Demand an impeachment inquiry; Trump’s overt racism; Lights for Liberty; MapTheVote training | Take Action Newsletter

Take Action

Demand an impeachment inquiry now.

Trump’s election in 2016 was the Molotov cocktail that ignited the Indivisible movement, including Indivisible Austin. Broadly speaking, our primary means of resisting Trump is congressional advocacy. For a lot of us, this strategy provides a coping mechanism: We can actually do something—that is proven to work. We call our representatives! We track bills! We win elections! No doubt this is important work and we will keep doing it.

We’ve had notable victories—especially the 2018 midterm elections—but let’s reflect on the man who sparked the movement: President Donald J. Trump. During his time in the White House he’s become more emboldened, more overt in his hostility toward anyone outside his white, male Fox New base. He’s separating children from their mothers and locking them in camps. He sold out our nation to Russia, and obstructed Robert Mueller’s investigation into that fact. There are multiple, credible allegations of sexual assault against him. He continues to try to deprive millions of Americans of quality healthcare—a basic human right. He is an overt racist. Need we go on?

Congress can do more than pass bills. Congress can—and should—initiate impeachment proceedings against Donald Trump.

Write Your Reps: Demand an Impeachment Inquiry Now. 


Demand that your reps speak out against Trump’s overt racism

Trump’s racism is now completely out in the open. On Sunday, he tweeted that four members of congress, all women of color, should “go back” to where they came from. Even CNN is on it:

“President Donald Trump used racist language on Sunday to attack progressive Democratic congresswomen, falsely implying they weren’t natural-born American citizens.”

As of this writing, of our Central Texas reps, only Rep. Lloyd Doggett has issued a statement. (Update: Chip Roy issued a non-apology apology.)

Where is John Cornyn? Where is Mike McCaul? Give them a call and ask. 


How your voices are making a difference

  • Congressional Democrats issued 37 subpoenas to the Trump Organization and other Trump businesses
  • A House panel voted to subpoena Kushner and Sessions
  • Swiss researchers have a beautiful plan to counteract climate change: plant a trillion trees

Read how your voices are making a difference


Action of the Week

“Lights for Liberty” at the State Capitol and Hutto Detention Center

On Saturday, activists from all over the country held vigils to protest the inhumane conditions faced by migrants. Hundreds turned out in Austin, Georgetown, and at the T. Don Hutto Detention Center in Taylor. (Photo at Hutto by Amy Nelson / Wilco Indivisible.)

“We stood singing where they could hear us as the sun set. We lit our lights as the children’s names were read.” (Amy Nelson, Wilco Indivisible)

A minute of silence at the Texas State Capitol in Austin to acknowledge the inhumane conditions at the border. (Photo: Indivisible Austin)=

Support RAICES Texas, ACLU of Texas, and other organizations who sponsored “Lights for Liberty”


2020 is coming

MapTheVote Training

The Texas primary is in 32 weeks. Last week we shared a powerful new tool to find registered voters in your area, which included these maps:

It’s going to take all of us to take back our country from Trump and his enablers in Congress like John Cornyn, Roger Williams, Michael McCaul, Bill Flores, Chip Roy, and John Carter. Now is the time to register voters, talk to your neighbors, and ensure everyone has a plan to vote in March 2020 and again in November.

Sign up for a free training session on MapTheVote


Events

Volume Two of the Mueller Report Read LIVE in Austin

We’re hosting LIVE readings of the Mueller Report at North Door Austin. We just wrapped up Volume One. We’re taking a short break before continuing with Volume Two (aka “the really juicy stuff”), featuring celebrity readers and a wild, multimedia experience. Come one come all!

RSVP for Mueller Report LIVE on July 28, August 4, or August 11

View on Facebook


Let’s Talk about the Climate Crisis

The first, most important way to combat the mounting climate crisis is to talk about it. Studies show that when we normalize the discussion of climate, the science becomes more accepted as fact. A side benefit is that talking about the problem can ease the “climate anxiety” a lot of us are feeling.

From ThinkProgress:

The overwhelming majority of climate scientists  —  97 percent   — understand that humans are the primary cause of climate change.

Yet, as a new peer-reviewed study in journal Nature Climate Change points out, “only 11 percent of the US public correctly estimate the scientific consensus on climate change as higher than 90 percent.”

In other words, a person’s understanding about what scientists know about climate change goes up after they are told just how many scientists agree it’s human caused.

