MoveOn’s most ambitious goal is to turn the long August recess of 2015 into the summer of peace. The inspiration comes — just a little — from the other side. In 2009, the last Democratic Congress was almost brought to heel at town halls, a combination of grassroots activism and top-level strategizing by groups like Americans for Prosperity. Tea Party activists packed the once-sleepy meetings of their local representatives. Some viral videos made some voters into celebrities; others made congressmen into former congressmen. (The 60-day countdown for congressional action on the deal takes the recess into consideration; had the deal been finished earlier, the countdown would have lasted 30 days.)
In an interview with The Washington Post, Galland said that the 2009 protests were motivated by “latent racism,” while the MoveOn “mass mobilization” was a drive for peace. It would mark a return to MoveOn’s heyday, in the run-up to the 2003 invasion of Iraq. During George W. Bush’s presidency, what started as an organization asking Congress to “censure and move on” from the Bill Clinton scandals, became a potent anti-war force.
“It’s been a long time since we’ve seen something like this,” she said. “The mobilizations around the Iraq War were really the last visible effort.”