Calls to Action 

 Our Calls To Action are easy ways you can make a difference.  Only vetted, official TWW NoVA items will appear below.  Please bookmark this page as it will be updated frequently.

 
 

ELECTION DAY is Tuesday, November 7. Virginia voters will be electing Governor Northam, Lt. Governor Justin Fairfax, and re-electing Attorney General Herring. GET OUT AND VOTE! GET OUT AND CANVASS!

Posted 10/30/2017

Progressives all throughout the U.S. are watching and depending upon the outcome of Virginia Elections to be a visible turning point against the current, very harmful Trump administration.\

So will you show up to vote? Will you resist with your vote, not just with your protests?  Will you help GOTV? (Get Out The Vote)

Listen to Barack Obama: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=naYj_ZJnDkQ  "Elections matter. Voting matters. You can't sit this one out."

Grassroots groups are partnering to GOTV. There is one more very important week to light a fire under Virginia voters.  Sign up here:  http://events.mobilizeamerica.io/wofa/

VOTE ON TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 7!   JUST VOTE!

Support Sensible Gun Control. Ban Bump Stocks.

Posted 10/30/2017

Following the Las Vegas mass shooting, members of Congress acted quickly to introduce legislation which would ban bump stocks, or other devices which modify semi-automatic firearms to act as fully-automatic. In the weeks since then, momentum has slowed and progress on both bills has stalled. Of course there is much more to be done on gun control, but this is certainly a start.

Let's make our voices heard, and build the momentum back up. Call your representative in the House to support the bipartisan H.R. 3999, and our senators to support S. 1916 (the Automatic Gunfire Prevention Act).

There are no Virginia representatives that are co-sponsors of the bipartisan House bill H.R. 3999. Both Senator Kaine and Senator Warner are already co-sponsors of the Senate S. 1916 bill.

Suggested Script:

For House Representatives:

“Hi, my name is __________. I live in ___________ and I am a constituent of Representative ____________. I am calling today to ask him/her to co-sponsor and support H.R. 3999, the bill to ban bump stocks. I was horrified by the massacre that took place in Las Vegas earlier this month, and demand that Congress act to take steps towards preventing similar kinds of violence from occurring in the future. Thank you.”

For Senators:

“Hi, my name is __________. I live in Virginia and I am a constituent of Senator [Kaine/Warner]. I am calling today to thank him for co-sponsoring The Automatic Gunfire Prevention Act. I was horrified by the massacre that took place in Las Vegas earlier this month, and demand that Congress act to take steps towards preventing similar kinds of violence from occurring in the future. Thank you.”

For more information:

http://thehill.com/homenews/house/354762-bipartisan-lawmakers-unveil-bill-to-ban-gun-bump-stocks    and    http://wapo.st/2ixGr4V

 

Ask your MoCs to vote yes to S. 1960 and H.R. 4084 which will remove legal obstacles that prevent the Drug Enforcement Administration from stopping the wrongful distribution of opioids!  

Posted 10/30/2017

In 2016, Rep. Tom Marino, in line to be Trump’s drug czar until he withdrew last week, successfully pushed through the Ensuring Patient Access and Effective Drug Enforcement Act which made it virtually impossible for the DEA to freeze suspicious narcotic shipments from drug distributors to buyers. Previously, and for many years, some drug distributors were fined for repeatedly ignoring warnings from the DEA to shut down suspicious sales of hundreds of millions of pills, while they racked up billions of dollars in sales. That powerful tool had allowed the agency to immediately prevent drugs from reaching the street. Background info: https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/2017/investigations/dea-drug-industry-congress/?utm_term=.2dac4bd8bac4   Listen:  https://www.acast.com/60minutes/sunday-october-15-2017

 

In the aftermath of the 60 Minutes/WP report on how Congress unanimously, and seemingly unknowingly, consented to limiting the DEA’s powers, bills are in the House and Senate to repeal the offending law, which diluted enforcement clauses of the Controlled Substances Act.  

Tell your MoCs to support and vote in favor of S. 1960 and H.R. 4084. Currently, no Virginia Senator or Representative is a co-sponsor of either bill.

Urge Senators Kaine and Warner to co-sponsor the Alexander-Murray ACA Stabilization Deal

Posted 10/23/2017

Led by Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn) and Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash), a bipartisan coalition of 24 senators — 12 Republicans and 12 Democrats — has signed on to sponsor health care legislation that will prop up the individual insurance market and keep premiums down.

Most Americans get health insurance through their employer or from the government. About 18 million Americans get their insurance through the individual market established by the Affordable Care Act. "They're the ones we're worried about; they're the ones we're seeking to help," Alexander said, noting that includes about 350,000 people in his home state.

These bipartisan negotiators announced Tuesday that they had struck a deal to temporarily stabilize Obamacare markets. Republican Sen. Lamar Alexander (Tenn.) agreed to continue paying “cost-sharing reduction” payments that the government promised insurance companies, and Democratic Sen. Patty Murray (Wash.) agreed to relax health-market regulations a bit.  But House conservatives attacked it, and President Trump, who initially sounded a favorable note, soon flip-flopped.

Contrary to Mr. Trump’s rhetoric, the payments are not bailouts, but reimbursements for subsidies that the government ordered insurance companies to offer low-income people. If the payments are not made, premiums would spike unnecessarily. Courts would eventually order the government to pay insurers, because the law requires it, which would force taxpayers to pay out even more in massive legal settlements.

The Congressional Budget Office has released an analysis concluding termination of CSR payments would increase premiums for the most popular individual market plans by 20% next year and 25% by 2020 and leave about 5% of the population without access to any individual plans at all.  By contrast, if the CSRs were left in place, less than 0.5% of the population would live in a region without access to individual market plans.  Insurers will be able to withdraw from the marketplace in 2018 if CSRs are not renewed, which could leave thousands of people unable to purchase any plans through the health insurance marketplace as soon as next year. By cutting subsidy payments, Trump is effectively kicking the issue to Congress.  It will be up to Congress to appropriate funds for the CSR payments to prevent turmoil in the individual insurance market and real harm to individuals.

