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Representative Tipton

D3 Daily Action

D3 Daily Action

Tuesday's D3 Daily Action: Defend the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge from the latest drill scheme.

Its one of our great national treasures. 

For decades, we've fought back efforts by extractive energy industries to open it up to drilling. 

Egged on by the current administration, Congress is at it again. 

What's so special about ANWR?

Here's all you need to know

Well, ok. This too

Ok. So what now?

Just as they tried and failed to do in the 1990's, House Republicans are attempting to include an opening of ANWR to drilling in the federal budget. 

Let them know that -- no matter where we live -- all Americans value this treasure and others like it. Let them know we're tired of seeing our public lands turned into sacrifice zones for the benefit of antiquated dirty energy industries.

Two options:

1) Our friends at the Wilderness Society have a handy petition you can sign. 

2) Pick up the phone and call our Rep. Scott Tipton, let him know why you oppose the inclusion of Arctic National Wildlife Refuge drilling in the budget and -- while you're at it -- let him know he'd better not be voting for tax breaks for billionaires in the #TrumpTaxScam!

Alamosa               
719-587-5105

Durango      
970-259-1490

Grand Junction  
970-241-2499

Pueblo               
719-542-1073

Washington, DC
202-225-4761
 

Stay Wild America.

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D3 Daily Action

D3 Daily Action

Friday's D3 Daily Action: Tell 5 friends what happened yesterday. A massive theft of American wealth is coming.

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What happened in Congress yesterday is appalling, and we might all be paying the price for a generation.

Our Medicaid and Medicare cut by $1.5 TRILLION. Another $1 TRILLION in future federal cuts that remain unspecified. $1.5 TRILLION added to the deficit. 

All to justify and enable a boondoggle tax rebate for the top 1% that we're told will trickle down to all of us paying for these cuts. The President has claimed that "the rich will not be gaining at all with this plan" -- a statement that FactCheck.org rated as patently false. 

Yesterday, Congress narrowly advanced Trump's budget and laid the ground for a coming tax overhaul, with 20 Republicans breaking to vote against it. Said Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL): House Republicans "were asked to vote for a budget that nobody believes in so that we have the chance to vote for a tax bill that nobody's read." For more on the arcane rules that the House set in motion to allow the Senate to pass this massive change with just 51 votes, read here

Tell Me More?

For the internal party politics driving this colossal betrayal of working families, read on here. For the long view, and good links to share on social media, on who has benefited from past tax cuts and who is likely to benefit now, read on here and here.

We are facing an appalling theft of wealth from our country and working people, and polling shows that many voters know it

For more on what the budget will do to Colorado, see yesterday's post

This could backfire in time to be stopped. But regular Americans need to stand up. 

Get on social media and get on the street. Write your newspaper. Ask friends if they've heard about what happened. Ask neighbors how they feel about the programs we pay for being eviscerated just to give billionaires another break. Help people ask questions, be curious, investigate more, and reflect on what's happening in our country. 

...and Stay Strong America.

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D3 Daily Action

D3 Daily Action

Thursday's D3 Daily Action: CALL. Congress votes today on the Federal Budget Boondoggle.

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Now. Right Now. 

The House has scheduled a Thursday vote on the Trump Administration's federal budget. 

What would the budget do? And how does it relate to the plan to slash taxes for the very wealthy and raise them on the working poor? Read more below on the budget that has already passed out of the Senate. 

CALL CONGRESSMAN TIPTON ASAP and urge him to VOTE NO on this harmful boondoggle of a budget. And let him know how you feel on Facebook and Twitter

CALL REPRESENTATIVE SCOTT TIPTON
Alamosa: 719-587-5105
Durango: 970-259-1490
Grand Junction: 970-241-2499
Pueblo: 719-542-1073

What's in the Budget?

 
Here's how much Colorado families will suffer from the GOP's move to cut programs to pay for tax breaks for the most fortunate Americans and biggest corporations:

MEDICARE:
 
The Senate budget calls for nearly $500 billion in cuts to Medicare.
In Colorado, 785,398  people who rely on Medicare are at risk.
Medicare beneficiaries make up 14 percent of Colorado's  total population, including:
Seniors: 86 percent of Medicare beneficiaries in Colorado are seniors.
People with disabilities: 14 percent of Medicare beneficiaries in Colorado have a disability.
Women: 57 percent of Medicare beneficiaries in Colorado are women.
Hispanic communities: 12 percent of Medicare beneficiaries in Colorado are Hispanic.
Rural communities: Nearly one in four Medicare beneficiaries nationwide live in rural areas.
SOURCE:
KFF: Total Number of Medicare Beneficiaries
KFF: Distribution of Medicare Beneficiaries by Race/Ethnicity
KFF: Distribution of Medicare Beneficiaries by Eligibility Category
Medicare Payment Advisory Commission: Health care spending and the Medicare program
 
MEDICAID:
 
The Senate budget calls for more than $1 trillion in cuts to Medicaid – an even deeper cut than Republicans proposed in their health care repeal bills.
In Colorado 1,338,700 people who rely on Medicaid are at risk.
Medicaid beneficiaries make up 19 percent of Colorado's total population, including:
Adults: 1 in 7 nonelderly adults in Colorado.
Children: 2 in 5 children in Colorado.
Seniors: 3 in 5 nursing home residents in Colorado.
People with disabilities: 2 in 5 people with disabilities in Colorado.
Women: 52 percent of nonelderly Medicaid beneficiaries in Colorado are women.
Hispanic communities: 33 percent of nonelderly Medicaid beneficiaries in Colorado are Hispanic.
Black communities: 24 percent of nonelderly Medicaid beneficiaries in Colorado are black.
Rural communities: Medicaid covers one in four nonelderly rural residents nationwide.
Veterans: 41,000 veterans in Colorado rely on Medicaid services.
SOURCE: KFF: Medicaid State Fact Sheets
 
NUTRITION & INCOME SECURITY PROGRAMS:
 