Read: Here’s what happens when you tell people the scientific consensus on climate change (ThinkProgress)


Your Moment of Zen

 

5 things you can do to support an accurate census; Register voters in your district | Take Action Newsletter

Take Action

Tell your reps that Trump is not above the law: He must accept the Supreme Court’s ruling on the census question

When the Supreme Court ruled that the 2020 census must not include a question about citizenship status, most thought the battle was won. It should not surprise anyone that the President feels otherwise; after all, when has he ever admitted defeat or respected the rule of law? Our own U.S. Rep Chip Roy is enabling Trump’s unconstitutional gambit by spelling out ways for Trump to issue an executive order that would reinstate the question of citizenship status. (For an explainer on the whole debacle, go here.)

There are a couple of actions to take. (Hat tip, once again, to Celeste Pewter.)

  1. Call your reps (even—especially!— if you are in Chip Roy’s district). They should speak up on this issue; no one, not even Trump, is above the law. Any executive order he issues can and should be overturned.
  2. Spread the word about the census! The whole point of the citizenship question is to discourage participation among immigrants. A lot of that damage has already been done. If you have a flexible schedule, consider becoming a census worker!

Read: 5 things you can do now to support an accurate census 


How your voices are making a difference

  • The DNC is reportedly considering a vote to conduct a presidential-candidate debate focused on climate change (This was one of last week’s actions!)
  • A federal judge blocked indefinite detention for asylum seekers
  • The House sued for access to President Trump’s tax returns

Read more on Donald’s masturbatory celebration of self


2020 is Coming

Register voters near you!

Register2Vote is a non-partisan, non-profit organization dedicated to accelerating voter registration and mobilization. Using this map from Register2Vote.org, you can identify unregistered voters, chip in a little money, and have voter registration forms mailed to them. Once the applications come back, you’ll be able to track progress. Amazing!

Download a two-pager that explains how it works

We have also updated our 2020 Elections Page. There are lots of new candidates—including new Senate candidates and 11 (ELEVEN) people running in TX31. 


Events

Friday, July 12

Public hearing on asylum seeking migrant families at the Texas-Mexico border.

The committee on Homeland Security & Public Safety will meet jointly with the committee on International Relations and Economic Development to hear invited testimony on issues related to the increase in asylum-seeking migrant families at the Texas-Mexico border.

2 p.m. at the Texas Capitol, Room E1.030

View schedule on TXLEGE website

Sunday, July 14

Mueller Report Read LIVE

The third installment in our series of readings from the Mueller Report, at North Door Austin. Doors open at 5 p.m.

RSVP here

View on Facebook


Activist of the Week: Madi Distefano


Your Moment of Zen

 

Liberty & Justice for Migrant Families; Honor E. Jean Carroll; In Memoriam: Marguerite Ponder | Take Action Newsletter

Take Action

Honor E. Jean Carroll and other survivors of sexual violence

Writer E. Jean Carroll is the latest to accuse Donald Trump of sexual assault. This allegation would end any other presidency. And it should end this one, but likely won’t. The injustice of a serial sex criminal continuing to occupy in the Oval Office makes us feel depressed and powerless. It’s hard to process such ongoing, flagrant cruelty. But one thing you can do right now is donate to the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN) to help other victims of sexual violence. On the donation form, there is a field where you can honor someone: We suggest E. Jean Carroll or one of the other 21 victims of Trump’s sexual crimes.

Donate to RAINN in honor of E. Jean Carroll and other victims of sexual violence


How your voices are making a difference

“You eat fruit from trees you did not plant…and you must plant trees you will not eat from.”

Stay in the fight warriors. Even if we don’t see immediate victory, we must plant for those who will inherit this world after us.

Continue reading a special edition of this week’s VOICES


Events

Tuesday, July 2

Close the Camps NOW!

12 p.m. Visit your nearest congressional office at noon to tell your reps to close the camps now.

What Happened at the Texas Capitol & What’s Next?

6:30 p.m. at Patagonia, 316 Congress. Get an insider view of what happened during this year’s session of the state legislature from:

  • State Representative Erin Zwiener
  • Texas Campaign for the Environment Austin Program Director & Legislative Director Andrew Dobbs
  • Texas Campaign for the Environment  Executive Director Robin Schneider

View on Facebook

Wednesday, July 3

Liberty & Justice for Migrant Families at Carrizo Springs

Protest at the Carrizo Springs detention facility Wednesday, July 3 from 11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. organized by Children’s Defense Fund-Texas, Texas Organizing Project and the Carrizo/Comecrudo Tribe of Texas.

909 Munson Rd, Carrizo Springs, TX 78834

This is a family-friendly event. Please bring a memento to add to a communal project we’ll create on site, such as a letter, drawing, paper hearts or hands, etc.

