Urge Governor Newsom: Drop your threatened SB-1 veto!

The California Indivisible statewide call Wednesday emphasized an urgent need for phone calls to Gavin Newsom from as many Indivisible members as possible asking him to abandon his announced plan to veto SB-1. The bill, authored by Senate President pro Tem Toni Atkins, would ensure California’s authority to preserve our clean air, clean water, biodiversity and safe workplaces in the face of unprecedented threats and rollbacks from the Trump administration. On Friday, Newsom signaled he was giving in to big agriculture and other SB-1 opponents.  Multiple environmental groups, including the NDRC, Nature Conservancy, and the Sierra Club are urging him to reverse course, and with enough additional flak from Indivisibles, he might just do that. So…

Call Governor Newsom’s office at  (916) 445-2841 and insist that he sign SB-1 and not veto it! 

What Can Be Done About Gerrymandering

After partisan gerrymandering was given a green light by the US Supreme Court in June, our hopes for federal corrective action dimmed.  But there’s much to be done:

In the courts: Key players like the Brennan Center for Justice, Common Cause, the League of Women Voters, and the Campaign Legal Center are working on lawsuits in where the state constitutions or legislation give leverage against gerrymandering.  They will also be challenging states where racial gerrymandering is masquerading as “political.” All these groups deserve our financial support.

With State Ballot Initiatives: 26 states allow ballot initiatives that establish independent, non-partisan commissions for redistricting.  These need to be state level initiatives, but the same non-partisan groups  (Brennan Center for Justice, Common Cause, the League of Women Voters, and the Campaign Legal Center) offer support, legal advice, and how-to guides. After fair vote coalitions mounted extensive grass-roots campaigns, five states passed such initiatives in 2018.

In State Electoral Campaigns: State legislatures and governors are the key actors in drawing electoral districts, as the GOP realized in launching their infamous REDMAP strategy in 2010.  Democrats aren’t asleep this time, and their counter-effort is led by the National Democratic Redistricting Committee (NDRC), headed by Eric Holder and supported by Obama. Obama’s Organizing for Action group has joined NDRC to create the All on the Line Campaign, whose volunteers will bird-dog the redistricting process in each state.  The NDRC coordinates with the Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee (DLCC) and the Democratic Governors Association (DGA) to elect Democrats who have pledged to support fair electoral maps. The NDRC record: 61% wins in 230 state races targeted in 2018.  Joining these groups is Emily’s List, which is committing $20 million to 500 state legislative races.

In Federal Election Campaigns.  With passage of HR-1 in the House, congressional Democrats are committed to supporting non-partisan redistricting, and the NDRC is asking all Democratic candidates from president down to sign a “Fair Districts Pledge.” Winning the Senate and Presidency would allow HR-1 to become law and at some point would lead to a different Supreme Court.

With Long-Range Reforms: There are strong arguments for enlarging congressional districts and using ranked-choice voting to select 3-5 House seats each, giving representation to every voter instead of  the current winner-take-all system.  This idea, backed by FairVote and others, has been put into a proposed Fair Representation Act initiated by Virginia Democrat Don Beyer. After 2020 maybe?

With Grass-roots Activism: Activists around the country that pushed for HR-1 are partnering with all the groups listed here; check out our Indivisible resources on fighting gerrymandering.

Postcards really can make a difference!

Check out the latest from Tony the Democrat, below:

Turn Florida Blue with Vote By Mail

One year ago, Postcards to Voters tested a new postcard-writing campaign to encourage registered Democrats in 5 Florida counties to enroll in their Vote By Mail program.  Once enrolled, they would receive a ballot in the mail for every single election for which they were eligible to vote.  For four years!

Plenty of evidence shows that voters who are mailed ballots are much more likely to participate than those who aren’t mailed ballots.  So, we conducted a pilot effort and measured the results.  The findings were overwhelmingly convincing.  You can read the analysis by clicking HERE. So Postcards to Voters announced a mission to write to the entire state in time for the 2020 Presidential election.  We have more than a year to finish all 67 counties. But we can’t wait until the last minute. CLICK to learn about the current Pinellas County, Florida, effort.

And if you’re ready to help writing to Democrats in Florida not already enrolled in Vote By Mail: 

National Campaigns Network gearing up for August event and September Day of Action

On a July 9 webcast, Leah and Ezra gave an overview of the Indivisible 2-year strategic plan to take us through 2020: fighting Trump, ensuring a constructive Democratic primary, taking over the White House and Senate, and implementing a democracy reform agenda.  An essential vehicle for this effort will be the National Campaigns Network or NCN, an organizational structure for mobilizing critical actions in coming months. Indivisible groups are invited to join the NCN, commit to taking part in these actions, and if possible send representatives to the August 10-11 IndivisiNation Rising conference in Washington DC. The first national day of action will be timed for the September congressional budget vote. Details at our July 14 meeting.

