Actions & Links 5/23/17

Part 1: What Can We Do Now?
1.  By tomorrow: Phone bank for Rob Quist in the May 25th Montana special election.

2.  By Friday:  Get educated about the cruelest cuts in the Trump budget.

3.  By Sunday: Tell the Department of Education America should keep its promise of student loan forgiveness for public servants.

Part 2: Mixed Media
1.  Egregious anti-democracy action you probably haven’t heard of: More state bills attacking the power of the courts.

2.  Easy to forward clip to family and friends:  Vox sums up the Fox News playbook on Trump scandals

3.  Coward of the week award: Newt Gingrich, spreading baseless conspiracy theories about a murdered DNC staffer

4.  Hero of the week award: Alabama lawmakers set to restore voting rights for thousands of people.

5.  Here’s your pro-democracy, pro-America pump-up song of the week: A throwback, suddenly relevant for some reason

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Actions & Links 5/16/17

Part 1: What Can We Do Now?

  1. By tomorrow: Independent Counsel. 20 state Attorneys General have written to DOJ asking for an independent prosecutor. Either thank yours, or ask why he or she hasn’t signed on.  Contact info here.
  2. By Friday: Send a postcard.  There’s a special election in South Carolina, and grassroots groups are working on sending handwritten postcards to help GOTV.  Email Postcards@TonytheDemocrat.org to figure out how to help.
  3. By Sunday: Oh fine just watch SNL. Here’s the cold open.

 

Part 2: Mixed Media

  1. Egregious anti-democracy action you probably haven’t heard of: Retrospective on Wisconsin’s Voter ID law.
  2. Easy to forward clip to family and friends: Here’s Representative MacArthur’s most recent town hall.
  3. Coward of the week award: Sean Spicer, because you can’t top hiding in among the bushes.
  4. Hero of the week award: Andy McCabe, who got 24 hours to prep for his first Senate hearing, and refused to toe the line the White House clearly wanted.
  5. Here’s your pro-democracy, pro-America pump-up song of the week: White House’s view of the Comey fiasco?

 

Actions & Links 5/9/17

“It bends because we bend it. Because we put our hand on that arc and we move it in the direction of justice.” – Barack Obama on Martin Luther King’s “arc of justice.”

Republicans may have dealt a blow to Obamacare this week, but the battle’s far from over. We’re deviating from our usual format this week for a special edition on healthcare.

Part 1: Healthcare
Cowards of the week: House Republicans who voted to take away healthcare from millions of Americans with pre-existing conditions or without means to pay higher premiums. Special shout-out to Raul Labrador, who claimed, “Nobody dies because they don’t have access to heathcare.”

Consequences of the healthcare vote: The bill would eliminate protections for those with pre-existing conditions and would gut Medicaid. Read Vox’s explainer.

Battle repeal in the Senate: Certain “moderate” Republicans are nervous about the consequences of gutting protections for pre-existing conditions – Senators like Susan Collins of Maine, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and Bill Cassidy of Louisiana will be key. Let them know you’re paying attention.

The war for 2018: Donations spiked to challenge Republicans in the House in the 24 hours after the vote. Vulnerable Senators will be paying attention. Pile on and pick a swing district to be active in.

Part 2: Mixed Media
Hero of the week award: If you come at Sally Yates, you best be ready. The former acting Attorney General schools Ted Cruz and John Cornyn in a congressional hearing on Russian interference.

Your pro-democracy, pro-America pump-up song of the week: Bachman Turner Overdrive’s “You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet”. As a worthwhile bonus, Obama’s Profiles in Courage Award acceptance speech.

Part 3: Not Healthcare
John Oliver and Net Neutrality are back: Wheeler may not have turned out to be a dingo, but Ajit Pai is coming after net neutrality nonetheless. Add a comment for the FCC by going to www.gofccyourself.com and clicking “express.”

Also: Congratulations to France and Emmanuel Macron for turning back the far-right tide this week.

