Yesterday’s vigil and more YOU can do!

Yesterday’s vigil was a huge success!  Thank you to Brazos Sanctuary Coalition and the Brazos Interfaith Immigration Network for organizing and thanks to all of those who attended.  We complied a video to show that BCS stands against family separation #FamiliesBelongTogether. 

But we are NOT stopping now! 

Despite the fact that Flores says he will support the two new anti-immigration laws currently under consideration in House, we must say that we, his constituents, do NOT support these proposals that hold Dreamers hostage in exchange for massive spending on the border wall and radical reductions in the number of diverse immigrants entering this country. Call Flores today to tell him that these bills will hurt his constituents and do nothing to stop the terror currently facing families at our border.

Call: 979-703-4037 

Here is a sample call script from Indivisible:

Caller: Hi! My name is [name] and I’m calling from [part of state]. I’m calling today to tell [Representative] to vote NO on both the Goodlatte bill and the Paul Ryan proposal. These bills are taking Dreamers hostage in exchange for dramatic spending on the wall and racist changes to our immigration system that prevent people from reuniting with their family members abroad. If [insert name here] supports immigrants, they will vote no.

Staffer: Thanks for calling. [Representative] wants to protect Dreamers, but [she / he] thinks it is important that we fix our broken immigration system and ensure that people are respecting and obeying our immigration laws. These bill will also end family separation at the border while also allowing the best and brightest to come and contribute our economy.

Caller: That is not true. Neither of these bills would stop family separations at the border. They would only make it worse and make it easier to deport parents and keep them from their kids. Dreamers cannot be a bargaining chip for Trump’s racist policies and border wall. If you care about Dreamers and immigrants, you must vote no on both of these proposals.

Staffer: I’ll pass along your thoughts to [Representative].

Caller: Please do, and please take down my contact information so you can let me know what [Representative] decides to do.

 

You can also CALL Cornyn and Cruz and tell them to SUPPORT the Keep Families Together Act.  For more and call script see HERE 

 

For more on the myths and misperceptions on this current crisis, see here

 

If you calling isn’t enough, WRITE A LETTER TO THE EDITOR!

This is a plea from a fellow #Resister”

“I am calling on all of my friends in the Bryan / College Station area to flood the The Eagle with Letters to the Editor denouncing current immigration policy. We need to make clear that we do not support the separation of families, mass deportation, building of tent cities, abuses by Border Patrol, or any of the other things we have recently seen in the news.

A letter to the editor is Max 300 words and does not take too long to write. Many people read this section & could create at least a bit of change.

I am writing one at the moment and I ask that you all join me and tell others to do so as well.”

 

Finally, show up to future events!

On Monday, June 25th at 10am, concerned parents and families are coming together at the Ursula Child Detention Center in McAllen, TX to voice their abhorrence for our federal government’s policy decision to separate children and parents at our nation’s borders. For more information see HERE.

On Thursday, June 28th, families, advocates, and allies will hold a rally in the park across the street from the Brownsville Federal Court, where immigrants are being prosecuted en masse for crossing the border into the United States, and then separated from their children.  There is a FREE BUS going to the event from Houston.  For more information and to sign up, see HERE.

We are MAKING A DIFFERENCE so DON’T GIVE UP THE FIGHT!

Call to Action: Stop Trump’s Cruel Immigration Policy

The news about Trump and Sessions new “zero-tolerance” immigration policy is heartbreaking.  The stories of families being ripped apart at our border completely contradict American values and human decency, period.  And now is not the time to turn away or go numb.  Do something TODAY to make a change.  Here are some ideas:

1) Call our representatives today to tell them we will NOT stand for this cruel behavior any longer:

Senator John Cornyn
512-469-6034

Senator Ted Cruz
512-916-5834

TX-17 Representative Bill Flores
979-703-4037

Here is a sample call script provided by Indivisible:

Caller: Hi! My name is [name] and I’m calling from [part of state]. I’m calling today to tell [Senator/Rep] to speak out against the Trump administration’s separation of immigrant families at the Southern border. This policy is cruel and inhumane and needs to stop.