Sample Script:
Hello, my name is __________, and I am calling to urge Senator Kaine/Warren to sign on as a co-sponsor of the compromise reached last week to save the Affordable Care Act's cost-sharing reduction payments. These payments help keep premiums down on the individual market, and failing to reinstate them will leave millions of people without coverage. This compromise isn't perfect, but it's a worthy effort to achieve a bipartisan fix for a system President Trump is intent on breaking. Thank you!

List of Senate Co-Sponsors
Republican sponsors: Alexander, Sens. Mike Rounds, Lindsey Graham, John McCain, Bill Cassidy, Susan Collins, Joni Ernst, Lisa Murkowski, Richard Burr, Bob Corker, Johnny Isakson, Chuck Grassley

Democratic sponsors: Murray, Sens. Angus King, Jeanne Shaheen, Joe Donnelly, Amy Klobuchar, Al Franken, Heidi Heitkamp, Joe Manchin, Tom Carper, Tammy Baldwin, Claire McCaskill, Maggie Hassan

For More Information:
https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/if-republicans-kill-this-health-care-bill-theyll-prove-their-cowardice/2017/10/18/e5a0f504-b432-11e7-be94-fabb0f1e9ffb_story.html?utm_term=.1f57c166cf79
 

Take Trump's finger OFF the nuclear button! Support HR 669 / S 200

Posted 10/23/2017

Right now, Trump holds the power to launch a devastating nuclear strike without the authorization of Congress, according to legislation sponsors Rep. Lieu and Senator Markey.

With Trump decertifying the successful diplomatic nuclear agreement with Iran and escalating tensions with North Korea, Congress must move quickly—propelled by constituent calls—to take away his this President’s ability to launch a nuclear first strike.

Tell your Member of Congress to support and co-sponsor H.R. 669 / S. 200, parallel bills in the House and Senate that restrict Donald Trump’s ability to launch a unilateral nuclear strike without a congressional declaration of war.

For more information:

https://lieu.house.gov/media-center/press-releases/congressman-lieu-senator-markey-introduce-restricting-first-use-0

http://www.sacbee.com/opinion/editorials/article178291651.html

Don Beyer is the only Virginia Representative to co-sponsor. If you live in his district, please call him to thank him. If you do not live in his district, please call your representative to urge him or her to support the bill and co-sponsor it.

Currently, neither Senator Kaine nor Senator Warner are co-sponsors of the bill. Please call them and urge them to support the bill and co-sponsor it.

Suggested Script:

“Hi, my name is [NAME]. I am your constituent and I live in [CITY/STATE/ZIP]. I am calling today to ask [SENATOR or REP NAME] to support and co-sponsor the Restricting First Use of Nuclear Weapons Act. Our current president is a man not to be trusted with the power to launch nuclear weapons. He has displayed frequent unpredictable and dangerous temper tantrums. There is too much at stake and we must curtail this power and put it in the hands of Congress. Thank you.”

Credits: Daily Action

Support Equality! Support the Do No Harm Act (H.R. 3222)

Posted 10/22/2017

Religious freedom is a fundamental American value and a basic tenant of our Constitution, but it should not be used as a weapon to cause harm to others. And, Republicans are using religion as an excuse to discriminate. The 1993 Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) has been used to justify discriminatory acts in this country over the past two decades.

 

The “Do No Harm Act” would clarify that the RFRA can’t be used to exempt anyone from laws that prohibit discrimination, require equal pay, protect child welfare, or guarantee access to health care.

This bill will ensure that this country continues to protect true religious freedom for all, without allowing religion to be used to hurt others.

We’re all free to believe – or not – as we see fit, and to practice our faith. What we can’t must not do is use religion as an excuse to discriminate against or harm others.

Tell your members of Congress you want them to co-sponsor the Do No Harm Act today. Note that of the Northern Virginia representatives, only Don Beyer is a co-sponsor. If you are in his district, please call him to say thank you. If you are in another district, please call to urge them to support this bill and to co-sponsor it.

Suggested Script:

“Hi, my name is [NAME]. I am your constituent and I live in [CITY/STATE/ZIP]. I am calling today to ask [SENATOR or REP NAME] to support and co-sponsor the Do No Harm Act. I believe in true religious freedom and to me that means not using religion as an excuse to justify unfair discrimination against people for their sexual orientation or as an excuse to justify not providing women with birth control. Thank you.”

(Contact information at the bottom.)

Credits: ACLU


CONTACT INFORMATION

Senators 

Senator Tim Kaine:

DC Office: 202-224-4024 or Manassas Office: 703-361-3192

https://www.kaine.senate.gov/contact

Senator Mark Warner:

DC Office: 202-224-2023 or Vienna Office: 703-442-0670

https://www.warner.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/contact

House Representatives 

Don Beyer -- 8th District

DC Office: (202) 225-4376 or Alexandria Office: (703) 658-5403

https://beyer.house.gov/contact/

Gerald E. Connolly --11th District

DC Office (202) 225-1492 or Annandale Office: (703) 256-3071

https://connolly.house.gov/contact/

Barbara Comstock - 10th District

DC Office:  (202) 225-5136 or Loudoun Office Phone: (202) 225-5136

https://comstock.house.gov/contact

Find your U.S. Representative

http://www.house.gov/representatives/find/

Tell Congress to renew Children’s Health Insurance NOW.

Posted 10/9/2017

The Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) provides health insurance to nearly 9 million children in low- and moderate-income working families who make too much to qualify to for Medicaid.  In some states, it also covers pregnant women.   In Virginia, nearly 200,000 children are covered by CHIP (known here as FAMIS)  Since CHIP was enacted in 1997, the uninsured rate for children has dropped by nearly 68%.

