EPISODE #48 – The Badass Grandmas for Democracy

Episode 48 . 35:37

Ellen Chaffee, Dina Butcher & Kathy Tweeten

The Badass Grandmas for Democracy

Episode Description:

 These self-named Badass Grandmas for Democracy (as they say, Grandchildren not required!) took on the establishment in North Dakota to fight corruption – and won! Their mission: To engage you in restoring trustworthy govt. for generations to come. They mobilized citizens, they marshaled their expertise and moxie, and with humor, determination, principles, and a deep desire for decency to be restored, they started a movement! Ellen, Dina & Kathy are just…fabulous! I spoke to them before the pandemic, and I know they’ll bolster our hope that there’s much more to come once we move past these profoundly challenging times! 

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BadAss Grandmas for Democracy (grandchildren not required!) is a movement, not an organization. We are fiercely committed to advancing high-functioning democracy in government for our grandchildren.

Like all grandmothers, we love unconditionally. We have no personal agenda. We share our wisdom and encourage initiative. We are fearless when nurturing and protecting our loves. We are authentic, fun, and persistent.

We invest our time, not spend it – there’s only so much of it left. We are the heart of democracy. And we are invincible.

How We Started BadAss Grandmas Dina, Ellen, and Kathy led a non-partisan ad hoc group of retired government executives and engaged citizens who wrote, petitioned, campaigned for, and won a citizen-initiated constitutional amendment, with strong support from volunteers, voters, and the national pro-democracy movement. North Dakota’s Article XIV includes deep disclosure requirements for independent campaign spending, prohibits six conflict-of-interest activities, and establishes a strong state ethics commission.

During the campaign stage, the BadAss Grandmas toured the state, shopping for caramel rolls, locally made sausage, and support for Measure 1, the ethics initiative that became Article XIV. Their opponents raised hundreds of thousands of dollars from corporations, cooperatives, and trade associations, attacked the proponents’ integrity and intelligence, and mailed giant 4-color cards with dire prophecies. The Catholic Conference blanketed the parishes with anti-initiative messages, and the ACLU joined the opposition.

The BadAss Grandmas cohort – and the citizens! – won the election, but the opposition is far from conceding. Grandma’s work is never done.

The 2019 Unrig the System Summit in February presented us with the Courage Award. The great potential and widespread appeal of BadAss Grandmas became obvious there. So we declared a movement to engage all self-identified BadAss Grandmas in returning this country to the voters and rebuilding engaged citizenship in America.

Where We’re Going  If you invite us, we will come! We are preparing a campaign to build the movement. If you want to be involved at this early stage, email us a [email protected]. Spread the word about this page, encourage people to comment, and send us news about your work to engage BadAss Grandmas in your world! More to come. https://badassgrandmas.org/


Join me at the Grandmothers on the Move FaceBook Page: https://www.facebook.com/grandmothersonthemove/

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