Contact Federal Government Officials
- Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has announced that the Senate will unexpectedly convene for the first two weeks of August, “to provide more time to complete action on important legislative items and process nominees that have been stalled by a lack of cooperation from our friends across the aisle.” https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-07-11/senate-delays-august-recess-amid-unfinished-health-care-measure After McConnell’s blocking of the Merrick Garland SCOTUS nomination and his behind-closed-doors health care bill efforts, it is bold that he is citing “lack of cooperation” from Democrats as the key issues. Let’s remind McConnell that the GOP has the majority in the Senate right now and that Democrats have asked to be at the table discussing BCRA:https://www.mcconnell.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/contactform
- As we absorb the depth of the revelations in Don Trump Jr’s released email chain about Russia, nationally-read newspapers have come out with strong op-eds condemning his actions: 1) LA TIMES: http://www.latimes.com/opinion/editorials/la-ed-trump-emails-20170711-story.html, 2) NY TIMES: https://mobile.nytimes.com/2017/07/11/opinion/donald-trump-jr-emails-russia.html
3) WASHINGTON POST: https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/the-russia-hacking-story-is-no-longer-just-smoke-its-fire/2017/07/11/b8dc758c-665f-11e7-8eb5-cbccc2e7bfbf_story.html?hpid=hp_no-name_opinion-card-f%3Ahomepage%2Fstory&utm_term=.ec9a0da159f0, 4) and even the conservative NATIONAL REVIEW: http://www.nationalreview.com/article/449376/donald-trump-jr-e-mails-proof-trump-campaign-attempted-collusion-russia Let’s ask our members of Congress to avoid milquetoast replies to this situation
- David Frum, a conservative political commentator who was also a speechwriter for President George W. Bush, tweeted, "Why isn’t every GOP intel & foreign affairs committee chair House & Senate demanding removal of proven security risks from White House?" We think that is such a good question that we are all going to ask those chairs that very question. Find them here: 1) Senate Intel Committee: https://www.intelligence.senate.gov/, 2) Senate Foreign Relations Committee: https://www.foreign.senate.gov/about/committee-membership, 3) House Intel Committee: https://intelligence.house.gov/about/hpsci-majority-members.htm, 4) House Foreign Affairs Committee: https://foreignaffairs.house.gov/subcommittee/full-committee/
- Let’s check out Hands Off to see what is at stake in our Congressional districts if Trump/GOP’s budget passes and use this information to tell our stories to our representatives: https://handsoff.org/
- Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) said that he’s not asked about the Russian scandal, indicating that he thinks they don’t really care about it. https://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2017/06/20/ted_cruz_outside_of_dc_nobody_asks_about_russia_.html Let’s let him know that many of us do care and want him to take some action on it: https://www.cruz.senate.gov/?p=form&id=16
- “Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) is calling for using federal funding for Planned Parenthood and food stamps to help pay for President Trump’s southern border wall, the Washington Examiner reported Wednesday.” http://thehill.com/policy/finance/341626-rep-steve-king-build-mexico-border-wall-with-funds-from-planned-parenthood Let’s let our reps know that we do not support this idea at all. Let’s also contact Rep. King to let him know that we will all work together to make sure he does not get re-elected: https://steveking.house.gov/contact
- Federal Election Commissioner Ellen Weintraub is taking the threat of foreign influences on our elections seriously, and she is pushing her fellow FEC commissioners to take action. (https://www.bna.com/fec-delays-discussing-n73014460627/) The FEC will discuss her proposals at an open meeting today, and altFEC is asking for our help to make sure they don’t ignore this issue. Let’s write the commissioners and tell them we want them to protect our elections! Find their names here and e-mail them at email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com.
- Earlier this week, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau ruled that banks and credit card companies will no longer be allowed to force their customers to use arbitration to settle group disputes, opening the door for class-action lawsuits that actually give consumers power to make big companies do the right thing. This is a reminder of the important role the CFPB plays in protecting us against Wall Street… at a moment when Republicans are trying to eviscerate it. (http://www.cnbc.com/2017/06/08/house-has-votes-to-pass-choice-act-that-would-gut-dodd-frank-banking-reforms.html) Let’s take this opportunity to call our senators and tell them we want them to oppose the Wrong Choice Act so the CFPB can keep working for us. Let's also call our reps and tell them that we expect them to accept this rule and oppose any effort to use the Congressional Review Act to unwind it.
- Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) has put a call out to stakeholders, asking for input on tax reform, and we have until July 17th to respond http://thehill.com/policy/finance/338170-gop-chairman-seeks-tax-reform-recommendations Let's contact Senator Hatch to tell him how we feel about the GOP's plan to give tax breaks to the wealthiest among us, while cutting programs like Medicaid, Medicare, and SNAP. MomsRising has a form letter we can sign: http://action.momsrising.org/sign/taxcomments We can also send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
- On Tuesday night, Attorney General Jeff Sessions gave a speech to the anti-LGBTQ hate group Alliance Defending Freedom. Because the event was closed to the press, we do not know what his talking points were. Meanwhile, the ADF is representing the Colorado baker who refused service to a same-sex couple and whose case will be heard by the Supreme Court http://bit.ly/2sNXCiX DNC spokesman Joel Kasnetz stated “ADF has been previously designated a hate group and Sessions’ appearance at this event, as the top law enforcement official in the country, brings in to question whether the attorney general intends to protect all Americans.” Let's call the Attorney General and ask him how we are to believe that he will stand up for equality if he is speaking at anti-LGBTQ events 202-353-1555 Let's also give our MoC a call to make sure that they are holding the Attorney General accountable for his actions
- “Rep. Brad Sherman (D-Calif.) formally introduced an article of impeachment against President Trump on Wednesday that accuses the president of obstructing justice during the federal investigation of Russia’s 2016 election interference.” http://thehill.com/homenews/house/341677-house-dem-files-article-of-impeachment-against-trump Let’s thank him and Rep. Al Green (D-TX) who is the sole supporter at this time, for taking this serious step. Rep. Sherman: https://sherman.house.gov/contact and Rep. Green: http://algreen.house.gov/
- “The Department of State paid more than $15,000 for rooms at the Trump International Hotel & Tower Vancouver upon its opening in February” http://thehill.com/homenews/administration/341676-department-of-state-paid-15000-for-trump-hotel-rooms-report Let’s let the State Department know that we don’t think that any sitting president should be making money off the government: http://contact-us.state.gov/ or U.S. Department of State, 2201 C Street NW, Washington, DC 20520, or 202-647-4000. Let’s tell our MoCs the same thing.
- Despite the Republican’s dire warnings, the annual report of the Social Security board of Trustees, to be released today (Thursday), will show that Social Security has a large surplus―$2.8 trillion today, rising to about $2.9 trillion by 2019, according to Social Security Works. The Center on Budget & Policy Priorities points out that repealing and replacing the ACA would speed the depletion of the Medicare trust fund and challenges the instability of SSDI spending claimed by Mick Mulvaney, OBM director: https://www.cbpp.org/blog/previewing-the-social-security-and-medicare-trustees-reports Before Congressional Republicans move to gut Social Security, as they are clearly aching to do, we need to call our Congresspeople and make sure they know WE know that there is no basis for Social Security cuts.
- Remember Rep. Devin Nunes, (R-CA) protecting Trump over the Russian investigation? You can help unseat him. Fresno Indivisible is asking for help from anyone to register voters in that district. Here's the link: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSd4PU5ehUVKe7GufSdkjLMaGASfGZNJHwHsg0c_KHY8J7y95A/viewform
- On May 12, 2017, the US Department of Justice settled at $230 million money-laundering case for less than $6 million, with no admission of wrongdoing, just two days before the case was to go to trial. The defense attorney was Natalia Veselnitskaya—the same lawyer who on June 9, 2016, met with Donald Trump, Jr., Jared Kushner, and Paul Manafort on the promise that she would disclose “dirt” on Hillary Clinton. The Democrats on the House Judiciary Committee have written a letter to Attorney General Jeff Sessions expressing their concern that there may be a connection between the settlement of this case and the meeting between Trump, Jr., et al., and Veselnitskaya. https://democrats-judiciary.house.gov/sites/democrats.judiciary.house.gov/files/documents/7.12.17%20LETTER%20AG%20SESSIONS%20-%20WE%20WANT%20ANSWERS%20ON%20FRAUD%20SETTLEMENT%2C%20MEETING%20AT%20TRUMP%20TOWER.pdf Let’s join them in asking Sessions why the case was settled for $6 million just two days before trial. The Honorable Jeff Sessions, Attorney General, US Department of Justice, 950 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20530; 202-353-1555; or https://www.justice.gov/doj/webform/your-message-department-justice
- MO: In response to the passing of Missouri legislation making it more difficult to sue for discrimination, the NAACP Missouri chapter has issued a travel advisory against the state http://bit.ly/2vcz8B5 For those of us who live in Missouri, let's contact Governor Eric Greitens and let him know our thoughts on his signing into law this harmful legislation: Office of Governor Eric Greitens P.O. Box 720 Jefferson City, MO 65102 Phone: (573) 751-3222
- FL: Floridians hear a lot about the restoration of the Everglades but may not know the history of how we arrived where we are now. In her article, Miami Herald journalist Mary Ellen Klas takes us through some of the history and politics of the Everglades and its relationship to the sugar industry (aka Big Sugar.) http://www.miamiherald.com/news/local/environment/article88992067.html Let's tell our Florida state representatives, state senators and Governor Rick Scott that we want the Everglades restoration project to move forward and not keep stalling. Use Governor Scott's contact form http://www.flgov.com/contact-gov-scott/email-the-governor/ or write to: Office of the Governor, 400 Monroe St, Tallahassee FL 32399-0001 or call: 850-717-9337. We can provide feedback to Mary Ellen Klas about her article at her email: email@example.com or write to: Mary Ellen Klas, c/o Miami Herald, Tallahassee Bureau, 3511 NW 91st Ave, Miami FL 33172.