Federal funding for the CHIP program expired on September 30.  States still have some carry over money, but will soon stop enrolling kids or even cutting kids off if Congress doesn’t take action right away.

Senate committee leaders agreed to an extension for CHIP back in September, but the bill got put aside because of the Republican leadership’s final attempt to repeal Obamacare.  While CHIP has bipartisan support, the House extension bill would pay for it by cutting other important programs.

Call Senators Mark Warner and Tim Kaine, and your representative, and tell them to support a clean five-year extension of CHIP,  based on the Hatch-Wyden agreement (S. 1827), as soon as possible.  Don’t let this wait until December.

For more info on CHIP, see:  https://www.momsrising.org/blog/9-million-reasons-congress-must-act-now-to-save-chip

https://www.kff.org/medicaid/fact-sheet/comparison-of-key-provisions-in-the-senate-and-house-chip-bills/

To see if your child might be eligible for FAMIS, see:

https://www.coverva.org/programs_famis.cfm

Remind MoCs to Help Puerto Rico

Posted 10/9/2017

We must keep pressure up on our MoCs to assist Puerto Rico. The devastation there is extensive affecting hospitals, businesses and agriculture. From the Boston Globe: “When the Category 4 hurricane barreled through the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico (a U.S. territory) two weeks ago, at least 36 people died and tens of thousands lost their homes and businesses. But the island’s valuable livestock and vegetable farms — a significant part of its economy — sustained devastating losses as well.” Within a few hours, the storm destroyed an estimated 80 percent of the value of the island’s agricultural crops, costing it some $780 million.  90 percent of the island is still without electricity, and only about a quarter of cell-phone towers are back online. Gas is flowing again to 74 percent of gas stations, according to FEMA, but roads are still badly damaged, complicating travel and aid delivery.  

Please contact our MoCs and remind them to support all efforts to supply aid to Puerto Rico.

Suggested script: “As your constituent, I am contacting you to remind you that Puerto Rico remains devastated by the damage done by Hurricane Maria and continues to need relief.  Please support all efforts to provide aid to them.  Thank you.”

Senator Kaine has joined others in demanding action from President Trump:  https://www.kaine.senate.gov/press-releases/kaine-colleagues-to-trump-we-must-do-more-for-puerto-rico-and-usvis.  Remember to thank him for his efforts.

For suggestions about how you can help directly, please read: http://abcnews.go.com/Business/wireStory/helping-puerto-rico-donate-50179990; search crowdfunding sites GoFundMe.com and YouCaring.com. and search “Puerto Rico.”

Demand Common Sense Gun Reform

Posted 10/9/2017

The horrific shooting in Las Vegas last weekend have many of us wondering, what can we do now to help prevent more tragedies. One concrete way is to advocate for stronger gun control. Most Americans favor common sense gun control, even Republicans.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/monkey-cage/wp/2017/10/03/lots-of-republicans-actually-support-gun-control/?utm_term=.1ff7d785c246

Here are a few ways that you can help:

-- Join an advocacy group such as Moms Demand Action. You don’t have to be a mom to join. All advocates of common sense gun control are welcome.

https://momsdemandaction.org/

-- Call your MoCs about current legislation being proposed. I’d like to bring your attention to three specific bills: The first two are pro-gun bills in the House and the third is a gun control measure that was just introduced in the Senate.

    (i) A bill to allow gun silencers (H.R.367 - Hearing Protection Act of 2017) https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/house-bill/367

There is some debate as to how quiet silencers are, but even if they are still audible, we should nevertheless not be allowing devices that reduce the sound of firearms. The louder they are, the greater their warning sound.

    (ii) H.R.38 - Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017

https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/house-bill/38

“Concealed Carry Reciprocity” would force every state to recognize and accept the concealed carry standards of every other state, no matter how weak or nonexistent those standards may be. Put another way: It would effectively turn the weakest state’s laws into nationwide laws, making the weakest link the law of the land.

There have been recent reports that these two pro-gun bills may not be brought to the House floor for a vote anytime soon, but we must keep the pressure on Congress.

For those who live in the 10th congressional district, Barbara Comstock is a co-sponsor of both of these bills. Contact her and let her know that you oppose both bills, demand that she withdraw her sponsorship, and tell her to vote against them.

    (iii) On Wednesday, October 4th Democratic Senator Feinstein introduced the Automatic Gun Fire Prevention Act, a bill to close a loophole that allows semi-automatic weapons to be easily modified to fire at the rate of automatic weapons. Senator Kaine is a co-sponsor of the bill.

-- Call your MoCs to allow for research on gun violence and the effects of gun control. In the past couple decades, Republicans have not only voted in favor of looser gun restrictions, but have also voted to prevent any research on firearms.

In the wake of the Las Vegas shooting, Minority Speaker Pelosi asked for a vote to create a bipartisan Select Committee on Gun Violence, but House Republicans voted 231 to 189 to block an up-or-down vote on creating this select committee.

http://thehill.com/blogs/floor-action/house/353462-pelosi-urges-ryan-to-create-select-committee-on-gun-violence

https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/house-resolution/367

Additionally, (if you don’t already know) Republicans have barred the CDC from even collecting statistics about gun violence.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2017/10/04/gun-violence-research-has-been-shut-down-for-20-years/?utm_term=.5529ffe2c154

Call your MoCs to support legislation to investigate and research mass shootings, firearms, and ways to reduce gun deaths.

For more information:

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/oct/03/americans-gun-laws-lobbyists-national-rifle-association

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/moms-demand-action-everytown-flex-grassroots-muscle_us_59af3adce4b0c50640cd62f0

https://www.wired.com/story/las-vegas-shooting-automatic-rifle/

Call MoCs to oppose H.R. 36 the "Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act," which would make it a crime for a healthcare provider to perform an abortion after 20 weeks.