Actions & Links 5/2/17

There once was a rich bloke who had
Life easy since he was a lad.
He sat in his quarters,
And said to reporters,
My job is too hard and I’m sad.

Part 1: What Can We Do Now?

  1. By tomorrow: Help Mr. Rogers. With public media under attack again, The Beautiful Day campaign is asking people to celebrate Fred Rogers by sending them a pic in your favorite sweater with your own personal PBS story.
  2. By Friday: WTF Boston Globe?  They sent out this tweet (since deleted.) Ask digital managing editor Kathleen Kingsbury to keep a tighter handle on her twitter feed.
  3. By Sunday: Call the Voice. The White House has established a special hotline for people to call to report any encounters with illegal aliens.  Please call and leave a nice, long message.  The number is 1-855-48-VOICE.  I’d suggest reading from the War of the Worlds, but it’s up to you.

 

Part 2: Mixed Media

  1. Egregious anti-democracy action you probably haven’t heard of: White House Chief of Staff says the president is looking at a constitutional amendment to end freedom of the press.
  2. Easy to forward clip to family and friends: Donald Trump thinks the presidency is hard.
  3. Coward of the week award: Scott Walker, who won’t remove a county sheriff after an inmate in his care died from dehydration – the sheriff denied him water for SEVEN DAYS.
  4. Hero of the week award: This year’s WHCD was a thankless task, especially given the president didn’t even show. Thanks Hasan Minhaj for telling the truth.
  5. Here’s your pro-democracy, pro-America pump-up song of the week: More Springsteen.

 

Actions & Links 4/18/17

Hey friends – who was the last President to make it through 100 days without a single piece of major legislation passed?  Yea, I don’t know either.  Let’s put this POTUS in that category.

Part 1: What Can We Do Now?

  1. By tomorrow: Help Ossoff. Repeating from last week: Jon Ossoff, a Democrat, is making waves with his run in the Republican Georgia 6th.  The special election is Tuesday, April 18th.  Consider helping him out.
  2. By Friday: Share your story with CAP. The Center for American Progress is collecting stories of successful resistance activities. If you’ve ever helped in any way (and if you haven’t, why are you still reading?), submit your story here.
  3. By Sunday: Go to a town hall. Congress is in recess, so go to a town hall. Find them here.

 

Part 2: Mixed Media

  1. Egregious anti-democracy action you probably haven’t heard of: Let’s actually discuss why we dropped a gigantic bomb this week.
  2. Easy to forward clip to family and friends: The Chinese president convinces our master negotiator he’s totally wrong in only ten minutes.
  3. Coward of the week award: Representative Markwayne Mullin, who said that the taxpayers don’t pay his salary. He, in fact, literally said, “I pay for myself.” Sure you do.  Sure.
  4. Hero of the week award: David Fahrenthold, who justly won a Pulitzer for his uncompromising reporting on Trump.
  5. Here’s your pro-democracy, pro-America pump-up song of the week: Getting angrier.  Here’s Patti Smith.

 

 

Actions & Links 4/11/17

I have a friend in a deep red state, who’s been fighting extremely hard – and successfully – to push through change on city councils and the state house.  When I asked him how to not succumb to despair, he responded “winning.”  Let’s keep up the fight.

Part 1: What Can We Do Now?

  1. By tomorrow: Enjoy Recess. CAP just put out a recess toolkit.  Pick a few items from it and help make sure your legislators here from you.
  2. By Friday: Georgia 6th Special Election. Jon Ossoff, a Democrat, is making waves with his run in the heavily Republican Georgia 6th. The special election is Tuesday, April 18th.  Consider helping him out.
  3. By Sunday: Thank the LA Times. Out on the west coast, the LA Times has kept up the pressure on Trump with a series of in-depth analyses. Send Editor-in-Chief Davan Maharaj a note supporting their efforts.

