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 4/29/19   

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1.      THIS WEEK IN CONGRESS: The House will consider nine (9) bills this week starting Monday. Let's look at The Weekly Leader so we know what's coming. The Senate starts off the week by resuming consideration of William Cooper to be General Counsel of the Department of Energy. (Source: Senate Floor Schedule) 

2.      IMMIGRATION: DETENTION FACILITY CONDITIONS: While this hasn’t been recently covered by the mainstream media, conditions at ICE detention centers are still horrific, with reports of denial of medications, bedsheets made of nooses, and prohibitions against throwing out old bread. https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2019/03/01/inspection-finds-ice-detainee-conditions-endanger-health-safety/?utm_term=.6010c9d6e927ICE itself noted the problems after a visit to one detention center in Adelanto, CArun by the for-profit GEO group. According to the ACLUthere are “no regulations or enforceable standards” in detention centers for medical treatment or mental health care. Let’s tell our MoCs that access to medical treatment is a basic human right for every person currently on our soil and ask them to pass legislation to assure that everyone in detention has their health needs met.  

3.      ELECTION SECURITY/RUSSIAN HACKING: The former head of the Department of Homeland Security, Kirstjen Nielsen, had targeted measures against Russian hacking in the 2020 election as a top priority, but she was told by Chief of Staff, Mick Mulvaney, not to bring this issue up with Trump https://www.businessinsider.com/mulvaney-kirstjen-nielsen-trump-russia-interference-2020-election-report-2019-4 because it highlighted Russia’s role in helping him win in 2016, a fact now confirmed by the Mueller Report, that calls the entire legitimacy of the election into question. Let’s tell our MoCs that they have to take strong and immediate measures to protect our voting system for 2020. Let’s also continue to spread the word throughout all our networks that the Mueller Report has confirmed beyond the shadow of a doubt that the 2016 election is illegitimate and Trump would not have won without the help of the Russians.  

4.      FED RESERVE NOMINEE, STEPHEN MOORE: While we can be happy about nominee Herman Cain’s withdrawalnominee Stephen Moore, has been on record for continually degrading comments about women. He has even questioned co-ed sports and come out against equal pay, claiming that if women earn more than men, men will become economically expendable and divorce rates will rise. https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/23/us/politics/stephen-moore-women.htmlLet’s tell our Senators that these views are abhorrent and against the Civil Rights Act, and that Moore must withdraw immediately. 

5.      SYNAGOGUE SHOOTING:  A tragic shooting took place in a synagogue on Saturday near San Diego on the last night of Passover:     https://www.reuters.com/article/us-california-shooting/rabbi-recalls-coming-face-to-face-with-shooter-at-california-synagogue-idUSKCN1S406S   Let’s take a moment to let our MoC know that having a president stoke the fires of anti-Semitism and White Nationalism continues to be deadly and cannot continue. Let’s also express our condolences to the congregation:  https://www.chabadpoway.com/tools/feedback.htm 

6.      EPA PROPOSED RULE CHANGE:  Under pressure from the Defense department, the EPA intends to weaken the standard for cleaning  up toxic groundwater pollution from per- and polyfluoroalkyls (PFAs) that contaminates the drinking water of millions of us; the new rules drop a measure that allowed the EPA to take emergency action to clean up pollution sites and emphasizes instead longer-term remedial actions—which can take years—even in instances in which the government has confirmed that drinking water has been contaminated: https://thehill.com/policy/energy-environment/440874-critics-accuse-epa-of-weakening-pollution-rule-for-pentagon and https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/25/us/epa-chemical-standards-water.html  We have 45 days, UNTIL JUNE 10, to protect our water supplies from these dangerous chemicals, and many too few of us have objected to this proposed new standard.  To comment:   https://www.regulations.gov/docket?D=EPA-HQ-OLEM-2019-0229 

7.      BARR AND CONGRESSIONAL HEARING:  Attorney General William Barr continues to play chicken with the rule of law and our constitution. He does not like the planned questioning format of his upcoming Congressional hearing and might not appear: https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/apr/28/william-barr-house-hearing-mueller-report  Let’s let our MoCs know that it is clear that the Trump administration has zero intent to respect norms and laws and that we expect more brisk action against the corruption of this administration and let’s also remind AG Barr that he works for us and that his actions are unacceptable:  https://www.justice.gov/contact-us 