Sign up for bus transportation from Houston and San Antonio thanks to TOP

Sign up to carpool from Austin

More info

Sunday, July 7

Mueller Report Read LIVE

Austin’s best will turn out to read the Mueller Report in successive portions—LIVE at the North Door—for your listening and entertainment pleasure!

RSVP on Eventbrite

View Facebook event

Friday, July 12

Lights for Liberty—T. Don Hutto Detention Center

Hosted by Wilco Indivisible and Lights for Liberty

SCHEDULE:
8-9pm: Music and speakers
9pm: Candle lighting & moment of silence.
*Stay tuned for more details*

LOGISTICS:
We will be at the baseball fields next to the T. Don Hutto, Residential Center at 1001 Welch St, Taylor, Texas. Start time is 8:00 p.m., July 12, 2019. The event will be on the baseballs fields adjacent to the Center. There are no facilities at this site.

View on Facebook


Let’s talk about the climate crisis

Over two nights of Democratic presidential debates, 15 total minutes were spent on the existential threat of climate change. And the moderators’ questions — especially Chuck Todd’s — were asinine. Despite pressure, the Democratic National Committee (DNC), who sets the debate schedule, has so far not scheduled a debate devoted solely to the threat of climate change. This needs to change.

The Sunrise Movement is one organization stepping up to shine a light on this issue. They seek to “make climate change an urgent priority across America, end the corrupting influence of fossil fuel executives on our politics, and elect leaders who stand up for the health and wellbeing of all people.” Let’s amplify their efforts and pressure the DNC to schedule a #ClimateDebate.

More information on how to build pressure for a climate debate from the Sunrise Movement


Funding the Fight

You’re here, all the way down at the bottom of our weekly newsletter. Each and every week we do our best to distill some of the most important messages and actions for you.

You rely on it, at least in part, to organize your thoughts about how to keep pushing back, each and every week.

If you value that, first show us little love by supporting us today. 

Second, know that this newsletter is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to what IATX does and will do to preserve and advance our democracy.


In Memoriam: Marguerite Ponder

We are saddened to announce the passing of one of our earliest activists, Marguerite Ponder. Marguerite was part of a core group of women who visited legislative offices and appeared in our 2017 short film “I Stand Indivisible.” May she rest in power.

 

Stop playing games with kids’ lives | Take Action Newsletter

Join us for six nights of live readings of the Mueller Report. Begins Friday, June 28. Details below.

Take Action

Tell your reps: Stop playing games with kids’ lives

(Much credit to Celeste Pewter)

Trump is treating his border crisis like a game: He announced sweeping ICE raids in 10 cities, and then hours later announced a two-week delay, demanding that Congress find a solution. We all know he does not operate in good faith. Celeste Pewter (of 2020Senate) says:

He just wants it to make it seem like he’s being reasonable, so at the end of two weeks, he can say:

– Look, I tried and Congress failed, so let’s carry out the raids, and

– Doesn’t Congress suck at doing their job? Drain the swamp, reelect me, etc.

It’s manipulation via Tweet, and frankly – all media outlets should cover it as much, and electeds should call it out too.

Congress is in fact voting on DHS funding this week. This is money that Trump can use to expand his detention and deportation machine. They need to hear from us that children’s lives are not a game, and that no additional money for enforcement be included in the bill.

Write your reps: No additional funding for immigration enforcement

Call your reps

Updated list of organizations helping immigrant families at the border (Texas Tribune)


Tell your reps to support the study of reparations for slavery

It’s hard to believe it was only last week when, in observation of Juneteenth, Ta-Nehisi Coates testified before Congress on the need for reparations to address the sin of slavery in the United States. Five years ago Coates wrote the seminal piece on reparations. Now there is a bill in Congress—H.R.40 – Commission to Study and Develop Reparation Proposals for African-Americans Act—which has 67 cosponsors, all Democrats, four of them from Texas. Call your reps and ask them to support this bill.

In the video below, Coates directly addresses Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s complaint that “no one alive” owned slaves.

 


Join the Healthcare Activist Leadership Network to build power for 2020

Are you mad that the lege did nothing significant about healthcare this session? Indivisible Austin has endorsed a new campaign to fight for expanded healthcare access in Texas. This statewide coalition of advocates is looking for individual healthcare champions to build a grassroots network of like-minded activists that spans the state. We want lawmakers and 2020 candidates at every level, in every district, to know that when we vote, healthcare is going to be the deciding factor.

