dellums. Lee condemned the current blockade against Cuba as 'wrong' and called for its removal, to be replaced by a 'normalizing' of relations with Cuba."
"The Cuban people," said Lee, "should be allowed to determine their own course of action in accordance with self-determination." Lee also attacked California Gov. Pete Wilson for his opposition to affirmative action and for his denial of prenatal medical care to thousands of California's non-citizen immigrants."
Making Trouble- Building a Radical Youth Movement' was held April 17-19, 1998 Berkeley, California.
- "Making Trouble" is a conference for young radicals from all over California to meet, form coalitions, and get informed. We will focus on the Prison Industrial Complex and the contemporary Labor Movement, but there will also be workshops on Environmental Justice, the Unz initiative, Art and Revolution, Immigration, Third World Organizing, Economic Globalization, Affirmative Action, Reproductive Rights, and much more.
Keynote Speaker: Barbara Ehrenreich
Invited speakers included;
- Dolores Huerta
- Donna Haraway
- Tom Hayden
- Angela Davis
- Cornel West
- Barbara Lee
- Jello Biafra
- Ron Dellums
Progressive Caucus SOTU Address
On Thursday, January 27 2000, from 3:30pm to 5:00pm in 2253 of RHOB, the Congressional Progressive Caucus held its 3rd Annual Congressional Progressive Caucus' State of the Union Address. This event was also sponsored by the Institute for Policy Studies' Progressive Challenge coalition whose Fairness Agenda for America is endorsed by 200 public interest groups nationally.
Caucus Chair Rep. Peter DeFazio(D-OR) stated "The Progressive Caucus Alternative State of the Union will provide a much needed reality check to politicians who would rather ignore the priorities of Americans left out of the economic boom -- priorities like access to quality health care and education, repairing crumbling schools, addressing the growing gap between the rich and poor, and creating a sustainable global economy that works for everyone, not just the corporate architects."
Anticipated speakers included: Peter DeFazio (D-OR), House Minority Whip David Bonior (D-MI), Earl Hilliard (D-AL);Dennis Kucinich (D-OH); Cynthia McKinney (D-GA);. Major Owens (D-NY)Bernie Sanders (I-VT). Tammy Baldwin (D-WI);. Maurice Hinchey (D-NY);Barbara Lee (D-CA); Jerrold Nadler (D-NY); and Lynn Woolsey(D-CA). John Cavanagh, director of the Institute for Policy Studies also made some remarks regarding public interest groups support of a progressive agenda.
- The Congressional Progressive Caucus, Chaired by Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-OR), consists of over a quarter of the House Democrats, one Independent and Senator Paul Wellstone. The Caucus will be releasing position papers on Health Care and Income Inequality, with reports on the Alternative Federal Budget, Social Security, Minimum Wage, Education and the Global Economy.
Support from Democratic Socialists of America
- The DSA national convention passed a resolution condemning the September 11 attacks, supporting in principle the selective use of multilateral armed force, and calling for a halt to the bombing. Its text, along with previous statements by DSA on the war, will presumably be available at the national web site soon. The Sacramento local and the anti-racism commission issued a prior statement, also available as an MS Word document. The East Bay local will be working for the re-election of Barbara Lee, the sole member of Congress to oppose a resolution granting sweeping, vaguely specified war powers to our illegitimate President.
DSA supported Vaccines Compensation Bill
Lynn Woolsey and Barbara Lee both co-sponsored Kucinich's Kill
According to the minutes of a January 5, 2002 SF DSA Steering Committee meeting;
- According to a (fundraising) call from DSA, supporting HR2459 is a national DSA project. The idea is to contact representatives about co-sponsoring the bill, which comes from Dennis Kucinich and is supported by the progressive caucus. Everyone said they would contact their rep (neither Pelosi nor Lantos has signed on; Woolsey and Lee are co-sponsors).
- This led to the question of the best way to contact Congress post anthrax scare. The feeling was regular mail might not get through, and probably a phone call would have the greatest impact. e-mail is another option.
Take Back America Conferences
Barbara Lee was on the list of 153 speakers at the 2006 Take Back America conference, which was organized by the Institute for Policy Studies, and Democratic Socialists of America dominated Campaign for America's Future.
She was back in 2007.
Fred Ross award campaign
In early 2013, mainly Democratic Socialists of America aligned activists, together with many elected officials across the United States came together to urge President Barack Obama to award posthumously the Presidential Medal of Freedom to the legendary organizer, Fred Ross, Sr.. The Saul Alinsky trained radical was the first to organize people through house meetings, a mentor to both Cesar Chavez and DSAer Dolores Huerta, and a pioneer in Latino voter outreach since 1949 when he helped elect Communist Party USA affiliate Ed Roybal as Los Angeles’s first Latino council member, "Ross’ influence on social change movements remains strong two decades after his death in 1992".
Congressional endorsers of the proposal included Barbara Lee.
Paul Wellstone tribute
As the 2004 Democratic National Convention was poised to open in Boston , Jobs with Justice, , hosted a living tribute to the late Senator Paul Wellstone on July 25. Hundreds filled the historic Old West Church to tackle the question, “What must the Democratic Party do to live up to the progressive vision of Paul Wellstone?”
“Paul had the courage to stand the pain that comes with standing for something and not fall for anything,” said United Steelworkers of America union International President Leo Gerard. “That’s what the Democratic Party needs right now. He gave people a reason to fight, to hope.”
Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.), another panel member, called for “Wellstone Democratic Clubs” to mobilize neighborhoods into the political process to re-order national resources.
Many in the audience were students at Camp Wellstone, a workshop conducted in Boston for prospective candidates and campaign workers conducted by Wellstone’s campaign manager, Jeff Blodgett, also on the panel.
Rep. Major Owens (D-N.Y.) pointed out that too many liberals, including himself, voted for “welfare reform” in 1996. He praised Wellstone as the lone voice defending welfare at the time.
Boston City Councilor Chuck Turner quickly jumped in, igniting the audience with a clarion call for popular direct action to ensure accountability from a Kerry administration. “We need Kerry there and we need to be there to purge the cancer (of the Bush administration) from the soul of the body politic,” he said.
“Tell that to Texas farmers who are losing their farms or workers who have lost their jobs to NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement),” Hightower said. “Who the hell elected the WTO (World Trade Organization)? Right now, in Washington, there are too many 5-watt bulbs sitting in 100-watt sockets. The people are revolting – in the best sense. I think we are going to get George.”
Confessing to once being a Republican, columnist Arianna Huffington reminded the assembly of all the dirty tricks and disgusting tactics that are on the horizon as November nears. Saying that “Mobilization is the key,” she proposed reaching out to the 50 percent of the eligible electorate that stayed home in 2000. “If we are able to just energize 10 percent of those voters, we win.”
The program included the presentation of awards to two attorneys, Julie Patino and Nadine Cohen, both of whom have fought difficult battles to protect affirmative action and voting rights of Massachusetts residents and immigrants. Other panelists included Al Franken, media personality, noted Columbia professor Frances Fox Piven and Anna Burger, vice president of the Service Employees International Union.
Urges "progressive" DEA chief
May 1, 2015, Representatives Jared Polis (D-CO), Steve Cohen (D-TN), and Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) sent a letter to President Obama urging him to nominate a new Drug Enforcement Administration chief that has a more progressive approach to federal drug enforcement. Barbara Lee (D-CA), Sam Farr (D-CA), Zoe Lofgren (D-CA), and Eric Swalwell (D-CA) also joined in sending the letter.
The Representatives urged the President to nominate a DEA Administrator who is willing to work with state and federal officials to create policies that work with—not against—the evolving landscape of state marijuana laws. The letter states that retiring DEA director Michele Leonhart placed too great an emphasis on prosecuting marijuana use and not enough on drug-related activity that truly poses a public-safety risk.
“The DEA plays a critical role in promoting the health and safety of Americans. But to succeed in its mission, it must refocus its efforts on cracking down on bad actors who seek to evade state laws rather than those who abide by them,” the Representatives wrote. “All of us share a commitment to keeping drugs out of the hands of children, diminishing the reach of criminal cartels, and helping individuals who are addicted to drugs find the help they need to turn their lives around.
“To accomplish these aims, the DEA must end its resistance to the changing public consensus on marijuana use and stop expending its limited resources to prosecute individuals who are not a threat to public safety and, instead, focus on drug activity that poses a more serious risk,” they added.
Celebrating the Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr
In bold letters, under a picture of Dr. King, was the following:
"WHEN YOU STAND UP FOR PEACE AND JUSTICE... YOU STAND WITH THE PEOPLE!"
"Welcome Congresswoman Barbara Lee the first Congressional vote vs. Bush's war"
Apparently the speakers were:
- The Riverside Church Mission and Social Justice - 120th Street & Riverside Drive Riverside Church
- WBAI - an affiliate of the far-left Pacifica Radio network
- Black Radical Congress BRC - a marxist-oriented organization that includes black extremists of all types from the CPUSA to the old RAM, the Black Reparations movement, and far-left Afrocentric professors (See: Black Radical Congress KW site)
Barbara Lee, was on three Cuba trips in 2014, and has been more than 20 times since the 1970s.
1998 Cuba delegation
In December 1998, newly elected Rep Barbara Lee hosted an 11 member, five day mission to Cuba. Delegates included Oakland City Council members Ignacio De La Fuente, Henry Chang and Jane Brunner, who all paid their own way. On her return Lee intended to submit a written report to President Bill Clinton and Congress on the delegations findings. In October that year lee had been one of 17 Members of Congress who sent a letter to Clinton calling for a bi-partisan commission to review US-Cuba policy. 
Saturday May 8, 1999, "Cuba Town Hall Meeting" Congresswoman Barbara Lee to Sponsor Berkeley, CA at 1 pm to 3:00 pm at La Peña Cultural Center in Berkeley, CA.
U.S. Congressperson Barbara Lee will lead a panel discussion on US-Cuba policy on Saturday May 8. The following speakers will join Congressperson Lee in leading the discussion:
- Maudelle Shirek, Vice-Mayor of Berkeley
- Ignacio de la Fuente, Vice-Mayor of Oakland
- Henry Chang, Oakland City Councilmember
- Jane Brunner, Oakland City Councilmember
- Professor Alex Saragosza, Professor of Ethnic Studies, UC-Berkeley
- Tom Miller, Board of Directors, Global Exchange
1999 Cuba visit
On February 18 1990, six members of the U.S. Congressional Black Caucus visited Cuba to evaluate the U.S.-imposed embargo. Among the visitors: Maxine Waters and Barbara Lee of California, Sheila Jackson-Lee of Texas, Julia Carson of Indiana and Gregory Meeks from New York and Earl Hilliard of Alabama [Vice Chair, CBC].
Representative Maxine Waters, who headed the delegation, stated that many of the congressional representatives already have some information about Cuba. But she hoped that additional facts would help the Black Caucus take a leading role in introducing legislation to change current U.S. policies toward Cuba.
Jorge Lezcano, President of the International Relations Commission of the Cuban Parliament, received the U.S. congressional representatives upon their arrival in Havana. Lezcano told reporters that the visiting members of the Congressional Black Caucus plan to meet with Cuban lawmakers and other government officials. He added that during their stay on the island, the U.S. delegation will also visit places of cultural and historic interest.
The legislators' visit was organized by the US based Pastors for Peace, headed by the Rev. Lucius Walker, who accompanied the delegation. They have organized several aid "caravans" in the United States to collect supplies and take them to the island.
