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Fight Back Against Trump’s Policy of Separating Migrant Families At the Border: Resources Gathered by Activist Alida Garcia, the Today Show, Celeste Pewter, and More

Fight back against the sick, immoral Trump administration policy of separating migrant families at America’s borders with these resources gathered by organizer Alida Garcia and the Today show.

 

Since news broke about the effects of Team Trump’s unspeakable zero-tolerance stance, many good tweets, posts, and stories have gone up that detail things you can do to help.

 

In noting these resources, we at OTYCD have realized that almost all of them come from a pair of Twitter threads by activist Alida Garcia.

 

Here are the two resources that are not from her.

 

First is a fine backgrounder from Politifact that explains what Team Trump’s policy is and isn’t, explains how the government behaved before, and delineates important nuances, such as how the almost 1,500 kids that the government can no longer track arrived here alone, as unaccompanied minors:

 

Read the Politifact article, which dates to June 6, 2018:

http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/article/2018/jun/06/what-you-need-know-about-trump-administrations-zer/

 

 

Second is a page from the Today show website that includes links to five organizations that help immigrant kids:

https://www.today.com/parents/how-help-immigrant-children-separated-families-t129923

 

Third is a Medium post on how to help from our friend Celeste Pewter (@Celeste_Pewter). Because WordPress doesn’t seem to like Medium for some unknown reason, we’ve hyperlinked it. Pewter’s story also includes ways for Americans overseas to help.

 

Fourth is Slate’s contribution, Here’s How You Can Fight Family Separation at the Border:

https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2018/06/how-you-can-fight-family-separation-at-the-border.html

View story at Medium.com

 

 

In case you’re not on Twitter or can’t find the tweet now, Garcia (@leedsgarcia) detailed several useful options in a thread she tweeted on June 9, 2018, and in a second thread sent on June 16, 2018.

 

We’re reproducing both here while omitting actions that have since expired, and adding a boldface note on the one that happens today (June 17, 2018). We’ve also reproduced the tweets as they were written.

 

One last note before you read the Garcia threads: You are seeing comparisons between these camps and Nazi concentration camps for a reason. This is how concentration camps start. The Nazis did not start with the goal of working and starving to death any groups who displeased or threatened them. That happened over time.

 

If German citizens had pushed back early, before the concentration camps became death camps, many, many lives could have been saved.

 

Now–right now–is the time to get loud, get mad, and get active. We don’t have concentration camps yet. But if we don’t push back firmly, fiercely, and relentlessly until Team Trump backs down and abandons its family separation policy, these places could devolve into concentration camps.

 

Here are the Garcia threads, which are excellent and crammed with resources:

 

I’m on a plane, so might as well do this. Feeling helpless about the family separations at the border? Guess what, there are many people & organizations who need your help & electeds who need to do more. Things you can do to help parents & kids at the border thread below. 1/

 

Let’s start w/ Texas: One organization that could use your help is – who are they? Well, they are some of the best story-tellers of the border region, however, they are also kind souls taking donations for families sleeping outside of ports of entry in extreme heat 2/

 

Here’s ‘s fundraiser to help volunteers who go to Mexico to assist these families outside. My friend went down there last week & met a family who had been outside for 17 days. They need Diapers, Underwear, Bras, Baby wipes, etc.

( Here is the Netargv link that she included with the tweet: https://netargv.com/2018/06/06/take-action-help-asylum-seekers-at-the-us-port-of-entries-rio-grande-valley/ )

 

But if you think border voices and what’s happening in the region are important to be amplified during this time, please consider donating to generally at: – let’s stay in the RGV for a bit…. /4

 

Reason why “the RGV [Rio Grande Valley] sector” is so important is that the volume of prosecutions of parents being separated in McAllen a& Brownsville is quite high in comparison to other places. Brownsville is also ground zero on the attack on – & when there are multiple fights you need /5

 

Organized local power to build accountability & organizing around these systems & services. 1 of the most powerful & inspirational organizations I’ve worked w/ in my lifetime is – if you want to help people power grow in this region donate here:

 

& of course we can create more accountability if immigrant-supporting civil rights impact litigators have the resources they need to try to intervene in this process in as many ways as possible. One TX based organization doing amazing work is – in the last 2 wks 7/

 

The Texas Civil Rights Project has been able to try to bring some oversight into the separations/prosecutions in the Rio Grande Valley – they’ve put out stories of parents who have been separated & have been reporting the volume of separations. They need help to cover more 8/

 

…proceedings in more courthouses so that litigators trying to stop this have a better sense as to what is happening as this process lacks transparency across the board. You can help do more by supporting them here (also follow them) 9/ :

( Here is the donation link she included: https://texascivilrightsproject.org/donate/)

 

Once parents are separated and prosecuted some move back over into DHS custody and get moved around to other detention centers. This is where having more lawyers who work inside detention centers to help figure out how to get these parents back w/ their kids is important 10/

 

One organization that works with parents in detention centers in Texas is – they have a bond fund to help reunited families and fight their cases from the outside. You can support that bond fund here: 11/

 

Okay let’s pivot to state & local advocacy a bit – because enforcement is increasing and the system is being jammed in different ways, including the admin’s 0 tolerance policy, there just aren’t enough lawyers to advocate on behalf of individuals & families facing deportation 12/

 

What u actually can do is run campaigns in your cities, counties & states demanding your government(s) fund legal services for people going through the deportation process. Many cities & states have invested in this over the last few yrs, so this isn’t a pie in the sky thing 12/

 

It’s like the general concept of access to counsel, and due process, & trying to be a good locality that doesn’t want to just give a green light to the increased enforcement of this admin. Winning these campaigns can help get more lawyers in more detention centers. 13/

 

And let’s pivot to Congress – while these bills don’t necessarily provide vehicles for easy passage, they help create momentum for concrete policy ideas where pieces of the language in these bills can be inserted into other negotiations like appropriations, etc. Main thing 14/

 

Okay sorry plane was landing, So, Bill #1: Fair Day In Court for Kids Act! Please see if your 2 senators are on it! If not, get them on? How do you know if they’re on? I got you:

( Here is her link to the bill, S.2468, on GovTrack. Hawaii Senator Mazie Hirono is the sponsor: https://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/115/s2468 )

 

Here’s a fact sheet, but basically 85% of kids not represented by counsel are deported….because kids should have lawyers and 3 yr olds shouldn’t advocate asylum law in court houses, but read more here:

( Here’s a link to an ACLU fact sheet on the bill: https://www.aclu.org/fact-sheet/fair-day-court-kids-act-factsheet )

 

Okay next bill to make sure your 2 Senators and house member are on: The Help Separated Children Act – this is sponsored by Smith in he Senate and Roybal Allard in the House, here is a list of who is on it so far:

 

Next bill – hot off the presses yesterday from Senator Feinstein – the Keep Families Together Act, this would define when children can be separated from their parents – here is more, make sure both your Senators are on it:

 

& then very wonky, but a very defined group of people to influence is to financially starve the beast that is causing this harm in the appropriations process. Rep. Jayapal led a call this week to stop the finding of the operations doing this:

( Here’s a link to Rep. Jayapal’s tweet: https://twitter.com/RepJayapal/status/1004766949937594369 )

 

 

Decisions like this are negotiated within the Homeland Security subcommittees of both

chambers who negotiate how much funding goes into those bills. Here are their rosters

so you know who to call….

SENATE:

HOUSE:

 

Everything I said in Texas is needed basically everywhere else right now, so check out plug in your zip code find out what orgs are near you & help by volunteering there!

 

Sorry I’m back one more really important tangible TX thing – you can raid your closet & supplie cabinets and send the below items to Catholic Charities RGV’s shelter for refugees. People arrive with nothing this place helps clean, feed, clothe them. Items they need: (She linked to a screenshot, so it can’t be cut and pasted, but you can go to Amazon and find the Wish List for the Catholic Charities of Rio Grande Valley Humanitarian Respite Center.)

 

My friend just sent me this – for those who are interested in helping the children & families separated by the recent raid in Sandusky Ohio, here are a bunch of tangible ways to help those families in middle America:

( She included this link: https://americasvoice.org/uncategorized/advocates-for-basic-legal-equality-able-call-to-action-donate/ )

 

And if you want to do one thing today to help a military family from being separated please call the Miami ICE office for my friend Alejandra today (with a kind & loving & respectful voice) – this link gives instructions, takes 1 minute

( She included this link: https://www.fwd.us/keepalejandra )

 

If folks want to help get the final 3 signatures on the discharge petition to force a vote to someone just sent me which helps focus on who to call today & ask to sign!