Learn more and nominate yourself or someone else to join


How your voices are making a difference

  • New York approved one of the most ambitious climate plans to date.
  • The Supreme Court upheld the ruling that Virginia’s maps were racially gerrymandered.
  • Leander’s Open Cathedral church hosted a family Pride event after the local library caved to religious zealots and canceled the city’s popular monthly Drag Story Hour.

Read “Rainbow-clad Kids at Drag Story Hour”


Events

Tuesday, June 25

Rally to Restore Voting Rights Protections

6 to 8 p.m., Austin City Hall, 301 W. 2nd Street

Voting rights advocates are pushing back with a National Day of Action to demand that Congress restore voting rights protections by passing the Voting Rights Advancement Act (HR-4).

Facebook event

Wednesday, June 26 & Thursday, June 27

Presidential Debate Watch Party

8 p.m. at Space 24 Twenty, 2420 Guadalupe St.

Join Indivisible Austin and Jolt Action for the First Presidential Debate watch party of the 2020 Election. We will be streaming the full Presidential debate LIVE. Come watch, witness, and prepare to vote.

Facebook event (optional RSVP)

Friday, June 28 and then Sundays through August 11

Mueller Report Read LIVE!

8 p.m. to midnight, North Door, 502 Brushy St.

Indivisible Austin and North Door present a live reading of the Mueller Report, starring local actors, musicians and other ne’er-do-wells.

RSVP on Eventbrite and/or Facebook


2020 Is Coming

How are Central Texas congressional candidates responding to Trump’s deportation force? Below are a few examples. If you’re on Twitter, subscribe to this list of candidates.


Funding the Fight

We’ve hit another one of those moments where the “normal” deluge has turned into an absolute maelstrom. Holding children prisoner in abysmal conditions, toying with war with Iran for political gain, disgustingly rampant corruption, and even more horrendous personal allegations of assault.

Our only way out is to go through, together. It sounds trite, but it’s the only real cure for that feeling in your stomach. We can and will change things by:

  • Demanding justice
  • Speaking the truth &
  • Organizing our power for the future

Support Indivisible Austin. Together, we will make it through and change the world along the way.


Your Moment of Zen

Tell your Rep to Defund ICE and CPB; Fire John Cornyn; Mueller Report Read LIVE in Austin! | Take Action Newsletter

Join us for six nights of live readings of the Mueller Report. Details below.

Take Action

Tell your Rep to Defund ICE and CPB

The truth about ICE and CPB

Last week, the House Appropriations Committee approved a bill to fund agencies including Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and Customs and Border Protection (CBP). The bill has some strengths—like taking back the money Trump stole for his wall when he declared a fake emergency—and weaknesses, like creating a $387 million slush fund for ICE. Now the bill moves to the full House, which must act by Sept. 30.

United We Dream has an amazing resource on ICE and CPB, and on the human impact of their deportation force. This summer, while Congress decides on funding for these agencies, take time to read “The Truth About ICE and CPB,” and watch some of the video testimonials on the United We Dream website. Let’s arm ourselves with knowledge, and prepare for the next fight in Congress.

United We Dream: “The Truth About ICE and CPB”

Indivisible: Tell Your Representative to Defund Hate

Fire John Cornyn!

Sen. John Cornyn doesn’t think we need a bill requiring campaigns to report foreign contacts. He thinks campaigns should call the FBI if, say, a Russian cutout offers dirt on a political opponent; he just doesn’t think we need a bill to enforce it. Pre-Trump, Cornyn’s trust in norms, rather than laws, to uphold our Democracy made sense. (Of course you put country over party, right?)

But now? Not so much.

You’re welcome to call John Cornyn’s office and complain. But at this point, our best hope is to fire him in 2020.

Take the pledge to fire John Cornyn

Related: Democrats’ 2020 Achilles’s heel: The Senate (The Hill)


How your voices are making a difference

  • The House voted to enforce subpoenas of AG William Barr and former White House counsel Don McGahn.
  • Adam B. Schiff demanded that two federal intelligence agency heads provide documents showing how White House officials edited and suppressed written testimony stating that global warming poses a grave man-made national security threat.

“Baby Wannabe Despot in Chief”


Events

Upcoming: June 26 & 27

Presidential Debate Watch Party

8 p.m. at Space 24 Twenty, 2420 Guadalupe St.

Join Indivisible Austin and Jolt Action for the First Presidential Debate watch party of the 2020 Election. We will be streaming the full Presidential debate LIVE. Come watch, witness, and prepare to vote.

Facebook event (optional RSVP)

Upcoming: June 28 through August 11

Mueller Report Read LIVE!

5 to 9 p.m. North Door, 502 Brushy St.

