Your weekly Indivisible to-dos:
- Defend DACA recipients. Tell your members of Congress (MoCs) that you want the Dream Act attached to every must-pass bill in Congress using our new script and state-specific explainer. You can also check out our comprehensive resource on how to stand up for Dreamers and all immigrants—in partnership with United We Dream and the National Immigration Law Center—at standup.indivisibleguide.com. Help us spread the word.
- Oppose H.R. 3697. The House is expected to vote this Tuesday on a bill that criminalizes immigrants, including those fleeing gang violence, and allows more of them to be detained and deported. It also affects vulnerable populations such as asylum seekers, TPS holders, and unaccompanied children. Tell your MoCs to vote no on H.R. 3697, the Criminal Alien Gang Member Removal Act.
- Oppose the Budget Resolution. Your House member should oppose the budget resolution expected on the House floor in two weeks, and your Senator should oppose any resolution that makes cuts to Medicaid, Medicare, or SNAP, and doesn’t offset tax cuts with new revenue or closing loopholes. Hold them accountable using our new explainer and script.
- TrumpCare could be back this week… keep it dead. Keep an eye out for the return of TrumpCare by another name: “Graham-Cassidy.” Under Senate rules, Republicans have until September 30 to make TrumpCare happen. Let’s make sure it doesn’t make a comeback—check out our new explainer.
- Prevent war with North Korea. Urge your MoC to speak out against Trump’s warmongering with our explainer.
- Join #NoMuslimBanEver. We’re proud partners of the #NoMuslimBanEver campaign. Head over to their new website at www.nomuslimbanever.com and join the campaign!
- Help us make Indivisible Regional Institutes a reality. We want to hold gatherings of Indivisibles throughout the country, to give core organizing trainings, improve connections and collaboration among groups, and deepen our sense of shared purpose as part of this movement. Help us fund this initiative—and help us unlock double the funds from a grant that will match your donation—so we can bring more people to more Institutes.
- Join Indivisible Policy Director Angel Padilla on Facebook Live at 8:30PM ET Monday. We know you have questions about Schumer and Pelosi’s deal this week, what’s next for the Dream Act, and other things happening on Capitol Hill. Come ready to ask them on Monday right on our Facebook page.
President Trump went back on his word when he ended DACA. On Tuesday, President Trump went back on his word and ended DACA (with help from white supremacist Jeff Sessions), leaving 800,000 immigrant youth with the prospect of imminent deportation to countries they’ve never called home. This shouldn’t surprise any of us—Trump is the poster boy for talking out of two sides of his mouth. But now it’s all eyes on Capitol Hill: unless Congress acts, Trump’s decision will tear families apart and destroy our nation’s promise to be a land of opportunity for all.
“If you only stand up for your own issue, you wait your turn to lose.” On Friday, Indivisible Co-Executive Director Ezra Levin joined United We Dream, U.S. Reps. Gutierrez, Grijalva, and Correa, and others, including DACA recipients, to speak about the need to pass a clean Dream Act now. You can watch his remarks here.
The most important thing you can do this week is stand up and defend DACA recipients. If you do one thing this week. It needs to be this: stand up and defend 800,000 DACA recipients. Here are two things you can do with your group (or on your own) right now:
- Go to standup.indivisibleguide.com and use our state-specific resources and scripts to tell your two senators and representative (Republicans and Democrats!) that you want the Dream Act attached to every must-pass bill in Congress. Not in three months. Not next year. But now. Now is the time for all of our groups to use all of the tools in our toolbox, particularly calls and district visits, to press Congress to protect these youth from the cruelties of this Administration. Plan your visit and make your calls.
- RSVP for an event to stand up for Dreamers (or plan your own!) in cities and states across the country, where thousands of immigrant youth and allies will take to the streets to stand with and demand the protection of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program (DACA) and the Temporary Protected Status (TPS) programs.
