The Delta Grassroots Caucus (DGC) is a broad coalition of grassroots leaders in the eight-state Delta region. DGC is also a founding partner of the Economic Equality Caucus,
which advocates for economic equality across the USA.

Delta Conference at Clinton Presidential Center Set for April 1-2, 2010

Posted on December 11, 2009 at 03:50 PM

The annual Delta Grassroots Caucus conference at the Clinton Presidential Center in Little Rock, Arkansas is set for the opening session on Thursday evening, April 1 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Clinton School of Public Service and the main session on Friday, April 2, 2010 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Great Hall of the Clinton Library. Please save the dates.

The main themes will be economic recovery from the recession, and health care legislation’s impact on improving inadequate health care in the eight-state Greater Delta region from southern Illinois to New Orleans and eastward to Selma, Alabama. We plan to invite Sen. Blanche Lincoln of Arkansas, chair of the Senate Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee and a key player in the health care debate, as well as several other major speakers. The 2009 Arkansas conference featured President Bill Clinton, Gov. Mike Beebe and Sen. Mark Pryor and other distinguished speakers.

We are just starting to put the agenda together now and will send out more information as it is completed. The group hotel and other specifics are being planned now. The conference will feature a series of panels, speakers and opportunity for question and answer on key issues regarding the economic development of the Delta.

We are continuing to weigh in on the health care debate and the economic recovery and encourage all our partners to remind their Members of Congress, governors and other powers that be about the urgency of acting to promote economic development in our distressed region.

If you have any information or recommendations regarding regional economic issues for the 2010 federal budget, please convey those to us at

We have been pleased to note the key roles played by so many Delta Members of Congress in the health care debate. Sen. Lincoln and Sen. Mark Pryor of Arkansas this week played a pivotal role in crafting an alternative version of health care reform. Sen. Lincoln said the compromise plan would create a national insurance exchange based on the federal employee plan. She said “Government creates an environment where private industry can operate, but it… creates the environment in a way that private industry is providing a product that best suits the needs of the consumer.”

While many partners of the Delta Caucus have indicated a preference for some version of the public option, we have a wide variety of points of view in our grassroots coalition and respect all of them. The compromise plan developed by 10 Senators, including Lincoln and Pryor, seems to be a reasonable compromise and was greeted favorably by President Obama, who said the plan contains both Democratic and Repoublican ideas and “plenty of compromises in between.” President Obama said he supported the efforts led by Lincoln and Pryor: “I support this effort, especially since it’s aimed at increasing choice and competition and lowering cost.”

Senators Mary Landrieu of Louisiana and Lincoln cast the two deciding votes to move the health care debate forward and avoid a filibuster, and most of our partners believed that was the correct decision.

Sen. Lincoln and Sen. Landrieu gave thoughtful presentations on health care at our fall conference in Washington, DC, as did Sen. Mark Pryor, Sen. Thad Cochran (MS), Rep. Travis Childers (MS), Rep. Charles Melancon (LA), Rep. Joseph Cao (LA), Rep. Marion Berry (AR), Rep. Mike Ross (AR), Rep. Jo Ann Emerson (MO), Rep. Artur Davis (AL), Rep. Jerry Costello (IL), and Rep. Rodney Alexander (LA).

REGISTRATION–You register for the April 1-2, 2010 conference by mailing in the $85 registration fee. Please make out the check to “Delta Grassroots Caucus,” with a note, “For April, 2010 conference,” and mail to:

Delta Grassroots Caucus (Attention: Lee Powell) 5030 Purslane Place Waldorf, MD 20601

For those who want to register as a group from your area or organization, we offer a reduced fee of $60 each if you register in a group of 10 or more.

Thanks very much. Lee Powell, MDGC (202) 360-6347