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See This List of Members of the House Freedom Caucus So You Can Vote Them Out in November

See this list of the current sitting members of the House Freedom Caucus, so you can vote them out in November.

 

The House Freedom Caucus is the most far-right group of Congresspeople within the House Republican Conference. While not everyone in it is thoroughly terrible–Michigan’s Justin Amash is clearly, and refreshingly, possessed of a functioning spine–they engage in shenanigans on the regular.

 

A recent notable beclownment was its drafting of articles of impeachment against Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein in late April 2018.

 

North Carolina Rep Mark Meadows characterized the document as a “last resort” if Rosenstein continued to rebuff requests for information about Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Trump’s involvement with Russia.

 

Anyone with a functioning brain realizes the HFC is trying to undermine Rosenstein, Mueller, and the probe. Reporting on the draft simply credits it to the HFC, and only names Meadows specifically in connection with the document.

 

News stories on the matter say nothing about who, exactly, drafted it, so we are left to infer that everyone in the HFC approves of it, even if they might not have personally worked on it.

 

In light of this, we’re devoting this post to listing every current, sitting member of the HFC so you can help vote them out in November 2018. If these folks represent you, you’re probably already well aware of their records. If they don’t, it’s worth learning about them and looking into helping their Democratic opponents. (Every member of the House of Representatives is defending their seats this fall, assuming they’re not retiring.)

 

Several of these names will be familiar from an earlier OTYCD post on eleven House GOP members who called for investigating Andrew McCabe, James Comey, Sally Yates, Hillary Clinton, and assorted Department of Justice personnel for bias. We have repeated information from that post where appropriate.

 

The HRC does not publish or otherwise identify its members. What you see below represents the best list available as of April 2018.

 

 

Justin Amash, representing Michigan’s 3rd District. As stated above, Amash is unusual for displaying consistency as well as a spine. Let’s be clear here–his politics are odious, but he does have that going for him. He also appears to vote more often with the Democrats, but that’s largely a function of him rejecting legislation because it’s not conservative or far-right enough for his tastes. Make of that what you will.

Amash is running for a fifth term. The primary takes place August 7, 2018. He will face one Republican challenger. There are also two Democrats and an Independent in the mix. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

 

Joe Barton, representing Texas’s 6th District. In November 2017, he announced that he would retire from Congress after a three-decade career in the House of Representatives. This statement came soon after news broke of his involvement in extramarital affairs. It should be said that no one has accused Barton of sexual misconduct or harassment, and the affairs were consensual. Regardless, he felt it best not to run again.

 

Democrat Jana Lynne Sanchez will face Republican Ronald Wright and Libertarian Jason Harper in November. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

Read OTYCD‘s post on Democrat Jana Lynne Sanchez:

https://onethingyoucando.com/2018/05/26/keep-an-eye-on-jana-lynne-sanchez-who-is-running-for-a-texas-house-seat-in-2018/

 

 

Andy Biggs, representing Arizona’s 5th District. He’s running for his second term. Five Democrats are running in the August 28, 2018 primary. No Republicans have stepped up to challenge Biggs; the filing deadline is May 30. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

 

Rod Blum, representing Iowa’s 1st District. He’s running for a third term, and he looks especially vulnerable. The 1st was a battleground district in 2016, and Politico has listed the race as one of the top 10 House races to watch in 2018. Four Democrats and a Green Party member will appear in the June 5 primary. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as a Toss-up.

 

 

Dave Brat, representing Virginia’s 7th District. He first gained notoriety for his improbable defeat of the powerful GOP incumbent Eric Cantor. Brat won’t face any Republicans in the primary, but two Democrats and a Whig Party member (yes, you read that right, the Whig Party) will appear in the June 12, 2018 primary. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Lean Republican.

 

Mo Brooks, representing Alabama’s 5th District. He’s running for his fifth term. The June 5, 2018 primary features one other Republican and a Democrat. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

Ken Buck, representing Colorado’s 4th District. He’s running for a third term. Two Democrats will meet in the June 26, 2018 primary; he has no Republican challengers. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

Ted Budd, representing North Carolina’s 13th District. He’s seeking a second term. He will face Democrat Kathy Manning and Libertarian Tom Bailey in November. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Lean Republican.

 

Warren Davidson, representing Ohio’s 8th District. He won a special election in 2016, won the general later that year, and is running again this fall, where he will compete against Democrat Vanessa Enoch. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

Ron DeSantis, representing Florida’s 6th District. He’s retiring from his House seat in order to run for governor of Florida. Three Democrats and five Republicans will appear in the August 28, 2018 primary. The filing deadline is May 4. As of September 2017, Nancy Soderberg had the most cash on hand among the Democrats. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

Scott DesJarlais, representing Tennessee’s 4th District. He’s running for a fifth term. He faces one challenger in the August 2, 2018 primary, which will also have three Democrats and an Independent. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

Jeff Duncan, representing South Carolina’s 3rd District. He’s running for a fifth term. Two Democrats and a member of the American party will run in the June 12, 2018 primary. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

Matt Gaetz, representing Florida’s 1st District. He’s running for a second term. Two Democrats and two other Republicans will meet him in the August 28, 2018 primary. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

Tom Garrett Jr., representing Virginia’s 5th District. He sent mixed signals in late May, saying he wouldn’t run for a second term, and then saying he would. His re-election campaign appears to be on. He will face Democrat Leslie Cockburn, who won the most votes at the May 5, 2018 primary convention. Independent John Harris is running as a write-in candidate. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Lean Republican.