Posted 10/3/2017

Next week, on October 3rd, the U.S. House of Representatives will be voting on Republican Rep. Trent Franks' Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act (H.R. 36), which would make it a crime for a healthcare provider to perform or attempt to perform abortions after 20 weeks gestation. The provider could get up to 5 years in prison. No penalty is proposed for a woman undergoing a prohibited abortion. A similar bill passed in the U.S. House in 2015 but was subsequently defeated by the Senate. This bill has 170 co-sponsors, 4 of whom are Democrats.  Virginia Republicans, Griffith (9th District), Goodlatte (6th), Wittman (1st) and Brat (7th) are also co-sponsors. Here is the text of the bill from Congress.gov:

“This bill amends the federal criminal code to make it a crime for any person to perform or attempt to perform an abortion if the probable post-fertilization age of the fetus is 20 weeks or more. A violator is subject to criminal penalties—a fine, up to five years in prison, or both. The bill provides exceptions for an abortion: (1) that is necessary to save the life of the pregnant woman, or (2) when the pregnancy is the result of rape or incest. A physician who performs or attempts to perform an abortion under an exception must comply with specified requirements. A woman who undergoes a prohibited abortion may not be prosecuted for violating or conspiring to violate the provisions of this bill.”

Not only does this bill infringe upon reproductive rights but it ignores why some prospective mothers and fathers decide to seek abortions at or beyond the twenty-week mark of a pregnancy. http://bit.ly/2ysugcp  This bill does not make exception for an abortion for fetal anomalies which are incompatible with life. Abortions at or after 20 weeks are a low-incidence occurrence with the Centers for Disease Control estimating that only 1.3% of all abortions occur this late in a pregnancy. This bill most likely is only one piece of legislation in a planned onslaught against legal abortion. Note the histrionic title: there is no reference to fetus pain capability in the actual text of the bill. It is important to keep our message to congress strong and consistent in our opposition to any infringement upon keeping abortion safe, legal and accessible.

For more information:

http://thehill.com/policy/healthcare/352454-house-to-vote-on-20-week-abortion-ban

Representatives Beyer and Connolly historically have advocated for safe, legal and unrestricted abortion. Representative Comstock does not and has historically been in favor of restricting abortion services. Call or e-mail your Member of Congress and ask that they oppose H.R. 36.

Suggested script:   My name is _______and as your constituent, I am asking you to vote against criminalizing abortion, either for the healthcare providers or the recipient. Please vote “NO” to H.R. 36 on October 3rd.  Thank you.

 

Tell Congress to Reject Trump's Record-Low Cap on Refugee Admissions

Posted 10/2/2017

The Trump administration plans to cap the number of refugees the U.S. will accept next year at 45,000, setting a historically low limit on the number of people who can resettle in the United States after fleeing persecution in their own countries.  This cap is far lower than the 110,000 limit President Barack Obama had placed on refugees last year, and the 75,000 limit resettlement agencies said was necessary to begin to meet humanitarian needs around the world. If this stands, America’s reputation as a safe haven will be tarnished for years to come.

After learning of Trump’s decision, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), Ranking Member of the Senate Immigration Subcommittee, released the following statement:

“At a time when our world is facing the worst refugee crisis in history, it is unconscionable that the Trump Administration is setting the lowest refugee ceiling in history.  Since our nation’s tragic failure to help Jewish refugees fleeing Hitler, we have set an example for the world by providing safe haven to the world’s most vulnerable people.  Slashing the number of refugees admitted into the United States by more than half is an abdication of this bipartisan commitment.  The Administration should focus on the real threats to our security, not innocent men, women, and children who are fleeing war and terrorism and are the most carefully vetted of all travelers to the United States.”

For more information:

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-immigration-refugees/trump-administration-proposes-to-cut-refugee-cap-to-45000-idUSKCN1C22RN

Call your two Senators and your Member of Congress and urge them to pass legislation that would increase the number of refugees allowed to settle in the United States.

Suggested Script

I’m a constituent from [City, State], and I urge you to pass legislation that demonstrates strong support for refugee resettlement to the United States and rejects the shameful decision made by this administration. My community stands ready to welcome refugees. We believe that welcoming and protecting refugees makes us stronger as a community and as a country. To remain the global humanitarian leader we have been since World War II, we must continue to welcome refugees who flee their homes in search of freedom from violence and persecution. People’s lives and futures are at stake. Congress must act to pass legislation to welcome refugees to the U.S. in fiscal year 2018 at a level proportionate to the crisis and in line with our capacity, history and values.

Urge your MoCs to support the DREAM Act, not the SUCCEED Act

Posted 10/2/2017

Every week seems to bring a new issue to rally around, but let’s not lose sight of past issues that the news cycle has passed over. DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) is still being rescinded and we need a legislative fix by March of 2018 to protect undocumented immigrants who were brought to the US as children.

An even more anti-immigrant bill called the SUCCEED Act (S.1852) has been proposed. It may appear to be very similar to the DREAM Act, but the SUCCEED Act requires immigrant youth to sign a voluntary deportation order that subjects them to automatic deportation if they are unable to meet the requirements.

United We Dream has put together a nice infographic that explains the differences between the two bills:

http://bit.ly/2xwcfNE

For more information:

http://www.npr.org/2017/09/29/554073453/democrats-try-to-force-dream-act-vote-as-gop-rolls-out-conservative-daca-fix

Call on your MoCs to support the DREAM Act (S.1615 and H.R. 3440)

Suggested Script:

Hi, my name is ________. I live _________, and I am your constituent. I am calling because I am concerned about undocumented immigrants who were brought to the U.S. when they were children. Congress only has a few months to act and protect these young people and offer them a path towards legal status. I urge you to support the DREAM Act over the more recently proposed SUCCEED Act. The two have some similarities, but the DREAM Act is more merciful as it does not require automatic deportation if the requirements are not met. The DREAM Act is already a bipartisan effort and incorporates the views of both Republican and Democratic sides. Thank you.