The Senate budget calls for deep cuts to programs like the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly known as food stamps, and Social Security.
SNAP helps 476,000 of Colorado families and workers stay out of poverty and keep healthy food on the table.
74 percent of SNAP participants in Colorado are in families with children.
   48 percent of SNAP participants in Colorado are in working families.
25 percent of SNAP participants in Colorado are in families with members who are seniors or have a disability.
In 2016, SNAP benefits added $728 million to Colorado's economy, because families spend their SNAP benefits at local grocery stores and other retailers.
111,625 Coloradans rely on Social Security Disability Insurance, which workers pay into so they can support their families if they develop a severe disability.
SOURCE:
CBPP: SNAP State-by-State Fact Sheets
KFF: Total Disabled Social Security Disability Insurance
 
TAX CUTS FOR WEALTHY:
 
By passing the Senate budget, Republicans have cleared the first hurdle in moving forward to a vote on a tax bill that has been written in secret and few have seen. If the Republican tax plan were to pass:
The richest one percent of Colorado residents would receive 60 percent of the state’s total tax cuts in 2018. These households are projected to earn at least $637,800 next year and would see an average tax cut of $86,480 in 2018.
In stark contrast, middle-class Coloradans would only receive 7 percent of the state’s total tax cuts. These households would only get an average tax cut of $510 in 2018.
Millionaires alone would get 45.5 percent of the state’s total tax cuts. Their average tax cut would be 334 times the tax cut middle class families would get.
17 percent of Colorado households would face a tax hike if the GOP tax plan was in effect in 2018.
  
CUTS TO EDUCATION AND TRAINING: Nationwide, the Senate budget cuts close to $200 billion from services like Pell Grants and student loan assistance over the next decade.

Stay Strong America.

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D3 Daily Action

D3 Daily Action

Thursday's D3 Daily Action - Defend the Coolest Act You've Never Heard Of. 

So much more than antiquities.


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Passed in 1906 and signed by Teddy Roosevelt himself, the Antiquities Act has created some of America's greatest monuments.

And Colorado Congressmen Doug Lamborn and Scott Tipton are coming after it. 

The Antiquities Act gives U.S. Presidents the power to create national monuments from Federal lands to protect natural, culture, and scientific resources. It is responsible for the genesis of over 50% of the national parks in the U.S. and has been used over 100 times in its 111 years by presidents to create protected sites including:

Aztec Ruins, New Mexico // Bears Ears, Utah // Canyons of the Ancients, Colorado // Chimney Rock, Colorado // Devil's Tower, Wyoming // Dinosaur NationalMonument, Colorado // The Grand Canyon // Grand Staircase-Escalante, Utah // Mount St. Helens // Natural Bridges, Utah // Rainbow Bridge, Utah // Yucca House, Colorado // and more!

Why would anyone want to undo the Antiquities Act?

On Wednesday, the House Natural Resources Committee advanced legislation to undo the President's authority under the Act. Rep. Bishop's bill (with Colorado's Doug Lamborn as co-sponsor), H.R. 3990, would require full approval from counties, state legislators, governors, and abutting private landowners before a national monument greater than 85,000 acres may be declared. The creation of protected marine national monuments, as done by President Obama, is also significantly curtailed. While based on arguments for local control, Bishop's bill is part of the rising opposition to public lands and the environmental, cultural, and scientific protection they entail -- often to the chagrin of extractive industries in the West. 

Bishop's bill, H.R. 3990, gives presidents the authority to shrink existing national monuments. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke already wants Trump to shrink four national monuments ― Bears Ears and Grand Staircase Escalante in Utah, Gold Butte in Nevada and Cascade Siskiyou in California and Oregon ― and slash protections for these monuments and six others.

Says Randi Spivak of the Center for Biological Diversity: “There’s no public support for this kind of radical legislation. Bishop’s only motivation is greed. He’s offering a gift to the fossil fuel, mining and timber industries and expecting something in return.”

Do I have to call Congress again?

Until we can kick the bad guys out next year, yes!

Anti-public lands legislators are hoping the public isn't watching. Let them know we are. 

Passed Wednesday by the House Natural Resources Committee, the bill is set to continue its journey to a full floor vote. Please let the following representatives know that you are watching. 

Bonus mission: Call all three -- Tipton, Lamborn (co-sponsor), and Bishop (sponsor)!

[IF LEAVING A VOICEMAIL: please leave your full street address to ensure your call is tallied]

Sample Script: My name is [name] and I live in [town]. As a resident of the West Slope and as a [what do you do outdoors?] I urge Representative Tipton to stop supporting H.R. 3990, the National Monument Creation and Protection Act. This bill is a direct assault on my lifestyle, traditions, our economy, and our public lands heritage. This is a bad bill and I ask Representative Tipton to stand against this bill with his constituents. 

Our friends at Conservation Colorado have also created some useful talking points

CALL REPRESENTATIVE SCOTT TIPTON
Alamosa: 719-587-5105
Durango: 970-259-1490
Grand Junction: 970-241-2499
Pueblo: 719-542-1073
 

CALL REPRESENTATIVE DOUG LAMBORN
Washington, DC: (202) 225-4422
Colorado Springs: (719) 520-0055
 

CALL REPRESENTATIVE ROB BISHOP
Washington, DC: 202-225-0453
Ogden, UT: 801-625-0107

Stay Strong America!

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D3 Daily Action

D3 Daily Action

Wednesday's D3 Daily Action - End the Silence of the Dickey Amendment

Gun violence? What gun violence?


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You might think we know when, where, and how gun violence occurs in the U.S. 

You'd be wrong. 

In 1996, Congress passed the Dickey Amendment after the NRA was upset at federal studies that showed a clear link between gun violence and public health. 

The Dickey Amendment says "none of the funds made available for injury prevention and control at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention may be used to advocate or promote gun control.” It was passed to retaliate for unwanted CDC findings and -- alongside funding cuts to CDC gun research -- has operated as a choke-hold on US gun violence study and accountability every since. Systematic studies of violent offender warning signs? Analysis of access patterns to firearms before shootings? Inventories of gun homicides in most states? All victims of the Dickey Amendment. Even the Amendment author regrets ever having pushed it. 

For see, more John Oliver and a powerful history from the American Psychological Association

The political fear tactics of the NRA make it impossible to pass common-sense gun safety laws, and the NRA is working to make it impossible for the federal government to even study the issue.

Congress needs to feel the heat. 