 

Louie Gohmert, representing Texas’s 1st District. He was first elected to the House in 2004 and is running again. He will face Democrat Shirley McKellar and Libertarian Jeff Callaway in November. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

Paul A. Gosar, representing Arizona’s 4th District. He is running for a fifth term. Three Democrats and a Green Party member will run in the August 28, 2018 primary. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

Morgan Griffith, representing Virginia’s 9th District. He’s running for a fifth term. No challenger will meet him in the June 12, 2018 primary, but two Democrats and an Independent will appear. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

Andy Harris, representing Maryland’s 1st District. He is seeking a fifth term. This is a crowded field. Six Democrats, including Allison Galbraith, two other Republicans, and a Libertarian have committed to the June 26, 2018 primary. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

See the OTYCD entry on Allison Galbraith:

https://onethingyoucando.com/2018/04/08/support-democrat-allison-galbraith-whos-running-for-a-house-seat-in-maryland/

 

Jody Hice, representing Georgia’s 10th District. He’s running for a third term. The May 22, 2018 primary includes three Democrats, two other Republicans, and an Independent. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

Jim Jordan, representing Ohio’s 4th District (he’s also co-chair of the HFC). He was first elected to the House in 2006. He will face Democrat Janet Garrett in November. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

Raúl Labrador, representing Idaho’s 1st District. He is running for governor of Idaho in 2018. Republican Russ Fulcher and Democrat Christina McNeil will face off in November.  The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

Mark Meadows, representing North Carolina’s 11th District (he’s also co-chair of the HFC). He’s seeking a fourth term. He will face Democrat Phillip Price in November. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

Alex Mooney, representing West Virginia’s 2nd District. He’s running for a third term. He’s competing against Democrat Talley Sergent. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

Gary Palmer, representing Alabama’s 6th District. Like Mooney, he’s running for a third term. The primary happens June 5, 2018, but Palmer and Democrat Danner Kline are the only ones on the ballot in each case, and there are no candidates from other parties this time around. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

Steve Pearce, representing New Mexico’s 2nd District. Pearce is in New Mexico’s gubernatorial race, leaving the House seat free in 2018. The primary takes place June 5, 2018, and features two Democrats and four Republicans. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Lean Republican.

 

Scott Perry, representing Pennsylvania’s 4th District. In February 2018, the state’s Supreme Court threw out the old Congressional district map, deeming it illegally gerrymandered. What was the 4th now covers much of what was the 13th district. Perry does not appear to be running again, and the Democratic incumbent under the old map, Brendan Boyle, is seeking re-election in the 2nd District. Got that?

Democrat Madeleine Dean will face Republican Dan David in November. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Democratic.

 

Bill Posey, representing Florida’s 8th District. He first won election in 2008 and is running again. The primary is set for August 28, but only Posey and Democrat Sanjay Patel are on it, with no one from the smaller parties in the mix. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

Mark Sanford, representing South Carolina’s 1st District. If the name sounds familiar, yeah, this was the guy who melted down as governor of South Carolina over extramarital affairs. Remember “hiking the Appalachian Trail”? Yeah, he’s that guy. Anyway, he won the House seat in a special election in 2013 and is running again. He faces two other Republicans in the June 12, 2018 primary. Two Democrats will appear as well. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Likely Republican.

 

David Schweikert, representing Arizona’s 6th District. He’s seeking a fifth term. The August 28, 2018 primary is crowded on the Democratic side, with five candidates, but clear on the Republican side, with Schweikert the only choice. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Likely Republican.

 

Randy Weber, representing Texas’s 14th District. He’s hoping for a fourth term, and is facing Democrat Adrienne Bell and Libertarian Don Conley III. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

See OTYCD‘s post on Adrienne Bell:

https://onethingyoucando.com/2018/05/26/support-adrienne-bells-run-for-the-house-seat-in-texass-14th-district/

 

 

Ted Yoho, representing Florida’s 3rd District. He’s running for a fourth term. Three Democrats will run in the August 28, 2018 primary. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

 

Choose the Democratic challengers of any of these folks for your Core Four:

https://onethingyoucando.com/2018/04/08/choose-your-core-four-for-2018/

 

 

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As for cites on the House Freedom Caucus…

 

Read about the HFC’s drafting of articles of impeachment against Rod Rosenstein:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/trump-allied-house-conservatives-draft-articles-of-impeachment-against-rosenstein-as-last-resort/2018/04/30/d78af412-4c97-11e8-b725-92c89fe3ca4c_story.html?utm_term=.5a0ab3b10263

http://thehill.com/homenews/administration/384217-impeaching-rosenstein-some-republicans-are-talking-about-it

 

Read the actual articles of impeachment against Rosenstein, obtained by the Washington Post:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2018/05/01/republicans-highly-political-articles-of-impeachment-against-rod-rosenstein-annotated/?utm_term=.402747613668

 

 

Read a USA Today Op-Ed on how the impeachment effort against Rosenstein represents a violation of ethical rules and an attempt to hobble Mueller’s probe:

https://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2018/05/02/impeachment-articles-rosenstein-sabotage-russia-probe-column/572548002/

 

 

Read a CNN story on a Democratic member of the House Judiciary Committee decrying the HFC’s shens:

https://www.cnn.com/2018/05/01/politics/david-cicilline-rod-rosenstein-impeachment-cnntv/index.html

 

 

Read stories about Rod Rosenstein standing firm in the face of the HFC’s threat:

https://www.citizen-times.com/story/news/local/2018/05/02/mark-meadows-rod-rosenstein-extortion-justice-department-mueller/573291002/

 

 

And read some background on the HFC:

http://time.com/4718360/freedom-caucus-donald-trump-what-to-know/

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Rebuke Trump and Help the FBI By Donating to Its Charities

Rebuke Trump and show support for the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) by donating to charities that help FBI families.

