2017 ACTION PLANS

What’s Next?

Actions for the Week of May 22 from Indivisible Austin

Visit our Actions for the Week page all week long--we post updates to actions and add new ones as circumstances change.

Highlights of This Week's Actions

Full Details, Scripts, and Resources are on our Actions for the Week Page

ALL WEEK: Help Indivisible Austin Grow

To ensure the health and longevity of our organization, Indivisible Austin is expanding its leadership team. Help us make sure that a diverse and representative group of Austinites know about this opportunity by sharing this application link—and applying!

ALL WEEK: Get ready to stake out Sen. John Cornyn's offices until he can provide answers on Russia

This is a statewide action, so please spread the word outside of Austin. Here's how it works:

  1. Visit cornynstakeout.com
  2. Connect with your local Indivisible group to sponsor a shift at one of Sen. Cornyn's six offices, May 30 - June 2
  3. If you need help finding a group, or want to sponsor a stakeout, email stakeout@indivisibleaustin.com

If you can't come to the stakeout, call Sen. Cornyn and ask why he recommended an independent investigation of Hillary Clinton's emails but won't do the same for Russian election interference.

Monday, May 22

All Day, call Mayor Steve Adler to thank him for taking legal action against SB4 and standing with the immigrant community

Phone: (866) 587-6101

Sample script (but feel free to put into your own words, or tell your personal story):

My name is .... I'm an Austin resident an I want to thank the mayor for taking legal action against SB4 and supporting the immigrant community and people of color who will be targeted by this racist bill. 

All day. Tell Gov. Greg Abbott and Lt. Governor Dan Patrick to stop targeting vulnerable Texas children

Gov. Greg Abbott
Office Line: (512) 463-2000

Lt. Governor Dan Patrick
Comment Line: (512) 463-5342
Office Line: (512) 463-0001


From Equality Texas, May 21, 2017:

Tonight, the state of Texas voted to advance two bills that discriminate against LGBTQ Texans. SB 2078 allows for continued discrimination against transgender students with regard to restroom facilities and HB 3859 allows faith based child welfare providers to use taxpayer money to refuse to serve LBGTQ people. No amount of discrimination is acceptable. There is no middle ground. All discrimination is bad, full stop. Targeting some of the most vulnerable children in our state is abhorrent, shameful, and disgraceful. The Texas lawmakers of the 85th legislative session are on the wrong side of history. No matter how upset or scared our LGBTQ friends and families are feeling this evening, Equality Texas wants you to know that we stand with you; and we will fight to protect you.”


Tuesday, May 23

Noon. Die-In at John Cornyn’s Austin office, hosted by Indivisible TX-10.

The senate is currently working on a plan to repeal the Affordable Care Act and implement “TrumpCare 2.0.” We must send a strong message to Senator Cornyn that stripping away healthcare from millions of Americans is simply unacceptable

WHERE: Senator John Cornyn’s Austin Office 221 W 6th St #1530 Austin, TX 78701

PARKING INFO: There are some metered spots along the street, and there are several parking garages in the area. Please arrive at least 15 minutes early to find parking and walk to the location. Share as widely as possible! Looking forward to seeing you there!

Facebook event: https://www.facebook.com/events/408221736227492/

8 p.m. Conference Call on #TrumpRussia and the #CornynStakout

For participants in and organizers of the Cornyn Stakeout
Guest Speakers:

  • Daniel Epstein, West Texans Concerned About Vladimir Putin
  • Kell Simon, Kell Simon Law

Dial-in:

1-(712) 770-8067
Code: 409542 

WednesdayMay 24

All day. CBO score expected on the AHCA. Keep calling your reps!

The Congressional Budget Office is expected to release its score on the AHCA. The score will almost certainly reveal the AHCA for the train wreck that it is. Keep calling Senators Cornyn and Cruz, as well as your House representative, to let them know what you think of this bill.

Thursday, May 25

11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Indivisible Women's Lunchtime Coffee Meetup!

NeWorlDeli
4101 Guadalupe St.

Introducing the Indivisible Women's Lunchtime Coffee Meetup inaugural event. This is intended as a safe space to get to know each other, network, discuss our activism activities, check in about how we're holding up, and see if we can offer help, resources, and connections for our various resistance activities. This will be a facilitated discussion and every attempt will be made to make sure everyone attending has a chance to be heard and offer their thoughts, struggles, questions, etc. NeWorlDeli has the perfect mix of ambiance, fantastic sandwiches, soups, salads, coffee, desserts, and, as necessary, alcohol ;-) We'll be arriving just as they open, fyi. Please consider purchasing something to support the establishment and thank them for generously hosting. Tentatively, we're planning this to be one of the mix of monthly Indivisible Coffee Meetups.