[IF LEAVING A VOICEMAIL: please leave your full street address to ensure your call is tallied]

Sample script: 

I'm a constituent from __town__ calling to ask what you can do to prevent gun violence in our country. The Dickey Amendment was passed as an amendment to the 1996 Appropriations Bill and has denied the Center for Disease Control the ability to study how gun violence occurs and how to prevent it. I think we can all agree that allowing research on how people commit gun violence, warning signs to look for, and things we can do to stop them is something both parties can get behind. Please let me know where you stand on repealing the Dickey Amendment.

CALL REPRESENTATIVE SCOTT TIPTON
Alamosa: 719-587-5105
Durango: 970-259-1490
Grand Junction: 970-241-2499
Pueblo: 719-542-1073
Washington, DC: 202-225-4761

Stay Strong America!

 

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D3 Daily Action

D3 Daily Action

Tuesday's D3 Daily Action - Stand Up for the Clean Power Plan


Trump's appointment for EPA Administrator, Scott Pruitt, is moving to rewind the clock on climate action. 

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Pruitt has the Historic Clean Power Plan in His Sights.

On October 9th, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt announced that the agency will take steps to repeal the Clean Power Plan, an Obama-era policy aimed at reducing carbon emissions from power plants and combating climate change.

That's the same Scott Pruitt who made his name suing the very agency he now heads.

The Clean Power Plan is a set of policies and guidelines issued in 2015 under the Clean Air Act, the nation's longstanding air pollution law. The plan sets carbon emission targets for coal, gas and other power plants, and gives each state the ability to design their own methods to achieve them. If fully implemented, the Clean Power Plan is projected to cut carbon emissions by 32% nationally (relative to 2005 levels), save the US $20 billion in climate-related costs, and add $14-$34 billion in added health benefits. The shift toward clean renewable energy sources will also save the average American family money due to their overall lower cost.

Why was the Clean Power Plan such a historic breakthrough, and what do will be the cost of it's repeal? Learn more from the Union of Concerned Scientists. 

There is no question that increased carbon emissions have led to climate change and the rise of more and more floods, droughts, wildfires, and hurricanes that have put populations in the US and around the world in danger. It is irresponsible for the EPA to roll back policies that curb carbon emissions under false promises of reduced costs or a coal industry comeback.

While a repeal of the Clean Power Plan is not expected to be immediately implemented (it will go through a formal rule-making process and will also face lawsuits), Congress can take action now by supporting measures that uphold the strategies of the Clean Power Plan and voting down those that undermine it.

Congress has the power to do what's right. 

Sample script for a quick call to your Congressional office:

Hi, my name is [NAME] and I’m a constituent from _____. 

I'm calling to express my concern about the EPA's decision to repeal the Clean Power Plan. It is clear that carbon emissions have led to climate change and the increase of natural disasters devastating our country. I strongly urge Rep. Tipton to support measures that uphold the strategies of the Clean Power Plan and oppose those that undermine it.

<Speak about how climate change is effecting and will impact your community or things that are important to you..>

We can't deny the harms that Congressional inaction is allowing. Please do what's right for Colorado and my community and take action on this. 

Thank you for your time and attention.

[IF LEAVING A VOICEMAIL: please leave your full street address to ensure your call is tallied]

CALL REPRESENTATIVE SCOTT TIPTON
Alamosa: 719-587-5105
Durango: 970-259-1490
Grand Junction: 970-241-2499
Pueblo: 719-542-1073
Washington, DC: 202-225-4761

Stay Strong America!

 

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D3 Daily Action

D3 Daily Action

Friday's D3 Daily Action: Tell Tipton to Protect Our Public Lands

Time to raise a ruckus!

District 3's Representative Scott Tipton is working agains the wishes of the majority of his constituents. 

He supports 3 bills that wrench control of energy development from feds, classify finite resources as renewable, and incentivize development by letting states collect royalties. This terrible trifecta tears at the heart of our wild public lands.

TELL TIPTON TO VOTE NO ON HR3565

TELL TIPTON TO VOTE NO ON HR3565

TELL TIPTON TO ABANDON HR 2907

TELL TIPTON TO ABANDON HR 2907

TELL TIPTON TO VOTE NO ON HR 2661

TELL TIPTON TO VOTE NO ON HR 2661

CALL REPRESENTATIVE SCOTT TIPTON AND TELL HIM TO VOTE NO H.R. 3565 AND H.R. 2661, AND TO ABANDON HIS OWN H.R. 2907

Alamosa: 719-587-5105
Durango: 970-259-1490
Grand Junction: 970-241-2499
Pueblo: 719-542-1073
Washington, DC: 202-225-4761

  1. The Federal Land Freedom Act (H.R. 3565 in the House and S. 335 in the Senate) would allow states to “assume the federal leasing, permitting and regulatory responsibilities for oil and gas exploration, development, and production” on U.S. public lands. This is yet another ham-fisted attempt to circumvent protections for federal lands by transferring “oversight” to state governments. The Federal Land Freedom Act contains a number of troubling provisions, excluding these national lands from the Endangered Species Act, common sense look-before-you-lease environmental reviews, and protection of heritage resources. The bill hands over America’s publicly-owned mineral resources for massive oil and gas development. It’s a land seizure bill, but with even more dire consequences for taxpayers and wildlife.This is an outrageous attack on our public lands. It must be stopped in its tracks!
  2. Next up, the Planning for American Energy Act (H.R. 2907) reintroduced by Rep. Tipton, would require the Interior Secretary to pervert the concept of “sustained yield” — originally applied to renewable resources such as timber — and apply it instead to non-renewable resources such as oil, gas, coal, and even uranium.It would force the government to project energy needs and provide a plan that would have to include both renewable and nonrenewable energy sources, regardless of market forces. This would open the door of industry to lobby the Energy Information Administration to inflate those projected energy needs, and demand that fossil fuels be identified by the government as a required solution to meet those needs, regardless of the efficacy of clean energy sources like wind, solar, and hydro. It also prioritizes public lands as the first point of extraction of these resources, despite the multitude of other public lands values we hold dear. This bill is a thinly veiled attempt to skirt market forces and public opinion to force the adoption of fossil fuels behind a curtain of impenetrable bureaucracy. Tell Scott Tipton you DO NOT support this sneaky attempt to force dirty energy on the American people at the expense of our public lands.
  3. Finally, the State Mineral Revenue Protection Act (H.R. 2661) would require royalty payments from the extraction of resources owned by all U.S. citizens to be paid directly to the states where they are extracted. This sinister move would work hand in glove with the Federal Lands Freedom Act by incentivizing states to rubber stamp industry, granting industry unfettered access and rewarding that graft with royalties skimmed from the Treasury. 

