- 1 Background
- 2 Committees
- 3 Communist support for Una Clarke
- 4 Gaspard support
- 5 Forum with Randall Robinson
- 6 WWP Rosa Parks rally
- 7 Peace Pledge Coalition
- 8 Trip to Cuba
- 9 Black Caucus
- 10 Congressional Progressive Caucus
- 11 Awards
- 12 EMILY's List
- 13 Calling on Israeli Govt. to lift Gaza Travel Ban
- 14 Supported Lifting the Gaza Blockade
- 15 Campaign to Make Immigration Reform a Top Issue in 2010
- 16 Haiti statement
- 17 Two Haiti forums
- 18 Haiti Advocacy Working Group
- 19 International Year for People of African Descent
- 20 High IPS rating
- 21 Lifting travel ban on Cuba
- 22 Cuban 5
- 23 MUNA Civic Engagement Banquet 2013
- 24 PDA contact
- 25 Congressional Letter for Neutrality, 2014 Salvadoran Elections
- 26 ARA PAF endorsement, 2014
- 27 Venezuelan connection
- 28 No cuts rally
- 29 Nelson Mandela's funeral
- 30 Working Families Party
- 31 DREAMers press conference
- 32 "Hands up"
- 33 "Progressive Agenda"
- 34 Radical Intern
- 35 Left pressure on Iran nuclear deal
- 36 Intelligence scandal
- 37 Rally for Ravi
- 38 Staff
- 39 External links
- 40 References
United States Representative Yvette D. Clarke is a Brooklyn native whose "roots are firmly planted in her Jamaican heritage". A product of the New York City Public School System, Rep. Clarke received a scholarship to Oberlin College and was a recipient of the prestigious APPAH/Sloan Fellowship in Public Policy and Policy Analysis.
Rep. Clarke was first elected to Congress in November 2006 and represents the 11th Congressional District which includes the communities of Brownsville, Crown Heights, East Flatbush, Flatbush, Windsor Terrace, Borough Park, Sunset Park, Carroll Gardens, Kensington, Park Slope, Prospect Heights, Prospect-Lefferts Gardens and Prospect Park.
Prior to being elected to the U.S. House of Representatives, Rep. Clarke served on the New York City Council representing the 40th District in Brooklyn. She succeeded her pioneering mother, former City Council Member Una S. T. Clarke, making them the first mother-daughter succession in the history of the Council.
In the 111th Congress, Rep. Clarke sat on several committees including the House Education and Labor Committee, the House Homeland Security Committee and the House Small Business Committee. 
Communist support for Una Clarke
According to the New York Communist Party USA's Mobilizer of September 21 1991, page 5, the Party's State Committee was to offer Communist Party support for three Majority Coalition New York City council candidates Peggy Shepard in Manhattan, Mary Alice France in Queens, and Una Clarke in Brooklyn.
In 2006 Patrick Gaspard worked to help Yvette Clarke's election to Congresss.
According Josh Isay, a consultant to Mr. Bloomberg who worked with Gaspard on that race
- “Without Patrick Gaspard, Yvette Clarke would not be in Congress.”
Forum with Randall Robinson
Human rights activist and attorney Randall Robinson discussed "The Role of Race in U.S. and Foreign Policy," Feb. 2005, at a Black History Month program presented by the Metropolitan Black Bar, at the offices of Verizon, 1095 Sixth Ave. (near W. 42nd St.) in Manhattan.
Robinson, former head of the black American-Caribbean-African lobby TransAfrica Forum, is the author of several books, including "Defending the Spirit: A Black Life in America," "Quitting America: The Departure of a Black Man from His Native Land" and "TransAfrica Forum: The Case for Black Reparations.
Ron Daniels of the Center for Constitutional Rights was keynote speaker. Other scheduled speakers included Jamaica diplomat Basil Bryan, City Council members Yvette Clarke and David Yassky, Ambassador Ahmed Abdi Hashi of Somalia, Ambassador Augustine Mahiga of Tanzania and Imam Abdur Rahman Farrakhan of Ocean Hill-Brownsville. 
WWP Rosa Parks rally
On Oct. 27, 2005 New York City Council member Charles Barron and the Troops Out Now Coalition sponsored a news conference on the steps of City Hall in Manhattan. Scores of community activists joined a dozen members of the City Council to announce the introduction of a resolution to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Rosa Parks’ 1955 arrest with a day of absence against war, poverty and racism on Dec. 1.