Indivisible Austin and North Door present a live reading of the Mueller Report, starring local actors, musicians and other ne’er-do-wells.

RSVP on Eventbrite and/or Facebook


Let’s talk about climate change

One of the most important things you can do to combat the existential threat of global warming is to talk about it. This week we thank Rep. Lloyd Doggett for his willingness to confront the challenge.


Funding the Fight

Starting later this month, we’re hosting six nights of live readings of the Mueller Report. Most Americans haven’t read the 448-page saga about Russia’s attack on our Democracy and Trump’s fealty to the attackers. Like Shakespeare’s plays, perhaps the Mueller Report is better on stage than on paper. So we’re bringing it to the public, in a fun, live-action setting.

Saving Democracy isn’t free: we have equipment to rent, ad space to buy, and a certain 448-page document to print.

Can you chip in?


Your Moment of Zen

 

Fight for expanded healthcare access in Texas | Take Action newsletter

Take Action

Join the Healthcare Activist Leadership Network to build power for 2020

Join Texas’ Healthcare Activist Leadership Network!

Are you mad that the lege did nothing significant about healthcare this session? Indivisible Austin has endorsed a new campaign to fight for expanded healthcare access in Texas. This statewide coalition of advocates is looking for individual healthcare champions to build a grassroots network of like-minded activists that spans the state. We want lawmakers and 2020 candidates at every level, in every district, to know that when we vote, healthcare is going to be the deciding factor.

Learn more and nominate yourself or someone else to join


How your voices are making a difference

  • The House passed an immigration bill to protect Dreamers
  • A bipartisan group of senators introduced more than a dozen bills intended to block the sale of arms to Saudi Arabia
  • U.S. Embassies are flying rainbow pride flags against State Department’s orders

Reminders of the goodness of people…


Thanks, Lloyd

Rep. Lloyd Doggett was an important ally on two fronts last week. The big news is that he announced his support to begin an impeachment inquiry against Donald Trump. He did not arrive at this position quickly or lightly, as he tells Lawrence O’Donnell.

Rep. Doggett also held a joint press conference with Rep. Joaquin Castro calling on congress to issue subpoenas to turn over more documents related to Gov. Greg Abbott and David Whitley’s attempted purge of 90,000 Texas voters. Give Rep. Doggett a call to voice your thanks and support.


2020 is coming

Former state senator and gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis is running for Congress in TX21… OR IS SHE??? The Texas Observer’s Forrest Wilder tweeted last week that she had announced her candidacy at their fundraiser. Now the Austin Chronicle says they jumped the gun. While Davis wrings her hands, it’s worth noting that Jennie Lou Leeder jumped into the race weeks ago. We’re just excited that there is so much interest in this gerrymandered district that Rep. Chip Roy barely won in 2018.

Check out more 2020 Central Texas resources


Your Moment of Zen


Funding the Fight

Things are heating up. You can feel it, and you can see it in this week’s stories. NOW is when the action really starts to end this amoral, corrupt administration. Whether it be the unlikely but righteous route of impeachment or through the righteous slog of the 2020 election, our work is beginning in earnest. So, NOW is the time to support our efforts to get out and organize for the endgame.

Tell Cruz and Cornyn: Pass the background check bill; It’s time to impeach; TXLEGE Sine Die | Take Action Newsletter

Take Action

Tell the do-nothing Senate: Pass the background check bill

The House of Representatives has sent over 100 bills to the Senate only to see them languish because Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is not allowing votes. One such bill is H.R. 8, which passed the House with bipartisan support, and would close the gun-show loophole that allows sales of firearms without a background check.

In the wake of yet another mass shooting, this time in Virginia Beach, passage of this bill would be an incremental step toward common sense gun legislation in this country. But the Senate won’t vote on it. Tell Cruz and Cornyn that this is not acceptable. And while you’re at it, take the pledge to fire John Cornyn—the most useless of all of the do-nothing senators on the Hill.

Write a letter to to Cornyn and Cruz

No one is above the law: It’s time for the House to start impeachment proceedings

With control of the House, Democrats should use their investigatory power to begin investigations into whether Donald Trump has committed crimes that would justify his impeachment. Rep. Rashida Tlaib’s resolution is a good step forward.

Send a letter to your rep

Find (or organize!) a local event for MoveOn’s June 15 Day of Action


How your voices are making a difference

  • The Texas Secretary of State who tried to fan up outrage and purge the voter rolls of “noncitizens” voting is out of a job.
  • Nineteen discriminatory anti-LGBTQ proposed bills were shot down in this session of the Texas lege
  • A growing number of House Democrats—and even one Republican—are ready to begin impeachment proceedings

Bye, Felicia


TXLEGE SINE DIE

Thank you - Pusheen the cat

We did it, y’all. You did it.

