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ACTIONS FOR THE WEEK OF
Monday 3/19/2018 – Friday 3/23/2018
1. State Department: Mike Pompeo
Trump has nominated Mike Pompeo, an Islamophobic, pro-torture, climate-denying war hawk, to replace Rex Tillerson to head the State Department. Pompeo has been outspoken in his opposition to the Iran Deal, a historic agreement between the United States, Iran, China, France, Germany, Russia and the United Kingdom that keeps Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons, since its initial negotiations in 2015. As the former president of an oilfield production business closely affiliated with Koch Industries, Pompeo praised the U.S. withdrawal from the Paris climate accord. Pompeo has also been the number one recipient of Koch Brothers money since he was first elected in the Tea Party wave of 2010.
Sample Script: I’m calling from [zip code] to ask Senator Feinstein/Harris to vote No on the confirmation of Mike Pompeo as Secretary of State. Mr. Pompeo has expressed an eagerness for war with Iran, and has been an enthusiastic supporter of torture and an opponent of the Paris accords. His appointment will seriously undermine the United States’ position in the world.
2. CIA: Gina Haspel
Trump’s nominee to replace Mike Pompeo as head of the CIA oversaw a “black site” prison. Christopher Anders, deputy director of the American Civil Liberties Union’s Washington legislative office, claims Gina Haspel “was up to her eyeballs in torture.” He has called for the CIA to declassify her torture record before the Senate considers her nomination. John McCain has joined him, saying “Ms. Haspel needs to explain the nature and extent of her involvement in the CIA’s interrogation program during the confirmation process”.
Sample Script: I’m calling from [zip code] to urge Senator Feinstein/Harris to insist that a full accounting of Gina Haspel’s role in running a CIA “black site” prison where torture was practiced be publicly released and debated before there is any Senate vote to confirm her.
3. Save the Birds and the Bees: Ban Neonics
The Environmental Protection Agency has extended the public comment period for people to weigh in on the use of neonicotinoid, the pesticide that is driving bees to extinction. Neonics act as a deadly nerve agent on bees, damaging their brains and crippling their ability to learn, remember and navigate. And it’s not just bees: Research shows that neonics harm birds’ navigation abilities as well, and that near-constant neonic exposure in contaminated water can cause lasting damage to aquatic ecosystems.
Sample Written Script: Neonics aren’t worth all of the potential damage to bees, birds, and aquatic animals. The chemicals don’t appear to boost crop yields for farmers who use them. According to a 2017 paper from Purdue University, researchers found “no benefit of the insecticidal seed treatments in terms of crop yield” to US corn growers. A 2014 paper by EPA scientists and economists revealed that for US soybean farmers, “most usage of neonicotinoid seed treatments does not protect soybean yield any better than using no pest control.” Follow the lead of the EU and stop the use of these pesticides before it is too late – our lives and the future of our food supply depends on stopping the use of neonics.
4. Stop Using Religion as a Weapon to Endanger the Health of Women and LGBTQ People
Public comments are being solicited about new Health and Human Services rules that would allow greater latitude and strengthen protections for physicians and health care workers who choose to opt out of procedures that conflict with their personally held religious beliefs. These rules specifically target women’s reproductive freedoms and LGBTQ’s health care access, and use religion to promote discrimination.
Comment Page (due March 27)
Sample Written Script: Healthcare workers should not be able to use religious beliefs to discriminate against individuals and groups who need medical care. With this change, the HHS civil rights office would be empowered to further shield these workers and punish organizations that don’t allow expression of religious and moral objections. This would be a significant shift for the office, whose mission is to enforce federal civil rights and health care privacy laws. According to the Center for American Progress, 29% of transgender people reported that “a doctor or other health care provider refused to see them because of their actual or perceived gender identity.” Stop this bullying now.
5. Last Chance to Weigh In on the Omnibus Spending Bill
The omnibus spending bill must be passed by March 23 to avoid a government shutdown, and may be voted on in the House as early as this week. While the bill needs bipartisan support to pass, there are a number of poisonous riders attached to it. Many of the riders attack healthcare for women (including Planned Parenthood) and LGBTQ individuals, eighty riders would de-regulate environmental protections and others would erode the separation of church and state while expanding the role of dark money into our elections.
Sample Script: I’m calling from [zip code] to urge Senator Feinstein/Harris / Rep. Carbajal to reject all riders to the omnibus spending bill that would threaten the health and rights of women and LGBTQ people, that would de-regulate environmental protections, and that would increase the flow of dark money into our elections.
The blue wave continues. Despite a torrent of Republican money, a GOP gerrymandered district, and Trump’s personal intervention, Democrat Connor Lamb captured Pennsylvania’s 18th District, a congressional district that Donald Trump won by 20 points in 2016.
Hundreds of thousands of students this week walked out of their classrooms for 17 minutes to honor the 17 lives lost at Marjory Stoneman Douglas school, to protest the fact that the NRA has bought so many of our nation’s representatives, and to say that they will not stop until we end gun violence in our country.
James Schwab, former San Francisco spokesman for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), resigned in response to “false” and “misleading” remarks made by Attorney General Jeff Sessions and acting ICE Director Thomas Homan. Stating that he “didn’t want to perpetuate misleading facts,” Schwab also noted angrily that it was wrong to characterize the entire immigrant population as “dangerous criminals on the street” as Sessions and Homan sought to do, calling that description “just wrong.”