 

If you believe Donald Trump’s tweets, the FBI is a hotbed of radical liberalism, bent on taking down his administration. We should’t have to tell you not to believe Trump’s tweets–they’re absurd. The FBI is many things, but a bastion of leftist free-thinking it is not.

 

Many, many people have decried Trump’s attacks on the FBI. Benjamin Wittes (@benjaminwittes) of Lawfareblog seems to be the first to fight back by supporting FBI-related charities. On December 23, he tweeted:

The President is impugning the integrity of the FBI by attacking two honorable public servants: Jim Baker and Andy McCabe. I just donated $1,000 to the in their names. I urge others to give as well and tweet that you did so to .

 

He then retweeted several others who mentioned their donations in honor of Baker and McCabe on social media.

 

Later that day, the FBI Agents Association (@FBIAgentsAssoc) tweeted:

Thank you to everyone who has generously contributed to our charitable funds. Your money will directly benefit FBI families in need.

 

On December 24, former CIA director John Brennan (@JohnBrennan) pointedly joined the cause, tweeting:

Andy McCabe & Jim Baker epitomize integrity, competence, and respect for rule of law. Not surprised fears them, along with the rest of FBI. I just donated to as a small way of saying . Here’s how you can too:

 

The FBI Agents Association administers two charities.

 

The Membership Assistance Fund helps FBI families who suffer a sudden, unforeseen tragedy, such as a cancer diagnosis or an accident.

 

The Memorial College Fund provides scholarships to the children and spouses of FBI personnel who died on the job or within a year of leaving the agency.

 

Both are 501(c) (3) charities. Note: If you are uncomfortable with guns, you might want to focus on the Membership Assistance Fund alone. The Memorial College Fund has raised money through the sale of commemorative firearms.

 

We at OTYCD recognize that the FBI is not a perfect organization, and its history includes some pretty terrible acts. That said, it most emphatically does not deserve the abuse that Trump is raining on it, and we should do what we can to defend the FBI in the context of defending the infrastructure of democracy from the corrosive effects of Trump’s authoritarian whims. Donating to these two FBI charities are a way to stand up for the agency and its people, who have been unfairly maligned.

 

 

See the main donation page for the FBI Agents Association:

https://fbiaa.org/ways-to-donate

 

 

See its page for the Membership Assistance Fund:

https://fbiaa.org/membership-assistance-fund

 

 

See its page for the Memorial College Fund:

https://fbiaa.org/memorial-college-fund

 

 

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!

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Learn Which 11 House GOP Members Asked the Department of Justice to Investigate James Comey, Hillary Clinton, Andrew McCabe, Sally Yates, and Other DOJ Officials for Bias–And Vote Them Out in the Fall

See a list of eleven House GOP members who asked the Department of Justice (DOJ) to investigate former FBI head James Comey, Hillary Clinton, Andrew McCabe, Sally Yates and other DOJ officials Trump has attacked on Twitter for bias, and vote these twerps out in the fall.

 

Devin Nunes is not the only House GOP member beclowning himself. Though they’ve got a ways to go before they match Nunes in the malevolent goon stakes, eleven sitting House GOP members signed a letter in mid-April 2018 asking the DOJ to investigate James Comey, Hillary Clinton, Andrew McCabe, Sally Yates, Dana Boente, and other DOJ officials who have annoyed Trump.

 

They signed a letter that alleges pro-Clinton or anti-Trump bias on behalf of those prominent players and urges the DOJ to investigate. To wit, from the letter:

 

“Because we believe that those in positions of high authority should be treated the same as every other American, we want to be sure that the potential violations of law outlined below are vetted appropriately.”

 

Many of the eleven signatories have expressed or advanced egregious far-right statements, such as attacking Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation and demanding that Mueller step down, calling for a second special counsel to investigate Hillary Clinton, claiming that many mass murderers end up being Democrats (Claudia Tenney), sticking up for private prisons who want to pay prisoners a dollar a day for their work (Paul A. Gosar, Andy Biggs, Matt Gaetz, Jody Hice)… you get the picture. Congress, and the American people, would be better off without them.

 

Below is a list of the eleven, with information about Democratic challengers. Unless otherwise specified, they’re assumed to be running for re-election in the fall.

 

These will be tough seats to take. The Cook Political Report rates most of them as Solid Republican, which is the strongest Republican rating it assigns. That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try, though.

 

 

Ron DeSantis, representing Florida’s 6th District. He’s retiring from his House seat in order to run for governor of Florida. Three Democrats and five Republicans will appear in the August 28, 2018 primary. The filing deadline is May 4. As of September 2017, Nancy Soderberg had the most cash on hand among the Democrats. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

Andy Biggs, representing Arizona’s 5th District. He’s running for his second term. Five Democrats are running in the August 28, 2018 primary. No Republicans have stepped up to challenge Biggs; the filing deadline is May 30. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

Dave Brat, representing Virginia’s 7th District. He first gained notoriety for his improbable defeat of the powerful GOP incumbent Eric Cantor. Brat won’t face any Republicans in the primary, but two Democrats and a Whig Party member (yes, you read that right, the Whig Party) will appear in the June 12, 2018 primary. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Lean Republican.