8.      DISASTER RELIEF: While the Senate began its recess without approving additional funds for disaster relief, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) has presented another concern for those in the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico: the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has stalled the dispersal of Community Development Block Grant Disaster Recovery funds (https://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-19-232). As of the release of the GAO report, none of the already-approved block grant disaster relief for the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico had been accessed. The Inspector General of HUD is investigating whether the Trump administration has interfered with disaster relief funding, but in the meantime, children and adults in these territories are suffering mental health crises. (https://n.pr/2IS5KtThttps://bit.ly/2OMvQ1I). Let's contact our MoCs and ask them to not only approve funding for the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico, but to also review the recommendations by the Government Accountability Office and pressure HUD to distribute relief funds. 

9.      SCIENCE AT THE USDA: In an anti-science move many of us probably missed, Agriculture secretary Sonny Perdue announced plans to relocate the Economic Research Service and the National Institute of Food and Agriculture outside the nation's capital last August--despite the fact that 56 former USDA and federal statistical agency officials, including former deputy and undersecretaries, and 1,100 scientists and economists have told him or congressional leaders that such a move would threaten the USDA’s scientific integrity: https://www.farmprogress.com/usda/scientists-economists-call-ers-nifa-stay-washington-dc  Nevertheless, Purdue is determined to undermine these agencies, who play a critical policy role: https://www.savannahnow.com/news/20190425/trump-administration-to-move-usda-research-divisions-despite-concerns Let’s raise a fuss and let the USDA know that we want good science to govern the policy that protects our food supply: 202-720-2791 or USDA, 1400 Independence Ave, SW, Washington DC 20250. 

10. CONGRESSIONAL OBSTRUCTION: Trump has declared that he will fight “all the subpoenas” issued by the House, and apparently he  means it:  Treasury missed a Tuesday deadline to produce Trump's tax returns, the WH personnel security director was told not to answer a Congressional subpoena, the WH plans to sue over the subpoena issued to WH counsel Don McGhan, and Commerce secretary Wilbur Ross has already refused to answer Congress’s questions about the 2020 census. Since subpoenas and contempt citations issued by Congress last only for the duration of that Congress, that is, until January 21, 2021, it’s pretty clear Trump hopes to play for time by going to court and/or claiming executive privilege: https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/440409-trump-says-hell-fight-all-the-subpoenas or https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/24/us/politics/donald-trump-subpoenas.html.  For details on how Trump might fight specific subpoenas, we can consult https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2019/04/24/how-trump-congress-subpoena-fight-is-likely-play-out/  Let’s tell our MoCs and the White House that obstructing Congress in its duties is not an executive privilege. 

11.  ANOTHER ETHICS INVESTIGATION IN INTERIOR DEPARTMENT “Following allegations of a “disturbing pattern of misconduct” at Donald Trump’s interior department, based in part on Guardian reporting, the agency’s watchdog has opened an investigation into six top officials there. It comes in response to a 20 February ethics complaint filed by the Campaign Legal Center, a non-partisan watchdog group, that alleged a culture of “skirting ethical rules” among key staff appointed in the wake of Trump’s November 2016 election victory. “Former [interior] secretary Ryan Zinke and [current interior] secretary David Bernhardt, now under investigation himself for ethics violations, have failed to demonstrate adequate ethical behavior at the top of Interior. Last week, the inspector general opened a wide-ranging investigation into allegations that Bernhardt has violated federal ethics rules by involving himself in a series of official decisions that potentially benefited his former lobbying clients, such as a powerful agricutural group in California. That investigation is ongoing.” https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/apr/23/skirting-ethical-rules-trumps-key-staff-under-investigation-at-interior-agency   Let’s remind Bernhardt he works for the US citizens not his friends or former clients. Contact him here https://www.doi.gov/contact-us   

12.     PUBLIC COMMENTS NEEDED:  Comments and actions week ending May 5, 2019 includes exposing miners to diesel exhaust, RoundUp comment period, definition of college credit hour, ACA, Election integrity & voting systems, Energy efficiency standards, CFPB payday loans.  Let’s check here and comment where we  can:  https://drive.google.com/file/d/1yyVvbP6FFIJX3AtPS1KSuVk31a-0WDmL/view 

Election/Voting 

1.      NEW POSTCARDING CAMPAIGNS: Postcards To Voters' a) Campaign 156: Melanie Hughes for Allen TX City Council. b) Campaign 157: Dona Kim Murphey and Joseph Say for Pearland ISD in TXLet's request 5 addresses today for one of the open campaigns. 