Actions for tomorrow & the week ahead:

Tell your member of Congress to vote NO on additional funding for Trump’s deportation machine. Next week, the Democratic controlled House will vote on a bill to provide additional funding to the Department of Homeland Security. The Senate will vote on its own bill, which will contain nearly $5 billion for DHS. We need our members of Congress to stand up and refuse to give Trump more money to terrorize communities and lock up families.

Check out our updated impeachment toolkit at Impeach.indivisible.org. Our campaign page is updated with new resources to help keep the pressure on Congress this Fourth of July to do its job and hold Trump accountable.

Check out Indivisible’s new Presidential Engagement Playbook and prepare for next week’s debates by downloading Indivisible’s June Debate Guide


Register for NPNA’s Family Protection Network Field Webinar tomorrow 6/21

Trump’s recent threats about a new surge of deportations are raising alarms across the country, and it is critical that Indivisibles do everything we can to stand with immigrant communities.

Our allies at the National Partnership for New Americans (NPNA), together with the Tennessee Immigrant and Refugee Rights Coalition (TIRRC), the Fair Immigration Reform Movement (FIRM) and others are hosting a webinar tomorrow, June 21 at 1pm Eastern Time / 10am Pacific Time to discuss the NPNA Family Protection Network and the local rapid response strategies. Speakers will highlight local and statewide public funding wins to expand community protection and access to counsel, how to work with employers to protect workers, and share strategies to build partnerships with private law firms.

Impeachment pressures rising

Indivisible national survey results are in and were published this week. 80% of Indivisibles favor launching an impeachment investigation into Donald Trump.  Read the details here.

An Indivisible Statement to Congress is up on the national website calling on our elected members of congress to begin an in-depth, public impeachment inquiry.  This began as an initiative of Indivisible South Bay, has spread like wildfire, and is now gathering signatures of Indivisible groups nationwide. Read it here, but skip the sign-on—we’re already signatories based on our discussions Sunday.

#ImpeachTrump National Day of Action is this Saturday, June 15.  The nearest rally is in Oakland at the Ronald V. Dellums Federal Building. Go if you can—advance signups here are recommended.

The Filibuster and our democracy

Our Sunday discussion of Indivisible’s April survey included reference to the US Indivisible position on abolition of the filibuster.  Most Indivisible groups nationwide are in support of doing away with the filibuster if Democrats manage to take over the Senate in 2020.  You can read about it in depth here. There’s also a good discussion of the issue by Matt Iglesias on Vox: The Democratic debate over filibuster reform, explained.

2020 presidential engagement survey analysis

At Sunday’s meeting we’ll present the fascinating results of this spring’s Indivisible survey on engagement in the 2020 presidential race. Indivisible has asked that their national survey results not be shared publicly on social media or anywhere it might become accessible to those outside our network. So to get the details you need to be there.  Join us!

Action: National Priorities, resources & Updates

From Chloe Stryker, Indivisible Senior Regional Organizer, West Coast

  • We are rolling out a 2-year Democracy Plan, take a look! We will discuss more on the National Activist call. 
  • Debate Watch Parties/Recruitment
  • #ImpeachTrump Day on June 15th with MoveON and By the People
  • Dream and Promise Act Passed!
  • Defund Hate – Updated resource page here.
    • The ask for Indivisibles is to call your MoC and tell them to sign onto the CPC letter, which closes on Thurs. This letter is led by Reps. Jayapal, Pocan, Castro, and Chu calling on the House Appropriations to #DefundHate.
  • Prescription Drug Pricing – Pelosi will possibly put out a summary this week of the opposing bill, which Indivisible does not support (we support the Doggett Bill as it is more friendly for consumers).
    • Policy is working with Public Citizen to put out a press statement, and will be inviting partners from the prescription drug table to sign on (such as Ce3nter for popular Democracy, Housing works, etc.).
  • Raise the Wage – Would raise the minimum wage to $15/hour. There are 200+ co-sponsors, but Pelosi won’t bring it to the floor until there are 218 co-sponsors.

Focus on Impeachment

Impeachment discussions are heating up. At our May 26 meeting, the consensus of our group was to support Marin Indivisible’s Public Statement on Congressional Oversight calling for impeachment hearings if Trump stonewalling of congressional subpoenas continues.  Mueller’s statement Wednesday added pressure on Democrats to take a stand on impeachment. An action item for local Indivisibles this week is to urge Members of Congress to “support Rep. Rashida Tlaib’s Impeachment Resolution (H.Res.257);Barbara Lee is already a co-sponsor, so ours would be calls to support her position. Finally, the May National Indivisible Leah/Ezra letter newsletter makes the case that regardless of the political pros and cons, “it’s the constitutional duty of the U.S. House of Representatives to begin impeachment proceedings.”