On Thursday, February 18th, the group met with Cuban Foreign Minister Roberto Robaina and held a question and answer session with him. The Cuban domestic news agency AIN said the encounter covered Washington's "aggressive policy" toward Cuba and the effects of the long-running U.S. economic embargo against the communist-ruled island. Robaina also talked about what he called the "enormous misinformation" about Cuba in the mainstream U.S. media.
Late Friday, February 19th, the group met with President Fidel Castro for 6 hours. There have as yet been no details on the meeting in the Cuban press. Vice President Carlos Lage and Ricardo Alarcon, president of the parliament, were also present.
Staffer's 2004 trip to Cuba
In May 2004, Julie Nickson from the office of Congresswoman Barbara Lee spent four days in Havana, Cuba, for the purpose of "fact finding". The trip cost $1,393.16 and was paid for by the Christopher Reynolds Foundation.
Another Cuba trip
In early April 2009, Rep. Barbara Lee led a congressional delegation to Havana for a 4-1/2 hour meeting with Raul Castro, telling reporters, "All of us are convinced that President Castro would like normal relations and would see normalization, ending the embargo, as beneficial to both countries." Reuters reported that Lee's delegation "avoided specifics" with Castro "but were struck by his humor, impressed by his involvement in Third World causes and firm in their belief that he wants to end U.S.-Cuba enmity."
The meeting between Castro, Lee, and five other members of the Congressional Black Caucus, took place in secret without the customary presence of a US State Department official. No reporters attended, and according to the New York Times, Cuban television, which covered the visit, offered no details of what was said.
Reps. Emanuel Cleaver (D-MO), Marcia L. Fudge (D-OH), Laura Richardson (D-CA), Bobby Rush (D-IL), Melvin Luther Watt (D-CA), and Barbara Lee. "Also participating were Patrice Willougby, executive assistant to the Congressional Black Caucus, and Eulada Watt, wife of Congressman Mel Watt,".
Bobby Rush said he found Raul Castro "to be just the opposite of how he's being portrayed in the media." AP quotes Rush as saying, "I think what really surprised me, but also endeared to him was his keen sense of humor, his sense of history and his basic human qualities." At times, Rush said, the lawmakers and Castro chatted "like old family members."
Lee says she wanted to influence President Barack Obama prior to the upcoming Summit of the Americas in Trinadad and Tobago.
Prior to the trip, Lee told her hometown Oakland Tribune newspaper that the US had to open up to Cuba, but did not demand that the Cuban government open up; she blasted US policy as "based on antiquated Cold War-era thinking." She could have used those words to describe her own views.
Supporting medical training in Cuba
Teresa Glover, a 27-year-old medical student, told me during a recent visit to her medical school. "Nobody in my family has ever had the chance to be a doctor." Glover's mother is a teacher, and her father a dispatcher for the New York subway system. Her background is a mix of African American, Barbadian, and Cherokee. She graduated from the State University of New York at Plattsburgh. "I wanted to be a doctor, but I wasn't sure how to get into medicine. I had decent grades, but I didn't have any money, and even applying to medical school cost a lot."
In her third year, Glover is negotiating the classic passage from the laboratory to the clinic. . She is enrolled at the Latin American School of Medicine (ELAM, which is its Spanish acronym) in Havana - a school sponsored by the Cuban government and dedicated to training doctors to treat the poor of the Western hemisphere and Africa. Twenty-seven countries and 60 ethnic groups are represented among ELAM's 8000 students.
In 2004, there were 88 U.S. students at ELAM, 85 percent of them members of minority groups and 73 percent of them women. Recruitment and screening are handled by the Interreligous Foundation for Community Organization , a New York-based interfaith organization.
The Bush administration's restrictions on travel to Cuba have been a thorn in the side of the program from the beginning. Since the Cuban government pays the students' room, board, tuition, and a stipend, the ban was not initially applied to them. But the administration's further attempts to curtail Cuban travel threatened the students and sent their families scrambling for political help. Representatives Barbara Lee (D-Calif.) and Charles Rangel (D-N.Y.) led a campaign of protest, and 27 members of Congress signed a letter to Secretary of State Colin Powell asking that the ELAM students be exempted from the ban. In August, the administration relented and granted the students permission to remain in Cuba.
Fidel Castro on Barbara Lee
- She first traveled to Cuba accompanying the then black Congressman Ronald Dellums. She was his assistant and afterwards occupied his seat when he retired. On that occasion I had the honor of meeting her and admiring her combative spirit and capacity for struggle.
Lifting travel ban on Cuba
- Due to your action/emails/phone calls we have 59 signatures from House representatives urging President Obama to support travel to Cuba by granting general licenses for ALL current categories of travel.
- By eliminating the laborious license application process, especially for people-to-people groups, that is managed by the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), the majority of the bureaucratic red tape that holds up licensable travel to Cuba would disappear and actually facilitate what the President wanted to see in 2011, liberalized travel regulations.
Signatories included Rep. Lee .
May 2014 Cuba trip
In early May, 2014 Rep. Barbara Lee (CA-13), Rep. Gregory Meeks (CA-), Rep. Emanuel Cleaver (MO-5), and Rep. Sam Farr (NY-20) traveled to Cuba with Center for Democracy in the Americas, where they met with Alan Gross and Cuban officials, including Cuba's Foreign Minister Bruno Rodríguez. 
June 2014 Cuba trip
In June 2014 a delegation organized by the Center for Democracy in the Americas traveled to Havana Cuba. It consisted of Sarah Stephens of CDA, US Congresswomen Barbara Lee, Anna Eshoo, Rosa DeLauro, Betty McCollum, and Laura Richardson, Bettina Duval, Alicia Daly, Heather McGhee and other, The delegates had several meetings in Havana, including on June 21, when the Congressmembers and Sarah Stephens met with Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez.
Cuban Embassy soiree
It was remarkable how many non-Cubans knew the Cuban national anthem well enough to sing along July 2015 as the flag was raised over the newly re-established embassy on 16th Street NW. Then they joined in the delirious shouts of "Viva Cuba!"
"It's an amazing moment," said Phyllis Bennis, a fellow with the progressive think-tank, Institute for Policy Studies. "In the decades-long effort to normalise relations with Cuba, to stop the US attacks and hostility toward Cuba, we have not had so many victories. Suddenly we have a victory. The flag going up - that's huge."
“Hemingway would be proud,” said Scott Gilbert, an attorney who represented jailed American contractor Alan Gross, by way of compliment to the bartenders mixing the concoctions in a room named after the famed American ex-pat writer. “There’s a feeling today of joy, but also of disbelief,” Gilbert said. “So many people here thought this would never happen.”
Guests included Sens. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.), Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), and Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.); Reps. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), Karen Bass (D-Calif.), Barbara Lee (D-Calif.), Jose Serrano (D-NY), Raul Grijalva (D-Ariz.); plus administration types including deputy national security adviser Ben Rhodes. NBC anchor Andrea Mitchell slipped through the phalanx of protesters, camera crews, and folks celebrating just outside the gates.
“I’m excited,” said Danny Glover, who in addition to his “Lethal Weapon” roles has been part of numerous cultural delegations to Cuba. “This is the beginning of another narrative….What’s happened in the last 54 years is an insult to our intelligence as human beings and [American] citizens.”
2016 Cuba visit
Obama will be the first president to visit Cuba in 88 years, and the trip is a symbolic next chapter in his attempts to normalize relations with the country.
The House members will attend along with several senators who previously announced they will make the trip.
The House delegation includes Reps. Karen Bass, Cheri Bustos, Sam Farr, Rosa DeLauro, Barbara Lee, Charles Rangel, Kathy Castor, David Cicilline, Steve Cohen, Jan Schakowsky, Peter Welch, Alan Lowenthal, Jim McGovern and Lucille Roybal-Allard. House Democratic Caucus Chairman Xavier Becerra of California will also travel to Cuba along with Eliot Engel, the top Democrat on the Foreign Affairs Committee.
Democratic Sens. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota, Dick Durbin of Illinois, Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota, Patrick Leahy of Vermont, and Tom Udall of New Mexico are slated to join the trip. Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.), who has been a leading advocate for normalizing relations with Cuba, will also attend. Additional House Republicans may also join.
Pelosi previously led the first official House delegation trip to the country after Obama announced the change in U.S. policy toward Cuba in 2014.
Congressmen to Cuba
Dec. 12-Dec. 16, 2014 Reps Michael Burgess (R-TX), Karen Bass, Danny Davis, Diana DeGette, Robin Kelly, Barbara Lee, and Charles Rangel, were part of a group trip to Havana, Cuba sponsored by Medical Education Cooperation with Cuba . "Attended meetings with government officials, health care workers and providers and members of civil society".
2018 trip to Cuba
CUBA: U.S. House of Representatives Delegation Posted on January 28, 2018;
In January 2018, Center for Democracy in the America led a bipartisan delegation of U.S. House Members to Havana to meet with Cuban officials investigating the mysterious symptoms experienced by U.S. diplomats, assess the impact of recent U.S. policies on the Cuban people, and explore areas for future collaboration. The trip included Representatives Barbara Lee (CA-13), Karen Bass (CA-37), and Roger Marshall (KS-01). The delegation had the opportunity to speak briefly with Cuban President Raul Castro and met First Vice President Miguel Diaz-Canel.
In 2005 several far left Congressmembers wrote to President Bush urging him to extradite alleged terrorist Luis Posada Carriles to Venezuela to face justice.
- We are writing to urge you to oppose the application for asylum by Luis Posada Carriles, and to support the request for extradition to Venezuela, where he is a fugitive from justice.
Signatories were; Dennis Kucinich, Barbara Lee, Cynthia McKinney, John Olver, James McGovern, Donald Payne, Lane Evans, Carolyn Maloney, Tammy Baldwin, Lynn Woolsey, Jose Serrano, Raul Grijalva, Maurice Hinchey, Bobby Rush, Edolphus Towns, Sam Farr, Bennie Thompson, Ed Pastor, Sheila Jackson Lee, Maxine Waters.
Progressive State of the Union Address, 1999
January 19, 1999, members of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, and Institute for Policy Studies, talked about issues that they are planning to address in the upcoming year, at the Progressive State of the Union Address. Some of the issues they intend to address are poverty in the United States, national defense, the global economy, Medicare, and education. Rep. Conyers stated that the House disregarded the views the majority of the American people when the House impeached the president.
Speakers were Tammy Baldwin [D] Wisconsin, John Cavanagh Co-Director Institute for Policy Studies, John Conyers, [D] Michigan, Peter DeFazio [D] Oregon, Karen Dolan, Coordinator Institute for Policy Studies, Earl Hilliard, [D] Alabama, Maurice Hinchey, [D] New York, Stephanie Tubbs Jones, [D] Ohio, Barbara Lee, [D] California, Jerrold Nadler, [D] New York, Grace Napolitano, [D] California, Major Owens, [D] New York, Bernie Sanders, [I] Vermont, Jan Schakowsky, [D] Illinois.
On September 3, 2003 Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D-CA) introduced H.R. 3000, the United States Universal Health Service Act, which would provide health coverage for all Americans. H.R. 3000 would establish a United States Health Service (USHS), which would eliminate profit issues from health care because it would be owned and controlled by the public and administered primarily at the local level.
The decentralized system would provide high quality comprehensive care for all, regardless of one’s ability to pay. Lee’s bill would make high-quality preventive, acute and long term care available to everyone regardless of demographics, employment status, or previous health status. Over forty million individuals in America have no health insurance. Despite numerous debates and discussions, Congress has failed to provide a viable solution to this national crisis.
