Uncategorized

See Political Charge’s Landing Page for GOP Senate Seats to Flip in 2020

This post originally appeared on OTYCD in June 2019.

 

See Political Charge’s landing page for GOP Senate seats to flip in 2020.

 

We at OTYCD have an underbuilt but live page on all the Senate races of 2020. Yeah, yeah, we need to fill it in more, you’re right.

 

Political Charge, a smart and powerful blog we’ve plugged any number of times, has cut to the chase with a post about GOP Senate seats that are vulnerable to flipping in 2020.

 

 

See it here:

Here are the GOP Senate Seats to Flip in 2020

 

 

And while you’re at it, check out its post about Senate Democratic seats to protect in 2020:

Here are the Democratic Senate Seats To Protect in 2020

 

 

See the Political Charge blog (the subscription button is at the lower right, at the bottom of the page):

https://politicalcharge.org

 

 

Follow Tokyo Sand, author of Political Charge, on Twitter:

@DHStokyo

 

 

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Uncategorized

Believe It, You Matter, Part XIII: The GOP Really Is That Bad

This post originally appeared on OTYCD in July 2019.

 

Believe It, You Matter: the GOP really is that bad.

 

Sarah Jane here. I write all the Believe It, You Matter pieces for OTYCD.

 

Some time in 2018, I came across tweets from David Roberts (@drvox) that referenced the results of focus groups convened at various times between 2000 and 2014 with voters. They laid out information that showed what the GOP intended to do, if elected.

 

I’ve had trouble finding direct reference to the George W. Bush-era focus groups, but I was able to find them for the Romney-Ryan campaign in the 2012 cycle.

 

It describes groups convened by a Democratic Super PAC that attempted to alert voters to the extreme nature of the Romney-Ryan platform–promises to cut taxes for the wealthy and essentially destroy Medicare.

 

They hit a truly startling finding.

 

Apparently, a large number of the focus group recruits simply refused to believe that what the Super PAC described was, in fact, the Romney-Ryan platform.

 

They couldn’t wrap their heads around the notion that real politicians would advocate such unpopular and ruinous policies. Did not make sense. Did not compute. So they rejected the notion that the platform was the platform. It couldn’t be. It was cartoonishly evil. Real American politicians aren’t cartoonishly evil, because democracy, and civility, and American values, and rules and norms, and blah blah blah.

 

I’m going to drop the cites here before pivoting. Here’s a passage taken from a 2012 piece by David Roberts for Grist:

 

“If it’s hard for many folks to see the centrism already on offer from Obama, it’s also hard for the general public to see — to really understand — the radicalism on offer from the GOP. In the middle of Robert Draper’s recent New York Times Magazinepiece on Priorities USA Action, a Democratic super PAC, comes this astonishing detail:

Burton and his colleagues spent the early months of 2012 trying out the pitch that Romney was the most far-right presidential candidate since Barry Goldwater. It fell flat. The public did not view Romney as an extremist. For example, when Priorities informed a focus group that Romney supported the Ryan budget plan — and thus championed “ending Medicare as we know it” — while also advocating tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans, the respondents simply refused to believe any politician would do such a thing.[my emphasis]

That is, of course, an entirely accurate description of the Ryan budget plan. It’s precisely what Romney and the congressional GOP have said they will enact. And yet when voters hear it, it sounds over-the-top, like fear-mongering.

My guess is that most voters wouldn’t believe that the GOP has embarked on a nationwide effort to disenfranchise low-income and minority voters, but that’s just what they’ve done. (Here’s the latest.) Most voters wouldn’t believe that Romney and the GOP want to end the Environmental Protection Agency as we know it, but that is precisely what they have said they will do; Romney has expressed only eagerness to work with the most anti-environmental House of Representatives in the history of the institution.”

 

Here is the July 5, 2012 New York Times piece in which Roberts found the information about the focus group. (Scroll down to the subhead with the words “Last December” in bold:

 

And here is a MaddowBlog piece that references the post-9/11 focus groups. Not an ideal cite, but unfortunately, I can’t find other sources talking about it (I invite others to send them if they find them):

http://www.msnbc.com/rachel-maddow-show/why-focus-groups-incredulity-matters

 

 

I realized I should pass on this information about the focus group results, but for months, I couldn’t figure out how. One of the fundamental tenets of OTYCD is to offer bad news with substantial side dishes of, you know, THINGS YOU CAN DO to fight back against what the news represents.

 

The focus group results are important, but they don’t offer anything inherent to act on.

 

Well, I’ve finally figured it out.

 

You can use this information when you talk to friends and family about the importance of voting.

