Happy New Year!
Happy Tuesday, Activists! Welcome back to action! We hope you all had a restful and happy holiday. We at Indivisible Philadelphia HQ took a break too but now we're busy making plans for victory in 2022. We’ll have plenty of options for you to take effective action soon. In the meantime, we need to keep the pressure on our legislators to pass the critical legislation we’ve been pushing for. We have three items for the beginning of this week – making those calls, commemorating the January 6 attack, and catching up on redistricting. But first, sign up for our meeting with Attorney General Josh Shapiro. He's running for governor this year and holding this seat is key to maintaining a functioning democracy right here at home.
OUR MEETING WITH A.G. JOSH SHAPIRO As you know, AG Shapiro is running for PA Governor this year. We’ll have a lot to ask him about why he’s running and his vision for the state. Bring your questions too! When: Monday, January 24, 7:30 pm Where: Zoom Sign up here.
MAKE THE CALLS DEMOCRACY, FILIBUSTER REFORM, AND BBB Now, on to democracy. Yesterday, Senator Schumer sent out another dear colleague letter stating that despite Republican obstruction, he is fully prepared to fight it out in the Senate for free and fair elections and will bring the filibuster to debate and a vote by January 17, Martin Luther King Jr. Day. All 50 Senate Democrats are in favor of the democracy reform legislation. It’s just that two of them – Manchin and Sinema – oppose changing the filibuster to get it passed with a simple majority vote. Sen. Schumer made this point: “this week Senate Democrats will make clear that what happened on Jan. 6 and the one-sided, partisan actions being taken by Republican-led state legislatures across the country are directly linked, and we can and must take strong action to stop this antidemocratic march.” In a somewhat hopeful sign, Sen. Manchin acknowledged that the Senate rules have changed in the past, and said that he is open to rules that make the Senate work better. As for Build Back Better, before the Senate went home, Manchin gave everyone quite the scare saying he was a “no” on Build Back Better (BBB). We're staying calm. Senator Manchin is known for this sort of posturing during negotiations. Apparently he is still engaged in negotiations on this bill too. So we need to keep up the pressure on our senators too. Here’s what to do: Sen. Casey – Phila office 215-405-9660; D.C. 202-224-6324; email link Sen. Toomey – Phila office 215-241-1090; D.C. 202-224-4254; email link For outside PA: Find your Senators’ phone numbers and emails at this link. Demand our senators fix the filibuster and move quickly to pass the Freedom to Vote Act. Call our senators and let them know you stand with Sen. Schumer, and you want them to adjust the filibuster to pass the Freedom to Vote Act ASAP. Demand our senators pass BBB as quickly as possible. Tell our senators how important it is that we pass an inclusive recovery bill ASAP.
JANUARY 6 - COMMEMORATIONS & VIGILS We are not sponsoring or organizing a vigil, but you can find one near you and here are a few in our area and online. 1. The Southeast PA Candlelight Vigil to Defend Democracy will be held along the length of Lancaster Ave, Route 30, across 5 counties: Philadelphia, Montgomery, Delaware, Chester, Lancaster. People can join the event any time between 4:30 and 7:30 pm. The peak time for assembly and media coverage is 6:00 pm. Find out more at the sign-up link. 2. The League of Women Voters' online panel discussion Defend Democracy will be held January 6, at 2:00 pm (the mob first entered the Capitol building at 2:12pm). It will feature the directors of Pennsylvania chapters of Common Cause, NAACP, PA Youth Vote, and LWV. Pre-register and submit questions here. 3. You can do your own “Vigil” while you work – simply stand for a full minute at 2:12 pm. You can take a video saying you are committed to vote in 2022 and post it on social media. 4. There are online events sponsored by various groups and here’s one by ProPublica at 3:00 pm on the 6th.
REDISTRICTING Two sets of maps are being drawn right now. 1. Our Congressional district maps are being drawn by the state legislature, subject to Governor Wolf’s veto if he disagrees with them. Then it would be up to the PA Supreme Court to rule on them or redraw them. 2. The state legislative (State House and Senate) maps are being drawn by the Legislative Reapportionment Commission, and you can submit comments by January 18 (see below). Go to the Fair Districts PA website to find out what is happening with both sets of maps, compare the proposed maps, and learn how to submit comments in the process. Submit comments to the Legislative Reapportionment Commission directly.