Wednesday 1/10 – The Last Line of Defense

Anytime we can take a breath in our resistance battles, it’s because a good judge stopped our current administration from doing something illegal, immoral, needlessly cruel or any combo of the above.

Tomorrow, Thursday, the Judiciary Committee will be discussing these hand-picked horrors who desperately want to continue Trump’s agenda, with a lifetime seat at our expense. We give you all the information you need to make one call.

  1. Thomas Alvin Farr – We need to oppose a federal judge appointee with a history of condoning race-based voter suppression. His career is closely associated with attacks on the rights of vulnerable citizens. For the last three decades, Farr, who represented the campaign of the ultraconservative Senator Jesse Helms at a time when the campaign was accused of taking part in conduct designed to intimidate black voters, has committed himself to two main missions: disenfranchising voters of color and attacking workers’ rights. Now up for nomination again a second time for 2018, two times too many.
  2. David Stras nomination for US Court of Appeals for the eighth Circuit. – Another far right candidate who has ruled against government transparency, ruled to limit the rights of children with disabilities, and women, and sided with Minnesota’s Republican legislature in its effort to put on the ballot a measure to make it more difficult for minorities and the elderly to vote, in language that was “phrased to actively deceive and mislead.” https://www.afj.org/our-work/nominees/david-stras
  3. Stuart Kyle Duncan – He has fought contraception coverage for women, a woman’s right to choose and LGBTQ equality. He has fought to make it more difficult for people of color to vote, opposes criminal justice reform and doesn’t respect legal precedent.
  4. Liles BurkeKeeping a picture of Confederate President Jefferson Davis in his office communicates hostility to communities of color and raises questions about Burke’s commitment to civil rights and his ability to be an impartial jurist for all who come before him. Burke has ruled that rap lyrics written by the defendant could be used against him for a crime occurring years later and that the word “child” in Alabama’s child endangerment statute applies to the unborn, opening the door to the prosecution of pregnant women. He allowed removal of so many black and female jurors, the case involved was appealed.
  5. Matthew KacsmarykWhere to start…He has attacked Roe v. Wade, is anti-LGBTQ and has opposed regulations under the Affordable Care Act that forbid healthcare providers from discriminating against people based on gender identity, “sex stereotyping,” and “termination of pregnancy”,  hates gay marriage, supported Kim Davis and likes “conversion therapy”.

Monday – Stop the Drilling – 3 Actions

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Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke has officially released the draft OCS 5 year leasing plan which includes areas for new oil drilling in the Pacific Ocean among other areas currently closed to leasing. Jim Hines, our intrepid Sierra Club connection, has officially requested through the Secretary of Interior office that two full days of public hearings be held in Ventura and Santa Barbara so that people in the affected area can attend and comment on the 5-year plan. The Secretary promised him this last year and that there will be a public comment period and then a re-write of the plan depending upon public comment.

Here is the comment website which is open for comments TODAY, MONDAY Jan. 8th.  https://www.boem.gov/National-Program/

Call #1 – Federal 

Co-sponsor HR 2272 and S. 999 – COAST Anti-Drilling Act
Despite bipartisan agreement that offshore drilling endangers our coastal communities and harms their economies, Trump’s administration announced they were throwing out protection acts and allowing offshore drilling in nearly all coastal areas off the continental US, opening areas in the Atlantic, Pacific, and Arctic Oceans along with the Gulf of Mexico. Apparently, our government is now an arm of BP and other oil and gas companies.

Minimal Script: I’m calling from [zip code] to ask Senator [___] to co-sponsor the COAST Anti-Drilling Act. We must stop Trump’s plans to sell off America’s coastlines for oil & gas development — including plans for six new leases off California’s shores.
http://beta.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-california-offshore-drilling-20180106-story.html

3 fast actions for Thursday and more!

First – Need some borrowed energy?

  •  Read this and this.
  •  Join us! Check out our “Local Events – Resist” listing. Here’s some things happening soon!
    Today we’re having a postcard party. We’ll be listing more of these soon.
    January 7th, we’re having our first canvassing and registration party of 2018. We’re doing this almost every week, so come out. You’ll always get training and work alongside experienced people.
  • Resistance works.
  • If you’ve ever thought about joining in a phonebank but found the whole idea really scary, there is a conference call training session TONIGHT (Jan. 4th) at 7 pm PST to help break it down for us phone-phobic people!
  • If calling anyone, especially your legislators, makes you nervous, click here.

1. Lend your courage to our Senators in the fight for DACA

Senator Feinstein almost reneged on her promise. Your calls made her stand up. Never underestimate the power of calling your Democratic legislators. Start revving up her courage and willpower starting today! Use this short script below and give her a “welcome back” call.)