This is not how our system was designed to work, and these bills are attempting to circumvent reasonable protections to our shared public lands. Time and again, Americans (and especially Westerners) have declared in favor of keeping public lands in public hands.

Please tell the misguided Scott Tipton that he is acting contrary to the wishes of his constituents.


Action courtesy of Wilderness Workshop

D3 Daily Action

D3 Daily Action

Wednesday's D3 Daily Action

Oppose a 10-year delay in enacting air pollution regulations (Hat tip).

Contact: Send an email to all three MOCs.

Script: Dear [MOC], I am concerned about the Ozone Standards Implementation Act (S263 (Senate) / HR806 (House). I support protections enacted by the EPA and the Clean Air Act. The OSI Act would disable the clean air standards that make people safer. We need emission reductions and toxin mitigation from industry. (If you have family, friends with lung issues or allergies, mention this.) I’m counting on you to work to protect my family’s health and stop this bill. Your actions on this issue affect my vote at the polls. Thank you.

 

D3 Daily Action

D3 Daily Action

Monday's D3 Daily Action

Oppose the ban against Muslims, despite SCOTUS ruling (hat tip).

Write: Your 3 MoCs at a local office

Script: I’m a constituent from [ZIP], concerned about discrimination against Muslims immigrating to the US and the SCOTUS ruling. I am asking you for two things: 1. To extend the definition of family to include grandparents, fiancé/es, aunts, uncles, nephews, and nieces. 2. To pass stronger anti-discrimination and sanctuary resolutions so that liberty and welcome may prevail. Name, address

Bonus: Read this infographic.

 

D3 Daily Action

D3 Daily Action

Thursday's D3 Daily Action

Oppose "No Sanctuary for Criminals Act," H.R. 3003 & "Kate’s Law," H.R. 3004 – Call Representative Tipton – Please call first thing this morning - VOTE HAPPENS TODAY!

Today, the House is voting on two anti-immigrant bills aimed at implementing Trump’s mass deportation agenda. The laws—called “No Sanctuary for Criminals Act” and “Kate’s Law”—would undercut local law enforcement’s ability to keep our communities safe, jeopardize national security, and give the Trump administration even more unchecked authority to apprehend, detain, and deport immigrants. Final votes are scheduled today on these bills!

With Health Care on the table, this is slipping under the radar...

Call Representative Tipton and tell him to VOTE NO on "No Sanctuary for Criminals Act," H.R. 3003 & "Kate’s Law," H.R. 3004.  

Lorella Praeli, the director of immigration policy at the American Civil Liberties Union, criticized the bills, saying they were “riddled with constitutional violations that completely disregard the civil and human rights of immigrants...Despite claims to the contrary, Kate’s Law and the No Sanctuary for Criminals Act will make our communities less safe by undermining the trust that law enforcement builds with its communities — citizen and immigrant alike.” - PBS

The National Immigrant Justice Center (NIJC) has joined more than 400 organizations in sending a letter to Congress opposing the bills and calling on elected officials to reject such nonsensical and harmful legislation. In the face of hateful rhetoric, now is the time to stand with immigrant communities.

More info:

Trump Calls on Congress to Crack Down on Illegal Immigration – CBS News

Trump presses passage of immigration measures – NBC News

President Trump urges passage of House immigration bills - PBS

 

 

D3 Daily Action

D3 Daily Action

Tuesday's D3 Daily Action

Support the RECLAIM Act.  Call Representative Tipton - House votes TODAY.

Today is a big day for the RECLAIM Act, the bipartisan piece of legislation that will funnel $1 billion to economic projects in communities impacted by the decline of the coal industry for cleaning up abandoned mine lands.

Representative Tipton is a member of the House Natural Resource Committee, and will help decide whether the bill moves forward.  Call Scott Tipton TODAY.

Script:  Hello. My name is (XX) and I am calling from (ZIP).  I am calling Rep. Tipton regarding the RECLAIM Act.  The RECLAIM act would create thousands of jobs for cleaning up abandoned mines in struggling communities impacted by the decline of the coal industry.  I am urging Rep. Tipton VOTE YES on the RECLAIM Act and the Beyer Amendment.  Please move this bill forward! Thank you.

This legislation came together after years of hard work and conversations with people living in affected communities, but now billionaire coal executives are standing in the way. Despite having shown no interest in the legislation over past the past two years, corporate coal interests have launched an all-out assault to kill the bill in the past few days. That's right, the same executives that are responsible for polluting our lands and streams are impeding our efforts to clean them up!

We can't let them and their Washington, D.C. lobbyists steal this opportunity from families trying to build a brighter future.

The RECLAIM Act uses existing funds to create jobs and clean up dangerous abandoned mines and doesn't use a cent of taxpayer money. Its funds come from the Abandoned Mine Lands fund, which was paid into over the past 40 years by coal companies.

The RECLAIM Act is a real opportunity to create jobs, empower communities, and build real long-term opportunities for working families in coal-impacted states across the country. The key to RECLAIM's success is using your voice. With its bipartisan support, we've never been closer to passing the RECLAIM Act and making this dream a reality. Thanks for calling your Representative today!

With thanks to the Sierra Club for this D3 Daily Action.

A Real Chance to Help Coal Communities—If We Fight for It - Union of Concerned Scientists

Reclaim Act represents massive environmental and economic revitalization of Appalachia – The Hill

Mine Land Reclamation Groups Laud Introduction of Federal RECLAIM Act – Eastern Pennsylvania Coalition for Abandoned Mine Reclamation

 

 

D3 Daily Action

D3 Daily Action

Monday's D3 Daily Action

Advocate for patients’ rights against corporate abuse.  Call Representative Tipton and tell him to vote NO on HR 1215.

It’s back with a different name, but you have seen this bill before. H.R. 1215, the so-called “Protecting Access to Care Act of 2017” does nothing to ensure that patients have access to health care. Instead, this bill would severely limit the ability of injured patients and their families to hold health care and medical providers accountable. The bill is so broadly drafted that it would also limit remedies against for-profit nursing homes, insurance providers, and even against doctors who commit intentional torts such as sexual abuse. It also contains a new provision making it more difficult to hold the pharmaceutical industry responsible for patient harm.