Staffer: Thanks for calling. [Senator/Rep] is currently monitoring the situation and hopes to make an appropriate statement soon. I am happy to convey your message to [him/her/them].

Caller: Yes, please do. I think it’s very important for Congress to speak out against what is happening to families and to practice oversight on the Trump administration’s immigration actions. I’d also like [MoC] to cosponsor the HELP for Separated Children Act, which strengthens protections for immigrant families and children.

Staffer: We’ll be sure to to take a look and pass your message to [Senator/Rep].

Caller: Please do, and please take down my contact information so you can let me know what [Senator/Rep] decides to do.

 

2) SHOW UP!  A vigil is in the works for MONDAY, June 18th at Rep. Bill Flores’ office off Briarcrest Drive in Bryan.  4:30-6pm.   Tell Flores to make a stand to STOP SEPARATING FAMILIES.

 

3) Can’t attend?  Don’t have time?  DONATE!! 

A worthy organization that using donations very effectively is Together Rising.  Read more and donate here.

Other great options (that we have received from trusted immigration lawyers) are the Central American Legal Assistance (CALA) and Florence Immigrant and Refugee Rights Project.

 

4) Work to vote in members of Congress who will make a difference.  

Like Beto O’Rourke, who is now officially endorsed by Indivisible Volunteer for his campaign.  Volunteering can be as simple as sending text messages from the comfort of your living room.

OR you can help by becoming a deputized voter registrar and getting out the vote this election season.  The next training is Tuesday, June 19 at 5:45 pm! Call 979-361-5770 to reserve your seat.

Then join us at to register voters.  For information on times and locations contact Stephanie at: skoithan@gmail.com.

 

If you need more ideas on how to help, see here and the Indivisible Guide.

Just do ONE THING TODAY to make a difference. 

Thanks,

From the Indivisible BCS Team

 

ACA Enrollment Project

Looking to help drive enrollment for the ACA? 

Our good friends from Indivisible Austin have put together some useful tools to start getting involved right now!

The Affordable Care Act is still the law of the land. But…Trump and the GOP are actively sabotaging it. (The Center for Public Policy Priorities (CPPP) has a great writeup on this sabotage).

The next open enrollment period for the ACA Marketplace begins on November 1 and ends on December 15. The Cover Texas Now coalition (of which CPPP is a member) is enlisting volunteers to get people enrolled–in other words, to do the job that our government is failing to do.

Here are two ways to help this week:

  1. Register for this Oct. 6 webinar: “Become an ACA Coverage Champion: Marketplace Outreach and Enrollment 101”
  2. Fill out this volunteer form from Cover Texas Now; let them know you’re interested in helping

IMPORTANT information for the week of Sept 25th

Wow, what a week!  Between Trump’s comments on ​NFL protests, to North Korea, to the teetering fate of healthcare AND now a new travel ban​, there is SO MUCH to #RESIST!

We know it is getting overwhelming and exhausting, but there are small things you can do that can make a difference.  Take steps to becoming a better ally and fight for racial justice​, submit your story​ to tell our lawmakers about how you or someone you know would be affected by an ACA repeal, and act locally to protect our immigrant neighbors and friends.  A  good way to do this is by getting involved with the Brazos Interfaith Immigration Network.  Join them for an open house October 6 from 4:30-7:30pm at 107 Williamson Drive in Bryan​ to see how you can become a volunteer.  For Facebook event information, see here.

Another good way to resist locally is to support local candidates challenging the status quo and by getting out the vote!  Check out these ideas:

1) Come meet Dale Mantey​, challenger to Bill Flores, this Thursday at 6:30pm at James’ Studio 59​ in Bryan.

2) Become a deputized voter registrar​ (training TOMORROW!) Call (979) 361-5773​ to reserve your spot.

3) Register new voters at our voting rights workshop October 8th at 1pm at the Brazos Valley African American Museum.  (For Facebook event, see here​)  We also need people to pass out flyers for this event at local churches and in the neighborhood surrounding the museum, so if you can help, contact us ASAP!

