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Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Going to Pittsburgh? Join us for the Pacific Northwest caucus at Netroots Nation

Netroots Nation, here we come!

In just over a week, the netroots community will be meeting in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania for its fourth annual gathering to talk about infrastructure building, strategy, and blending tried and true methods of community organizing with new online techniques. Daniel and I are very much looking forward to representing NPI in the City of Bridges next weekend, and we're also pleased to announce today that NPI will host a Pacific Northwest caucus inside the convention on Thursday at noon.

The caucus is open to Washingtonians, Oregonians, and Idahoans, as well as any conventiongoer who is interested in talking about local, state, and regional politics with us. The caucus will focus on three things:

Increasing cooperation at the regional level. The Pacific Northwest has much in common, yet we don't often talk about issues across state boundaries. Learning to listen to each other better would be a good first step, as well as identifying several key issues where we'd like to collaborate (for example - and okay, granted, this is an easy one - preventing the Bonneville Power Administration from being used as a cash cow by the federal government).

2010 Electoral Landscape. In the next cycle, Oregon will choose its next governor, Washington will decide whether to send Patty Murray back to D.C. for a fourth term, Idaho will decide whether it wants Mike Crapo to continue representing the Gem State in the U.S. Senate, Walt Minnick will likely face a tough opponent in his bid to remain in the House, and Suzan DelBene will be challenging Dave Reichert in the Eighth Congressional District. We'll take a look at the 2010 electoral landscape and the implications for our region.

Creating an ongoing dialogue. We've only got an hour for this caucus, so it makes sense to talk about sustaining the conversation beyond one session at Netroots Nation. We'll explore ideas for staying in touch between infrequent in person gatherings, and we'll end the session by creating a master blogroll which will be sent to all participants consisting of the names and web addresses of any blogs represented at the caucus.

Again, the caucus is scheduled for noon in the Exhibit Hall on Thursday. We purposefully scheduled it then because there isn't much going on at that time. We don't want to force folks to choose between attending that cool panel and our regional caucus. We'll hope to see you there!


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