May 29, 2017 Newsletter

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Many thanks to HDCC Member Steven Gordon for the following guest post:

Ringling Brothers likely folded their tent this week because it could no longer compete with the ongoing circus that is Washington, DC. While the clown act was distracting us, the elephants were very busily stampeding over America’s healthcare.

In case you didn’t notice, thirteen white, male, Republican senators were meeting behind closed doors cobbling up their version of the AHCA  to be dropped, sight previously unseen, on the floor of the Senate.  No women! No Democrats! No daylight! Why? Because forewarned is forearmed. They want to sneak this one by us like a Pedro Martinez fastball. And they don’t want anyone else’s input.

Now the usual suspects will quickly respond that Obamacare (ACA) was “rammed” through Congress. This is an alternative fact. The ACA was subjected to more than 40 hearings and innumerable mark-up sessions. It took many months to get it to a vote.  It also contained quite a few Republican amendments. They will also misinform us about Congresswoman Pelosi’s quote, which was actually “But we have to pass the (health care) bill so that YOU can find out what’s in it”. Cong. Pelosi said that because of all the misinformation and outright lies that were being spread by those opposed to any health bill. The supporters knew what was in it and so did the detractors.

This legislation needs to be created in an open and diverse manner with input from everyone, including the public. If it eventually gets passed, it will be a Republican bill just surely as the ACA was a Democrat bill.  But, at least it will be done in a manner fitting of a functioning democracy.

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If you’re outraged about what the Senate is doing, check here for a way to fight back.

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For Further Reading

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HDCC News
The new website is live: www.haverhilldems.org — check it out. We’d love to have your ideas and input: what do you want to see on the website? Get involved!
The Young Democrats Outreach committee is getting up and running. Stay tuned for more information from this exciting committee soon.
 
New! Just today getting underway: an Immigration Task Force. Please contact Kathy Rurak ([email protected]) if you want to be involved.
There’s been so much enthusiasm for Saving Capitalism that the HDCC has decided to make a book discussion group a recurring event. Look for information on our next book and meeting date coming soon!
Also coming soon: Social Media training. Whether you have no idea what a tweet or a Like is, or if you just want to use your social media presence to further social justice causes, this training is for you. Beginners and old hands alike, look for more details about social media training coming to the HDCC this summer!
And don’t forget yoga — we need it now more than ever! Wednesday nights; 5:30-6:30  Giving Tree Yoga and Wellness, Yoga 4 HDCC  Sign up now: [email protected]
The HDCC has committees that could use your ideas, help, and energy. The Events Committee ([email protected]) has started the book discussion group and is planning the HDCC Annual Breakfast.
The Action Committee ([email protected]) puts out the newsletter, maintains the new HDCC website, and is planning outreach with other Democratic city committees. Events and Action are co-planning forums, so stay tuned for information on that.
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What Our Reps Are Up To
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National Action Items
Call, email, or send a postcard to your representatives! Be outraged! Phone numbers and other calling information below. Per Elizabeth Warren: send this list to red state friends!  Most of this week’s action items are taken directly from Indivisible’s Memorial Day Recess resources:
Massachusetts Action Items
  • Massachusetts Teachers Association and Raise Up Massachusetts
  • Join the fight for $15. There are several action items on this page: Fight for 15. well over half of Democrats in Congress joined together as co-sponsors of the Raise the Wage Act of 2017 . If the minimum wage had kept pace with workers’ productivity for the past 50 years, it would now be $21.36—instead it has remained stagnant at $7.25 for seven years and counting. Many cities and states have led the way with their own minimum wages—including several going to $15 per hour—bills, but still millions of Americans are left behind. A federal minimum wage of $15 an hour would mean $144 billion in higher wages for 41 million U.S. workers. More money in those pockets is good for the whole economy.
  • Please call or write your legislators asking them to support Paid Family and Medical Leave (un-amended) and $15/Hr. Minimum Wage for Massachusetts’s workers, plus the Fair Share Amendment.

In the state senate:

  • Fight for $15 Minimum Wage—S1004 (filed by Sen. Ken Donnelly)
  • Paid Family and Medical leave—S1048 (filed by Sen. Karen Spilka)
  • Fair Share Amendment – Amendment to MA State Constitution, a.k.a. “millionaire’s tax”

In the state house:

  • Fight for $15 minimum wage—H2365 (filed by Rep. Dan Donahue)
  • Paid Family and Medical Leave—H2172 (filed by Rep. Ken Gordon)
  • Fair Share Amendment – MA State Constitutional Amendment, a.k.a. millionaire’s tax

For more information:

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Coming Events
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Important links
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Want to get even more involved?
For action groups acting nationally, see www.haverhilldems.org/national-action-groups/.
For more action items, see  www.haverhilldems.org/actions-new/.
Here’s a sample script:
Hi, my name is Mark, I’m a constituent from Seattle, zip code 98***, I don’t need a response. I am opposed to banning the sale of blueberries and I encourage the Senator to please oppose implementation of any such ban. Thanks for your hard work answering the phones!
5 Calls makes calling your reps easier than speed dialing!