And it’s important to tell Every. Single. Member. Of. Congress. that you want this—because last week, Democrats missed a critical opportunity to protect Dreamers. On Wednesday, Democratic leaders Chuck Schumer (NY) and Nancy Pelosi (CA-12) cut a big deal with Donald Trump to fund the government. Their deal with Trump provides badly-need funding for disaster relief for Hurricane Harvey, and it will temporarily raise the debt ceiling and fund the government for three months. All of these items are must-pass legislation, and all of them were going to require Democratic support—so it was a great opportunity to demand that the Dream Act be included. But the final deal didn’t have anything for Dreamers.
Dems gave up their leverage. Democrats are celebrating this deal because it forces Republicans to take a series of politically costly votes twice—in September and December. But the reality is that this deal does nothing to protect the 800,000 youth whose lives have been thrown into jeopardy by Trump’s order. Democrats had leverage, and they gave it up for some quick political points.
But don’t just take it from us—see our statement with United We Dream and the National Immigration Law Center right here (we know, we give you a lot to read, but this is an important read for every Indivisibler). If anybody questions this analysis, point out that the groups directly representing the Dreamers under threat are raising these same concerns. We stand indivisible with the Dreamers.
Lesson: remember that your Democratic MoCs need to hear from you too. This should be a reminder for all of us that our Democratic Members of Congress often need to be nudged to stand up for progressive values. We have to help them keep doing the right thing by holding them accountable. It happened on Trump’s nominations; it happened on the fight over Gorsuch; and it happened on playing hard ball over TrumpCare.
Don’t forget: your MoCs work for you. By all means, build positive, strong relationships with your members of Congress—but don’t ever forget that they work for you, and you’ve got to keep demanding they stand up for progressive values. At Indivisible, we support Dems when they do that, and we criticize them when they don’t—that’s what makes us independent.
On the IndivisiBlog: “They Risked Everything for a Shot at the American Dream. Now, we Must Stand up and Defend Them.” ICYMI, check out the IndivisiBlog from our friend Kamal Essaheb from the National Immigration Law Center.
Tune in to Facebook Live TONIGHT 9/11 at 8:30 PM ET/5:30 PM PT
A word on Hurricane Irma and the continuing cleanup in Texas. We are thinking of all the families in Florida and everywhere else in Hurricane Irma’s path, and hoping for a quick recovery. As we continue to talk to our Indivisible groups on the ground about the situation and how you can help those impacted, we’ll be providing updates on Indivisi.Blog. We’ll also provide you with any updates from Capitol Hill on emergency funding of cleanup efforts. We also continue to stand for our Indivisiblers in Texas who are undergoing a massive cleanup and recovery effort after Harvey. If you missed Indivisible Houston’s blog, including organizations to support after the storm, you can read it here.
This week on Capitol Hill
Lots of happenings this week on the Hill—and lots of chances to hold your MoCs accountable to do the right thing for the people they work for (that’s you). Remember to check out our Capitol Calendar for the latest. Here are your weekly to-dos:
Stand Up for immigrants: tell your MoC to vote no on H.R. 3697. With the whole country’s eyes on the futures of DACA recipients, Trump’s friends in Congress have been working to move along other parts of their anti-immigrant agenda. The House is expected to vote this Tuesday on H.R. 3697, the Criminal Alien Gang Member Removal Act. This bill would allow Trump’s deportation machine to label wider categories of immigrants as “gang members,” including those fleeing gang violence. It also affects vulnerable populations such as asylum seekers, TPS holders, and unaccompanied children. Tell your MoCs to vote “No.”
Oppose the Budget Resolution. The budget resolution is step one of two in passing the Trump Tax Scam (check out our comprehensive resource as you ramp up work on opposing Trump’s tax plan). The version moving through the House is totally appalling: it makes deep cuts to Medicaid and SNAP and voucherizes Medicare, all to give more funding to the Pentagon. It also sets up the special reconciliation process that Republicans plan to use to jam the Trump Tax Scam through the Senate, just like TrumpCare. Your House members should oppose the House budget resolution, and your Senators should oppose any resolution that cuts Medicaid, Medicare, or SNAP, or has reconciliation instructions that don’t require Congress to offset tax cuts with new revenue. And now is the time to make those calls and visits—the resolution could be on the floor in two weeks. We’ve got an explainer to get you started.