Call on MOCs to OPPOSE 45'S TAX REFORM

Posted 09/18/2017

In promoting his plan to overhaul of the nation’s tax system, President Donald Trump claimed “the rich will not be gaining at all with this plan.” But the tax proposal his administration outlined in April would heavily benefit high-income taxpayers, and Trump hasn’t revealed any changes to it.

The  Trump administration released a one-page outline in April that included these major tax changes:

(i) Abolish the estate tax, which now falls only on those with assets worth more than $5.49 million (double that for couples). The estate tax only applies to estates worth over $5.5 million. That means 99.8 percent of estates (the property someone leaves when they die) are already exempt from the estate tax, and the Republican tax plan would only help the remaining wealthiest 0.2 percent of estates. Simply put, this is a way to keep wealth concentrated in the hands of a small number of billionaire families, much like how Trump generated his own fortune.

(ii) Cut the corporate tax from 35 percent to 15 percent. Get used to hearing this key Republican talking point: “The US has the highest corporate tax rate in the world.” When they say that, they’re referring to the statutory tax rate, which is 35%. (Statutory meaning the amount they’re supposed to pay under the law.) But what they actually pay, the effective rate, is about 14% according to the Government Accountability Office, which is comparable to the rest of the world.  There is little evidence the statutory corporate rate affects the competitiveness of US corporations. In fact, corporate profits are near all-time high. Despite all of this, Republicans want to slash the corporate tax rate from 35% to 15%, which is estimated to cost $2.4 trillion in revenue. Even worse, cutting the corporate rate almost exclusively benefits wealthy individuals and could actually hurt workers in the long run.

(iii) Abolish the alternative minimum tax, which is designed to ensure that the most wealthy taxpayers pay a minimum tax. According to his 2005 tax return, Trump paid $38 million in taxes on $153 million in income; $31 million of his tax payment was due to the alternative minimum tax. Had it not been in place, his effective tax rate for that year would have been just 3.5 percent—far below what most middle-class families pay.

(iv) Collapse the seven income tax brackets, which range from 10 percent to 39.6 percent, to three (10 percent, 25 percent and 35 percent).

In July, the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center estimated the impact of a “Trump-like plan.” Howard Gleckman, a senior fellow at the tax center, wrote that middle-income households (those earning between $50,000 and $86,000) would see an average tax cut of about $1,900 or about 3 percent. But the top 1 percent (those earning more than $732,000) would get an average tax cut of $270,000 or nearly 18 percent, and the top 0.1 percent would see a 20 percent tax cut. Simply put, this is a way to keep wealth concentrated in the hands of a small number of billionaire families, much like how Trump generated his own fortune.

Trump’s tax plan, and the one proposed by House Speaker Paul Ryan, would increase the federal deficit by trillions of dollars. And since Republicans in the Senate want to pass the bill through reconciliation, they’ll have to offset these huge tax cuts for the wealthy and corporations with cuts to Medicare and Medicaid and other programs that benefit the middle class in order to make them permanent. Let your MOCs know that you oppose Trump’s proposed tax changes.

Suggested Script:

“Hi __________. My name is ________ and I live __________, and I am your constituent. I am calling today because I am concerned about President Trump’s proposed tax reform. Corporate profits have never been higher. It’s unfair that many rich corporations are paying less in taxes than people like me.  You should oppose any tax plan that cuts taxes for corporations or leaves corporate tax loopholes in place. Furthermore, you should oppose any tax plan that jeopardizes Medicare and Medicaid and other programs that benefit the middle class and working class to pay for tax cuts for the wealthy and corporations. Finally, without President Trump revealing his tax returns, the American people have no way of knowing how much tax cuts will benefit Trump and his businesses. The taxpayers deserve to know if our hard-earned money is going to the President’s personal gain. I ask you to oppose any tax cuts until President Trump release his tax returns so that the American people can fully understand how it will personally benefit him and his businesses. Thank you.”

Call DHS and MoC to OPPOSE THE BORDER WALL

Posted 09/18/2017

On September 12th, Elaine Duke, the Acting Secretary of Homeland Security, announced that the Department of Homeland Security will be rebuilding a 3-mile stretch of a border wall between California and Mexico, and that it would waive any and all obligations to follow any laws that stood in the way. In particular the laws that she announced waivers for are those that protect our environment, our wildlife, historical sites, and Native American grave sites.

Contact Elaine Duke at 202-282-8000 or 202-282-8495 and tell her that building a wall should not supersede all of our laws. Tell her to respect our environment, wildlife, historical sites, and Native American grave sites.

Then, contact your MoCs to tell them that you (1) oppose Elaine Duke’s waivers of our nation’s laws in order to erect a border wall, and (2) oppose any funding in this year’s budget for a border wall. The border wall is a xenophobic and anti-immigrant symbol. It is extremely costly to taxpayers, and it’s effectiveness is questionable.

For more information, https://www.dcreport.org/2017/09/12/homeland-security-chief-im-above-the-law/

For the Federal Register notice:

https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2017-19234

Suggested Script for your MoCs:

“Hi __________. My name is ________ and I live __________, and I am your constituent. I am calling today because I am concerned the Department of Homeland Security’s recent post in the Federal Register announcing a series of waivers for the purposes of re-building a three mile stretch of border wall between California and Mexico. I oppose these waivers and ask you to hear my concerns and use your voice to amplify my concerns. The long list of waived laws generally protect our environment, our wildlife, our historical sites, and Native American grave sites. Moreover, I generally oppose a border wall between the US and Mexico. I ask you to oppose any budget that includes funding for a border wall. Thank you.”

