Monday 6.20 – 3 Fast Actions

It’s easy to forget things after a beautiful Juneteenth weekend, but bills, both good and bad, are now speeding through the CA state legislature to Newsom’s desk, and the deadline to comment on a badly-written regulation is rapidly approaching.

  • Action #1– stop private-equity-pirate-owned PG&E from turning us taxpayers into their cave of gold, while still leaving us exposed to the incredible danger from wildfires.
  • Action #2– stop a proposed federal regulation that would allow literal pay-to-play corruption.
  • Action #3 are bills to protect California residents from gun violence.

Program your phone to do this faster – an example of “HOW” and “WHY” are included at the bottom.

FAST Action #1! – Call your assemblymember and tell them to vote “NO” on SB 396 and SB 884, boondoggle bills for PG&E.

Minimal script: I’m calling from [zip code] and I want Assemblymember [____] to vote “NO” on SB 396 – Forestry. Instead of cutting down more than a million trees a year in an counterproductive attempt to stop wildfires, I want the legislature to require that all investor-owned utilities be required to upgrade their equipment and wiring to best modern practices.

I also want [him/her] to vote “NO” on SB 884 Electricity: expedited utility distribution infrastructure undergrounding program. PG&E wants to charge us taxpayers $20-30 Billion for 10,000 miles of undergrounding instead of fixing their wiring. SoCal Edison fixed theirs within 5 years. Undergrounding is 7 times as expensive and takes much longer, and with PG&E’s record, it will take 140 years. This bill, like SB 396, are related boondoggles for PG&E and we expect our legislators to put our interests to live without threat of fire over the financial interests of utility investors.

Contact (you can also email over the weekend):

  • State Assemblymember Steve Bennett (CA-37): email, SAC (916) 319-2037, SB (805) 564-1649, VTA (805) 641-3700
  • State Assemblymember Jacqui Irwin (CA-44): email, SAC (916) 319-2044, CAM (805) 482-1904, OX (805) 483-4488
  • Not your people? Don’t know?:

Original post:

FAST Action #2!: Email a note to the Office of Government Ethics (OGE) – Remove some of Trump’s slime trail of corruption.

1. Address an email to

2. OGE’s notice says the SUBJECT line MUST read: “Proposed Rule: Legal Expense Fund Regulation (RIN 3209-AA50)” (you can read the proposed rule here)

3. Write a comment — OR, and this is the easy part, cut and paste the one Walter Shaub has drafted for us to use!

I oppose OGE’s proposed legal expense fund regulation as drafted. OGE should: – remove the exception that makes compliance with the regulation optional;

– replace the proposed recusal requirement with a broader 5-year recusal requirement that prevents donors of cash gifts from influencing decisions, policies, or regulations affecting them or the industries in which they have substantial interests;

– remove the offensive example involving an accused sexual harasser; and – place nonprofit charities (501(c)(3) organizations) on an equal footing with large law firms by allowing them to hire legal counsel for whistleblowers.

Original post:

Fast Action #3 – STATE: Brady bills are now passing through the opposite chamber. Encourage your state legislators to vote for them.

Minimal call script to state senators: I’m calling from [zip code] and I want Senator [___] to support bills to reduce gun violence. Are you ready to take down a list?: (just read the black lettering)

  • AB-452 – Pupil safety: parental notification: firearm safety laws. (school notice of safe storage laws) )
  • AB-1621Firearms: unserialized firearms. (ghost gun ban))
  • *AB 2156 Firearm Manufacturing(Closes loopholes that currently allow individuals and corporations to manufacture large numbers of firearms without complying with standard manufacturer requirements.)
  • *AB-2552 – Firearms: gun shows and events. ((gun show oversight)
  • *AB-1769 – Firearms: prohibited places. Stops sales of firearm, firearm precursor part, or ammunition on the property or in the buildings that comprise the Ventura County Fair and Event Center, in Ventura & Ventura county)
  • *AB 223910-Year Gun Ban ExpansionThis bill adds additional misdemeanors to the list of crimes for which the 10-year ban from owning or possessing firearms applies.

(* – final votes happening soon!)

