What to do this week of October 1, 2017
Action Checklist for Americans of Conscience
By Jen Hofmann
47 weeks down, 57 weeks to mid-term elections.
The intention of this weekly document is to make clear, hype-free suggestions for action backed by well-considered research for Americans who care about democracy and justice. Urgent actions are highlighted in yellow.
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I believe in equal rights for all Americans.
Action: Advocate for the economic rights of our poorest neighbors.
Call: Or write your 2 senators (lookup).
Script: Hi. I’m from [ZIP], calling about the Republican tax plan. I want to advocate for poor, hardworking Americans who need cuts more than corporations and people earning over $200,000 per year. Advantages like pass-throughs, estate tax breaks, and write-offs for charitable giving only benefit the most affluent. Please let [name] know I expect to see him/her support an ethical, fiscally-responsible tax plan that helps our struggling neighbors, not Trump Tower cronies. Thank you.
I believe in quality, affordable healthcare for all Americans.
Action: Spread the word that ACA health insurance open enrollment starts in 1 month. Since the president cut advertising budget by 90%, it’s up to us.
Share on Twitter: Retweet this image.
Action: Advocate for kids’ healthcare.
Call: All 3 MoCs (lookup).
Script: Hi. I’m from [ZIP] and am calling because funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program lapsed this Sunday, Oct 1 which risks leaving 9 million kids without coverage. Can you tell me what [name] is doing to quickly reauthorize CHIP funding and protect kids’ health?
I believe in a government led by people of integrity.
Action: Advocate for a clear, swift rebuke of the president’s comments regarding San Juan’s mayor.
Call: Or email all 3 MoCs (lookup).
Script: The president’s bullying of San Juan’s mayor, Carmen Yulín Cruz, on twitter is insensitive, antagonistic, and disgraceful, especially in light of the climbing death toll. I would like [name] to make a public statement condemning the president’s words and expressing support for our fellow citizens in Puerto Rico.
Action: Oppose cabinet members wasting taxpayer dollars on private jets.
Call: Or email your 3 MoCs (lookup).
Script: Hi. I’m from [ZIP] calling about cabinet members’ use of private jets. I was pleased that Sec. Price stepped down for abusing this privilege. It’s come to light that Zinke has spent $12,000 to travel through the Caribbean on an oil executive’s aircraft, and Pruitt’s use of private planes has cost over $58,000. What is [name] doing to stop public servants from wasting taxpayers’ hard-earned money?
I believe in a woman’s right to safe, affordable reproductive care.
Action: Oppose House bill reducing access to abortion to 20 weeks.
Call: Your 1 House rep (red or blue) this week. Two Dems support it.
Script: Hi. I’m calling because I oppose H.R. 36. Despite Republicans’ vision of a small federal government, this bill that invades the doctor-patient relationship, restricts women’s decisions, and violates Roe v. Wade. I would like [name] to vote no on H.R. 36 when it comes up for a vote this week. Thank you.
I believe in creating a healthy planet for future generations.
Action: Advocate for existing protections against the discharge of pesticides in waterways (h/t).
Call: Your 2 senators (lookup).
Script: Hi, I’m calling from [ZIP] about the H.R. 953, already passed in the House and now in the Senate for approval. Protecting waterways from the discharge of toxic materials is essential for pristine habitat, healthy oceans, and clean drinking water. It is not a regulatory burden. I would like [name] to vote no H.R. 953. Thank you.
I believe in the Constitutional rights of speech, assembly, and press.
Action: Oppose DHS’ proposed social media monitoring of immigrants and citizens.
Call: Or email your 3 MoCs (lookup).
Script: Hi. I’m from [ZIP], calling to express deep concern about the Department of Homeland Security’s proposed policy of monitoring social media of immigrants, their legal guardians, green-card holders, and naturalized citizens. This intrusive, anti-immigrant policy gives carte-blanche access to data that violates citizens’ 4th and 1st amendment rights. Evidence shows that it will not make our country safer. How is [name] opposing this overreach by DHS?
Comment by Oct 17: Write an original public comment on Regulations.gov especially opposing proposed changes 4 and 5 (regarding who is monitored and how).