SB 9: Blocked. David Whitley’s confirmation: Also blocked.

As Progress Texas says:

“Because progressives showed up to vote in 2018, we changed the Texas legislature for the better and we’re just getting started”

If we bring that same energy to the next election cycle, a progressive Texas is ours. Thank you for continuing to show up.

Read: Top Best (& Worst) Moments of the 2019 Texas Legislative Session

Make a gift to Indivisible Austin


2020 is coming

I voted stickers

With the TXLEGE session over, it’s time to reflect and recharge…and then refocus on 2020.

  • We still have five U.S. House seats to flip in Central Texas. The incumbents are already spending vast sums of money to defend those seats. It’s never too soon to donate to the candidates you support.
  • Sen. John Cornyn is already coming out swinging. He must be stopped. We must flip the Senate, or Mitch McConnell will continue to obstruct Democracy.
  • In 2018 we flipped nine Texas House and two Senate seats. We’re on our way to a progressive Texas, but only if we put in the work.

We have 38 weeks until the first votes are cast in the 2020 primary. Let’s make sure we’re doing everything we can to make those weeks count.

Become a Texas Volunteer Deputy Registrar

June 26: Get trained on a new tool to register your neighbors to vote


Events


Your Moment of Zen

 

Protect trans health; Last chance to #PurgeWhitley; Chip Roy’s bad-faith grandstanding | Take Action Newsletter

The Austin Sanctuary Network Needs Your Help

Memorial Day

Today we honor the men and women who died while serving in the United States military. As the Trump administration yet again rattles its sabers in the Middle East, it’s worth reading the responses from military veterans to this tweet from the official U.S. Army account.


Take Action

Submit a public comment to protect trans health

From the Transgender Law Center:

The Trump-Pence Administration is trying to undermine the Health Care Rights Law, a lifesaving law that helps transgender people access the health care they need without discrimination from health care providers or insurers. Now, the Department of Health and Human Services is proposing regulation that falsely says discrimination against transgender people is legal.

While they can’t change the law, this new regulation would confuse patients, providers, and insurers, and make it much harder for many transgender people to access life-saving care.

Make your voice heard. Submit a comment to the Department of Health and Human Services to tell them why you oppose the new rule and share your story.


Last call to block the confirmation of David Whitley as Texas Secretary of State

 

You defeated SB 9. Now, the Texas Legislature adjourns on May 27, and senate Republicans are seeking any opportunity to vote for the confirmation of Abbott’s SOS nominee David Whitley. (The same Whitley who oversaw the disastrous attempt to purge voters.) They need a two-thirds majority, and has long as Democrats hold strong (and don’t leave the building), Whitley will not be confirmed.

Stiffen their spines: Send a letter to your Texas state senator


How your voices are making a difference

  • Texas SB 9 is DEAD
  • Maryland became the first state to cover Planned Parenthood proposed cuts.
  • New York passed a bill giving Congress a way to Get Trump’s state tax returns.

Also, Ben Carson is a flat-out idiot


Congress Critter of the Week: Chip Roy (again)

Rep. Chip Roy made national headlines last week when he single-handedly delayed $19.1 billion in disaster relief aid for survivors of Hurricane Harvey and other storms. The funding will be released when Congress returns from recess on June 3, so Chip’s move was nothing more than grandstanding at the expense of desperate Texans waiting for relief. Chip’s purported objection was that the bill did not contain funding for border security.

Chip — who claims to want to drain the swamp that spawned him — won his heavily gerrymandered seat in Congress by fewer than 10,000 votes. Now is the time to organize. As our friends in TX21 Indivisible put it, “Y’all want disaster relief? In 2020 we need to relieve ourselves of the disaster that is Chip Roy.”

Get involved:

Read: If Republicans hate government so much, they should leave (Washington Post)


Let’s talk about climate change

One of the best ways you can fight climate change is to talk about it. Ignoring the problem won’t make it go away. Here are some conversation starters.

  • MoveOn’s “Youth Climate Strike” campaign is demanding that presidential candidates debate climate policy. Here’s Elizabeth Warren agreeing to the debate.


Funding the Fight

I voted stickers

We did it. You did it. After repeated calls, letters, tweets and posts, SB 9—as well as related amendments—is DEAD. This vile voter-suppression attempt would be the law of the land were it not for dedicated organizations like Texas Civil Rights Project and activists like you. For our part, Indivisible Austin sent 100 of your letters opposing SB 9 to state lawmakers.

