Letters to My Representatives: 9-13-17

Letters today are mostly the same as last week, excepting an inclusion for my senators to support SA 869, an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act that supports transgender troops, voicing opposition to Graham/Cassidy healthcare bill, and voicing opposition to DeVos’s dismantling Title IX. That last one was for my congressperson too.

Dear Senator Stabenow,

Thank you for publicly speaking out against Trump rescinding the DACA. It is morally reprehensible that he is punishing people who came here through no fault of their own and have made America their home. Please support Senator Graham’s and Senator Durbin’s Dream Act. Though I understand the rhetoric of pointing out how much Dreamers have contributed to this society, I do not feel that one’s humanity rests on the shoulders of their contributions or economic value. They are human. They are Americans despite what papers might say. They deserve the acknowledgement of their humanity and their deservedness to stay in this country based on the fact that it is morally the right thing to do.

Thank you for speaking out against Trump’s ban of transgender people in the military. There is no justification to revert back to the pre-2016 policy. There is academic research to counter the claims listed in Trump’s memo, including conclusive reporting that transgender officers do not impact unit cohesion. I understand the memo does not go into effect until March 23, 2018, but please take a strong stance against this now, especially in light of upcoming budget talks. Also, I understand Senators are debating the act this week; please support SA 869.

I ask that you issue a statement condemning the pardon of former Sheriff Joe Arpaio and to call for an investigation into the Arpaio pardoning. Standard practice for anyone seeking pardons is to wait five years after conviction and to demonstrate remorse/regret for their actions. The lack of either a sentence or demonstration of remorse was a contributing factor to the House 2001 investigation of the Marc Rich pardon: the same standard should be applied to the Joe Arpaio pardon. Please demonstrate that you will not go along with this blatantly political pardon. Do the right thing: challenge this decision.

I ask that you continue to pressure the Trump administration to seek diplomatic solutions with North Korea. What we need right now are strategic talks to help influence what steps North Korea might choose to take next. Inflamed rhetoric will only escalate the situation. I ask that you push the Trump administration to not undertake moves that will upset key allies in the region. The Trump administration has indicated that they will withdraw from the South Korean trade deal; to do so is shortsighted and will cause tensions with a key ally needed to address Kim Jung Un’s regime. Please consider long term strategy as opposed to short term moves.

Please reject the nomination of Sam Clovis to be the top scientist at the USDA. He is unqualified for the position, without any form of science background. We need someone who understands the needs of the farming industry, but will also help develop sound food-related policy for our nation. Mr. Clovis has a track record of divisive and racist rhetoric, which is not appropriate for a position at the highest levels. I expect you to do the right thing and vote against his nomination.

I ask that you reject the nomination of Jim Bridenstein to NASA. While Bridenstein obviously has an interest in space, he doesn’t have the scientific background previous administrators have. Additionally, Bridenstein has a proven track record as a climate change denier, which is counter to aspects of NASA’s mission. Please push for the administration to nominate someone who is qualified for the position.

I ask that you voice opposition to the Graham/Cassidy healthcare bill. I understand that there is no specific language yet, but several of the points that have been outlined/described by either Senator, are already items that I do not want you to support. I understand that the Senators have until 09/30 to do this. Please continue to emulate the efforts of the HELP committee, and  focus on stabilizing the marketplaces, instead.

Thank you for publicly condemning Trump’s comments on August 15th concerning the Charlottesville protests. The remarks were divisive, disgusting and full of hate rhetoric and tacit acknowledgment of the white supremacists who marched in Charlottesville. What Trump said are not the words of an elected official who claims to serve all Americans. I would like for you to go on record acknowledging that fact and call for a censure. I demand that you question the capacity of Trump to effectively serve.

Thank you for taking a stand against any attempts to unwind Title IX that would harm the current protections that are in place for sexual assault victims. I understand that there is significant discussion over the Dear Colleague letter; I want to be sure that no victims will be impacted as that discussion/public comment commences.

Thank you for your time, your consideration and your service to the people of Michigan.

Sincerely,

Jennifer Austin

 

Dear Representative Moolenaar,

I ask that you publicly speak out against Trump rescinding the DACA. It is morally reprehensible that he is punishing people who came here through no fault of their own and have made America their home. Please support Congressman Mike Coffman’s BRIDGE Act. Though I understand the rhetoric of pointing out how much Dreamers have contributed to this society, I do not feel that one’s humanity rests on the shoulders of their contributions or economic value. They are human. They are Americans despite what papers might say. They deserve the acknowledgement of their humanity and their deservedness to stay in this country based on the fact that it is morally the right thing to do.