[Trump has since said he would not sign a bill of this sort, but here’s the link anyway: https://www.dialingfordreamers.com ]

 

 

That’s her first thread. On June 16, 2018, Alida Garcia tweeted a second thread with still more resources to help combat the Team Trump policy:

 

Hi Pals – I’m on another plane, and posted some additional ways to help in a thread here – happy helping! :

 

One opportunity to help is to volunteer w/ – they are in need of Spanish, Mam, Q’eqchi’ or K’iche’ and have paralegal or legal assistant experience to help w/ their legal intake process in McAllen, TX – here is the volunteer form:

( She included this link: https://texascivilrightsproject.org/keepfamiliestogether-volunteer/ )

 

TCRP is also in need of full time volunteers to help lead a parallel process of intake efforts in Brownsville, Laredo, El Paso, and Alpine, Texas. They can help you with training and capacity to organize legal intake in these cities. Here is the form: 3/

 

If you are in California, is in need of volunteers they need immigration attorneys, paralegals, doctors, nurses, EMTs, social workers, mental health professionals, art therapists, & nice people who want to help out! Here’s the vol form:

(She included this link: https://alotrolado.org/take-action/volunteer/)

 

If you are in Pennsylvania, needs volunteer interpreters, vol attorneys/legal assistants, on the ground advocates for help at the Burkes Family Detention center. Here is their vol form: 5/

 

In Arizona? seeks volunteers as a pro bono attorney, an interpreter, researcher, medical professional, expert witness, or to offer administrative assistance. You can e-mail gmillard@firrp.org for volunteer opportunities & donate here: 6/

( She included this link: https://firrp.org/donate/donate-2/ )

 

Want to help, but can’t travel? My friend has pulled together this Amazon list of specific things that the Sacred Heart Respite Center is in need of for families seeking asylum. I can confirm this is real & going to the right place: 7/

 

In Texas & want to be in community? Come to Father’s Day Vigil tomorrow in McAllen, here is the Facebook event link: 8/

 

In Washington State? has a volunteer form for translators & interpreters & has offices in Granger, Seattle, Tacoma or Wenatchee, over 200 of the parents have been transferred here – 9/

(She included this link: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1CxLlhNYDRXSK-WC_FHgQiAqluOApG9kimV9uD2y_1gM/viewform?edit_requested=true )

 

In the El Paso area? is holding a March to Tornillo – where the tent city for children was built tomorrow [She means June 17, 2018. Note also that there could be other Father’s Day-themed protests relating to these issues happening near you. Check the #FamiliesBelongTogether hashtag for likely leads on local events]. Here is the sign-up link & details for this march: 10/

 

An update on ‘s Keep Families Together Act – below find the current cosponsors. Don’t see your two Senators on there? Call them: (202) 224-3121 11/

(She included a screenshot that we can’t easily reproduce. Check your Senators’ Twitter feeds for statements about the bill.)

 

In Chicago? Flexible volunteering, M-F, at immigration court to provide presence & watch the process & more opportunities w/ the Interfaith Community for Detained Immigrants – form here: 12/

 

 

Subscribe to One Thing You Can Do by clicking the button on the upper right of the page. And tell your friends about the blog!

 

 

Follow Alida Garcia on Twitter for more info and insights on this issue:

@leedsgarcia

Action Alerts · Stand Up for Civilization · Stand Up for Norms

Believe It: You Matter, Part VII: You’ve Got To Stay Here and Carry On The Fight

Believe it, you matter: The meaning of ‘You’ve got to stay here and carry on the fight.’

 

Sarah Jane here.

 

Every now and again you’ll see me slip a line into a post:

 

“You’ve got to stay here and carry on the fight.”

 

It’s a paraphrase of a line in the 1981 film Time Bandits.

 

It comes from a scene toward the end, when (spoiler alert) God (yes, that one) comes to collect the Time Bandits and take them back with him, where they will pay penance for stealing God’s map and traveling through time to commit robberies by serving in lowly jobs with a pay cut back-dated to the beginning of time.

 

One of the Time Bandits asks if Kevin, the young mortal boy who joined them on their travels, can come along to what God calls creation:

 

What about my friend, sir? Can he come with us?

No, of course not. This isn’t a school outing.

But sir, he deserves something. I mean, without him–

Oh. don’t go on about it. He’s got to stay here to carry on the fight.

 

 

The line is mysterious, and deliberately so.

 

The film ends soon after, with Kevin still the age of a preteen boy.

 

We never learn any more about the nature of the fight God mentions, or why Kevin is the one who needs to fight, and what God might mean when he says that Kevin needs to stay back on Earth and carry on the fight.

 

When things feel extra bad and weird and hopeless and miserable, I think back to this line from one of my favorite films, and I imagine I’m Kevin.

 

No matter what happens, I’ve got to stay here and carry on the fight until I can’t fight any longer, or until an impeccably dressed Ralph Richardson and six ragged-looking little thieves show up to spirit me away.

 

I’d prefer the latter way to go, for what it’s worth.

 

Subscribe to One Thing You Can Do by clicking the button on the upper right of the page. And tell your friends about the blog!

 

Community Activism · Read, Educate Yourself, Prepare · Social Media · Stand Up for Civilization · Stand Up for Norms · Use Your Power, Recruit Friends · Vote with your Dollars

Donate to Help Puerto Rico, Still Reeling from Hurricane Maria, and Google Will Match It, Up to $2 Million

Donate to Google’s effort to aid charities that help Puerto Rico, which is still recovering from Hurricane Maria, and the company will match it up to $2 million.

 

When Hurricane Maria hit in September 2017, it utterly devastated the island of Puerto Rico. It destroyed a huge number of homes, it took out the power grid, and it was deadly–killing many more than the official government tally reflects.

 

The 2018 hurricane season started on June 1, and Puerto Rico is still nowhere near whole.

 

On June 8, Hamilton creator Lin-Manuel Miranda, who has Puerto Rican ancestry and  tirelessly advocated for the island even before Hurricane Maria, tweeted about a fresh effort to help:

 

Okay, here’s the deal: You give whatever you can spare. ‘s gonna match ALL YOUR donations up to $2 Million. It ALL goes to recovery relief for small businesses in Puerto Rico, via & Presente? Presente.

 

The link led to a Google webpage with the title, Together, We Can Help Puerto Rico Recover, and a donate button at the top right:

https://www.google.org/crisis/puertorico-relief/

 

The two main beneficiaries are Mercy Corps, which has worked with José Andrés’s World Central Kitchen to feed island residents, and the Hispanic Federation, which through its UNIDOS program has distributed funds to as many as 70 island non-profits. Both organizations have done much more to help Puerto Rico than what’s described here; scroll down for individual information on each.

 

There’s no limit on the number of donations you can make, but Google will stop matching after the $2 million mark is reached. If you scroll down on the main page, you’ll see a FAQ that should cover most questions you’re likely to have.

 

Here, again, is the main webpage for the Google effort for Puerto Rico:

https://www.google.org/crisis/puertorico-relief/

 

 

Subscribe to One Thing You Can Do by clicking the button on the upper right of the page. And tell your friends about the blog!

 

 

Here’s the main website for Mercy Corps:

https://www.mercycorps.org

 

 

Here’s Mercy Corps’s page on its efforts in Puerto Rico:

https://www.mercycorps.org/gallery/puerto-rico/rebuilding-puerto-rico-google

 

 

Here’s its story about working with José Andrés’s World Central Kitchen:

https://www.mercycorps.org/articles/united-states/sharing-warm-meals-across-puerto-rico

 

 

Like Mercy Corps on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/mercycorps

 

 

Follow it on Twitter:

@mercycorps

 

 

See the Hispanic Federation’s page on the UNIDOS program for Puerto Rico:

https://www.hispanicfederationunidos.org

 

 

Like the Hispanic Federation on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/hispanicfederation

 

 

Follow it on Twitter:

@HispanicFed

 

 

Follow Lin-Manuel Miranda on Twitter:

@Lin_Manuel

 

 

Read stories about Puerto Rico, nine months out from Hurricane Maria:

https://www.cnn.com/2018/06/01/us/puerto-rico-hurricane-readiness/index.html

 

 

Read the original New England Journal of Medicine story that estimates that 70 times more Puerto Ricans died in and from Hurricane Maria than the official government estimate of 64:

https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMsa1803972

 

 

Also read a June 1, 2018 Washington Post story that clarifies and provides nuance about the estimated death toll:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/fact-checker/wp/2018/06/02/did-4645-people-die-in-hurricane-maria-nope/?utm_term=.b4082fb0537d

 

 

Action Alerts · Call Your Members of Congress · Russian Scandal, Emoluments Clause · Stand Up for Civilization · Stand Up for Norms

Call Your MoCs and Demand They Enforce Sanctions Against Russia, Dammit, June 14, 2018 Edition

Call your MoCs to demand enforcement of sanctions against Russia.

