Liz Hunter-Keller from Seattle Womxn Marching Forward. The rally: FB video: 23:46
The rally was about ending gun violence.
Rhiannon Rasaretnam & Emilia Allard, the youth leaders organizing March For Our Lives Seattle
Rollback of Dodd-Frank Regulations
S. 2155 The Senate voted Monday to advance a set of updates to a bipartisan bill to loosen strict banking rules that are part of the Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act: TheHill.com. Both of our senators voted against its cloture: Senate.gov. The bill is now in the amendment process. 12 Democrats voted for it: Vox.com.
Schools & Guns
It is National Public Schools week: LovePublicEducation.org.
March 24th March
Are our senators going to the march on the 24th? We don’t know.
They have chatted to both of the student organizers of the Seattle march, Amelia and Rhiannon. The adults are just advising the youth: they are running it. The senators are very impressed with them. We encourage them to go to a march.
Against Gun Violence
Sen. Murray saying the names of those affected by gun violence from WA on the Senate floor. Sen. Murray supports the school walkout on Wednesday:
Sen. Cantwell’s statement on the floor: YouTube.com.
Sen. McConnell will not allow a vote on the issue whilst senators might pass it. The Stoneman Douglas students are fighting this.
Sen. Murray has told Betsy Devos she wants a hearing about gun control. DeVos is head of President Trump’s new commission on school safety. Sen. Murray’s statement about her meeting with DeVos: Murray.Senate.gov. Sign her petition: Act.PattyMurray.com.
The Dickey Amendment
In 1995, the Dickey Amendment stopped any more research by the CDC into gun violence, or how to stop it: NYTimes.com. Sen. Murray is working on rescinding this.
WA Legislation About Guns
Washington State has recently had bills passed to protect us:
SB. 5992: a ban on bump stocks
SB. 6298: adding domestic violence to the list of conditions that stop people buying firearms
SB. 5553: allowing people suffering mental illness to add themselves to a do-not-purchase list
These do not go far enough. People can still bring guns in across the State border.
In addition, there is still HR. 38: the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017 headed for the Senate, which allows people to carry concealed weapons in any state – regardless of a state’s laws; and there is a legal loophole which allows people to buy guns at gun shows.
Mental health patients aren’t the main casualty or problem. Suicides are a huge amount of the casualties: EveryTownResearch.org.
The Opioid Crisis
Sen. Cantwell recently toured the state talking about the opioid crisis: YelmOnline.com. She is fighting predatory pharmaceutical companies and working with Kamala Harris on an opioid bill: Cantwell.Senate.gov. Sen. Portman is joining them: TheHill.com.
Pharmaceutical manufacturers are responding to the legislation.
Sen. Cantwell is fighting block grants for Medicaid to pay for $1.5 billion tax scam: Cantwell.Senate.gov.
Sen. Murray called for resignation of Scott Lloyd in a press release last week because he denies ladies abortions. She wants people to join her. She will continue to demand it.
Sen. Cantwell does not want tariffs: she wants discussions about sensible solutions.
The War in Yemen
We all have concerns about the war in Yemen. It was a recent daily action of Seattle Indivisible.
The main way to support our withdrawal is Senate Joint Resolution 54. We want our senators to support it. It is in the Committee on Foreign Relations.
Preventing the Attack on the ADA
HR. 620: ADA Education and Reform Act of 2017
Sen. Duckworth wants all senators to sign her letter to Schumer and McConnell by Wednesday. The alert was sent to multiple disability organizations on Tuesday morning. They have 41; they need 11 more. Sen. Duckworth on HR. 620: Curbed.com.
Tillerson Out; Pompeo as SoS & Haspel for CIA Head
Tillerson Attacked for Russian Statement
Our senators should speak against Tillerson being fired: NPR.org. Tillerson was fired shortly after saying publicly that the British incident – and many others were – by Russia and we should act:
Pompeo as SoS
Haspel as Director of the CIA
Gina Haspel is Trump’s proposed new director of the CIA. She is known for torturing people, and we want our senators to oppose her nomination.
Trump Meeting Kim Jong Un
Trump wanted to meet Kim Jong Un by May: CNN.com. We don’t have an ambassador. Or an ongoing Secretary of State. There is usually a lot of work before and the actual visit is just a formality. #ThisIsNotNormal.