Access to health care directly impacts the welfare of individuals in many poor and minority communities. Of the uninsured, 56% are low income, and although minorities make up approximately 34% of the population, they comprise over half of the nation’s uninsured.
“The United States is the only industrialized nation in the world that does not provide universal health care,” said Lee. “We must become a health care provider, not a denier of this fundamental right.”
According to the Communist Party USA's People's World, initial supporters of HR 3000 were Julia Carson, (D-Ind.), Donna Christensen (D-Va.), John Conyers (D-Mich.), Elijah Cummings (D-Md.), Danny Davis (D-Ill.), Jesse Jackson, Jr. (D-Ill.), Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio), Major Owens (D-N.Y.), Donald Payne (D-N.J.), and Lynn Woolsey (D-Calif.).
The World went on to say;
- We will not win the United States Health Service without a massive, prolonged struggle by working people against the corporate defenders of the current for-profit health care industry.
Health Care Access resolution
John Conyers promoted House Concurrent Resolution 99 (H. Con Res. 99) Directing Congress to enact legislation by October 2004 that provides access to comprehensive health care for all Americans. IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES April 4, 2001.
Sponsors:John Conyers (for himself), Jan Schakowsky, John Tierney, Barbara Lee, Donna Christensen, David Bonior, Dennis Kucinich, Earl Hilliard, Maurice Hinchey, Jerry Nadler, Donald Payne Chaka Fattah, Peter DeFazio, John Lewis Tammy Baldwin, Stephanie Tubbs Jones, Barney Frank, Henry Waxman, Cynthia McKinney, Jim Langevin, George Miller Alcee Hastings, Patsy Mink, John Olver , Bennie Thompson, Pete Stark, Julia Carson, and Mike Capuano submitted the following concurrent resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Energy and Commerce;
- Resolved by the House of Representatives (the Senate concurring), that the Congress shall enact legislation by October 2004 to guarantee that every person in the United States, regardless of income, age, or employment or health status, has access to health care..
Progressive Majority Advisory Committee
Supporting Sandre Swanson
Communist Party connections
People's Weekly World Banquet 1997
Elected officials attending the 1997 Bay Area People's Weekly World banquet, at His Lordships, Berkeley Marina, included State Senator Barbara Lee Assemblywoman Liz Figueroa, Alemeda County Board of Supervisors president Keith Carson and Berkeley vice mayor and City Council member Maudelle Shirek.
Honored were Brian McWilliams, Santa Cruz County Central Labor Council, Amy Dean, South Bay Labor Council, Wilson Riles, Jr. regional director AFSC and Art Rodriguez of the National Labor Community Coalition for Public Works Jobs.
Endorsed Communist Party 1999 PWW fund raiser
PWW 2001 banquet
Keynote speaker Eliseo Medina, Service Employees Union International executive vice president, received a standing ovation at the People’s Weekly World banquet in Berkeley Nov. 18 2001, when he sharply criticized Republicans for killing an economic stimulus program that would have benefited working families.
Instead, Medina said, they substituted measures that are actually “aid to our favorite dependent corporations.”
In addition to Medina, the banquet honored the East Bay Alliance for a Sustainable Economy (EBASE), the Middle East Children’s Alliance, and Sacramento Activists for Democratic Trade. The event raised $11,000 for the 2001 Fund Drive.
Honorees received certificates of Congressional recognition by the office of Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.), in whose district the event took place. Lee’s greeting was presented by her aide, Saundra Andrews.
“At this time of crisis, when world peace hangs in the balance and the rights of immigrants are under attack,” Lee’s statement said, “it is more important than ever that our community come together to honor the work and legacy of those who struggle to advance the cause of peace and justice for working people everywhere.”
2002 PWW banquet
In a spirited tribute, the Northern California People’s Weekly World/Nuestro Mundo banquet Oct. 13 honored “the heroes and heroines of the struggle against corporate greed,” and called for a big turnout against Republican “Bush-clones” in the Nov. 5 election. The banquet raised $8,000 for the PWW fund drive.
In her opening, Berkeley Vice Mayor Maudelle Shirek spoke of the growing movements in solidarity with West Coast port workers and against war. “So there is hope,” she said, “and a new movement that we must help nurture and grow.”
That movement includes the bloc in Congress that voted against the Bush war resolution, and those who supported Rep. Barbara Lee’s (D-Calif.) peace resolution.
The banquet honored the Coalition for Workers Rights , Hotel Employees and Restaurant Employees Locals 2 and 2850, Sacramento Living Wage Campaign and Father Bill O’Donnell, known as “labor’s priest.” Each received certificates from Rep. Lee, in whose district the event took place, and from Wilma Chan, majority leader in the California Assembly, as well as from PWW/Nuestro Mundo. Elliott Kenin and the “Spirit of ’29” traditional jazz band and singer/songwriter Anthony J. Smith added to the upbeat spirit.
2003 PWW banquet
Youth groups and unions on the front line for youth and workers’ rights were honored at the 2003 Northern California People’s Weekly World/Nuestro Mundo banquet on Sunday, Nov. 9.
Following the International Longshore and Warehouse Union’s victorious contract struggle in 2002, Longshore Local 10 President Henry Graham said the local and its brother locals are now focused on ensuring the giant shipping transnationals comply with the pact. The contract secured vital health and pension coverage, Graham said, but the union’s biggest challenge is employers’ constant efforts to cut the workforce, with clerks’ jobs under special pressure because of new technology.
Based on a survey last year of 1,000 students at three Oakland high schools, student organizers from Kids First "are pressing for real student council powers concerning school safety and security, teacher quality, classes and extracurricular activities". “We also believe helping youth take more ownership of issues affecting their daily lives is an important step to help lower the dropout rate,” Kids First Membership Coordinator Germaine Ashley told the PWW. Kids First formed eight years ago in the midst of the struggle to win more services for Oakland’s multiracial youth population.
Asian Youth Promoting Advocacy and Leadership "is campaigning for repeal of a 1996 federal law that says non-citizens can be deported for an offense with a prison sentence of a year or more'. AYPAL said this breaks up families, punishes people twice, and sends people who grew up in the U.S. to a culture they may no longer know. AYPAL, which comprises six youth social justice organizations in the Cambodian, Chinese, Vietnamese, Laotian and Mien, Korean, Filipino and Pacific Islander communities, also works with prominent area artists to develop quality youth cultural performances.
Youth of Oakland United, the youth organization of PUEBLO (People United for a Better Oakland) was 'campaigning to win more jobs for both youth and adults". YOU’s video, “There Goes the ‘Hood,’” dramatized Mayor Jerry Brown’s plans to gentrify Oakland, while YOU organized against two of his favorite recent projects – a proposed anti-loitering law ostensibly against drugs, but actually targeting youth of color, and a $70 million anti-violence measure with most funds going to police instead of preventive programs.
Each honoree received a special congressional certificate from Democratic Rep. Barbara Lee, in whose district the banquet was held. Berkeley Vice Mayor Maudelle Shirek extended a welcome to all the honorees and guests.
2004 PWW banquet
The mood was both joyous and determined as Northern California supporters of the People’s Weekly World/Nuestro Mundo gathered Oct. 8 2004 in Oakland, to celebrate their favorite newspaper and to rededicate themselves to the banquet’s theme — “Beat back Bush!”
The full-house, rainbow crowd honored leaders and organizations from the labor, antiwar, Cuba and Haiti solidarity movements and enjoyed a rich cultural program. Honorees received certificates of appreciation from area Congresswoman Barbara Lee and from Friends of the People’s Weekly World/Nuestro Mundo.
2006 PWW event
- Dec. 3 was a day the People’s Weekly World can be proud of. Still celebrating the results of the Nov. 7 elections, readers held banquets and dinners in various places across the country, attracting elected officials, leaders of people’s movements and rank-and-file fighters for justice and democracy...
- A highlight of the Northern California banquet in Oakland was hearing former Daily Worker sports editor Lester Rodney, now an energetic 95. He told the multigenerational, multiracial audience about the years-long struggle to integrate Major League Baseball, leading up to Jackie Robinson’s first appearance with the Brooklyn Dodgers in April 1947...
- Other honored guests included anti-nuclear-weapons leader Jackie Cabasso, the Blue Diamond Workers Organizing Committee and two Sacramento-based immigrant rights coalitions. All received certificates from U.S. Rep. Barbara Lee as well as from Friends of the People’s Weekly World/Nuestro Mundo.
Communist Party support
A 2002 report by Joelle Fishman, Chair, Political Action Committee, Communist Party USA to the party's National Board, called for communist support for two California Congressional candidates-Michael Honda and Barbara Lee.
- The priority labor campaigns deserve our support. In addition our work will take us beyond these races to election districts where we have organization and where there are strong pro-labor candidates, African American, Mexican American and Latino candidates such as Rep. Mike Honda and Rep. Barbara Lee.
- Every district should consider where we can make a qualitative difference. What are the election campaigns where there is a labor or people's candidate, where we can participate in coalition to build a movement in that election district, and in the process build our Party.
Department of Peace
Speaking to a crowd of 200 peace activists March 11, 2002, in Oakland California, Reps. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.) and Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio) took the occasion to condemn the Bush administration’s plans to target seven nations with nuclear weapons.
“To think that the nuclear option is on the table as a viable strategy is terrifying,” said Lee. “We must keep peace out there as an option.”
Kucinich declared, “We have a crisis in the country – a crisis in the the lack of belief in the power of peace. The Bush plan,” he said, “challenges America morally. It raises the question of what America stands for.” Both statements were warmly applauded by the audience gathered to hear about a proposed Cabinet-level Peace Office initiated by Lee and Kucinich.
They were joined in their stand by Communist Party USA affiliated activist Jackie Cabasso, spokesperson for the Peoples Non-Violent Response Coalition, organizer of the event, who said, “The U.S. position needs to be condemned today, immediately! We need a Department of Peace, but we need some interim measures in the meantime.” The PNVRC was formed in the wake of the events of Sept. 11 to promote non-violence as the answer to terrorism.
The bill (HR-2459) that would set up the Department of Peace was introduced in Congress on July 11, 2001 by Kucinich; at that point there were 61 co-sponsors, including Lee.
The bill would order the federal government to set up a $3 billion a year agency with a Secretary of Peace who would be a member of the President’s Cabinet, and seven assistant secretaries. The mission of the Department would include: hold peace as an organizing principle; endeavor to promote justice and democratic principles to expand human rights; develop policies that promote national and international conflict prevention, non-violent intervention, mediation, peaceful resolution of conflict, and structured mediation of conflict.
A national “Peace Day” would be declared as an occasion to urge all citizens to create peace.
"Revolutionary mole" letter
Frank Chapman is a long time Communist Party USA supporter. In the early 1980s he chaired a party front National Alliance Against Racist and Political Oppression. In the mid '80s he served on the board of another communist front, the U.S. Peace Council, alongside two future Barack Obama colleagues and supporters Alice Palmer and Representative Lee.
- Now, beyond all the optimism I was capable of mustering, Mr. Obama won Iowa! He won in a political arena 95 percent white. It was a resounding defeat for the manipulations of the ultra-right and their right-liberal fellow travelers. Also it was a hard lesson for liberals who underestimated the political fury of the masses in these troubled times.
- Obama’s victory was more than a progressive move; it was a dialectical leap ushering in a qualitatively new era of struggle. Marx once compared revolutionary struggle with the work of the mole, who sometimes burrows so far beneath the ground that he leaves no trace of his movement on the surface. This is the old revolutionary “mole,” not only showing his traces on the surface but also breaking through.
