MONDAY 8/7/2017

FEDERAL:

Protect Special Counsel Robert Mueller and Future Independent Investigations:

We have one of those rare occasions where Senator Tillis is doing something right. He is co-sponsoring a bill with Democrat Christopher Coons that would make it more difficult for a President to fire a special counsel. If a President did so, the special counsel would then have 14 days to appeal the firing to a three-judge panel that would review the firing. The bill would be retroactive to May 17, the day Mueller was appointed. Let’s call Senator Tillis to *thank* him for co-sponsoring this bill and call Burr and our Congressional reps to encourage them to support it. On Sunday, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein confirmed that the scope of the investigation will follow the facts, despite threats from Trump.

Background: https://www.washingtonpost.com/powerpost/rosenstein-special-counsel-mueller-can-investigate-any-crimes-he-uncovers-in-russia-probe/2017/08/06/2209365a-7aae-11e7-83c7-5bd5460f0d7e_story.html?utm_term=.07351ad54863

Tillis script:

Hi, I am a constituent from ________________ calling to thank Senator Tillis for co-sponsoring legislation that would protect special counsels from being fired by the President. This is a good bill that would restore balance between the three major branches of government. I would encourage Senator Tillis to continue to ensure that the Mueller investigation is allowed to proceed so that we can trust that future elections are conducted fairly and without external influence. Thank you for taking my call.

Burr/Congress script:

Hi, I am a constituent from ________________ calling to encourage Sen./Rep. ________________ to support the bill co-sponsored by Senator Tillis and Senator Coons that would protect special counsels from being fired by the President. This is a good bill that would restore balance between the three major branches of government. I would encourage Sen./Rep. ________________  to continue to ensure that the Mueller investigation is allowed to proceed so that we can trust that future elections are conducted fairly and without external influence. Thank you for taking my call.

Save the ACA

This fight is far from over, as several Republicans have realized that by October they will have lost the chance to pass health care through budget reconciliation, which would require only 50 votes. At that time, the 60 vote threshold would apply, which by default would have to include Democrats. Speaking of which, other Republicans in both the Senate and the House, including the bipartisan Problem Solvers’ Caucus, have vowed to work within the system to make much needed improvements to the existing law, the ACA. The people have spoken, and after multiple failed attempts to reach 50 votes in the Senate, it is time for leadership to cut its losses, pull up its big-boy pants, and do its job: governing the nation. Trump’s idea to defund critical insurance subsidies to states is petty, irresponsible, and mean. Lawmakers who continue to sit on the health care fence will be responsible for the lack of critical medical care for their constituents. After the script we will provide an outstanding resource compiled by our friends at Stronger NC. This health care took kit breaks down all the nuances of various proposals, giving you a sturdy base from which to advocate. Included are some detailed, excellent calls to action. Background:

http://thehill.com/policy/healthcare/345385-five-tough-decisions-for-the-gop-on-healthcare

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/08/05/us/politics/lamar-alexander-health-care.html

http://www.npr.org/2017/07/31/540652500/bipartisan-group-of-lawmakers-seeks-common-ground-on-health-care

 

SCRIPT:

I am a constituent calling from ______________ to urge Rep./Sen. _______________ to begin the process of reforming the ACA. While far from perfect, this program is the law of the land. Please work across the aisle to strengthen this critical program. At the very least, please repudiate Donald Trump’s call to defund critical subsidies that would let the ACA “implode.” That action would be the height of irresponsibility. Thanks for taking my call.

 

STRONGER NC HEALTH CARE TOOLKIT:

http://strongernc.org/wp-content/uploads/2017-08-05-AHCA-Toolkit-1.pdf

 

Senator Richard Burr

 Washington, DC: (202) 224-3154

Winston-Salem: (336) 631-5125

 

Senator Thom Tillis

 Washington, DC: (202) 224-6342 

High Point: (336) 885-0685

 

HOUSE:

Rep. Virginia Foxx

Clemmons, NC (336) 778-0211

Washington, DC (202) 225-2071

 

Rep. Ted Budd

Advance, NC (336) 998-1313

Washington, DC (202-225-4531

 

Rep. Mark Walker

Greensboro, NC (336) 333-5005

Washington, DC (202) 225-3065

STATE:

Redistricting:

After a year of foot-dragging, and claims that it has not drawn any secret maps, the state GOP leadership says that it wants your feedback. Cynically, we think this is because a court has ordered that if it does so, the legislature can buy two extra weeks to draw the maps. We have heard reports of some ridiculous proposals coming in, including a suggestion on Twitter that maps be drawn “alphabetically.” Luckily, we have you covered: some of the foremost experts on redistricting in North Carolina have compiled some suggestions for you. Let’s give the legislature the benefit of the doubt, and give them our ideas. Comments submitted will be part of the permanent record of our government, and could provide a useful tool to the inevitable court challenges coming down the road.

SCRIPT/ACTIONS (credit to Aylett Colston and Together We Will):

Submit a public comment about redistricting and fair maps on NCGA website NOW:http://bit.ly/2tT4sIH

In addition, you can email feedback to: 2017houseredistricting@ncleg.net and2017senateredistricting@ncleg.net

Written comments can be mailed to: Redistricting, 300 N. Salisbury Street, Suite 545, Raleigh, NC 27603-5925

Suggested script, personalize and pick a few points (we don’t want them to dismiss us as using form letters): As an NC voter, I support districts that accurately represent ALL the citizens of the state. I want to see these criteria used to create maps for NC Senate and House and US Congressional districts that represent ALL NC citizens, not just those of one party:

Compliance with the US Constitution and the Voting Rights Act (VRA) of 1965

Districts with equal population to the greatest extent possible.

Districts that are geographically compact and contiguous.

Boundaries that respect communities of interest; specifically areas with shared social and economic interests, such as those shared by an agricultural community, an industrial area, or an area in which people share local natural resources for their livelihood (for example, fishing in coastal areas).

Competitive districts to the greatest extent possible, as long as there’s no detriment to other criteria.

Districts that are NOT established with the major purpose of diluting the voting strength of any people or groups, including any political party.

The residence of any incumbent or political candidate should NOT be considered.

Districts should NOT be drawn for the purpose of favoring or discriminating against any incumbent, political candidate, or political party.