Facebook Event:

https://www.facebook.com/events/1451845914888912


5:00 - 7:00 pm ACA vs. AHCA: What the Healthcare?! Small Biz owner/Self-Employed Trumpcare Crash Course

Are you confused and concerned about what might happen to your health care if the American Health Care Act (aka Trumpcare) becomes law? Do you work for yourself or only employ a handful of folks? Come out and let Cheasty Anderson, Senior Policy Associate for Children's Defense Fund-TX and Cover Texas Now, break down what could change for freelancers, small biz owners, and other entrepreneurs if Trumpcare replaces Obamacare. Then find out what you can do to convince our U.S. Senators Cornyn and Cruz to consider the Texas microbusiness community when they're deciding the future of our health care. BYO snacks, beer, wine, and questions!

Fibercove is on the opposite end of the parking lot from Snooze Cafe on South Lamar.

A project of TX21 Indivisible and the Texas Microbusiness Coalition.

RSVP Here

Friday, May 26 - Sunday, May 28

Three-day Campaign Bootcamp from the New Politics Forum


From the organizers: Campaign Bootcamp is a three-day nonpartisan training that gives young people the opportunity to experience a practical introduction to what it's like to work on and run a political campaign. 

Learn more and register

Monday, May 29

9.30 a.m. Fight Back Against Anti-Immigrant SB4

Texas State Capitol From the organizer, United We Dream:

This is the summer of resistance. We have testified, rallied, protested and marched across the state of Texas to stop the racist bill SB4. And we are not stopping now.

On May 29th, the Texas state capitol is our house. We will show legislators and the world what our community looks like.

We will continue to build, unite, educate and inform our Texas community of the actions we can take so that SB4 does not go into effect September 1st.

Bring your family and friends -- the Capitol is OURS , and we need as many of us in it to fight back!

Register here for this event
____

View more events on our community calendar

This week your House reps are scheduled to be in their home district. There are numerous AHCA protests at various stages of planning. We have a full listing here

View more events on our community calendar

View Archives

 Center for Public Policy Priorities Point of Order for the week of 5/22/2017 

The Main Event

Many of us spent the weekend at the Capitol, where lawmakers passed several measures that could have negative consequences for children, families and our economy. Here are just a few lowlights and highlights from the weekend's action:

While it's good to see that the Senate and House conferees have reached consensus on a state budget, it's too early to tell how damaging it will be for hard-working Texans. Lawmakers should use more of the state's Rainy Day Fund than they are proposing, rather than cutting and underfunding key programs like Medicaid. CPPP's Eva DeLuna Castro has the latest on where we are with the state budget and what comes next.

Around 1:00 this morning, the Texas Senate approved a school voucher scheme that will rob taxpayer money from public schools and give it to private schools. What started as a good school finance bill in the Texas House turned into a voucher bill that does not help remodel our state's school finance system. Read more from CPPP Executive Director Ann Beeson and see the impact the voucher program would have on each Texas school district

In a bit of good news, the Texas House approved elements of Senate Bill 2 that make some good changes to property tax appraisal boards and notification requirements. The House has apparently decided to not act on the harmful rollback rate provisions of the Senate version of SB 2 and instead move the transparency provisions of the House version of SB 2 into another bill. At this point it appears that there will be no change this session in the ability of cities and counties to support firefighters, police officers and other critical services.

Take Action

Protect Texas Dream Act StudentsSB 1467 by Sen. Royce West would create a new state work study program intended to get students off campus and help them gain the professional experience necessary to excel in their careers. Unfortunately, an amendment was adopted by the Senate to limit eligibility to those who qualify for federal financial aid -- a move intended to exclude Texas Dream Act students. By extending in-state tuition and grant eligibility to residents of the state who are not U.S. Citizens or Permanent Residents, the Texas Dream Act provides a pathway to opportunity critical to our continued economic prosperity. The move by the Senate to exclude Texas Dream Act students in SB 1467 is a short-sighted rejection of immigrant culture that will hurt the state in the long-run. Contact your Senator, and tell them to support the House version of SB 1467.

