|By Admin1 (admin) on Friday, November 16, 2001 - 12:07 am: Edit Post|
Following is an email sent out by John Coyne of the Committee for the Future of the Peace Corps discussing the results of the Confirmation Hearings and next steps for those who oppose the nomination of Gaddi Vasquez:
I sent out the LA Times story a few minutes ago by email. Yesterday, Wednesday, there was also a story in the LA Times about our efforts, and a nice mention by Judy Mann in her Washington Post column. You'd be able to find all of these stories on www.PeaceCorpsOnline.org.
The Hearing lasted nearly two hours, with a break for Senators to vote. I will give a detail of the mood, etc. of the hearing in another memo, maybe tomorrow, or over the weekend. This memo is to tell everyone where we are at this moment.
The Committee for the Future of the Peace Corps Ad was extremely successful. It got EVERYONE's attention. Even Senator Boxer mentioned it in her remarks. However it is still not paid for. We owe about $2,400. Please send a donation to Barbara, or another donation to Barbara. Her address again is:
Barbara Ferris P.0. Box 32243 Washington, D.C. 20007
If you can't do anything else, send money.
We know that the Senators have read our information. We will post all of the testimonies on www.PeaceCorpsOnline.org and on http://peacecorpswriters.org within the next few days.
We have been told that they (and their staffs) were impressed that we were able to mobilize and suggested that this momentum should continue as an oversight mechanism for the Peace Corps since NPCA is nowhere to be found on this issue. But that is another issue that I'm not concerned about for the moment.
We asked the Senate Staffs what we should do now and they said to keep the phone calls and emails coming- - in light of what has happened in the hearings:- We make our case - which is stronger. Fax or email another letter to the Senators for the next 2 weeks, particularly to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
Since yesterday's hearing we have learned of a "one major misstatement" by Gaddi Vasquez which we are tracking down. If true, and we believe it is, we will forward that information to Senator Dodd.
Those of you who were at the Hearing (and thank you for coming) also remember the exchange between Senator Dodd and Gaddi Vasquez regarding his opposing HIV training to county employees at the height of the epidemic. You may recall how the Senator said, "I'm trying to help you here. Would you rethink that vote?" Well, its appears Mr. Vasquez won't rethink the vote. His view on AIDs education is one area that we want to research.
The Nomination process, as far as we know, goes something like this: the Committee schedules a business meeting to discuss the Hearing and determines when it will come up for a vote. Senator Sarbanes foreign affairs staff person indicated that this would happen immediately after Thanksgiving. She also suggested that we try to look for the hearing report on www.thomas.gov but said that the website is sporadic, and it might not get put up immediately.
Once the initial report is written in draft, then it is reviewed by the staffers, then it is put into final and sent to the printers and it may be a month before the public has access to it. I will try and write a detail report on what took place regarding key moments in the hearing before theirs is published.
From statements made by Senators Sarbanes, Dodd, and Boxer it was clear that "our message" was heard. It was also clear that the White House was concerned about our opposition as they frontloaded the Hearing with Senator Boxer, Congressmen Christopher Cox and Congressman Loretta Sanchez to come and introduce Gaddi Vasquez. Also many of the senior staff who served under Ruppe and Coverdell were on hand to support Gaddi Vasquez.
Almost everyone found Jody Olsen's comments well written and thoughtful, and her answers on target. Vasquez, on the other hand, attempted to reply to questions without knowledge or understanding. One great moment was when he referred to Peace Corps countries as "the marketplace".
More (much more) later. John
P.S. Keep those emails and checks coming.