Ask MoCs to SUPPORT HIGHER EDUCATION FOR HOMELESS YOUTH

Posted 09/18/2017

Ask Virginia U.S. Representatives and Senators to vote for the passage of HR 3740 or S 1795, a bipartisan bill to lift financial and other application barriers to higher education experienced by homeless youth and those in the foster system.  

From a press release from U.S. Representative Catherine Clark who has introduced this bill in the House:

Congresswoman Katherine Clark (D-MA) introduced the Higher Education Access and Success for Homeless and Foster Youth Act of 2017. Clark’s bill lifts barriers to college entrance often experienced by homeless and foster youth facing questions about their independent status and financial eligibility. In U.S. public schools, more than 1.3 million students are homeless and nearly 428,000 are in foster care. These students often lack the support network they need to navigate a complicated higher education and financial aid system. Clark’s bill requires the U.S. Department of Education to help resolve questions about a student’s independence and ensure federal programs identify, recruit, and prepare homeless and foster youth for college. The Higher Education Access and Success and Foster Youth Act also asks colleges and universities to streamline eligibility determinations for financial aid and encourages states to grant in-state tuition for homeless and foster students.

The full press release can be found here:  http://katherineclark.house.gov/index.cfm/press-releases?ID=23FC13D4-DECD-4016-92CC-73AFC93F88A9.  

The House version of the bill can be found here:  https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/house-bill/3740?q=%7B%22search%22%3A%5B%22hr+3740%22%5D%7D&r=1

The Senate version of the bill can be found here:  https://congress.gov/115/bills/s1795/BILLS-115s1795is.pdf

The bipartisan, bicameral bill is cosponsored by Congressman Bobby Scott (D-VA; Ranking Member on the House Committee on Education and the Workforce), Congresswoman Susan Davis (D-CA), Congressman Don Young (R-AK) in the U.S. House, and Senator Patty Murray (D-WA; Ranking Member on the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions) and Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) in the U.S. Senate.  The bills are currently in Committee in the House and in the Senate.  Senate Tim Kaine services on the Senate Committee on Health, Labor, Education and Pensions in which S. 1795 is being debated.

Suggested content for Senator Kaine:  “Dear Senator Kaine, As your constituent I want to thank you for your tireless efforts on behalf of all Virginians.  As you know, S. 1795, a bill to remove barriers to higher education for homeless youth, is currently in the Committee on which you serve.  Please support this bill by your vote for passage and by educating other Committee members about its importance. Thank you.”

For Senator Warner and members of the House of Representatives:

Dear ____________“As your constituent, I am writing to ask for your vote to pass (choose S. 1795 or H. 3740) when it is passed out of committee for a floor vote.  Homeless youth and those in foster care deserve to have financial and application barriers removed so they can attend college. Thank you for supporting access to higher education for all youth.”

CONTACT INFORMATION FOR OUR MEMBERS OF CONGRESS

Senator Tim Kaine:

DC Office: 202-224-4024 or Manassas Office: 703-361-3192

https://www.kaine.senate.gov/contact

Senator Mark Warner:

DC Office: 202-224-2023 or Vienna Office: 703-442-0670

https://www.warner.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/contact

Don Beyer -- 8th District

DC Office: (202) 225-4376 or Alexandria Office: (703) 658-5403

https://beyer.house.gov/contact/

Gerald E. Connolly --11th District

DC Office (202) 225-1492 or Annandale Office: (703) 256-3071

https://connolly.house.gov/contact/

Barbara Comstock - 10th District

DC Office:  (202) 225-5136 or Loudoun Office Phone: (202) 225-5136

https://comstock.house.gov/contact

If your House Representative isn’t listed above, see:

https://www.house.gov/representatives/find/

Call your MoCs to support the DREAM Act / American Hope Act.

Posted 09/11/201

Yes, we are calling on you once again to support the DREAMers, undocumented immigrants who were brought to the United States when they were children. These kids grew up here, and are American in every sense, except on paper.

As you have undoubtedly heard, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced on September 5, that, six months from now, the Trump administration will the end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program (DACA) — a program that has protected nearly 800,000 undocumented young adults from deportation.

In 2012, President Obama created the DACA program through his executive powers. The problem with executive orders is that they are easy for the following administration to undo, as we have just witnessed. We need to call upon Congress to act and protect the DREAMers.

As is common in Congress, there are in fact TWO similar bills to protect these undocumented young adults from deportation -- one that starts in the Senate and one that starts in the House. The Senate version is the bipartisan Durbin-Graham DREAM Act (S. 1615), and the House version is the American Hope Act (H.R. 3691).

Action:  Call Senator Kaine and Senator Warner (currently not co-sponsors) and tell them to co-sponsor the bipartisan Durbin-Graham “DREAM Act” (S. 1615) to create a legislative fix to the predicament of these young Americans, and take their future out of Trump’s hands.

Senator Tim Kaine:

DC Office: 202-224-4024 or Manassas Office: 703-361-3192

https://www.kaine.senate.gov/contact

Senator Mark Warner:

DC Office: 202-224-2023 or Vienna Office: 703-442-0670

https://www.warner.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/contact

If you live in Rep. Barbara Comstock’s 10th District, tell her to co-sponsor Rep. Gutierrez’s American Hope Act (H.R. 3591) to give those with DACA and others who arrived in the United States as children a path to permanent legal status and eventual citizenship.

Barbara Comstock - 10th District

DC Office:  (202) 225-5136 or Loudoun Office Phone: (202) 225-5136

https://comstock.house.gov/contact

If you live in Rep. Beyer’s 8th District or Rep. Connolly’s 11th District, thank them for being a co-sponsor of the American Hope Act (H.R. 3591).