 

Jeff Duncan, representing South Carolina’s 3rd District. He’s running for a fifth term. Two Democrats and a member of the American party will run in the June 12, 2018 primary. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

Matt Gaetz, representing Florida’s 1st District. He’s running for a second term. Two Democrats and two other Republicans will meet him in the August 28, 2018 primary. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

Paul A. Gosar, representing Arizona’s 4th District. He is running for a fifth term. Three Democrats and a Green Party member will run in the August 28, 2018 primary. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

Andy Harris, representing Maryland’s 1st District. He is seeking a fifth term. This is a crowded field. Six Democrats, including Allison Galbraith, two other Republicans, and a Libertarian have committed to the June 26, 2018 primary. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

See the OTYCD entry on Allison Galbraith:

https://onethingyoucando.com/2018/04/08/support-democrat-allison-galbraith-whos-running-for-a-house-seat-in-maryland/

 

 

Jody Hice, representing Georgia’s 10th District. He’s running for a third term. The May 22, 2018 primary includes three Democrats, two other Republicans, and an Independent. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

 

Todd Rokita, representing Indiana’s 4th District. He announced that he would run against Democratic incumbent Joe Donnelly for a Senate seat in 2018. Six Democrats and seven Republicans are in the May 8, 2018 primary. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

 

Claudia Tenney, representing New York’s 22nd District. She’s running for a second term. The June 26, 2018 primary will be sparse. Only Tenney and Democrat Anthony Brindisi will appear. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as a Toss-up.

 

 

Ted Yoho, representing Florida’s 3rd District. He’s running for a fourth term. Three Democrats will run in the August 28, 2018 primary. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

 

Read the April 18, 2018 letter that the GOP house members sent to Attorney General Jeff Sessions, FBI Director Christopher Wray, and John Huber, the U.S. attorney for the district of Utah:

Click to access 472EBC7D8F55C0F9E830D37CF96376A2.final-criminal-referral.pdf

 

 

Read April 2018 coverage on the letter from Business Insider and The Hill:

http://www.businessinsider.com/house-republicans-call-for-investigation-into-comey-clinton-doj-2018-4

http://thehill.com/homenews/house/383720-gop-lawmakers-demand-sessions-investigate-clinton-and-comey

 

 

Choose one of their Democratic challengers for your Core Four:

https://onethingyoucando.com/2018/04/08/choose-your-core-four-for-2018/

 

 

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!

 

 

Read a WaPo story that quotes House Rep Matt Gaetz saying that Robert Mueller must step down immediately (scroll down to item 7):

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2018/03/02/is-there-a-gop-conspiracy-to-discredit-the-trump-russia-investigation/?utm_term=.0bb60e325b95

 

 

Hear audio of New York GOP House Rep Claudia Tenney claiming ‘Many mass murderers” “end up being Democrats”:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/video/politics/rep-tenney-many-mass-murderers-are-democrats/2018/02/22/4631fc92-17e8-11e8-930c-45838ad0d77a_video.html?utm_term=.dafe2c6ac14d

 

 

See a March 16 2018 Washington Post piece on GOP lawmakers who are OK with the notion of prisoners earning a dollar a day:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2018/03/16/republican-congressmen-defend-1-a-day-wage-for-immigrant-detainees-who-work-in-private-prisons/?utm_term=.25cbe7245cb6

 

 

We at OTYCD relied on raw info from Ballotpedia in part to build this post. See the Ballotpedia home page:

 

 

 

 

 

 

Follow Ballotpedia on Twitter:

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Call Your MoCs to Complain, LOUDLY But POLITELY, About the Firing of FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe

Call your members of Congress to complain, LOUDLY but POLITELY, about the firing of FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe.

 

So, this bullshit went down late on Friday, March 16. McCabe was set to retire from the FBI, effective Sunday, March 18, 2018. But Attorney General Jeff Sessions rejected his appeal and ordered him fired on Friday, allegedly due to displaying a lack of candor under oath more than once. (Yes, it is rich that Jeff Sessions, of all people, is using that justification to fire McCabe, but there you are.)

 

The report on which Sessions based is ruling has not been released as of Saturday, March 17, 2018. He did not accuse McCabe of lying under oath, but it’s impossible to know the strength and merits of the charges without seeing this report.

 

See various articles from March 16 on the firing:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/fbis-andrew-mccabe-is-fired-a-little-more-than-24-hours-before-he-could-retire/2018/03/16/e055a22a-2895-11e8-bc72-077aa4dab9ef_story.html?utm_term=.7666f1ab047e

 

See also this Washington Post piece that details reasons why Trump wanted McCabe gone:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2018/03/16/why-trump-would-want-andrew-mccabe-to-be-fired/?utm_term=.89e7877f4527

 

 

Here also is McCabe’s full statement on the firing, printed in this Vox article:

https://www.vox.com/2018/3/16/17132418/andrew-mccabe-statement

 

 

Many, many, good, sharp tweets from good, sharp people followed.

 

But Celeste Pewter (who you should be following on Twitter at @Celeste_Pewter), put her finger on why the McCabe firing is bad in a series of tweets on Friday night, and pointed to one thing we can do, and should do, to push back:

 

 

This is petty, vindictive behavior. We need to be OUTRAGED at how this administration is treating him. Call your electeds. If we don’t respond, and continue to respond, this will continue to happen to others.

 

 

I’m serious, all. It’s easy to say: “Yep, the chaos continues.” But we need to draw a line in the sand. Incremental acceptance for this behavior, is not good for any of us. It’s not just about McCabe; it’s about the precedents being set by this administration.

