Keeping Up the Pressure!
Updated: Jul 30
Happy Tuesday, Activists!
We hope you're having a wonderful week. We are so proud to be in this push for the For the People Act with you. After all, this is what democracy looks like!
We continue to worry, after his CNN town hall and other comments, that President Biden continues to miss the gravity of this moment. That means it's up to Senator Schumer to be the hero on voting rights and schedule the second vote on S.1, and get his caucus on board with a rules change so we can get it passed. We hope Schumer will shorten the upcoming August recess to get this work done in time to prevent rampant Republican gerrymandering during the redistricting process. Call our senators and tell them all of that this week (see below).
TODAY'S MEETING - 4:30 PM
This is your chance to learn everything about what’s been happening in this legislative term. Rep. Jordan Harris is the Minority Whip in the State House, so he’s in the know. We’ll ask him about the status of the Republicans’ nefarious plans to gerrymander, reduce voting rights in Pennsylvania, and other anti-democracy efforts. We’ll also ask about the process itself and what we can do to fight back against the forces that leave our state behind the curve.
When: TODAY, 4:30 pm
Where: Here is the Zoom link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/83197376769?pwd=WjQrbWNQazI3a3RHbE9nS3pvdDJaQT09 Meeting ID: 831 9737 6769 Passcode: 089519 Sign up here for updates.
CALL TO ACTION
This week's call to action is simple. It's our job at this point to keep up our pressure on our senators. Over the last few weeks over 350 actions around the country showed our senators - in public - our demand that they pass the For the People Act now. Plus remove or change the filibuster to do it. And you all did a lot of work for our local rallies and our Constituent Comment Cards. You are awesome!
Now, we need to continue to keep up the pressure. Make no mistake - it really matters. So please make the calls every day this week. They only take a couple of minutes.
Pro tip: Put Casey's and Toomey's phone numbers in your phone contact list and you can call whenever you think of it, easy peasy.
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 sections of it each day – doesn’t need to be a long message):
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. Senator Schumer must keep the Senate in session in August to get S.1 passed and reform or remove the filibuster.
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 NEW PROJECTS – 2022 IN OUR SIGHTS!
As we have discussed before, and described in some detail at one of our recent meetings, we need to boost Philadelphia voter turnout in next year's elections to win the open U.S. Senate seat and our governor’s seat. We can do it but we need to start now.
We have a three-pronged plan – (1) the Neighborhood Canvassing Project; (2) the 35 Doors Project; and (3) our new Postcard Project. Plus, of course, we are still doing all our “regular” events like voter registration, with more dates for that coming soon.
1. Neighborhood Canvassing – We will start up our successful canvassing program again soon when the weather cools off a bit.
Here’s how it works –
We will distribute the postcards to you or you can pick them up at a Center City location. The hand-written script is only two sentences and you’ll also write the address. We recommend you order enough cards to write over the next two months. The packet you receive will include the postcards and the list of addresses. We’ll email you all the instructions and the script. Please order your postcards in multiples of 50.
We ask that you donate $7.00 per set of 50 postcards to cover our costs. Even if that is too much in addition to the cost of the stamps, we want you to participate anyway. So please don’t let the donation stop you from ordering the postcard packets. On the other hand, if you can, please consider chipping in a little extra to cover the cost for those who cannot.
Here’s how to sign up –
1. Email us at this link to tell us how many postcards you want.
2. Purchase your 36-cent postcard stamps online at this link or at your local post office.
3. Donate $7.00 per set of 50 postcards at this link.
Here’s how to receive your postcards –
If you are in the Philadelphia area, we will deliver the postcard packets to you or you can pick them up. If you haven’t written postcards with us before, please give us your address.
If you are outside the Philadelphia area, we can ship the packet to you. Please add $5.00 to your donation for shipping costs.
Here's a tip from one of our postcard writers: You can write them with a friend in the park! Sounds good to us.
3. 35 Doors Project – In this exciting project you’ll be a Neighborhood Leader interacting with voters at 35 addresses in your neighborhood. It involves going to doors a few times per year and using the information we’ll provide about upcoming elections. You’ll be ready to be the local election expert after our training session and the information and handouts we’ll provide. We’ll also provide the addresses.
If you want more info or to sign up email us at this link!
TOMORROW -- Indivisible's Redistricting Hearing Training
This year, one of the greatest threats to democracy—gerrymandering—is once again taking center stage in the fight for fair representation. Join Indivisible on July 28th at 3pm ET for this one-hour webinar to become better informed and know the resources to find out how redistricting works in any state. Learn about the most effective ways to participate in the redistricting process including best practices for attending public hearings, participating in official online comment periods, and developing a community of interest. The webinar will be recorded. Register HERE.
We have an update from last week's announcement from Fair Districts, about the redistricting hearing coming up in Philadelphia next week.
Senate State Government Committee
August 4, Wednesday, 10 am. Southeast Regional Hearing:
[New Location] Temple University, Howard Gittis Student Ctr, room 200
HOWEVER, the agenda for this date is already filled and no new public in-person testimony will be accepted.
To request to testify in person at future hearings or to submit written testimony, contact Senator Argall’s office directly via his website.
November Election Facts
Election Day is November 2, 2021
Sign up for a Mail-in Ballot at this link.
Judicial Candidate Forum
On September 20 at 7:00 pm Pennsylvanians for Modern Courts and the Free Library of Philadelphia will host a virtual forum with the candidates for all of Pennsylvania's appellate courts, including the Supreme Court, Superior Court and Commonwealth Court. All of the candidates on the ballot will participate, and attendees will have the opportunity to submit questions for the candidates.
Thank you for all your work. Have a safe rest of your week!