Keep fighting the GOP tax bill, as you have been doing for the past several weeks. This post contains actions that will work for Friday, December 8. (Much of this worked the past few days, too. If you saw those posts, you will notice there are updates but not many changes here. Keep calling, keep fighting, recruit your friends and family to do the same, and also do something to assist Doug Jones’s Alabama Senate campaign. Thanks.)
First, let’s talk about where we are. If the bill hasn’t traveled to the Rose Garden, we still have time to stop it.
It’s not there yet. We can still stop it.
Now, fighting back.
There might be a GOP Tax Scam protest near you. #NotOnePenny events are scheduled through December 16, with many happening today and over the weekend. Check this link to see if one is near you:
Moveon.org is leading an effort to encourage constituents to drop by the offices of their members of Congress to speak to them directly about the effects of the GOP tax bill. This is a weeklong effort; today is the last day. Learn more at this link:
Jennifer Haberkorn (@jenhab), a senior health care reporter at Politico, tweeted on December 7:
House leaders have promised Rep. Mark Walker that Obamacare cost-sharing payments won’t be in any of the spending bills,
@sarahnferris reports. That would be BIG problem for getting the vote of Sen. Collins on tax bill.
Topher Spiro (@topherspiro) retweeted her, adding:
Later that same day, Taylor Kinzler (@Taylor_Kinzler), an anchor/reporter in Bangor, Maine, tweeted:
Spiro retweeted this too.
We at OTYCD would note: Collins didn’t say she would change her vote. She said she ‘will consider’ changing her vote. Still, it’s good news, and we urge our Maine friends to keep calling, and to urge your friends, family, and colleagues in Maine to keep calling.
If Collins ultimately votes no, and if Doug Jones wins, it’s probably game over for the tax bill. (We say probably because it’s not 100 percent clear to us that Jones would be seated in time to have an effect on the tax bill.)
The Senate has chosen its lineup for the Tax Conference Committee. They will represent the Senate when trying to reconcile the House and Senate versions of the GOP tax bill.
If any of these Republicans are your senators, it is super-extra-important for you to call and make your opposition known.
Orrin Hatch of Utah
Mike Enzi of Wyoming
Lisa Murkowski of Alaska
John Cornyn of Texas
John Thune of South Dakota
Rob Portman of Ohio
Tim Scott of South Carolina
Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania
In her December 6 update on fighting the GOP tax bill, Celeste Pewter (@Celeste_Pewter) offered talking points that you can use with friends, family, and co-workers:
8. Here are talking points you can include in any contact you share w/ friends/family/colleagues. Key point is that the impact on the deficit could eventually result in cuts in entitlement programs.
Andy Slavitt (@aslavitt) tweeted the following updated analysis of the tax bill situation on December 5:
Here’s what I’ve picked up on tax bill…. 2/
House has named their conference. Tomorrow [December 6] the Senate will name their members. Heard they are deadset on finishing the tax bill by 12/18.3/
Collins gave her vote in good faith for a lot of promises from WH/Ryan/McConnell.4/
The House is now saying no 2 Murray-Alexander, no to reinsurance & maybe to stopping the automatic Medicare cuts.5/
But they want the conference report out and voted on before the CR and all its complexity (DACA, CHIP) needs to be passed (with 60).6/
The current plan is to adopt the Senate approach to the ACA— leave in ending the mandate: see if Collins blinks & one more joins her.7/
One thing I’ve learned is never give up until it’s over and then make them drag you off the field. Then get back on as soon as possible.
Celeste Pewter, as always, will have news and actions faster than anyone.
We’ve been telling you for weeks and weeks and weeks to follow her. If for some odd reason you haven’t yet, best get on that:
She has the best instructions on what to do today. We’re going to cut and paste her December 4 tweets below. Again, all credit goes to @Celeste_Pewter for this.
Names of conference committee members for the
#taxbill slowly coming out. If you’re repped by: Kevin Brady (TX) Devin Nunes (CA) Peter Roskam (IL) Diane Black (TN) Kristi Noem (SD) Take note.
Yes, I rolled my eyes at this list too. It’s a pretty awful one. But if you’re repped by them, you’re now in a unique position to sound off on GOP House’s efforts for this bill. Take. advantage. of. it.
[Note from us: In other words, Pewter means that if any of these folks named in the tweet or in the Hill story are your House reps, it’s extra-important that you call and make your voice heard.]