Other Actions 

1.      CONTEST EVERY RACE: “520,000 elected offices—and Democrats aren’t competing in up to 75% of them,” declares Contest Every Race, a program of Resistance Labs https://contesteveryrace.com/ . Resistance Labs is looking for folks who can make a 3-6 hour commitment to join their Research Team. Our work will help recruit and elect Democratic candidates up and down the ballot. To find out more and to volunteer, let’s visit:   https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLScoYsWrHB7AC7BHo_8OTY1L9M_-rsj44h1WPaiV9pET_SvBkw/viewform 

2.      IOWA STATE REP LEAVES THE REPUBLICAN PARTY, CITING TRUMP: State Rep Andy McKean, a life-long Republican who serves IA House District 58 (Jackson County and parts of Jones County and Dubuque County), has announced that he is leaving the Republican Party to join the Democrats, shrinking the GOP’s majority to 53-47. https://siouxcityjournal.com/news/state-and-regional/govt-and-politics/anamosa-rep-andy-mckean-leaves-iowa-gop-for-democrats/article_7216508c-5d01-5888-9732-0f0e6cd22a19.html His key reason for leaving, he said in a statement, is his inability to support Trump as the standard bearer of the GOPLet’s read his full statement here, https://www.bleedingheartland.com/2019/04/23/iowa-house-member-andy-mckean-leaves-republican-caucus/and let’s send Rep Andy McKean a message of thanks: andy.mckean@legis.iowa.govor 509 S Oak St, Anamosa, IA 52205. 

3.      PUERTO RICO: The people of Puerto Rico have a request for our presidential candidates. "We, the undersigned organizations, representing millions from the Puerto Rican Diaspora and allies, strongly urge you to publicly support a comprehensive platform addressing the fiscal and economic crises facing the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico." Let's share this detailed open letter with presidential candidates and ask them to respond:  https://www.power4puertorico.com/lettertocandidates 

4.      UNIQUE MOTHERS' DAY GIFT OPTIONS: The International Rescue Committee helps people whose lives have been upended by conflict and disaster. The organization offers a variety of Mothers' Day gifts including a baby kits filled with clothing, baby soap, diapers and other necessities, that encourage moms come to their medical centers to give birth, meaning more moms will have a healthy and safe delivery and the supplies they need to care for their precious newborns. Let's check out the gift options at Rescue.org and dedicate a gift to someone special.  
 
5.      2020 DEMOCRATIC PRIMARY: Indivisible is promoting a positive 3-step pledge that we can sign on to:  A) Make the primary constructive, B) Rally behind the winner -- no matter who it is, and C) Do the work to beat Trump. Seems reasonable to us! We can take the pledge, and donate to Indivisible if we can, here:   https://pledge.indivisible.org/ 

6.      CAMPAIGN HELP:  Not sure what issues your potential constituents find important?  Let's crowdsource the issues that the candidates should address in their campaigns: https://thedemlabs.org/2019/04/02/let-voters-tell-you-directly-what-they-care-about-with-real-time-crowdsourcing/  

7.      SCHOOL LIBRARY BOOKS:  Former Minnesota Senator Al Franken (D), who once sat on the Senate Indian Affairs Committee, is asking for our help in providing library books for the new Bug-O-Nay-Ge-Shig School in northern Minnesota.   Let’s see how we can help:  https://alfranken.com/read/books-for-bug-o-nay-ge-shig-school-in-leech-lake-mn 

8.      AMY SISKIND'S WEEKLY LIST: Experts in authoritarianism advise us to keep a list of things subtly changing around us, so we’ll remember. Amy Siskind is keeping that list for us.  Amy writes, "This week Trump’s White House refused all requests by House Democrats to interview current or former members of the regime, or to turn over records, including those requested by subpoena." Let's review Week 128. 

