Well, that was quite a week, huh? Despite the ups and downs and craziness and worry, I came out of that week full of hope and ready to go!! Why, you might ask? Because 2020 is looking more and more like OUR year. And here are five GIANT reasons why:
1. More and More Dirt is Coming Out
This week brought an avalanche of dirt on the total maniac loser mentally deficient failed reality TV show host that currently occupies our oval office.
Will elected Republicans care? Not publicly (although privately they must hate this). But people will care. Think about it, if this mess moves even 1-2% of people over from voting from Republicans to voting for Democrats, WE WIN THE WHITE HOUSE AND THE SENATE AND MANY STATE OFFICES. So… BOOM!!!
Let’s take a closer look.
Americans who have been wondering why President Trump has taken the extraordinary step of trying to block every document from being released to Congress in his impeachment inquiry need wonder no longer. The new documents released Tuesday evening by the House Intelligence Committee were devastating to Trump’s continuing — if shifting — defense of his Ukraine extortion scandal… These new documents demolish at least three key defenses to which Trump and his allies have been clinging: that he was really fighting corruption when he pressured Ukraine on matters related to the Biden family; that Hunter Biden should be called as a witness at the Senate impeachment trial; and that there’s no need for a real, honest-to-goodness trial in the Senate.
and this dirt makes it hard for Senators to not have witnesses and keep face.
New from Sen. Susan Collins: "While I need to hear the case argued and the questions answered, I tend to believe having additional information would be helpful. It is likely that I would support a motion to call witnesses at that point in the trial just as I did in 1999."
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) January 16, 2020
Here is the bad part for them (and they deserve it): going against trump right now will lead to him going after THEM and them losing their support within the party. BUT siding with Trump will ALSO suck for them because:
The politics of impeachment are rapidly shifting, and not in Donald Trump’s or Republicans’ favor
All of this new information has led to increased pressure on Republicans. They must ensure that the Senate trial is seen as somewhat objective and that Republican senators are not perceived as sticking their heads in the sand to avoid acknowledging additional damning evidence against Trump.
Indeed, most Americans believe the Senate trial should include witnesses. Sixty-six percent believe John Bolton should testify, and 57 percent (including 40 percent of Republicans) believe the Senate should call more witnesses.
GOP Senators who believe in fairness and the rule of law and who do not blindly side with Trump (Mitt Romney (R-Utah), Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska)) and those who have tough re-election battles ahead in their swing states (Susan Collins (R-Maine), Cory Gardner (R-Colo.) and Thom Tillis (R-N.C.), have said they would be open to more witnesses and may vote to get them. Democrats need only four Republicans to side with them to force more witnesses to be called.
But if McConnell and his GOP colleagues in the Senate get their way and no witnesses are called, leading to a sham trial and subsequent Trump acquittal, the GOP will pay at the polls — both in the Senate and the White House
sounds like they may have the votes for witnesses. And if they do?
Once they’re out of office, officials who want to talk are shielded by the First Amendment.
We don’t dare guess about whether Bolton will testify, what he will say if he does, or what Trump will do in response. But we can confidently assert that — unless Bolton is willing to risk going to jail for Trump — executive privilege should not stand in the way of his testimony.
2. With Hard Work, We Will OWN November
LOTS of good news about our chances in November (if we all work hard):
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s decision not to run for the Senate has enlivened Kansas Democrats, who think they have a shot at flipping one of the few open Senate seats in the country this year — one that has been in Republican hands for more than a century.
Since Pompeo bowed out of the race, the leading Democratic contender, state Sen. Barbara Bollier, has announced that she raised more than $1 million in her first quarter in the contest, unprecedented for a Democratic Senate hopeful in Kansas.
63% would be unfavorable, while only 26% would be favorable. pic.twitter.com/dp6P5Lwsmc
— Geoff Garin (@geoffgarin) January 7, 2020
In January 2019, Jennifer Pritzker wrote an impassioned plea to her political party: She was a lifelong Republican, but the GOP was driving her away with messaging and policies targeting transgender people.