- IL: From Politics Now: “Illinois Governor Rauner has a bill on his desk which he can show great compassion, or he can show he is a heartless man. The bill is House Bill 2721, Charlie's Law, which stops insurance companies from pretending they are doctors and forces them to cover a known disease called brain inflammation. CBS 2 News in Chicago did [this]: https://www.facebook.com/cbschicago/videos/10155651343758338/ any my colleague from Chicago Now wrote this article about the disease and the bill.” If we are in Illinois, let’s contact Gov. Rauner and tell him to do the right thing: https://www.illinois.gov/gov/contactus/Pages/default.aspx
- Karen Gaddis, Democrat for Oklahoma State House District 75, won her election Tueday! http://www.tulsaworld.com/homepagelatest/democrat-karen-gaddis-scores-surprise-victory-in-state-house-district/article_abe78955-8cb5-528a-97a4-c6cf452b2d23.html For those of us who participated in writing postcards to Karen's constituents via Tony the Democrat or worked on her campaign, let's give ourselves a pat on the back. The final vote tally was 1072 to 977. Every action counts. Every vote counts.
- Arkansas has some very troubling anti-abortion laws coming into effect this month that include needing permission from the father: http://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/groups-prepare-challenge-especially-cruel-arkansas-abortion-laws-n781951The ACLU has filed suit to block these laws. If you are not already supporting the ACLU, please consider donating: https://action.aclu.org/donate-aclu?ms=web_horiz_nav_hp
- From #GeeksResist: In response to the Trump Administration's G20 video (https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/jul/09/donald-trump-g20-video-make-america-great-again-song), The Resistance presents #ThisIsAmerica A reminder of who we really are. Join us for the World Premiere of #ThisIsAmerica on Twitter, Saturday, July15th at 8pm EDT. Search for #ThisIsAmerica, or follow @JeanGrey80, to help the video go viral.
- From Postcards for America: All Hands on Deck for #Healthcare, so here a link to an Electronic Postcarding #PC2A (in this case *Tweeting) "TweetSheet" that makes it very simple. There is one for each of the #13Senators. Instructions: When you click on the links in this Document, 1) they will open your Twitter window (you may have to sign in), 2) The Tweet will appear, 3) Click on icon to the left of the heart (looks like two arrows in a circle) to open the retweet window, 4) Then click the retweet button, and 5) Click on the heart to “Like”. https://docs.google.com/document/d/1jnokya4T2mQEOaOb1FA0KA0Ivkxfc8NQhkfadNdd24A/edit
- The 300 "had gathered for a dedication ceremony for a modest, open-air prayer chapel in a West Hempfield Township [PA] cornfield. “We dedicate this land, this arbor as a place of holy resistance.” The chapel is — at least for now — in the path of the Atlantic Sunrise Pipeline." http://lancasteronline.com/news/show-up-for-nuns-chapel-dedication-to-express-opposition-to/article_606cf44c-6503-11e7-ac31-37f3a4260951.html Let's send a note of thanks for standing up for their values to the nuns of the Adorers of the Blood of Christ at 3954 Columbia Avenue, Columbia, Pennsylvania 17512
- It’s the six-month anniversary of ProPublica’s Documenting Hate project to establish a national database that will give a picture of the nature and prevalence of hate, bias, and violence in America. Here’s their progress report: https://www.propublica.org/article/what-we-know-and-dont-know-about-hate-crimes-in-america ProPublica says we can help by telling them our stories, https://projects.propublica.org/graphics/hatecrimes-form , and by following the project on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/DocumentingHateProPublica/ and Twitter https://twitter.com/DocumentHate
- "The law behind the NSA’s sweeping Internet surveillance programs—Section 702, as enacted by the FISA Amendments Act—is set to expire at the end of 2017...Sen. Tom Cotton and a group of other Senate Republicans recently introduced a bill (S. 1297) that would not only reauthorize Section 702 without making much-needed changes, but it would also make the law permanent, effectively forfeiting lawmakers’ responsibility to periodically reexamine Section 702 and the impact it has on their constituents." Let's sign this petition to let Sen. Cotton know that we don't think the NSA should be able to spy on our online communications without a warrant: https://act.eff.org/action/tell-congress-don-t-make-internet-spying-powers-permanent
- Let’s join the National Women’s Law Center, which advocates for women's rights through litigation and policy initiatives, in telling Congress to reject Trumps budget cuts: https://act.nwlc.org/onlineactions/1OLD6MvaEk29mlgjhcBBbQ2?ms=A_Budget2017_FBAd_RTG
Marches/events to attend/organize
- Monday, July 24, the Millions Marching for Medicare 4 All national march will be held on the West Lawn of the Capitol grounds. If we can’t attend, we can host or locate events here: http://www.millionsmarchingformedicare.org/
- “I Don’t Believe in Climate Change. I Believe in God” http://presbyearthcare.blogspot.com/2017/06/i-dont-believe-in-climate-change.html
- Written by one of our own regular contributors, this piece brings our attention to a dirty little secret that needs to be brought out into the light and addressed: http://lawmagazine.bc.edu/2017/06/dirty-little-secret/
- An updated look at the healthcare bill struggle: http://www.politico.com/story/2017/07/12/obamacare-repeal-effort-collapses-240481