The news conference took place three days after Rosa Parks’ death at the age of 92.
Barron began the press conference by saying, “When Rosa Parks sat down, that is when Black people stood up.” Barron spoke of the significance of the resolution, which urges all businesses and schools to close down on Dec. 1 to allow workers and students to attend events in honor of Rosa Parks.
Barron also spoke about the “immoral and illegal” Iraq war, which has caused the deaths of more than 100,000 Iraqis and 2,000 U.S. soldiers, along with $300 billion wasted on this criminal war. “If you can impeach Clinton for Monica [Lewin sky], then you can impeach Bush,” Barron said.
Workers World Party leader Larry Holmes from the Troops Out Now Coalition spoke about a day-long teach-in scheduled during a march and rally on Wall Street on Dec. 1. “We need to renew the civil rights movement.... We have to say no to the racism, injustice and poverty that creates a situation like New Orleans.... We won’t allow social justice, economic justice and the struggle against war to go to the back of the bus,” he said.
WWP affiliate Brenda Stokely, a co-convener of New York City Labor Against the War, said that “honoring Rosa Parks is honoring a legacy of struggle.” Stokely described the struggle of Katrina survivors to return home to New Orleans and other Gulf Coast areas after the hurricane and explained how activists in a number of cities, including New York, are organizing solidarity committees to support this right.
WWP member LeiLani Dowell and Mia Cruz, organizers for the WWP youth wing Fight Imperialism-Stand Together, encouraged student walkouts on Dec. 1 and supported the on-going campaign against military recruiters in the high schools and colleges.
Other speakers at the press conference included three Black women on the City Council: Letitia James, Helen Foster and Yvette Clarke; State Sen. Jose Rivera; Nellie Bailey of the Harlem Tenants Council; Jasmine of Campus Anti-War Network; Ron Daniels of Center for Constitutional Rights; Jericho Movement leaders Herman Ferguson and Iyaluua Ferguson; Black Waxx recording artist Nana Soul; Gloria Jackson, a daycare worker and mother of a GI who was in Iraq; Zul of the Green Party’s National Peace Action Committee, and others.
Peace Pledge Coalition
In 2007 90 Members of Congress, pledged in an open letter delivered to President Bush: "We will only support appropriating funds for U.S. military operations in Iraq during Fiscal Year 2008 and beyond for the protection and safe redeployment of all our troops out of Iraq before you leave office." The letter was initiated by the Peace Pledge Coalition. The Coalition was led by Tim Carpenter, Progressive Democrats of America, Bob Fertik, Democrats.com Medea Benjamin, CodePink, Bill Fletcher, co-founder of Center for Labor Renewal David Swanson, AfterDowningStreet.org, Democrats.com, Progressive Democrats of America, Kevin Zeese, Voters for Peace, Democracy Rising, Brad Friedman, co-founder of Velvet Revolution, Bill Moyer, Backbone Campaign.
Trip to Cuba
Rep. Clarke traveled to Cuba for 4 days in October 2007. The trip was courtesy of a $1,620.00 grant from the Institute for Policy Studies connected Center for Democracy in the Americas... "To gain extensive knowledge of the impact of U.S. policy toward Cuba and of the Cuban health care system".
Rep. Clarke also plans on using this voice to make the needs of her community a priority within the 112th Congress as the newly appointed Secretary for the Congressional Black Caucus and the Senior Whip for the Democratic Caucus. The Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, Inc., (CBCF) also recently welcomed Rep. Yvette D. Clarke of New York to its Board of Directors. 
Congressional Progressive Caucus
Representative Clarke received an “A” rating from the Drum Major Institute, TheMiddleClass.org, and 100% ratings by Peace Action, The Brady Campaign and the American Civil Liberties Union. She was also named After-School Hero by The After-School Corporation for her work on the House Education and Labor Committee. In May 2009, Rep. Clarke was also presented with an honorary Doctorate Law Degree from St. Francis College. 
Clarke has been supported by EMILY's List during her campaigning.
Calling on Israeli Govt. to lift Gaza Travel Ban
On Dec. 22, 2009, thirty-three U.S. Representatives wrote to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, calling on her to request that the Israeli Government end the ban on student travel from Gaza to the West Bank. Yvette Clarke was one of the signatories of the letter. The entire letter together with a complete list of signatories can be read by clicking here.