I ask that you speak out against Trump’s ban of transgender people in the military. There is no justification to revert back to the pre-2016 policy. There is academic research to counter the claims listed in Trump’s memo, including conclusive reporting that transgender officers do not impact unit cohesion. I understand the memo does not go into effect until March 23, 2018, but please take a strong stance against this now, especially in light of upcoming budget talks.

I ask that you issue a statement condemning the pardon of former Sheriff Joe Arpaio and to call for an investigation into the Arpaio pardoning. Standard practice for anyone seeking pardons is to wait five years after conviction and to demonstrate remorse/regret for their actions. The lack of either a sentence or demonstration of remorse was a contributing factor to the House 2001 investigation of the Marc Rich pardon: the same standard should be applied to the Joe Arpaio pardon. Please demonstrate that you will not go along with this blatantly political pardon. Do the right thing: challenge this decision.

I ask that you continue to pressure the Trump administration to seek diplomatic solutions with North Korea. What we need right now are strategic talks to help influence what steps North Korea might choose to take next. Inflamed rhetoric will only escalate the situation. I ask that you push the Trump administration to not undertake moves that will upset key allies in the region. The Trump administration has indicated that they will withdraw from the South Korean trade deal; to do so is shortsighted and will cause tensions with a key ally needed to address Kim Jung Un’s regime. Please consider long term strategy as opposed to short term moves.

I ask that you publicly condemn Trump’s comments on August 15th concerning the Charlottesville protests. The remarks were divisive, disgusting and full of hate rhetoric and tacit acknowledgment of the white supremacists who marched in Charlottesville. What Trump said are not the words of an elected official who claims to serve all Americans. I would like for you to go on record acknowledging that fact and call for a censure. I demand that you question the capacity of Trump to effectively serve.

I expect you to take a stand against any attempts to unwind Title IX that would harm the current protections that are in place for sexual assault victims. I understand that there is significant discussion over the Dear Colleague letter; I want to be sure that no victims will be impacted as that discussion/public comment commences.

Thank you for your time, your consideration.

Sincerely,

Jennifer Austin

As always, feel free to use my words for your own letters. Much of this comes directly from ItsTimeToFight.weebly.com and be sure to visit for more scripts and information.

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Letters to My Representatives: 9-6-2017

I have failed to write my representatives for three weeks in a row and I am not happy about it! But I’m back. Sometimes life gets in the way and that’s okay. But we have to keep Resisting the best we can! Here are today’s letters. The first is to Senator Stabenow. Senator Peters got a copy of it as his stance is the same as hers. Representative John Moolenaar’s is the second letter.

Dear Senator Stabenow,

Thank you for publicly speaking out against Trump rescinding the DACA. It is morally reprehensible that he is punishing people who came here through no fault of their own and have made America their home. Please support Senator Graham’s and Senator Durbin’s Dream Act. Though I understand the rhetoric of pointing out how much Dreamers have contributed to this society and have been a positive contribution, I do not feel that one’s humanity rests on the shoulders of their contributions or economic value. They are human. They are Americans despite what papers might say. They deserve the acknowledgement of their humanity and their deservedness to stay in this country based on the fact that it is morally the right thing to do.

Thank you for speaking out against Trump’s ban of transgender people in the military. There is no justification to revert back to the pre-2016 policy. There is academic research to counter the claims listed in Trump’s memo, including conclusive reporting that transgender officers do not impact unit cohesion. I understand the memo does not go into effect until March 23, 2018, but please take a strong stance against this now, especially in light of upcoming budget talks.

I ask that you issue a statement condemning the pardon of former Sheriff Joe Arpaio and to call for an investigation into the Arpaio pardoning. Standard practice for anyone seeking pardons is to wait five years after conviction and to demonstrate remorse/regret for their actions. The lack of either a sentence or demonstration of remorse was a contributing factor to the House 2001 investigation of the Marc Rich pardon: the same standard should be applied to the Joe Arpaio pardon. Please demonstrate that you will not go along with this blatantly political pardon. Do the right thing: challenge this decision.

I ask that you continue to pressure the Trump administration to seek diplomatic solutions with North Korea. What we need right now are strategic talks to help influence what steps North Korea might choose to take next. Inflamed rhetoric will only escalate the situation. I ask that you push the Trump administration to not undertake moves that will upset key allies in the region. The Trump administration has indicated that they will withdraw from the South Korean trade deal; to do so is shortsighted and will cause tensions with a key ally needed to address Kim Jung Un’s regime. Please consider long term strategy as opposed to short term moves.

