Save These Tools

Follow Alexandra Erin on Twitter

This OTYCD entry originally posted in March 2017.

Follow Alexandra Erin on Twitter.

Erin is an author, poet, trans woman and all-round smart person who lives in Maryland and has an exceptional gift for interpreting and explaining Donald Trump, whether he is tweeting madly or reading someone else’s words off a teleprompter. She makes sense when it seems like there is no sense to be made.

Sample her genius by reading this Twitter thread on Trump’s address to a joint session of Congress on February 28:

https://www.kanvz.com/alexandraerin/canvas/1488382193824

 

Follow her on Twitter:

@alexandraerin

 

Read her blog here:

http://www.alexandraerin.com

 

Support her here:

https://www.patreon.com/AlexandraErin

https://www.paypal.com/donate/?token=3OEHAVn8SOrIky4-Et3gYMrIZxIW5Z1nOQZWj5CqEvnfzABpi01GyKbzHqSgZeI3xxfLxG

 

 

Call Your House Rep · Call Your Members of Congress · Call Your Senators · Community Activism · Read, Educate Yourself, Prepare · Save These Tools · Thank You Actions · Use Your Power, Recruit Friends

Follow Your Congressional Reps on Social Media

Are you active on social media, even a little bit? Are you thinking about signing on?

Please follow the pages and accounts of your Congressional representatives.

Pull up the web pages of your three Congressional reps–your two senators and your house rep. Social media platform logos tend to show up at the top of the home page or the bottom. If they’re not there, try the Contact page.

Most members of Congress are on Facebook and Twitter. If they’re on other platforms and you want to follow them there, go right ahead. But don’t feel like you must follow them on every platform. Do what makes sense for you.

If any of your reps are not on social media, or aren’t on the platform you like best, call their offices and ask them to join. You can bet there’s an intern or entry-level staffer who’s been chewing the rep’s ear off, trying to make their case. If enough constituents call to ask them to get on social media, or on a specific platform, that might change their minds.

Following your reps on social media is worth it. It keeps you up to date on what they’re saying and doing, and lets you know when they might appear at an event happening near you. It lets you show your support for them. And it helps move toward a world in which members of Congress take messages that arrive through social media as seriously as requests that come over the phone or through postal mail.

But don’t forget that for now (early 2017), social media is the least effective way to speak to your reps. If you need to ask your members of Congress to do something, use the phone. Do not use social media. Your message will not get through to them.

If you’re not on social media at all, consider signing up to follow your reps. You can have a private account on Twitter, and you can keep strict privacy settings on your Facebook page.

If you’re not on social media at all and have no wish to be, sign up for their e-newsletters and postal mailings instead, if you haven’t already. You should be able to do this through their web sites.

 

Action Alerts · Community Activism · Elections

Join the Sister District Project

Join the Sister District Project, an effort to help elect or defend Democrats in races across the country.

The Sister District Project is one of the many organizations that arose in the wake of the 2016 election. Its aim is to “build a grassroots network of volunteers to channel blue resources to nearby red areas where small, focused boosts can make an impact.”

It connects willing volunteers with teams that focus on down-ballot races that are strategically important and winnable. Needs change depending on the race but they can include donating, phone-banking, canvassing, boosting the signal through social media, etc. They’re also concerned with reversing pro-Republican gerrymandering and making sure that districts are fairly drawn after the 2020 census info comes in.

 

See the Sister District web site:

https://www.sisterdistrict.com

 

See its Who We Are and What We Do pages:

https://www.sisterdistrict.com/who-we-are/

https://www.sisterdistrict.com/what-we-do/

 

Find your Sister District team:

https://www.sisterdistrict.com/yourdistrict/

 

Like Sister District on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/sisterdistrict/

 

Follow it on Twitter:

@Sister_District

 

Donate to Sister District:

https://secure.actblue.com/contribute/page/sdp_inc

Community Activism · Elections

Join Flippable and See Which State-Level Races Need Your Help

This OTYCD entry originally posted in December 2017.

 

Join Flippable, which alerts you to state-level house and senate races with Democratic candidates who could use your help.

 

Flippable is one of many civic-minded organizations founded in the wake of the 2016 election. It points itself at state legislative elections, an aspect of the political scene that does not get the attention that it deserves.