Minimal Script: I’m calling from [zip code] to urge Congressperson/Senator [___] to require the addition of  a clean Dream Act as a condition of any spending bill until the Dream Act passes.

More script if you need it: Every day that Congress fails to act, 122 Dreamers lose their DACA status and become deportable. A vote on a continuing resolution without the Dream Act, is a vote to deport Dreamers.

TELL Senator Feinstein TO CONTINUE TO BE BRAVE: email, DC (202) 224-3841, LA (310) 914-7300, SF (415) 393-0707, SD (619) 231-9712, Fresno (559) 485-7430

and THANK Senator Harris: email, DC (202) 224-3553, LA (213) 894-5000, SAC (916) 448-2787, Fresno (559) 497-5109, SF (415) 355-9041, SD (619) 239-3884

Other Senator Contacts: http://www.phoneyourrep.com

2. Another fox in the henhouse. Ask our Senators to stop this.

The U.S. Census Bureau is the agency that determines the allocation of representatives and how political districts are drawn. So the Deputy Director this bureau should NOT be a guy named Thomas Brunell, who wrote a un-American, anti-democratic book called “Redistricting and Representation: Why Competitive Elections are Bad for America”. Duh! There was enough stink to keep him from becoming head of the bureau, but now the GOP is trying to stick him in a position that doesn’t require Senate confirmation. (We’ll talk about the proposed Census questions tomorrow.)

Continue reading “3 fast actions for Thursday and more!”

Clean Dream Act. Dec. 22nd.

Yesterday, we talked about Paul Ryan’s call for more tax-paying citizens and how he forgot to mention that 800,000 pre-citizens already dwell peacefully with us, paying taxes and starting businesses. The loss of these Dreamers would be a such a huge hit to our economy that even the hyper-conservative Koch brothers are concerned.

But GOP legislators, exhausted after passing their masterpiece of looting and pillaging, want to go home with their families to celebrate, while 1,000 people lose their legal status every week.

Here are the Dream Heroes, that have already taken the pledge to vote ‘NO” on any Continuing Resolution (CR) that doesn’t include a clean DREAM ACT. (Check here for defectors, including our own Senator Dianne Feinstein)

Here are the Dream Killers, who haven’t.

#1 – Take 10 seconds and make this call. Give some courage to our legislators!

Continue reading “Clean Dream Act. Dec. 22nd.”

2018 is coming.

This video was, and is, all true. And while these looters will try to distract us, exhaust us and mislead us,  we’re going to get down to the business of throwing them out and recovering what they’ve stolen.

 (Letter from Indivisible’s founders Leah Greenberg and Ezra Levin)

334 days. That’s how long this movement, our progressive allies, and hundreds of thousands of activists across the country denied Republicans and Trump a major legislative victory.

Last night, the House passed the Trump Tax Scam 227 votes to 203 votes (with 12 Republicans voting against). In the cover of darkness, the Senate passed the bill in a party-line vote, 51 votes to 48 votes just before 1am. And, just now, because Republicans are literally terrible at governing, the House re-voted on the bill sending it off to Trump’s desk.

This loss hurts.

This bill will have real, terrible, human consequences. In one fell swoop, Republicans gave huge tax cuts to corporations and their millionaire donors, gutted the centerpiece of the Affordable Care Act leaving millions more without health insurance, opened up Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) for drilling… all with essentially no public debate.

With this vote, Republicans thumbed their nose at their constituents, democracy, and regular order. Trump, Paul Ryan, Mitch McConnell, and the Freedom Caucus all showed they don’t care about reducing the deficit or representing their constituents. They care about nothing more than lining the pockets of themselves (lookin’ at you, Bob Corker) and their donors. And when you’re facing opponents like that, it’s a hard fight to win.

But let’s be clear: you did everything right. This isn’t the victory we hoped for, but we left it all on the field. Indivisibles held 351 actions to protest the tax scam. You made 323,563 phone calls to progressives in key red states to amp up the pressure and 23,512 calls were made to members of Congress. You dragged this fight out to the bitter end and made it as painful as possible for them to betray their constituents.

Take a minute to grieve this loss, but be proud of everything you did to fight for justice over the last few weeks. But this fight isn’t over. Continue reading “2018 is coming.”

Clean Dream Act. Dec. 22nd.

Paul Ryan, in a statement that instantly made us think of Nazis, would like women to make more babies to strengthen our economy.

Of course, the GOP has also voted against every bill that would make pregnancy, childbirth and the raising of children affordable, much less sending them to college without crushing debt. Just yesterday, Ryan and his ilk passed the #TrumpTaxScam, a bill that prioritizes corporations, which cannot have children, over everyday citizens who can but can’t afford to, while setting the stage for the destruction of our safety net that will harm children as well as senior citizens.