 

Sarah Jane here. While I was sick with the flu back in January 2018, I wrote a few posts asking folks to call their MoCs and demand that they pressure President Trump to impose the sanctions on Russia for meddling with the 2016 election, which Congress passed with a veto-proof margin.

 

Trump’s shrugging off of the deadline and refusal to impose the sanctions has gotten some attention, but not enough, because ridiculous scandals continue to happen.

 

It should not get lost, and I am determined that it won’t.

 

Trump should not be allowed to ignore the will of 530 members of Congress. In my opinion it’s one of the worst, scariest signs of sliding into authoritarianism. We need to push back, and keep pushing back. And given that almost everyone in Congress feels the same way, we have leverage here.

 

We did see a small amount of progress on March 15, 2018, when the Trump administration accused Russia of hacking vital American infrastructure and imposed sanctions on 19 individuals, including the 13 that Special Counsel Robert Mueller indicted in February 2018. While the move is welcome, it’s not what we’re asking for. The administration still needs to obey Congress and impose the damn sanctions on Russia already.

 

We also saw progress on March 23, when Trump signed an omnibus spending bill that included measures that push back against Russia in various ways. It was also good news when the administration announced it would expel 60 Russian officials from America and close the Seattle consulate over the nerve agent attack on Sergei Skripal and his daughter in Britain.

 

And as of April 4, we’ve seen reports that the administration might sanction Russian oligarchs. See the stories:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/trump-administration-to-impose-fresh-sanctions-against-russia/2018/04/04/bc09e0b8-3851-11e8-b57c-9445cc4dfa5e_story.html?utm_term=.943e72ddd109

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-russia-sanctions/u-s-plans-to-sanction-russian-oligarchs-this-week-sources-idUSKCN1HB34U

 

But! The sanctions that Congress called for have still not been imposed.

 

And! We saw a serious setback on April 16, 2018, when the Trump administration walked back a new round of sanctions against Russia, throwing the U.S. Ambassador to the U.N., Nikki Haley, under the bus in the process. Larry Kudlow, director of the National Economic Counsel, evidently claimed she “might have gotten confused”. Read a New York Times story on the walk-back:

 

Haley, for her part, is Not Having It as of April 17, 2018, when she told CNN, “With all due respect, I don’t get confused.” Kudlow later apologized for his remarks. Read a Vox story on Haley’s pushback:

https://www.vox.com/2018/4/17/17249652/nikki-haley-russia-sanctions-larry-kudlow-response

 

We at OTYCD will continue to devote at least one post per week to the Russian sanctions issue until the Trump administration does what Congress told it to do.

 

This is the entry for June 14, 2018.

 

Below is more material from other past posts, plus a Celeste Pewter calling script. Please stay on this, and please spread the word. Thanks!

 

 

On Monday, January 29, 2018, the Trump administration was due to enforce sanctions imposed on Russia for meddling in our elections, as required by a 2017 law.

 

The administration brushed off the requirement by claiming the threat of the sanctions was deterrent enough.

 

After I wrote a combo Nunes memo-Russia sanctions enforcement post yesterday, Senator Claire McCaskill got to the heart of the problem in a tweet she sent late on January 29, 2018:

 

Congress voted 517-5 to impose sanctions on Russia. The President decides to ignore that law. Folks that is a constitutional crisis. There should be outrage in every corner of this country.

 

To my horror, the implications of Trump’s act are getting ignored, or crowded out by other horrible things.

 

Please, call your members of Congress and demand that they call Trump out for this. He cannot just brush off a law passed with a veto-proof majority. McCaskill is right–it’s a constitutional crisis. Please call.

 

Here’s your @Celeste_Pewter calling script for that topic:

 

 

Since Celeste prepared that calling script, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein announced the indictments of 13 Russians for interfering in the 2016 Russian election.

 

Read the Washington Post‘s story about the indictments, which came down on February 16, 2018:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/russian-troll-farm-13-suspects-indicted-for-interference-in-us-election/2018/02/16/2504de5e-1342-11e8-9570-29c9830535e5_story.html?utm_term=.be1dd2d76f9d

 

The indictments also make Trump’s refusal to impose the sanctions that Congress voted overwhelmingly to impose that much more flagrant and disgusting. It also makes it that much more important that we at OTYCD stay on this topic and spotlight it until Trump finally does what he should have done back in late January 2018.

 

Here I will reproduce more useful info from past OTYCD post that quote Celeste Pewter and Alexandra Erin.

 

Celeste Pewter (@Celeste_Pewter) helped me keep sane with a series of tweets on January 31, which I’ll reproduce:

 

Ok. I keep seeing certain threads about Russian sanctions/authoritarianism being RTed into my TL, so I think it’s important to have some facts on what Congress can and cannot do to address the WH’s decision. Start with this:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2018/01/30/even-if-trump-is-blatantly-ignoring-the-russia-sanctions-law-theres-not-a-lot-congress-can-do-about-it/?utm_term=.3b1222b2389a

 

Then follow it up with this:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2018/01/30/the-trump-administrations-weird-explanation-for-withholding-russia-sanctions/?utm_term=.1821cef97d99

 

I think it’s easy (and understandable) to say: “Rule of law is deaaaaad!” but the question now becomes: What are YOU going to do about it? Senator tweeted this: [She quotes the tweet I reproduce above]

 

Yes, be outraged. But more importantly, channel your outrage. The WaPo article I listed lists four options for Congress to respond to this; these are the three most likely. Your elected work for you. Demand they make any three (or even all three) happen. [She includes a screenshot of the three things, from the first Washington Post piece above.]

 

Don’t just sit around waiting for government to collapse; if you’re truly as upset as all of your RTs seem to indicate – I’m getting a bit [thinking face with arched eyebrow emoji] with the fatalism – then make sure you call and make your electeds hear your voice. Yes, this includes GOP electeds.

 

If you’ve followed me long enough, you’ll know I used to be a constituent affairs director for an elected. Trust me when I say: staff will let their boss(es) hear it, if their phone lines are ringing off the hook. We want it to stop so we can do other work.

 

We want our bosses to give us solutions to make it stop. So make it happen w/ these Russian sanction calls. Make the constituent team know you don’t accept this, and you will keep calling, until they are so tired of you, they will demand the office do something.

 

I’ve said this before, and I’ll say it again: we are many, and they are few. Do you really want these sanctions dictated by a few wankers in the administration? No. This time, you even have a bipartisan majority of the House and the Senate on your side. You have the power.

 

Here also are Alexandra Erin (@alexandraerin)’s January 31, 2018 tweets on the topic:

 

There are a pair of recent moves, from the State Department and the Treasury Department, which suggest that in year two of Trump’s reign, the regime is being a lot less circumspect about being in Putin’s pocket, with less ego-clashing feud and less smoke-and-mirrors resistance.

 

Now, you might recall that back in 2017, Congress passed laws calling for tough new sanctions to punish Russia for its election interference. There was a lot of speculation about whether Trump would sign this act, but he finally did, grudgingly and complaining the whole time.

 

In the United States system of government, the theory is that Congress passes the law, and the executive branch *executes* them, hence the term. Trump as chief executive is the chief one responsible for carrying out laws passed by Congress.

So guess where this is going.

 

Monday, January 29th, was the deadline for the executive branch to impose the sanctions, as prescribed in the bill that Donald Trump personally signed into canon as the law of the land.

It came and it went.

 

The law called for the Treasury Department to help guide the sanctions by producing an investigative report of oligarchs and businesses linked to Putin.