Don Beyer -- 8th District

DC Office: (202) 225-4376 or Alexandria Office: (703) 658-5403

https://beyer.house.gov/contact/

Gerald E. Connolly --11th District

DC Office (202) 225-1492 or Annandale Office: (703) 256-3071

http://connolly.house.gov

For more information, see

https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2017/9/5/16228664/daca-explained-one-simple-cartoon

http://www.npr.org/2017/09/05/548754723/5-things-you-should-know-about-daca

 

Call on Congress to extend the Children’s Health Insurance Program.

Posted 09/11/2017

The Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) currently covers over 8 million low-income children in working families with income too high to qualify for Medicaid.  Together with Medicaid, CHIP has helped bring children’s coverage rates to a historic high of 95 percent as of 2015. While many of the parents of CHIP-enrolled children now receive their coverage through the Affordable Care Act’s marketplace, children have better access to critical benefits through CHIP than through most marketplace plans. CHIP also provides vital coverage for nearly 2 million children in families affected by the ACA’s “family glitch.”

Federal funding for CHIP expires on September 30, and unless Congress acts quickly, states will have to start winding down their programs, including sending parents notices warning that their children may lose coverage. Fortunately, CHIP has bipartisan support.  When the Senate Finance Committee held a CHIP hearing on September 7, witnesses and Senators from both parties spoke to the difference that CHIP makes in children's lives.  But Congress needs to act soon.

Action:  Call Senators Kaine and Warner and your representative and ask them to support a clean five-year reauthorization of CHIP before it expires on September 30.

Senator Tim Kaine:

DC Office: 202-224-4024 or Manassas Office: 703-361-3192

https://www.kaine.senate.gov/contact

Senator Mark Warner:

DC Office: 202-224-2023 or Vienna Office: 703-442-0670

https://www.warner.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/contact

For more information:

https://ccf.georgetown.edu/2017/08/03/what-every-policy-maker-needs-to-know-about-the-childrens-health-insurance-program-chip-a-refresher/

https://www.momsrising.org/blog/tell-congress-act-quickly-to-extend-chip

 

Why Virginia Elections Matter!

Posted 09/11/2017

Commit to vote on November 7, learn why the 2017 Virginia elections matter, spread the word to 5 of your friends.

On November 7, we will vote for all 100 open House of Delegate seats, Governor, Lt. Governor and Attorney General.  Educate yourself and inform your friends and neighbors about why the 2017 Election in Virginia matters …regionally and nationwide.  The Virginia House of Delegates needs to gain 17 Democratic seats in this election. This brief video gives you a quick overview of the importance of this election:  http://www.whyvamatters2017.com/

Action:  Forward the video clip to 5 of your Virginia friends and remind them to vote.  Make a commitment to vote on November 7, even where your delegate may run unopposed.  Low voter turnout will work against the success of all progressives running in this election. Commit to voting for progressive candidates for Governor, Lt. Governor and Attorney General. Spread the word on your Facebook page, Twitter or other social media platform.

From Ballotpedia.org: A lot is at stake in the 2017 state legislative elections. Virginia could become a Republican trifecta. The 2017 state legislative elections also have a national subtext as the first general legislative elections to take place since Republican Donald Trump took office as president of the United States in January 2017. Heading into the general election, Republicans in the Virginia House of Delegates hold a 66-34 majority. Democrats would need to gain 17 seats in order to take control of the chamber, while Republicans would need to gain one seat to obtain a veto-proof supermajority. The following 29 races affect Northern Virginia.  Where the incumbent is not running, assume he/she is retiring.  Some incumbents are running unopposed. Don’t know your district:  https://www.virginia.gov/services/whos-my-legislator/

District

Incumbent

Party

Candidates

2

Mark Dudenhefer

Republican

Laquan Austion (R) Jennifer Carroll Foy (D)

13

Bob Marshall

Republican

Bob Marshall (R)  Danica Roem (D)

18

Michael Webert

Republican

Michael Webert (R) Tristan Shields (D)

Will King (G)

28

Bill Howell

Republican

Joshua Cole (D)  Robert Michael Thomas, (R)

30

Nicholas Freitas

Republican

Ben Hixon (D)  Nicholas Freitas (R)

31

Scott Lingamfelter

Republican

Elizabeth Guzman (D)  Scott Lingamfelter (R)

Nathan Larson (I)

32

Tag Greason

Republican

David Reid (D)  Tag Greason (R)

33

Dave LaRock

Republican

Tia Walbridge (D)Dave LaRock (R)

34

Kathleen Murphy

Democratic

Kathleen Murphy (D)Cheryl A. Buford (R)

35

Mark Keam

Democratic

Mark Keam (D)

36

Ken Plum

Democratic

Ken Plum (D)

37

David Bulova

Democratic

David Bulova (D)

38

Kaye Kory

Democratic

Kaye Kory (D)  Paul Haring (R)

39

Vivian Watts

Democratic

Vivian Watts (D)

40

Tim Hugo

Republican

Donte Tanner (D)  Tim Hugo (R)

41

Eileen Filler-Corn

Democratic

Eileen Filler-Corn (D)

42

Dave Albo

Republican

Kathy Tran (D)  Lolita Mancheno-Smoak (R)

43

Mark Sickles

Democratic

Mark Sickles (D)

44

Paul Krizek

Democratic

Paul Krizek (D)

45

Mark Levine

Democratic

Mark Levine (D)

46

Charniele Herring

Democratic

Charniele Herring (D)

47

Patrick Hope

Democratic

Patrick Hope (D)

48

Rip Sullivan

Democratic

Rip Sullivan (D)

49

Alfonso Lopez

Democratic

Alfonso Lopez (D)  Adam Roosevelt (R)

50

Jackson Miller

Republican

Lee Jin Carter (D)  Jackson Miller (R)

51

Rich Anderson

Republican

Hala Ayala (D)  Rich Anderson (R)

52

Luke Torian

Democratic

Luke Torian (D)

53

Marcus Simon

Democratic

Marcus Simon (D)  Mike Casey (I)

67

James LeMunyon

Republican

Karrie Delaney (D)  James LeMunyon (R)

 

Tell Your MoCs to Stand Up for Childhood Arrivals and Co-Sponsor S.1615 and H.R. 3591

Posted 9/3/2017

In 2012, President Obama created the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program that offers protection from deportation to individuals who were brought to the United States as children. These kids grew up here, and are American in every sense, except on paper. The program has allowed approximately 800,000 young people the opportunity to live and work lawfully in the U.S. Now, 95% are currently working or in school, 90% got a driver’s license or state ID, 54% bought their first car, and 12% have even bought their first home.