Supported Lifting the Gaza Blockade
On Jan. 27, 2010, U.S. Representatives Keith Ellison and Jim McDermott led 52 other members of Congress in signing a letter addressed to President Barack Obama, calling for him to use diplomatic pressure to resolve the blockade affecting Gaza. Yvette Clarke was one of the signatories of the letter.  The entire letter together with a complete list of signatories can be read by clicking here.
Campaign to Make Immigration Reform a Top Issue in 2010
On October 13 2009 , immigration activists from around the country gathered to join in a vigil and rally in front of the U.S. Capitol in Washington, DC., where Congressman Luis V. Gutierrez and other elected officials launched a new push for comprehensive immigration reform, building to the opening months of 2010. their banners read “Reform Immigration FOR Families” and “Family Unity Cannot Wait.”
More than 750 people traveled to Washington on buses from up and down the Eastern seaboard and as far away as Texas, Florida, Ohio, Minnesota, and Michigan. They spent Tuesday morning meeting with Congressional offices before being joined by thousands of people from the D.C., Maryland, and Virginia area, who gathered on the grounds of the U.S. Capitol to listen to testimonies from families, veterans, and children who face family disintegration because of immigration laws and deportation.
Religious leaders from a diverse array of faith traditions around the country, some organized through Familias Unidas, added their voices.
- At the event Congressman Gutierrez outlined a set of principles for progressive immigration reform that needs to include a rational and humane approach to legalize the undocumented population, to protect workers’ rights, to allocate sufficient visas, to establish a smarter and more humane border enforcement policy, to promote integration of immigrant communities, to include the DREAM Act and AgJOBS bills, to protect rights guaranteed by the Constitution, and to keep families together.
The lawmakers who joined Rep. Gutierrez on stage, and addressed the gathering included Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ), Congressional Hispanic Caucus Chairwoman Rep. Nydia Velazquez (D-NY), Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus Chairman Rep. Michael Honda (D-CA), Congressional Progressive Caucus Chairs Raúl M. Grijalva (D-AZ) and Lynn Woolsey (D-CA), Congressional Black Caucus Member, Yvette Clarke (D-NY), Democratic Caucus Vice Chair Xavier Becerra (D-CA), Jared Polis (D-CO), Jan Schakowsky (D-IL), Michael Quigley (D-IL), and Delegate Gregorio Sablan (Northern Mariana Islands).
On Wednesday, May 25, 2011, Rep. Donald Payne (NJ), Rep. Yvette Clarke (NY), Rep. Frederica Wilson (FL), and Rep. Maxine Waters (CA) made a joint statement in response to the eviction and destruction of camps on public property in the Delmas district of Port-au-Prince:
- “On Monday, May 23, 2011, our offices were alarmed at the startling news that three camps of internally displaced persons in the Delmas neighborhood of Port-au-Prince were effectively destroyed. This included the park at the intersection of Delmas Road and Airport Road which was destroyed at the hands of the Haitian police, under direction of Mayor Wilson Jeudy. This camp is home to several hundred people and is a microcosm of the over 800,000 officially-recognized displaced persons in Haiti. It is even more disturbing that this incident occurred during the day while many Haitian women and men were out in search of employment. Those who stayed behind witnessed the destruction of their belongings while some were violently beaten with batons by police.
Two Haiti forums
“Building Back Haiti More Justly: Enforcing the Rights of Haiti’s Poor Majority”
Who/What: Policy forum covering IDPs in Haiti, unlawful and violent evictions in tent camps, ongoing deportations, and a rights-based approach to rebuilding
Participants: Nicole Phillips, Staff Attorney with Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti (IJDH) and Assistant Director for Haiti Programs, University of San Francisco School of Law; Mario Joseph, Managing Attorney, Bureau des Avocats Internationaux; Etant Dupain, Director of Bri Kouri Nouvèl Gaye, a Haitian grassroots organization that is a partner of TransAfrica Forum’s Let Haiti Live Project; Laura Raymond, International Human Rights Associate of the Center for Constitutional Rights; Gueter Aurelien, Law Student, University of Miami Law Clinics; and Mary Beth Gallagher, Advocacy Officer of RFK Center for Justice and Human Rights.
“The Dominican Republic’s Attempts to Revoke the Citizen of Dominicans of Haitian Ancestry”
Participants: Noemi Mendez, a leading Dominican human rights lawyer representing some of the effected individuals; Ana Maria Belique Delba, one of the few Dominicans of Haitian ethnicity who has won an appeal of the confiscation of her identity documents; and Sonia Pierre, a Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights Laureate and a Dominican of Haitian-descent.
