Every one of us counts.

Let’s start today with a piece of hopeful news that you might have missed. An election in Wisconsin this week for a seat on the state Supreme Court was won handily by a circuit court judge named Rebecca Dallet, in the face of the efforts of Republican Governor Scott Walker and the whole GOP establishment.

Why is this notable? Because this was the first time in 23 years that a liberal candidate who wasn’t an incumbent won a seat on the state’s high court. As GOP Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell admitted today about Republican prospects in November’s midterms: “We know the wind is going to be in our face. We don’t know whether it’s going to be a Category 3, 4 or 5.”

Let’s make it a 5.


A FAIR COUNT FOR A FAIR COUNTRY


The U.S. Census can seem like a fairly uncontroversial topic — until you realize that the count of who’s present in America is used to determine congressional apportionment for the next decade, allocate federal funding for infrastructure, and serve as the basis for huge amounts of American research. And right now, the Trump administration is working to game the 2020 census to suppress the votes and voices of their constituents — even changing the process in attempts to undercount immigrants and minorities and avoid counting LGBTQ people entirely.

The census determines for the next ten years who we are and how our voices count.

WHAT YOU CAN DO RIGHT NOW

Call California Attorney General Xavier Becerra and voice your support for his decision to sue the Trump Administration over the plan to add a citizenship question to U.S. census-taking.

Call Senator Harris and thank her for co-sponsoring Senate bill S.2580: The Every Person Counts Act, which would remove the citizenship question from the census.

Call Senator Feinstein and ask her to co-sponsor Senate bill S.2580.

Call Nancy Pelosi and ask her to support a similar bill in the House of Representatives.


APRIL MEETING GUEST SPEAKER: JEFF SHEEHY


We hope you can attend our next monthly Stand Up SF meeting on Sunday, April 15, 2-4pm at the Noe Valley Library, where we’ll have a special guest speaker: San Francisco District 8 Supervisor Jeff Sheehy. He’ll be speaking to us about what resistance to the Trump agenda can look like on a local level. Be sure to register now so that we can save a seat for you!

Thank you for all that you do,
Paul


UPCOMING EVENTS


Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi Office Action
Monday, April 9, 3-4pm
90 7th Street Suite 2-800
San Francisco
REGISTER NOW

Brown Bag Lunch with Feinstein Staff
Friday, April 20, 12-1pm
Note new location: 301 Mission Street (lobby area)
San Francisco
REGISTER NOW

Tracy Grassroots Organizing (GO) Team
Saturday, April 21, 11am-4pm
902 N. Central Ave. Suite 201
Tracy
REGISTER NOW

– – – – – –

Stand Up SF April Meeting
Sun, April 15, 2-4pm
Noe Valley Library
Guest speaker: Supervisor Jeff Sheehy, SF District 8
REGISTER NOW

Putting the Pressure on Gunmakers

Like many of you, I was proud to join yesterday in the March For Our Lives protest in the heart of San Francisco. You’ve probably seen the coverage of the brave Parkland teens in Washington speaking up — and I can tell you that yesterday in San Francisco we were taught about conscience and the value of protecting lives, from those we thought it was our role to teach:

We join them in pledging to do all we can to keep our school and communities safe.

 


PUT PRESSURE ON GUNMAKERS RIGHT NOW


One of the most impressive — and historically effective — actions yesterday’s speakers emphasized was divestment from gun manufacturers.

Taking the financial power away has worked with apartheid. It has worked with oil. It will work with companies that create tools of mass slaughter. And you can do it right now.

Start with the nation’s major investment firms and demand that they use their shareholder strength to rein in gunmakers. Easy scripts and contact tools are at:

YouFundGuns.com 

Investments in gun manufacturers are often hidden in mutual funds. But that information is easy to find, if you look for it. In fact, one site offers easy analysis:

Goodbye Gun Stocks: Divestment Made Easy

Finally, make sure that you know whether you’re holding ownership in a particular gunmaker’s stock with this list:

Publicly Traded Firearm and Electronic Weapon Stocks

As appallingly immoral as it might sound, these companies make their decisions based not on their affect on human lives, but on the bottom line. We the people have the power to ensure that making it easy for people to kill is no longer financially viable.

Our future will be safer.

–Paul

Lives are more important than guns.

Our monthly meeting today featured a conversation with Ellen Ginsberg from Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America. We discussed the current state of gun legislation in America, and Ellen updated us on where we can best focus our activist energies to stop the scourge of American gun violence, notably by opposing the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Actand supporting legislation requiring universal background checks (supported by over 90% of Americans).


ONE THING YOU CAN DO RIGHT NOW


The National Rifle Association has for decades been an overtly political lobbying organization, buying their influence over politicians to promote the maximum profit on gun sales while jeopardizing dozens of lives every day due to gun violence.

As such, the NRA has no reasonable claim as a “tax-exempt social welfare organization.” So help strip them of this designation and hit the NRA where it lives: its pocketbook.

Revoke the NRA’s 501c4 Tax Exemption

File the IRS Complaint about the NRA

And while you’re at it, call Senators Feinstein and Harris and Leader Pelosi and thank them for supporting universal background checks for gun purchases.


GOOD NEWS


The national conversation about the Trump agenda is changing in our favor. Here are some stories you might have missed:

Maine House GOP candidate who insulted Parkland students drops out

Republicans warn Trump: Leave Mueller alone


FEEDBACK FROM YOU


Please take a moment and fill out our member survey, so that we can keep improving how we do what we do.


ACTIONS WITH OTHER GROUPS


Register now for next Saturday’s Rock the Congress event, a one-day conference providing Bay Area activists with the skills and training needed to flip seats blue.