 

Serious, lifetime-career experts at the Treasury Department prepared that report, which was then thrown out and replaced with a copy of the Russian Forbes 100 list plus a few public Putin associates and a disclaimer that it’s not a list of people who should face sanctions.

 

And Rex Tillerson, secretary of state and obvious Yosemite Sam pseudonym, told Congress that they haven’t imposed actual sanctions because the threat of sanctions is proving an effective deterrent. Slap on the wrist, everybody learned a valuable lesson. No actual penalty.

 

The actual implementation strategy here is to let everyone else know that doing “significant transactions” with certain Russia-linked entities may result in penalties for the other party. But it’s entirely discretionary. No actual rules per se.

Team America: World Secret Police.

 

This gives the Trump regime a valuable tool for looking tough (Trump’s favorite way to look), a free hand for Putin, and a way to arbitrarily impose sanctions on countries or other entities that Trump or Putin want to weaken.

 

With nothing actually in writing about what transactions get penalized, we could easily see a situation where a group that does significant business with the Ukraine and also had an incidental transaction in Russia gets hit with sanctions for violating the unwritten rules.

 

Or anybody backing dissidents and opposition politicians in Russia. The sub-basement floor is the limit with these guys.

 

I don’t think we are quite at “Treasury and State Department overtly help Putin crush his enemies” territory yet. Nope. But one year and change in to Trump’s rule, and we are at “Treasury and State Department overtly shield Putin and his cronies from consequences” territory.

 

And while it’s not a surprising shift, it is a marked shift from where they were last year, and the main thing that has changed is what year it is. Time makes Trump normal. The passage of the year changed his dislike of the sanctions from an outrage to the way things are.

 

And with Trump’s feet-dragging opposition to the sanctions accepted as the new normal, his executive branch failing to execute them becomes a natural progression of time rather than a startling departure from all norms of governance and the rule of law.

 

So you’ve really got to ask yourself, what would the start of a year 3 of Trump look like? How far would he be able to go after his next calendar reset? How far can he push things between now and then?

 

…this prompted Cathy R to tweet,

So now what? No further actions!? What can be done?

 

Alexandra Erin answered:

 

Talk about it. Spread awareness of it. Make sure everybody you know knows that it’s happening. Post it on your Facebook. Put it in an email forward to your uncle. The right does these things, and it shapes the way people think about politics, and vote.

 

Talk is not the only action required, but talk is an action that is required. There is a national discourse. We have to be shaping it.

 

Believe it or not, talking about the regime’s corruption is doing something. Talking about the resurgence of overt Nazism and white nationalism is doing something. Being willing to talk about these things, to label them as they are rather than accepting them as normal, helps.

 

We could be calling Congress to light a fire under them to demand the executive branch actually execute these things, to write newer, more specific, and tougher sanction laws, but to be honest: the public engagement and awareness aren’t there yet to get the critical mass needed.

 

So step one is: talk about it. Talk to people about it. Get people talking about it. The executive branch is flouting the rule of law, Trump is ignoring a law he himself signed into existence.

 

The right has a hundred talking points about why Russian interference doesn’t exist or doesn’t matter or helped Clinton or whatever. But none of that addresses the fact that Trump signed this law. He made it the law of the land. And he’s ignoring it.

Candidates · Community Activism · Elections · Ethics · Health Care

Learn Which 30 State Attorneys General Are On the Ballot In 2018 — UPDATED June 9 So You Can Vote Out the Bums Trying to Hurt People Who Have Pre-Existing Conditions

Learn which 30 state attorneys general are on the ballot in 2018, so you can vote out the state AGs who are attacking the 130 million Americans who have pre-existing conditions, and so you can support the state AGs who are defending those vulnerable people. 

 

The attorney general (AG) is the state’s lead legal officer. State AGs have been crucial to curtailing and/or stopping the agenda of Trump and his cabinet. Several banded together to sue when Trump tried to implement his various Muslim travel bans, and they banded together to sue when Department of Education head Betsy DeVos tried to roll back protections for student borrowers who were cheated by for-profit schools.

 

The state AG is often, but not always, an elected position. In some states, the governor appoints the AG instead.

 

AGs can form part of a triplex–a situation in which the governor, the attorney general, and the secretary of state all belong to the same party. This is distinct from a trifecta, in which the governor and both chambers of the state legislature belong to the same party. In either case, when the three posts yield a triplex, it can be easier for party officials to impose their agenda. As of January 1, 2018, there are 23 Republican triplexes and 11 Democratic triplexes.

 

Below is a list of state AG posts that are open in 2018, with notes on whether the incumbents will run or not.

 

 

Update, June 9, 2018: By now you have heard about the insane response from the Department of Justice (DOJ) to a goofy lawsuit from several state attorneys general that would kill the ACA and end up removing protections that ensure that people with pre-existing conditions can get health insurance.

 

A total of 20 state AGs are suing to kill the Affordable Care Act (ACA), also known as Obamacare, and the vital protections it enshrines. As of now, 16 state AGs and the AG for the District of Columbia have countersued to defend the ACA.

 

We have updated our April 2018 post on which states are holding AG elections in 2018, and we are identifying whether the incumbents are defending the ACA or trying to destroy it. We’re also identifying states that have not entered either lawsuit, and naming Democratic incumbents and challengers who you can nudge to join the 17 who are fighting for the ACA.

 

There’s been a lot of attention to the 2018 Congressional races, and there should be. But please don’t neglect state-level races such as these. Attorneys general have been a valuable force for defending against the horrors of the Trump administration. Please reward and support those who are fighting back, and vote out those who are not.

 

As with the Congressional races, all of the state attorney general elections take place on Tuesday, November 6, 2018.

 

 

Alabama: Republican incumbent Steve Marshall will run for his first full term. He was appointed in 2017 after Republican Luther Strange was appointed to fill the Alabama Senate seat vacated by Jeff Sessions. Alabama has a Republican triplex.

At least one Democrat, Chris Christie (yes, that’s his name, and yes, he’s a different guy than the outgoing New Jersey governor), will appear in the June 5 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Alabama is one of the 20 states suing to destroy the ACA.

Democrat Joseph Siegelman defeated Chris Christie in the June 5 primary. Siegelman is the son of a former Alabama governor and AG who was charged and ultimately served time for corruption and obstruction of justice charges.

He has never run for public office before. He does not appear to have made a statement about the anti-ACA lawsuit, but he has spoken about fighting the opioid epidemic, and he has generally expressed a commitment to defending vulnerable people.

See Democrat Joseph Siegelman’s website and donate to his campaign: https://www.siegelman2018.com

Follow him on Twitter: @JoeSiegelman

 

 

 

Arizona: As of January 1, 2018, Republican incumbent Mark Brnovich had not decided if he would run for a second term. Arizona has a Republican triplex.

At least one Democrat, January Contreras, will run in the August 28 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Arizona is one of the 20 states suing to destroy the ACA.

Brnovich appears to be running again. Contreras is his Democratic opponent. She does not appear to have made a statement about the anti-ACA lawsuit, but we can tell from her website that she’d be joining the 17 if she was in charge.

See Democrat January Contreras’s website and donate to her campaign: https://www.januaryforaz.com

Follow her on Twitter: @JanuaryAZ

 

 

 

Arkansas: Republican incumbent Leslie Rutledge will run for a second term. Arkansas has a Republican triplex.

As of January 1, 2018, no Democrats had signed up for the May 22 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Arkansas is one of the 20 states suing to destroy the ACA.

Fortunately, since we wrote this post, a Democrat joined the race: Mike Lee. While he has not made a specific public comment about the anti-ACA suit joined by his opponent, it’s clear from his website that he’d oppose it.

 

See Democrat Mike Lee’s website and donate to his campaign: http://electmikelee.org

Follow him on Twitter: @ElectMikeLee

 

 

 

California: Democratic incumbent Xavier Becerra will run for his first full term. He was appointed in January 2017 after then-AG Kamala Harris won a California Senate seat in 2016. California has a Democratic triplex.

California uses a top-two primary system for its AG race, which sends the top two vote-getters in the June 5 primary to face each other in the general election. As of January 1, 2018, one other Democrat and two Republicans had committed to the primary.

 

Update, June 2018: California is one of the 17 states countersuing to defend the ACA. Becerra is leading the charge.

Becerra won his June 5 party primary and will face opposition in the fall.

