When you talk to your members of Congress, make sure to cite specific posts they’ve made to their social media accounts.
We live in the world of Facebook and Twitter, but our members of Congress don’t–at least not to the extent that we do. To them, phone calls are real, and letters are real, and email and faxes and postcards are real.
Social media posts are not as real to them as those other forms of communication. If you tweet at your MoCs or comment on their Facebook posts, they don’t take those statements as seriously as if you had phoned them or mailed them.
There’s a lot of reasons why this is so, and they’re long and boring and not really the point of this post. The point is that when you contact your MoCs by the means that are real to them, you should mention, and quote back to them, specific things you saw on their social media accounts.
Facebook, Twitter, and the like will start to become more real to your MoCs, and more like letters and phone calls and faxes in their minds, when you show them that you, their constituents and supporters, pay attention to social media.
The best way to do this is when you are contacting them to thank them for doing something: “Hey Senator (Lastname)! I saw you tweet about signing the Congressional letter condemning Trump’s pulling out of the Paris accord. Thank you for doing that!’ Linking social media with positive feedback will help move us closer to the day when social media becomes as accepted as all those other forms of communication.
This OTYCD entry originally posted in January 2017.
Are you a fan of California Senator Kamala Harris? How about New Jersey Senator Cory Booker? Or Minnesota House rep Keith Ellison?
Trolls target the social media postings of these and other popular Democratic members of Congress online, making nasty comments on their Facebook pages and their tweets.
You already know that you should not call members of Congress who do not represent you. They do not listen to citizens who live outside their legislative area. But you can support Democratic members of Congress you like, but who don’t represent you, by following them on social media.
Liking and sharing their posts helps get their message out. While you should still pay the most attention to your own reps’ social media accounts, following other Democrats online lets you know what those like-minded folks are saying and doing.
Learning what they are doing readies you to call your own reps and ask them to support what those out-of-state Democrats are doing. You can indirectly help Democrats you like by asking your own Congressional delegation to join forces with them on specific bills and actions that matter to you.
Ask your House rep to support H.R. 2884, the Communications Over Various Feeds Electronically for Engagement Act, aka the COVFEFE act.
OK, Illinois Democrat Mike Quigley was having a bit of fun when he named his act, but it has a serious and worthy purpose. It would amend the Presidential Records Act of 1978 to specify that a president’s communications over social media count as presidential records.
Amending the law in this manner formally recognizes that Donald Trump’s tweets, be they from his POTUS account or his personal account, are considered presidential communications, and must be documented for posterity. The law could also prevent Trump and future presidents from deleting tweets and might prevent a president from blocking individuals on Twitter.
Like Call the Halls, it was written by former Congressional staffers, and it is available for free. It complements and goes beyond Call the Halls by giving insight into how Tea Party groups managed to be so effective against a highly popular president despite their being so few in number. You can learn from Tea Party tactics and use them, to far greater effect, against a highly unpopular president.
The guide is a living document, which its creators continue to update. Don’t forget to sign up on the Indivisible site to receive them when they happen.
A key point Indivisible makes is to join a local activist group. Since releasing Indivisible online, its creators have added a search engine that will let you find the groups nearest you, as well as register your own:
Thank members of Congress John Lewis and Cory Booker for speaking out against Trump and his cabinet nominees.
New Jersey Senator Cory Booker testified against against Jeff Sessions, nominee for the United States Attorney General, during his Judiciary Committee hearings earlier this week. This was an especially brave act. It might be the only time that a sitting U.S. senator has testified against another sitting U.S. senator.
John Lewis, a civil rights hero who stands for Georgia’s Fifth District in the House of Representatives, also testified powerfully against Sessions at the Judiciary Committee hearings. Text for his remarks and a tape of Booker’s speech is below.
Side note: Know also that Lewis is under fire for saying on Meet the Press with Chuck Todd why he won’t be attending the upcoming presidential inauguration–the first he’s skipped since becoming a Congressman: “I don’t see this president-elect as a legitimate president. I think the Russians participated in helping this man get elected, and they helped destroy the candidacy of Hillary Clinton… I think there was a conspiracy on the part of the Russians and others to help him get elected. That’s not right. That’s not fair. That’s not the open democratic process.” A clip of the appearance, in which Lewis speaks this quote, is below; the full interview airs on the morning of Sunday January 15.
Lewis has received a lot of support on social media, but he’s also getting flak from Trump and his nastier minions. (You read that right–Trump wasn’t smart enough to avoid attacking John Lewis on the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday weekend.)
If either man is one of your members of Congress, call their offices on Tuesday to thank them. If they are not, send a thank-you postcard to these addresses (And if you’re upset about Booker’s vote against importing pharmaceutical drugs from Canada, send a second finger-wagging postcard–best to have one message per card) :
Senator Cory Booker
One Gateway Center
Newark, NJ 07012
House Representative John Lewis
100 Peachtree St NW
Atlanta, GA 30303
You can also tweet your thanks to Booker:
And you can tweet Lewis or leave a message on his Facebook page:
And here’s a nymag.com piece on the vote that Booker and 12 other Democrats took against the Sanders-Klobuchar amendment on importing prescription drugs. Twelve Republicans voted in favor. This occurred during the early-morning January 12 “vote-a-rama”.