So, instead of looking to the Nazis for economic answers, we have an immediate solution based on own American traditions… Immigration.

Let’s start now with the DACA/Dreamers, almost 800,000 already-grown people brought here by their parents as children, already educated in American schools, already fluent in English, already going to school, buying homes, in our military and  hospitals, starting businesses, and paying taxes. Exactly what Paul Ryan says we need.

The alternative to allowing our racism and xenophobia triumph is a huge hit to our economy.  So, if you know people who are unable to see the morality of helping the DACA kids, tell to support them for the economy. God, even the Koch brothers are saying we should do this. Hell has officially frozen over and it’s hosting skating parties.

The push for a clean Dream Act by Dec. 22nd continues!

#1 – Take 10 seconds and make this call

Continue reading “Clean Dream Act. Dec. 22nd.”

#CorkerKickback – A Holiday gift to Trump and more than a quarter of all GOP Senators! Last Day! Go nuts!

The House is scheduled to vote today; the Senate tomorrow.

Amongst all the other provisions transferring wealth from the poor and middle class to the wealthy and corporations, is a last minute giveaway to the richest, not only to their wealthy donors but an early Christmas gift to President “I’m very greedy”  Trump and themselves too.

“According to an analysis of federal records by the International Business Times (IBT), a “special provision” buried in the 500-page Republican tax bill—which has come to be known as the #CorkerKickback—could amount to a combined $14 million annual income boost for “more than a quarter of all GOP senators.” (CommonDreams)

As IBT reports:

In all, 14 Republican senators (see list below) hold financial interests in 26 income-generating real-estate partnerships—worth as much as $105 million in total. Those holdings together produced between $2.4 million and $14.1 million in rent and interest income in 2016, according to federal records.

IBT first reported on the tax carve-out, which allows investors in “pass-through” entities, including real-estate partnerships such as LLCs and LPs, with few employees to deduct part of their income that passes through those partnerships.

Here’s who gains… Orrin Hatch, who wrote the provision, not surprisingly, one of it’s beneficiaries.

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$14 million dollars! Now that’s a nice stocking stuffer! 

Hey…let’s leave them a lump of coal instead, since they seem to like it so much!

#1 – Basic Call: Click here.

Do this even if you have a Democrat for a Representative and/or Senator, it matters. If calling seems to take too much time, try these tips to make calling faster. If calling makes you nervous, read here about how to make it easier.

#2 – Want some info on your particular legislator’s position? Click here.

OK, now pick one of these options and pledge to yourself a small block of time to help our country.

Continue reading “#CorkerKickback – A Holiday gift to Trump and more than a quarter of all GOP Senators! Last Day! Go nuts!”

Things to do on Monday!

Continue calling on the #TrumpTaxScam! It matters!

Yes, it matters. Even if you have a Democrat for a Representative and/or Senator, it matters. If calling seems to take too much time, try these tips to make calling faster. If calling makes you nervous, read here about how to make it easier.

Here’s a partial list of it’s crimes…

  • The national debt will explode way beyond what the tax cuts could possibly do to generate business. Much will go to foreign investors ($700 BILLION!). Much will be parked away from American soil.
  • They will destroy Medicare and Social Security to pay for it.
  • The health insurance market is almost certain to implode next year, BECAUSE of the repeal of the individual mandate. The CBO estimates that 13 million Americans left without health insurance. One illness or injury can push hard-working people into medical bankrupcies. Rural hospitals will close.
  • The elimination of important local tax deductions, and with it the pressure of deep cuts to education.
  • A complicated provision was added at the last minute that will provide a multimillion-dollar windfall to real estate investors such as Trump and his son-in-law Jared Kushner. Senator Corker, a new “Yes” vote for this scam, will also profit from this. Hmmm… When asked about these blatantly corrupt changes, Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn (R-Tex.) blamed Democrats.  “Our Democratic colleagues simply refused to participate in the process,” he said on ABC. “We probably could have made it better if they had.”
  • The highest rate dropped from 39.5% for those earning over $470,000 to 37% for those earning over $500k for singles and $600K of married couples. Merry Christmas indeed!
  • The estate tax withholding doubled. The Trump kids will have a very merry holiday indeed.
  • The looters removed the corporate Alternative Minimum tax, which made it difficult for corporations to reduce their tax bill lower than 21%.
  • The tax loopholes Trump promised to get rid of are still there, of course.
  • “Trickle-down” was proven a loser in Kansas. NY City Mayor said in an op-ed “This Tax Bill Is a Trillion-Dollar Blunder” that “It’s pure fantasy to think that the tax bill will lead to significantly higher wages and growth.”
  • This bill has created more incentives to “shift profits and operations overseas”. “How the Tax Plan Will Send Jobs Overseas – Companies are going to be able to save a ton of money by locating factories abroad.”
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  • Repatriation of American investments back here isn’t going to happen.
  • Income inequality is going to expand. Welcome to the circumstances preceeding the Great Depression.
  • This #TrumpTaxScam will be judged as the most regressive tax bill of our generation. Analysts have gone back 50 years to be sure.
  • More here.