 

Part 2: Mixed Media

  1. Egregious anti-democracy action you probably haven’t heard of: This is what happens when money = speech.
  2. Easy to forward clip to family and friends: The Syria strike makes it painfully obvious how many Republicans in Congress are putting party before country, using their own words from when they criticized President Obama. Here’s our long-time Coward, Jason Chaffetz.
  3. Coward of the week award: Senator John McCain, who said eliminating the filibuster was a “bad day for democracy,” and then voted for it anyway.
  4. Hero of the week award: Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, who continues to stand up for us with straightforward honesty.
  5. Here’s your pro-democracy, pro-America pump-up song of the week: In support of Jon Ossoff.

Actions & Links 3/14/17

Shout out to those who participated in the ‘Day Without a Woman’ rally. Keep fighting the good fight and have fun doing it.

Part 1: What Can We Do Now?
1.  By tomorrow: Thank John McCain for continuing to hammer Trump on his wiretapping claims. Contact his Washington office (202.224.2235), as he sits on the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, which can push for investigation.

2.  By Friday: Teen Vogue is doing great resistance work, but don’t call it surprising. For the low, low price of $10 a year, you can support Teen Vogue’s leadership.

3.  By Sunday: Start following the 2017 special elections. You don’t need to wait until 2018 to start rebalancing our democracy. Check out the slate of 2017 special elections and choose one to participate in.

Part 2: Mixed Media
1.  Egregious anti-democracy action you probably haven’t heard of: Hundreds of Trump operatives have quietly been installed at various levels of government, from ProPublica

2. Easy to forward clip to family and friends: Don’t sleep on media distribution. A Facebook policy exec talks about countering extremism and hate speech on social media.

3.  Coward of the week award: Jason Chaffetz continues his strong performance in this category, this week punching down at Americans who can’t afford healthcare.

4.  Hero of the week award: Preet Bharara, one of 46 Obama-era prosecutors who were ousted this week, forced Trump to fire him as a protest against the administration’s continued efforts to sow chaos.

5.  Here’s your pro-democracy, pro-America pump-up song of the week: An ode to immigrants from the Hamilton mixtape

Actions & Links 3/7/17

Добро пожаловать товарищей на другой дополнение нашего письма. Мы ценим вашу помощь на родине.
 
Part 1: What Can We Do Now?
1.  By tomorrow: Let’s learn more Russian. The media has been rightly focused on uncovering evidence of the Trump network’s deep ties with Russia. Send NYTimes (Liz Spayd: public@nytimes.com) and WaPo (national@washpost.com) a note encouraging them to keep it up.

2.  By Friday: Call out The Fix. After Trump’s speech on Tuesday, many commentators fell over themselves to christen him as “presidential” because he was able to read off a teleprompter for a few minutes. WaPo’s political blog was one of the worst: here and here. Email the editors, Aaron Blake and Chris Cillizza, and ask them to be a bit more restrained.      

3.  By Sunday: Keep up pressure on Breitbart. Sleeping Giants is continuing their action to pressure advertisers to block Breitbart from their Google ad buys. Offer them a helping hand here.
                             
Part 2: Mixed Media
 1.  Egregious anti-democracy action you probably haven’t heard of: Georgia GOP trying to re-gerrymander their already heavily gerrymandered state house map.

2. Easy to forward clip to family and friends:  Ben Sasse’s tweet.

3.  Coward of the week award: Paul Ryan who appears to have hidden the Obamacare replacement bill.  

4.  Hero of the week award: These guys, a group of Muslims raising funds to repair damaged Jewish cemeteries.

5.  Here’s your pro-democracy, pro-America pump-up song of the week: A soulful rendition of Paul Ryan’s internal monologue.

Actions & Links 2/28/17

A week with some positive news here:  The Delaware Senate stays blue, preserving one of the six Democratic trifectas and the Action Alliance launches our new website at https://www.actionalliance.co/ with more ways to fight back and support what we believe in.