Please reject the nomination of Sam Clovis to be the top scientist at the USDA. He is unqualified for the position, without any form of science background. We need someone who understands the needs of the farming industry, but will also help develop sound food-related policy for our nation. Mr. Clovis has a track record of divisive and racist rhetoric, which is not appropriate for a position at the highest levels. I expect you to do the right thing and vote against his nomination.

I ask that you reject the nomination of Jim Bridenstein to NASA. While Bridenstein obviously has an interest in space, he doesn’t have the scientific background previous administrators have. Additionally, Bridenstein has a proven track record as a climate change denier, which is counter to aspects of NASA’s mission. Please push for the administration to nominate someone who is qualified for the position.

Thank you for publicly condemning Trump’s comments on August 15th concerning the Charlottesville protests. The remarks were divisive, disgusting and full of hate rhetoric and tacit acknowledgment of the white supremacists who marched in Charlottesville. What Trump said are not the words of an elected official who claims to serve all Americans. I would like for you to go on record acknowledging that fact and call for a censure. I demand that you question the capacity of Trump to effectively serve.

Thank you for your time, your consideration and your service to the people of Michigan.

Sincerely,

Jennifer Austin

 

Dear Representative Moolenaar,

I ask that you publicly speak out against Trump rescinding the DACA. It is morally reprehensible that he is punishing people who came here through no fault of their own and have made America their home. Please support Congressman Mike Coffman’s BRIDGE Act. Though I understand the rhetoric of pointing out how much Dreamers have contributed to this society and have been a positive contribution, I do not feel that one’s humanity rests on the shoulders of their contributions or economic value. They are human. They are Americans despite what papers might say. They deserve the acknowledgement of their humanity and their deservedness to stay in this country based on the fact that it is morally the right thing to do.

I ask that you speak out against Trump’s ban of transgender people in the military. There is no justification to revert back to the pre-2016 policy. There is academic research to counter the claims listed in Trump’s memo, including conclusive reporting that transgender officers do not impact unit cohesion. I understand the memo does not go into effect until March 23, 2018, but please take a strong stance against this now, especially in light of upcoming budget talks.

I ask that you issue a statement condemning the pardon of former Sheriff Joe Arpaio and to call for an investigation into the Arpaio pardoning. Standard practice for anyone seeking pardons is to wait five years after conviction and to demonstrate remorse/regret for their actions. The lack of either a sentence or demonstration of remorse was a contributing factor to the House 2001 investigation of the Marc Rich pardon: the same standard should be applied to the Joe Arpaio pardon. Please demonstrate that you will not go along with this blatantly political pardon. Do the right thing: challenge this decision.

I ask that you continue to pressure the Trump administration to seek diplomatic solutions with North Korea. What we need right now are strategic talks to help influence what steps North Korea might choose to take next. Inflamed rhetoric will only escalate the situation. I ask that you push the Trump administration to not undertake moves that will upset key allies in the region. The Trump administration has indicated that they will withdraw from the South Korean trade deal; to do so is shortsighted and will cause tensions with a key ally needed to address Kim Jung Un’s regime. Please consider long term strategy as opposed to short term moves.

I ask that you publicly condemn Trump’s comments on August 15th concerning the Charlottesville protests. The remarks were divisive, disgusting and full of hate rhetoric and tacit acknowledgment of the white supremacists who marched in Charlottesville. What Trump said are not the words of an elected official who claims to serve all Americans. I would like for you to go on record acknowledging that fact and call for a censure. I demand that you question the capacity of Trump to effectively serve.

Thank you for your time, your consideration.

Sincerely,

Jennifer Austin

As always, you are welcome to use my letters to send letters to your own representatives. Many of my words came from ItsTimeToFight.Weebly.com so head over there for more information and scripts. We have to stay loud and not give up hope. Keep calling and writing!

Letters to My Representatives 8-2-2017

Here are today’s letters. Senator Stabenow & Senator Peters received the same letter, and Rep. Moolenaar’s letter was similar, but instead of thanking him for fighting for the ACA, I reminded him that I will do all in my power to remind his constituents come 2018 election that he stood against the ACA and what that means for their insurance, and I omitted the paragraph about the Dream Act of 2017 because that is in the Senate, not the House.

Dear Senator Stabenow,

Thank you again for standing with the ACA and the American people in the fight to ensure healthcare for all its citizens.

I would like to express my concerns about the White House’s threats to cut off CSR payments for the month of August. These threats are destabilizing the markets and contributing to market uncertainty. I am asking that you make sure that CSR payments are fully funded. I recognize that this is a contentious issue given House vs Price but we cannot accept anymore market instability. I’ll be monitoring the office to see how they choose to handle this issue.

