***DAILY DO’S – TUESDAY 7AM EDITION***
Like many public-school kids, Congress has a recess this week. But instead of sleeping in late and playing too many video games, our senators and reps will use their break to meet with constituents at home. If you’ve been following the news, you probably already know that the Republicans in our state don’t have any town halls scheduled this week. Having watch their fellow reps fair poorly, they're scared that an unstructured format would leave them particularly vulnerable to criticism on their stance on issues ranging from the Affordable Care Act to the environment. Local groups across the state have already been pressuring for meetings. This week let's remind all of our reps, especially the Republicans, that they work for us and need to listen when we voice our concerns.
1. Check what your representative has planned for this week. There are a couple of ways to find that info. If you’re not following her or him on Facebook or Twitter, now’s the time to start. Indivisible members have also posted a number of official and unofficial events on our event’s page (click on the “event” link under the Facebook banner to find them). These will be particularly useful to people trying to get the attention of their Republican reps. Or you can always check out their official website. Have time to make an in-person event? Great! Share about your experience here or in the group discussions. This is your best chance to tell your elected officials face to face what you what them to know. Have an event you want to highlight? Post in the comments.
2.Support WA state Senate Candidate Manka Dhingra There's so much more we could do if Democrats held the state Senate. As it stands, there are currently 24 Democrats and 25 Republicans, but we have a special opportunity to turn this around! Last night I told you about the 31st district. But, the 45th district is also having a special election this November. The 45th, which voted overwhelming for Obama and Hillary Clinton, is running a wonderful new candidate: Manka Dhingra.
You don't need to be in the 45th district to help - donate a few bucks and/or volunteer to phone bank as the election comes closer.
Get involved here: http://www.electmanka.com/
Learn more about flipping Washington’s Senate blue: http://bit.ly/2m6Q3Bk
3. Support Family Planning On February 16, 2017, the House voted on HJR 43, which would overturn a Health and Human Services rule that prohibits banning of reputable health care providers from accessing Title X funds. Title X is the federal grant program that provides individuals with family planning services. Under the existing HHS rule, organizations like Planned Parenthood cannot be prevented from using Title X funds to provide women’s health care to low-income individuals. If HJR 43 passes, it will be far easier to allocate Title X funds based on ideological grounds, which will make birth control, abortion, and other reproductive services harder to access for low-income women. It is critical that we work to defeat this bill before it passes the Senate, in order to ensure that women of all income levels have access to the health care they need.
Please consider contacting pro-choice organizations such as Planned Parenthood (https://www.plannedparenthood.org/) and NARAL (https://www.naral.org) and offer them your time and make a donation if you’re able.
Defeating the bill is an uphill battle, considering the Senate’s current composition (52-46, with two independents who typically caucus with the Democrats), so please consider contacting Republican Senators who are sympathetic to reproductive rights, such as Lisa Murkowski of Alaska (https://www.murkowski.senate.gov/) and Susan Collins of Maine (https://www.collins.senate.gov/) and asking them to vote no on HJ 43. And be sure to tell Cantwell and Murray why you think it’s important for low-income women to access to reproductive services.
Katie Anthony is a writer, one of the administrators of Pantsuit Washington, and heads the Daily Do's team.
Liz Bander - writer
Angela Teater- Writer