It had only been a few years since Pritzker, the world’s only known trans billionaire and a Republican megadonor, had chipped in a whopping $250,000 to President Donald Trump’s inaugural committee. But three months after publicly objecting to the GOP’s stance on trans issues, she gave $1,000 to Democrat Pete Buttigieg’s presidential campaign.
The Daily Beast tallied 15 such donors who collectively gave more than $700,000 to Trump’s inaugural committee but who have since contributed to the presidential campaigns of Democratic candidates, including Buttigieg, Joe Biden, Elizabeth Warren, Cory Booker, Tulsi Gabbard, Amy Klobuchar, Michael Bennet, John Hickenlooper, Eric Swalwell, and John Delaney.
With a 52% disapproval rating, Susan Collins is now the most unpopular senator in the country. https://t.co/9i1aXzJI8p
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) January 17, 2020
Texas Democrats, fueled by the party’s nearly quarter-century-held dream of turning Texas blue, are mounting an aggressive ground-game operation with the largest voter registration program in the state’s history, according to the state party, and an expansive voter protection effort ahead of the 2020 election.
The two-pronged campaign, which aims to add to the party’s 2018 gains up and down the ballot, will target unregistered voters who they believe are potential new Democrats, and safeguard the right to vote for Texans, in partnership with Fair Fight 2020, the multi-million dollar initiative launched by Stacey Abrams, a Georgia Democrat who considered a bid for president and the U.S. Senate last year.
Two years after catapulting to national fame and coming within 3 percentage points of unseating Republican Sen. Ted Cruz — and then failing to parlay the buzz from the campaign into a successful presidential bid — O’Rourke has shifted his attention to a more modest effort: going door to door on behalf of Democrats running for seats in the state House.
“I can’t think of a better use of my time,” O’Rourke said in an interview this month.
Eighteen progressive groups have signed a unity pledge vowing to keep their fire trained on the “corporate wing” of the Democratic Party amid a burgeoning feud between Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) that has split the left.
The signers include seven groups who back Sanders’s 2020 presidential bid and two that back Warren’s. The remaining nine groups are either supportive of both candidates, such as Democracy for America, or have not endorsed anyone yet.
3. Our Movement is Powerful
We put pressure on the BIGGEST financial institution n the world, which owns more fossil fuel stock than anyone else on earth and now….
BlackRock Chief Executive Larry Fink warned company boards to step up efforts to tackle climate change, a significant shift by the world’s top asset manager as it faces mounting concerns about its fossil fuel investments.
In his annual letter to CEOs posted on the company’s website on Tuesday, Fink forecast a “fundamental reshaping of finance” and said companies must act or face anger from investors over how unsustainable business practices might curb their future wealth.
Fink also said BlackRock would “be increasingly disposed” to cast critical proxy votes tied to sustainability, and said in a separate letter to clients that the firm will by mid-2020 sell off from its actively managed client portfolios stakes in companies that derive more than 25% of their revenues from thermal coal production.
Climate activists hailed Fink’s revamped stances and said they would put pressure on rivals
and our Protests Matter
From anti-war marches in the 1960s to the Tea Party rallies of 2010 and the almost nonstop progressive protests in 2018, marching in the streets has been a fixture of modern American life.
But do protests actually accomplish anything in terms of election results or the balance of party power?
Absolutely yes, according to a new study based on 30 years of data.
Co-authored by Sarah A. Soule at Stanford Graduate School of Business and Daniel Q. Gillion at University of Pennsylvania, the study finds that spikes in both liberal and conservative protest activity can increase or decrease a candidate’s vote by enough to change the final outcome.
What does it do?
On average, a wave of liberal protesting in a congressional district can increase a Democratic candidate’s vote share by 2% and reduce a GOP candidate’s share by 6%. A wave of conservative protests, like those by the Tea Party in 2010, will on average reduce the Democratic vote share by 2% and increase the Republican share by 6%.
On top of that, big protests by progressives have spurred increases in the quality of Democrats who decide to challenge incumbents. (Conservative protests haven’t had the same impact motivating Republican challengers, however.) That seems to be what has happened in 2018, when record numbers of women both marched in the streets and decided to run as Democrats for Congress, but the pattern isn’t unique to this year.
