June 20 URGENT state action: Urge Gov. Snyder to veto “Choose Life” license plate bill

Greetings, FAM. I just learned (via the FAM FB page) that SB163–the bill that would have the state develop and issue a plate with the message “Choose Life,” the proceeds of which would go to a fund controlled by the anti-abortion group Right to Life Michigan–is on the Governor’s desk for signature. You can see the progress of the bill here. It was presented to him yesterday.

Please take a moment this afternoon to contact Governor Snyder and urge him to veto SB163. You can contact him via email here or you can call 517-335-7858. You can use the following script if you would like (adapted from one provided by Michigan Resistance):

“Governor Snyder, I am contacting you to voice my strong opposition to SB163, the ‘Choose Life’ license plate bill. This bill is an attack on women’s health. I oppose exploiting State resources to subsidize an organization that doesn’t even provide health care, but focuses instead on conducting its own political campaign.

The proposed license plates do not generate money for education or contraception access, two things proven to reduce abortion rates. I disagree with the creation of a fundraising mechanism for an ideological group that stands in the way of reducing abortion rates.

Governor Snyder, please courageously prioritize women’s health by focusing on solutions for the state’s high unintended pregnancy rates and for reducing abortion rates. Please don’t sign SB163.”

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Week of June 13 actions: Help beautify Hancock, RSVP for “How to Run for Local Office Workshop,” & call about AHCA

Good afternoon, FAM!

Local: I learned today that there is a need for volunteers to plant annuals along Hancock’s main street. Although this isn’t a political action, it is a way to beautify and spread good will in our local community, and I thought some of you might be interested. Here is the information I have: “This is the first year in quite a while that there will be annuals planted down Hancock’s main street (Quincy Street). It’s rather involved so the following times have been allotted for prepping and planting so all flowers will be in place for the upcoming Bridgefest weekend.

Tuesday/today – 5 to 7 pm
Wednesday – beginning around 2pm through 7pm
Thursday – from 11am to 2pm and 4pm to ?
Friday – from 9am- 11am

Your help would be appreciated if you can spare an hour or two. The more the merrier. Let me know and plan to bring gloves, hand garden tools, etc. Thanks!”

If you can spare some time to help with the planting, please do! Contact Jeannie (jsdecler@mtu.edu) for more information.

Local (via Houghton County Democratic Party). RSVP for “How to Run for Local Office Workshop.”

RSVP by emailing Valorie Troesch at vtroesch@gmail.com, or RSVP on the Facebook event.

On Monday, June 19, from 6:00 – 9:00 pm, the HCDP is hosting a workshop on running for local office at the Portage Lake District Library. According to the Facebook event page, “this Workshop will address the truths and myths about what it takes to run for local office. If you have ever considered putting your hat in the ring, this workshop is for you! Come and learn:

What are the local elective and appointed positions and what are the qualifications for these offices?

How do I get on the ballot?

How do I prepare myself to run for local office?

How do I run a winning campaign?

You won’t be in this alone – What resources are there to support me?

Hear from others who have been there.”

This promises to be an excellent and informative workshop, and I hope to see you there!

Federal (via Rise UP Individible). “AHCA is on the fast track to get passed this month and is currently in the hands of 13 male U.S. senators. Everyone else has been left in the dark, as far as we know. Our parent organization, Indivisible, has requested us to join a furious campaign this month to get in touch with our senators and express our dismay (you can read Indivisible’s alert on our FaceBook page. Here are some highlights that you can begin to do immediately)”:

Wednesday, June 14 is National Senate Call-In Day:Our senators Stabenow and Peters are strong supporters of improving the ACA. They should be as fired up as you are and doing everything within their power to stop or slow the process in the Senate. Ask them to withhold consent on all Senate business until Republicans agree to hold a public hearing on TrumpCare.

Here’s a suggested script (you can request to speak to a HEALTH STAFFER instead of the intern or aide answering your call):

Senator Stabenow: 202-224-4822
Senator Peters: 202-224-6221

‘Hi, my name is __________ and I live at ______________. I hope Senator (Stabenow) (Peters) is fired up about fact that the Senate might decide on passing their version of the AHCA without consulting the rest of the Senate and without getting approval from the CBO (Congressional Budget Office). I ask the Senator to withhold consent from all Senate business until a public hearing on the AHCA is held.’