 

It seems gross and Pollyanna-ish to find a silver lining in the torrent of bullshit that Trump has rained upon us since November 2016, but there is this:

 

The disbelief that people expressed earlier in the century about the GOP should have evaporated by now.

 

People should be far more likely to believe that the GOP and its goals are cartoonishly evil.

 

Only people who are cartoonishly evil would stick with Trump, despite the mountains upon mountains of evidence that he’s incompetent, incapable, venal, self-serving, and thoroughly corrupt.

 

Only people who are cartoonishly evil would support placing babies in cages.

 

Only people who are cartoonishly evil would go mute in the face of Trump’s outrageous capers with Vladimir Putin, Kim Jong-Un, Mohammad bin Salman, and other autocrats.

 

Only people who are cartoonishly evil would plow ahead with the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh after the president, who was, by then, credibly accused of a felony by Michael Cohen, placed 93 percent of Kavanaugh’s work product under the veil of executive privilege, and off-limits to their evaluation.

 

Only people who are cartoonishly evil would stand by while Trump refuses to safeguard elections and announces he’d be open to accepting information about opponents from foreign governments, which is a crime.

 

Only people who are cartoonishly evil… I could write so many more of these. You get the point.

 

When you talk to friends and family about the importance of voting, you can say “I don’t know what happened, but the GOP has completely gone around the bend. [Reel off a bunch of things they’ve done under Trump, describing each with neutral, factual, uncharged language. That means don’t use the phrase “cartoonishly evil,” btw.] Even if you don’t normally vote for Democrats, it’s important you do so now, to help the country find its way back to something that looks like sanity.”

 

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Marches and Protests · Uncategorized

Join A No War With Iran Protest TODAY, January 9, 2020. Events Start at 5 pm Local Time, Wherever You Are

Join a No War With Iran protest TODAY, January 9, 2020. The events will start at 5 pm your local time, whatever time zone you are in.

 

Sarah Jane here. I cleared my after-dinner schedule for January 7 to make time to juggle the OTYCD queue to spread the word about these anti-war protests.

 

Then Iran struck back, as we had all expected.

 

So, yeah. These protests are even more timely than they were when they were originally planned.

 

These protests are another MoveOn.org action, in conjunction with Indivisible, Win Without War, NIAC Action, and more.

 

The website is: nowarwithiran.org.

 

Go here and plug in your zip code to find the protest site nearest you. No doubt, many more will be added in the hours leading up to the 5 pm go-time.

 

If you can’t attend, think about how you might be able to help others attend–offering rides, parking and gas money, taking over caregiving duties, whatever works.

 

If you can’t attend and can’t assist in that manner, spread the word about the protests on social media and boost the protests as they take place today, starting at 5 pm.

 

And! Don’t forget to call your members of Congress–your House Rep and both your Senators–to voice your opposition to possible war with Iran.

 

Please see Celeste Pewter’s feed on Twitter (@Celeste_Pewter) for up-to-date scripts.

 

If you’re seeing this post after hours, still call your Congressfolk, but leave them voice mail messages.

 

If their voice mail is full, use the email message function on their official web pages.

 

Subscribe to One Thing You Can Do by clicking the blue button on the upper right or checking the About & Subscribe page. And tell your friends about the blog!

Marches and Protests · Uncategorized

Join a No War With Iran Protest Tomorrow, January 9, 2020, at 5 pm at Your Local Time

Join a No War With Iran protest on January 9, 2020. They will start at 5 pm your local time, whatever time zone you are in.

 

Sarah Jane here. I cleared my after-dinner schedule for January 7 to make time to juggle the OTYCD queue to spread the word about these anti-war protests.

 

Then Iran struck back, as we had all expected.

 

So, yeah. These protests are even more timely than they were when they were originally planned.

 

These protests are another MoveOn.org action, in conjunction with Indivisible, Win Without War, NIAC Action, and more.

 

The website is: nowarwithiran.org.

 

Go here and plug in your zip code to find the protest site nearest you. No doubt, many more will be added in the hours leading up to Thursday.

 

If you can’t attend, think about how you might be able to help others attend–offering rides, parking and gas money, taking over caregiving duties, whatever works.

 

If you can’t attend and can’t assist in that manner, spread the word about the protests on social media and boost the protests as they take place on January 9.

 

And! Don’t forget to call your members of Congress–your House Rep and both your Senators–to voice your opposition to possible war with Iran.

 

Please see Celeste Pewter’s feed on Twitter (@Celeste_Pewter) for up-to-date scripts.

 

If you’re seeing this post after hours, still call your Congressfolk, but leave them voice mail messages.

 

If their voice mail is full, use the email message function on their official web pages.

 

Subscribe to One Thing You Can Do by clicking the blue button on the upper right or checking the About & Subscribe page. And tell your friends about the blog!