Call Scott Tipton’s Office and respectifully demand that he vote no on HR 1215.

Script: Hi. I’m from [ZIP] calling about HR 1215 which intends to strip patients’ rights and increase medical corporations’ protections from lawsuits. When it comes to medical neglect, abuse, and malpractice, patients’ rights need to come first. Does Representative Tipton support violating the 7th Amendment of the US Constitution?  Please ask him to vote against HR 1215.

Reminder:  TONIGHT - TELEPHONE TOWN HALL with Scott Tipton, 6PM MST
...but if you didn’t register by noon last Friday, you’re out of luck.  You might want to mention on today’s call to Mr. Tipton that you didn’t register by Friday but would still like to call in.  Let his office know how you feel about the registration deadline being set for 3 ½ days before the call.  

More info on HR 1215:

Big Business after Consumers Once Again: HR 1215 - The National Law Review

Oppose H.R. 1215: Congress Should Protect Patients. Period. – American Association for Justice

Fact Sheet: H.R. 1215 - The “Protecting Access to Unsafe Care Act of 2017” – Center for Justice and Democracy

 

D3 Daily Action

D3 Daily Action

Tuesday's D3 Daily Action: Begin the Impeachment Process

James Comey’s testimony confirms that Donald Trump tried to obstruct justice. That is an impeachable offense. Impeachment takes time but we need to start the process now. It’s time to call for impeachment hearings.

 DOWNLOAD PDF VERSION

IMPEACHMENT IS A PROCESS, AND THE TIME TO BEGIN IS NOW.

June 8, 2017. We should all remember this date, because it was the day when former FBI Director James Comey (a Republican) confirmed under oath what many of us already suspected and what the press has reported—that Donald Trump asked him to drop the investigation into disgraced former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn.

Obstruction of justice is an impeachable offense. Period. Let’s be clear about what this means: the President of the United States knew that the FBI was investigating his associates, TRIED TO STOP THAT INVESTIGATION, and then fired the person who wouldn’t stop it. This is obstruction of justice, a federal crime, and an impeachable offense. (See our explainer on obstruction of justice here.)

Don’t believe us? Then trust Laurence Tribe, a former Supreme Court clerk, constitutional scholar, and professor of constitutional law at Harvard Law School. His assessment: “The time has come for Congress to launch an impeachment investigation of President Trump for obstruction of justice.”

WHY DOES IMPEACHMENT EXIST? FOR TIMES LIKE THESE.

As Americans, we cannot afford to have a President who breaks the law. No one is above the law, not even the President—and the job of the Presidency is too important to trust it to someone who doesn’t respect the basic rules of our democracy. 

Impeachment is enshrined in the constitution. James Madison argued impeachment was “indispensable” to protect against the “incapacity, negligence or perfidy” of the president. The Constitution provides that “[t]he President, Vice President and all civil officers of the United States, shall be removed from office on impeachment for, and conviction of, treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors.” 

Yes, obstruction of justice is one of those “high crimes and misdemeanors.” President Bill Clinton was impeached for perjury and obstruction of justice. And the very first article of impeachment against Nixon was similarly obstruction of justice. Obstructionof Justice is absolutely an impeachable offense. 

WHAT IS IMPEACHMENT? IT’S A PROCESS—A LONG PROCESS.

After Watergate, in July of 1973, a Democratic Member of the House of Representatives introduced H.Res 513, legislation described as “Resolution impeaching Richard M. Nixon, President of the United States, of high crimes and misdemeanors.” It took three months for the House Judiciary Committee to even begin considering impeachment. It took more than a year before Nixon left office, before the full House had even voted, and the Senate hadn’t taken any action.

Bottom line: impeachment takes time. So if you want it done, you’ve got to get it started. And, it starts with impeachment hearings. Here’s how the impeachment process works:

The House acts first, then the Senate. Both the House and Senate have a role to play. First, the House decides whether or not to impeach the President (essentially whether to “charge” the president). Each “charge” is referred to as an “article of impeachment.” If the House votes to impeach, then the Senate holds a trial on each article of impeachment against the president.

Impeachment is only the beginning—it’s not a conviction. It’s worth noting here the difference between two terms that are often used interchangeably but do not mean the same thing. Being “impeached” only means that the House of Representatives voted to send articles of impeachment to the Senate for a trial. Being “removed from office” means that the Senate voted to convict the President. 

No President has ever been impeached and then convicted by the Senate and removed from office. President Andrew Johnson (in 1868) and Bill Clinton (in 1998/1999) were impeached by the House but acquitted in the Senate; Richard Nixon resigned to avoid being impeached.

YOUR EASY TO USE, STEP-BY-STEP IMPEACHMENT GUIDE:

  1. A Member of the House introduces a House Resolution calling for impeachment.Literally any House member can do this. The legislation will come in the form of a House Resolution (a.k.a. “H. Res” followed by a number). For Nixon, the final resolution was H. Res 803 ; for Clinton, it was H. Res 611. House Resolutions don’t need to be passed by the Senate or signed by Trump—they just have to pass the House.
  2. A committee holds impeachment hearings to investigate. After introduction, the legislation will be referred to a House committee, likely the House Judiciary Committee (as was the case for both Nixon and Clinton). The Judiciary Committee may conduct its own investigation, or accept the investigation of another party. For Nixon, the Judiciary Committee eventually began a months-long investigation. For Clinton, the Judiciary Committee simply accepted an existing investigation conducted by independent counsel Ken Starr.
  3. The committee votes. Once an investigation has concluded, the committee—again, in most cases, House Judiciary—will vote on the article or articles of impeachment. They can do this together as one resolution or separately for each article. In the case of Nixon, the Judiciary Committee approved the articles of impeachment with strong bipartisan support. For Clinton, the Committee approved impeachment mostly on a party line vote.
  4. The full House votes. If the Judiciary Committee approves one or more articles of impeachment, the next step is for the full House to vote either on the resolution or on individual articles. It takes just a simple majority in the House to impeach a President. If that happens, the process moves to the Senate.
  5. The Senate holds a trial. The Senate receives evidence and hears testimony, like in a court trial, and the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court presides. Members of the House make the case for impeachment, and the President is defended by his counsel.
  6. The full Senate votes. Once the trial concludes, the Senate meets in closed session to deliberate before it takes a final vote. A two-thirds majority (67 votes if all Senators are present) is required to convict the President and remove him from office. This is an extremely high bar that was set that way intentionally, given the gravity of removing a president from office.