Part 1: What Can We Do Now?

1.  By tomorrow: Help Out Fox. Fox News is running a poll asking how Americans rate President Trump so far. Share your thoughts here.

2.  By Friday: Keep Protests Legal. Realizing they’ve lost the support of the people, 18 states are trying to make it harder or outright illegal to protest.  If you live in one of these states, call your reps (find them here.)

3.  By Sunday: Call Reuters. Last week, the White House barred CNN, the NY Times, and others from a press gaggle. In response, Time and the AP boycotted the briefing and even Bloomberg and the WSJ said they won’t participate in the future. Call Reuters (646-223-4000) and ask them to stand up for the free press by boycotting future exclusionary briefings.

Part 2: Mixed Media

1.  Egregious anti-democracy action you probably haven’t heard of: A leaked report shows how Republican plans to “fix” the ACA would result in 50% of those who benefit from it losing their insurance.

2. Easy to forward clip to family and friends:  Here’s a round-up of Republican legislators hearing from their engaged constituents, and those that are too scared to show up.

3. Coward of the week award: Tucker Carlson who, when he couldn’t actually get a protest organizer to appear to debate him, got an actor to play one on his show!
4.  Hero of the week award: Toby Smith, the 7-year-old who trounced Tom Cotton at his town hall. Watch here.

5. Here’s your pro-democracy, pro-America pump-up song of the week: A modern remake of Tippecanoe and Tyler Too, the campaign song of the shortest-lived Presidential term in US history. Harrison stays at Number 1, let’s shoot for Number 2 (we need to beat Garfield’s 199 days.)

Actions & Links 2/21/17

We’re thrilled to announce that America Will Be is a founding member of the Action Alliance, a network bringing together over 60 civic engagement and resistance-focused groups throughout the country. Over the next few months, expect to see roll-outs of collaboration and new resources. To start, we are coordinating to Signal Boost one action item per week – by taking part in that item, you can join tens of thousands across the country on a single action point.

Part 1: What Can We Do Now?

  1. By tomorrow: Investigate #TrumpRussia (Signal Boost). Lob in a call to your Representative and both Senators urging them to support a Select Committee investigation into Russia. Below is a script you can use.
  2. By Friday: Support Stephanie. Stephanie Hansen is an environmental attorney running for Delaware State Senate. If she loses, the chamber flips to Republican control, and the last time, Dems only won the seat by 267 votes.  Consider helping with funds or time.
  3. By Sunday: Thank Pete Alexander at NBC. When Donald Trump blatantly lied about the size of his electoral college victory, for once, a reporter actually kept pressing him on it. Give him some Twitter likes.

 

Part 2: Mixed Media

  1. Egregious anti-democracy action you probably haven’t heard of: DHS’s new guidelines on immigrants confer sweeping powers on border guards.  WaPo reports here.
  2. Easy to forward clip to family and friends: Here’s a letter from a county GOP chairman saying that equal pay for women is bad because if “businesses are forced to pay women the same as male earnings, that means they will have to reduce the pay for the men they employ.” Hello, 2017.
  3. Coward of the week award: Representative Chaffetz returns to the list, this time for seeking to start an investigation of . . . Hillary Clinton’s e-mails. It would be comically hilarious if the people he’s not investigating weren’t running a nuclear-armed superpower.
  4. Hero of the week award: Jonathan Rodden, for digging into the details that show “Red America” isn’t nearly as monolithic as it looks. Read the article here.
  5. Here’s your pro-democracy, pro-America pump-up song of the week: World, Hold On!

PS – Here’s a potential script for calling your representatives on Russia:

My name is [your name], and I’m a constituent of [rep’s name]. I’m calling today to ask for [representative’s] support for an independent, bipartisan investigation into President Trump’s ties to Russia and Russia’s interference in our election. What is [rep’s] position on this?  I’m asking [rep] to support this investigation and to make an immediate public statement on the matter.