Contact Federal Government Officials
- The Trump/Russia investigation is gaining new information and steam, but let’s not get distracted from the healthcare issue. Along with all those beautiful stories about the benefits from ACA that people are sharing, a new study from the Kaiser foundation shows good news about the ACA. "Insurers’ financial results have improved since the initial couple of years of the health law, the analysis finds. For example, it found that insurers in the first quarter of this year paid out 75 percent of their premiums in claims. That's a significant improvement from the first quarter of 2015, when 88 percent of premiums were paid out for claims. Average claims costs also grew slowly in the first part of this year, pushing back on fears that healthy people would drop coverage." http://thehill.com/policy/healthcare/341249-study-obamacare-market-stabilizing-not-collapsing Let's make this point when calling our senators about their poor excuse for a healthcare plan. No repeal, no replace. Let's ask them to spend their time and energy fixing a plan that is already working for so many.
- Donald Trump continues to bow and stoop before Putin on Russia’s attack on the integrity of our elections. He’s made it clear we can’t trust him. And the Republican Party has made it clear that they’ll happily make noise on television about his outrages, but won’t actually take any action. But now, with the news about Donald, Jr and his meeting with the Russian lawyer, it is increasingly important that the House (like the Senate has already done) pass the sanctions bill to hold Trump accountable. http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/politics/ct-democrats-russia-sanctions-bill-20170710-story.html Let’s call or write our reps and tell them we want them to pass a bill that empowers both parties’ members of Congress to crack down on Trump if he tries to let Putin off the hook, and we want them to do it as fast as possible.
- Our members of Congress aren’t taking Trump’s attempts at voter suppression lying down. (http://www.cnn.com/2017/06/30/politics/kris-kobach-voter-commission-rolls/index.html) Rep. Marc Veasey, co-chair of the Congressional Voting Rights Caucus, has introduced legislation to defund the Trump-Kobach commission that’s trying to undermine our right to vote. Let’s join our allies at Connecting Dots and call our members of Congress and ask them to co-sponsor H.R. 3029 and do whatever they can to move it forward.
- House GOP members are
trying to deregulate gun silencers, under the Hearing Protection Act of
2017 (H.R. 367). Under this bill, buyers would no longer be required to
register, nor would they have to undergo background checks. Let's not
pretend that silencers are being purchased simply to protect our ears, as
is argued by legislators and the silencer industry http://n.pr/2mtcyE0 Let's
give our representatives a call to let them know we want them to oppose
H.R. 367. We can also sign MomsRising's form letter http://action.momsrising.org/sign/NODeregSilencers3/ We need to make sure our congresspeople
understand that gun control, NOT more guns in more places, make us safer.
- Among the many issues with the GOP's BCRA is the way in which is harms women's healthcare. From maternity care, to contraceptive coverage, to prenatal care, and cancer prevention, BCRA is severely lacking http://bit.ly/2tjkSZs Let's give our senators a call and let them know that providing coverage for women's specific healthcare needs should be a requisite for all insurance plans https://5calls.org/issue/rec93l9Xn27lDR7s2
- Senator Shelly Moore Capito (R-WV) says that if she has to be the one to kill the Trumpcare bill then she will be. “I only see it through the lens of a vulnerable population who needs help, who I care about very deeply,” she said during an interview. http://thehill.com/homenews/senate/341197-wva-republican-if-i-have-to-be-that-one-person-to-kill-healthcare-bill-i-will Let's ask our own Republican Senators to join Capito in rejecting Trumpcare. We can thank: Shelly Moore Capito, 48 Donley St Ste 504, Morgantown WV 26501-5900 or call her Washington office at: 202-224-6472.
- Ryan Zinke's Interior Department is working to fast-track drilling on public lands. https://www.nrdc.org/experts/nrdc/zinke-fast-tracks-oil-and-gas-exploration-public-lands Let's tell all of our MoC's that we are against drilling on public lands (even without the fast-tracking). We can also contact Ryan Zinke at: US Dept of the Interior, 1849 C Street NW, Washington DC 20240 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org or use the contact form on their website: https://www.doi.gov/contact-us (scroll down on the linked page for form) or phone: Interior Dept: 202-208-3100.
- Life After Hate, a group dedicated to deradicalizing neo-Nazis and stopping white extremism, was on tap to receive a grant to support their work, but the Trump administration has dropped them as a grantee. Heidi Beirich , director of the Intelligence Project at the Southern Poverty Law Center said in a statement to Newsweek: “The Trump administration doesn’t ’t take seriously the threat from the radical right." . http://www.newsweek.com/far-right-alt-right-neo-nazis-life-after-hate-628829 Let’s let the White and Homeland Security know that WE do take this threat seriously. White House: https://www.whitehouse.gov/contact / Homeland Security: https://www.dhs.gov/direct-contact-information. Let’s let our MoCs know as well.
- For any of us unsure about what to do next to make clear our opposition to the Republican Wealthcare bill, Planned Parenthood has provided a convenient tool for contacting our senators: https://www.istandwithpp.org/call Even if we’ve already called our senators, another call, specifically about the plan to defund PP, is worth our making.