We are so lucky that our two senators care deeply about providing decent healthcare for all! If you want to reach across the aisle to people who need more persuading, please contact the following senators, and encourage any family or friends who live in these states to contact them as well: Susan Collins (ME) (202) 224-2523; Lisa Murkowski (AK) (202) 224-6665; Dean Heller (NV) (202) 224-6244; Shelley Moore Capito (WV) (202) 224-6472; Bill Cassidy (LA) (202) 224-5824; Rob Portman (OH) (202) 224-3353; Tom Cotton (AR) (202) 224-2363; Cory Gardner (CO) (202) 224-5941; Jeff Flake (AZ) (202) 224-4521; Pat Toomey (PA) (202) 224-4254; and Dan Sullivan (AK) (202) 224-3004.”

Onward,

M

May 4 Federal Action: AHCA vote this afternoon: call Bergman today!

Congress will be voting on the American Health Care Act, the bill to repeal and replace the ACA, Thursday afternoon despite the fact that the Congressional Budget Office has yet to score it. This lack of a CBO score means that the GOP actually has no way of knowing how much the bill will cost or how many people it will cover.

Please call Bergman (202-225-4735) today and urge him to vote no on the bill. If you are feeling ambitious, you could call other MI representatives–numbers listed below–as well (you might especially want to call Fred Upton to let him know that you are disappointed that he has caved to Trump.

Script (via Michigan Resistance FB page): “Hello, my name is [X] from [CITY]. I am urging Representative [X] to oppose the updated version of the American Health Care Act, which does nothing to address coverage losses, and still puts people with pre-existing conditions at risk. The Upton Amendment doesn’t come close to solving the problem. Will Representative [X] agree to vote against, and publicly fight the updated bill?”

  1. Justin Amash, (3rd District; Grand Rapids): 202-225-3831

  2. Fred Upton (6th District; Kalamazoo): 202-225-3761

  3. Dave Trott (11th District; Bloomfield Hills): 202-225-8171

  4. Tim Walberg (7th District; Monroe): 202-225-6276

  5. Mike Bishop (8th District; Rochester Hills): 202-225-4872

  6. Bill Huizenga (2nd District; Muskegon): 202-225-4401

  7. John Moolenaar (4th District; Midland): 202-225-3561

  8. Paul Mitchell (10th District; Shelby Township): 202-225-2106

Update: Bergman’s DC mailbox is full (which is a good sign) so you may want to try his Traverse City or Marquette numbers first. I was able to leave a message with the Traverse City office. Remember, the vote is happening this afternoon, so call now:

TC: 231-944-7633
Marquette: 906-273-2227

May 3 Federal Actions: Oppose AHCA/MacArthur Amendment, provide feedback to EPA

Good morning, FAM! I hope you are all enjoying the long-awaited arrival of Spring in the Keweenaw today. But on to less sunny topics:

As you are no doubt well aware, the GOP is renewing its efforts to revive and pass the American Health Care Act (AHCA), a.k.a. Trumpcare. Here is an excellent overview from FiveThirtyEight of the biggest changes to healthcare in the latest version of the bill, as well as those proposed by the MacArthur amendment. (Spoiler alert: they’re not good changes. They’re bad. Bigly bad).

This week, please call Representative Bergman (DC: 202-225-4735; TC: 231-944-7633; Marquette: 906-273-2227) to voice your strong opposition to the latest version of the AHCA, including the MacArthur Amendment. If you would like a script to follow, you can use this one courtesy of Indivisible and Families USA.

Also, as a result of Executive Order 13777, the EPA’s Office of Water is “seeking public input on existing regulations that could be repealed, replaced or modified to make them less burdensome.” You can join a Public Listening Session that begins today at 11:00, or you can submit comments online. For more information or to submit a comment, visit this page.

Thanks for your good work.

M

April 10 FAM – local opportunities for action & protect women’s health

Happy Monday, FAM. There are lots of opportunities for political action at the local level this week, so I’ll get right to it:

Local (via FAM calendar).

Meet & Greet & Potluck with Dr. Abdul El-Sayed – Candidate for Governor is tonight (4/10) at the Super 8 in Houghton. 6:30 pm. Bring a dish to pass.

Houghton County Board of Commissioners meeting is tomorrow, April 11, at 5:00 pm. (Conference room, 5th floor of the Houghton County courthouse)

Houghton City Council meeting is Weds, April 12, at 5:30 pm. (Council Chambers, City Center, 616 Shelden Ave.)

Representative Jack Bergman (invited) Town Hall. Thursday, April 13, 7:00 – 9:00 pm. Masonic Square Red Room 128 W Washington St, Marquette, MI

Marquette Repair Café. Saturday, April 15, 12:00 – 4:00. Marquette Art and Culture Center, Peter White Public Library, Marquette, MI

Trump Tax Day March. Saturday, April 15, 11:00am – 2:00 pm. Meet at Peter White Library, 217 N Front St., Marquette MI.