This just in!

  • The cost of the GOP tax scam can exceed $2 TRILLION dollars!
    “The GOP tax bill would cost significantly more if tax cuts that are temporary in the legislation are eventually made permanent, according to two new reports.” Which cuts are those, you wonder? Not the ones for corporations!
  • The tragic Amtrak derailment in Washington state that took 3 lives has reminded Trump that the government is responsible for infrastructure. But after his “historic tax cut”, we wonder where they’re going to find the cash…infrastructure

The GOP’s rush for a final Trump Tax Scam vote is truly a last ditch effort.
Doug Jones’ victory in Alabama — powered by a fired up electorate of progressives who are getting out there and working hard — is a sure sign that Americans are ready to reject Republicans’ vision for the country. That is why they’re in a hurry. Plus Trump wants a BIG Christmas gift. From us. Continue reading “Things to do on Monday!”

Fight! Make their phones ring! Fill their voicemail! Show up at their offices!

Fake Deadlines!

They’re planning on passing this flaming turd on Wednesday afternoon. Their self-imposed and totally artificial deadline of giving Trump a multi-million dollar Christmas present at our expense prevents us, the losers in this game, from getting a complete idea of what’s in store for us. The most important bill we have, that will actually kill people – some of the 13 million who will lose their health insurance as a result of removing the ACA mandate and some who depend on Medicaid and other programs, is still cloaked in secrecy.

They won’t wait for Doug Jones, unlike the courtesy paid to them by Democrats who held off a health care reform vote for the newly elected Scott Brown. (Every good turn done to Mitch McConnell reminds on of the Scorpion and the Turtle story.)

Their game is incredibly cruel and corrupt. https://mobile.twitter.com/IndivisibleTeam/status/941728219887259648

guide

Fake Compromise!

This is all we know so far. They’ve just shuffled the goodies for the rich people’s stockings around a little.

  • 37% top individual rate
  • 21% top corporate rate starting 2018
  • $10,000 cap on State and Local Tax deduction
  • 20% deduction for “pass-through” corps
  • Ends corporate AMT, keeps for individuals over $1 million
  • Double estate tax exemption
  • Repeals individual health insurance mandate (will d
  • Raises repatriation rates from Senate bill (likely 8% for non-liquid funds, 15% for cash)
  • Keeps grad student deduction
  • Keeps medical expense deduction at 7.5% the next two years
  • Allows drilling in ANWR
  • It does NOT include the dark-money-from-churches language because all parts of the bill must have a budgetary effect to prevent opening the process up to Democratic filibuster. Burn!

Real Pain.

Continue reading “Fight! Make their phones ring! Fill their voicemail! Show up at their offices!”

Going backwards at full speed. Next stop…your wallet.

The GOP voted yesterday to destroy an important Obama-era consumer protection.

Despite overwhelming evidence that the public disapproved of a future of extortionate fees, blocked websites, throttled services and content censorship, the GOP-majority members of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) completed their mission of rooting out and destroying Obama-era landmarks by voting 3-2 along party lines Thursday to repeal its landmark net neutrality protections.

They did this despite credible evidence of corruption…

Eighteen attorneys general, dozens of Democratic congressmen and two Republicans had pushed for a delay to the ruling to address the millions of fake comments supporting the repeal, but FCC Chairman Ajit Pai refused. Two million comments filed to the FCC on net neutrality were submitted under stolen identities, said Commissioner Rosenworcel, who opposed the repeal. Half a million came from Russian addresses, and 50,000 net neutrality complaints have gone “inexplicably missing.”

They did this despite fierce public opposition…

“Organic” comments from real people, approximately 22,000,000 of them, were overwhelmingly against the repeal.  There were 700 protests across the country last week to stop the FCC’s attack on the internet, or that 83% of Americans opposed his plan to repeal Title II.Meanwhile Democratic lawmakers and dozens of activists protested outside. Despite all this and after a bomb threat cleared the room for a short time, the voting took place.

History proves that allowing corporations to regulate themselves is a terrible idea.

Continue reading “Going backwards at full speed. Next stop…your wallet.”