Minimal call script to assemblymembers: I’m calling from [zip code] and I want Assemblymember [___] to support the following bills reduce gun violence. (just read the black lettering)

  • SB-915Firearms: state property. (Sales of firearms, firearm precursor part, or ammunition would no longer be permitted on state property, or property otherwise owned, leased, occupied, or operated by the state.)
  • SB-1384 – Firearms: dealer requirements. (gun dealer code of conduct )

State Contacts

  •  State Senator Monique Limón (SD-19):, SAC (916) 651-4019, SB (805) 965-0862, OX (805)988-1940 
  • State Senator Henry Stern (SD-27):, SAC (916) 651-2027, Calabasas (818) 876-3352
  • State Assemblymember Steve Bennett: (CA-37):, SAC (916) 319-2037, SB (805) 564-1649, VTA (805) 641-370      
  • State Assemblymember Jacqui Irwin: (CA-44):, SAC (916) 319-2044, CAM (805) 482-1904, OX (805) 483-4488
  • Not your people? Which assemblymember/state senator is mine?

Original post:

  • Why do we need to call? Why do we need to call every day?”
    • Answer: People who agree with your viewpoint are NOT the only ones calling. People who disagree with you will be calling every day too. Multiple times. Our legislators keep tallies of the calls. We want them to know what we think, and to tell their colleagues that they have a HUGE number of calls on a particular bill with our point of view. Being the majority is our super power. Plus, sometimes a “Democratic” legislator surprises us. (Cough, cough, Sinema) Never assume anything. 
  • “Why do I need to call? Why not emails, those nifty new fax services or those bot thingies?”
    • Answer: Calls are answered by live people and their tally is immediate. Other methods require someone to read through your message and tally it. Later. Maybe. After face-to-face meetings and town halls, phone calls are our most powerful option. 
  • “Why just my own legislators? Why can’t I call all the GOP legislators who are voting for horrible bills?”
    • Answer: There are two forms of power for politicians. Money and votes. Unless you can offer a substantial donation to their re-election campaigns, the only thing you’ve got is your vote. And if it’s not your own senator, you don’t even have that. Their interns on the phone will be very nice, but they will not tally your calls or email.
  • “But our people aren’t on the committee that’s working on a bill I’m interested in. Logically, don’t those legislators who are on the committee have to represent us too?”
    • Answer: No. No, they don’t. (Unless you are giving them a huge campaign donation. See above.) Try this thought experiment… Do you see Mitch McConnell really trying to fairly represent the wishes of progressive Californians while he sits in committees? No, neither do we. While the bill is being kicked around in the committee, start calling your own legislators to tell them what you’d like them to do if or when it hits the floor for a full vote. 
  • “So how do we reach those legislators in other areas?”
    • Answer: Through your family and friends who live in their states. Help them program their phones with their 5 legislator contacts and teach them how to make fast calls. Keep in touch and make sure that they are confirmed to vote, especially in red states.
  • OK, so what do I do? What do I say?
    • We provide sample scripts with every call action. You only have to tell the intern who answers the phone what position you want the legislator to take. You don’t have to lecture or argue with them. They are just taking a tally. The formula is easy. 
      • 1. Be nice and say “hello.’ The interns who answer the phones have a hard job.  We always try to find out their names, so we can greet them when we call again. 
      • 2. “I’m calling from [zip code] – this establishes that their boss is responsible to you.
      • 3. “I would like Sen/Rep./Assemblymember/etc. [name] to vote [YES, NO] on [Bill name, number].”
      •      or “I would like Sen/Rep./Assemblymember/etc. [name] to vote [PASS, VOTE AGAINST] [describe 
      •      legislation]”
  • DONE! This usually only takes about 10 minutes to do a round of these phone calls. Try to talk to an actual person instead of leaving a message by trying different offices. 
  • More personal, more effort = more effect.  Aside from in-person meetings at town halls and so forth, phone calls are the most effective form of communicating with your members of Congress. Phone calls can’t be ignored. Emails, and social-media posts, and petitions can be ignored. Letters – also a lot of effort, especially those with personal stories the  legislator can share, are powerful tools as well.  Feel free to write/email/post on social media, but only if you make a phone call as well. ​
  • Resources

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