I believe that open borders and a path to citizenship benefit America.
Action: Oppose border wall funding tied to Republican DACA fix.
Call: Your 2 senators this week.
Script: Hi. I’m from [ZIP] calling to oppose the Republican SUCCEED Act (S. 1852). I do not—nor will I ever—support any bill that includes funding for a border wall with Mexico. I would like [name] to co-sponsor and vote for the Dream Act (S. 1615) instead. Thanks.
I support the rights and sovereignty of indigenous people.
Action: Advocate for water protectors’ right to legal representation by Oct 2nd.
Script: Visit Water Protector Legal for scripts. Your email can help.
I believe I am my neighbor’s keeper.
Action: Support any of these agencies bringing urgent assistance to Puerto Rico.
- Puerto Rico Relief Fund
- Hurricane Maria Community Recovery and Relief Fund
- United for Puerto Rico (PR first lady’s fund)
Action: Oppose escalation with North Korea.
Call: Your three MoCs (lookup).
Script: Hi. I’m from [ZIP] and calling about relations with North Korea. Our president don’t seem interested in avoiding conflict. Can you tell me what [name] is doing to address this growing concern?
Deep breath innnnnnn… Deep breath ouuuuuuuut… We can do hard things together.
Acts of Gratitude
Get out your stamps, postcards, and sparkle markers for some gratitude mail.
Thank Sens. John McCain (R-AZ) and Ben Cardin (D-MD) for urging the president to stop dragging his feet and to enforce sanctions against Russia, Iran, and North Korea. Thank you for your bipartisan cooperation and leadership on this important issue.
Address (JM): 2201 East Camelback Road, Suite 115, Phoenix, AZ 85016
Address (BC): 100 S. Charles Street, Tower 1, Suite 1710, Baltimore, MD 21201
Thank Sens. Patty Murray (D-WA) and Lamar Alexander (R-TN) for continuing to work collaboratively on a bipartisan solution to shore up ACA. I appreciate your creativity, cooperation, and collegiality in finding solutions that work for Americans.
Address (PM): 402 E. Yakima Ave, Suite 420, Yakima, Washington 98901
Address (LA): 3322 West End Avenue, #120, Nashville, TN 37203
Thank Sens. Richard Burr (R-NC) and Mark Warner (D-VA) for holding Jared Kushner’s feet to the fire on his undisclosed email account. I appreciate your thoroughness and persistence in getting to the bottom of what happened in the 2016 elections, including the role the president’s son in law may have played.
Address (RB): 151 Patton Avenue, Suite 204, Asheville, NC 28801
Address (MW): 919 E. Main Street, Suite 630, Richmond, VA 23219
Thank OMB Dir. Mick Mulvaney for his memo reminding senior officials to honor their fiscal responsibility to taxpayers by choosing commercial travel over private charters—even when approved and within the law. I appreciate your respect for hardworking Americans.
Address: Office of Management and Budget, 725 17th Street NW, Washington, DC 20503
Thought-provoking, in-depth reading that’s worth your time.
- Russia social media chaos campaign continues in real time (NPR).
- A friend asked her about white privilege, she decided to be honest (YES Magazine).
- DHS will increase state elections officials’ security clearances to enable communication about future election breaches.
- Office of Management and Budget Director, Mick Mulvaney, reminded cabinet officials they’re using taxpayer money when they fly and to manage it wisely.
- Senate Democrats will force a vote on the Dream Act.
- Air Force General minces no words in defense of Black cadet candidate students.
- Two seats flip from red to blue in state special elections.
- Judge rules that Black Lives Matter—and other social movements—cannot be sued.
- Republican IL governor signs bill expanding abortion coverage in state insurance plans.
- Maryland eliminates mandatory sentences for drug dealers.
- Lionsgate uses its media to highlight blood-donation discrimination.
- YouTube demonetizes accounts linked to hate speech.
- NFL Players Association publicly supports its Muslim players.
- A NY pilot and paramedic flies to Puerto Rico to offer help and supplies.
- A sweeping study finds that decarceration is a better alternative to long-term incarceration.
- Together, Americans of Conscience (you!) have gotten the ACA registration dates in front of 27,000 people on Facebook, and
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