But this program is in peril because a minority of anti-immigrant state officials threatens to unravel the entire program in the courts. Led by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, there are 10 states (TX, AL, AR, ID, KS, LA, NE, SC, TN, WV) that are calling for an end to the DACA program. The have given the Trump Administration an ultimatum: get rid of DACA by September 5, 2017, or they will make sure a judge does.

Removing DACA protections from these hundreds of thousands of young people would turn their lives upside down, and harm the communities where they live, work and study. The only beneficiary would be the for-profit private immigrant detention complex and Trump’s runaway deportation machine, which would embark on a new taxpayer-funded mission to apprehend, process, detain and remove these young people, many of whom have little ties to their birth countries.

Like so many other issues, Congress has the power to remedy this situation by passing legislation to protect these immigrant youth.

Call Senator Kaine & Senator Warner  and tell them to co-sponsor the bipartisan Durbin-Graham “DREAM Act” (S. 1615) to create a legislative fix to the predicament of these young Americans, and take their future out of Trump’s hands.

Senator Tim Kaine:

DC Office: 202-224-4024 or Manassas Office: 703-361-3192

https://www.kaine.senate.gov/contact

Senator Mark Warner:

DC Office: 202-224-2023 or Vienna Office: 703-442-0670

https://www.warner.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/contact

If you live in Rep. Barbara Comstock’s 10th District, tell her to co-sponsor Rep. Gutierrez’s American Hope Act (H.R. 3591) give those with DACA and others who arrived in the United States as children a path to permanent legal status and eventual citizenship.

Barbara Comstock - 10th District

DC Office:  (202) 225-5136 or Loudoun Office Phone: (202) 225-5136

https://comstock.house.gov/contact

If you live in Rep. Beyer’s 8th District or Rep. Connolly’s 11th District, thank him for being a co-sponsor of the American Hope Act (H.R. 3591).

Don Beyer -- 8th District

DC Office: (202) 225-4376 or Alexandria Office: (703) 658-5403

https://beyer.house.gov/contact/

Gerald E. Connolly --11th District

DC Office (202) 225-1492 or Annandale Office: (703) 256-3071

http://connolly.house.gov

The legislation provides a one-time “provisional protected presence” to DREAMers eligible for DACA that would provide temporary protection from deportation and an employment authorization document. A current DACA recipient would receive provisional protected presence until the expiration date of his or her DACA status and could apply for provisional protected presence prior to that expiration. An individual who is not a DACA recipient, but who is eligible for DACA, could also apply for provisional protected presence.

Help those affected by Harvey: Donate & Demand that Congress pass disaster relief

Posted 09/03/2017

DONATE:

There are many ways to help those affected by Hurricane Harvey. If you haven’t already donated, please consider doing so. Here’s a list of organizations that you may consider donating to. They range from general assistance to helping undocumented persons to animal and pet rescue.

https://www.indivisibleguide.com/blog/message-indivisible-houston-help-us-resist-harvey/#DONATE

CALL CONGRESS:

Congress will be back in session on Tuesday, September 5th. The first thing that Congress should do when they return from August recess is pass a disaster relief aid package. This package should provide adequate funding to respond to immediate needs, like food and water, as well as longer term needs like the years of rebuilding that will be required. Additionally, disaster relief must also take into account that communities of color have been the hardest hit, with adequate funding to help individuals recover and to make sure that the public services communities rely on every day are rebuilt fully and promptly.

Call Senator Kaine, Senator Warner, and your House Representative to quickly pass disaster relief for those affected by Hurricane Harvey.

 

Senator Tim Kaine:

DC Office: 202-224-4024 or Manassas Office: 703-361-3192

https://www.kaine.senate.gov/contact

 

Senator Mark Warner:

DC Office: 202-224-2023 or Vienna Office: 703-442-0670

https://www.warner.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/contact

Don Beyer -- 8th District

DC Office: (202) 225-4376 or Alexandria Office: (703) 658-5403

https://beyer.house.gov/contact/

Gerald E. Connolly --11th District

DC Office (202) 225-1492 or Annandale Office: (703) 256-3071

http://connolly.house.gov

Barbara Comstock - 10th District

DC Office:  (202) 225-5136 or Loudoun Office Phone: (202) 225-5136

https://comstock.house.gov/contact

If you don’t know your House Representative, please visit:

http://www.house.gov/representatives/find/

For more information and more ways to help on Harvey, please visit:

https://www.indivisibleguide.com/resource/responding-hurricane-harvey/

 

 

immigrantS and muslims are welcome

Print out a sign.  Post it in your window.

Trump is threatening refugees, immigrants, and Muslims and it's up to us to speak in one fearless voice:  NEVER.  Not on our watch.  Please pring the sign that works best for your and then fill out a short survery to let us know how many and where you hope to hang them.  Give some neighbors.  

Posted 1/29/2017

 

read the indivisible guide

https://www.indivisibleguide.com/

Written by a group of former Congressional staffers, this guide offers a step-by-step guide for individuals, groups, and organizations looking to replicate the Tea Party’s success in getting Congress to listen to a small, vocal, dedicated group of constituents. The guide is intended to be equally useful for stiffening Democratic spines and weakening pro-Trump Republican resolve.