Make sure TrumpCare Stays Dead. We know under Senate rules, Republicans have until September 30 to jam TrumpCare through the Senate. Zombie TrumpCare has a new name: “Graham-Cassidy.” Don’t be fooled by the change in title: this bill is just as terrible as previous versions of TrumpCare, as it would destroy Medicaid as we know it and it would give states inadequate block grants that wouldn’t nearly match the current level of support for helping people afford insurance. Read our Graham-Cassidy explainer here and ramp up efforts to make sure that we keep TrumpCare dead as a doornail—and remind your MoC that you’re still paying attention.
Prevent War with North Korea. Trump is still beating the drum for war with North Korea. Instead of exploring rational and strategic diplomacy in the face of the rogue nation’s nuclear weapons tests, the administration has talked about a “massive military response” and said that North Korea is “begging for war.” The last thing we need when it comes to North Korea is an unstable Trump tweeting threats. With media reports indicating there could be another missile test this weekend, there’s no better time for your MoCs to speak out and deny Trump any authorization for war with North Korea. The stakes are too high for Congress to stay silent (because we know Trump won’t)—take a look at our updated resource, and don’t let them off the hook.
Other Indivislble To-Dos
Join #NoMuslimBanEver. We’re proud partners of the #NoMuslimBanEver campaign, a grassroots awareness and mobilization effort happening in the weeks leading up to and on October 10, 2017, when the Supreme Court will hear legal challenges to the Muslim and refugee bans. Check out the campaign’s new website, www.nomuslimbanever.com and join us in saying #NoMuslimBanEver! Here are 5 things you can do today:
- Visit www.nomuslimbanever.com to learn more about the campaign’s principles, messages, and how you can get involved.
- Host an event in your local community to raise awareness about the Muslim and refugee bans. You can find ideas on how to organize events and key dates in our toolkit, available here, Once you have your plans in place, please register your event here to reach a wider audience.
- Sign up to join the 10/10 mobilization, led by MPower Change, in front of the Supreme Court here.
- Share downloadable graphics with your networks; put them up as profile pictures; and spread the word on social media.
- Spread the word about the #NoMuslimBanEver campaign with these click to tweet messages.
Make IndivisiSchool a reality. We are super excited to announce Indivisible Regional Institutes this fall, which will bring Indivisibles together in person and give you more tools in this fight—advanced organizing skills, improved coordination with other groups, and space to plan and strategize. But we need your help!
We want to hold as many Regional Institutes as possible and fund travel of Indivisibles to ensure it’s accessible to all. Can you pitch in to help us launch this exciting initiative? This week, every dollar you give will be matched 1:1, doubling your impact. Here’s what your matched tax deductible donation will allow us to do:
- Materials packet and training resources for three attendees: $23
- Venue and audio/video rental per person: $51
- Roundtrip airfare for one person to attend the Institute: $350
That’s it! We’re grateful for the support our Indivisible community has shown to hundreds of thousands of DACAmented youth and their families this week, and we know it will be a tough fight ahead to #DefendDACA. But we also know that you have the power to win this fight—just you have won others.
Let’s do this.
P.S. While tele-town halls may be a sham, your MoCs will more than likely try to have one to appear available to you and his or her other constituents. Check out this fantastic IndivisiBlog from NJ11th for Change’s John Hartinger and Elizabeth Juviler on getting creative with tele-town halls in New Jersey and how they are working to hold Rodney Frelinghuysen accountable.
If you have an idea for a blog or are interested in writing one to highlight your group’s work to hold your member of Congress accountable, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.