Haiti Advocacy Working Group
In 2012, the Haiti Advocacy Working Group, Haitian social movements and Haitian Diaspora groups were working with the U.S. Congressional allies, including members of the Congressional Black Caucus, to raise attention to the current status of Haiti’s reconstruction process at the 2 year commemoration marker.
From January 23-25, 2012, Haitians, HaitianAmericans and other Haitian development experts brought their voices to Capitol Hill.
HAWG allies advocated for a just reconstruction and development process in Haiti, one that prioritizes the needs of women, internally displaced persons, smallholder farmers, the urban poor, immigrants and other vulnerable Haitians, includes the full participation ofHaitian grassroots groups and the Diaspora and holds the US government accountable for delivery of its commitments.
- Tuesday, January 24 9am-10:30am: Rep.’s Barbara Lee, Yvette Clarke & Donald Payne sponsoring panel on health & cholera
- Dr. Louise Ivers, Senior Health and Policy Advisor, Partners In Health
- Ralph Ternier, Director, Community Health, Zanmi Lasante/Partners In Health
- Jordon Tappero, Director, Health Systems, Centers for Disease Control & Prevention
- Dr. Mirta Roses, Director, Pan American Health Organization
- Mark Weisbrot, Director, Center for Economic Policy Research
- Noon-2pm: Rep. Yvette Clarke sponsoring and TransAfrica Forum hosting a viewing of a documentary, ‘Where did the money go?’, and follow-up briefing, on aid accountability, transparency and procurement.
- Mark Schuller, CUNY
- Manolia Charlotin, Boston Haitian Reporter
- Ben Smilowitz, Disaster Accountability Project
- Michele Mitchell, News at 11
- Mark Weisbrot, Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR)
- Nicole Lee, TransAfrica Forum
- 2-4pm: Rep.’s Lee, Wilson, Payne and Clarke co-sponsoring panel on Land and Housing.
International Year for People of African Descent
September 20, 2011, TransAfrica Forum hosted a series of conversations in celebration of the UN International Year for People of African Descent, Capitol Building Room SVC 212-10 Washington, DC.
- The State of the Black Diaspora
- Positioning the Diaspora in a Global World
- Foreign Policy and the 2012 Elections
High IPS rating
Lifting travel ban on Cuba
- Due to your action/emails/phone calls we have 59 signatures from House representatives urging President Obama to support travel to Cuba by granting general licenses for ALL current categories of travel.
- By eliminating the laborious license application process, especially for people-to-people groups, that is managed by the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), the majority of the bureaucratic red tape that holds up licensable travel to Cuba would disappear and actually facilitate what the President wanted to see in 2011, liberalized travel regulations.
Signatories included Rep. Yvette Clarke.
During the June 2012 'Five Days for the Five' in Washington DC , Latin American parliamentarians advocating for the imprisoned spies known as the Cuban Five, met with two members of the Congressional Black Caucus, Bobby Rush and Yvette Clarke.
The delegation of Latin Americans who made the trip to Washington to encourage their U.S. counterparts to become involved in finding a solution to the unjust imprisonment of the Five included congressional representatives Glauber Braga Socialist Party of Brazil; Hugo Gutierrez, Communist Party of Chile; Armando Aguilar , Ecuador; Damián Alegría, of the communist leaning Frente Farabundo Martí El Salvador; Alba Palacios, Sandinista, Nicaragua; and Chilean Senator Alejandro Navarro, Broad Social Movement, former leader of the Socialist Party of Chile. Italian Gianni Vattimo, a member of the European Union Parliament, for the Party of Italian Communists also participated.
Rush, who traveled to Cuba in 2009 and pledged to visit the Five upon his return, reiterated his commitment to do so, with other members of the Congressional Black Caucus, to support the prisoners and draw attention to the case. Representative Clarke, who recalled that her parents were Jamaican immigrants and whose district includes many residents with Caribbean roots, expressed her interest in improving relations between Cuba and the United States, acknowledging that resolving the case of the Five is important to that process. She commented that an ad hoc working group of Congress members interested in supporting better relations should be reactivated and become involved in discussion of the case.
Describing the experience, Salvadoran Frente Farabundo Martí legislator Damian Alegría said, “It was important to share the case of the Five with U.S. Representatives and Senators, to make them aware of the judicial irregularities that must be corrected, but also to hear that some of them do know about the case and share our opinion that it reflects a backward point of view, which must be overcome in the process of normalization of economic, political and diplomatic relations with Cuba.”