The study is based on a detailed analysis of both local protest activity and voting patterns in every congressional election from 1960 to 1990.
AND We Got Rid of This Guy…
A judge on Friday sentenced former Rep. Chris Collins (R-N.Y.), an early and staunch ally of President Donald Trump, to 26 months in prison after he pleaded guilty last September to conspiracy to commit securities fraud.
Collins, the first member of Congress to endorse Trump’s 2016 presidential bid, used his position as the largest shareholder in the Australian biotechnology company Innate Immunotherapeutics to illegally give other stockholders an inside tip that a test of the company’s main product had failed.
You might think “well that is the legal system.” Yes and no. As A WNYer I can tell you that this would not have happened without the amazing people who filed complaints against Collins and stood on street corners week after week after week in the rain and snow protesting against him. This was THEIR victory and they are heroes (You know who I am talking about STWNY friends!).
4. Our leaders are way smarter than theirs
Schumer on delaying the articles of impeachment: "Some of the Republicans are now beginning to say, 'maybe we need witnesses and documents.' Had Nancy sent the stuff right over and McConnell moved to dismiss, who knows what would have happened?" Via ABC pic.twitter.com/7rapD7NbCj
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) January 14, 2020
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) clearly failed in the stated aim of her four-week delay in sending impeachment articles to the Senate: to withhold the articles and the naming of impeachment managers until, as she put it last month, “we see the process that is set forth in the Senate.”But Pelosi’s delay seems to have blunted any hope President Trump’s defenders had of dismissing the charges without a trial. Before the speaker’s gambit, McConnell pledged that “there will be no difference between the president’s position and our position as to how to handle this.” Trump is now calling for a dismissal, but Senate Republicans say they won’t allow that.
— The Hill (@thehill) January 16, 2020
and this amazing move:
Attached is the first page of a five page letter in which the lawyer for @DevinNunes threatens that Rep Nunes will sue me.
Attached is my response. pic.twitter.com/bWAqdRhq97
— Ted Lieu (@tedlieu) January 17, 2020
Yes, Ted Lieu just told Devin Nunes’s lawyer to take his letter and shove it. LOL.
Lord, I love Ted Lieu.
And look what the DCCC and DSCC did:
BIG NEWS: After the @dccc, @dscc and @scdp filed a lawsuit, the state of South Carolina agreed to drop its requirement that voters provide their full Social Security number when registering to vote — it unconstitutionally suppressed registration and voter participation. pic.twitter.com/IzrreFxVw3
— Cheri Bustos (@CheriBustos) January 17, 2020
5. They are falling apart
White House counselor Kellyanne Conway was asked four times by Fox News on Thursday morning to “flat-out” refute claims from Rudy Giuliani associate Lev Parnas that President Donald Trump was fully “aware” of what he was up to in Ukraine. She didn’t give a straight answer once.
Y’all promise me that when this mess is over (and it will be) and she claims that she was always secretly on our side (and she will) that we shun the F out of that woman. No take-backs on evil.
Rs are not dealing well with this awful week:
Regardless of whether new post-House impeachment revelations are introduced in the Senate trial, the drip-drip-drip has created a lose-lose proposition for Republicans who face tough electoral crosswinds in 2020. They can defend the indefensible, or they can risk invoking the wrath of their president.
and his legal team is a sh*t show within a clown car →
Chris Wallace questioned the motives of some of those on President Trump‘s impeachment defense team, asking if it included “a bunch of people who each have their own axe to grind and their own ego to fill?”
Wallace, the anchor of “Fox News Sunday,” also questioned whether Pat Cipollone, the president’s counsel, would be happy with the rest of his team, which includes Harvard Law professor Alan Dershowitz and Ken Starr, the former independent counsel who investigated then-President Clinton.
“The chief counsel for the president, Pat Cipollone, is going to be leading the team. If I were he, I would not be particularly pleased with the team that that the president has assembled,” Wallace told Fox News anchor Sandra Smith
It’s a sh*t show, Chris! A clown car filled with criminals. A legal dumpster fire. Good of you to ask though!!!
and finally, as if he had much to lose to begin with…
Trump’s prayer event began with an inaccurate 2016 election map and ended with a rage-tweet
The White House spectacle exposed the toll impeachment is taking on the president.