IMPEACHMENT IS A POLITICAL PROCESS: REPUBLICANS WON’T GET THE PROCESS STARTED WITHOUT PRESSURE FROM YOU

Despite the evidence from Mr. Comey’s testimony that Trump obstructed justice, the hard truth is that Republicans have control of both the House and Senate. Some Republicans did join the call for a special prosecutor, who was appointed on May 17. This would have never happened without the immense pressure from the public and from Indivisible groups around the country. But politically speaking, most Republicans are not yet close to the point where they’ll call for—or even allow—impeachment proceedings to begin. This is especially true for Republican leaders who control the process and have fallen in line with Trump on basically every issue so far.

We Need Both an Independent Commission and to Begin the Impeachment Process. What we do know is that Donald Trump obstructed justice. That is enough to begin the impeachment process, and your Representative should be calling for it. But there is still much left that we don't know, especially about connections between Trump associates and the Russian government. That's why it’s important to call for both an independent commission, and to begin the impeachment process against Trump for the violations that we do know about. Remember, since the impeachment process will take time, we can still learn more if there is an independent commission continuing to investigate.

UNTIL WE GET IMPEACHMENT, CONTINUE TO RESIST THE TRUMP AGENDA

While we pressure Republicans to begin impeachment hearings, we must continue to oppose Trump’s agenda more broadly. One of the best ways to increase the chances of Trump’s impeachment is to drive a wedge between him and his party, by making it clear that Republicans can’t accomplish their agenda in Congress as long as Trump is President. 

Even as new information about the Trump camp’s ties to Russia continues to come to light with each new week, the Administration and its allies in Congress are pushing forward with their terrible legislative agenda. The House is voting to gut financial consumer protections. Mitch McConnell is maneuvering in the Senate to fast track their health care bill. Especially given the dark cloud that now hangs over the Administration, it is more important than ever to stop every piece of the Trump agenda. In doing so, we stop the worst damage to our country and our institutions while ramping up the pressure for Republicans to split with Trump.

WHAT YOU CAN DO TO STAND INDIVISIBLE

First and foremost, impeachment is a long game. We won’t be getting hearings anytime soon, and even once we do, the impeachment process is likely to take a long time. That’s why, in addition to opposing the Trump agenda more broadly, we need to be doing two things at once:

  1. Continue the push for an independent commission. Obstruction of justice should be enough for impeachment, but if a commission or the special prosecutor uncover further wrongdoing, that only bolsters the case, especially in this hyperpartisan environment.
  2. Call on your Representative to support impeachment resolutions calling for impeachment, like the one Rep. Al Green will introduce shortly. An impeachment resolution is step one in the process.

Impeachment won’t happen overnight—it will be a long-term fight. And we will continue to demand that Congress do more, especially as more information comes to light. Until then, we must continue to focus on stopping Republicans and Trump from advancing other parts of their agenda, including repealing the ACA, attacking immigrants and people of color, threatening the environment, repealing consumer financial protections, and attacking reproductive rights, to name only a few. The list of things we need to protect is long, but if we stick together, if we stand indivisible, we will win.

SAMPLE CALL DIALOGUE

Caller: Good morning/afternoon! Can you let me know [Senator Gardner / Senator Bennet / Representative Tipton]’s position on creating an independent commission to get all the facts regarding the Trump campaign’s possible collusion with Russia?

  • [For House members] A Swalwell-Cummings bill called the Protecting our Democracy Act (HR 356) would establish an independent commission to investigate Russian interference, but Republican leadership is refusing to even hold a vote on it. There is currently “discharge petition” to force a vote on the Protecting our Democracy Act. Over 190 members have already signed on (updated count here)—Will the Representative join them?
  • [For Senators] Senator Ben Cardin’s bill, S.27, would establish a commission of independent experts to examine the facts regarding Russia and the 2016 election. It currently has 26 co-sponsors (updated count here). Will the Senator join them?

OPTION 1: SUPPORTS

Staffer: Thank you for calling! [Senator/Representative Hernandez] supports H.R. 356 / S.27.

Caller: That’s great! Thank you. I’m pleased to hear that [Senator Gardner / Senator Bennet / Representative Tipton] supports creating an independent commission. It appears that by firing FBI Director Comey, Trump may have engaged in obstruction of justice—that’s an impeachable offense. If [Senator/Representative Hernandez] is truly concerned about the integrity of our democracy, will s/he also support starting impeachment hearings for this apparent violation?

Staffer: I will certainly pass on your concerns to the Senator/Representative.

Caller: Please do, and please take down my contact information to let me know when the Senator/Representative has made up his/her mind. I’m eager to hear what he/she decides.

OPTION 2: OPPOSES

Staffer: Thank you for calling! [Senator Gardner / Senator Bennet / Representative Tipton] opposes creating an independent commission. The Department of Justice already appointed former FBI Director Robert Mueller to serve as the special counsel investigating ties between Russia and the Trump campaign. We should let that investigation run its course.

Caller: That’s not enough. Mueller’s appointment was an important first step, but it is not nearly enough. Congress should pass legislation to create an independent commission to get a full and more transparent airing of the facts. I am disappointed that [Senator/Representative Hernandez] would choose to protect Trump rather than listen to his/her constituents.

OPTION 3: DODGES / HAS NO POSITION

Staffer: Thank you for calling! I don’t know what Senator Gardner / Senator Bennet / Representative Tipton position is.

Caller: That’s disappointing to hear—this is a critical issue for our democracy. Does [Senator Gardner / Senator Bennet / Representative Tipton] think it’s more important to protect Trump than listen to his/her own constituents? The appointment of Robert Mueller to serve as the special counsel investigating ties between Russia and the Trump campaign was an important first step, but it is not nearly enough. Congress should pass legislation to create an independent commission to get a full and more transparent airing of the facts.

Staffer: I didn’t know that but I’m happy to take down your concerns.

Caller: Here’s my concern: By firing FBI Director Comey, Trump appears to have engaged in obstruction of justice—that’s an impeachable offense. If [Senator Gardner / Senator Bennet / Representative Tipton] is truly concerned about the integrity of our democracy, will s/he also support starting impeachment hearings for this apparent violation?