I would like to voice my strong objection, nay, my unmitigated disgust and anger, to Trump’s announcement barring transgender individuals from serving in the Armed Forces. This is bigotry and discrimination. Though Trump claims it is based on monetary issues and “strengthening” our military, he obviously has little understanding of the military budget, and of the strength and professionalism of our military. It is an insult to our people serving, to transgender people in particular, and to the American people. It is a bid to pacify certain segments of Trump’s supporters and not based on any factual evidence that Trump purports. I ask that you speak out against Trump’s decision and affirm to any of your LGBTQIA+ constituents that you respect their courage and their willingness to serve. And I ask that you do whatever you can to fight this decision.

I would like to voice my support for Senator Durbin and Graham’s Dream Act of 2017. I believe that we should help all under 18 young adults who were brought to the US and have fulfilled all the legal requirements instituted by the government, be put on the pathway to legal citizenship. Many of these young adults were brought to the US at a young age and have contributed academically and professionally to our country. I believe helping them achieve permanent and legal status as a citizen can only benefit our country. Please support this bill.

I ask you to speak out against the ongoing changes at the State Department, including the closure of the War Crimes office and the folding of the cyber office into another department. I ask that you go on record in addressing how these changes will impact our diplomatic capabilities globally. Your constituents need to hear you speak out against these measures.

I ask you to take a continued stand against the rollback of Net Neutrality. A change in rules would take away our freedom on the internet and negatively impact individuals and small businesses alike. Please stand against the FCC’s efforts to change Net Neutrality.

I ask that you pressure the White House to use all diplomatic measures possible to resolve issues with the DPRK.

I would also like to ask for the continued investigations into Trump, his son Don, his son-in-law Jared Kushner, and well quite frankly the whole crooked lot of them. Don Jr. admitted to collusion, Kushner has omitted important financial ties to Russian influence on his security clearance forms, and others have had meetings and ties to Russia, many of which originally lied about it. Please support the continued investigations, protest Trump’s every move to thwart them, and demand answers to the questions of Trump’s, his surrogates’, and his campaign’s ties to Russia and any collusion in the election.

Please speak out against Trump’s second secretive meeting with Putin at the G20 summit. We need total transparency from this suspect administration and this meeting is highly suspicious as there are no other American witnesses to confirm Trump’s statement on the meeting. It is also highly unusual and concerning considering the suspicion of collusion in the election.

I am livid over the White House’s continued blocking of reporters from recording or broadcasting the daily White House press briefings. Denying the American public the right to hear what is being discussed by our government is anti-transparency and not what a democratic government is supposed to do. Please speak out against and challenge the White House on this practice.

Thank you for your time.

Sincerely,

Jennifer Austin

Remember to visit It’s Time to Fight for scripts and information. And feel free to copy and paste my letter for your own letters to your reps! Keep Resisting!

Letters to My Representatives 7-26-2017

Here are today’s letters. I also called my Senators directly to thank them for standing with the ACA and fighting against any efforts to repeal it.

Dear Senator Stabenow,

As I said in my call earlier, thank you for standing with the ACA and pushing for fixing it’s problems not repeal as the Republicans are demanding. Please continue to fight and convince Republican colleagues that this is a dangerous bill (BCRA) that will damage the lives of millions,

I would also like to express my extreme concern at the Senate Republican’s attempts to thwart the normal rules of order in an effort to get this and other bills passed. I understand the parlimentarian ruled against a lot of the points of the bill, yet the Republicans do not seem concerned. They have broken the “rules” numerous times already and continue to breach standard procedure and long held norms. While this in itself is not always bad, it is apparent that they are damaging the very structure of our legislative democracy. Couple that with Trump’s repeated attempts to circumvent the Constitution and checks and balances put in place, leaves me wildly alarmed at the GOP behavior, motives and possible outcomes.

I would like to voice my support for Senator Durbin and Graham’s Dream Act of 2017. I believe that we should help all under 18 young adults who were brought to the US and have fulfilled all the legal requirements instituted by the government, be put on the pathway to legal citizenship. Many of these young adults were brought to the US at a young age and have contributed academically and professionally to our country. I believe helping them achieve permanent and legal status as a citizen can only benefit our country. Please support this bill.

I ask you to speak out against the ongoing changes at the State Department, including the closure of the War Crimes office and the folding of the cyber office into another department. I ask that you go on record in addressing how these changes will impact our diplomatic capabilities globally. Your constituents need to hear you speak out against these measures.

I ask you to take a continued stand against the rollback of Net Neutrality. A change in rules would take away our freedom on the internet and negatively impact individuals and small businesses alike. Please stand against the FCC’s efforts to change Net Neutrality.