Activism works. But it’s not free. Make a gift today?


Your Moment of Zen

The Rights of Women and Girls; Zombie SB 9; End the “Dead Suspects” loophole | Take Action Newsletter

Take Action

The Rights of Women and Girls

While the Texas legislature is no friend to comprehensive health care, this past week the state of Alabama’s new, near total ban on abortion dominated headlines. The law is so extreme that it would force a 12-year-old rape survivor to carry a pregnancy to term—and this in a state with abysmal education, child care, and public support policies for children writ large. While some may oppose abortion care for genuine reasons, Alabama’s law makes clear the political hypocrisy motivating too many who call themselves “pro-life.”

This law is designed to go to the Supreme Court and overturn—or at the very least gut—Roe v. Wade. Supporters want people to forget the women and girls taken to the ER after being preyed upon in back alleys or taking desperate measures on their own. We won’t forget.

And we also won’t forget that federal lawmakers are not powerless to act. Passing a federal law could codify a woman’s right to choose has always been a possibility, but always blocked by conservatives.

Urge our members of Congress to pledge to do anything it takes to make a stand for women’s rights—cosponsoring legislation, blocking judicial nominees in the Senate, and speaking out clearly against this affront of a law.

Show up at the Capitol on Tuesday at 11 a.m. to #StoptheBans


Zombie SB 9?

SB 9 appears to have died in the House Calendars Committee, and therefore cannot be passed before the May 21st deadline. More than 120 witnesses showed up to testify, the vast majority opposed to the bill. Your calls and letters rattled them!

We must remain vigilant, as provisions of the bill could be amended to other bills. We’ll need to fight any renewed efforts to suppress voters with the same tenacity we fought SB 9.

But the last week has shown: Activism works!

Read the latest letter to the House Elections committee from Texas Civil Rights Project and other grassroots orgs


Close the “Dead Suspects Loophole” to the Public Information Act

This is a quick action for constituents of state Sen. Kirk Watson (basically all of Austin):

Texas law makes records non-public in criminal cases when the suspect dies. This means the government can withhold information in police shootings, jail suicides, and other situations where a defendant died before being convicted. These are the cases where we need accountability most!

  • Support closure for families and loved ones of people killed by police
  • Promote public accountability in the most serious death-in-custody cases.
  • Restore public status of records that were open in Texas for 25 years w/o a problem.

Send Kirk Watson a letter


How your voices are making a difference

  • Michigan Rep. Justin Amash has become the first Republican to call for Donny’s impeachment
  • The House passed a bill that will ban discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity
  • In Nevada, a majority-female legislative body is prioritizing women’s health and safety issues, prison reform, and gun safety

Don’t panic! Read how your voices are making a difference


Texas 2020

Imagine a world where Donald Trump is defeated but the Senate keeps its majority, and John Cornyn remains in office. Our job is to ensure that doesn’t happen. The Texas Tribune reports that three more people are considering a run against Cornyn:

  • Amanda Edwards, an at-large Houston City Council member
  • Dallas-area State Sen. Royce West
  • Chris Bell, the former Houston congressman and 2006 gubernatorial nominee

In the House, Julie Oliver (TX25) and Christine Eady Mann (TX31) officially kicked off their campaigns.

For updates on these and other districts, bookmark our Central Texas 2020 Elections Resource page


Congress Critter of the Week: A Tale of Two Congressmen

Last week, Rep. Chip Roy had a public meltdown defending the rights of pharmaceutical companies to gouge patients and earn monopolistic profits. Elle Magazine put it best:

“Now you may say, what’s wrong with having a huge emotional response to the fact that a small number of drug executives are making more than most of the cast of Avengers: End Game made? Oh, because Roy was arguing in defense of that most maligned of social groups: Profits.”

Compare Rep. Roy’s statement to a House speech from Rep. Lloyd Doggett, who, like Roy, is passionate about drug prices, but unlike Roy, he wants them to go DOWN.

Let’s make room for more reps like Lloyd Doggett in the House. We can begin by firing Chip Roy.


Let’s talk about climate change

One of the best ways you can fight climate change is to talk about it. Ignoring the problem won’t make it go away. Here are some conversation starters.

  • The Guardian newspaper recently updated their style guide to replace neutral phrases like “climate change” with words that more clearly express what is actually going on: “Crisis,” “Emergency,” etc.
  • Research shows that people respond better to photos of people fighting climate change than to, say, polar bears stranded on ice. Climate Visuals a photo library of people engaged in climate solutions.
  • Use this shortcut to read and share the text of the the Green New Deal: indivisibleaustin.com/gnd
  • Finally, here’s Bill Nye the Science Guy swearing like a sailor about climate change:


Funding the Fight

We’re in the thick of it at the Texas Legislature, and with your help, Indivisible Austin is leading the fight. Last week, we helped organize major resistance to the SB9 voter suppression bill at its committee hearing. Thanks to all the volunteers and allied groups, we were able to show a shocking and unexpected level of resistance to this terrible bill.