UPCOMING EVENTS


Senator Kamala Harris Office Action
April 4, 3-4pm
333 Bush Street, Suite 3225
San Francisco
(Registration forthcoming)

Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi Office Action
Week of April 9
90 7th Street
Suite 2-800
San Francisco, CA 94103
(Registration forthcoming)

Brown Bag Lunch with Feinstein Staff
Friday, April 20, 2018, 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM
301 Mission Street (lobby area)
Note new location
REGISTER NOW

– – – – – –

Stand Up SF April Meeting
Sunday, April 15, 2pm – 4pm
Noe Valley Library

REGISTER NOW

Thanks for all that you do,
Paul

Focusing Our Work

I’m just coming out of our monthly all-group Stand Up SF meeting, impressed by the vigor, resolve and vision of our members. We discussed policy, group process and the national political landscape, and have emerged with a strong sense of direction that I’d like to share with you.
One of our members at today’s meeting referred to us as the “Citizens’ Conscience.” I couldn’t agree more.
Endorsement Decision
After a vigorous and thorough debate, the membership voted overwhelmingly to refrain from making candidate endorsements in 2018, favoring a renewed commitment of time and energy to our essential goals and activities: to resist the toxic Trump agenda by 1) expressing our constituent will to our elected representatives; and 2) working to take congressional majorities away from the Republican party in the 2018 midterm elections.
Tracy GO Team
Stand Up SF members Rachel, Kathleen and Troy participated this weekend in Swing Left’s GO Team in Tracy to help flip California’s 10th congressional district blue, and described the experience as gratifying, informative and effective. You can sign up for the next round below!
This week’s Stand Up SF actions:
Our members spoke eloquently and passionately today about the horrifying circumstance in the United States that an American terrorist can acquire a military assault rifle with no impediments, and proceed to take innocent lives — while Congress takes no action to protect lives.
  • Call Senator Feinstein and Senator Harris and encourage them to redouble their efforts to promote and pass the Assault Weapons Ban that Senator Feinstein introduced last November and that Senator Harris co-sponsored.
  • Call Senator Feinstein and Senator Harris and demand that they vocally oppose the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act that would would allow people who are granted a license to carry a concealed firearm in their own state to do so everywhere in the country. This bill has passed in the House, has 39 Senate co-sponsors, and needs to be stopped NOW.
  • Make plans to participate in and publicize the March 14 national walk-out to protest gun violence.
Actions with other groups:
 
UPCOMING EVENTS
Brown Bag Lunch with Feinstein staff
Friday, March 2
12pm – 1pm
560 Mission Street Plaza
REGISTER NOW
Tracy GO Team
Saturday, March 17
11:00 AM – 4:00 PM
902 N. Central Ave. Suite 201, Tracy
REGISTER NOW

Thanks for all that you do,
Paul

The Shutdown: What happened? What happens next?

I’d like to provide you with a few different viewpoints on the current budget/immigration standoff, in light of Democrats agreeing three days into the shutdown to approve a budget resolution. I’m seeing varying opinions from the blue side, and I don’t presume to know the future outcome of this conflict of basic social vales/chess match (take your pick).

Perspective #1:

Trump ended DACA unilaterally five months ago, and Republicans joined him in taking hostage the lives of tens of thousands of Americans who have done nothing wrong. They cannot be rewarded for this. Mitch McConnell famously goes back on this word, even to his fellow Republicans, and his vague assurances of bringing DREAM legislation to the floor cannot be trusted by anyone who has been paying attention. By caving on their pledge to stand against any further proceedings of the federal government without a clean DREAM Act, Senate Democrats sold out the most vulnerable amongst us and gave up their political leverage. And they did this while the breathtaking majority of Americans support protection for DREAMers. Morale has been undercut, and even the optics are self-destructive. The Democrats have demonstrated that when push comes to shove, they will not have the political courage to stand up for principles, and marginalized populations will again be thrown under the bus.

David Faris, THE WEEK

Leah Greenberg and Ezra Levin, INDIVISIBLE

Perspective #2:

This was the best possible outcome for the current budget standoff. Democrats gained an enormous benefit this round in re-authorization of Children’s Health Insurance Program for six years. The passage of a Clean DREAM Act becomes much more feasible when there’s actual legislation on the table, which now can happen. McConnell made an explicit promise on the Senate floor — if he goes back on it, he loses an enormous amount of political clout, which a canny politician like McConnell is unlikely to do. In the war on messaging, the Democrats were losing public opinion every day, so the optics and politics were only going to deteriorate at this point — putting red state Democratic seats in peril and undercutting the current midterm advantage. Democrats allowed the federal government to reopen for only 17 days, after which they can, and likely will, easily use this leverage again. And this time, the Democratic threat to shutdown the government over this issue has more teeth, because all now know that they are willing to go through with it.

Matt Fuller, HUFFINGTON POST

Yascha Mounk, SLATE

Perspective #3:

Whether this was surrender or a wise gambit depends on the outcome.

Ezra Klein, VOX

John Cassidy, THE NEW YORKER

On Friday there was a report from Politico that Senate Democrats have dropped DACA from the budget negotiations, but I want to note that there’s been no corroboration on this reporting from any other source.

I’d like also to point out that all three of our members of Congress, Senators Feinstein and Harris and Representative Pelosi, voted No on the continuing resolution because it did not contain a clean DREAM Act, and have pledged to continue to do so.

The continuing resolution that was passed funds the government through February 8, and an immigration deal is being negotiated this week — so now is the time for us as citizens to step up our messaging to our elected representatives stating clearly what priorities, values and deal-breakers we want them to embrace.

Paul