See Xavier Becerra’s website:

https://xavierbecerra.com

Follow him on Twitter:

@XavierBecerra

 

 

 

Colorado: Republican incumbent Cynthia Coffman is leaving the AG post to run for governor.

At least five Democrats will run in the June 26 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Colorado has not joined either of the lawsuits. Ballotpedia shows that the Democratic AG primary field is down to two: Joseph Salazar and Phil Weiser.

Neither candidate appears to have made a public statement about joining the countersuit. Neither devotes an explicit heading to the ACA in the issues section of their campaign sites, but Weiser published a blog post in May 2018 about fighting for affordable, accessible health care.

See Phil Weiser’s website and donate to his campaign: https://www.philforcolorado.com

Follow Weiser on Twitter: @pweiser

See Joe Salazar’s website and donate to his campaign: https://salazarforcoag.com

 

 

 

Connecticut: Democratic incumbent George C. Jepsen has chosen not to run for a third term. Connecticut has a Democratic triplex.

At least one Democrat, former federal prosecutor Chris Mattei, has committed to run in the August 14 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Connecticut is one of the 17 states countersuing to defend the ACA. 

On June 8, Chris Mattei tweeted in favor of the countersuit:

The DOJ, which should be a refuge for the exploited & powerless, just argued in court that 52 million people w/ pre-existing conditions can be denied coverage contrary to the ACA. This is disgusting. This is not justice.

See Chris Mattei’s website and donate to his campaign: https://matteiforct.com

Follow him on Twitter: @ChrisMatteiCT

 

Mattei has since been joined in the August 14 Democratic primary by Paul R. Doyle and William Tong.

Weirdly, Doyle’s webpage isn’t loading at the moment; we’ll update this post accordingly when it is.

 

Tong has not given a statement about the countersuit but his campaign site is dead clear that he does not like what Trump is doing in general, and will resist his agenda.

See William Tong’s website and donate to his campaign: http://www.williamtong.com

Follow him on Twitter: @WilliamTongCT

 

 

 

Delaware: Democratic incumbent Matthew Denn has chosen not to run for a second term. Delaware has a Democratic triplex.

At least one Democrat, Tim Mullaney, will run in the September 11, 2018 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Delaware is one of the 17 states countersuing to defend the ACA. 

Mullaney has since been joined in the party primary by Kathy Jennings, Chris Johnson, and LaKresha Roberts.

Weirdly, Mullaney does not appear to have a campaign site right now, just a Facebook page:

https://www.facebook.com/Mullaney-2018-1716354568406764/

If we find a website or Twitter handle for him, we’ll update accordingly.

 

Jennings has not made a statement in favor of the countersuit, but it’s reasonable to infer from her website and Twitter feed that she supports it.

See Kathy Jennings’s website and donate to her campaign: https://www.kathyfordelaware.com/priorities

Follow her on Twitter: @KathyForAG

 

Like Jennings, Johnson has not made a specific statement about the countersuit, but it’s reasonable to infer from his website and Twitter feed that he supports it.

See Chris Johnson’s website and donate to his campaign:

https://www.chrisjohnsonforag.com

Follow him on Twitter:

@ChrisJohnsonDE

 

Roberts is in the same boat as her Democratic rivals: Hasn’t made a statement about the countersuit, but would clearly support it.

See LaKresha Roberts’s website and donate to her campaign:

http://www.lakreshafordelaware.com

Follow her on Twitter: @lakreshaforDE

 

 

 

Florida: Republican incumbent Pam Bondi is term-limited out. Florida has a Republican triplex.

At least one Democrat, Ryan Torrens, will appear in the August 28 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Florida is one of the 20 states suing to destroy the ACA.

Torrens has since been joined in the primary by Sean Shaw, and there’s still time for other Floridians to jump in to the state attorney general race; the filing deadline is June 22, 2018.

 

Torrens has not made a specific statement against the anti-ACA suit, but a look over his website leaves no doubt that he’s not in favor.

See Torres’s website and donate to his campaign: https://www.ryanforattorneygeneral.com

Follow him on Twitter: @RyanforFLAG

 

Ditto for Sean Shaw: No specific comment on the suit, but judging by his website and Twitter feed, we doubt he supports it.

See Shaw’s website and donate to his campaign: https://seanshaw.com

Follow him on Twitter: @SShawFL

 

 

 

Georgia: Republican incumbent Chris Carr will run for his first full term as AG. He was appointed in October 2016 after Republican Samuel S. Owens resigned to take the presidency of Kennesaw State University.

As of January 1, 2018, no Democrats had committed to the May 22 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Georgia is one of the 20 states suing to destroy the ACA.

A Democrat has since stepped up to challenge Carr: Charlie Bailey.

Bailey hasn’t made a public comment about the lawsuit, but he’s endorsed by the Democratic Attorneys General Association, which is promising, seeing as it’s Democratic AGs who are pressing the countersuit.

See Charlie Bailey’s website and donate to his campaign: https://charlieforgeorgia.com/home/

Follow him on Twitter: @charlie4georgia

 

 

 

Idaho: Republican incumbent Lawrence Wasden will run for a fourth term as AG. Idaho has a Republican triplex.

As of January 1, 2018, no Democrats had committed to the May 15 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Idaho has not joined either of the lawsuits.

A Democrat, Bruce Bistline, has since joined the AG race, but the Idaho situation seems weird. We found a 2014 (repeat, this is NOT A CURRENT ARTICLE) story online that stated that Bistline would not campaign actively. He appears to be doing the same this time around, too, but he hasn’t said as much to the local press.

Ballotpedia definitely lists Bistline as the Democratic AG candidate for 2018, but we can’t find anything that looks like a campaign website for him. The National Association of Attorneys General confirms that as of May 25, 2018, Bistline did not have one.

The filing deadline to run was back in March, so it’s too late for the Dems to choose someone else.

We get that Idaho is a pretty damn red state. But c’mon, Idaho friends, could you at least pick a Democratic AG candidate who will actually, you know, show up and put up a fight? We at OTYCD think that y’all can do better than Bistline.

 

 

 

Illinois: Democratic incumbent Lisa Madigan decided not to run for a fifth term as AG.

At least eight Democrats will run in the March 20 primary, including Renato Mariotti.

 

Update, June 2018: Illinois is one of the 17 states countersuing to defend the ACA. 

Kwame Raoul emerged victorious from the Democratic primary. (Sorry, Renato. We still love you and we still want people to follow your Twitter feed.)

 

On June 9, Raoul tweeted in favor of the countersuit:

As the son of a community physician and a cancer survior myself, I believe everyone should have access to health care, regardless of income or pre-existing conditions. If Donald Trump won’t enforce the law and protect people, as attorney general, I will.

And he released the same statement as a press release:

https://kwameraoul.com/news/raoul-responds-to-trump-effort-to-gut-the-aca/

 

See Raoul’s website and donate to his campaign: https://kwameraoul.com

Follow him on Twitter: @KwameRaoul

 

 

 

Iowa: Democratic incumbent Tom Miller will run for his tenth term in office. He held the post from 1978 to 1990, when he stepped away to run for governor. He lost, ran for AG in 1994, and has successfully held the office ever since.

As of January 1, 2018, no Democrats had committed to the June 5 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Iowa has not joined either of the lawsuits.

The filing deadline passed without any Democratic challengers leaping in.

In the past few days, Miller has tweeted from his official AG account (@AGIowa) in favor of defending the integrity of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, which Mick Mulvaney is trying to gut. He’s also retweeted fellow state AGs talking about pushing back against nasty stuff that Betsy DeVos is trying to pull. But Miller hasn’t said anything related to the ACA or health care.

Democrats in Iowa, how about you call Miller’s office and ask him to join the 17 who are countersuing to save the ACA?

We can’t find a campaign website for Miller, but here’s a link to his page on VoteSmart, which has an email address for his campaign:

https://votesmart.org/candidate/biography/1768/tom-miller#.WxvtGC2ZOCc

 

 

 

Kansas: As of January 1, 2018, Republican incumbent Derek Schmidt had not decided whether he would run for a third term. Kansas has a Republican triplex.

As of January 1, 2018, no Democrats had committed to the August 7 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Kansas is one of the 20 states suing to destroy the ACA.

Democrat Sarah Swain seems to have snuck in right at the June 1 filing deadline to run for state AG. Schmidt has since committed as well.

