Calls to Action: Week of August 14th

Condemn Domestic Terrorism by White Supremacists (via Austin Indivisible): ALL WEEK!
This week we need to hold our representatives accountable for their responses to the violent acts of white supremacist domestic terrorism in Charlottesville. This is not the time for ambiguity; there is a clear choice to be made between right and wrong. Check to see what your representatives are saying, and then call them with either praise or condemnation. Some good rules of thumb are:

Lawmakers should:

  • Label the violence “domestic terrorism”
  • Call the perpetrators “white supremacists”

Lawmakers should not:

  • Be ambiguous
  • Leave any room for white supremacists to interpret their statement as tacit approval.

Examples of ambiguity:

  • “We must stand against all who try to divide us with hatred and bigotry.” (Dan Patrick)
  •  “There is no place for hate in this country” (Roger Williams)
  •  “We ALL must be united & condemn all that hate stands for. There is no place for this
    kind of violence in America. Let’s come together as one!” (Donald Trump)

The Texas Tribune is keeping a list of the responses of Texas politicians to the terrorist attack in
Charlottesville.

It’s time to demand better from our elected officials. Call those who have been reluctant to
strongly condemn this racist violence.

This might also be a good time to call Rep. Flores (979-703-4037) to ask, “Do you still support Donald Trump, who has refused, repeatedly, to condemn the white supremacists who support him?” You might also want to ask whether Rep. Flores will join calls for the White House to remove high-level advisors linked to white nationalist causes: Steven Bannon, Sebastian Gorka, and Steven Miller.

 

Defend and Protect DACA (via Austin Indivisible): August 14th 

The Obama-era program Deferred Actions for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), which allows some undocumented immigrants who arrived in the U.S. as children (DREAMers) to apply for temporary work permits, Social Security numbers and protection from deportation, is very much under threat. We need to fight back to prevent the needless deportation of people who came to the US as children.

The Indivisible Project has great resources on DACA and pending legislation that stands to affect “DACAmented” youth. They will be doing a Facebook Live at 7:30 pm on Monday to provide more detail.

 

Here are some actions you can take this week to help protect DACA:

 

  1. Call Rep. Flores (979-703-4037) and ask him to co-sponsor Rep. Gutierrez’s American Hope Act (HR 3591). This act would give DREAMers who arrived in the U.S. as children a path to permanent legal status and citizenship. Those who listened to Rep. Flores’s teleconferences last month heard him say that he supported a path to legal residency for DREAMers, so let’s see him deliver on this.

 

  1. Call Sen. Cruz (512-916-5834) and Sen. Cornyn (512-469-6034) and ask them to co-sponsor the bipartisan Durbin-Graham Act “DREAM Act” (S 1615). This would provide further protections for the DACA program and take its future out of the president’s hands.

 

  1. Call/contact/protest Texas AG Ken Paxton (512.463.2100). Paxton is one of the 10 state attorney generals who have asked the government to end DACA. This is particularly shameful given that Texas is home to the second highest number of DACA recipients nationally, and over a quarter of a million Texans are eligible for the program. For those who can make the trek to Austin, United We Stand is organizing a rally to defend DACA on Tuesday, August 15th at 3pm outside of Paxton’s office. See the Facebook event for more information.

 

Protect Voting Rights with 2020 Census Funding (via 5calls.org)

 

The information gathered during the 2020 Census will be used to inform state redistricting efforts, allocate seats within the House of Representatives, and provide demographic information to inform policy decisions at all levels of government. However, the House and Senate Appropriations Committees have not provided sufficient funds to adequately prepare for the 2020 Census. An accurate census count is essential to ensure traditionally under-counted groups, like Latinx, Black, low-income, and non-English-speaking households, are adequately documented. Without robust and accurate data, the 2020 Census could be used to weaken the voting power of voters of color via partisan gerrymandering and systematically under-fund jurisdictions with larger proportions of non-White residents.

 

A well-supported and well-funded 2020 Census is critical to the integrity of our democracy. The 2018 Commerce, Justice, and Science Appropriations bills (H.R.3267 / S.1662) have passed both House and Senate Committees with insufficient funding levels for the Census Bureau (about $300 million below requested amount). They now go to the full chambers for further debate and votes.

 

Call Rep. Flores (979-703-4037) and ask him to back a spending bill that will provide adequate census funding.

Here is sample script from 5calls:

Hi, my name is [NAME] and I’m a constituent from Bryan/College Station. I’m calling today because I’m very concerned about the lack of adequate funding for the 2020 Census Bureau. I ask that Rep. Bill Flores work to pass a 2018 spending bill that gives the bureau its requested funding levels so that it can ensure a fair and accurate 2020 Census.

Thank you for your time and attention.

[IF LEAVING A VOICEMAIL: please leave your full street address to ensure your call is tallied]