MUNA Civic Engagement Banquet 2013
The importance of the community involvement was mentioned by American Congressmen, State Senators and City Councils at the Civic Engagement Banquet Program arranged by MUNA ( Muslim Ummah of North America) held on Friday night, October 27th The purpose of this event was to strengthen the relationship between Muslim community and the American Politicians by increasing the representatives among the policy level of this country.
This event was led by the community leader Dr. Sayeed Chowdhury which was a successful event with many speakers deliberate their valuable speech. The Speakers were Congressmen Yvette Clarke and Hakeem Jeffries, New York State Senator Jose Peralta, James Senders, Jr., Nominated President for Queens Borough Melinda Kurtz, Brooklyn Borough Attorney Charles Heinz and Councilman Robert Jackson, CAIR NY president Ryan Mahni, Nominated Comptroller of NY City Hisham Al Melighy , Letitia James.
The overall situation of American Muslim Community was presented by Naji Al Montasser, President of New York Muslim Voter and Information Club, Abu Ahmed Nuruzzaman, President of MUNA, Debbie Al Montasser, leader of Muslim Consultative Net World, Mohammed Rijvi from Council of People Organization, Imam Hammaued Al Selwi from Muslim American Society, Naeem Beg, President of Islamic Circle of North America, Imam Shamsi Ali, Imam Abu Taleb, from Jamaica Muslim Center, student Samihah Islam, Community Activist Umayer Khan, M. Bari Khan, Jahangir Kabir, CPA Ainul Hoq, Delwar Hossain.
In 2013 Progressive Democrats of America assigned activists to deliver their material to almost every US Congressman and several Senators. Janelle Barabash was assigned as contact for Rep. Clarke. In June it was Mohammed Kader.
Congressional Letter for Neutrality, 2014 Salvadoran Elections
On Monday December 16, 2014 Reps. Juan Vargas (D-CA), Mike Honda (D-CA) and Mark Pocan (D-WI) sent a letter to Sec. of State John Kerry – signed by 51 Members of Congress – calling for a public statement of neutrality by the State Department before the first round of El Salvador’s presidential elections on February 2, 2014.
The letter, , highlighted several “important steps” that the current government has taken to “strengthen its democratic system and expand the right to vote to all citizens,” including those living outside of the country, who will be voting by absentee ballot for the first time in February. Since the election of Mauricio Funes, the first President from the Marxist Farabundo Martí National Liberation Front (FMLN) party, the government has increased the number of polling places four-fold to increase accessibility, especially in rural areas.
“We’re glad to see so many Members of Congress expressing respect for the right of the Salvadoran people to determine their own future. That’s an attitude that’s sorely lacking in much of the US’ policy in Central America, especially with regard to economic policy,” said Alexis Stoumbelis, Executive Director for the pro-communist Committee in Solidarity with the People of El Salvador (CISPES), in Washington, DC, which has observed every post-war election in El Salvador, starting in 1994.
Signatories included Rep. Yvette Clarke..
ARA PAF endorsement, 2014
According to data the Venezuelan delegation to Washington filed with the Foreign Agents Registration of the US, Venezuelan officials had 82 contacts with personalities in the United States. The list includes meetings with lawmakers, NGOs, and representatives of US actor Danny Glover's office.
The website of the US Government's Foreign Agents Registration published a report by Olivia Goumbri, who identifies herself as the Venezuelan Embassy's Social Outreach Counselor. The document elaborates on the Venezuelan officials' contacts with US political, cultural, and academic leaders.
Pursuant to the US law, foreign government agents in the United States have to report such activities to the NSD.
The document includes a questionnaire in which Goumbri was asked whether her foreign principal (the Embassy of Venezuela) had engaged in any political activity in the US. Goumbri's response was Yes.
Several congressional representatives, a pro-Cuban organization, religious leaders, social organizations, and actor Danny Glover's office are among the 82 registered contacts between Venezuelan diplomats and US-based individuals or organizations. Such activities took place from November 2012 to April 30, 2013.
Barbara Lee, Sheila Jackson-Lee, Yvette Clarke, Gregory Meeks, Karen Bass and Jose Serrano - an admirer of late President Hugo Chávez- are some of the members of the House of Representatives who were contacted by the Venezuelan diplomatic mission through their parliamentary offices .