9.      INCREASE VOTER TURNOUT THROUGH FACEBOOK:  If we are interested in ways to Increase voter turnout, we can check out this University of Texas article on the ways to use Facebook to motivate voters. So elegant observations are: In one study, turnout among individuals who received praise messages was 16 percent higher than those who received no reminder. Turnout among those who received shaming messages was 24 percent higher. In these individual studies, tagging one’s Facebook friends proved significantly more effective than traditional mobilization campaigns, which typically increase voter turnout by 3 to 8 percent.     “Simply tagging friends in a reminder to vote is insufficient,” Haenschen said. “It is the heightened visibility of individuals’ voting behavior made possible on Facebook that appears to be driving turnout.” We can read this article on increasing turnout and, if we wish, apply the recommended strategy: The best way to actually increase participation is to identify reluctant voters in your social circle and tag them in a Facebook post praising them for voting in the past and reminding them you'll know if they skipped the election this time around." https://moody.utexas.edu/news/facebook-more-effective-mobilizing-voters-traditional-get-out-vote-efforts-study-finds 

10. POSTCARDING ISSUES:  Looking for a list of issues and addresses to use with our postcarding group.  Here is one from one of our own:  https://docs.google.com/document/d/128IEcff_sCgFWTx3EOPXugMh3KUz9AtTB5ApxK4XGwI/edit 

State Actions 

1.      LA, MS, VA, WI: JOIN NEW SISTER DISTRICT TEAMS—Founded after the 2016 presidential election, the Sister District Project (SDP) works to get Democrats elected in state legislatures across the country,   https://sisterdistrict.com/  As SDP points out, “elections in 2019 and 202 are the last chance for Democrats to gain power in state legislatures prior to redistricting in 2021, which will determine electoral maps for the next decade.” https://sisterdistrict.com/why-states-matter/2019-2020-political-strategy/ . New SDP teams are forming in LA, MS, VA, and WI. If we’re in these states, let’s get involved by contacting team@sisterdistrictma.com      

2.      CA PROTECT OUR LANDMARK CLIMATE CHANGE BILL:   SB 100, our landmark climate bill signed into law last year is now in danger from SB 386 which passed Senate Energy this week. The bill would effectively gut and undermine SB 100 by allowing electricity generated from EXISTING LARGE HYDRO DAMS to count towards the 60% renewable energy standard established under SB 100.  Since the irrigation districts are already fully sourced, this means they can take credit for their hydro, and then sell off their existing RPS compliant resources.  It effectively guts SB 350 and SB 100.  If they can count existing large hydro, there are no new renewable resources needed. This bill does not need to go through appropriations and folks are afraid they may just take it up to the Senate floor very quickly to try to move it before people notice. We can call our Senator at  (213) 745-6656 , and tell them to vote NO ON SB 386, using this script if we would like.: "Hello, my name is <NAME> from <TOWN>. I'm calling to express serious concern about SB 386, a bill that would effectively gut the renewable energy goals set forth in SB 100 by allowing large hydro dams to count toward the standard. Climate change is an emergency and I expect California to lead the way in environmental reform, not undermine our own progress. Can I count on my Senator to vote NO on SB 386 on the Senate floor?"     

3.      FL: BILL TO IMPOSE FEES ON EX-FELONS BEFORE THEY CAN VOTE: Despite 64% of Floridians voting to restore ex-felon voting rights in November, the Florida House just passed a bill requiring these people to pay all restitution and court fees before they can vote. https://www.axios.com/florida-house-passes-bill-requiring-former-felons-pay-voting-d8050b00-68bd-454b-ae0a-50baf6a77eba.htmlThis is a slap in the face to all Florida voters, and the modern-day equivalent of an unconstitutional poll tax. The bill now heads to the SenateLet’s tell our State Senators to honor the will of the electorate and vote against this bill. 

4.      FL: IMMIGRATION: The House has passed the anti-immigration HB 527, with a vote expected on the Senate's version of the bill (SB 168very soon (https://cbsn.ws/2ZwhKqU). The bills would prohibit sanctuary cities and require law enforcement agencies to work with ICE and identify people who may not have legal citizenship (https://bit.ly/2FDMYmw). It would also require correctional facilities to detain any person who ICE requests to be held (https://bit.ly/2I7bfVd). 1 of 5 Florida residents is an immigrant and almost a million live with an undocumented family member; immigrants compose one quarter of the Florida labor force. Let's contact our state senators and tell them that we strongly oppose these bills, and expect them to vote against them. We can also check to see how our state reps voted on the bill, and hold them accountable or thank them for their vote. 