 

 

Let me put this another way: McCabe might be fine, with inevitable book deals and making tours of media shows. But what about all of the other staffers who are fired for getting on the wrong side of this administration, without McCabe’s job or profile? This is about them too.

 

 

Eg. This story about State staffers being canned for disloyalty has been buried because of how bonkers this week has been, but what about staffers like this? Call. Your. Electeds. Now.

 

 

She included a link to this Washington Post story about folks at the State Department being marked for firing and pushed out for not being ‘loyal’ enough to Trump:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/powerpost/house-democrats-say-they-have-proof-state-dept-staff-was-pushed-out-over-disloyalty-to-trump/2018/03/15/16f8fe1a-2884-11e8-b79d-f3d931db7f68_story.html?utm_term=.76cfcabdc881

 

 

An addendum: If you don’t think McCabe’s firing is a petty PREMEDITATED move, I present Trump’s 12/23 tweet: As I said, call your reps. Or this will keep happening. Don’t just write this off as more drama for this week.

 

 

Here is the Trump tweet she referenced:

FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe is racing the clock to retire with full benefits. 90 days to go?!!!

 

 

So, that’s your task for Monday. Call your two Senators and your House rep and make it damn clear (politely, always politely) you protest the firing of McCabe and you want them to, too.

 

Here’s her suggested script:

 

 

We can’t stress this point enough. Humiliating as that was for McCabe, he has recourse, and ultimately, he will be fine.

 

We need to stick up for the anonymous cogs in the governmental system who are refusing to carry out illegal and outrageous orders from the Trump administration–the people who are too minor to attract seven-figure book deals and too obscure to command a following if they quit their jobs rather than do something wrong, or risk their pensions by refusing to do wrong.

 

In addition to following Pewter on Twitter (again, her handle is @Celeste_Pewter) you can support her in other ways.

 

After you call your MoCs, 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

 

 

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!

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Follow Legal Expert Renato Mariotti on Twitter And Support His Campaign To Be Illinois’s Attorney General (Update April 8, 2018)

This OTYCD entry originally posted in November 2017.

 

Update, April 8, 2018: Mariotti did not win the Democratic primary for the state attorney general post. We at One Thing You Can Do thank him for running.

 

Follow legal expert Renato Mariotti on Twitter, and support his campaign to serve as Illinois’s next attorney general. 

 

When something happens in Mueller’s Trump-Russia investigation, Mariotti, a formal federal prosecutor, tweets solid explanations that are blessedly light on jargon.

 

He’s quick on the draw, his takes make sense, and he’s careful to acknowledge when he’s forming an educated guess.

 

Since becoming a Twitter sage and a go-to legal expert for television shows, Mariotti has announced his candidacy for Illinois Attorney General. The election takes place in 2018. (Lisa Madigan, the Democratic incumbent, has decided not to run for a fifth term.) He faces six others in the Democratic primary. Please support his efforts.

 

 

See Mariotti’s campaign website:

https://renatomariotti.com

 

 

Follow him on Twitter:

@renato_mariotti

 

 

See his ‘Meet Renato’ page:

https://renatomariotti.com/meet-renato/

 

 

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 him on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/RenatoForIllinois

 

 

Donate to his campaign:

https://secure.ngpvan.com/jk0yN-dCJ02VmyJ4UFqu0w2

 

 

Read an October 2017 Politico piece on Mariotti declaring his candidacy:

https://www.politico.com/story/2017/10/27/renato-mariotti-illinois-attorney-general-244243

Candidates · Choose Your Core Four · Elections · Read, Educate Yourself, Prepare · Russian Scandal, Emoluments Clause · Save These Tools

See the Full List of Republican Members of the House Intelligence Committee, So You Can Vote Them Out In November

See the complete list of Republican members of the House Intelligence Committee so you can vote them out in November.

 

First, a recap. On Monday, March 12, 2018, the 13 majority members of the House Intelligence Committee, who are all Republican, voted to end the committee’s year-long investigation into possible links between Trump’s campaign and Russia. While they agreed that Russia tried to interfere with the 2016 presidential election, the committee claimed to find no evidence of collusion between Trump’s campaign and Russia.

 

The nine Democrats on the committee, led by Adam Schiff, decried the abrupt closure and began preparing a report that would reveal the many ways in which their Republican counterparts failed to do their jobs.

 

Closing the House Intel Committee investigation is bullshit, and the Dems are right to call out their GOP colleagues on this. The bullshit is so rank, in fact, that we at OTYCD have compiled a list of the 13 House Republicans–all of whose seats are up for grabs in 2018–and the Democrats who hope to win them.

 

 

 

Devin Nunes is the current chair of the House Intelligence Committee and represents California’s 22nd Congressional District. He belonged to the executive committee of Trump’s presidential transition team, and he’s been the lead instigator of pro-Trump shenanigans throughout the lifespan of the committee’s Trump-Russia investigation.

 

Nunes appears to be running for a ninth term. He won his 2016 election with 67.6 percent of the vote. As of mid-March 2018, he is not facing any Republican challengers in the June 5, 2018 primary, but California conducts “top-two” primaries, in which the top two vote-getters, regardless of party, advance to the general.

 

Six Democrats are running in the primary: Bobby Bliatout, Ricardo Franco, Mallory Kremer, B. John-Michael Williams, Paul Vargas, and Andrew Janz. An Independent and a member of the American Solidarity party are also running.