Coming Up This Week

Kinship Care- HB 4An important kinship care bill, HB 4, by Rep. Cindy Burkett passed the Senate today. Kinship caregivers consist of family members and friends who have stepped up to provide homes for children whose parents cannot care for them. Although kinship caregivers have voluntarily stepped in to become substitute parents, many have limited resources and struggle to assume the sudden financial burden of parenting. HB 4 will help certain kinship caregivers within the CPS system by expanding the eligibility of financial assistance. The modest subsidy in this legislation would be well below the true cost of raising a child, but will still be a meaningful improvement over the current system. We thank the Senate for passing this important legislation.

Mental Health Support- HB 10 and HB 1486HB 10 passed unanimously out of the Senate Business and Commerce Committee last week. Now, the bill stands on the Senate intent calendar and could be heard as soon as this week.This good bill by Chairman Four Price directly addresses some ongoing challenges related tomental health parity. HB 10 uses oversight, data collection, cross-agency collaboration and consumer assistance, all of which will help ensure that more Texans have equal access to mental health services through their health insurance plans. Another important mental health bill, HB 1486, is also on the Senate intent calendar. The bill aims to broaden access to mental health and substance use disorder services, and allows those services to be reimbursed under Medicaid.

Report from the Texas Democratic Party’s Fair Shot Summit:

Over 250 individuals participated in the training the first weekend of April and learned how to organize in a non-election year. Check out the Texas Democratic Party’s Training Bookshelf, an online resource for political organizing. Training modules, webinar links, templates and forms are included for many topics such as Digital Oraganizing, Canvass for Community, outreach to various groups, Texas VAN guidance, voter registration etc.

For weekly webinars on a variety of topics including setting up a block walk, volunteer recruitment etc, register below:

Setting Up Your First Blockwalk Wednesday, April 12th 5:30 pm.

Best Practices: Volunteer Recruitment for your Block Walk Wednesday, April 19th 5:30 pm.

Using My Campaign to Promote and Track Your Events Wednesday, April 26th 5:30 pm.

Hosting Social Events People Love Wednesday, May 3 5:30 pm.

Progress Check and Sharing Best Practices Wednesday, May 10 5:30 pm. 

Check out the website of our May speaker from Common Cause Texas, Jc Dufresne, here.

A Suggested Resistance Plan:

1)     Download the “Indivisible” document. Skim the philosophy. Carry out the actions which are listed above weekly.

2)     Every day, email your legislators. Check your voter registration card for who represents you. Bookmark their websites (Look at the heading above labelled Elected Officials. You can send an email from there). Calls are fine, but phones are busy; mailboxes are full.  My 7 daily emails go to: Governor, Lt. Governor, TX senator,  TX representative, US senators, US representative. Don’t bother with anyone who isn’t your legislator.

3)     Click the boxes asking to be on their mailing lists.

4)     Pick one topic each day for the US: cabinet picks, ACA, education, voter ID laws, etc. Write the same 3 or 4 sentences to each one. Do the same for the state reps.

5)     Don’t ramble, name call, curse. State your opinion. Say thanks.

6)     Visit your legislators’ local offices. Talk to their staffers. Be nice. State your message clearly.

7)     Go to your legislators’ town halls. State your opinions.

8)     Join local groups with like minds. They give you confidence, reassurance, energy to keep this up for the long haul. They will go with you to offices and town halls.

9)     Do these things. You’ll be rewarded with a good night’s sleep. 

Daily Action Alerts

Text the word “DAILY” to number 228466. Once you enter your zip code, Daily Action will send you a text each business day for an easy action step you can take.  You will be connected to your Senator’s voice mail. If the voicemail box is full, please send an email by clicking on the Elected Officials link above. You can select your Senator and easily send an email from the Senator’s contact page (See Elected Officials above).

Other 2017 action plans and helpful organizations and websites

Check out  the website Texas Legislature Online to follow bills in the 85th Legislative Session. Through this website, you can sign up to follow bills online, get information on committee members in both the Texas House and Senate, follow the calendars of each house.

Check out the state-focused nonprofit, the State Innovation Exchange (SiX), developed by progressives  in 2014 to counteract ALEC, the conservative nonprofit that produces pro-industry measures drafted by state legislatures and corporate lobbyists. You can sign up to receive emails describing what SiX is up to in the states.

Check out INDIVISIBLE: A Practical Guide for Resisting the Trump Agenda. An even more comprehensive guide than the one described  below in 1. It was developed by congressional staffers who describe the tactics the Tea Party used to affect Congress since 2010.

Check out the Center for Public Policy Priorities website and sign-up to receive a weekly email newsletter with action items. Ann Beeson, the Executive Director spoke at the January 9, 2017 meeting and described the organization’s focus on helping Texans become healthy, well-educated and financially secure.