5.      TN: VOTER SUPPRESSION: Tennessee has one of the lowest voter turnouts in the country, but the state legislature is trying to enact bills that would restrict voter registration even more. “The state House approved House Bill 1079/Senate Bill 971 on partisan lines on April 15 and the Senate approved it 25-6 on Thursday, with Republican Sen. Steve Dickerson of Nashville joining the five Democrats in the Senate. Senators still have to work out some differences with the House, but it will go to Gov. Bill Lee sooner than later.”   https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/24/opinion/tennessees-voter-registration-drives.html Let’s tell Gov. Lee to veto this bill so that more people can continue to vote. 

Marches/events/webinars/Tweetstorms to attend/organize 

Reading/Watching 

1.      Kansas Supreme Court Rules State Constitution Protects Right to Abortion -   https://www.npr.org/2019/04/26/717449336/kansas-supreme-court-rules-state-constitution-protects-right-to-abortion 

2.      Why Aren’t Women Polling Better? The Misogynistic Millstone Around America’s Neck - https://www.newsandguts.com/misogyny-is-alive-and-unwell-in-the-presidential-race/ 

3.      Former Homeland Security chief Kirstjen Nielsen was worried about Russia meddling in the 2020 election, but was reportedly warned not to bring the issue up to Trump - https://www.businessinsider.com/mulvaney-kirstjen-nielsen-trump-russia-interference-2020-election-report-2019-4 

 
4/26/19   


There will be no Rogan’s List today due to health reasons.   
We all need to take care of ourselves.   
See you on Monday! 

4/24/19 


Contact Federal Government Officials




Fax legislators for free:

Or use Resistbot:  https://resist.bot/

Or use StampsLicked to have messages hand-delivered to our own legislators:  https://stampslicked.org/


  
1.       IMPEACHMENT: While the Mueller Report, even in its redacted version, has revealed areas where the president likely obstructed justice, Democrats are divided on whether to begin impeachment proceedings against Trump. https://www.npr.org/2019/04/23/716247955/more-democrats-call-for-impeachment-proceedings-against-president-trump Good arguments have been raised on both sides of the issue, with those in favor of impeachment arguing that the moral imperative and the need to save our democracy demands it, and those against impeachment worrying about how this will play out strategically for Democrats in the 2020 election, especially because it is likely that even if the House impeaches Trump he will be acquitted by the Republican Senate. Let’s change the messaging by telling our Democratic MoCs to continue to publically call out Republicans who are putting party over country and protecting a corrupt president, and let’s tell our Republican MoCs that it’s their ethical duty to stop enabling Trump and join with Democrats in preserving our democracy. For talking points, we can learn more about Trump’s impeachable offenses here.

2.       FINANCIAL OVERSIGHT: Congresswoman Maxine Waters has taken an aggressive oversight role as chair of the House Financial Services Committee, and her efforts have been a factor in the Wells Fargo CEO’s resignation and Bank of America’s decision to increase minimum wage to $20/hour by 2021. https://thehill.com/opinion/finance/440185-maxine-waters-is-the-wall-street-sheriff-the-people-deserve Let’s thank Congresswoman Waters (202-225-2201) and ask our own Democratic MoCs to call on their Committee Chairs to replicate Congresswoman Waters’ efforts in engaging in strong oversight, which is especially needed to counteract the administration’s tendencies toward deregulation.
           
3.       OFFSHORE DRILLING:  Public comment deadline is midnight this Friday, April 25.   This proposed change concerns both coasts through revision to the Coastal Zone Management Act. Trump is quietly laying the groundwork to weaken a decades-old federal law that empowers California and other states to slow and even stop offshore development in federal waters. It is a move to support the fossil fuel industry at the expense of the environment.   https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/apr/18/offshore-drilling-trump-administration-safety-oil-spills   ID: NOAA-NOS-2018-0107-0001. Let’s read it and comment here:  https://www.regulations.gov/document?D=NOAA-NOS-2018-0107-0001 .