 

OYTCD has a post in the queue devoted to Janz, and we will add a link here once it posts. In the meantime, see his Ballotpedia page:

https://ballotpedia.org/Andrew_Janz

 

And see Andrew Janz’s campaign website:

https://www.andrewjanzforcongress.com

 

The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican. Ballotpedia also notes that Public Policy Polling conducted a survey in January 2018 that showed Nunes leading a generic Democrat by 50 points to 45 points.

 

 

 

Mike Conaway represents Texas’s 11th Congressional District, and has done so for six terms. He is running again in 2018. He was the committee member who announced the “no collusion” findings to the press.

 

Conaway won the Republican primary on March 6, 2018, and will face Democrat Jennie Lou Leeder in the fall. Both won their primaries with more than 82 percent of the vote. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

 

See Leeder’s Ballotpedia page:

https://ballotpedia.org/Jennie_Lou_Leeder

 

 

See Leeder’s campaign website:

http://jennielouleeder.com

 

 

 

Peter King represents New York’s 2nd Congressional District. He initially represented the Third District, first winning election in 1992, and was redistricted into the 2nd in 2012. He is running for re-election.

 

As of mid-March, King faces no Republican opposition in the June 26, 2018 primary. Four Democrats are running: DuWayne Gregory, John Rennhack, Liuba Grechen Shirley, and Kevin Thomas. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

 

 

Frank LoBiondo represents New Jersey’s 2nd Congressional District, and has done so since 1994. On November 7, 2017, he announced he would not run again, and cited the term limit on his House Intel Committee position as one of the reasons for retiring.

 

Four Democrats are running in the June 5, 2018 primary: Will Cunningham, Sean Thom, Jeff Van Drew, and Tanzie Youngblood. Seven Republicans are also running. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Lean Democrat.

 

 

 

Thomas Rooney represents Florida’s 17th District. On February 19, 2018, he announced he would not run again. He has served in the House of Representatives since 2008, initially in Florida’s 16th District.

 

The primary is relatively late, happening on August 28, 2018. Three Republicans are running as well as two Democrats: April Freeman and Bill Pollard. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

 

 

Ileana Ros-Lehtinen represents Florida’s 27th Congressional District. On April 30, 2017, she announced she would not run again. Her tenure in the House of Representatives dates back to 1988, when she stood for Florida’s 18th Congressional District. While she won re-election in 2016, the contest was closer than she might have liked–she earned 54.9 percent of the vote to her Democratic rival’s 45.1 percent.

 

Quite a scrum of candidates will appear in the August 28, 2018 primary. In addition to seven Republicans and two Independents, ten Democrats are running: Mary Barzee-Flores, Marvin Dunn, Ken Russell, Kristen Rosen Gonzalez, Jose Javier Rodriguez, Matt Haggman, David Richardson, Michael Hepburn, Mark Anthony Person, and Donna Shalala (yes, she is the same woman who served as Secretary of Health and Human Services under President Bill Clinton). The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Lean Democrat.

 

 

 

Michael Turner represents Ohio’s 10th Congressional District. He was first elected in 2002 to represent the state’s 3rd District; redistricting in 2012 placed him in the 10th District, and he won that election. He intends to run again in 2018. He won his previous race with 64.1 percent of the vote to his Democratic challenger’s 32.7 percent.

 

The primary takes place on May 8, 2018. Turner will face two Republican rivals. Three Democrats are running as well: Theresa Gasper, Michael Milisits, and Robert Klepinger, who ran against Turner in 2016. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

 

 

Brad Wenstrup represents Ohio’s 2nd Congressional District. He is running for a third term. No Republicans have committed to run against him in the May 8, 2018 primary, but there is an Independent. He won his 2016 race with 65 percent of the vote to his Democratic opponent’s 32.8 percent.

 

There are three Democrats competing for the party’s nod: Janet Everhard, Jill Schiller, and William Smith, who ran against Wenstrup in 2016. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

 

 

Chris Stewart represents Utah’s 2nd Congressional District. He is running for a third term. He faces one opponent in the June 26, 2018 primary. He won his 2016 race with 61.6 percent of the vote to his Democratic opponent’s 33.9 percent.

 

Also running are four Democrats: Shireen Ghorbani, Carol Surveyor, Misty Snow, and Randy Hopkins. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

 

 

Rick Crawford represents Arkansas’ 1st Congressional District. He is running for a fifth term. He won his 2016 race with 76.3 percent of the vote to Libertarian Mark West’s 23.7 percent. (There was no Democratic candidate in 2016.)

 

The primary takes place on May 22, 2018. Crawford faces no challengers there. One Democrat, Chintan Desai, is running. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

See Chintan Desai’s Ballotpedia page:

https://ballotpedia.org/Chintan_Desai

 

 

 

Elise Stefanik represents New York’s 21st Congressional District. She will run for a third term in the fall.

 

The primary takes place on June 26, 2018, and it is crowded. Stefanik faces two Republican challengers, and a Libertarian and an Independent are in the mix. A total of seven Democrats are running: Katie Wilson, Don Boyajian, Dylan Ratigan, Tedra Cobb, Patrick Nelson, David Mastrianni, and Emily Martz. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Solid Republican.

 

 

 

Will Hurd represents Texas’s 23rd Congressional District. He is running for a third term. He squeaked through in 2016, beating Democrat Pete Gallego with 48.3 percent of the vote to Gallego’s 47 percent. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as Lean Republican.

 

He handily defeated an opponent in the March 6, 2018 primary and is now waiting to learn which Democrat will be his opponent. The May 22 runoff will feature Gina Ortiz Jones against Rick Treviño.