- The old pattern of politics as usual has been broken. It may not have happened as we expected it to happen but what matters is that it happened. The message is clear: we can and must defeat the ultra-right, by uniting the broadest possible coalition that will represent an overwhelming majority of the people in a new political dynamic. We must quickly shed yesterday’s political perspective and get in step with the march of events.
Endorsing Barack Obama
- I wanted to share some exciting news with you, as today I announced my endorsement of Senator Barack Obama for President of the United States.
- Like so many Americans, I first heard Senator Obama when he delivered his electrifying speech at the 2004 Democratic National Convention in Boston. Deep down, I knew I'd witnessed history in the making.
- Barack Obama represents a bridge to the future. He embodies the hope and new direction that our country so desperately needs. As I've watched Senator Obama campaign for the presidency, I am convinced that he is a real agent of change; a man who can lead our nation in a new and positive direction.
- This century cries for social, environmental, diplomatic, global, and neighborhood solutions to the misery that confronts far too many people in our own country and around the globe. I share Senator Obama's vision and active commitment to building a society based on activism, progressive values and a keen sense that we must act now and outside of the usual bounds of partisanship and expediency.
- I know that a President Obama would find a prompt and effective way to end the occupation of Iraq and that he would strengthen U.S. diplomacy and international development as an instrument of national policy to prevent crises that lead to war and conflagration.
- I know that a President Obama would place education, health care, poverty, economic security, criminal justice reform, climate change and all of the important domestic issues at the top of his agenda.
- And, I know that a President Obama would make the eradication of HIV/AIDS at home and abroad a top priority.
- I founded One Voice PAC as an organization dedicated to helping elect truly progressive candidates who will challenge the status quo. To that end, I am honored to endorse Senator Obama's candidacy and I hope you will join me in helping him secure the Democratic nomination for the presidency.
On October 21, 1998, many Members of Congress wrote a letter to President Bill Clinton, urging him to release information to a Spanish judge investigating former Chilean President Pinochet for alleged crimes committed during and after the overthrow of the Marxist Allende government.
- Dear Mr. President:
- The October 17 arrest of General Augusto Pinochet in London is a good example of how the goals you outlined in your anti-terrorism speech at the United Nations can be put into practice. Indeed, when the rule oflaw is applied to combat international lawlessness,humanity's agenda gains...we call upon you to ensure that the U.S. government provides Spanish Judge Baltasar Garzon material related to Pinochet's role in international terrorism -- material and testimony that the U.S. government has thus far withheld.
Signatories included Rep. Barbara Lee.
2006 letter to Condoleezza Rice on Colombia
Alleged Colombian Army killings prompted Fellowship of Reconciliation to work with Representative Sam Farr to forge a response that would impact the 17th Brigade, the unit allegedly responsible for the violence against San José de Apartadó and communities throughout northwestern Colombia.
- Letter to Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice
- (Deadline for Congressional representatives to sign: February 22)
- We applaud the decision, noted in your certification letter of August 2005, that the US "will not consider providing assistance to the 17th Brigade until all significant human rights allegations involving the unit have been credibly addressed." Because the Brigade is a component of the Colombian Armed Forces' command structure and has been implicated in the above referenced human rights violations, we implore you to abide by both the letter of the law and the spirit of the law by withholding human rights certification for Colombia until the following conditions are met:
Signatories included Barbara Lee.
2009 letter on Colombia
From November 6th through December 7th 2009, a letter calling for change in U.S. policy towards Colombia was circulated through the House of Representatives. This letter called for a decrease in U.S. aid for Colombia's military and an increase in support for human rights and humanitarian efforts. The initiators of this letter were —Representatives James McGovern, Jan Schakowsky, Donald Payne, and Mike Honda.
- Dear Secretary of State Clinton,
- The FY 2011 budget will contain the twelfth year of a major aid package to Colombia—an aid package originally slated to phase out after six years.
- After eleven years, it is time to scale down assistance for Colombia's military and more systematically "Colombianize" such programs, within both the State Department and Defense Department budgets.
Signatories included Barbara Lee.
Cutting off military aid to Colombia
In November 2014, eight United States lawmakers sent a letter to Secretary of State John Kerry in which they say that ongoing Afro-Colombian rights abuses show that “Colombia is not in full compliance” with human rights policies required to receive US military aid.
In the letter, coordinated by House Representative Hank Johnson’s office and signed by seven other members of Congress, the US politicians expressed “grave concern” over the human rights situation in cities on the Pacific coast, where the majority of inhabitants are Afro-Colombians.
Barack Obama’s campaign in California formed a “truth squad,” announced via conference call, in January 2008, to counter the attacks that Hillary Clinton’s campaign has leveled in recent weeks. On the call were squad members Bay Area Congressman George Miller, LA Congresswoman Linda Sanchez, Oakland Congresswoman Barbara Lee, and LA County Labor Federation chief Maria Elena Durazo, now a national co-chair of the Obama campaign. Also on the squad are Silicon Valley Congresswoman Zoe Lofgren, LA Congressman Adam Schiff, state Senate Majority Leader Gloria Romero, Assembly Majority Leader Karen Bass, and, San Francisco District Attorney Kamala Harris.
Miller, one of the top congressional Democrats as head of the House Democratic Policy Committee and chairman of the Education & Labor Committee, noted that the truth squad was formed to deal with a threat that may or may not exist any longer. “We don’t know yet,” he said. “The Clinton campaign may have learned its lesson from South Carolina,” where voters mostly rejected the Clinton tactics, as exit polls make clear. Will former President Clinton, historically popular in California, be a problem for Obama in the nation’s largest primary? “I think there is a rethink underway about what he is doing.”
Progressive Democrats of America
Progressive Democrats of America 2012 endorsement
In 2012, Barbara Lee (CA), was one of 14 leftist Congressional and Senate candidates endorsed by Progressive Democrats of America, an organization dominated by members or affiliates of Democratic Socialists of America and the Institute for Policy Studies.
PDA in California
In Dec. 2012 in Northern California, at the Oakland office of the National Nurses United, Progressive Democrats of America gathered 25 activist organizers who either currently lead PDA chapters or are eager to form a chapter or bring their work into an existing one. PDA leadership from around the state joined PDA Advisory Board Chair Mimi Kennedy and national staffers to welcome special guests: Congresswoman Barbara Lee, her fellow PDA Board Members Dr. Quentin Young and Michael Lighty, as well as Cindy Young, the State Coordinator of the Campaign for a Healthy California, the grassroots coalition group advocating for a Single Payer Healthcare system for all of California. 
PDA 2016 endorsements
In 2016 Progressive Democrats of America endorsed;
- Sen. Bernie Sanders - President
- Rep. Alan Grayson - Senate (FL)
- Rep. Donna Edwards - Senate (MD)
- Jamie Raskin - US House (MD08)
- Tim Canova - US House (FL-23)
- Bao Nguyen - US House (CA46)
- Nanette Barragan - US House (CA44)
- Rep. Keith Ellison (MD05)
- Rep. Raul Grijalva (AZ03)
- Rep. John Conyers (MI13)
- Rep. Barbara Lee (CA13)
- Rep. Jim McGovern (MA02)
- Rep. Mark Pocan (WI02)
- Rep. Rick Nolan (MN08)
- Rep. Hank Johnson - US House (GA05)
- Rep. Jan Schakowsky (IL09)
PDA 2018 endorsement
In 2018 Progressive Democrats of America endorsed Rep. Barbara Lee, CA-13.
Congressional Progressive Caucus
Lee is a former co-chair of the organization.
Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus
Anti Iraq War
An early and outspoken opponent of the Iraq War, the congresswoman repeatedly proposed legislation seeking early U.S. troop withdrawal. In 2007, she successfully blocked funds from being used to establish permanent military bases in Iraq. Her 2008 amendment requiring that any U.S. agreement to defend Iraq be expressly authorized by Congress or be included in a Senate approved treaty was stripped from a defense bill under the threat of a veto by President Bush.
Calling on Israeli Govt. to lift Gaza Travel Ban
On Dec. 22, 2009, thirty-three U.S. Representatives wrote to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, calling on her to request that the Israeli Government end the ban on student travel from Gaza to the West Bank. Barbara Lee was one of the signatories of the letter. The entire letter together with a complete list of signatories can be read by clicking here.
Supported Lifting the Gaza Blockade
On Jan. 27, 2010, U.S. Representatives Keith Ellison and Jim McDermott led 52 other members of Congress in signing a letter addressed to President Barack Obama, calling for him to use diplomatic pressure to resolve the blockade affecting Gaza. Barbara Lee was one of the signatories of the letter.  The entire letter together with a complete list of signatories can be read by clicking here.
Voted against cutting funding for ACORN
In September 2009, following the lead of their Senate colleagues, the House of Representatives voted overwhelmingly to cut off funds to ACORN. the vote was 345-75. All of the 75 were Democrats, and included Barbara Lee. 
America's Future Now!
Barbara Lee was one of the 148 speakers who addressed the 2010 America's Future Now Conference. The Conference was hosted by the Institute for Policy Studies, and Democratic Socialists of America dominated Campaign for America's Future, and held from June 7 - 9 at the Omni Shoreham Hotel, 2500 Calvert Street, Washington D.C.
The Institute for Food and Development Policy/Food First
Barbara Lee is on the list of Congressional Representatives who have participated in hearings/briefings since 1998, with the very radical Institute for Food and Development Policy/Food First, founded by Frances Moore Lappe (Democratic Socialists of America, Institute for Policy Studies) and Joseph Collins (Institute for Policy Studies), authors of the book "Food First".
Take Back the American Dream Conference 2011
Barbara Lee was one of the 158 speakers who addressed the Take Back the American Dream Conference 2011 . The Conference was hosted by the Institute for Policy Studies, and Democratic Socialists of America dominated Campaign for America's Future, 
In 2009, Barbara Lee and 10 other members of the House of Representatives have introduced a bill requesting an investigation into the Bush administration’s role in the 2004 "destabilization campaign and invasion" of Haiti. The original proposed legislation, called the Truth Act, has been submitted annually to the House Committee on Foreign Affairs by Congressperson Lee.
Lee stated in 2004: “We do not teach people to overthrow our U.S. government, and the Bush administration must not participate in the overthrow of other democratically-elected governments. The United States must stand firm in its support of democracy and not allow a nascent democracy like Haiti to fall victim to the Bush administration’s apparent policy of regime change.”
“Regime change takes a variety of forms, and this looks like a blatant form of regime change to me,” Congressperson Lee told Noriega. The bill, now known as H.R. 331, could make the congressional calendar for review in 2009.
The bill’s co-sponsors included Corrine Brown (Fla.), Chaka Fattah (Pa.), Michael Honda (Calif.), Eddie Bernice Johnson (Texas), Dennis Kucinich (Ohio), Eleanor Holmes Norton (D.C.), Donald Payne (N.J.), Charles B. Rangel (N.Y.), Jan Schakowsky (Ill.) and Maxine Waters (Calif.).
Haiti, March 2010
21st Century Democrats
On July 28, 2010, Congresswoman Barbara Lee, Congressman Elijah Cummings and former "Green Jobs Czar", Van Jones spoke about the future of American politics at the kick-off event for 21st Century Democrats' 2010 Youth Leadership Speaker Series. The event was sponsored by Representative John Lewis and Senator Tom Harkin. 21st Century Democrats is led by one-time DSAer, Jim Scheibel.