4.       IMMIGRATION:  Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) recently visited the dangerously overcrowded “icebox” where border crossers stay until they are turned over to ICC and shared his findings: https://www.chicagotribune.com/news/opinion/commentary/ct-perspec-immigration-ice-detention-centers-border-patrol-durbin-20190418-story.html  Let’s ask our MoCs what they are doing to address this particularly inhumane portion of the process. 

5.       UNITED NATIONS: Despite intensified white supremacist terrorism and hate speech in the US but perfectly in keeping with his continuing rejection of international cooperation, Trump has neither renewed nor replaced human rights lawyer Gay McDougall, our current member of the U.N. Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, leaving the US seat empty and, according to an unidentified State Department official, "[cementing] the narrative that the Americans just don’t care about these kinds of things anymore.": https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/438795-trump-blocked-renomination-of-obama-era-un-racism-official-wont-pick  Let’s make sure the White House knows this narrative is false and that we want representation on this committee.

6.       IMMIGRATION:  DETAINED CHILDREN:  “The Homestead shelter [in Florida] s the only for-profit child detention center in the country, as well as the largest in the nation. According to HHS, as of earlier this month, the average daily cost to care for one child at an influx facility like Homestead is approximately $775 per day. The average daily cost at a regular, non-temporary shelter, is about $256 per day, per child. . .As the only temporary emergency shelter in the country, the Homestead center is exempt from federal regulations limiting how long authorities can hold migrant children, which normally is 20 days.”  Yet, instead of being closed as protesters would like, the facility is adding children.  https://www.miamiherald.com/news/local/immigration/article229437719.html  Let’s tell our MoCs that no facility should be working outside the law and most certainly not making money off these unaccompanied children.  Then, let’s sign this asking the facility to be closed:  https://actionnetwork.org/petitions/sign-the-petition-close-the-homestead-child-detention-center 

Election/Voting

1.    NEW POSTCARDING CAMPAIGN: Postcards To Voters Campaign 156: Melanie Hughes for Allen TX City Council. Let's help get out the Democratic vote for this Saturday, May 4 election by requesting 5 addresses today.

2.    ATTN: POSTCARDS TO VOTERS VOLUNTEERS:  If we currently request addresses via text we can help the organization save money by requesting addresses from "Facebook Abby" instead of via Text Abby. Each text costs money while the Facebook version uses Facebook Messenger at no cost to Postcards To Voters.  If we can, let's make the switch. We can get started with Facebook Abby here and even follow Facebook Abby on Facebook.   Let's request 5 addresses for the current campaign from Facebook Abby.

3.       NC: SPECIAL PRIMARY ELECTION FOR THE 3RD CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT:  A special election has been called to fill this Congressional seat following the death of Rep. Walter Jones (R) in February. https://ballotpedia.org/North_Carolina%27s_3rd_Congressional_District_special_election,_2019  The primary is scheduled for April 30, 2019. Six Democrats are on the ballot: Richard Bew https://www.richardbew.com/ , Gregory Humphrey https://gregoryhumphrey2019.com/ , Isaiah Johnson https://www.ike2019.com/ , Dana Outlaw https://www.outlawforcongress.com/ , Ernest Reeves https://www.ernestreeves.com/ , and Allen Thomas https://www.allenthomascongress.com/ . If we are in the 3rd Congressional District (Currituck, Camden, Pasquotank, Perquimans, Chowan, Tyrrell, Dare, Hyde, Beaufort, Pamlico, Carteret, Pitt, Craven, Onslow, Jones, Lenoir, and Greene), lets check out these candidates and make sure that we vote! Voter assistance here:   https://www.voteriders.org/ufaqs/north-carolina-voter-id-information/

4.       WI: SPECIAL ELECTION FOR WISCONSIN STATE ASSEMBLY DISTRICT 64: A special election has been called to fill this state assembly seat that was vacated when Assemblyman Peter Barca (D) was appointed to the state Department of Revenue. The election is scheduled for  April 30, 2019. https://ballotpedia.org/Wisconsin_State_Assembly_District_64   Democrat Tip McGuire https://www.tip4wi.com/  is running against Republican Mark Stalker. If we are in the greater Kenosha-Somers-Mt. Pleasant-Elmwood Park-Racine area in the 64th District, let’s be sure to vote for Tip McGuire on April 30! Voter assistance here: https://www.voteriders.org/ufaqs/wisconsin-voter-id-information/