 

Save These Tools · Uncategorized

Self-advocacy 101: Find Your Congressional Representatives

FWIW: This is the first-ever post to OTYCD, uploaded on January 7, 2017. Happy Birthday to Us!

 

Before you can start pushing back against Trump, you need to know who represents you in Congress.

 

Find out who your Congressional representatives are by plugging your zip code and your state into this web site:

http://whoismyrepresentative.com/

 

This web site is better for learning who stands for you in the House of Representatives (plug in your zip code and it will narrow the choices to two. The name that seems more familiar to you is probably your House rep):

http://www.house.gov/representatives/find/

 

Once you have pinned down your two Senators and your House Rep, pull up their web pages. Scroll to the bottom. If their offices aren’t listed there, go to the Contact page and find them.

 

Pick the state office that is closest to you (*NOT the Washington D.C. one).

Find the phone number for that office.

Put it in your phone.

Repeat for your other two representatives.

Done!

 

* You can put the Washington, D.C. numbers in your phone, but call them last. You are far more likely to reach a real person if you call the district offices.

 

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Action Alerts · Community Activism · Uncategorized · Voting Rights, Fighting Voter Suppression

All the State Deadlines to Register to Vote in the 2020 Primaries, Compiled by Head Count (Please Spread the Word on This NOW, in January 2020)

Are you registered to vote? Do you need to help friends and family register to vote in time for their state’s 2020 presidential primary? Here’s a list of all the state deadlines.

 

If you want to vote in the 2020 presidential primaries, you have to register. If you’re not super-hyper-mega plugged in to politics, you might only notice your state’s primary before it happens but after the voter registration deadline has passed.

 

One of the many ways you can help push back against Trump in 2020 is make sure it isn’t just you going to the polls. You can help friends and family vote, too.

 

The good folks at Head Count have compiled a master sheet of all the state deadlines to register to vote in 2020. Bookmark it and share it early and often.

 

It’s important to start talking to people about deadlines to register to vote in the state primaries NOW, in January 2020, because the earliest of those deadlines fall in February 2020, and one deadline — South Carolina’s — takes place January 30, 2020.

 

Head Count is an excellent nonpartisan organization that sets up shop at concerts and helps register newly eligible young people to vote.

 

See its main website.

 

See its voting information page.

 

Learn how to volunteer with Head Count.

 

See the list of upcoming events at which Head Count will appear.

 

Donate to Head Count.

 

Like Head Count on Facebook.

 

Follow Head Count on Twitter.

 

Subscribe to One Thing You Can Do by clicking the blue button on the upper right or checking the About & Subscribe page. And tell your friends about the blog!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Uncategorized

See the Full List of Sitting Senators Who Are Up for Re-election in 2020 (Updated and Expanded in December 2019)

 

See the full list of sitting senators who are up for re-election in 2020.

 

2018 was a tough year for Democratic sitting Senators. Many more Democrats than Republicans were up for re-election. While we lost two, Bill Nelson of Florida and Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota, we managed to pick up two seats–Jacky Rosen defeated Dean Heller in Nevada, and Kyrsten Sinema won the open seat in Arizona.

 

Things could have been a lot worse, and would have been a lot worse in the absence of voters highly motivated by the unusually terrible performance of the Trump administration. If a more normal and routine Republican had been president in 2018, the Democrats might have suffered more losses.

 

The 2020 story is different. Many more Republicans are defending than are Democrats.

 

This is an expanded version of a basic post first published in April 2019. It flags which Republican Senators have chosen not to run again, and gives additional details on those open seats. It also gives details on select Republican Senators who are regarded as vulnerable to defeat.

 

We at OTYCD are giving these details in part so you can choose candidates for your Core Four Plus for 2020. If you are able to donate to Democratic Senate incumbents or Democratic challengers to incumbent Republican Senators before 2019 ends, please do.

 

The following Democrats are up for re-election in 2020:

 

Cory Booker of New Jersey

 

Christopher Coons of Delaware

 

Richard “Dick” Durbin of Illinois

 

*Doug Jones of Alabama

 

Ed Markey of Massachusetts

 

Jeff Merkley of Oregon

 

Gary Peters of Michigan

 

Jack Reed of Rhode Island

 

*Jeanne Shaheen of New Hampshire

 

Tina Smith of Minnesota

 

Tom Udall of New Mexico

 

Mark Warner of Virginia

 

*These two Democrats are regarded as the most vulnerable who are up for re-election in 2020. Jones is regarded as the most vulnerable of the pair. Please give them special consideration when choosing your Core Four Plus for 2020.