Staffer's 2010 trip to Latin America
Rep. Lee sent Robert Fuentes, to Honduras and El Salvador for 3 days in May/June 2010. The trip was courtesy of a $4,107.39 grant from the Institute for Policy Studies connected Center for Democracy in the Americas... "Assess the situation in Honduras and El Salvador and current U.S. policy implications in the countries" .
Committee to Stop FBI Repression delegation
In mid November 2010, a delegation from the Committee to Stop FBI Repression ( returned home from several days of bringing the "issue of the FBI raids and grand jury subpoenas of people doing international solidarity work and anti-war organizing to the U.S. Capitol". Three supporters of the Marxist-Leninist Freedom Road Socialist Organization/FightBack!, Deb Konechne of the Committee to Stop FBI Repression, Anh Pham, who is facing a reactivation of her subpoena and Joe Iosbaker, whose home was raided, spent two days meeting with U.S. Representatives on the issue. The delegation asked each Congressperson to sponsor a “Dear Colleague” letter condemning the raids and grand jury subpoenas. In the two days, the delegation met with either the Congressional Representative’s staff or the Representative themselves from the following 16 offices: Tammy Baldwin (WI), John Conyers (MI), Danny Davis (IL), Keith Ellison (MN), Raul Grijalva (AZ), Luis Gutierrez (IL), Mike Honda (CA), Jesse Jackson, Jr. (IL), Dennis Kucinich (OH), Barbara Lee (CA), Jim McDermott (WA), Jim McGovern (MA), Bobby Rush (IL), Linda Sanchez (CA), Jan Schakowsky (IL), Maxine Waters (CA). The "meetings were positive, with all the offices expressing genuine concern about the situation. In some cases, because of the outpouring of calls from around the country, the U.S. Representatives were aware that the delegation was in Washington D.C. and the offices made time on their schedules to meet with the delegation. This reinforces the continuing importance of the solidarity work taking place around the country."
Rep. Conyers (MI), chair of the Judiciary Committee, directed the Counsel of the Judiciary Committee to meet with the delegation. Also, Rep. Ellison (MN) and his Congressional staff met directly with the delegation for a significant amount of time. rep. Ellison sent a letter to U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, expressing concern over the situation and is continuing to work on options to support his constituents affected. The delegation also received face-to-face meetings with Rep Gutierrez and Rep Davis from Chicago. Rep. Grijalva’s (AZ) office set up a meeting between the delegation and the Executive Director of the Congressional Progressive Caucus in the Congress of which rep. Grijalva is the chair. In addition, the office of Jan Schakowsky (IL) and Maxine Waters (CA) gave the delegation significant time and attention.
“It was clear that progressive Representatives of the Congress are very concerned about the FBI investigation. Overall, they were very thankful for our visit and for the information and analysis given to them The level of awareness about the raids and grand jury was varied, from little to full awareness, but the delegation certainly changed that. After the two days, our presence and purpose definitely created a stir in the halls of Congress. “The fact that we were able to interact with 16 legislative aides or Congress people themselves, during an extremely busy time of restructuring leadership in the Congress, exemplifies the attention this matter is receiving”, stated Joe Iosbaker.
CPC San Francisco Jobs forum
After weeks of Republican attacks on President Obama in rural Iowa, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Rep. Barbara Lee on Tuesday August 17, 2011, took to the pulpit of an African American church in Oakland to hear directly from voters and defend the president and Democrats on the most critical issue of the 2012 presidential race - jobs.
"It is a time in our country when the American people know ... that serious job creation must take place," said Pelosi, speaking to reporters before addressing a supportive crowd of hundreds at the Acts Full Gospel Church in East Oakland, one of California's staunchest Democratic strongholds.
"It is a sad time. ... There is no magic formula," Pelosi said. "But we know there are things we can do differently."
She called on both parties and the dozen members of the recently appointed bipartisan congressional deficit "Super Committee" to work together to solve the jobs problem.
"We are a civilized nation, we are not the law of the jungle," she told the often-vocal group gathered in the church's cavernous hall. "We are a civilized community. ... We have to take this to a higher ground."
The event, headlined "Speak Out for Good Jobs Now," aimed to take testimony from Americans on their concerns regarding the economy from an audience overwhelmingly made up of African Americans and labor union loyalists - the heart of the party base and among those hit hardest by the recession.
Dozens filed up to mikes to tell their stories of unemployment. The session, organized by the Congressional Progressive Caucus, was at times raucous, with some heckling or angrily chanting that it is time to "tax the rich."
Barbara Lee, who leads the Congressional Black Caucus, charged that Republicans, on the 224th day of their leadership in the House, had failed to produce a jobs bill or to deliver any solid proposals.
One participant in Tuesday's forum, Phaedra Ellis-Lamkins, CEO of Green For All, an Oakland nonprofit that works for green jobs, said clean energy has the potential to alleviate poverty by bringing high-quality jobs to urban communities. 'The green economy'
"What's most exciting about the green economy is that it offers the possibility to have manufacturing again, to actually create things ... in both the private and the public sector," she said. "And the greatest growth sector right now is clean energy."
Ellis-Lamkins drew applause when she said that, too often, the focus of politicians is "about who is in the back of the room yelling the loudest."
"What the folks in Washington, D.C., would have us do is fight each other," she said. "I want to make sure the story of tonight is that people of color need jobs ... solutions and jobs."
Congressional Black Caucus
Supported by Council for a Livable World
The Council for a Livable World, founded in 1962 by long-time socialist activist and alleged Soviet agent, Leo Szilard, is a non-profit advocacy organization that seeks to "reduce the danger of nuclear weapons and increase national security", primarily through supporting progressive, congressional candidates who support their policies. The Council supported Barbara Lee in her successful House of Representatives run as candidate for California.
Haiti Advocacy Working Group
In 2012, the Haiti Advocacy Working Group, Haitian social movements and Haitian Diaspora groups were working with the U.S. Congressional allies, including members of the Congressional Black Caucus, to raise attention to the current status of Haiti’s reconstruction process at the 2 year commemoration marker.
From January 23-25, 2012, Haitians, HaitianAmericans and other Haitian development experts brought their voices to Capitol Hill.
HAWG allies advocated for a just reconstruction and development process in Haiti, one that prioritizes the needs of women, internally displacedpersons, smallholder farmers, the urban poor, immigrants and other vulnerable Haitians, includes the full participation ofHaitian grassroots groups and the Diaspora and holds the US government accountable for delivery of its commitments.
Monday, January 23 4-6pm: Gender Based Violence Panel, hosted by Representatives Frederica Wilson and Barbara Lee.
- Marie Ange Noel, Fanm Deside
- Emmania Duchard, KOFAVIV
- Marguerite Salomon, GCFV
- Margaret Satterthwaite, NYU
- Ambassador Melanie Verveer, State Dept (invited)
- Tuesday, January 24 9am-10:30am: Rep.’s Barbara Lee, Yvette Clarke & Donald Payne sponsoring panel on health & cholera
- Noon-2pm: Rep. Yvette Clarke sponsoring and TransAfrica Forum hosting a viewing of a documentary, ‘Where did the money go?’, and follow-up briefing, on aid accountability, transparency and procurement.
- 2-4pm: Rep.’s Lee, Wilson, Payne and Clarke co-sponsoring panel on Land and Housing.
International Year for People of African Descent
September 20, 2011, TransAfrica Forum hosted a series of conversations in celebration of the UN International Year for People of African Descent, Capitol Building Room SVC 212-10 Washington, DC.
- The State of the Black Diaspora
- Positioning the Diaspora in a Global World
- Foreign Policy and the 2012 Elections
Lee received $1000 in lobbying funds from Planned Parenthood in 2008.
Lee has been supported by EMILY's List during her campaigning.
Africa Action involvement
- Emira Woods, Board Chair
- Mark Toney, Vice-Chair
- Joe Volk, Secretary
- John Riggan, Treasurer
- Mobolaji Aluko
- Adotei Akwei
- Ajamu Baraka
- Gary Giscombe
- Ayesha Imam
- Nunu Kidane
- Congresswoman Barbara Lee
- Makani Themba-Nixon
- Njoki Njoroge Njehu
- Sonia Sanchez
- Adam Taylor
- Alexandra Toma
- Rev. Dr. Wyatt Tee Walker, President Emeritus
- Jim Winkler
Leading with Love
Members of the Host Committee included Barbara Lee.
Anti-Fracking legislation endorser
On March 14, 2013, Rep. Jared Polis (D-CO) and Rep. Matt Cartwright (D-PA) have introduced the Bringing Reductions to Energy’s Airborne Toxic Health Effect (BREATHE) Act, and the Focused Reduction of Effluence and Stormwater runoff through Hydraulic Environmental Regulation (FRESHER) Act, in order to ensure that the hydraulic fracking industry follows the same rules that other industries do in preserving our natural resources. This legislation is focused on ensuring the safety and the health of the communities where the hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, process is already taking place.
The BREATHE Act would ensure that we close the oil and gas industry’s loophole to the Clean Air Act’s aggregation provision, in addition to adding hydrogen sulfide—a chemical associated with nausea, vomiting, headaches, and irritation of the eyes, nose, and throat—to the Clean Air Act’s federal list of hazardous air pollutants.
The BREATHE Act has the following original co-sponsors including: Reps. Rush Holt, Jr., Raul Grijalva, John Sarbanes, James Moran, Michael Quigley, Earl Blumenauer, Gerry Connolly, Zoe Lofgren, Michael Honda, Paul Tonko, Barbara Lee, David Price, Carolyn Maloney, Michael Capuano, Mark Pocan, Jim McDermott, Eleanor Holmes Norton, Alcee Hastings, Keith Ellison, Niki Tsongas, William Keating, Adam Smith, Jim Langevin, Chellie Pingree, Judy Chu, Louise Slaughter, Jerrold Nadler, Grace Meng, Jan Schakowsky, Nita Lowey, Jared Huffman, Gary Peters and Alan Lowenthal.
The following organizations have endorsed this legislation and are actively working to garner support within Congress and throughout the country: Physicians for Social Responsibility, Natural Resources Defense Council, Earthjustice, Alliance of Nurses for Healthy Environments, Sierra Club, Earthworks, Breast Cancer Action, Clean Water Action, Environment America, Greenpeace, Nature Abounds, Oil Change International, Citizens for a Healthy Community, Citizens for Huerfano County, Clean Water Action Colorado, Erie Rising, Grassroots Energy Activist Network, Holy Terror Farm, San Luis Valley Ecosystem Council, SOS Foundation, Western Colorado Congress of Mesa County, Western Slope Conservation Center and Wilderness Workshop.
Phillip Burton Awards Committee
In 2013, the Honorary Phillip Burton Awards Committee, of the Immigrant Legal Resource Center, consisted of;
- Jeff Adachi, San Francisco Public Defender
- The Honorable David Campos, San Francisco Board of Supervisors
- The Honorable David Chiu, President of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors
- Carmen Chu, San Francisco Assessor-Recorder
- The Honorable Malia Cohen, San Francisco Board of Supervisors
- The Honorable Anna Eshoo, US Representative for California
- The Honorable Mark Farrell, San Francisco Board of Supervisors
- The Honorable Dianne Feinstein, US Senator for California
- The Honorable Barbara Lee, US Representative for California
- The Honorable Zoe Lofgren, US Representative for California
- The Honorable Eric Mar, San Francisco Board of Supervisors
- The Honorable George Miller, US Representative for California
- The Honorable Nancy Pelosi, Democratic Leader of the US House of Representatives
- The Honorable Jackie Speier, US Representative for California
- The Honorable Katy Tang, San Francisco Board of Supervisors
- The Honorable Scott Wiener, San Francisco Board of Supervisors
- The Honorable Norman Yee, San Francisco Board of Supervisors
House calls for ending Afghanistan war
In a historic move June 13, 2013, the House of Representatives effectively said there is no congressional authorization for a permanent U.S. military presence in Afghanistan. The move was part of an overwhelmingly approved bipartisan measure calling for a complete and speedy end to the 12-year war there. For the first time, a majority of House Republicans supported the legislation.
