Some weeks it feels like there are more calls to action than there are hours in a day, especially amid the mid-session flurry of bills and the budgeting process.
The budgeting process in all three capitals is - again - revealing conservative’s true colors in terms of providing essential safety nets, education, healthcare and ensuring protection of basic civil rights. Progressives in Kansas, Missouri and DC are playing both offense and defense on dozens of bills in all three of the capitals. We have conservatives blatantly obstructing debates, the amendments and isses we have voted for, and progressive agendas.
Still, we aren’t going to back down on important issues. And we’re going to continue to hold our elected representatives publicly accountable, even those who ignore our letters, calls and visits. Indivisible KC has somewhere around 4,000 folks on our email list and followers on social media - including you. If everyone - like you - who cares enough to look at the info we share also takes just one small action a week (a call, a letter) we have tremendous influence.
At a minimum, we hope you turn out to vote. Missouri has school board and municipal elections on Tuesday. Why do local elections matter so much? First, turn-out for local elections is usually very low. Every vote takes on more importance. Secondly, local politics affect so much in terms of our daily quality of life and the opportunities presented to our kids. Finally, these are the offices that launch larger political careers. We need to cultivate progressive representatives from the ground up.
Change takes time and persistence.
Kansas Governor Laura Kelly and U.S. Representative Sharice Davids both hosted well-attended town-hall meetings last week. Both used the meetings to disucss legislative issues, meet with constiutents, answer questions and hear our concerns. Kelly's meeting was boycotted by Kansas Senator Jim Denning, although the event was held within a mile of his home.
Lawmakers in Kansas have blown several informal deadlines for boosting funding for public schools to satisfy a court mandate because Republicans who control the Legislature are at odds over how to allocate the new dollars and what policy strings should be attached.
What you can do: Contact your state legislators to ask that our state make fiscally responsible, *bipartisan* decisions and not sacrifice our kids education. Find their contact information at http://www.indivisiblekc.com/ks-leg---kc-area.html
And rather than align with the majority of Americans who believe in gun sense legislation, the Kansas
House voted to continue to allow concealed guns on college campuses and lowered the age for conceal and carry permit to age 18.
What you can do: Contact your state legislators and tell them that guns do not belong on college campuses, or in the hands of people too young to drink! Find their contact information at http://www.indivisiblekc.com/ks-leg---kc-area.html
The Kansas House also gave first-round approval Monday to a bill that would require medical facilities and doctors to inform women that some medically induced abortions could be "reversed" if a doctor intervenes - a procedure that is scientifically unproven.
What you can do: Contact your state legislators to ask that legislators stop encroaching on the rights of women. Remember this isn't about babies, it's about controlling women. Find your representatives contact information at http://www.indivisiblekc.com/ks-leg---kc-area.html
And in Missouri -
The Missouri Senate passed a bill this week that would make it harder to impeach our state’s top officials. Interestingly, this bill would have prevented the investigation into former Governor Greitens because those actions happened before he became governor. The bill will now go to the Missouri house. Read more at https://fox2now.com/2019/03/28/after-greitens-missouri-senate-votes-to-limit-impeachment/.
What you can do: Contact your state representative to say “no” on this bill that limits impeachment to “corruption and crime in office” versus *any* actions — past and present. Find your representative’s contact information at http://www.indivisiblekc.com/mo-leg---kc-area.html.
The Missouri House passed its version of the state operating budget on March 28. Unfortunately, state Republicans have not accounted for a significant revenue drop. Revenue growth is down 4.3 percent, and instead of addressing that, state Republicans are instead crossing their fingers that state tax returns cover that shortfall. If our state does not hit its budgeted revenue, it will affect state funding this year *and* next. This was also the first budget process since Republicans took control of the house in 2003 that not a single Democratic amendment was heard in committee or during floor debate. For those of us who elected Democratic representatives, it means those we elected are not even getting a chance to speak for us. Our state works better when we work together. That Missouri GOP isn’t allowing that.
What you can do: Contact your state legislators to ask that our state make fiscally responsible, *bipartisan* decisions and not base budget numbers on unlikely hopes and wishes. Find their contact information at http://www.indivisiblekc.com/mo-leg---kc-area.html.
U.S. Senate Republicans will vote next week to change Senate rules in order to allow Trump nominees to sail through the confirmation process with minimal debate time. The current rule allows for up to 30 hours of debate time. Republicans want to slash that to two. While Republicans claim otherwise, it is not Democrats stalling the process. It is a lack of nominees. Of the current 128 openings in federal district courts, 72 of those positions are vacant because the president has yet to nominate a candidate. Read more: https://www.kansascity.com/news/politics-government/article228582069.html
What you can do: Contact your U.S. Senator to ask that they keep the current rules. Find your senators’ contact information at http://www.indivisiblekc.com/us-senate---kc-area.html
And a tip of the fin to Greenpeace USA for thier Swamp Thing protest at the confirmation hearing for Trump's pick for Secretary of the Iterior, David Bernhardt.
See what happens when you "drain" the swamp? All the freaky creatures come skittering out from under the rocks.