 

See Ballotpedia’s page for Gina Ortiz Jones:

https://ballotpedia.org/Gina_Ortiz_Jones

 

See Ballotpedia’s page for Rick Treviño:

https://ballotpedia.org/Rick_Treviño

 

 

 

Trey Gowdy represents South Carolina’s 4th District. On January 31, 2018, he announced that he would not seek re-election to a fifth term.

 

Five Democrats will run in the June 12, 2018 primary: Chris Chastain, Eric Graben, J.T. Davis, Will Morin, and Lee Turner. Nine Republicans are running also. The Cook Political Report rates South Carolina’s 4th District as Solid Republican.

 

Since the House Intelligence Committee’s vote to shut down its Trump-Russia investigation (and remember, Gowdy voted to close it), he spoke against one of its findings, saying that Russia didn’t want to see Hillary Clinton elected and “motivated in whole or in part by a desire to harm her candidacy or undermine her Presidency had she prevailed.”

 

Gowdy also made public statements defending Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller when Trump began attacking him on Twitter in mid-March. During a March 18, 2018 appearance on Fox News Sunday, he said: “When you are innocent … act like it,” as well as, “If you’ve done nothing wrong, you should want the investigation to be as fulsome and thorough as possible.”

 

 

Add Democratic challengers to your Core Four:

https://onethingyoucando.com/2017/12/22/choose-your-fabulous-four-for-2018/

 

 

We at OTYCD relied on raw info from Ballotpedia to build this post. See the Ballotpedia home page:

https://ballotpedia.org/Main_Page

 

 

Donate to Ballotpedia ($18 corresponds to the cost of a single article):

https://ballotpedia.org/Ballotpedia:Donate

 

 

Like Ballotpedia on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/Ballotpedia?ref=br_tf

 

 

Follow Ballotpedia on Twitter:

@ballotpedia

 

 

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!

 

 

Read about the House Intelligence Committee’s abrupt closure of its investigation into the Trump-Russia scandal, over the objections of the committee’s nine minority Democratic members:

https://www.vox.com/2018/3/12/17111492/trump-russia-collusion-probe-house-intel-committee

 

 

Read a Politico piece on Gowdy’s break from the findings of the House Intelligence Committee’s final Trump-Russia report:

https://www.politico.com/story/2018/03/13/gowdy-russia-undermine-clinton-republicans-461612

 

 

Read another Politico piece on Gowdy pushing back in public on Trump’s mid-March Twitter attacks on Special Counsel Robert Mueller:

https://www.politico.com/story/2018/03/18/gowdy-trump-mueller-probe-469910

 

 

Read a Miami Herald piece about Donna Shalala’s interest in running for a Florida House of Representatives seat:

http://www.miamiherald.com/news/politics-government/article200085999.html

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 Push Trump to Enforce Sanctions on Russia, Dammit, March 21, 2018 ‘Close But No Cigar’ 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 sign 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.

 

I have decided that until we get real movement on this front, I am going to devote one OTYCD weekday post per week to the issue. I may designate Thursday as the day for that–not sure. But this can’t be allowed to slide off the radar.

 

This is the entry for March 21, 2018.

 

We’re calling this the ‘Close, but no cigar’ edition because shock horror! The Trump administration actually imposed a form of sanctions on Russia! It did not enforce the law that Congress signed, but it did do something, and that something gave credence to the work that Robert Mueller is doing with his probe.

 

Specifically, the administration came out on Thursday, March 15, 2018, and accused Russia of trying to hack critical American infrastructure–nuclear plants, the electrical grid, factories, etc–and it imposed sanctions on the 13 Russian individuals who Mueller indicted in February 2018, plus six others not implicated by Mueller.

 

Read an AP story about the move:

https://apnews.com/2964ce37e2084ae5b4c13da748b35cff?utm_campaign=SocialFlow&utm_source=Twitter&utm_medium=AP

 

So… partial yay? This is good, but it’s not what we’re asking for.

 

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.

 

 

Below is material from those 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.

Action Alerts · Call Your Members of Congress · Russian Scandal, Emoluments Clause

Call Your House Rep to Complain About the GOP Members of the Intelligence Committee Shutting Down Its Trump-Russia Investigation; Call Your Senators to Support Its Intelligence Committee; Plus a Cameo Appearance by Conor Lamb

Call your House Rep to complain about the GOP members of the House Intelligence Committee trying to shut down its investigation of the Trump-Russia scandal; call your Senators to voice support for the Senate Intelligence Committee’s Trump-Russia investigation; and boost Pennsylvania Democratic House candidate Conor Lamb however you can–that special election is today.

 

Sorry to send this relatively late for a weekday post, and sorry it’s technically more than one thing.

 

Yesterday–March 12, 2018–the Republican members of the Intelligence Committee in the House of Representatives voted to shut down its Trump-Russia investigation, claiming to find no collusion. They did this over the objections of the Democratic members of the committee.

 

At least one Republican member, Florida rep Tom Rooney, stated that Russia was trying to mess with our elections, but wasn’t necessarily trying to help Trump when they did so. The Republicans were able to do this because they hold the majority in the House. They claim they will deliver a report to their Democratic members today.