An event at the White House Thursday meant to promote prayer in public schools indicated that President Donald Trump is struggling to deal with the strain of his impeachment trial.
As soon as Trump wrapped up his lengthy and factually incorrect harangue about impeachment, one of his handlers started screaming at reporters to exit the event. Moments later, Trump posted an all-caps rage-tweet that simultaneously mischaracterized his phone call with Zelensky and didn’t reflect a prayerful attitude
So that is why I am full of confidence.
Mostly though, it is because I know YOU will do the right thing and work your ass off for our victories in November. Here are some things you can do:
Make sure you do at least one thing a week to make us win in November. When you are used to that, make it two. Then three. Do it all until we win.
Here are some ideas of ways to donate your time from the comfort of your own home (click on the links):
- Get involved with Postcards to voters. Postcards to Voters are friendly, handwritten reminders from volunteers to targeted voters giving Democrats a winning edge in close, key races coast to coast.
- register voters in key battleground states. Vote Forward has active campaigns going in 8 key states to encourage under-represented (potential) voters to register. In 6 of them, the packet you send to each potential voter will include the actual voter registration forms and instructions with pre-paid postage for that state. The folks at Vote Forward have collected data on this technique and determined that it does, indeed, appear to increase voter registration.
- Contact the campaign of your favorite presidential candidate(s) and find out how to make phone calls to other states. You dial an 800 number once, and the computer will connect you to Democratic voters. No arguments necessary.
Here are some ways to get involved outside your house:
- Find volunteer opportunities at Vote Save America Every election matters, even the ones that aren’t as sexy as those Iowa caucuses. Rawr. (Too much? Maybe. But get out there and help right now!)
- Get involved with Stacey Abrams Fair Fight which is fighting voter suppression — and already helped us with two huge victories in the south!! Fair Fight is Fighting Back. Fair Fight built and engages a robust network of grassroots activists that works to strengthen democracy at all levels.
- Get involved with your local democratic party
- People who live in or near a state with strict voter ID requirements might wish to help by volunteering with Voteriders. They provide hands-on assistance with getting voter registration and ID, “including obtaining documents (such as birth certificates, change of name records) and arranging rides to and from ID-issuing offices.”
- Sign up to go door to door in your district It’s time we start talking with everybody about the progressive change our country needs. To do this effectively we’ll have to take the time to listen to voters who may not agree with us, but could be persuaded to our cause through civil conversations about what matters most in our lives. #KnockEveryDoor is a volunteer-led organization created in the wake of the disastrous 2016 election.
- Sign up to drive people to the polls Do you have a spare seat to help get somebody to the polls or voter I.D. office? Click the link to let Carpool Vote know when and where you’ll be driving, and they will match you with riders!
Here are some ideas for donating:
- Donate to a fund for Democratic candidates that run in the 2020 Senate elections This fund is devoted to the Democratic candidates that run in the 2020 Senate elections against Susan Collins in Maine, Cory Gardner in Colorado, Martha McSally in Arizona, Thom Tillis in North Carolina, Pat Roberts in Kansas, and David Perdue in Georgia.
- Donate to the Unify or Die fund for WHOMEVER our nominee will be 100% of your donation to the Unify or Die Fund will go to the eventual Democratic nominee for President, exactly when they need it most: right after the convention in July 2020, as they enter the general election.
- Donate to Swing Left Swing Left connects you with the most effective actions you can take to help Democrats defeat Trump and the GOP in 2020. Enter your zip code and find out what you can do, right now.
- Donate to the ACLU Donate to the ACLU today to help protect the rights and liberties of people across the country. Right now, they’re: Protecting free speech and the right to protest; Defending reproductive freedom; Fighting anti-LGBTQ discrimination; & Safeguarding the rights of refugees and immigrants.
I am so proud and so lucky to be in this with all of you!!
❤️ ✊ ❤️