 

The following Republicans are up for re-election in 2020 (especially vulnerable incumbents are marked with **):

 

Lamar Alexander of Tennessee. Alexander announced in December 2018 that he would not run again. As of December 2019, four Democrats and seven Republicans are competing for the seat. The primary takes place on August 6, 2020.

The Cook Political Report regards the seat as Solid Republican.

 

 

Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia

 

Bill Cassidy of Louisiana

 

 

**Susan Collins of Maine. After much delay, Collins finally announced in December 2019 that she would in fact run again for her Senate seat. After she cast a critical vote that placed Brett Kavanaugh on the Supreme Court of the United States, Ady Barkan’s Be a Hero organization and other Maine activists launched a Crowdpac campaign to raise money for her then as-yet-undeclared Democratic challenger. As of June 2019, they had collected $4 million.

Sara Gideon leads the pack of four Democrats vying to challenge Collins for her seat. The primary takes place on June 9, 2020. Presumably, the winner of the Democratic primary will receive the funds raised through Crowdpac.

The Cook Political Report regards Collins’s seat as a Toss-up.

 

 

John Cornyn of Texas

 

Tom Cotton of Arkansas

 

Steve Daines of Montana

 

Michael Enzi of Wyoming. In May of 2019, Enzi announced he would not run again in 2020. As of December 2019, one Democrat, Yana Ludwig, and three Republicans had committed to run in the August 18, 2020 primary.

The Cook Political Report rates Enzi’s seat as Solid Republican.

 

 

**Joni Ernst of Iowa. She’s running for a second term, but is widely regarded as a vulnerable Republican incumbent. Five Democrats and one other Republican will appear in the June 2, 2020 primary.

The Cook Political Report regards Ernst’s seat as Likely Republican.

 

 

**Cory Gardner of Colorado. Like Ernst, he’s running for a second term. Eight Democrats, including newly-former Governor (he was term-limited out) and newly-former 2020 presidential candidate John Hickenlooper, will be on the June 30, 2020 primary ballot.

The Cook Political Report rates Gardner’s seat as a Toss-up.

 

 

Lindsey Graham of South Carolina. He’s running again, and he has yet to be lumped in with Collins, Ernst, and Gardner, but he might be more vulnerable than he appears. He has a strong Democratic challenger in Jaime Harrison, and a mid-December 2019 poll had him with a two-point lead–within the poll’s 3.1 percent margin of error.

Harrison is one of three other Democrats and five other Republicans challenging Graham in the state’s primary, which takes place on June 9, 2020. If a runoff is required, it will take place on June 23, 2020.

The Cook Political Report rates Graham’s Senate seat as Solid Republican.

 

 

Cindy Hyde-Smith of Mississippi

 

James Inhofe of Oklahoma

 

Mitch McConnell of Kentucky. He’s running again, he leads the GOP Senate majority; and many (including we at OTYCD) agree he’s done as much, if not more, damage to American democracy and the rule of law as has Trump, so we’re including him in this expanded update.

Six Democrats, including Amy McGrath, will appear in the May 19, 2020 primary, along with another Republican.

The Cook Political Report rates McConnell’s seat as Likely Republican, which gives a glimmer of hope. If McConnell was truly well-regarded in his home state, the Cook rating would be the strongest rating, Solid Republican. That said–if you see a poll flying around on social media or the Internet that claims McConnell’s polling numbers in Kentucky are dismal, check the date. The one that pops up most often was taken in summer 2017, which, really, is too old to bother with now.

 

 

David Perdue of Georgia

 

James Risch of Idaho

 

Pat Roberts of Kansas. In January 2019, Roberts announced that he would not run for a fifth term. Four Democrats and seven Republicans, including the loathsome Kris Kobach, will appear on the primary ballot on August 4, 2020.

The Cook Political Report rates the Senate seat as Likely Republican.

 

Mike Rounds of South Dakota

 

 

Ben Sasse of Nebraska. Addressing this now because there might be a little confusion. Sasse has spoken out against Trump, but he IS running for re-election in 2020. Arizona Senator Jeff Flake was the one who spoke out against Trump and decided to quit the Senate.

Sasse is unchallenged by his party in the May 12, 2020 primary. Three Democrats are also running.

The Cook Political Report rates Sasse’s seat as Solid Republican.

 

 

Thom Tillis of North Carolina

 

 

 

See the official list of senators in Class II here:

https://www.senate.gov/senators/Class_II.htm

 

 

We relied on Ballotpedia for several raw facts for this update. It merits your full support.

 

 

See the main Ballotpedia webpage:

https://ballotpedia.org/Main_Page

 

 

Read its Our History page:

https://ballotpedia.org/Our_History

 

 

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Read its Contact and FAQ page:

https://ballotpedia.org/Ballotpedia:Overview_and_contact_information

 

 

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