Interrupting this string of Celeste Pewter tweets to insert a tweet from Scott Wong that gives the full list of nine House reps chosen for the task. Again, if they represent you, CALL CALL CALL:
@SpeakerRyan expected to name the following GOP conferees for tax negotiations: 1. Chairman Kevin Brady (TX) 2. Devin Nunes (CA) 3. Peter Roskam (IL) 4. Diane Black (TN) 5. Kristi Noem (SD) 6. Rob Bishop (UT) 7. Don Young (AK) 8. Greg Walden (OR) 9. John Shimkus (IL)
[Back to Pewter. At 7:30 pm EST she tweeted:]
In other words, yes – the House voted to go to conference. The Senate is expected to vote on the same this week. Your job: continue calling electeds from both chambers on why this tax bill harms you, and push them to strip as many of the egregious amendments as possible.
I realize it feels like we’re doing the same thing over and over, but GOP leadership in both chambers are counting on: 1. All the other ongoing issues (e.g. CR demands/potential shutdown), 2. the holidays, distracting you. Keep it up, and let them feel our fury.
This last tweet of Pewter’s brings up a good point. 2017 has been exhausting, and it has demanded a lot of you. If you’re feeling frayed, get rest. Coming up with and sticking to a self-care routine is one of the most important things you can do. Literally. We say so right here:
Don’t skip on rest breaks, folks. We need you here to carry on the fight. Every last one of you. For serious.
Another point, just for our friends in Maine: Senator Susan Collins says she voted yes in exchange for specific conditions.
Well, Topher Spiro (@topherspiro) tweeted on December 4:
BREAKING: The 3 big promises
@SenatorCollins got will NOT be done before the final vote on the tax bill. The bill to keep the govt open does NOT include Alexander-Murray, reinsurance, or waiver of Medicare cuts. #mepolitics https://rules.house.gov/sites/republicans.rules.house.gov/files/BILLS-115HJResPIH-CRFY18.pdf …
And also see this piece from the Daily Beast, which notes that Mitch McConnell gave his colleague Jeff Flake promises that the House of Representatives might torpedo:
If you are a constituent of Collins’s or Flake’s, now is the time to melt their phone lines with requests to ultimately vote no on this sorry mess of a bill.
And here also is a string of tweets that the aforementioned Andy Slavitt (@aslavitt) sent on the night of December 4 that sheds light on things:
What’s going on with the tax bill and ACA repeal component? I will catch you up on what I’m hearing shortly. Follow if interested.
Will also include update on CHIP. In I Hiram today where they are preparing to send out cancellation notices. 2/
House & Senate will go into conference (after some drama) to reconcile their bills. For all the other important issues, on health care…3/
The House bill doesn’t touch the ACA, Senate bill does. Two Senators can stop the ACA part from being added. 4/
With Collins promised the [sun], the [moon], and the [stars], all eyes turn from the tax bill to the C.R. 5/
Collins believes she will get all those things in the end of year CR (presuming it is extended from Friday). 6/
The CR is also where there needs to be a clean CHIP for Ds to back. And potentially DACA & a number of other things. 7/
Word is that conference/CR is complicated, entangled with lots of players & could take longer than Trump hopes. Specifically…8/
The Freedom Caucus is unlikely to give Collins her astronomy set and will still want her to vote for ACA mandate repeal. No way. 9/
The tax deal is not done. There’s a good chance this all sees January w right pressure. The ballgame (& Senate) could be different then. end
…Yes, folks, you read that right. This could stretch into January. We know, we know, we can sense your muscles tensing from here, but every extra day this gets dragged out is an extra day we have to fight.
Here also are several other folks aside from @Celeste_Pewter, @TopherSpiro, and @aslavitt who you should be following on Twitter to stay on top of the GOP tax bill, which is morphing constantly, like a suspect science experiment in a horror movie. Some of these people are old friends from the Trumpcare fights. Some are tax experts.
Ben Wikler @benwikler
Michael Linden @michaelslinden
Seth Hanlon @sethhanlon
Sunjeev Bery @sunjeevbery
Lily Batchelder @lilybatch
Greg Leiserson @gregleiserson
Chad Bolt @chadderr
Also, you might want to check the posts we put up over the weekend and make sure you’ve already done everything they recommend. For instance, if you haven’t called your governor yet and asked him or her to make a statement about the GOP tax bill, please do.
Links to our recent posts:
Also consider helping Democrat Doug Jones in his run for a seat in the Alabama Senate. There’s no guarantee that Jones will win but if he does, it will reduce the GOP’s numbers in the Senate from 52-48 to 51-49 and create more headaches for McConnell.
Posts on ways to help Doug Jones (we’ve deleted the link to our post on the GOTV postcard campaign because its deadline has passed):
You can also donate to a GoFundMe that will pay for buses, vans, and gas for getting Alabama voters to the polls on December 12. As of 9 pm EST on December 6, it had raised more than $18,500 toward its $20,000 goal:
One last note, which we’ve stated before: Even if this bill ultimately implodes and never becomes law, we still need to vote out every Republican that we can in 2018. This whole process has been nothing less than legislative malpractice. They should be punished for aiding and abetting it. Period.