Below is a list of many action groups in the Austin area. Check out their websites for more info about them.

Texas Progressive Action Network (a Southwest Austin group) - https://www.facebook.com/groups/txprogressiveactionnetwork/

Pantsuit Austin - https://www.facebook.com/Pantsuit-Nation-Austin-1233236256735205/

Austin Justice Coalition - https://www.facebook.com/austinjusticecoalition/

Code Blue - www.facebook.com/groups/1809731652643344/

Left Up to Us - https://www.facebook.com/leftuptous/?fref=ts

Common Grounds - https://www.facebook.com/search/top/?q=common%20ground%20for%20texans

Activate Austin - https://www.facebook.com/ActivateAustinTX/

Austin Democrats Moving Forward - https://www.facebook.com/groups/AustinDemocratsMovingForward/

Northwest Hills Pantsuit - https://www.facebook.com/Pantsuit-Nation-Austin-1233236256735205/

Activate Austin - https://www.facebook.com/ActivateAustinTX/

Austin Women’s Activism - https://www.facebook.com/groups/1209126665814114/

Better Together ATX - www.facebook.com/BetterTogetherATX/?fref=ts

Move On - https://www.facebook.com/moveon/

Austin Tejano Democrats - https://www.facebook.com/groups/8310263446/

Black Austin Democrats - https://www.facebook.com/blackaustindemocrats/

Women for Good Government - http://wggaustin.wixsite.com/wggaustinhttps://www.facebook.com/groups/621916757871227/

March On! Texas – marchontexas.com

TX21 Indivisible - https://tx21indivisible.us/

Indivisible Austin – www.indivisibleaustin.com

TX 25 Indivisible We Stand - https://www.facebook.com/tx25Indivisible/

Measure Austin - https://www.facebook.com/measureaustin/

Blue Mom Group - https://www.facebook.com/groups/ATXBlueMomGroup/

Travis County Asian American Democrats - https://www.facebook.com/AustinAsianDems/

Black Lives Matter Austin - https://www.facebook.com/BlackLivesMatterAustin/

Democratic Socialists of America Austin Chapter - http://dsaaustin.org/

Capital Area Progressive Democrats - http://capdaustintx.org/home/

Stonewall Democrats - http://www.stonewallaustin.org/

Our Revolution Austin - https://www.facebook.com/OurRevolutionAustin/

Fight for 15 Texas - https://www.facebook.com/Fightfor15TX/


More Ideas:

1.  Communicate to members of congress at every opportunity. Emily Ellsworth, a former Congressional staffer, recommends the following strategies when communicating with a member of Congress:  

   a. Tweeting and Facebook posts are largely ineffective. Better to write a letter to the district office, not an email or letter to DC. The most effective thing to do is to call at the district office.

   b. Show up at town hall meetings, preferably with a large group.

   c. If you run an advocacy group, invite local staffers to your events.

   d. Remember the staff run the ground game for Congress. Be kind but firm with them.

See Emily’s complete report here.  

2. Contact your representative about current issues important to youe.g. the appointment of Steve Bannon as Trump’s strategist or Jeff Sessions as Attorney General. Check out “We’re His Problem Now” Calling Sheet for exactly what you can say. On the site, click the Weekly Call to Action tab for updates.



3. Become a Volunteer Deputy Voter Registrar so that you can register voters for future elections. Bruce Elfant, Travis County Tax Assessor and Voter Registrar, has offered frequent training sessions. Click here for information and volunteering.

4. Express your support for the ACA.  Paul Ryan is conducting a phone poll on the ACA (Obamacare). Call 202 225-3031 and press 2 to weigh in. After a brief recording about HR-3762, Ryan’s proposal to gut ACA, you can vote 1 to support the ACA.

5. Call the House Oversight Committee (202 225-5074) to support the call for a bipartisan revew of Trump’s financials and apparent conflicts of interest. Also, use the links in the section Elected Officials to write to your senators and representatives.

6. Find out who your precinct chair is and volunteer to help. If your precinct does not have a chair, volunteer to be one. It’s not hard!!


7Help identify potential Democratic candidates for 2018 and 2020. We need to do this now.

8Keep up with the state legislature and attend hearings. The Texas Tribune is a great source on legislative issues. 

9. Donate to the Travis County Democratic Party and volunteer with them.

10Volunteer at a nonprofit or public service organization.

11. Subscribe to the Washington Post or the New York Times to support the media.






© Circle C Area Democrats 2015