Protect Our Democracy
Forum at UW on the 29th
Hacking Democracy: A Forum on Election Security: SeattleLWV.org.
Thu, Mar 29 – 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM
House Intel Committee
They have concluded that Russia was not trying to get Trump elected. Their report is not final. Maybe they can share their information with the Senate Intel Committee when it is. The Democrats may write up their own report: Bloomberg.com.
What We Need
Nunes ended the House investigation: Bloomberg.com. Will our senators protect elections, other Congressional investigations and the FBI’s investigations – and ensure that states use paper ballots? States are in charge of their election systems in the Constitution: USA.gov. Some states are choosing to use paper ballots: BostonGlobe.com. Also:
Sen. Murray’s Press Releases and Videos on the Senate Floor
Senator Murray Joins Colleagues on Senate Floor to Call on Congressional Republicans to Defend our Democracy and End the Partisan Smear Campaign Distracting from Critical Questions about Trump and Russia: Murray.Senate.gov
Top Senate & House Democrats Warn President Trump: To Use Nunes Memo as Pretext for Firing Deputy AG Rosenstein, Special Counsel Mueller or other DOJ Leadership Would be Viewed As an Attempt to Obstruct Justice in Russia Investigation: Murray.Senate.gov
Longview Was Hacked
Longview was hacked recently and they got personal data. Sen. Cantwell worked on fixing that. Her press release on requests to implement protections to cyber systems: Cantwell.Senate.gov.
Sen. Cantwell is considering legislation to protect our elections – and to get the State Department to spend the $120m dollars it was granted to protect electoral systems: NYTimes.com.
Our senators also need to enforce sanctions – can they make a resolution that can be placed in the upcoming spending bill on the 23rd? The sanctions are not being enforced – despite being overwhelmingly popular in the Senate: Reuters.com.
The EPA budget has been cut by 50% since the 1970s, and Trump wants to cut it by another 23%. They zeroed out Puget Sound funding in the proposed budget: SeattlePI.com.Sen. Cantwell’spressrelease to protect our salmon: Cantwell.Senate.gov.
An Example of EPA Cleanup
Three decades after the Asarco smelter shutdown, its toxic legacy surprises Tacoma newcomers: TheNewsTribune.com.
Tuesday, Sen. Cantwell had Zinke before the Energy and Natural Reources Committee to discuss expensive doors; private jets; 2.2 million acres taken away from the public to be developed; and elephant imports: Energy.Senate.gov.
Our senators joined their colleagues in writing a letter to the DHS Secretary to require the expediting of DACA renewals last week: Cantwell.Senate.gov.
To find out if you or yours can renew or apply for DACA for the first time, please see: NWIRP.org.
The Supreme Court denied the White House’s attempt to end the DACA program: CourtHouseNews.com.
The Ethics Commission
David J. Apol is Acting Director as of July 20, 2017. The leadership: OGE.gov.
The Ethics Commission issues documents and recommendations.
Qatar & UAE
KellyAnne Conway violated the Hatch Act: CNN.com.
DeVos has numerous conflicts of interest: Politico.com.
There have been a record number of firings or resignations under this administration: TheGuardian.com.
To get rid of people, sometimes it takes public outcry.
Tax Scam Bill
It is riddled with errors: NYPost.com. There were errors in the ACA too: but Republicans rushed it through way too quickly. It would be good for Democrats to leverage changes to improve the bill. It would be unlikely they could use the Byrd rule – and fixes could be filibustered.
Gov. Inslee recently signed the WA net neutrality bill: NYTimes.com. There will be legal challenges to it if net neutrality is taken away federally. We need one more vote to pass the Congressional Review Act and protect federal net neutrality. All Democrats and Sen. Collins have signed onto it: it takes 51 votes. It could be enacted until April 23rd: NBCNews.com.
more about net neutrality.
Our Senators’ Staff
Sen. Murray has 10 staff in Seattle. Her satellite offices throughout WA have one to three staff. The leadership and committee staff that work with Sen. Murray give her about 80 in total. Sen. Cantwell has around 40 staff members. There have been big cuts in staff numbers over the last ten or twenty years.
Interns are less available in Spring Break and finals week.
Sen. Murray is upgrading her voicemail system to accept more messages. She accepts and counts comments from people when her legislation affects them. She got about 3,000 calls about Betsy DeVos’ nomination in one afternoon.