I would also like to ask for the continued investigations into Trump, his son Don, his son-in-law Jared Kushner, and well quite frankly the whole crooked lot of them. Don Jr. admitted to collusion, Kushner has omitted important financial ties to Russian influence on his security clearance forms, and others have had meetings and ties to Russia, many of which originally lied about it. Please support the continued investigations, protest Trump’s every move to thwart them, and demand answers to the questions of Trump’s, his surrogates’, and his campaign’s ties to Russia and any collusion in the election.

Please speak out against Trump’s second secretive meeting with Putin at the G20 summit. We need total transparency from this suspect administration and this meeting is highly suspicious as there are no other American witnesses to confirm Trump’s statement on the meeting. It is also highly unusual and concerning considering the suspicion of collusion in the election.

I am livid over the White House’s continued blocking of reporters from recording or broadcasting the daily White House press briefings. Denying the American public the right to hear what is being discussed by our government is anti-transparency and not what a democratic government is supposed to do. Please speak out against and challenge the White House on this practice.

I am appalled at what happened at the Boy Scout Jamboree in West Virginia. Please speak out against Trump’s inappropriate use of his platform and the sinister attempted indoctrination of children. This is reminiscent of Hitler Youth and we should all be concerned about the direction in which this man is leading our country.

Please speak out strongly against Trump’s intended ban of transgender people in the military. This is nothing more than an attempt to bolster support from his far right base in an effort to look strong and as if he is doing something to further their agenda. I am strongly against any attempt to discriminate against transgender people, or anyone for any reason. Please do not let this heinous attack go unanswered, nor those coming from a number of GOP Senators and Congresspeople.

Thank you for your time.

Sincerely,

Jennifer Austin

 

Dear Representative Moolenaar,

Here is your weekly reminder that I will work hard to inform all your constituents come 2018 what your vote for the AHCA will mean for their healthcare. While I’m sure you are confident that this measure will be good for America, all the evidence leads to the contrary opinion and I will take no pleasure in telling people why they have no insurance, substandard insurance, or insurance too expensive to purchase because of their pre-existing conditions, but I will do it. I will do everything I can to make sure voters know who to blame and help get them to the polls when you are up for re-election.

I do not support the House Budget Committee’s bill released July 17th. The proposal’s plan to cut Medicare and Social Security is unacceptable. Any proposal that has $200 billion cuts to entitlement programs would unduly damage the safety nets that many of our oldest and most vulnerable populations depend upon. Please do not vote in favor of this budget.

I support HR 3364.

I ask you to speak out against the ongoing changes at the State Department, including the closure of the War Crimes office and the folding of the cyber office into another department. I ask that you go on record in addressing how these changes will impact our diplomatic capabilities globally. Your constituents need to hear you speak out against these measures.

I ask you to take a continued stand against the rollback of Net Neutrality. A change in rules would take away our freedom on the internet and negatively impact individuals and small businesses alike. Please stand against the FCC’s efforts to change Net Neutrality.

I would also like to ask for the continued investigations into Trump, his son Don, his son-in-law Jared Kushner, and well quite frankly the whole crooked lot of them. Don Jr. admitted to collusion, Kushner has omitted important financial ties to Russian influence on his security clearance forms, and others have had meetings and ties to Russia, many of whom originally lied about it. Please support the continued investigations, protest Trump’s every move to thwart them, and demand answers to the questions of Trump’s, his surrogates’, and his campaign’s ties to Russia and any collusion in the election.

Please speak out against Trump’s second secretive meeting with Putin at the G20 summit. We need total transparency from this suspect administration and this meeting is highly suspicious as there are no other American witnesses to confirm Trump’s statement on the meeting. It is also highly unusual and concerning considering the suspicion of collusion in the election.

I am livid over the White House’s continued blocking of reporters from recording or broadcasting the daily White House press briefings. Denying the American public the right to hear what is being discussed by our government is anti-transparency and not what a democratic government is supposed to do. Please speak out against and challenge the White House on this practice.

I am appalled at what happened at the Boy Scout Jamboree in West Virginia. Please speak out against Trump’s inappropriate use of his platform and the sinister attempted indoctrination of children. This is reminiscent of Hitler Youth and we should all be concerned about the direction in which this man is leading our country.

Please speak out strongly against Trump’s intended ban of transgender people in the military. This is nothing more than an attempt to bolster support from his far right base in an effort to look strong and as if he is doing something to further their agenda. I am strongly against any attempt to discriminate against transgender people, or anyone for any reason. Please do not let this heinous attack go unanswered, nor those coming from a number of GOP Senators and Congresspeople.