​Last but not least, join Indivisible BCS this Friday at 5:30pm at the World of  Beer in College Station for a meeting/happy hour!  This will be a casual way to reconnect after a hectic summer.  

We hope to see you all on Friday!  Please feel free to email with comments and questions (or with offers to volunteer!) at any time.

Updates for the week of Sept 18th

Howdy BCS!

Thank you to those who stood up to fight for our DREAMers last week.  And thanks to all who have not given up the fight for progressive causes.

In case you have been feeling hopeless, do not forget that your actions DO MATTER. Check out this post from Indivisible Austin on how activism made a difference last week.

Again, the Indivisible BCS leadership has been a bit swamped lately, but we are planning a few great events for the fall.  First, we will hold a casual meeting at a local brewery within the coming weeks to meet new faces and plan for the fall election (date and location to be announced very soon!)

We are also planning a voting rights workshop (and pizza party!) at the Brazos Valley African American Museum on October 8th.  Please contact us if you can help with advertising or if you can chip in for pizza and drinks.  We will have an expert discuss our rights and the status of election laws in Texas and there will be an opportunity to talk with and register citizens to VOTE. If you can, please become a deputized voter registrar and help us!  The next training in Brazos county is Sept 26th. For more information, see here.

Finally, keep an eye out this week for developments on the latest effort to repeal the ACA.  TAKE 2 minutes of your week to call Cornyn and Cruz to OPPOSE this bill!

Here is a very easy script to serve as your guide: (courtesy of Indivisible Austin)

I want Senator [Cruz/Cornyn] to oppose Graham-Cassidy. The bill is just like other TrumpCare bills in that it destroys Medicaid by turning it into a capped system. This hurts children with disabilities, seniors, and even victims of natural disasters like Harvey and Irma. It also takes away funding to help people afford health insurance through the marketplace, and it punished states that did the right thing for their residents by expanding Medicaid.

Thanks for keeping up the fight, friends! We hope to see many of you very soon.

 

Calls to Action: Week of Sept. 11

Tuesday, Sept. 12th (From Indivisible Austin)

All Day. 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. Call Bill Flores (512-373-3378) and tell him to VOTE “NO!”

Sample Script courtesy of “5calls.org”

Hi, my name is [NAME] and I’m a constituent from [CITY, ZIP].

I’m calling to express my strong opposition to H.R.3697, the so-called “Criminal Alien Gang Member Removal Act,” which would label many non-violent undocumented immigrants as gang members and give the Department of Homeland Security the power to deport them without challenge. Rep. Bill Flores must vote NO on this undemocratic and immoral bill.

Thank you for your hard work answering the phones.

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

You can also urge our representatives to vote for bills to protect DACA kids.  Call U.S. Rep. Flores (979) 703-4037 and ask him to act on his previous statements in support of a path to citizenship for DREAMers and vote to pass HR 3591, the American Hope Act or similar bi-partisan legislation that will protect the more than 800,000 DREAMers affected and create a path to citizenship. Call U.S. Senators Cornyn (202-224-2934) and Cruz (202) 224-5922 and ask them to pas S 1615, the DREAM Act or similar bi-partisan legislation.

For those interested in staying informed and finding out more about how to help our local immigrant community in BCS, you can sign up for BIIN’s newsletter. Follow the link to BIIN’s website and enter your email in the banner at the bottom of the site: http://brazosimmigration.com/.

Wednesday Sept. 13th (Courtesy of “5calls.org”)

SPEAK UP TO MAINTAIN ENFORCEMENT OF TITLE IX SEXUAL ASSAULT PROTECTIONS

In a shameless speech at George Mason University on September 7th, Secretary Betsy DeVos announced that she will change how the Department of Education enforces Title IX (“9”) federal guidelines with respect to campus sexual assault. The 2011 guidelines, outlined in a Dear Colleague Letter (DCL), defines schools’ responsibilities in building a safe and responsive campus, clarifies the requirement that schools must independently investigate reports of sexual violence between students (regardless of the existence of a criminal investigation), and defines “preponderance of the evidence” as the burden of proof necessary when adjudicating sexual assault cases on campus. Calling this “overreach” and “weaponizing” by the federal government, DeVos will now roll back these vital protections.