Swain’s candidacy is so new that she doesn’t appear to have a website or a social media presence yet. We will update this post accordingly once that changes.

Here’s a June 1, 2018 article on Swain’s entry into the race: http://www2.ljworld.com/news/2018/jun/01/lawrence-attorney-sarah-swain-files-kansas-attorne/

 

 

 

Maryland: As of January 1, 2018, Democratic incumbent Brian Frosh had not decided whether he would run for a second term.

As of January 1, 2018, no other Democrats had committed to the June 26 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Maryland has not joined either of the lawsuits.

Frosh has made up his mind, though. He’s running again.

He does not appear to have made a comment on either of the suits on either his campaign site or his Facebook page.

Marylanders, how about you call Frosh’s office and ask him to join the 17?

Frosh’s campaign site is here: https://www.brianfrosh.com

 

 

Massachusetts: Democratic incumbent Maura Healey, who is awesome, will run for a second term.

As of January 1, 2018, no other Democrats had committed to the September 4 primary. But that’s OK, because Maura Healey is awesome.

 

Update, June 2018: Massachusetts is one of the 17 states countersuing to defend the ACA, because Maura Healey is awesome (did we mention that? Because she is, indeed, awesome.).

Healey will face no challengers in the September 4 primary.

See Healey’s website and donate to her campaign: http://www.maurahealey.com

Follow her on Twitter: @maura_healey

 

 

Michigan: Republican incumbent Bill Schuette is term-limited out. Michigan has a Republican triplex.

Update, June 2018: Michigan has not joined either of the lawsuits.

 

Since this post originally went up, the Michigan Democratic Party convened and chose Dana Nessel as their AG candidate.

You might remember Nessel. She did that amazing November 2017 campaign ad pushing back against sexual harassment.

She hasn’t yet said anything about either lawsuit but hey, Michiganders? We at OTYCD bet she’ll come out in favor of joining the 17 if you call and ask her to do so.

See her website and donate to her campaign: https://www.dana2018.com

Follow her on Twitter: @dananessel

 

 

 

Minnesota: As of January 1, 2018, Democratic incumbent Lori Swanson had not yet decided if she would run for a fourth term. Minnesota has a Democratic triplex.

At least four other Democrats have announced they will run in the August 14 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Minnesota is one of the 17 states countersuing to defend the ACA “by and through its Department of Commerce.” 

Swanson has since announced she will run for governor of Minnesota.

Five Democrats have filed for the August 14 primary, most notably Keith Ellison, who is giving up his House of Representatives seat in the 5th District to aim for the open Michigan state AG post.

On June 8, Ellison tweeted this message with a link to a Politico story:

Trump’s Justice Department is calling on the courts to throw out protections for people with pre-existing conditions, but CA AG Xavier Becera fights back.

See Ellison’s website and donate to his campaign: https://keithellison.org

We’ll add his AG-specific Twitter account once he creates one.

 

We at OTYCD are having trouble with Tom Foley at the moment. Ballotpedia redirects to the wrong Tom Foley (a Republican in another state), and Minnesota’s Tom Foley is far from the only Tom Foley in politics. We can’t seem to find a campaign site for him, either.

Consider this an invitation to Minnesota AG candidate Tom Foley’s folks to get in touch with us here (see the About & Subscribe page) so we can update this section accordingly.

 

Debra Hilstrom has not made a specific statement about the countersuit but we have no reason to believe she wouldn’t support it.

See Hilstrom’s website and donate to her campaign:  https://debrahilstrommn.com

Follow her on Twitter: @debrahilstrom

 

Matt Pelikan has not made a specific statement about the countersuit, but the header of his Twitter page is him standing with Senator Elizabeth Warren, so, no worries there, we think.

See Pelikan’s website and donate to his campaign: http://mattpelikan.com

Follow him on Twitter: @mattpelikan

 

Mike Rothman also has not made a specific statement in favor of the countersuit, but judging by his website, he’s probably in favor.

See Rothman’s website and donate to his campaign:

http://mikerothmanformn.com

Follow him on Twitter (warning–he doesn’t tweet much):

@MikeRothman4MN

 

 

 

Nebraska: Republican incumbent Doug Petersen will run for a second term. Nebraska has a Republican triplex.

At least one Democrat, Evangelos Argyrakis, will run in the May 15 primary.

Update, June 2018: Nebraska is one of the 20 states suing to destroy the ACA.

Unfortunately Democrats might be up the creek in this race. Argyrakis is the only Democratic candidate, but local papers reported in April that he assaulted his 82-year-old father after accusing him of taking money from his mother. So, erm, awkward.

We at OTYCD can’t seem to find a campaign website for him either, which is probably for the best. If we learn about whether a write-in campaign is allowed, we will update accordingly.

 

 

 

Nevada: Republican incumbent Adam Laxalt is running for Nevada governor instead of a second term as AG. Nevada has a Republican triplex.

At least one Democrat, state Senator Aaron Ford, will appear in the June 12 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Nevada has not joined either of the lawsuits.

Since this post came out, Stuart MacKie entered the Democratic primary.

 

On June 9, Aaron Ford tweeted:

Nevadans with preexisting conditions like asthma or diabetes deserve health care. As I will stand up for the thousands of Nevadans who could lose health care access because of this dangerous lawsuit.

See Ford’s website and donate to his campaign:

https://www.fordfornevada.com

Follow him on Twitter: @AaronDFordNV

 

Stuart MacKie has proven more elusive. We will add his campaign website and Twitter account if and when we locate them.

 

 

 

New Mexico: Democratic incumbent Hector Balderas will run for a second term.

No other Democrats have announced they will run in the June 5 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: New Mexico has not joined either of the lawsuits.

Hey, New Mexicans, how about you call or email Balderas and ask him to join the 17?

See his website and donate to his campaign: http://www.hectorbalderas.com

 

 

 

New York: Democratic incumbent Eric Schneiderman will run for a third term. New York has a Democratic triplex.

No other Democrats have announced they will run in the September 11 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: New York is one of the 17 states countersuing to defend the ACA. 

Ahem. Since we wrote this, Eric Scheiderman was outed as a horrific abuser. He resigned within hours of the news breaking. New York Solicitor General Barbara Underwood is filling in, but is not running for the AG post.

Four Democrats have entered the September 13 primary: Zephyr Teachout, Sean Patrick Maloney, Leecia Eve, and Letitia James. As of June, all are actively gathering signatures so they can appear on the ballot.

 

Zephyr Teachout does not appear to have said anything about the countersuit but we doubt she’d be against it.

See her website and donate to her campaign: https://zephyrforny.com

Follow her on Twitter: @ZephyrTeachout

 

Sean Patrick Maloney announced on June 6, 2018 that he’d run for AG, but he might not abandon his re-election campaign for his House of Representatives seat in New York’s 18th Congressional District while he does it (FWIW, we at OTYCD think this behavior is hinky. Take the risk, dammit).

He hasn’t made a specific statement about the countersuit but it’s clear he’s for it.

The only campaign site Maloney has up right now is his CONGRESSIONAL site: https://maloneyfornewyork.com

Follow him on Twitter: @MaloneyforNY

 

 

Leecia Eve has not made a public statement but we see no reason to believe she doesn’t back the countersuit.

See her website and donate to her campaign: https://leeciaeve.com

 

 

Letitia James has not made a specific public statement and doesn’t yet have a campaign site that’s specific to the AG race, but from what we’ve seen, we believe she’d support the countersuit.

She’s talking about her AG candidacy on her personal Twitter: @TishJames

 

 

 

North Dakota: As of January 1, 2018, Republican incumbent Wayne Stenehjem had not decided if he would run for a sixth term. He is the longest-serving AG in the state’s history. North Dakota has a Republican triplex.

No Democrats have announced they will run in the June 12 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: North Dakota is one of the 20 states suing to destroy the ACA.

David Clark Thompson has since become the only Democrat in the state AG race. He needs to step up his Twitter game (two tweets, both in May, that’s all), and he doesn’t appear to have said anything about the anti-ACA suit, but we don’t see anything on his site that contradicts the notion that he’d oppose the suit.

See his website and donate to his campaign: http://www.davidthompsonforndag.com

Follow his Twitter feed: @thompsonndag

 

 

 

Ohio: Republican incumbent Mike DeWine will run for governor instead of a third term as AG. Ohio has a Republican triplex.