No cuts rally
Scores of seniors came to the U.S. Capitol October 2013, joined hands with Members of Congress, and formed a human chain in opposition to the Chained CPI formula and all benefit cuts to Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid. The Congressional Progressive Caucus hosted the demonstration, as Alliance for Retired Americans members joined with Social Security Works and other allies. The event was emceed by Congressional Progressive Caucus Co-Chair Keith Ellison (D-MN). Other Members of Congress at the event included Reps. Cheri Bustos (IL); David Cicilline (RI); Yvette Clarke (NY); John Conyers (MI); Elijah Cummings (MD); Rosa DeLauro (CT); Alan Grayson (FL); Mike Honda (CA); Steven Horsford (NV); Barbara Lee (CA); Sheila Jackson Lee (TX); Alan Lowenthal (CA); Dan Maffei (NY); Carolyn Maloney (NY); Jerrold Nadler (NY); Mark Pocan (WI); Jan Schakowsky (IL); Mark Takano (CA); and Paul Tonko (NY).
Nelson Mandela's funeral
In December 2013, the following Democratic legislators traveled to South Africa to attended Nelson Mandela's funeral Democrats Dels. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D.C.) and Donna Christensen (V.I.); and Democratic Reps. Marcia Fudge, John Conyers (Mich.), Charles Rangel (N.Y.), John Lewis, Jim McDermott (Wash.), Maxine Waters (Calif.), Bobby Scott (Va.), Mel Watt (N.C.), Sheila Jackson-Lee (Tex.), Elijah Cummings (Md.), Gregory Meeks (N.Y.), Barbara Lee (Calif.), G.K. Butterfield (N.C.), Gene Green (Tex.), Gwen Moore (Wis.), Yvette Clarke (N.Y.), Karen Bass (Calif.), Joyce Beatty (Ohio) and Terri Sewell (Ala.).
Working Families Party
DREAMers press conference
August 15, 2014, St. Mary’s Church in Manhattan, the New York Immigration Coalition held a press conference and group workshop to begin the application process for deferred action for several hundred DREAMers.
Four Democrats took to the House floor December 23, 2014, to display the “hands up, don’t shoot” gesture that has come to be symbolic of the Ferguson protests.
Jeffries, called the gesture and chant “a rallying cry of people all across America who are fed up with police violence.”
Signers of New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio's May 12, 2015 launched The Progressive Agenda to Combat Income Inequality included US Rep. Yvette Clarke.
Left pressure on Iran nuclear deal
In a rebuff to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, four key Brooklyn congresspeople, three of them African American and one Latina, representing large concentrations of Jewish voters, came out in support of the Iran deal. Early defense of President Obama's diplomacy by the Congressional Black Caucus and Congressional Progressive Caucus played a role., as well as the work of House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi's office. But energetic organizing by grassroots peace organizations in Brooklyn also played an important part.
A national day of action on August 26, initiated by MoveOn, focused on meetings with congresspeople who were still on the fence. The grassroots group Brooklyn For Peace played a particularly important role in mobilizing on short notice over 200 constituents to meet with undecided Democratic Reps. Hakeem Jeffries, Yvette Clarke, and Nydia Velasquez.
At coordinated pro-deal rallies outside the congressional offices, demonstrators carried "Defend Diplomacy" placards, chanting "Hey, Yvette, Support the Deal, That Is What The People Feel!" As if to illustrate this, BFP organizer Matt Weinstein later handed Rep. Clarke 1,629 petition signatures gathered from her constituents in the 9th Congressional District.
As pedestrians passed by on Linden Boulevard, street speeches for "Jobs, Not War" rang out, loud and clear. "Honk for peace" signs inspired many honks by passing motorists, both black and white.
These signatures had been gathered at street tables, town meetings, house meetings and farmers markets in central Brooklyn throughout the hot days of August. Petitioners wore MoveOn T-shirts that read "60 Days To Stop A War," and leaflets were distributed warning of the harmful consequences if there was a "no" vote.
A protest demonstration at Chuck Schumer's office on Aug. 10 featured several hundred members of MoveOn, Jewish Voice for Peace, Peace Action and Brooklyn for Peace, among others, in a show of unity. The media coverage this received was a much needed counterpoint to AIPAC'S big money blitz.
Before this, the prevailing wisdom among elected officials in Brooklyn, even among the most liberal, is that you challenge the power of the AIPAC Israel lobby only at the risk of your own re-election.
Three brothers who managed office information technology for members of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and other lawmakers were abruptly relieved of their duties, on suspicion that they accessed congressional computers without permission.