Since 2011, many universities have overhauled their programs for reporting and investigating sexual assault, educating campuses on sex discrimination and providing support for victims of sexual violence. A rushed roll-back of these rules by the administration sends a terrible message to students and administrators and would undermine the protections universities, students and activists have worked so hard to implement. Earlier in the summer, twenty state Attorneys General wrote to Secretary DeVos to strongly oppose any roll-back of the Title IX protections and express concerns about the continuing role of Assistant Secretary Jackson.

Call the US Department of Education to insist that the 2011 guidelines should remain unchanged. It is still a matter of decency that institutions of higher education continue to prioritize and address campus sexual assault.

Call the Department of Education:

800-872-5327

Why you’re calling this office:

This organization is driving legislation related to the issue.

Sample script:

Hi, my name is [NAME] and I’m a concerned constituent from [CITY, STATE].

I’m calling to urge Secretary DeVos to maintain the critical Title IX (Title 9) protections for survivors of campus sexual assault as guided by the 2011 Dear Colleague Letter. This is a serious and troubling epidemic, and it is vital that schools maintain strong policy guidelines to protect its vulnerable students.

Thank you for your hard work answering the phones.

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

Sunday, Sept 17th 
 
Hurricane Harvey Relief Benefit Concert
 
Doors open at 7pm, shows at 8pm
Stafford Theater, downtown Bryan
 

The Hurricane Harvey Relief Benefit Concert features four Bryan/College Station bands whose members all have ties to the greater Houston community recently devastated by Hurricane Harvey.  Performers include The Ex-Optimists, Mutant Love, Electric Astronaut, and LUCA.
A minimum $5 donation is requested at the door to attend, but concert goers may donate more to the fund if they so desire.
Proceeds benefit the Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund, established by Houston mayor Sylvester Turner and the Greater Houston Community Foundation.

Calls to Action: September 4-8

Fight for DACA and Immigrants’ Rights

  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.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.

 

Break the Internet for DACA (via Women’s March)

 

  1. Tweet at the 9 AGs who are threatening to sue the federal government to end DACA, ESPECIALLY TEXAS AG KEN PAXTON. Use this tool to tweet at them
  2. Call and tweet at key members of Congress and demand that they publicly defend DACA. Use this document
  3. Allies: share a story of how a DACA recipient has positively contributed to this country. Use the hashtag #DefendDACA.
  4. On Tuesday morning, call these 9 AGs en masse. Use the telephone numbers here.
  5. For the most up-to-date info on defending DACA, follow our friends United We Dream and sign up for alerts on com.

 

LET’S BREAK THE INTERNET WITH LOVE AND SUPPORT FOR DACA!

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]

 

 

 

CTA for August 7-11th

Monday, August 7th: Protect Texas Schools

The Texas House overwhelmingly approved HB 2: a school finance bill that will provide an additional 1.8 billion to *public* schools. Now this issue bounces back to the Senate. Staffers have told us that there is no way school finance will pass through the Senate unless there is some small piece of a voucher program included (which would direct tax dollars to private schools).

Resistance succeeded in making the House back off their voucher plans. Let’s remind Sen. Schwertner that public dollars should only fund public schools. Call him (979-776-0222/512-463-0105) and let him know that even a small voucher program is unacceptable!

 

Tuesday, August 8th: Oppose the Republican budget resolution

[via ATX Indivisible]

While all eyes were on the Senate’s ACA repeal, the House Budget Committee passed a budget resolution that would give massive tax cuts to the wealthy by cutting the basics, like Medicare, Medicaid, and education. This would be terrible for our country, and especially terrible for the most vulnerable people who live here.

Let’s call Rep. Flores (979.703.4037) and ask for these commitments:

  1. Will you commit to me, your constituent, that you will oppose the FY18 budget resolution?
  2. Will you commit to me that you won’t use the threat of a shutdown to advance other policies and instead pass a clean Continuing Resolution?
  3. Will you promise me you won’t mess around with the full faith and credit of the United States, and that you’ll support a “clean raise”?
  4. Will you oppose any budget resolution or funding bill that has cuts to public education?

