Here's Where We Come In!
Happy Tuesday, Activists!
You might know that Joe Manchin has announced he is open to passing the For the People Act. He also shared some of his proposed changes to the bill, so now it’s effectively Manchin’s bill. Although his proposal leaves out some critical provisions, it’s still good news that he came to the negotiating table. You can read more here about what this means for the bill. And then, as if on cue, Chuck Schumer announced he would bring up S. 1 for a vote today!
We don’t expect it to pass today or any time before the Senate recess since we still have the filibuster to contend with. Today’s vote is on what’s called a “motion to proceed,” which would allow the Senate to actually consider the bill. If or when that vote fails, that only means the motion to proceed fails, not that the For the People Act failed. After that, what matters is that the Senate goes home to their states and sees a big, bold nationwide movement of visible public events to demand democracy reform, no excuses.
That’s where we come in. Below are the three actions for you to show our Senators that you demand democracy reform -- phone calls, next week's rally, and our new Constituent Comment Cards!
Also, come to tomorrow night's meeting and learn about allocating $1.4 billion in the city's upcoming budget!
$1.4 Billion for Philly -- Spending and the American Rescue Plan
Tomorrow, June 23, at 5:30 pm on Zoom Sign up here.
If you wonder how the city budget gets made, here's your chance to learn a lot about it. You might have attended our recent meeting in May with City Controller Rebecca Rhynhart, but if not you can watch the video. You'll see she talked about her upcoming report on budget allocations for the $1.4 billion the city is receiving from the American Rescue Plan. Now the report is out and you can read it here. It offers a different vision for how to spend this vast amount of funding, one based on research and ideas that have succeeded in other cities. We’ll hear from Rhynhart and Nick Hand, the leader of Rhynhart’s team that put together the report, who will tell us the theories behind their conclusions and how they believe the budget should be allocated. You'll learn learn about these ideas as an alternative to the plan currently proposed by the mayor and City Council. Bring your questions! SUPPORT THE FOR THE PEOPLE ACT
Next we have three chances for you to tell our Senators that you demand democracy reform and passage of the For The People Act.
First make phone calls today, tomorrow, and every day this week. This needs to be an all-out effort.
CALL YOUR SENATOR Sen. Toomey – Phila office 215-241-1090; D.C. 202-224-4254; email link Sen. Casey – Phila office 215-405-9660; D.C. 202-224-6324 email link. For outside PA: Find your Senators’ phone numbers and emails at this link. Here’s your script (use different parts of it each day – doesn’t need to be a long call): The Senate must pass the For The People Act – this summer. There’s no time to lose. Whatever it takes, Senate Democrats must come out now publicly and firmly that they insist that this democracy reform pass because it is essential to our country’s success. Manchin is not the king and Democrats need to put the right pressure on to make him realize this. We worked hard to get the Democratic Trifecta and now our senators need to do their hard work and get this done. Statements on Twitter are not enough – go on TV, to the press, wherever you’ll be heard, and tell the public (and Manchin) that you want and expect the bill to pass. Also, please tell President Biden to use his bully pulpit to put pressure on the holdout senators.
OUR JUNE 30 RALLY Let Freedom Ring - Rally To Save Democracy
Wednesday, June 30, 5:00 pm, Independence Mall, 5th and Market St.
As we detailed in our recent newsletter, there’s no time to waste to get the For The People Act (S.1) passed in the Senate. Elections experts advise that if the For the People Act is going to take effect in time to impact the 2022 elections, it needs to pass by this fall.
We know that Congress will only act on hard things if we force them to do it, and passing S.1 is hard. So right now, in this very moment of the legislative fight, we need drama, we need media attention, and we need wide-scale public pressure. And we need it right now – in the weeks leading up to the final showdown in July.
What our allies in the Senate tell us is simple: Our greatest chance for success in that moment will come if the Senate as a whole feels overwhelming public pressure to get this done. That's what this rally will do -- we'll make our voices heard publicly and with media coverage. So come out for an hour and do it! See you there.
CONSTITUENT COMMENT CARDS
We know you want to tell our Senators that you demand democracy reform and here's a way to do it directly and easily: Constituent Comment Cards! Check out the instructions below to fill out and email us two cards--one each for Senators Casey and Toomey. We'll print them all out and deliver them to the Senate offices--having a big stack of cards from their constituents can have a big impact. Get started by clicking the link on the Let Freedom Ring image here.
Click on the image above to download the Word document.
Open the document, which has one page to be filled out for each Senator.
Save the document. Fill it out with your comments and information.
Email it back to us at this link (or just reply to this email with it).
We’ll print it out and deliver them all to the offices with a cover letter.