In addition to calling for a speedy end to the war the measure specifically says that any decision to keep troops in Afghanistan beyond 2014 would require the permission of Congress.
The move, in the form of an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act, was led by Reps. Jim McGovern, D-Mass.; Walter B. Jones, R-N.C.; Barbara Lee, D-Calif.; John Garamendi, D-Calif.; and Adam Smith, D-Wash. Smith is the leading Democrat on the House Armed Services Committee.
The measure, "to require the President to complete the accelerated transition of combat operations from U.S. Armed Forces to the Government of Afghanistan no later than by the end of 2013; the accelerated transition of military and security operations by the end of 2014, including the redeployment of U.S. troops; and to pursue robust negotiations to address Afghanistan's and the region's security and stability," passed by 305-121.
Over half the Republican House caucus voted for the measure, including six members from Texas, 11 from Florida and four of five from Kentucky. By contrast, in 2009 only seven House Republicans supported McGovern's amendment requiring the Pentagon to report to Congress on a strategy for U.S. military forces to leave Afghanistan by the end of that year.
Just nine Democrats opposed McGovern's latest amendment.
The vote is also seen as important because it is the first time the House of Representatives as a body has registered its opposition to the war.
According to data the Venezuelan delegation to Washington filed with the Foreign Agents Registration of the US, Venezuelan officials had 82 contacts with personalities in the United States. The list includes meetings with lawmakers, NGOs, and representatives of US actor Danny Glover's office.
The website of the US Government's Foreign Agents Registration published a report by Olivia Goumbri, who identifies herself as the Venezuelan Embassy's Social Outreach Counselor. The document elaborates on the Venezuelan officials' contacts with US political, cultural, and academic leaders.
Pursuant to the US law, foreign government agents in the United States have to report such activities to the NSD.
The document includes a questionnaire in which Goumbri was asked whether her foreign principal (the Embassy of Venezuela) had engaged in any political activity in the US. Goumbri's response was Yes.
Several congressional representatives, a pro-Cuban organization, religious leaders, social organizations, and actor Danny Glover's office are among the 82 registered contacts between Venezuelan diplomats and US-based individuals or organizations. Such activities took place from November 2012 to April 30, 2013.
Barbara Lee, Sheila Jackson-Lee, Yvette Clarke, Gregory Meeks, Karen Bass and Jose Serrano - an admirer of late President Hugo Chávez- are some of the members of the House of Representatives who were contacted by the Venezuelan diplomatic mission through their parliamentary offices .
June 18, Rep. Justin Amash (R-MI), Chairman of the House Liberty Caucus, and Rep. John Conyers, Jr. (D-MI), the Ranking Member on the House Judiciary Committee, announced the introduction of bipartisan legislation to address National Security Agency surveillance.
H.R. 2399, the Limiting Internet and Blanket Electronic Review of Telecommunications and Email Act (LIBERT-E Act), restricts the federal government’s ability under the Patriot Act to collect information on Americans who are not connected to an ongoing investigation. The bill also requires that secret Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) court opinions be made available to Congress and summaries of the opinions be made available to the public.
A coalition of 32 Members of Congress joined Conyers and Amash in introducing the bill. After introduction, Conyers and Amash issued the following statement:
The following Members of Congress cosponsored the legislation:
Rep. Paul Broun (R-GA) Rep. Judy Chu (D-CA) Rep. Suzan DelBene (D-WA) Rep. John Duncan (R-TN) Rep. William Enyart (D-IL) Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) Rep. Chris Gibson (R-NY) Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ) Rep. Morgan Griffith (R-VA) Rep. Raúl Grijalva (D-AZ) Rep. Rush Holt, Jr. (D-NJ) Rep. Sheila Jackson-Lee (D-TX) Rep. Hank Johnson (D-GA) Rep. Walter B. Jones (R-NC) Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA) Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA) Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY) Rep. Tom McClintock (R-CA) Rep. Jim McDermott (D-WA) Rep. James McGovern (D-MA) Rep. Mike Michaud (D-ME) Rep. Mick Mulvaney (R-SC) Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-TX) Rep. Steve Pearce (R-NM) Rep. Jared Polis (D-CO) Rep. Trey Radel (R-FL) Rep. Matt Salmon (R-AZ) Rep. Mark Sanford (R-SC) Rep. Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) Rep. Peter Welch (D-VT) Rep. Ted Yoho (R-FL) 
An almost terrorist meeting
Mohammad Al Ahmady, the Yemen director for Geneva-based NGO Al Karama, was expected to brief Reps. Alan Grayson (D., Fla.), Barbara Lee (D., Calif.), and Jan Schakowsky (D., Ill.) the morning of the Nov. 19 2013, according to press release from Grayson’s office.
Ahmady, who also serves as a top official in an al Qaeda-linked Yemeni political party, did not attend because of visa issues. The State Department said it could not comment on visa matters.
Several Al Karama officials have faced terrorism allegations. Al Karama’s founder and current president Abdul Rahman Naimi was designated as a terrorist and al Qaeda supporter by the U.S. Treasury Department in December 2013, along with the group’s Yemen representative Abdulwahab Al-Humayqani. Al Karama’s legal director, Rachid Mesli, is currently wanted for terrorism charges in Algeria.
Schakowsky’s office referred questions to Grayson and Lee, saying the other offices led the briefing.
“She is listed as a member attending the briefing, the briefing was led by the other 2 offices,” said a spokesperson in an email.
A spokesperson for Grayson said Ahmady did not actually attend the briefing and that the terrorist designation of Al Karama’s president was “not in place at the time of the briefing, so again, we had no reason to suspect any wrongdoing on the part of Mohammad [Al Ahmady].”
Nelson Mandela's funeral
In December 2013, the following Democratic legislators traveled to South Africa to attended Nelson Mandela's funeral Democrats Dels. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D.C.) and Donna Christensen (V.I.); and Democratic Reps. Marcia Fudge, John Conyers (Mich.), Charles Rangel (N.Y.), John Lewis, Jim McDermott (Wash.), Maxine Waters (Calif.), Bobby Scott (Va.), Mel Watt (N.C.), Sheila Jackson-Lee (Tex.), Elijah Cummings (Md.), Gregory Meeks (N.Y.), Barbara Lee (Calif.), G.K. Butterfield (N.C.), Gene Green (Tex.), Gwen Moore (Wis.), Yvette Clarke (N.Y.), Karen Bass (Calif.), Joyce Beatty (Ohio) and Terri Sewell (Ala.).
Congressional Letter for Neutrality, 2014 Salvadoran Elections
On Monday December 16, 2014 Reps. Juan Vargas (D-CA), Mike Honda (D-CA) and Mark Pocan (D-WI) sent a letter to Sec. of State John Kerry – signed by 51 Members of Congress – calling for a public statement of neutrality by the State Department before the first round of El Salvador’s presidential elections on February 2, 2014.
The letter, , highlighted several “important steps” that the current government has taken to “strengthen its democratic system and expand the right to vote to all citizens,” including those living outside of the country, who will be voting by absentee ballot for the first time in February. Since the election of Mauricio Funes, the first President from the Marxist Farabundo Martí National Liberation Front (FMLN) party, the government has increased the number of polling places four-fold to increase accessibility, especially in rural areas.
“We’re glad to see so many Members of Congress expressing respect for the right of the Salvadoran people to determine their own future. That’s an attitude that’s sorely lacking in much of the US’ policy in Central America, especially with regard to economic policy,” said Alexis Stoumbelis, Executive Director for the pro-communist Committee in Solidarity with the People of El Salvador (CISPES), in Washington, DC, which has observed every post-war election in El Salvador, starting in 1994.
Signatories included Rep. Barbara Lee..
JStreet endorsed her again in 2016.
- . She has also been a strong ally of the pro-Israel, pro-peace movement and promoted continued aid to the Palestinian Authority and Israel. Furthermore, Lee introduced a resolution promoting a diplomatic approach toward preventing Iran from becoming a nuclear power. Her extensive travel in Israel and the West Bank informs her passionate advocacy on behalf of a two-state solution.
J Street delegation
July 2017 seven members of Congress and 13 American Jewish leaders traveled to Israel and the West Bank on J Street’s eighth and largest congressional mission last week, led by the J Street Education Fund (JSEF).
Representatives Ami Bera (CA-7), Earl Blumenauer (OR-3), Cheri Bustos (IL-17), Dwight Evans (PA-2), Barbara Lee (CA-13), Brenda Lawrence (MI-14) and Bonnie Watson Coleman (NJ-12) joined the J Street delegation.
During their time in the region, J Street’s eighth Congressional delegation engaged with a diverse array of Israeli and Palestinian voices. Members of Congress sat down with leading Israeli, Palestinian and American political leaders and government officials.
Throughout their visit to Israel and the Palestinian territory, participants explored the complex and nuanced realities of the region. Their extensive travels included trips to Jerusalem, Ramallah, Hebron and Tel Aviv. They discussed the ongoing crisis in Gaza during visits to Israeli towns on its border. They met with key players from across the political spectrum, including Israeli settlers, Palestinian business leaders, social activists and security experts.
“With the US poised to continue playing an active role in pursuing Israeli-Palestinian peace, it was essential that lawmakers see firsthand what is happening on the ground,” said J Street president Jeremy Ben-Ami. “As shifting regional dynamics open up new possibilities for peace and cooperation, this trip provided a critical opportunity for members of Congress to reflect on their role in helping to bring us closer to a two-state solution.”
2014 WOLA Awards
- Former Rep. David Bonior
- Rep. John Conyers (D-MI)
- Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT)
- Sen. Christopher Dodd
- Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN)
- Rep. Eliot Engel (D-NY)
- Rep. Sam Farr (D-CA)
- Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-AZ)
- Sen. Tom Harkin (D-IA)
- Rep. Mike Honda (D-CA)
- Rep. Hank Johnson (D-GA)
- Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA)
- Rep. Sander Levin (D-MI)
- Rep. John Lewis (D-GA)
- Rep. James McGovern (D-MA)
- Rep. James Moran (D-VA)
- Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA)
- Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-IL)
- Former U.S. Sec. of Labor Hilda Solis
- Sen. Jon Tester (D-MT)
Peace Action PAC has helped elect such peace leaders as:
- Rep. Jim McGovern (D-MA) — A leader in bringing the troops home from Afghanistan and ending the Iraq War
- Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA) — Another leader in stopping endless wars and cutting the Pentagon budget
- Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-AZ) — Co-chair of the Progressive Caucus
Vietnam - The Power of Protest - Telling the Truth - Learning the Lessons was held Friday and Saturday, May 1-2, in Washington, D.C.
The conference "has a star-studded program of progressive leaders of the past half century": Dolores Huerta, Danny Glover, Daniel Ellsberg, Phil Donahue, former Congresspersons Patricia Schroeder, Ron Dellums and current Reps. Barbara Lee and John Conyers, singer Holly Near, and more.