Staffer: I will certainly pass on your concerns to the Senator/Representative.

Caller: Please do, and please take down my contact information to let me know when the Senator/Representative has made up his/her mind. I’m eager to hear what he/she decides.

D3 Daily Action

D3 Daily Action

Wednesday's D3 Daily Action

OPPOSE THE WALL STREET-DEREGULATING FINANCIAL CHOICE ACT (H.R.10).  Call Representative Tipton today (script below). 

The House of Representatives is scheduled to vote on a bill this June 7th that would dismantle the 2010 Wall Street reform legislation, known as the Dodd-Frank Act. This law created the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), an agency committed to protecting consumers and making sure that banks, lenders, and other financial institutions treat you fairly. Dodd-Frank imposes important rules to rein in the kind of Wall Street speculation that crashed the economy and caused millions of people to lose their jobs, homes, and savings. It also seeks to rewrite the Shareholder Proposal Rule, taking away crucial rights of shareholders to hold companies accountable for risky behavior that harms consumers, workers and the environment.  Make sure your member knows you oppose Rep. Hensarling’s Financial CHOICE Act. Call or visit Representative Scott Tipton's office to voice your opposition.

Script:  I am calling to respectfully demand that Representative Tipton oppose Representative Hensarling's Financial CHOICE Act. This bill would destroy the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, which has cracked down on predatory lenders and big banks that break the law and obtained $11.8 billion in relief for over 29 million Americans. This bill would give those lenders and big banks a free hand to exploit American consumers. This lack of oversight led to the 2008 mortgage crisis and 2009 financial crisis ("during which [I/my spouse/my sibling] lost [my/his/their] [job/house/retirement savings" ... share a personal story if possible). I expect Rep. Tipton to publicly state his opposition to this destructive bill and put the needs of his constituents above the desires of big banks and predatory lenders to profit.  Please take down my contact information to let me know when Rep. Tipton has made up his mind. I’m eager to hear what he decides and will be following his decision closely.

House Republicans Move to Cut Bank Regulations - NY Times

 

Financial Choice Act Looms Over Dodd-Frank's Future - US News & World Report

 

D3 Daily Action

D3 Daily Action

Tuesday's D3 Daily Action

Call for Jeff Sessions to step down as Attorney General.

Call: Senator Cory Gardner, Senator Michael Bennet & Representative Scott Tipton to demand Jeff Sessions' resignation.

Script: Hi. I’m from _ZIP_ calling with concerns about our leadership’s integrity. Jeff Sessions failed to reveal meetings with Russian diplomats during his security screening process. I would like _NAME_ to join Senator Schumer (D-NY) and Representative Lieu (D-CA) in calling for his resignation. Thanks.

Additionally, watch this quick video from MoveOn.org that summarizes some of the policies that are rapidly changing under the Trump/Sessions regime.

First on CNN: AG Sessions did not disclose Russia meetings in security clearance form, DOJ says - CNN

Sessions Was Advised Not to Disclose Russia Meetings on Security Forms - NY Times

With thanks to Jen Hoffman's Activism Checklist for this D3 Daily Action.

D3 Daily Action

D3 Daily Action

Friday's D3 Daily Action

Reject Trump's Budget: The White House released their budget on Tuesday - and it is a cruel list of proposals that would have devastating impact on Americans. THE GOOD NEWS: Trump's budget needs the approval of congress. Please call your MOC's Michael Bennet, Cory Gardner and Scott Tipton and tell them to REJECT TRUMP'S BUDGET

If Trump gets his way, here are 16 of things that go:

  • Environmental education
  • Healthy school food for kids
  • Support for new forms of energy that don’t poison our planet
  • Support for fact-based scientific research
  • Climate science programs
  • Ability to protect clean air and clean water
  • Programs for the poor, including health care and disability payments
  • College loan programs for the poor and those who take jobs in nonprofit organizations
  • Protection for women’s health
  • Food assistance for older Americans
  • Nutrition programs for low-income women, infants, and children
  • Support for public libraries, PBS, and arts
  • Heating assistance for low-income people
  • Before and after school and summer programs for children in low-income communities
  • Emergency food assistance
  • Efforts to revitalize public housing

 

 

D3 Daily Action

D3 Daily Action

Monday's D3 Daily Action

Let your Members of Congress know that they must stand up to Donald Trump and say NO to the Pence-Kobach Commission. We will not allow Donald Trump to erode our freedom to vote any further.

Donald Trump is attempting to manipulate the election process by announcing the Pence-Kobach Presidential Commission on Election Integrity. Members of Congress must take a stand today to protect our freedom to vote and not allow Trump's All-Star team of notorious vote suppressors to further reduce our freedom to vote. 

Call Senator Cory Gardner, Senator Michael Bennet and Representative Scott Tipton today and ask that they stand in opposition to this panel:

Script:  Hi. I’m a constituent from _ZIP_ and I am calling to express my concern about Trump’s new election integrity commission. Considering the lack of support for claims of widespread voter fraud, this panel is a huge waste of taxpayer money. What is _NAME_ doing to oppose this panel?

Almost to a person, Trump's team for the commission is an all-star line up of the most vicious anti-voting freedom officials from across the country. Vice President Mike Pence, the chair, implemented voter suppression tactics in Indiana as Governor that led the state to have the lowest voter participation in the entire country. The goal of government should be to make certain that more people are voting, not fewer, and Pence has demonstrated he is in no way qualified to lead a commission about our electoral system. 

Kris Kobach is the draconian Secretary of State in Kansas who has spent state money fighting to remove thousands of voters from the rolls and enacting the most restrictive voter ID laws in the nation. He has spread his attacks on Black voters and other voters of color nationwide by developing the Interstate Crosscheck system which some states use to purge voters. Interstate Crosscheck has been shown in multiple reports to over-represent Black voters and has purged numerous eligible voters from the rolls stripping them of their freedom to vote. Announcing Kris Kobach as a Vice-Chair of the "Presidential Commission on Election Integrity" tells us the intent of the commission is to nationalize voter suppression laws he has piloted at the state level. Kobach has also repeatedly parroted Trump's ludicrous assertion about millions of fraudulent votes in the 2016 election.

All members of Congress need to stand up to Donald Trump and say no to the Pence-Kobach Commission. We will not allow Donald Trump to erode our freedom to vote any further. 