Washington’s state legislature passed 3 voting-rights bills to allow automatic and same-day voter registration and pre-registration for 16- and 17-year-olds. And, while they were at it, the legislature also passed a bill protecting LGBTQ youth from “conversion therapy”.
When they go low… Eryn Gilchrist decided to run against previously unopposed GOP candidate Leslie Gibson after he called an 18 year old Parkland shooting survivor a “skinhead lesbian”. Gibson has now decided to drop out of the race.
Medicare caps on occupational, physical and speech language therapy have been lifted.
CALL YOUR REPS DAILY!
Senator Dianne Feinstein
Washington, DC: (202) 224-3841
San Francisco: (415) 393-0707
Los Angeles: (310) 914-7300
San Diego: (619) 231-9712
Fresno: (559) 485-7430
FAX: 202 228 3954
Senator Kamala Harris
Washington, DC: (202) 224-3553
Sacramento: (916) 448-2787
Fresno: (559) 497-5109
Los Angeles: (213) 894-5000
San Francisco: (415) 355-9041
San Diego: (619) 239-3884
Congressman Salud Carbajal
Santa Barbara: (805) 730-1710
San Luis Obispo: (805) 546-8348
Washington, DC: (202) 225-3601
Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson
Sacramento: (916) 651-4019
Santa Barbara: (805) 965-0862
Oxnard: (805) 988-1940
Assemblywoman Monique Limon
Sacramento: (916) 319-2037
Santa Barbara: (805) 564-1649
Ventura: (805) 641-3700
Program your representative’s local AND DC phone numbers into your phone. Republicans outnumber Democrats in calling 4-1, and 11-1 on hot button issues. If you are still grappling with how Obama’s administration were not able to get anything done, this is how they did it. We MUST constantly call and continually exert pressure. If you can’t manage daily, pick a day, mark it recurring on your calendar, and call weekly.
- Call your senators about an issue of concern EVERY DAY.
- Always provide your ZIP CODE,
- Call about ONE subject only, per call.
- Call once per day, or multiple times per day with one ask for each call.
- Leave a message if you can’t speak to a person.
- If you can’t get through, try again later.
Failing that, DO send an email, one ask per email. Both Feinstein and Harris’ offices have said they tally emails as well as phone calls.
CALL YOUR SENATORS DAILY (on-going) Senate confirmation hearings are daily for cabinet appointees. Check C-span on TV, or C-Span Live Stream online, for live hearings. Demand appropriate vetting of appointees.
Here is a link to a Political Appointee Tracker for over 600 appointees.
Here is Full Schedule of Cabinet Appointee Hearings and what to look for. (You will have to scroll way down as it is in chronological order)
Here is a guide for how the senate committe hearing process works, and what stage of the process nominees are in.
Please take a moment to fill out this online form after making your calls if you can, to help track your senator’s response.
In the House of Representatives, Congress continues to debate funding and pass bills. It is helpful for our Representatives to hear a large outpouring of support from his constituents. Our Representatives become bolder when they hear from a lot of us.
To see what is happening on the floor throughout each day, bookmark the Office of the Clerk. This site also has a live video stream of floor proceedings, and guides about how the legislative process works. It’s an amazing resource.
Govtrack is a website that makes it easy to track certain legislation, you may sign up for alerts. It also can help you find your representative. Their twitter account @govtrack posts all the legislation as it passes, live. congress.gov is an incredibly useful resource, which has every position on every bill.
Indivisible, MoveOn and Working Families Party are joining in #ResistTrumpTuesdays. Each Tuesday, actions will be taken for the first 100 days of the new administration. These actions normally involve IN-PERSON VISITS to representative’s offices. Please join our facebook group, follow us on twitter, and/or sign up for our newsletter for these events!
GRAB YOUR WALLET
#GrabYourWallet was a movement that began during the election, started by Shannon Coulter. The public cannot know the extent of the Trump family’s conflicts of interest, and it’s up to each consumer to decide if they want to enrich the Trump family by buying their products and supporting businesses that sell Trump family products. A constantly updated list of companies may be found here: https://grabyourwallet.org/. When boycotting, be sure to share your decision on twitter, using the hash tag, #GrabYourWallet. Nordstrom is among the companies recently boycotted. Following pressure from Nordstrom customers who boycotted and wrote impassioned letters to the company, Nordstrom announced they are dropping all Trump family products. Consider writing each company to let them know you will not shop with them as long as they continue to carry Trump product lines.
On Inauguration day, former President Obama’s twitter accounts were archived. If you were following @WhiteHouse @POTUS @FLOTUS @VP or other Obama administration twitter accounts, you are now automatically following the Trump administration. These twitter accounts must be manually un-followed. Please also unfollow @realdonaldtrump. You can still read all these tweets from these sources without following them and bolstering their numbers.
If live you in California’s 24th Congressional District, and you have a personal story about how the ACA has helped you that you are willing to share, Rep. Salud Carbajal would like to hear it. Please go to his website to submit your story: https://carbajal.house.gov/share-your-aca-story