5.       TX: GENERAL ELECTIONS ACROSS THE STATE MAY 4, 2019: There are elections happening throughout the state on May 4.   https://ballotpedia.org/Elections_calendar#Upcoming_election_dates  Let’s this sample ballot lookup tool to check to see if we have an election coming up in Texas: https://ballotpedia.org/Sample_Ballot_Lookup , and let’s sign up to receive election reminders and other voter assistance here: https://turbovote.org/ . And let’s vote!

Other Actions

1.        INTROVERT ACTIVISTS:  A helpful Ted Talk for introverts, by an introvert. “How Can Introverts Be Activists Too?”  https://www.npr.org/2019/04/12/711196501/sarah-corbett-how-can-introverts-be-activists-too  Let’s watch and listen to this, then check out the speaker’s outlet, The Craftivist Collective:  https://craftivist-collective.com/

2.       VOTER ENGAGEMENT:  Vote Forward makes it easy for us to send letters to encourage voter registration and to remind voters to go to the polls. They have three campaigns going on right now—to register likely Democratic voters in GA, to get out the vote in a May 21, 2019, special election in PA’s 12th Congressional district, and to get out the vote in an April 30, 2019, special election in WI’s 64th State Assembly district. Let’s visit their website, https://votefwd.org/, sign up, and start sending letters. No time to send letters right now? Consider a donation. Every dollar allows Vote Forward to purchase about 55 addresses. https://secure.actblue.com/donate/voteforward 

3.       RESOURCE FOR EXPLORING THE MUELLER REPORT: The day after the report was released, folks at Axios took the entire document and coded it for over 400 distinct topics (everything from names to institutions to "Miss Universe Pageant," believe it or not). We can read the redacted report in its entirely AND quickly pull up searches for these topics in this great interactive resource, here: https://www.axios.com/explore-a-detailed-version-of-the-mueller-report-5f7cab5b-9c53-46bc-abaa-bd6b7b3e6d66.html

4.       TIMELINE OF 2016 RUSSIAN ELECTION INTERFERENCE EVENTS:  If we are trying to keep track of what happened when in Russian attempts to influence the 2016 elections, we can check out  PBS Newshour’s  Russia Timeline, described as, “ a tool aimed at understanding the growing number of dots and where they connect.” We can read  PBS Newshour’s  Russia Timeline explanation and guide here:  https://www.pbs.org/newshour/features/russia-timeline/  We can read the spreadsheet here:  https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1utamO_EzX9VMyTKqWGF4x2upqohYCRYIdzyrx6YEyyk

5.       VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN ACT:  Even as the NRA is encouraging the Senate to oppose the 2019 reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act, passed by the House with a clause depriving convicted stalkers and those with restraining orders against them from buying guns: https://www.latimes.com/politics/la-na-pol-congress-house-violence-against-women-act-20190404-story.html --the case of Nicole Addimando is finally receiving attention.  After a decade of physical and emotional abuse, Addimando killed her partner in 2017 in order to protect herself and her young children and was convicted of second-degree murder; her bail was set at $300,000 cash or $600,000 bond (not far from Harvey Weinstein's), and she was represented by a public defender so compromised that the judge ultimately removed him. To support the struggle to pay Addimando’s staggering legal fees: https://fundrazr.com/WeStandWithNikki  To learn more about the criminalization of survivors of domestic, sexual, and other forms of gender violence: https://survivedandpunished.org  To join the fight to end money bail, let’s check out https://chicagobond.org, https://brooklynbailfund.org, or https://massbailfund.org). And, finally, here’s law professor Leigh Goodmark’s  critique of the VAWA, which enables us to think about the real-life effects of the VAWA’s emphasis on criminalization: https://theconversation.com/the-violence-against-women-act-is-unlikely-to-reduce-intimate-partner-violence-heres-why-103734

6.       CAMPAIGN HELP:  We are always looking for ways to help the campaigns we are involved in do better at a good to low (or no!) cost.  Let’s check these out:  Mapping can help campaign and canvassing. Two free apps to look at:  https://thedemlabs.org/2019/03/19/two-free-mapping-apps-to-better-target-campaigns/and an app to coordinate canvassers not using the Voter File:  https://thedemlabs.org/2018/05/17/knock-knock-whos-there/