Trump’s commission on ‘election integrity’ could instead restrict voting - Washington Post

Trump Picks Voter ID Advocate for Election Fraud Panel - NY Times

The conservative gladiator from Kansas behind restrictive voting laws - Washington Post

President Trump launches commission on 'election integrity' - ABC News

SIgn the Petition  - Color of Change

With thanks to Color of Change and Jen Hoffman’s Activism Checklist for this Daily Action.

 

D3 Daily Action

D3 Daily Action

Monday's D3 Daily Action

If you live in the Montezuma County area or if you can get to Cortez, Colorado THIS MORNING, please go to the Montezuma County Courthouse to protest Representative Scott Tipton who will be attending the Montezuma County Commissioners Meeting at 8:30am. 

In casting his vote for TrumpCare last Thursday,  Representative Scott Tipton chose to give Donald Trump a few political points, at the expense of his own constituents.

As you probably know, the TrumpCare bill is a parade of horrors. It harms the poor, children, women and families, persons with disabilities, and even people with employer-provided coverage. The only folks who benefit are the wealthy and corporations.

If you cannot attend the meeting in Cortez, please make an effort to visit one Representative Scott Tipton's offices this week or make a phone call to speak to his staffers. 

HERE IS YOUR SAMPLE CALL DIALOGUE:

Caller: Good morning/afternoon! I’m calling to express my disappointment and anger that Representative Tipton voted for TrumpCare. I’d like to know why he would vote to take away coverage from 24 million Americans. Can he justify his vote?

Staffer: Thank you for calling. Representative Tipton voted for the American Health Care Act because Obamacare was collapsing and this bill will fix it.

Caller: That is wrong. The ACA isn’t perfect, but it has expanded access to coverage to millions of Americans. It created protections that ensure that people with pre-existing conditions wouldn’t be denied access to health care, or be forced to pay higher premiums. Instead of working to make health care better for Americans, Rep. Tipton has put millions of American lives at risk. This is unacceptable.

Staffer: Actually, the American Health Care Act contained provisions that ensure that people with pre-existing conditions aren’t charged more for their health care. More than $130 billion is allocated to protect American consumers.

Caller: That is a lie. You promised me that you wouldn’t vote on a bill that eliminated protections for people with pre-existing conditions. TrumpCare creates a giant loophole for insurance companies to charge people with pre-existing more for their health care. As someone [with/who knows someone with] a [pre-existing condition], I’m angry that you would betray your word in order to give Donald Trump a political win.

If Rep. Tipton gets another chance to vote on TrumpCare, I demand that he vote no. I also want him to justify his vote to his constituents by holding a town hall this recess.

Staffer: Thank you, I will pass along your concern.

Caller: Please do, and take down my contact info, I would like a written explanation for his vote.

D3 Daily Action

D3 Daily Action

Friday's D3 Daily Action

Ask Your Representative to Support Lead Testing in Colorado Public Schools’ Drinking Water.

Call Representative Tipton and urge him to vote YES on House Bill 1306 to protect children from a hidden harm.  Script:  "Please approve a bill to provide funding for lead testing in water in Colorado Public Schools.  Most of the arguments against this proposition revolve around the cost of cleaning up lead contamination.  Such thinking is short-sighted.  This bill provides necessary funding to give schools the help that they need in order to ensure the health and safety of students.  Vote YES on HB 1306."

HB 1306 would provide funds for Colorado schools to voluntarily test for lead in their drinking water, something you'd think we already do!  However, just seven of Colorado’s 178 school districts have tested their water for lead, and in these districts, 77 schools were found to have lead in their water. This bill would make it easier for schools to make sure their drinking water is safe.  

“School district budgets are in crisis across the state with the ongoing cut to schools known as the Negative Factor expected to increase in the coming school year” said Kerrie Dallman, president of the Colorado Education Association. “Rural school districts are struggling to keep teachers, so we certainly cannot expect them to divert precious resources away from the classroom to test drinking water. This bill provides necessary funding to give schools the help they need to ensure the health and safety of students.”

Pass Legislation to Protect Colorado Children From Lead Poisoning – The Denver Post

Diverse Groups Support Bill to Fund Testing for Lead in Colorado Schools – Conservationco.org

D3 Daily Action

D3 Daily Action

Thursday's D3 Daily Action

Screen Shot 2017-05-03 at 8.30.23 PM.png

URGENT:  Call Representative Scott Tipton this morning and DEMAND he vote NO on the latest plan to repeal the Affordable Care Act.  If you have already called, PLEASE - CALL AGAIN.

The House will vote TODAY to repeal and replace Obamacare.  Today could determine whether Trumpcare dies or lurches lethally forward.  Rep. Scott R. Tipton is on a SHORT LIST of representatives who are leaning yes, but who are reportedly still making up their minds. Call right now and urge a NO vote on Trumpcare. If you've called before, please call again. 

Script:  "I'm a constituent and a voter in Representative Tipton's district (provide name, phone number and zip code), and I am calling to urge Rep. Tipton to vote NO on the latest plan to repeal the Affordable Care Act, take away health care from 24 million Americans, and end protections for people with pre-existing conditions."  And if you have a health care story of your own, please share it —personal stories can impact lawmakers' decisions.

IT IS VITAL THAT WE CALL NOW:
The House will vote today to repeal and replace Obamacare, “setting up a dramatic moment that could give President Donald Trump the significant legislative victory he's been seeking.  Top Republicans are very confident. Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy emerged from Speaker Paul Ryan's office Wednesday night all but triumphant.”
Rep. McCarthy says, “We’re going to pass it.” - CNN

With $8 Billion Deal on Health Bill, House G.O.P. Leader Says ‘We Have Enough Votes’ – NY Times:  “None of the legislative tweaks under consideration changes the serious harm to patients and the health care delivery system” that the bill would cause, said Dr. Andrew W. Gurman, the president of the American Medical Association. The latest changes, he said, “tinker at the edges without remedying the fundamental failing of the bill — that millions of Americans will lose their health insurance as a direct result of this proposal.”  House Democratic leader, Nancy Pelosi of California, said the money was a pittance compared with the likely need. “It’s a joke,” she said. “It’s a very sad, deadly joke.”

House Republicans to Vote on Health Care Thursday - NBC