At least one Democrat, Steven Dettelbach, will run in the May 8 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Ohio has not joined either of the lawsuits.

Dettelbach has not said anything about either lawsuit. Ohio Democrats should ask him to support the 17.

See Dettelbach’s site and donate to his campaign: https://steveforohio.com

Follow his Twitter feed: @SteveDettelbach

 

 

 

Oklahoma: Republican incumbent Mike Hunter will run for his first full term after being appointed in 2017 to take the place of Scott Pruitt, who now heads the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Oklahoma has a Republican triplex.

No Democrats have announced they will run in the June 26 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Oklahoma has not joined either of the lawsuits, which is kind of surprising when you think about it.

Since writing the original post, Democrat Mark Myles has entered the race.

He must have joined pretty recently because his campaign website is a placeholder. See it here: https://www.electmarkmyles.com

 

 

Rhode Island: Democratic incumbent Peter Kilmartin is term-limited out. Rhode Island has a Democratic triplex.

At least one Democrat, Peter Neronha, will run in the September 12 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Rhode Island is one of the 17 states countersuing to defend the ACA. 

Nehrona has not said anything specific about the countersuit but we have no reason to believe he doesn’t support it.

See his website and donate to his campaign: https://peterneronha.com

Follow him on Twitter: @PeterNehrona

 

 

 

South Carolina: Republican incumbent Alan Wilson will run for a third term. South Carolina has a Republican triplex.

No Democrats have announced they will run in the June 12 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: South Carolina is one of the 20 states suing to destroy the ACA.

Since writing the original post, Democrat Constance Anastopoulo entered the race. She will run unopposed in the primary.

As with many Democratic AG candidates, Anastopoulo has not said anything specific about her state joining the anti-ACA suit, but nothing on her campaign site indicates she’d support it.

See her site and donate to her campaign: https://www.anastopouloforag.com

 

 

South Dakota: Republican incumbent Marty J. Jackley will run for governor instead of a third term as AG. South Dakota has a Republican triplex.

No Democrats have announced they will run in the June 5 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: South Dakota is one of the 20 states suing to destroy the ACA.

South Dakota Democrats will choose between two AG candidates at their June 15-16 convention: Tatewin Means and Randy Seiler.

Right now, both are using Facebook instead of splashing out on campaign sites. Neither has directly addressed the lawsuit, but Seiler did write a health care-themed post of note on June 8:

SD recently expanded coverage of substance abuse to people who qualify for Medicaid. Falls short though in expanding eligibility that could target services to get people the help they need – with the Federal government paying 90% of cost. Note that Republican AG candidate Russell voted no on the expanded coverage for treatment.

See Seiler’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/randyseilerforattorneygeneral

See Means’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/MeansforAG/

 

 

Texas: Republican incumbent Ken Paxton will run for a second term. Texas has a Republican triplex.

At least one Democrat, Justin Nelson, will run in the March 6 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Texas is one of the 20 states suing to destroy the ACA, and is co-leading the effort with Wisconsin’s AG.

Nelson ran alone in the primary.

On June 9, he tweeted:

Here’s the pattern now: Ken Paxton files a lawsuit to make a partisan point and to distract from his own indictment. Trump then uses Paxton’s suit as an excuse. Lather, rinse, repeat. That’s wrong. I believe it’s Texas first, not Tea Party first.

See Nelson’s site and donate to his campaign: https://www.nelsonfortexas.com

Follow him on Twitter: @NelsonforTexas

 

 

 

Vermont: As of January 1, 2018, Democratic incumbent T.J. Donovan has not decided if he’ll run for a second term.

No Democrats have announced they will run in the August 14 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Vermont is one of the 17 states countersuing to defend the ACA. 

Donovan did commit and defeated a Democratic primary challenger to run again.

See his site here and donate to his campaign: http://donovanforvermont.com

Follow him on Twitter: @TJforVermont

 

 

 

Wisconsin: Republican incumbent Brad Schimel will run for a second term.

At least one Democrat, Josh Kaul, will run in the August 14 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Wisconsin is one of the 20 states suing to destroy the ACA, and is co-leading the effort with Texas’s AG.

The filing deadline passed on June 1, meaning Kaul will run unopposed in the primary. He’s the son of a former AG, Peg Lautenschlager.

On June 8, Kaul tweeted:

‘s effort to allow health-insurance companies to deny coverage to Wisconsinites with pre-existing conditions is wrong. We should be working to expand access to affordable care.

See Kaul’s website and donate to his campaign: https://www.joshkaul.org

Follow him on Twitter: @JoshKaulWI

 

 

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See the document that lists the 20 states that are suing to kill the ACA:

https://www.texasattorneygeneral.gov/files/epress/Texas_Wisconsin_et_al_v._U.S._et_al_-_ACA_Complaint_(02-26-18).pdf?cachebuster:23

 

 

Xavier Becerra put out a press release on June 7 that lists all 17 states and entities that are countersuing to defend the ACA:

https://oag.ca.gov/news/press-releases/texas-v-hhs-attorney-general-becerra-leads-coalition-16-attorneys-general

 

 

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Action Alerts · Call Your Members of Congress · Health Care

Call Your MoCs and Make It Damn Clear You Support the ACA and the 16 State AGs (Plus the District of Columbia) Who Are Countersuing to Defend It

Call your Members of Congress and make it damn clear to all three that you support the Affordable Care Act (ACA), and you support the 16 state attorneys general (plus the District of Columbia) who are countersuing to defend it. 

 

Having failed to get Congress to kill the ACA, the Trump administration is trying a ridiculous, bullshit move. On June 7, the Department of Justice stated it would not defend the law against a suit brought by 20 state attorneys general.

 

To quote from a June 7, 2018 story in the Washington Post:

In a brief filed in a Texas federal court and an accompanying letter to the House and Senate leaders of both parties, the Justice Department agrees in large part with the 20 Republican-led states that brought the suit. They contend that the ACA provision requiring most Americans to carry health insurance soon will no longer be constitutional and that, as a result, consumer insurance protections under the law will not be valid, either.

 

Full story is here:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/trump-administration-wont-defend-aca-in-cases-brought-by-gop-states/2018/06/07/92f56e86-6a9c-11e8-9e38-24e693b38637_story.html?utm_term=.f3b0215d68fe

 

The same night, Topher Spiro, who has done consistently great work with defending the ACA, CHIP, and GOP assaults on health care, tweeted the following:

 

Trump’s Justice Department just refused to defend the ACA and asked a court to invalidate protections for people with pre-existing conditions. Luckily, Democratic states have intervened and will defend the law.

 

This is an open and shut case. It is frivolous, a truly wacko claim. Texas argues that because Congress repealed the individual mandate, the pre-existing condition protections must also go. Congress obviously disagreed.

 

The judge is right-wing and unpredictable. So he could very well strike down the protections. But the circuit court would reverse.

This development is important because 1) Trump is thoroughly politicizing the DOJ and refusing to defend the law of the land and 2) this creates some degree of uncertainty that contributes to GOP sabotage.

Three respected career DOJ attorneys withdrew from the case in protest just before this brief was filed. That tells you how politicized this is. This is a political attack on the ACA and people with pre-existing conditions.

I don’t believe people should worry too much about this court case. Nothing we can do about it anyway. I believe people should worry about repeal if they keep the House. THAT we can do something about.

One thing is clear: Trump made a BIG mistake attacking pre-existing condition protections tonight. He may have awakened a sleeping giant.

Conservative constitutional law scholar (who believed the individual mandate was unconstitutional!) says this latest case is “cynical-squared” and “absurd” =>

…and he cited these two Adler tweets, one a main tweet, one a reply:

The problem with the Trump Administration’s response to the latest ACA suit is not its refusal to defend the mandate so much as its adoption of problematic (and quite cynical) approach to severability.

Then the arguments here are cynical-squared. No matter how one conceives of severability doctrine, the underlying premise here is absurd.

…Back to Topher Spiro. He cited the fact that 16 other state attorneys general, plus the District of Columbia, had filed a countersuit. And while he did state he felt people shouldn’t worry about the court case, he did recommend that folks call their MoCs:

The average number of people with pre-existing conditions is about 300,000 per congressional district. Find your district. Get the number. Hold Republicans accountable.