We need you to keep engaged with us at the legislature and we truly need your financial support to keep all our wheels turning. Support us in our efforts to be your voice of the legislature. Make a gift today.


Your Moment of Zen

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Last chance to stop SB 9; Demand that Barr be held in contempt of Congress | Take Action Newsletter

2020 Central Texas Election Resources

Happy (belated) Mother’s Day! ❤️

Every day thousands of mothers languish in jail simply because they cannot afford bail. Make a donation today to the National Bail Out Collective, the force behind the #FreeBlackMamas Mother’s Day bail-outs. Throughout the year, the collective also provides fellowship and employment opportunities for those they bail out. And they work with groups like the Texas Organizing Project to support ongoing bail reform efforts.


Take Action

Last chance to stop SB 9

I voted stickers

SB 9, the voter-suppression bill in the Texas Legislature that would charge voters with felonies for making honest mistakes, has a hearing in the House Elections Committee on Wednesday, May 15 at 8 a.m.

SB 9 seeks to make voting much more difficult, confusing, and scary for voters, all while creating more red-tape and bureaucracy for county election administrators. In 2018, a record number of Texans showed up to the polls to participate in our midterm elections. Instead of encouraging more democratic participation, SB 9 seeks to keep more and more Texans from voting in the future.

Read more about SB9

Call or email your rep—especially if they are on the Elections Committee:

Chair: Rep. Stephanie Klick (512) 463-0599

stephanie.klick@house.texas.gov

Vice Chair: Rep. Philip Cortez (512) 463-0269

philip.cortez@house.texas.gov

Rep. John H. Bucy III (512) 463-0696

john.bucy@house.texas.gov

Rep. Dustin Burrows (512) 463-0542

dustin.burrows@house.texas.gov

Rep. Briscoe Cain (512) 463-0733

briscoe.cain@house.texas.gov

Rep. Art Fierro (512) 463-0596

art.fierro@house.texas.gov

Rep. Celia Israel (512) 463-0821

celia.israel@house.texas.gov

Rep. Mayes Middleton (512) 463-0502

mayes.middleton@house.texas.gov

Rep. Valoree Swanson (512) 463-0572

valoree.swanson@house.texas.gov

Contact your state reps about SB 9


Demand that Barr be held in contempt of Congress

(Credit to Celeste Pewter for this action)

A quick recap of the constitutional crisis: House Judiciary voted to hold Attorney General William Barr in contempt. As retaliation for Judiciary’s vote the DOJ urged Trump to assert executive privilege over the Mueller report/related documents—which he did.

Call your rep and insist that they vote Yes when the contempt resolutions comes to a floor vote. You can say:

  1. Barr should be held in contempt if he fails to meet the deadline set by Chairman Schiff and House Intelligence for  turning over an unredacted version of the Mueller Report and related documents to Congress.
  2. For all WH staff and cabinet members to be held in contempt and subject to measures like inherent contempt if they ignore subpoenas, and
  3. I also want [elected] to know, I want [electeds] to continue to discuss Barr resigning and/or being impeached. He’s proven repeatedly that his interests are serving Trump, and not the DOJ or the American people. Enough is enough.

While you’re at it: Demand your member of Congress support Rep. Tlaib’s Impeachment Resolution


How your voices are making a difference

  • The House Ways and Means Committee subpoenaed Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin
  • The House Judiciary Committee voted to hold the U.S. attorney general in contempt
  • The Austin City Council formally backed AOC’s Green New Deal

“Evil only wins when good is silent.” Read how your voices are making a difference


Events

Wednesday, May 15

SB 9 hearing with Elections Committee at Capitol, room E2.016

See SB9 action above. Show up in person to oppose voter suppression.

Optional RSVP on Facebook


Funding the Fight

Indivisible Austin’s fight for democracy includes fighting against the horrendous voter suppression bill, SB 9, sending more than 70 letters. Among many anti-democratic  provisions, SB 9 prevents pregnant women from voting absentee, even if they expect to be giving birth on the day of the election.

These are extraordinary times calling for extraordinary action. We’re making a difference together. You can be a part of it. Contact your legislators AND support our efforts to reach others like you by making a gift today!


Your Moment of Zen