Hello Indivisibles of KC,
This week, we're celebrating Valentine's Day! You can show your Members of Congress that you really do care about them and their votes! Remind them that you're watching, and say thank you when you like how they vote -- and of course, correct them when they don't make you feel so warm and fuzzy.
We especially want to thank our representatives in D.C. who supported H.R. 1 - Sharice Davids (KS-3) and Emanuel Cleaver (MO-5) (See National News, below.) Grab the kids, some construction paper (or your favorite electronic media) and share the love!
Again, not everyone gets to feel the love ... especially the Missouri House representatives who voted to undermine Missouri's Sunshine laws and Amendment 1, (See Local News, below) which the state overwhelmingly approved just last November.
In Kansas, the Senate passed SB 22, an irresponsible tax cut that purports to be returning money to the people, but overwhelmingly benefits corporations and wealthy filers.
What you can do: Look up how your State Senator voted, and let them know you care by sending them a note to thank them for their Nay vote, or tell them that their Aye vote was a vote against the best interest of most Kansans. Also, it's not too early to let your State Representativehear from you before SB 22 reaches that chamber.
Another major Senate bill, SB 44, continued hearings this week. This bill provides the inflation funding for schools that was mandated by the court last summer, and if passed, could signal the end of nearly a decade of litigation.
What you can do: Write to your Senator and encourage them to support SB44. This tool from Mainstream Coalition will help you take action quickly and easily.
Don't miss Loud Light's Week 4 recap (3:53) for all the details from Topeka this week.
And in Missouri, the House voted to undermine state Sunshine Laws and Amendment 1/Clean Missouri which was approved by a majority of voters just last fall. The bill, HR 445 was meant to broaden Sunshine laws, but a last minute amendment tuned the whole thing on its head:
"Several new exemptions to the open records law commonly known as the Sunshine law are created including ... communications involving advice, opinions, and recommendations concerning the deliberative decision-making process of any public governmental body." The broad language of the exemption to Sunshine Laws in the amended bill would mean that legislators could keep almost any document in darkness. This is the opposite of transparency in government, and the will of the people of Missouri.
What you can do: If your House Representative voted for the bill, call them and tell them that going against the will of the people will not be tolerated. Then contact your State Senator and ask them to pass a clean version of HB 445 with no tricky amendments. Here's a link to look up contact information for your Missouri representatives.
We've also written some draft letters for you to work from. Remember, the more personalized the letter, the better.
Amy Klobuchar (NPR) and Elizabeth Warren (CNN), both expected to run for president, officially joined the race this week.
Have you read up on H.R.1? The For The People Act is a sweeping bill introduced in the House, with hearings begun this past week. Check out our page or NPR's full explanation on it, but briefly, it adds provisions that:
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Sen. Markey rolled out their initial framework for the Green New Deal this week. You can read up on what is and what isn't in the resolution from source documents and analysis here (NPR).