State Actions

1.       ALL:  STATE ELECTIONS 2020: The 2020 election is coming fast, and with so many important races at the state level, it can be hard to know how to best use our energy and money to get progressive legislators elected. One organization, Future Now, has both a record of success and the organizational capacity and vision to mount a coordinated, nationwide network of campaigns. Even better is Future Now's commitment to developing model legislation to help state legislators craft laws that fulfill substantive progressive goals aligned with the larger national agenda (https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2019/04/future-now-democrats-2020-state-legislatures/587314/). Let's have a look at Future Now's pledge for would-be legislators (https://www.futurenow.org/pledge) and, if it embodies the kind of legislative approach we'd like to see, support it!

2.       KY: HUMAN TRAFFICKING: The 2019 Kentucky Derby is a little over a week away, and like the Super bowl, it is a prime opportunity for human traffickers to purchase or sell human beings for sex and/or labor. Attorney General Andy Beshear, state prosecutors, and victims advocates are asking that attendees keep an eye out for signs of human trafficking, and to speak up if we see something. Let's read through warning signs here, and call 877-KYSAFE1 if we see anything suspicious. Victims can also call the National Human Trafficking Hotline at 888-373-7888.

3.       ME: SUPPORT ENVIRONMENTAL LEGISLATION—The Green New Deal for Maine would set state environmental goals and foster economic growth. And the Act to Eliminate Single-use Plastic Carry-out Bags would ban most single-use plastic bags in Maine retail stores.   https://www.suitupmaine.org/legislature-roundup/#LD1282 Let’s contact our state legislators and ask them to co-sponsor the Green New Deal for Maine, LD 1282, and a ban on single-use plastic bags, LD 1532. https://www.maine.gov/portal/government/edemocracy/voter_lookup.php Bonus points if we sign up with Suit Up Maine: https://www.suitupmaine.org/

4.       MI: EDUCATION STANDARDS: Last year, a draft for new social studies standards was released, which would have cut references to gay rights, climate change, Roe v. Wade, and downplayed the historic role of the NAACP, among other changes. After public outcry and numerous meetings with the public, the Michigan Department of Education has released a revised draft, though now it is receiving blowback from a conservative member of the Board of Education  (https://bit.ly/2IMowTr). Let's read through the proposed standards, then be sure to leave a comment about the new standards, and if possible, show up to one of the public meetings that will be held throughout the state:  https://www.michigan.gov/mde/0,4615,7-140-28753_64839_65510-339831--,00.html

Marches/events/webinars/Tweetstorms to attend/organize

1.       IMPEACHMENT TWITTERSTORM TODAY:  Trump wants nothing more than all talk of  impeachment to go away, but with the Mueller Report raising at least ten possible counts of Presidential obstruction of justice, he needs to held accountable. As Charles Blow says in this New York Times article, “An impeachment vote in the House has, to this point, been the strongest rebuke America is willing to give a president. I can think of no president who has earned this rebuke more than the current one.”    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/21/opinion/impeach-donald-trump.html   To raise  awareness of this important issues, we can join Action Together Network and The Blue Wave Report’s  Impeachment Twitter storm, TODAY from 8-9pm EST. When we click this link, we will get access to prewritten tweets we can send out with just a few clicks:  https://www.facebook.com/events/406620280159949/

Reading/Watching

1.        We Seem to be Ignoring the Women Running for President -  https://thehill.com/opinion/campaign/439045-we-seem-to-be-ignoring-the-women-running-for-president

2.       With a Green New Deal, Here’s What the World Could Look Like for the Next Generation - https://theintercept.com/2018/12/05/green-new-deal-proposal-impacts/

3.       There’s a Bigger Prize Than Impeachment: Keeping Trump in office will destroy the Republican Party - https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/22/opinion/theres-a-bigger-prize-than-impeachment.html

4.       Native American activists: The fire at Notre Dame is devastating. So is the destruction of our sacred lands. -  https://www.vox.com/identities/2019/4/17/18412307/notre-dame-native-american-activists-sacred-lands