 

In particular, Flippable exists to rebuild our country by electing Democrats at the state level. Democrats control too few state legislatures, and it’s the states that tend to serve as a farm team for future political talent–remember that Barack Obama was an Illinois state senator before he won a special election to serve as a senator from Illinois, and moved upward and onward from there.

 

 

Visit the Flippable home page:

https://www.flippable.org

 

 

Read the Flippable blog:

https://www.flippable.org/blog/

 

 

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!

 

 

Learn about other upcoming elections that could use your help:

https://www.flippable.org/upcoming-elections/

 

 

Like Flippable on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/flippableorg

 

 

Follow Flippable on Twitter:

@flippable_org

Community Activism · Save These Tools · Stand Up for Norms · Use Your Power, Recruit Friends · Vote with your Dollars

Support the Work of Sleeping Giants, Which Is Picking Off Breitbart’s Advertisers, One By One

This OTYCD entry originally posted in April 2017.

Enlist in the Sleeping Giants army, which has convinced more than 1,500 advertisers to abandon the disgusting right-wing site Breitbart.com.

Sleeping Giants appeared in the wake of the 2016 election and aims to cut off the lifeblood that sustains the hateful Breitbart.com site–advertising.

Anyone with a Twitter account can help their cause. Warning: It does require you to visit the Breitbart.com site. (But don’t go straight there, or else your search history will be tainted by the Breitbart visit. Open an incognito window first. If you don’t know how to do this, follow these instructions.)

Once there, take a screenshot of an ad next to their odious content. (Make sure to get both!)

Tweet the screenshot at the company behind the ad with a polite note asking them to stop advertising on Breitbart.

Repeat as often as you can stand it.

 

See Sleeping Giants’s confirmed list of advertisers who have left Brietbart.com due to its efforts (as of March 17, 1,594 companies had pulled out):

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1i9o8CR_kjJ6mBd44k6CRZEhlXuZqq-XCCOoj-e8RJ7Q/edit#gid=0

 

Read the Sleeping Giants FAQ:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/14xnkluiAdVqT-KmwcZRJs4U0wia9TIBRzPaUaGVCqRU/edit

 

Follow Sleeping Giants on Twitter:

@slpnggiants

 

Like its Facebook page:

https://www.facebook.com/slpnggiants/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Action Alerts · Call Your House Rep · Ethics · Marches and Protests · Stand Up for Norms · Use Your Power, Recruit Friends

Stand Ready to Defend the Office of Congressional Ethics (OCE), Which Might Come Under Attack

This OTYCD entry originally posted in June 2017.

 

Stand ready to defend the Office of Congressional Ethics (OCE) from renewed assault by Speaker of the House Paul Ryan and members of the House of Representatives.

 

One of the first things that the House of Representatives did in 2017 was attempt to kill the OCE, an independent ethics office created in 2008 in the wake of scandals that sent three MoCs to jail. Bob Goodlatte, a Republican house rep from Virginia, led the effort to neuter the office in a closed-door meeting on January 2.

 

An immediate outcry ensued. It was overshadowed by Trump jumping in to defend the OCE, and news reports gave him most of the credit for its survival. In truth, that response was the first real blow struck by the infant Resistance movement, who were alerted by news articles and the alarms sounded by watchdog groups.

 

Goodlatte, Speaker Ryan, and their ilk calculated that they would succeed because the OCE is seen as an annoyance by MoCs from both sides of the aisle. The sudden, sharp outcry convinced them to leave the office alone and try to “reform” it at “a future date.”

 

We thought that House Republicans might renew their attack under the cover of summer, hoping we’d be distracted by the general news slowdown and by our vacations. Mitch McConnell’s delay of recess for the Senate put paid to that. The house recessed on time and did not attack the OCE. But it is still vulnerable.

 

We at OTYCD are asking you to stand ready to defend the OCE and its valuable work.

 

Right now, you can call your house rep and speak up in favor of the OCE.

 

Sample script: “Dear House Rep (Lastname), I am from (town, zip code) and I am calling to speak up in favor of the Office of Congressional Ethics and its valuable work. You might recall that House Rep Bob Goodlatte led an effort to kill the OCE in early January, when the house came back into session following the holiday recess. The ensuing outcry forced Goodlatte and friends to abandon their efforts, but they said they would try again at a future time. I am concerned that they might be ready to aim their guns at the OCE again. I want to urge you to resist any efforts to kill or cripple the office. Thank you for listening.”