Thank you for your time.

Sincerely,

Jennifer Austin

For more information and scripts, visit It’s Time to Fight. Keep calling your Senators. Though the GOP won the vote to proceed with debate and hearings on the BCRA, the fight isn’t over. Call your Senators every day. Especially if they are Republicans!

Letters to My Representatives 7-19-2017

Here are today’s letters! Still trying to unpack all the moving boxes (and looking for ideas—writing-related ideas—for new blog posts) but I managed to find some time to write my reps.

Dear Representative Moolenaar,

I am writing today to let you know that I do not support the House Budget Committee Bill released Tuesday, July 17th. While I do recognize the need to balance the budget and reduce the Federal Deficit, I do not thinking raising military spending at the expense of needed programs for the disadvantaged is a viable solution. The proposal’s plan to cut Medicaid and Social Security is unacceptable. Any proposal that has $200 billion cuts to entitlement programs would unduly damage the safety nets that many of our oldest and most vulnerable populations depend on. I understand that the budget is being marked up today. If the budget reaches the House floor, please vote no.

Despite your letter to me regarding the Net Neutrality laws, I would still like to tell you that I am not in favor of rolling back Net Neutrality protections. Obviously you have already made up your mind, but it is just another item that should it go through (as it appears to be happening) and should there be consequences as many Democrats have warned against for individual people, small businesses, etc., I will be sure to remind your constituents come election time that you supported rolling back Net Neutrality protections and inhibiting and damaging their experience and accessibility to the internet.

I also ask that you use whatever resources are available to you to investigate Donald Trump Jr.’s meeting with Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya. Trump’s denials of the meeting and then lies about the purpose of the meeting – countered by the emails from Rod Goldstein – indicate collusion. This is something that must be taken seriously and investigated. Please push for the truth. It is time for Republicans to stop putting party before constituents and recognize and accept that the Trump Presidency is damaging to this country in so many ways. If you do not actively fight to preserve our Democracy, you will be remembered as one of the people who tried to destroy it.

I ask that you speak out against Trump’s decision to hold a second meeting with Vladimir Putin, without any members of the American delegation present. This is highly unusual and considering all that has been happening, alarmingly concerning as well as bad for the image of the presidency. Even though Trump is claiming that the meeting was innocent and standard, there is no way of confirming the veracity of this statement because no other Americans were present. Moreover, the lack of transparency involving this meeting continues a trend by the Trump administration to not publicly disclose meetings involving the Russians. I am alarmed by this repeatedly happening and I ask that you condemn this practice of secrecy by the administration.

I would also like to express my concern over the White House’s decision to continuously block reporters from recording or broadcasting the daily White House briefing. Denying the American public the right to hear what is being discussed by our government is anti-transparency and not what a democratic government is supposed to do. Please speak out against this practice and challenge the White House on this practice.

I would also like to express concern over Interior Secretary Zinke’s recommendation for the Bear’s Ear monument in Utah to be scaled back, and for Congress to step in management for some sections. The monument is considered sacred by many Nations and is home to 100,000 cultural and archaeological sites. Co-management or sepaating the sites – as proposed by Zinke – will not work. Please speak out against any attempts to scale back Bear’s Ear or any of the other 26 monuments.

Thank you for your time.

Sincerely,

Jennifer Austin

 

Dear Senator Stabenow,

Thank you for your continued support of the ACA, opposition to the BCRA & AHCA, and opposition to any attempts to repeal the ACA without replacement.

I would also like to ask that you continue to take a stand against the rollback of Net Neutrality. A change in rules would take away our freedom on the internet and negatively impact individuals and small businesses alike. Please stand up against the FCC’s efforts to change Net Neutrality.

I also ask that you use whatever resources are available to you to investigate Donald Trump Jr.’s meeting with Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya. Trump’s denials of the meeting and then lies about the purpose of the meeting – countered by the emails from Rod Goldstein – indicate collusion. This is something that must be taken seriously and investigated. Please push for the truth.

I ask that you speak out against Trump’s decision to hold a second meeting with Vladimir Putin, without any members of the American delegation present. This is highly unusual and considering all that has been happening, alarmingly concerning as well as bad for the image of the presidency. Even though Trump is claiming that the meeting was innocent and standard, there is no way of confirming the veracity of this statement because no other Americans were present. Moreover, the lack of transparency involving this meeting continues a trend by the Trump administration to not publicly disclose meetings involving the Russians. I am alarmed by this repeatedly happening and I ask that you condemn this practice of secrecy by the administration.

