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Rep. Beyer Rallies Dems With Call to Revive a New Activism

U.S. REP. DON BEYER spoke to a standing room only crowd about the aftermath of last month's presidential election in Shirlington Saturday morning. (Photo: News-Press)
U.S. REP. DON BEYER spoke to a standing room only crowd about the aftermath of last month’s presidential election in Shirlington Saturday morning. (Photo: News-Press)

U.S. Rep. Donald S. Beyer Jr., who represents the 8th District of Virginia that includes the City of Falls Church, told a standing room only audience of Democratic activists in Shirlington last weekend that they should not succumb to grief over their loss in the presidential election last month.

“There’s an old Chinese proverb that says if you get knocked down six times, you get up seven,” he said. “Unlike how the Republicans responded to President Obama’s victory, resolved to provide him a ‘failed presidency,’ we don’t take that approach. But wherever we find a President Trump to be wrong, and that may be most of the time, we need to fight as much as possible. Everyone must do what they can, including write, talk, tweet, send letters to the editor. Let your life be your argument. We must make sure he is a one-term president.”

Beyer praised what he saw as “so much energy” in the room. He said that the response he’s gotten since the election from everyone has been, “What can I do?”

Trump, he said, “needs to be accountable to every American,” adding that Democrats “must be open to Republicans now,” adding, “There are a lot of them who feel they no longer have a home. We should bring as many with us as possible.”

Another focus needs to be on the young, he said. “If the votes were only of Millennials and other young voters, it would have been a total blow out.”
He noted that while rural America voted 3-1 for Trump, “We really are the party for those without economic power.”

In addition to a Million Woman March being organized for D.C. on Jan. 21, he cited an event being organized for Wakefield High School in Arlington on the night of Martin Luther King Day, and also as important the elections next year, including for governor of Virginia.

He said GOP lawmakers will be “playing with fire” if they move to repeal Obama Care, with 22 million Americans now covered by it and as a result the lowest percentage of unpaid medical bills in history in the past year. “In history, it has always been difficult to give people freedom and then try to take it away from them.”

The event was a monthly Saturday morning gathering at the Bus Boys and Poets in Shirlington.

Next week, Rep. Beyer will appear at a roundtable hosted by the Northern Virginia Chamber of Commerce on Monday afternoon along with fellow regional Congressmen Gerry Connolly and Barbara Comstock.

Yesterday Beyer introduced the Wildlife Corridors Conservation Act of 2016 to begin reversing the tide of habitat loss and fragmentation for U.S. fish, wildlife, and plant species.

Wildlife corridors are stretches of habitat that allow species to move from one area of habitat to another for such purposes as accessing resources, establishing new territories, shifting ranges, promoting gene flow, and adapting to the impacts of a changing climate. Corridors have been successfully implemented around the world and throughout the U.S., yet current law provides limited requirements for land and water managers to address species’ connectivity needs.

“With roughly one in five animal and plant species in the U.S. at risk of extinction due to habitat loss and fragmentation, one of the simplest yet most effective things we can do is to provide them ample opportunity to move across lands and waters,” said Beyer in a statement that accompanied the announcement.

The Wildlife Corridors Conservation Act establishes a National Wildlife Corridors System to ensure that species are able to move between habitats less encumbered by obstacles.

The bill directs key Federal land and water management agencies to work with each other, as well as with States, tribes, local governments, and private landowners, to develop and manage national wildlife corridors in accordance with existing laws and the habitat connectivity needs of native species.