 

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!

 

Like the OCE’s web page:

https://www.facebook.com/OfficeofCongressionalEthics/

 

 

Follow the OCE on Twitter:

@CongressEthics

 

 

Read about the January 2017 efforts by members of the House of Representatives to kill or cripple the OCE:

http://www.politico.com/story/2017/01/office-of-congressional-ethics-what-does-it-do-233128

http://www.vanityfair.com/news/2017/01/house-gop-votes-to-gut-independent-congressional-ethics-office

http://www.pbs.org/newshour/rundown/house-republicans-vote-eviscerate-office-congressional-ethics/

 

 

Also see articles that mention Trump’s tweet about the OCE, and articles that question whether he should get the credit for saving it:

https://www.usnews.com/news/politics/articles/2017-01-03/house-gop-votes-to-gut-independent-ethics-office

http://www.latimes.com/opinion/opinion-la/la-ol-trump-ethics-20170103-story.html

Candidates · Choose Your Core Four · Elections · Use Your Power, Recruit Friends

Support the Road to 2018, Which Defends Democratic Senators

This OTYCD entry originally posted in January 2018.

 

Support The Road to 2018, an organization devoted to defending vulnerable Democrats in the Senate.

 

America would be a better place if Democrats had control of the House of Representatives and the Senate. Taking that latter chamber was always seen as a tall order. Doug Jones’s December 2017 win in Alabama makes the feat a bit less impossible, but it’s still a tough row to hoe. In order to gain control of the Senate, the Democrats must successfully defend all of its Senators who are running for re-election and win at least two additional seats as well.

 

The Road to 2018 winked into being just after the November 2016 election with the aim of defending the most vulnerable incumbent Democratic Senators.

 

It’s focusing on twelve Senators–eleven Democrats and an Independent:

Bill Nelson of Florida

Joe Donnelly of Indiana

Debbie Stabenow of Michigan

Claire McCaskill of Missouri

Angus King, Independent of Maine

Jon Tester of Montana

Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota

Sherrod Brown of Ohio

Bob Casey of Pennsylvania

Tim Kaine of Virginia

Joe Manchin of West Virginia

Tammy Baldwin of Wyoming

 

 

The Road to 2018 is well-focused and exquisitely on top of things. Please support their efforts.

 

 

See the website for The Road to 2018:

http://www.roadto2018.com

 

 

See its Senators page:

http://www.roadto2018.com/senators.html

 

 

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

 

 

See the Road to 2018 team:

http://www.roadto2018.com/about-us.html

 

 

Volunteer for The Road to 2018:

http://www.roadto2018.com/contact.html

 

 

Keep that list of Democratic Senators in mind when choosing your Core Four for 2018:

https://onethingyoucando.com/2017/12/24/choose-your-core-four-for-2018/

 

 

Like it on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/TheRoadto2018/

 

 

Follow it on Twitter:

@Roadto18

 

 

Follow Celeste Pewter on Twitter, who is involved with The Road to 2018 and is seemingly on top of EVERYTHING political that the Resistance cares about, as it happens:

@Celeste_Pewter

House Bills, Federal · Save These Tools · Senate Bills, Federal

Learn Whether and When to Freak Out Over Bills Moving Through Congress

This OTYCD entry originally posted in February 2017.

Learn whether and when to freak out over bills moving through Congress.

A while back, various corners of the internet whipped themselves into a minor freakout over H.R. 193, a bill that, if passed, would withdraw the United States from the United Nations.

In this Medium post, former Congressional aide Emily Ellsworth explains why H.R. 193 won’t go anywhere, and shows you how to spot the bills that could become laws.

To summarize her points:

No more than three percent of all bills became laws during the last four Congressional sessions.

Members of Congress introduce bills for lots of reasons, and making law isn’t necessarily one of them. They’re just as likely to offer a bill to:

 

Look productive

Roust their base

Please activists

Generate headlines back home

 

She offers three tools for following legislation that matters to you, and schooling yourself on them before you call your members of Congress about them:

https://www.govtrack.us

https://www.countable.us

https://www.popvox.com

 

Also, when looking at a bill’s prospects to become law, keep these thoughts in mind:

How many times has the bill been introduced before without going anywhere? If the answer is “a whole honking lot,” it’ll probably stall this time too.