I would also like to express my concern over the White House’s decision to continuously block reporters from recording or broadcasting the daily White House briefing. Denying the American public the right to hear what is being discussed by our government is anti-transparency and not what a democratic government is supposed to do. Please speak out against this practice and challenge the White House on this practice.

I would also like to express concern over Interior Secretary Zinke’s recommendation for the Bear’s Ear monument in Utah to be scaled back, and for Congress to step in management for some sections. The monument is considered sacred by many Nations and is home to 100,000 cultural and archaeological sites. Co-management or separating the sites – as proposed by Zinke – will not work. Please speak out against any attempts to scale back Bear’s Ear or any of the other 26 monuments.

Thank you for your time.

Sincerely,

Jennifer Austin

Visit It’s Time to Fight for scripts and more info!

Letters to My Representatives 7-13-2017

So it’s been FOUR weeks since my last letter! I’m a little angry at myself (and disappointed), but between Sandler’s graduation party and moving, there just wasn’t time. Even now I’m sitting in the new house surrounded by boxes and eking out the time to write a few letters. So, before I go work on the new book, here’s my last letter to Representative Paul Mitchell:

Dear Representative Mitchell,

I’m sorry it’s been almost four weeks since my last letter. I’m sure you missed them. But due to my son graduating high school and a big move, I was unable to set aside the time to write to you. The good news for you, is that this will be my last letter to you. I am now living in the 4th District and will be represented by John Moolenaar. But I had a few last parting words.

I just want to remind you that I will make every effort to remind 10th District Constituents that you voted for the AHCA and what that will mean for their healthcare come the 2018 election. That’s of course not the only issue I will keep fresh in their minds as they contemplate who to vote for in 2018, but it is probably the biggest. And though I don’t know who your opponent will be, I’ll be sure to campaign for them as well. I realize that the GOP has a strong hold on the 10th District, and I don’t expect to break it, but I will do my part to make it more difficult for you or any other Republican to hold office. There was a time I thought that to be Republican was just a slightly different view on spending money, but now I know it is a drastically different view on who deserves to live and who doesn’t. So I’m just going to make sure your constituents know that.

Thank you for your time.

Sincerely,
Jennifer Austin

Here is my first letter to Representative John Moolenaar, Republican from the 4th District:

Dear Representative Moolenaar,

Hello. I am a new constituent. Until recently, Representative Paul Mitchell has had the pleasure of receiving my weekly emails. Now it’s your turn.

First, I’d like to talk about Net Neutrality. I am concerned about Chairman Pai’s recent announcement regarding his intention to change pre-existing net neutrality rules. I am asking for you to take a stand against this change.

Net neutrality helps ensure that there is an even playing ground for all consumers. Without net neutrality, telecom and cable companies could very well influence internet searches, news and how we access the internet as a whole. This would influence the ability for individuals to create and communicate openly and freely on the internet. Without net neutrality, telecom and cable companies could also negatively influence services, to their advantage.

Moreover, this uneven playing field would also disadvantage entrepreneurs. Small businesses wouldn’t necessarily have the financial clout of larger companies, to pay into this uneven playing field.

Please do whatever you can to help keep current rules in place.

I would also like to encourage you to use whatever resources you have available to investigate (or call for the investigation) into Donald Trump Jr.’s meeting with Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya. Trump’s denial of the meeting and then lies about the purpose of the meeting (countered by the email from Rod Goldstein) indicate collusion. This is something that must be taken seriously and investigated. Please push for the truth.

I would like to protest the Pentagon’s decision to delay the lifting of the ban for transgender individuals to enlist. Mattis’s decision harms the progress that we’ve made in the military and we shouldn’t go back. Please call on the Pentagon to lift the six month delay and lift the ban now.

I would also like to express my deepest concern over the White House’s decision to continuously block reporters from recording or broadcasting the daily White House press briefing. Denying the American public the right to hear what is being discussed by our government is anti-transparency and not what a democratic government is supposed to do. Please speak out on this practice and challenge the White House on this stance.

I would like to express my concern over Interior Secretary Zink’s recommendation for the Bear’s Ear monument in Utah to be scaled back and for Congress to step in management for some sections. The monument is considered sacred by many Nations (Native American Nations, if you were unsure about my use of the word Nations) and is also home to over 100,000 cultural and archaeological sites. Co-management or separating the sites (as proposed by Zink) simply will not work. Please speak out against any attempts to scale back Bear’s Ear, or any of the other 26 monuments.

Lastly, I want to express my support for a continued investigation, including a specialized commission, to investigate Donald Trump and all of his associates and their ties with Russia. The American people deserve to know if, how, when Trump and/or his associates colluded with Russian officials to win the 2016 election. A special prosecutor is a great start, but I want to see a full independent commission working on this.