H.R. 1534, The Smarter Approach to Nuclear Expenditures Act
The 2015 Bill H.R. 1534 would reduce the number of nuclear-armed submarines operated by the Navy, to prohibit the development of a new long-range penetrating bomber aircraft, to prohibit the procurement of new intercontinental ballistic missiles.
Sponsor: Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR-3rd district). Co-sponsors were Reps James McGovern, Mark Pocan, Peter DeFazio, John Conyers, Raul Grijalva, Michael Quigley, Eleanor Holmes Norton, Sam Farr, Jackie Speier, Barbara Lee, Donna Edwards, John Lewis, Jared Polis, Louise Slaughter.
Signers of New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio's May 12, 2015 launched The Progressive Agenda to Combat Income Inequality included US Rep. Barbara Lee.
Congressmembers call on Obama to rescind Venezuela sanctions
May 15, 2015, Sixteen Democratic members of the U.S. House of Representatives signed a letter calling on President Obama to withdraw sanctions on seven Venezuelan government officials, and also to withdraw the language of an executive order justifying the sanctions.
The sanctions to which the letter refers were based on legislation voted by Congress in December and signed by the president on Dec. 18. On Mar. 9, after the arrest of several Venezuelan political figures whom Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro accused of plotting a coup, President Obama issued an executive order declaring an "emergency" on the basis of a supposed "unusual and extraordinary threat" to the United States and its interests by Venezuela, and imposed the sanctions, mostly on mid-level security personnel.
The sanctions prevent them from traveling to the United States and freeze any assets they might have in this country.
The congresspersons who signed the letter were: Hank Johnson, John Conyers, Barbara Lee, Raul Grijalva, Keith Ellison, Jose Serrano, Sam Farr, Karen Bass, Jan Schakowsky, Jim McDermott, Bobby Rush, Sheila Jackson-Lee, Mike Capuano, Charles Rangel, Chellie Pingree, and Earl Blumenauer.
Amy Goodman interview
In July 2015, Amy Goodman interviewed several commentators on the resumption of US-Cuba diplomatic relations.
- Hundreds of dignitaries from Cuba and the United States gathered in Washington on Monday to mark the reopening of the Cuban Embassy after being closed for more than five decades. We speak to Congressmembers Raúl Grijalva and Barbara Lee; actor Danny Glover; former U.S. diplomat Wayne Smith; attorneys Michael Smith and Michael Ratner, who co-authored "Who Killed Che?: How the CIA Got Away with Murder"; Phyllis Bennis and James Early of the Institute for Policy Studies; and others.
AMY GOODMAN: Congressmember Barbara Lee of the greater Oakland, California, area is here. Your thoughts today?
REP. BARBARA LEE: Ah, well, this is what change is all about. And I think our president really, you know, stepped up. He understood the importance of having normal diplomatic relations between our two countries. And I think this is a great day. I was actually here in Washington, D.C., in 1977, when this became the interest section. And I’ve been to Cuba many, many times, over 20-some times, trying to get to this point, in terms of the small efforts that I’ve been mounting. So I’m very happy. We have a long way to go to lift the embargo and allow for full travel—
AMY GOODMAN: What’s it going to take?
REP. BARBARA LEE: Getting our legislation passed. We have legislation that would end the embargo, and we’ve got to get members of Congress to vote for it. And you know how that is. But we’re going to keep working on that. And we’ll see that day, too.
AMY GOODMAN: Do you think Guantánamo will be closed?
REP. BARBARA LEE: I don’t know. I think all issues are on the table. And that’s what the beauty of having diplomatic relations brings. I mean, you have to be able to discuss all of the issues—Guantánamo, the Cubans have a host of issues, America has a host of issues. But we can’t even talk—until today. So, this is great. 
Letter on Iran sanctions
The National Iranian American Council commended Rep. James Moran (D-VA) and "all twenty-one Members of Congress who sent a letter to President Obama April 4, 2014, supporting necessary action to ensure medicine and humanitarian goods are not unintentionally blocked for the Iranian people. NIAC strongly supported the letter and has consistently worked to raise awareness regarding the impact of sanctions on the Iranian people"...
- The preliminary nuclear agreement brokered by the P5+1 and Iran included an agreement to establish a financial channel to facilitate humanitarian trade; however, medicine shortages have continued in part due to extensive financial sanctions on Iran and the reported unwillingness of banks to facilitate legal, humanitarian transactions.
Signers: James P. Moran (D-VA), Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), Andre Carson (D-IN), William Lacy Clay (D-MO), John Conyers, Jr. (D-MI), Peter DeFazio (D-OR), Keith Ellison (D-MN), Sam Farr (D-CA), Raul Grijalva (D-AZ), Rush Holt, Jr. (D-NJ), Mike Honda (D-CA), Hank Johnson (D-GA), Barbara Lee (D-CA), Betty McCollum (D-MN), Jim McDermott (D-WA), James McGovern (D-MA), Gregory Meeks (D-NY), Beto O'Rourke (D-TX), Chellie Pingree (D-ME), Charles B. Rangel (D-NY), Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-IL).
Condemning Criticism of Islam legislation
On December 17, 2015, Rep. Don Beyer, Jr. introduced legislation condemning "violence, bigotry, and hateful rhetoric towards Muslims in the United States." The legislation is based on unsourced claims that there is a "rise of hateful and anti-Muslim speech, violence, and cultural ignorance," and a "disproportionate targeting" of "Muslim women who wear hijabs, headscarves, or other religious articles of clothing...because of their religious clothing, articles, or observances." The resolution, H.Res.569 - Condemning violence, bigotry, and hateful rhetoric towards Muslims in the United States 
The legislation was cosponsored by Rep. Michael Honda, Rep. Keith Ellison, Rep. Joseph Crowley, Rep. Andre Carson, Rep. Eleanor Holmes Norton, Rep. Betty McCollum, Rep. Marcy Kaptur, Rep. Carolyn Maloney, Rep. Dan Kildee, Rep. Loretta Sanchez, Rep. Charles Rangel, Rep. Scott Peters, Rep. Brad Ashford, Rep. Alan Grayson, Rep. Mark Takai, Rep. Brian Higgins, Rep. William Keating, Rep. Raul Grijalva, Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Rep. G.K. Butterfield, Rep. Gerry Connolly, Rep. Ruben Gallego, Rep. Cheri Bustos, Rep. John Delaney, Rep. Kathy Castor, Rep. Luis Gutierrez, Rep. Michael Quigley, Rep. Elizabeth Esty, Rep. Joseph Kennedy III, Rep. Robin Kelly, Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson, Rep. Gregory Meeks, Rep. Grace Meng, Rep. Al Green, Rep. Katherine Clark, Rep. Adam Schiff, Rep. Alcee Hastings, Rep. Sam Farr, Rep. Frank Pallone, Rep. Jim McDermott, Rep. Barbara Lee, Rep. Donna Edwards, Rep. Robert Brady, Rep. Frederica Wilson, Rep. Michael Doyle, Rep. Albio Sires, Rep. Suzan DelBene, Rep. Judy Chu, Rep. Jared Polis, Rep. David Loebsack, Rep. Bill Pascrell, Rep. Debbie Dingell, Rep. Jan Schakowsky, Rep. Steve Cohen, Rep. Ruben Hinojosa, Rep. John Yarmuth, Rep. Niki Tsongas, Rep. Jim Langevin, Rep. Mark Pocan, Rep. John Conyers, Jr., Rep. Mark Takano, Rep. Tim Ryan, Rep. Jose Serrano, Rep. Hank Johnson, Rep. Paul Tonko, Rep. Zoe Lofgren, Rep. Chris Van Hollen, Rep. Lois Capps, Rep. David Price, Rep. Doris Matsui, Rep. Gwen Moore, Rep. Denny Heck, Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee, Rep. John Carney, Rep. Xavier Becerra, Rep. Eric Swalwell, Rep. John B. Larson, Rep. Dina Titus, Rep. Peter Welch, Rep. Lloyd Doggett, Rep. Jim Himes, Rep. Matt Cartwright.
“For the past twenty years, CAIR has been a staunch defender of the civil rights of American Muslims nationwide.”
Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.) (September 2014). 
“For more than twenty-three years, CAIR has been a tireless advocate for civil rights and religious freedom in our diverse nation.”
Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.) (October 2017).
Agent Orange Bill
For two weeks December 2015, the leadership of the Vietnam Association for the Victims of Agent Orange/Dioxin (VAVA) visited New York City and Washington, DC. They had a very busy schedule that included colleagues and friends, Senators, legislative aides, and Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D-CA) to thank them all for their continuing support for the victims of the US spraying of chemical herbicides during the American War in Vietnam. Mr. Rinh, President of VAVA, expressed his appreciation to Congresswoman Lee for sponsoring HR 2114, the Victims of Agent Orange Relief Act of 2015, that would provide services for those harmed in Vietnam from this poison, as well as clean up land and ecosystems that remain contaminated and continue to destroy the food and the people.
The VAVA delegation was joined by the Vietnam Agent Orange Relief and Responsibility Campaign (VAORRC) — supported by VVAW, IVAW, Veterans for Peace (VFP), and the Children of Vietnam Veterans Health Alliance (COVVHA). Heather Bowser, co-founder of COVVHA, was born missing her right leg and with webbed fingers and toes. She is the daughter of an American serviceman who was in Vietnam during the use of Agent Orange. Heather explained that this legislation would bring parity of services to the children of both the women and men in the US military who served in Vietnam. Currently, the VA recognizes only the children born with birth defects of American servicewomen, and, with the recently released Institute of Medicine Report, has downgraded recognition for even spina bifida for the children of American servicemen.
2016 Platform Drafting Committee
Bernie Sanders supporters Dr. Cornel West and Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) will be among those on the Democratic Party's important Platform Drafting Committee after the Vermont senator won a key concession as he looks to leave his mark on the party's platform.
The roster of the drafting committee, released by the Democratic National Committee May 2016, reflects the party's agreement that Sanders would have five supporters on the committee, compared to six for Hillary Clinton.
Sanders previously panned DNC Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz, who appoints all of the committee members, for failing to include enough of his supporters on an initial list. But the latest statement notes that Wasserman Schultz allocated the campaign's seats "proportionally according to the current vote tally."
Clinton loyalists on the committee are Ambassador Wendy Sherman, former Clinton staffer and current Center for American Progress head Neera Tanden, Ohio Rep. Alicia Reece, environmentalist Carol Browner, Illinois Rep. Luis Gutierrez and union head Paul Booth.
The remaining four members were chosen by Wasserman Schultz.
Maryland Rep. Elijah Cummings, who has endorsed Clinton, will lead the committee and called Sanders's outsized role on the platform "pretty unusual" for a candidate that likely will not be the party's nominee during a Monday interview on MSNBC. And California Rep. Barbara Lee, who has not endorsed either candidate.
Fighting ACA repeal
Before an assembly, February 2017, that packed the gymnasium of Fruitvale's International Community School, Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D-13) affirmed her commitment to resisting the Trump administration's attempts to repeal the Affordable Care Act.
Lee praised recent progressive gains — overturning the Muslim travel ban, the resignation of Michael Flynn, the withdrawal of Andrew Puzder as Labor Secretary — and stressed the critical role of her district in resisting the repeal of the ACA and other policies of the administration.
"So goes the East Bay, so goes the state, so goes the country," said Lee.
The fight to retain ACA comes with high stakes for the district — according to Ralph Silber, Executive Director of the Alameda Health Consortium, 350,000 East Bay residents are enrolled in the ACA; for 70,000 of those, it's the first time they've had healthcare coverage.