Three members of the intelligence panel and five members of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs were among the dozens of members who employed the suspects on a shared basis.
Also among those whose computer systems may have been compromised is Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, the Florida Democrat who was previously the target of a disastrous email hack when she served as chairman of the Democratic National Committee during the 2016 campaign.
The brothers are suspected of serious violations, including accessing members’ computer networks without their knowledge and stealing equipment from Congress.
Jamal handled IT for Rep. Joaquin Castro, a Texas Democrat who serves on both the intelligence and foreign affairs panels.
“As of 2/2, his employment with our office has been terminated,” Castro spokeswoman Erin Hatch told TheDCNF Friday.
Imran worked for Reps. Andre Carson, an Indiana Democrat, and Jackie Speier, a California Democrat. Both are members of the intelligence committee. Imran Awan, also worked for the House office of Wasserman Schultz.
Then-Rep. Tammy Duckworth, an Illinois Democrat, employed Abid Awan for IT work in 2016. She was a member of House committees dealing with the armed services, oversight, and Benghazi. Duckworth was elected to the Senate in November, 2016. Abid Awan has a prior criminal record and a bankruptcy.
The three men are “shared employees,” meaning they are hired by multiple offices, which split their salaries and use them as needed for IT services. It is up to each member to fire them.
A criminal investigation into five unnamed people began late last year related to serious and potentially illegal violations of House IT policies. Chiefs of staff for the members were briefed Thursday by the Sergeant-at-Arms.
Capitol Police spokeswoman Eva Malecki said the investigation was still ongoing, and arrests have not been made but staff were “asked to update their security settings.”
The Sergeant-at-Arms told staff that the subjects were four men who were brothers and one woman. It did not name them. It quoted one of the affected members as saying “they said it was some sort of procurement scam, but now I’m concerned that they may have stolen data from us, emails, who knows.”
The three brothers have all shared a house in Lorton, Virginia, that is owned by Hina Alvi. Alvi is a female House IT employee who works for many of the same members as the three brothers, as well as the House Democratic Caucus. Alvi has worked for reps Gregory Meeks, Yvette Clarke, Dave Loebsack, and Emanuel Cleaver.
Signs of trouble have long been visible in public records. The Congressional Credit Union repossessed Abid’s car in 2009, and he declared bankruptcy in 2012, facing multiple lawsuits.
Alvi, who did not respond to TheDCNF’s request for comment, has taken multiple second mortgages.
Jack Langer, spokesman for the intelligence committee, said the committee office has its own IT staff and security measures and classified information from the panel is not allowed to be sent to members’ personal offices.
Rally for Ravi
The New Sanctuary Movement announced Jan. 29 2018, that “After weeks of unrelenting community mobilization, Judge Katherine Forrest ruled this morning that ICE denied Ravi Ragbir due process by detaining him in his routine check in on Jan. 11. That means Ravi will get to fight his ongoing case from home rather than from behind bars in detention. The fight is not over. This ruling only affects Ravi’s detention, not his pending deportation. …Today’s decision is proof that organizing and the power of community will ultimately set us free. That’s why we must keep up the fight for the thousands of people facing the same racist, unjust, and escalating treatment from ICE every day.”
On the morning of Jan. 27, nearly 100 people protested outside the Immigration and Customs Enforcement office at 26 Federal Plaza in New York City to support Ravi Ragbir, an immigrant rights leader from Trinidad who is head of the New Sanctuary Coalition of New York, and Jean Montrevil from Haiti. Both were arrested by ICE agents earlier in January. U.S. Reps. Nydia Velazquez and Yvette Clarke from Brooklyn spoke at the rally in support of the two prisoners. Rep. Joseph Crowley was also there.
The following have worked as staff members for Yvette Clarke:
- Meena Agarwal
- Jeremy Alexander
- Hina Alvi
- Veronica Aveis
- Imran Awan
- David Barnes
- Kristia Beaubrun
- Elizabeth Bedell
- Mary Bishop
- Deanna Bitetti
- Ian Campbell
- Fabrice Coles
- Julia Collis
- Rebecca Cornell
- O'Nica Cox
- Mary Cronin
- Dale Degale
- Bridgette DeHart
- Erin Dominquez
- Matthew Fleischer
- J. William Goold
- Kenya Handy
- Daniel Arthur Hattis
- Jehmal Hudson
- Judith Kargbo
- Nausheen Khalid
- Mark Lee
- Joe Leonard, Jr.