You might want to check out the Indivisible Project’s August Recess Toolkit for more information on the budget process.

While you are on the phone, why not ask staffers if you can come and discuss this and other issues with Rep. Flores in person? It is his job to represent us.

 

Wednesday, August 9th: Defend University Affirmative Action Policy

 

[via 5 calls]

It was reported this week that the Department of Justice is planning an attack on university ‘affirmative action’ policies. Typically, the Educational Opportunities Section of the DoJ handles university matters, but due to reported unwillingness by these career civil servants/education experts to reverse course on civil rights, the political appointee staffed Civil Rights Division will handle this project.

The continuing systemic racial discrimination and oppression in our society often makes it harder for young people of color to obtain the same educational resources as their white counterparts. Affirmative action admissions programs allow students from these disadvantaged backgrounds more balanced access to higher education. The Supreme Court has also ruled that a diverse student body has its own educational benefits, allowing universities to use race as an admission factor.

Call the Department of Justice

202-353-1555

Why you’re calling this office:

This organization is driving legislation related to the issue.

Your script:

Hi, my name is [NAME] and I’m a constituent from College Station (or Bryan), Texas. I’m calling to express my serious disapproval of the Department’s plans to investigate and sue universities because of their affirmative action admissions policy. This is clearly another attempt by this Department to deny equal opportunity to minority Americans in order to perpetuate white privilege, and I demand this project be shut down immediately.

Thank you for your time and attention.

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

Thursday, August 10th: Protect Mueller and the Russia Investigation

[via 5calls]

Trump has been publicly playing with the idea of firing Robert Mueller, the special prosecutor leading the independent investigation into Russia’s election interference, their potential ties to the Trump campaign, obstruction of justice, and a litany of related financial concerns. Trump cannot fire Mueller himself, but he can coerce someone in the Justice Department to do so.

 

On August 3rd, the Wall Street Journal reported that Mueller has impaneled a grand jury in Washington D.C. This is significant development showing Mueller’s seriousness in moving the investigation forward with prosecutions in mind. Because grand juries are arranged by prosecutors, if Mueller were fired now, this grand jury would effectively be dismantled. It is vital that Mueller’s position and investigation be protected.

 

Two bipartisan bills have been introduced in the Senate to do just that – one by Cory Booker (D-NJ) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC), and one by Chris Coons (D-DE) and Thom Tillis (R-NC). While the bills differ in when a judges panel would review the firing of a special prosecutor, both plans limit a president’s ability to do so. The two pairs of Senators may merge their plans when the Senate resumes work in September.

 

Call Sen. Cornyn (512.469.6034) or Sen. Cruz (512.916.5834) and tell them to protect the Mueller investigation.

Your script:

Hi, my name is [NAME] and I’m a constituent from College Station/Bryan.

I’m calling to express my concern that Trump may attempt to fire Special Counselor Bob Mueller in order to end the Russia investigation. I urge Senator Cornyn/Cruz to support the bipartisan legislation introduced that would protect a special counselor from inappropriate interference by the president.

Thank you for your time and attention.

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

 

Friday, August 11th: Flex Day for TX Lege Special Session

The Texas Legislature special session is wrapping up soon. Gov. Abbott and Lt. Gov. Patrick are trying to force through a far-right agenda with little oversight before it is over, and developments may move FAST. We are setting this day aside for issues that might come up this week (besides school finance and the damaging bathroom bill, pending issues involve reproductive justice, state and local government spending, and even local tree regulations). Check out this resource from TX Lege Indivisible for more information on the bills and sample scripts.

Calls to Action! Week of July 31st

Tuesday, August 1st: Y’all Means All!