When asked about the recent proposal for single-payer healthcare in California — which the California Nurses Association and Democratic Socialists of America were present to promote — Lee and Chan each said that such a bill must not detract from the efforts to resist the repealing of ACA. 
Peace movement support
February 1, 2017, United for Peace and Justice has joined with the U.S. Peace Council, Veterans for Peace and several other national peace organizations to initiate a public campaign in support of Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard’s (D-Hawaii) STOP ARMING TERRORISTS ACT (H.R. 608), which she originally introduced to the Congress on December 8, 2016.
Please sign the petition urging support for the Stop Arming Terrorists Act.
H.R. 608 is a bipartisan bill, which has been co-sponsored by Rep. Barbara Lee (D-California), Rep. Thomas Massie (R-Kentucky), Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vermont), Rep. Walter B. Jones (R-North Carolina), and Rep. Ted Yoho (R-Florida).
The Stop Arming Terrorists Act aims “To prohibit the use of United States Government funds to provide assistance to Al Qaeda, Jabhat Fateh al-Sham, and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) and to countries supporting those organizations…”. More specifically, it demands that “Notwithstanding any other provision of law, no funds made available to any Federal department or agency may be used to provide covered assistance to Al Qaeda, Jabhat Fateh al-Sham, and ISIL, and any individual or group that is affiliated with, associated with, cooperating with, or adherents to such groups.”
We believe that the Stop Arming Terrorists Act is a courageous and important first step toward ending the U.S. Government’s policy of forced regime change in other countries with the help of terrorist organizations. This policy has led to endless wars in the past decades, and has cost trillions of dollars at the expense of American taxpayers.
H.R. 608 has been referred to both the House Intelligence Committee and the House Foreign Affairs Committee. Given the present state of politics in our country, the chance of these committees approving the bill seems very slim in the absence of massive public expression of support for it.
Letter on US-Mexico security Co-operation
- Urgent alert from our friends at CISPES- Los Angeles Chapter : "The US plans to expand cooperation between Mexico and the United States to unfairly and inhumanely target Central American migrants and asylum seekers at the upcoming "Conference on Prosperity and Security in Central America".
- We asked Representative Alan Lowenthal of Long Beach to author a letter to Secretary Tillerson calling for to put the human rights of Central Americans and all migrants and refugees front and center, and he's circulating a letter now. To have the biggest impact possible we need as many Members of Congress as possible to sign this letter!
- Call or email your representative today and ask them to join Mr. Lowenthal as a co-signer.
Representative Alan Lowenthal (D-CA) led 37 Members of Congress, including top Democrats from the Armed Forces, Judiciary and Appropriations committees, in sending a letter to Secretary of State Rex Tillerson to raise red flags about “suggestions that the United States deepen security collaboration with Mexico along its southern border [with Guatemala] due to evidence that Mexico’s Southern Border Program has led to wide-spread human rights violations and abuses against migrants and asylum-seekers.”
Signers: Don Beyer (D-VA), Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR), Mike Capuano (D-MA), Tony Cardenas (D-CA), Judy Chu (D-CA), Emanuel Cleaver (D-MO), John Conyers (D-MI), Lloyd Doggett (D-TX), Keith Ellison (D-MN), Dwight Evans (D-PA), Ruben Gallego (D-AZ), Raul Grijalva (D-AZ), Luis Gutierrez (D-IL), Alcee Hastings (D-FL), Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-Washington, DC), Pramila Jayapal (D-WA), Hank Johnson (D-GA), Marcy Kaptur (D-OH), Barbara Lee (D-CA) , Zoe Lofgren (D-CA), Michelle Lujan Grisham (D-NM), Stephen Lynch (D-MA), Betty McCollum (D-MN), James McGovern (D-MA), Seth Moulton (D-MA), Mark Pocan (D-WI), Grace Napolitano (D-CA), Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA), Jose Serrano (D-NY), Jan Schakowsky (D-IL), Louise Slaughter (D-NY), Adam Smith (D-WA), Paul Tonko (D-NY), Maxine Waters (D-CA), John Yarmuth (D-KY).
“What do you have to lose?"
Hundreds of U.S. Representative Barbara Lee’s constituents gathered in East Oakland Aug. 2017, for a town hall meeting she hosted with the theme, “What do you have to lose? The Impacts of Trump on African Americans.”
Panelists included Marc Morial, president of the National Urban League; state Assemblymember Tony Thurmond and Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) Director Lateefah Simon. Angela Glover Blackwell of PolicyLink moderated the discussion.
“You remember that during the campaign, Donald Trump said to the black community, ‘What do you have to lose?’ Well, we have to look at what we are losing,” Lee said.
She cited the Congressional Black Caucus’ response – “In no way are you going to take us back. We’re going to fight, resist, and move forward.”
Picking up on that theme, Morial – a former mayor of New Orleans – highlighted risk areas the Trump administration’s policies pose for African Americans, all people of color, and “all people who love justice in 21st century America.” Citing the Urban League’s annual report, The State of Black America, Morial called attention to profound inequities in health, housing, education and social justice.
Voter suppression is the number one risk posed by the Trump administration, said Morial, followed by efforts to strip health care away from millions of people, and the assault on the federal budget.
“The battle we are in today is not a political battle; it is a moral battle,” he said. “We must ‘stay woke,’ we must act.”
The “War on Drugs” has had profoundly destructive consequences over the last four decades, BART Director Simon said. “One trillion has gone to over 20 million arrests and convictions since 1977, within the drug paradigm.”
Simon warned of the great danger posed by Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ declaration that he will double down on the war against drugs. Millions of dollars are being spent on “caging people and nothing on healing them,” she told the audience,” adding, “We do have power; we have to continue to be the moral conscience of that power.”
“Our state is spending $5 billion per year to incarcerate people in private prisons, run by people who are profiting from the suffering of our families and our loved ones,” California Assemblymember Tony Thurmond, D-Richmond told the crowd. “We need to get to a place of prevention and re-entry. Let’s educate, not incarcerate.” Thurmond introduced Assembly Bill 43 earlier this year. AB 43 would tax private prisons and spend the resulting revenue on programs shown to prevent incarceration, including universal preschool and after-school programs.
While African Americans experience the disproportionately high rates of incarceration, Thurmond said, AB 43 will benefit everyone. “Trump is out to hurt not only African Americans, he’s out to hurt everybody. We have to stay connected and fight for everyone.”
Mark Pocan’s Letter to the DHS on Colombian Paramilitaries
January 18, 2017 To Jeh Johnson DHS;
Representatives Mark Pocan, James McGovern, Barbara Lee, and Hank Johnson urge Congress members to consider actions that will allow Colombian Paramilitary leaders to be held accountable for their role in the Colombian Conflict and take on their role in the Colombian Peace Process. This letter urges for the removal of protectional classification of Colombian paramilitary leaders who have been detained in the US only for drug charges and instead urges for their return to Colombia. In Colombia, these paramilitary leaders are subject to serve charges of grave crimes including forced disappearances and murder in Colombia.
"Anti-trans violence resolution"
Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.), introduced a resolution in September 2017 against anti-trans violence, specifically noting violence against transgender women of color.
Ellison said in a statement Monday the Transgender Day of Remembrance “takes on even more significance” in 2017 as a result of the significant rate of violence against transgender people.
“We also recognize that the victims of this violence are almost all transgender women and transgender women of color,” Ellison said. “This is an important day, but we should not consider our jobs done because we’ve observed this one day. Instead, we must commit ourselves to the principle of liberty and justice for all and ensure everyone is safe to live and thrive in their community.”
Ellison’s resolution observes transgender women of color are more likely than white transgender women to face mistreatment by police, an assumption they’re sex workers and incarceration in prison.
Among other things, the resolution calls for ending racial profiling in law enforcement practices; ending the practice of placing transgender people in solitary confinement; and ending the practice of immigration detention for vulnerable populations, including transgender people.
State of OUR Union
Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal January 30 2018.
I'm thrilled to be speaking tonight at the State of OUR Union with all-stars like Congresswoman Barbara Lee, Rep. Judy Chu, Tarana Burke of the #MeToo movement, Cecile Richards, Kristin Rowe-Finkbeiner of MomsRising.org, Alicia Garza and Ai-jen Poo. #SOTU.
The following have worked as staff members for Barbara Lee:
- Norma Arishe Aguirre
- Saundra Andrews
- Sarah Andropoulos
- Miguel Ayala
- Justin Baker
- Claudia Barcenas
- Keiana Barrett
- Alicia M. Barron
- Pamela Ann Barry
- Selviana Bates
- Gregory Alan Berry
- Charles Bradshaw
- Paul Brathwaite
- Nathan Britton
- Roberta Cheff Brooks
- Bernadita Brown
- Miguel Bustos
- Marvin Keith Carson
- Patricia Castaneda-Davis
- Gloria Si-Chun Chan
- April Chan
- Christopher Stuart Chapman (Stuart)
- Connie Choi
- Sonya Clay
- Michon Coleman
- Marissa Coughlin
- Timothy Cromartie
- Christopher Crowe (Chris)
- Nicholas Danoff
- Judith Devries
- Devona Dolliole
- Scott Exner
- Lynnette Farhadian
- Tina Flores
- Robert Fuentes
- Juan Garcia
- Kimberlee Garfinkle
- Lillian German
- Jeffrey Alan Glickman
- Ann Goett
- Betsy Goldman
- Carlos Gonzalez
- Karla Goodbody
- J. William Goold (Bill)
- Ricci Grahman
- Julie Hadnot
- Judith Hasson
- Teddie Hathaway
- Marie Howard
- Maha Ibrahim
- Geoffrey Johnson
- Tania Jones
- Aranthan Jones (A.J.)
- Laura Joshua
- Tatyana Kalinga
- Monifa Kelly-Hong
- Myat Moe Khaing
- Cietta Kiandoli
- Nicole King
- David Klein
- Mousa Kolahdooz
- Katherine Kwong
- John Laughner
- Jeanette Lazam
- Ricky Xuan Le
- Stacey Leavandosky
- Danielle LeClair
- Chris Sangyeop Lee
- Joe Leonard
- Leslie Littleton
- Cassidy Lundin
- Amber Maltbie
- Alexis Summer Marks
- Andrea Martin
- Benjamin Mayr
- Thomas McDaniels, Jr. (Tom)
- Elaine Pomeroy McKeller
- Christina McWilson
- Cleve Mesidor
- Aysha House Moshi
- Kenneth Wayne Nealy (Ken)
- Venkateswar Neralla (Ven)
- Nancy Nghiew
- Sean Nichols
- Julie Nickson
- Dominique Nisperos
- Robert Odom
- Jesse Offenhartz
- John Jioni Palmer (Jioni)
- Brenda Parish
- Casey Payton
- Jamila Pierson-Jase
- Jessica Pitt
- Adante Pointer
- Luis Quinonez
- Daniela Quintanilla
- Lauren Riggs
- Michael Riggs
- Shereda Robinson
- Michael Rubiano
- Irene Schwoeffermann
- Edlecia Sherrod
- Shannon Lee Smith
- Andrew Sousa
- Sandre Swanson
- Anne Taylor
- Jeffrey Thomas
- Jennifer Thompson
- Jamila Thompson
- Douglass Thornell (Doug)
- Jennifer Todd
- Pedro Toledo
- Candice Tolliver
- Christos Andros Tsentas
- Victoria Tung
- Aprill O. Turner
- Ziv Tzviell
- Sasha Werblin
- Tony Williams
- Nicole Williams
- Jeanne Patrice Willoughby (Patrice)
- Pea-Pea Yu
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