- Richard Painter, a law professor and a White House ethics lawyer for George W. Bush, tweeted, “When a Russian agent calls to offer dirt on a political opponent, a loyal American will call the FBI.” As we know, Donald Trump, Jr. chose to meet with the Russian attorney instead. https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/the-latest-trump-russia-story-has-the-makings-of-a-blockbuster/ We know that the Trump family has ethics issues, boundary issues, and privilege issues. Let’s tell our MoCs that these are not the values our country was founded upon nor for which our soldiers have given their lives. Let’s also share our concerns with the Government Ethics Office: https://www.oge.gov/web/oge.nsf/Organization/Contact%20Us?opendocument
- MI: The public comment period to weigh in on Enbridge's Line 5 pipeline, which runs through two of the Great Lakes, is open. Opposition to the pipeline is bipartisan, with many Michigan residents voicing their desire to shut down the pipeline entirely http://bit.ly/2uf3Usy Oil & Water Don't Mix has offered a form letter that we can send to the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, which outlines six major reasons why it is necessary to decommission Line 5. Let's check it out, and offer any additional comments that we may have http://www.oilandwaterdontmix.org/comment_to_shutdown
- CO: If you're a registered voter in Colorado, the Indivisible groups there are very well-organized. They recently launched a website that suggests a weekly action. This week: given that the CO Secretary of State has agreed to cooperate with the Kobach commission, it is unsurprising that hundreds of CO voters have deregistered. Indivisible Denver encourages us to stay registered, otherwise we'll lose what voice we have! Check the website for events, how to join, online forums, etc. In another state and looking for resistance ideas? Another reason to check out the site. http://indivisibledenver.club/weekly-call-to-action/
- ALL: “Organizers in Texas are engaged in a “Summer of Resistance,” asking other states and organizations for help in boycotting Texas’ anti-immigrant legislation. “ For more information and to see how we can help, let’s go here: http://actiontogethernetwork.org/a-summer-of-resistance-in-texas/
- If we want to find a practical way to help undocumented immigrants, we can look into the work of Justice for Our Neighbors, which “supports a hospitality ministry that welcomes immigrants by providing free or low-cost, expert immigration legal services to low-income immigrants, refugees and asylum seekers. We also engage in advocacy for immigrant justice, and offer education to communities of faith and to the public.” Let’s see where we can help: http://njfon.org/
- Let's read this opinion from Leonard Pitts of the Miami Herald questioning if the Republican Party has lost its mind. http://www.miamiherald.com/opinion/opn-columns-blogs/leonard-pitts-jr/article159712234.html We can write responses to Leonard Pittman at his email address: email@example.com or Leonard Pitts, Miami Herald, 3511 NW 91st Ave, Miami FL 33172.
- Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) is looking for more people to join in his book club. For this summer he’s “chosen Matthew Desmond’s Pulitzer Prize-winning Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City, a book that I’ve recently picked up and can’t put back down because it deals with many issues—from poverty to bad housing conditions to economic injustice—that I confronted during my time in public office, starting nearly 20 years ago as a city councilman in Newark, New Jersey. The book focuses on Milwaukee, Wisconsin, but the heartbreaking stories of these families’ struggles following the 2008 financial crisis are stories that can be told in every American city.” We can sign up here for updates: http://act.corybooker.com/page/s/2017-summer-book-club
- Let’s offer our support to the 18 state attorneys general who are suing Betsy DeVos for rescinding federal protections that held abusive for-profit colleges accountable for cheating students and taxpayers out of billions of dollars in federal loans. Here’s the petition being circulated by the National Education Association: https://actionnetwork.org/forms/i-support-borrower-protections-and-the-lawsuit-to-uphold-them
Marches/events to attend/organize
- The Movement 4 Black Lives
will hold its sixth political education webinar, on “Ending the War on
Black People,” on Wednesday, July 12, at 7 (EST). An
explanation of this plank of the M4BL policy platform is here: https://policy.m4bl.org/end-war-on-black-people/
We can register here:
- If we want to know how the cuts in Housing and Urban Development will affect our communities, we can look at these pages from Affordable Housing Online—and be horrified: https://affordablehousingonline.com/FY18-hud-budget-cuts Affordable housing groups have plans to fight these draconian cuts: there will be a Tenants March on Washington on July 12 (https://www.facebook.com/events/492130201134852/); Our Homes, Our Voices is calling for a national week of action on July 22-29 (https://www.ourhomes-ourvoices.org); and a Renters Week of Action is being planned for Sept. 18-23. To stay apprised of the campaigns against the HUD budget cuts, consider signing up for emails from the Right to the City at http://righttothecity.org/
- “It’s no longer Donald Trump in the spotlight. It’s the Republican leaders in Congress.” https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2017/07/will-congress-hold-russia-accountable-for-the-behavior-trump-excuses/533058/
- “The United States has shown remarkably little concern for the children of the war-torn and violence-ridden areas of the Greater Middle East.” http://billmoyers.com/story/refugee-crisis-where-have-children-gone/