Federal (via Daily Action). THE WAR ON WOMEN GOES GLOBAL.

“Last week, the Trump administration defunded the United Nations Population Fund, the largest international maternal health organization on the planet, which provides family planning and reproductive health services in more than 150 countries. This includes emergency obstetric care, midwife training, and fistula repair.

Last year, the United States’ contribution of $69 million–or the price of roughly 35 taxpayer-funded weekends at Mar a Lago–helped prevent roughly 10,000 maternal deaths and 100,000 unsafe abortions.

Today’s Daily Action is to ask your Member of Congress to state public support for the United Nations Population Fund. Women’s lives depend on it.”

Bergman’s DC number: 202-225-4735

Suggested script:

“Hello, my name is (NAME), I am a US citizen living in Michigan, my zip code is (ZIP). I am calling to urge Representative Bergman to lend public support to the U.N. Population fund. As I see it, his choice is as simple as this: Does he stand for death in childbirth, female genital mutilation, and the uncontrolled spread of HIV, or does he stand for healthy mothers and babies and basic human rights?

Please ask Representative Bergman to show the people that he values the safety and care of hundreds of thousands of women and children over party rhetoric; ONE preventable death or ONE mutilated girl is one too many. I urge him to make a public stand for the U.N. Population Fund because it takes more than missiles to protect women and children.”

Onward,

M

March 27 – Daily Actions: Russia investigation and thanks, governor!

Hello, FAM! I hope that you all had a restful weekend and enjoyed the knowledge that the ACA remains intact (at least for the time being). Here are your suggested actions for today:

Federal (via FAM FB): “Call all of your MoC to demand an independent investigation of the possibility that Russia interfered with our election and that the Trump campaign may have colluded with Russia in the process. The actions of Senate Intelligence Chair Nunes last week clearly indicate that committee is compromised and Nunes is more interested in communicating with President Trump than finding the truth.”

Additionally, Indivisible suggests the following talking points:

  • “Tell your Representative to cosponsor H.R. 356, the Protecting our Democracy Act, which would create a special commission to investigate Russian interference into our elections.
  • Tell your Senator to cosponsor S. 27, which would similarly create an independent commission to investigate Russian interference in our democratic institutions.”

Representative Bergman: 202-225-4735
Senator Stabenow: 202-224-4822
Senator Peters: 202-224-6221

State (also via FAM FB): How about some positive reinforcement? FAM suggests that we “call Governor Snyder and thank him for having the wisdom to request the Medicaid expansion to the ACA, and for protecting our health care during the threat to repeal the ACA. (Remember, he reached out to all the Republican members and asked them to not vote for the replacement.)”

Governor Snyder: 517-373-3400

Onward,

M

March 24 – Federal actions: AHCA & Gorsuch filibuster

Good morning, FAM, and happy Friday! As I’m sure you are already aware, the AHCA vote was delayed due to lack of support. (We’ll put aside for now the fact that many in the GOP don’t support it because they want to make it even more terrible; at least it is still hung up.) Keep calling Representative Bergman (202-225-4735) and other Republican reps to pressure them to vote no and to encourage them to resist Trump’s bullying.

But first, let’s call Senators Stabenow and Peters to thank Dems for fillibustering Gorsuch’s nomination, even if the effort ultimately proves to be futile. An administration under investigation for collusion with Russia should not be appointing justices to our Supreme Court.
Sen Stabenow: (202) 224-4822
Sen Peters: (202) 224-6221

Then, call Rep. Bergman (202-225-4735) once again to remind him that his constituents are not in favor of the ACHA. Here’s a new script that you can use, via Daily Action:

“Hello. My name is (NAME), I live in Michigan, and my zip code is (ZIP). I am calling to demand you vote against the GOP plan that replaces the ACA (Obamacare). You were not appointed by President Trump, you were elected by the people, millions of whom will be hurt by the American Health Care Act.

Show the people that you won’t be bullied by President Trump and prove that you are working for them, not against them.

Thank you.”

If you are feeling ambitious, you could also call these Republican reps:

  1. Justin Amash, (3rd District; Grand Rapids): 202-225-3831

  2. Fred Upton (6th District; Kalamazoo): 202-225-3761

  3. Dave Trott (11th District; Bloomfield Hills): 202-225-8171

  4. Tim Walberg (7th District; Monroe): 202-225-6276

  5. Mike Bishop (8th District; Rochester Hills): 202-225-4872

  6. Bill Huizenga (2nd District; Muskegon): 202-225-4401

  7. John Moolenaar (4th District; Midland): 202-225-3561

  8. Paul Mitchell (10th District; Shelby Township): 202-225-2106

Onward,

M