- Rachel Lipsey
- Tara Martin
- Andrea Martin
- Christopher McLeod
- Terrill North
- John Jioni Palmer
- Nancy Ramos-Muniz
- Patrick Rheaume
- Michael Rohn
- Angela Teresa Rye
- Algene Sajery
- Eli Slavin
- Connie Smith
- Nigel Stephens
- Alan Sundahl
- Ronnie Sykes
- Anita Taylor
- Ron Thomas
- Curtis Thomas
- Latrice Walker
- Michelle T. Wilkes
- Jeanne Patrice Willoughby
- Jessica Young
- official Congressional biography, accessed August 16, 2011,
- official Congressional biography, accessed August 16, 2011,
- [http://www.nydailynews.com/archives/boroughs/activist-speaks-race-article-1.649268 ACTIVIST SPEAKS ON RACE BY JARED MCCALLISTER NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Sunday, February 6, 2005]
- WW Dec. 1 day of absence gets broad support By Monica Moorehead New York Published Nov 5, 2005
- War Is A Crime .org, Peace Pledge Coalition
- [http://www.democrats.com/peace-pledge Democrats.com. Sign the Pledge for Peace petition. Bob Fertik August 19, 2007
- Legistorm: Center for Democracy in the Americas - Sponsor of Congressional Travel (accessed on August 30, 2010)
- official Congressional biography, accessed August 16, 2011,
- Congressional Progressive Caucus website: Caucus Member List
- official Congressional biography, accessed August 16, 2011,
- John Dingell's House website: Letter to Hillary Clinton, Dec. 22, 2009
- The Minnesota Independent: Ellison, McCollum and Oberstar urge Obama to lift Gaza blockade, Jan. 26, 2010 (accessed on March 14, 2011)
- Immigration Matters New America Media, Richard Stoltz, 0ctober 18, 2009
- Outrage Over Camp Destructions by Haitian Police (TransAfrica Forum) TransAfrica Forum May 26, 2011
- Frederica Wilson press release, Media Advisory: Congresswoman Wilson Hosts Forums on Haiti Policy Oct 26, 2011
- HAWG, Haiti Earthquake 2-Year Commemoration Events
- [https://www.facebook.com/events/156348027787338/?fref=nf FB African Descendants in the 21st Century: Race, Rights & Politics
- Yvette Clarke Facebook page, Oct. 13, 2012
- Update on Cuba Travel: We Gathered 59 Signatures, The LAWG Cuba Team: Mavis, Emily and Karina on May 03, 2013
- Granma Latin American legislators meet with members of U.S. Congress Havana. June 20, 2013
- MUNA, MUNA Civic Engagement Banquet 2013
- PDA May 2013 Educate Congress Digest Letter drops (191 in total – 105 in April )
- PDA June 2013 Educate Congress Digest
- CISPES press release, Press Statement: 51 Members of Congress Call for US Neutrality in Salvadoran Elections December 16, 2013
- El Universal CARACAS, Friday October 04, 2013 Venezuelan Embassy officials met with US politicians as well
- [http://retiredamericans.org/newsroom/friday-alert-archives/view/2013-10-activists-at-us-capitol-warn-dont-use-shutdown-to-cu ARA Activists at U.S. Capitol Warn: “Don’t Use Shutdown to Cut Benefits for Seniors” October 04, 2013]
- The WaPo, Nelson Mandela memorial: Who’s in attendance, By Terri Rupar December 10, 2013
- ABOUTallsfairinsportsandpolitics ~ #AFiSP Part 32: On New York 14 Tuesday Oct 2014
- Deferred Action for DREAMers
- The Daily Signal, Democrats Take ‘Hands Up, Don’t Shoot’ From Ferguson to House Floor December 03, 2014
- http://progressiveagenda.us/signers SIGNERS OF THE PROGRESSIVE AGENDA TO COMBAT INCOME INEQUALITY]
- Chowdury LinkedIN, accessed January 22, 2018
- PW, Brooklyn reps rebuff AIPAC, back Iran deal by: Chris Butters September 9 2015
- The Daily Caller, LUKE ROSIAK11:12 AM 02/04/2017
- [https://www.workers.org/2018/01/29/new-york-protesters-say-free-ravi-free-jean/WW New York protesters say Free Ravi, free Jean! By Anne Pruden posted on January 29, 2018]
- Legistorm: Yvette Clarke (accessed on Aug. 24, 2010)