Texans from all over the state are heading to Austin for the Y’all Means All Interfaith Lobbying Day to stand up against discrimination. The event begins with a press conference at 10 am on the South Steps of the Capitol, followed by an advocacy training (11 am), lunch (12-1pm), and lobbying time (1-3 pm). See the official event page for more information or to register for the event. Friends Congregational Church has organized a group bus to go to the lobbying day from College Station at 7:30 am. To reserve a seat, email justice-mission@friends-UCC.org

Can’t make it to Austin? Here are some things you can do to support the cause from home:

  • Sign the Y’all Means All statement opposing discriminatory legislation.
  • Call Raney (979.260.5040/512.463.0698), Rep. Kacal (979.774.7276/512.463.0412), and/or Sen. Schwertner (979.776.0222/512.063.4105) to ask them AGAIN to oppose all forms of “bathroom legislation”
  • Spread the word and get others to call, write, email, and share their opposition to these discriminatory bathroom bills

Wednesday, August 2nd: Ask Congress to Return to Regular Order (from ATX Indivisible/5calls)

The defeat of the harmful “skinny bill” last week put a temporary stop on efforts to repeal the ACA. However, efforts to undermine the ACA are not dead. We are asking the Senate to return to “regular order”: they should try to fix our nation’s health problems with bipartisan support and get at least 60 votes for any health care bill.

 

Call Sen. Cruz (512-916-5834) and Sen. Cornyn (512-469-6034) and tell them they need work with Democrats to improve our nation’s healthcare system and improve the ACA. Here is a draft script from 5calls.org:

Hi, my name is [NAME] and I’m a constituent from [BRYAN/COLLEGE STATION/OTHER].

I’m calling to encourage Senator [CORNYN/CRUZ] to abandon their ACA repeal efforts and instead advocate for a bipartisan approach to healthcare reform in committee hearings and regular legislative order. The Senate has wasted too much time on unpopular and failing repeal plans when the majority of Americans want the ACA repaired.

Thank you for your hard work answering the phones.

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

 

Thursday, August 3rd: Defend DACA and support the Dream Act (5calls/Indivisible Guide)

The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program has allowed hundreds of thousands of young people who came to this country as children to live, work, and study without the fear of being deported back to a country they have never known. DACA is now under attack. In June, 10 state attorneys general (including TX AG Ken Paxton) asked the Trump Administration to halt the program. They are threatening to challenge the program in court if it is not rescinded by September 5th.

Ending DACA would be disastrous for immigrant communities as well as the country as a whole. This is not a partisan issue: Rep. Bill Flores agreed with this during his teleconference last week. There are two things we can do to support DACA and our nation’s Dreamers:

  1. Call Texas State Attorney General Ken Paxton (512.463.2100) and tell him to remove his name from the legal challenge to DACA.

 

Here is a draft script from 5calls:

Hi, my name is [NAME] and I’m a constituent from [Bryan/College Station]

I’m calling to express my serious concern that Attorney General Paxton has joined the legal threat against the DACA program. Dreamers in school, in the workforce, or who are veterans contribute greatly to our society and should be given a path to citizenship, not deported. I urge the Attorney General to remove himself and the State of Texas from this legal challenge. Thank you.

 

  1. Call Senators Cruz (512.916.5834) and Cornyn (512.469.6034) and tell them to support the bipartisan DREAM Act

Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) have reintroduced the DREAM Act (S. 1615), which would provide a path to citizenship for immigrants who arrived in this country as children. This would solidify DACA protections going forward. Tell Sen. Cruz and Cornyn to co-sponsor this legislation. Texas is one of the states that stands to lose the most from forcing these young people back into the shadows and out of universities and the workforce.

 

Friday, August 4th: Call Rep. Raney and Rep. Kacal

By the Governor’s own accounting, the House is all that stands between us and a series of terrible bills that will harm millions of Texans. Use Friday to tell Rep. Raney or Rep. Kacal to stand firm against a bill of your choice. See this resource for possible topics and scripts.

Some possibilities include bills facilitating voter suppression (HB 47/73, which would make mail-in voting harder), bills targeting women’s rights (HB 214, which would force women to pay a premium for their insurance to cover abortion, possibly even in cases of rape and incest), and even bills making it easier to chop down trees and harm our environment (HB 70, which would reduce tree protection ordinances).