Bills get referred to relevant Congressional committees. Do the bill’s sponsors and cosponsors actually sit on the right committee? If not, its chances aren’t that great.

Is the timing right? A bill that has to do with Standing Rock and the pipeline under construction will probably get more traction now than a general environmental bill.

How well does the bill suit the broader plans of the majority party? Congressional leaders will likely prioritize those.

 

…And this is where we at OTYCD feel compelled to admit a possible mistake.

About 10 days ago we wrote a blog post asking you to oppose H.R. 490, a bill that would ban abortion upon detection of a heartbeat. Its sponsor, Iowa Republican Steve King, dubbed it the Heartbeat Protection Act of 2017.

While it is a legitimate bill and King evidently hasn’t introduced something like it in previous sessions of Congress, it’s likely to wither and die. As of February 4, the Govtrack.com site says it has yet to be referred to a committee, and the Govtrack summary of the bill cites Predictgov odds of passage at 4 percent.

We will continue to watch this house bill and other bills of interest, but we admit (and, frankly, hope) H.R. 490 may well go nowhere.

See the Govtrack.com summary of H.R. 490:

https://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/115/hr490

See the OTYCD post on H.R. 490:

https://onethingyoucando.com/2017/01/23/call-your-house-rep-and-oppose-h-r-490-an-abortion-ban-bill/

 

 

 

Action Alerts · Community Activism · Read, Educate Yourself, Prepare · Stand Up for Civilization · Stand Up for Norms · Use Your Power, Recruit Friends

Celebrate Labor Day by Supporting Unions and the Fight for $15 Movement

Celebrate Labor Day by supporting those who stand up for workers: Unions,  and the Fight for $15 movement.

Are you in a union? Raise a glass to it on Labor Day and find a way to give it more support, through donating money or time or both.

 

Not in a union? Check out this Wikipedia page that lists labor unions in the U.S. Can you join one of these?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_labor_unions_in_the_United_States

 

Not in a union and can’t join those unions? Get behind the Fight for $15 movement.

Launched in 2012, it’s a confederation of underpaid workers who are pushing to raise the U.S. minimum wage to $15.

 

And whether you’re in a union or not, check out the American Federation of Labor & Congress of Industrial Organization (AFL-CIO)’s rabbit-hole-worthy page, Our Labor History Timeline, which lays out the history of the U.S. labor movement:

https://aflcio.org/about/history

 

Also, read this April 2017 piece from The Guardian newspaper on modern union organizing efforts in the U.S. South:

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/apr/28/unions-us-south-fight-for-15-labor-movement

 

Learn how to form a union, courtesy of the AFL-CIO:

https://aflcio.org/form-union

 

Follow the AFL-CIO on Twitter:

@AFLCIO

 

Like it on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/aflcio

 

Learn about the Fight for $15:

http://fightfor15.org/about-us/

 

Like it on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/Fightfor15/

 

Follow the Fight for $15 on Twitter:

@fightfor15

 

 

 

Elections

Follow Michael McDonald for Updates on Early Voting Figures for Jon Ossoff’s House Race in Georgia’s Sixth District

Follow Professor Michael McDonald for periodic updates on early voter turnout for Jon Ossoff and others running in the Georgia special election for its 6th District House of Representatives seat.

Dr. Michael P. McDonald is an associate professor of political science at the University of Florida. He runs the United States Election Project, which tracks American voter turnout.

Future posts will talk about the United States Election Project and its implications. Right now, we want you to know about McDonald’s Twitter feed, because he’s tracking and posting information about the early vote totals in the special election for the open house seat in Georgia’s 6th District, which Jon Ossoff hopes to win. If Ossoff can draw at least 51 percent of the vote, the seat becomes his, with no need for a head-to-head contest or a runoff.

According to his tweets on Sunday April 1, slightly more than 8,000 ballots were cast and accepted since early voting began on Monday, and the Democrats have the lead.

Follow Professor McDonald on Twitter:

@ElectProject