 

Read about the shutdown:

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-politics/trump-russia-investigation-house-intelligence-committee-shuts-down-interviews-latest-a8252846.html

 

 

Read a statement from Democratic House Rep Adam Schiff, a member of the committee:

https://democrats-intelligence.house.gov/news/documentsingle.aspx?DocumentID=361

 

 

Read a Tampa Bay Times story about Florida House Rep Tom Rooney, a House Intelligence Committee member, who expressed the notion that Russia did try to infiltrate our elections, but not to specifically help Trump. (Rooney, who represents Florida’s 17th District, is retiring and will not run again):

http://www.tampabay.com/florida-politics/buzz/2018/03/12/we-have-gone-off-the-rails-rep-tom-rooney-says-as-house-gop-shuts-down-russia-probe/

 

 

To clarify some things: Only the House Intel investigation was stopped. The Senate is still continuing its probe of the matter, and Robert Mueller continues his work unaffected.

 

 

Also recall that the Republicans on the House Intel committee, and particularly its majority leader, Devin Nunes, have handled the investigation poorly, frustrating attempts to do a proper, credible job, and knuckling under to pressure from Trump and the White House. (Nunes was a member of the executive committee of president-elect Trump’s transition team.)

 

 

Step one for you: Call your House Rep and complain about the premature ending of that chamber’s Trump-Russia investigation.

 

 

Important note: Is your House Rep a member of the House Intelligence Committee? Then it’s extra-important for you to call.

 

 

Here’s the list of Republican members of the House Intelligence Committee:

https://intelligence.house.gov/about/hpsci-majority-members.htm

 

 

Here are the Democratic members of the House Intelligence Committee:

https://intelligence.house.gov/about/hpsci-minority-members.htm

 

 

Before you call, also check to see if your House Rep is running for another term in the fall, and tailor your comments accordingly.

 

 

If your rep is a Dem, thank them for their work and encourage them to be ready to restart on November 7, 2018. If your rep is running again in the fall, and you like their work and are capable of making an offer, say that you’re willing to volunteer for their campaign or donate a specific amount of money to it. Be ready to be transferred to the rep’s coordinator of volunteers and/or to someone who handles incoming donations.

 

 

If your rep is a Republican, firmly but politely state you are upset about the Republicans’ handling of the Trump-Russia investigation and its premature end. If your rep plans to run again in the fall, state that their actions have encouraged you to volunteer and donate to their opponent. Make sure to say the opponent’s name. If you gave that rival a specific amount of money as a direct result of the end of the Trump-Russia investigation, give that number as well. Make the consequences clear.

 

 

Sample script for Dems: “Dear House Rep (Lastname), I am (Firstname Lastname from town, state.) I am calling to express my anger over the premature ending of the House Intelligence Committee’s investigation of the Trump-Russia scandal. While I am glad that the Democrats have tried to do the right thing, I am disappointed by the Republicans’ foot-dragging and their general attempts to sandbag the whole thing. I ask you to be ready to reopen the investigation on November 7, 2018, and be ready to do the work that your Republican colleagues would not. [If your rep is an Intel Committee member and you are comfortable offering to donate money or time to the rep’s campaign, say so now.] Thank you.”

 

Sample script for Republicans: “Dear House Rep (Lastname), I am (Firstname Lastname from town, state.) I am calling to express my anger over the premature ending of the House Intelligence Committee’s investigation of the Trump-Russia scandal. Your party colleagues have done an unconscionably bad job here. You should not have tolerated such a mishandling of an important task, and our country might well suffer for it. [If your rep is an Intel Committee member and you are comfortable saying you will donate time and money to their opponent over this, say so, and name the opponent.] I expected better from you, frankly. Please do better going forward.”

 

 

After you’ve called your House Rep, call your Senators and express your support for continuing that chamber’s investigation into the Trump-Russia scandal.

 

 

Before you call, see if either of your Senators are on the Senate Intelligence Committee. If they are, then it’s extra-important for you to call.

 

 

See the Senate Intelligence Committee members here:

https://www.intelligence.senate.gov/about/committee-members-115th-congress-2017-2018

 

Sample script for your Senators, regardless of party: “Dear Senator (Lastname), I am (Firstname Lastname from town, state.) I am calling to express support for the Senate Intelligence Committee’s investigation of the Trump-Russia scandal. I am troubled by the way that the Republican members of the counterpart committee in the House of Representatives handled the investigation and extra-troubled by the way they ended it yesterday. I encourage you and your colleagues to do a proper, level-headed, fair, bipartisan probe of the matter. Thank you.”

 

 

And once you’ve taken care of that, see if you can give one last boost to Conor Lamb, the Democratic candidate for the special election for the open House of Representatives seat in Pennsylvania’s 18th District.

 

At this point, even if Lamb loses, we win, because Trump carried the district by 22 points in 2016, and things are close enough that Lamb’s Republican opponent, Rick Saccone, has needed Trump’s help to try to carry him over the line. It should not be this close, but it is. Regardless, do what you can, however small, to help Lamb defeat Saccone.

 

 

See the OTYCD post on Conor Lamb, which contains background, his Twitter handle (following him helps), donation links, and more:

 

https://onethingyoucando.com/2018/03/11/support-conor-lambs-run-for-a-pennsylvania-house-seat-in-a-march-2018-special-election/

 

 

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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, March 12, 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 sign 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.

 

I have decided that until we get real movement on this front, I am going to devote one OTYCD weekday post per week to the issue. I may designate Thursday as the day for that–not sure. But this can’t be allowed to slide off the radar.

 

This is the entry for March 12, 2018.

 

 

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.

 

 

Below is material from those 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.

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, March 8, 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 sign 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.

 

I have decided that until we get real movement on this front, I am going to devote one OTYCD weekday post per week to the issue. I may designate Thursday as the day for that–not sure. But this can’t be allowed to slide off the radar.

 

This is the entry for March 8, 2018.

 

 

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.

 

 

Below is material from those 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.