We agree with him. Even though he’s right, and legal scholars from across the spectrum affirm that the state AGs’ anti-ACA lawsuit is wack (scroll down for a link), we at OTYCD think it’s worth it to call your MoCs and make it completely and utterly clear that You Are Not On Board With This Shit.

Suggested script: “Hello (Senator/House Rep Lastname,) I am (Firstname Lastname of town, zip code). I realize this is a Department of Justice matter at the moment but I wanted to call and make it absolutely clear that I support the Affordable Care Act and I oppose any attempt to undercut it or its key provisions. The lawsuit that was brought by the 20 state attorneys general, and which the DOJ has essentially backed by refusing to enforce the law, is crap. Most legal scholars agree that it’s crap. But if the DOJ does not wise up and do the right thing, there is a chance that the suit will advance, and the protections the ACA grants to people with pre-existing conditions will be threatened.

It’s estimated that at least 52 million non-elderly Americans have pre-existing conditions. If you don’t have one, you love someone who does. We cannot go back to the bad old days when health insurers would only cover you without bankrupting you if you’d never been sick in your life, at all, ever. That would be cruel and insane. And I am putting you on notice: If any representative of mine votes to cripple or kill the ACA, I will work to throw that person out of office. Thank you for listening.”

Follow Topher Spiro on Twitter:

@TopherSpiro

Read a June 8, 2018 Vox piece in which a range of legal scholars smack down the anti-ACA lawsuit that the DOJ is rolling over for:

https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2018/6/8/17441512/obamacare-lawsuit-texas-trump

Read a June 8, 2018 piece from the Washington Post that claims that 52 million Americans younger than 65 have pre-existing conditions and would be hurt if the ACA is destroyed:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2018/06/08/aca-lawsuit-could-jeopardize-52-million-americans-access-to-health-care/?noredirect=on&utm_term=.70f79d9a202b

Read yet another June 8, 2018 piece on California AG Xavier Becerra leading a countersuit to defend the ACA:

California’s Attorney General Vows National Fight To Defend The ACA

Call Your Members of Congress · Russian Scandal, Emoluments Clause · Stand Up for Civilization · Stand Up for Norms

Call Your MoCs to Demand They Step Up and Do Something About Trump’s Dumpster-fire of a Performance at the 2018 G7 Summit

Call your members of Congress and ask them to do something–not just make a statement–to appropriately react to Trump’s Dumpster-fire of a performance at the 2018 G7 summit.

 

We were all bracing ourselves for the 2018 G7. We knew Trump wasn’t going to cover himself in glory. But it was worse than we expected.

 

He came late and left early.

 

He had the unmitigated, uneducated gall to ask the others to re-admit Russia to the group. The G-force booted Russia for cause four years ago, after it messed with Ukraine and invaded Crimea. Unsurprisingly, and correctly, the other Gs told Trump ‘no’. Because they are diplomats, they did not say, ‘No, fuck you, no, and also, fuck you.’

 

Bizarrely, the noted fan of tariffs suggested getting rid of all tariffs, while insisting that the tariffs he had just imposed were necessary.

 

He endorsed the G-7 joint statement and then un-endorsed it later on Twitter.

 

He shat upon our allies repeatedly, for no good reason.

 

When he pulls stone cold nonsense like the G7 beclownment, Trump swings a wrecking ball into America’s international reputation. The longer he’s in the Oval Office, the more damage he will do, and the harder it will be to repair.

 

Our friend Celeste Pewter (who you should be following on Twitter at @Celeste_Pewter) suggested we should call or leave voicemails for our MoCs, asking them to do something. Not just speak out, but do something. On June 9, 2018, after news broke of Trump’s takeback on the joint G7 statement, she tweeted:

 

A good thing to do at the moment? Leave a VM [voicemail] with your electeds and ask how they can stand by and watch Trump torpedo our most critical international relationships.

 

This is one of those times when a mere statement or tweet from an elected isn’t enough. Ask them what they plan to do, and tell them you expect actual action steps.

 

Also: I know this comes off as typical behavior for Trump, but it’s different because he’s reneging on an agreement w/ multiple international countries, after saying the US would sign on.

 

Today’s move gives the international community zero reason to trust the United States for *anything* in the future. Because they’ll always, always be risking Trump backing out, and insulting them to boot.

 

Trump voters: I hope you understand that isolationism does nothing to help our country. It sets our economy back. It sets advances in critical fields back. It will absolutely decrease our global standing, in many ways that are potentially irreversible. Everyone else: [she tweeted three phone emojis, indicating we should CALL]

 

She also retweeted @mikechenwriter, who said:

Do this especially if you live in a red state. There is no practical reason to sabotage our relations with out allies. This is purely driven by ego. GOP electeds need to hear it.

 

…and responded to this subsequent tweet from @mikechenwriter:

Seriously, if you have any conservative friends who are willing to listen, ask them if President Romney or McCain would be doing this. Then urge them to call their electeds.

@Celeste_Pewter responded:

This is an important point. I dislike conservative politicians. But Romney, McCain, Kasich all know how to behave like adults with international allies, even if we disapprove of what they’re saying/doing. What we have ATM [at the moment], is playground-style bullying at the highest level.

She went on to tweet:

 

Sample script: “Dear [Senator/House Rep Lastname,] I am [Firstname Lastname, from
town, zip code.] I am calling because I am disgusted by the way President Trump acted at
the G7 Summit. I was embarrassed, and you should be embarrassed. He called for the
group to re-admit Russia, though it has not atoned for the acts that got it thrown out–
meddling in Ukraine and invading Crimea. He needlessly insulted our allies through his
words and his actions. He came late and left early. He acted like a fool, and he made us
look foolish. He took a sledgehammer to our international reputation, and it’s going to
take a long time to repair the damage.
Barack Obama did not act this way. George W. Bush did not act this way. Bill Clinton did
not act this way. Every other president in living memory did not act this way because
regardless of their politics, they had reached the baseline level of maturity and personal
restraint needed to navigate a high-level meeting of this type. I don’t just want you to
make a statement about the G7 disaster. I want you to do something that makes it damn
clear that Trump’s G7 behavior is not acceptable. And I want you to do it now, before we
ruin our oldest international friendships just so Trump can salve his ego and please
Vladimir Putin. Thank you for listening.”

Subscribe to One Thing You Can Do by clicking the button on the upper right of the

page. And tell your friends about the blog!

 

 

 

Some cites about Trump and the 2018 G7:

 

Stories on Trump pulling the U.S. out of the G7 joint statement because he got shirty over stuff Trudeau said:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/trump-floats-end-to-all-tariffs-threatens-major-penalties-for-countries-that-dont-agree/2018/06/09/a06350be-6bf1-11e8-bea7-c8eb28bc52b1_story.html?

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/jun/10/g7-in-disarray-after-trump-rejects-communique-and-attacks-weak-trudeau

 

 

Trump suggests re-admitting Russia to the Gs, with no mention of the behavior that got them booted in the first place:

https://www.vox.com/world/2018/6/8/17441338/trump-russia-g7-summit

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/jun/08/donald-trump-shows-no-sign-compromise-flies-in-g7-summit

 

 

 

Pieces on how Trump suggested eliminating all tariffs:

https://www.cnn.com/2018/06/09/politics/trump-g7-tariffs-trade/index.html

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-44423072

https://www.businessinsider.my/trump-suggests-dropping-all-tariffs-trade-barriers-at-g7-summit-2018-6-2/

 

 

Stories on Trump pulling the U.S. out of the G7 joint statement because he got shirty over stuff Trudeau said:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/trump-floats-end-to-all-tariffs-threatens-major-penalties-for-countries-that-dont-agree/2018/06/09/a06350be-6bf1-11e8-bea7-c8eb28bc52b1_story.html?

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/jun/10/g7-in-disarray-after-trump-rejects-communique-and-attacks-weak-trudeau

In addition to following Pewter on Twitter (again, her handle is @Celeste_Pewter) you

can support her in other ways.

 

After you call your elected representatives on these two topics, tweet about the

experience using the #ICalledMyReps hashtag.

 

Pewter founded The Road to 2018, an organization devoted to defending Democratic

Senators who are vulnerable and up for re-election this year. See our post on it:

https://onethingyoucando.com/2018/02/25/support-the-road-to-2018-which-defends-democratic-senators/

 

Subscribe to Pewter’s peerless newsletter, It’s Time To Fight:

http://itstimetofight.weebly.com