Thank you for your time. You can definitely look forward to hearing from me next week, and since I missed a few weeks due to our move, I may just email you every day for awhile.

Oh, and I almost forgot! As I have told Representative Paul Mitchell repeatedly, I want to let you know that I will be sure to remind your constituents during the 2018 election that you voted for the AHCA and what that means for their healthcare. I wouldn’t want them to forget how you sold them out for petty vengeance against “Obama’s legacy” and towing the party line. Or that the Republicans have had 8-odd years to fix the problems with the ACA but would rather fritter people’s lives away rather than do something that’s good for the country if it means giving any credit to a Democrat.

Thank you.

Sincerely,
Jennifer Austin

As always, many of my words come from scripts written on It’s Time to Fight site. Please feel free to use my letter and/or visit It’s Time to Fight for more information. Good luck and keep Resisting!!

Letters to My Representatives 6-16-2017

I almost didn’t get my letter in this week. Between our upcoming move and a graduation party in 7 days, I’ve been scrambling for time. So I called my Senators on Tuesday (and I’ll call again in a few minutes) to ask them to vote NO on the AHCA, to demand public disclosure and hearings on the bill, and to fight against it with all they have. Here are some scripts from ItsTimetoFight.com to help you in your own calls:

I know it seems pointless to call, but really, it’s a few minutes out of your day. And here are some good reasons to call:

  • Democratic Senators use the call/email volumes to better argue against the bill; if we call, they can report those numbers to their GOP colleagues to help convince them to vote NO
  • Republican Senators who will vote YES still need to hear that we are displeased. They need to know they may be facing election loss if they do this.
  • Republican Senators who are undecided or on the fence NEED to know how their constituents feel about this issue. The more calls, the more likely we can sway them to vote NO.

Here is the letter I wrote to Representative Mitchell today. It doesn’t highlight any particular issues, but rather my crumbling view of the GOP. Will it do any good? Maybe not, but it is cathartic for me, so I guess there’s the good.

Dear Representative Mitchell,

I was prepared today to send you my usual weekly letter listing all the issues that concern me and how I want you to vote, respond or proceed on them, which you would then ignore and continue with your own party-line agenda. But I decided to go another route today and explain a few things to you.

First, I’d like to say that I have voted for Republicans before. I tend to lean left, but have generally remained centered, giving due consideration to both a conservative and liberal view point. I have even, on occasion, taken the conservative side of an issue. I do believe that both conservatives and liberals have something to add to the discussion and compromises can be reached on many issues to better serve all Americans.

I used to believe that the Republican Party stood for family values and tradition. I believed they upheld Christian ideals and that even though I didn’t agree with 90% of what they stood for, there was still something of value there.

I no longer believe this.

This isn’t a conclusion I have come to simply because of one election. It has been progressing over years and years, though I stubbornly hung onto the hope that there was something good and benevolent left in the GOP. That hope has since been dashed. The GOP, and this includes Trump, though he is by no means the sole perpetrator, have become the villains in American politics. I know you of course don’t see it that way, but I believe you have a very narrow view of what will help America. You are focused solely on what white middle class Christian America “needs” not seeing that by raising the lesser among us, we bring all of us up.

Between cuts to healthcare funding, repealing the ACA, imposing the heinous AHCA on us, proposed cuts to everything from Medicare to NEA to PBS. Pulling out of the Paris Accord, destroying climate change data, and proceeding with the DAPL, the GOP, and especially Trump, have created lasting damage to the fabric of our society that will take generations to correct, if we are able to. They have also demonstrated ignorance concerning matters of science and hypocrisy to Christian teachings. In fact, the blatant hypocrisy displayed has caused me to question my own beliefs, because how can I possibly belong to a religion that doesn’t understand nor follow the teachings of Jesus on such a large scale? It makes me sick.

And the fact that you have stood by and not said one word while Trump spoke dangerously on the campaign trail, inciting violence that continues to plague us, or done anything about the EO Travel Ban discriminating against Muslims, or condemned his inappropriate talk about multitudes of people from the Kahns to Comey to Mueller, or spoke out against his inappropriate remarks about women just goes to show that you wish to go down with his sinking ship. You neither have the moral fortitude nor the courage to denounce this dangerous man who is damaging our country. You didn’t speak out against him during the campaign, you have done nothing about him now, and history will remember those that fought against this degradation of America’s democratic system. They will not remember those who stood quietly by and allowed the erosion of our democracy. History will not remember you, sir.

Sincerely,
Jennifer Austin