Indivisible: A Practical Guide for Resisting the Trump Agenda

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In 2009, a conservative uprising occurred in the form of the Tea Party. A grassroots movement, the Tea Party capitalized on anti-Obama sentiments to build a genuinely effective political force, one that forced even then-House Majority Leader Eric Cantor out of office in favor of a hard line anti-immigrant conservative.

Less than a month after Donald Trump’s shocking Electoral College victory, about two dozen Democratic congressional staffers who served during the rise of the Tea Party released “Indivisible: A Practical Guide for Resisting the Trump Agenda.” Through four comprehensive chapters, they outlined a plan for effective progressive opposition to Trump in the mold of the successes of the Tea Party.

To the surprise of the creators, “Indivisible” immediately went viral. But it shouldn’t be surprising. Donald Trump lost the election by almost 3 million votes, a fact that he still cannot accept. Republicans also lost the popular vote in the Senate by over 10 million and lost six seats in the absurdly gerrymandered House elections. Trump went in as a historically unpopular president, and has only gotten more unpopular every day. Millions more people attended the Women’s March protests than his inauguration. The resistance is real. This is far greater than the Tea Party ever was.

“The bottom line is that our ideas are supported by more Americans than theirs,” said Ezra Levin, a former staffer for Texas Democratic Rep. Lloyd Doggett who co-wrote the guide. “Their goal is to quickly pass as much bad legislation and regulatory changes as possible because they know their ideas aren’t popular and they know they don’t represent the vast majority of the country.”

Levin’s comments to Mother Jones reflect the three primary goals of the guide:

  1. Stall the Trump agenda by forcing them to redirect energy away from their priorities.
  2. Sap Representatives’ will to support or drive reactionary change.
  3. Reaffirm the illegitimacy of the Trump agenda.

The guide has already been an inspiration to progressive anti-Trump organizers. Along with protests, liberals have been calling their congressional representatives nonstop, storming town halls, and starting local groups to fight Trump and the GOP on the ground level.

On February 15, about 400 Californians met for the first officially “Indivisible”-inspired public event, hosted by Indivisible Yolo. Coordinator Emily Hill told the crowd: “We are more than a story, we are a movement.”

Download or read the guide here and take action locally with this tool!


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Jordan Valerie Allen

 

Jordan is a political writer, activist, cinephile, proud queer woman of color, and Mad Max: Fury Road fanatic. She’s cautiously optimistic about the future of humanity.

 

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Rep. Travis Bennett (D) – New Hampshire’s 8th District

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Political advocacy and involvement is many times placed into the ‘future goals’ bucket for many millennials; however, with more Americans than ever looking for new ideas and leadership, there’s no better time to raise your hand. Travis Bennett launched the Plymouth State University Democrats organization, and in 2014, balanced classes, work, and a New Hampshire House of Representatives election on his way to winning the race in the 8th District.

The progressive Democrat has advocated for the environmental issues facing the communities of Hebron, Holderness and Plymouth which he represents, as well as given a voice to students at PSU who didn’t feel heard due to their more temporary status in the area.

One of the main factors in Travis’ decision to enter the political arena has been the current lack of recognition of the impact of governmental interaction with the society at large. Speaking on what led him to get involved, Travis said “Today… there needs to be some social structure in place to help citizens provide the basic framework in which society operates. When that’s not there, it’s pretty clear which states succeed and which states don’t.” With support for some drug decriminalization, greater educational funding, and criminal sentencing reform, we’re excited to see the results of Travis’ advocacy.

Last year, Travis Bennett won re-election to the New Hampshire House of Representatives, and has begun his second term. His NH Representatives bio can be found here, and you can keep updated on his plans on his Twitter and Facebook.

1460 Days of Action – Daily Tasks to #Resist Trump

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Another organization that popped up in resistance to the Trump Administration, 1460 Days of Action provides a toolkit of ideas on how to get involved in the political process and how to effectively resist the new administration.

Their website provides links to advocacy organizations, instructions on how to best communicate with an elected official, and encourages everyone to stand up for anyone who is being harassed, bullied, or violated. Their “Toolkit for Change” is simple, with five ways to empower yourself for resistance. With short, easy titles for each “tool” – Know, Be Heard, Act, Support, and Lead – they show users just how easy it is to engage in the political process and actually be effective in doing so.

1460 Days of Action encourages every day citizens to become politically engaged, proving that anyone can and should be an activist in resistance. The toolkit starts with “Know”, which provides helpful links to learn about what rights we have as citizens and what rights our friends have as immigrants. For people who have never called or met face to face with an elected Representative or Senator, they provide guidelines under “Be Heard” on what to say and who to call in order to have the biggest impact. With a list of organizations in their “Support” and “Act” tools, anyone can find a way to make positive change in the issue areas that they care most about. And for those who want to make an even bigger impact by running for office or getting involved in campaigns, 1460’s “Lead” tool provides ways to learn how to do that as well.

To dive in and start using the toolkit yourself, go to their website at www.1460.live and learn what you can do to stand up and speak out over the next four years. Or for regular updates on the toolkit and daily calls to action, you can follow them on Twitter @1460Action and on Instagram @1460daysofaction.

Call Them In: Timely Talking Points to #Resist & Fight For Progress

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Picture this: you’re a Member of Congress (congrats! maybe?) and you’re weighing your options on an upcoming vote, trying to make up your mind – what’s going to be the most impactful way for someone to get your attention? A tweet? An email? With the exception of the “Easy D” in-Chief, probably not.

We easily forget emails, tweets, and generally a whole universe worth of noise that rumbles past us on a daily basis. But what about that conversation you had on the phone with a real living, breathing human? Enter, Call Them In.

About as straightforward of a change maker as they come, Call Them In cuts through the red-tape of community organizing by enabling a “collaborative network” – that’s us – to make a beeline for the halls of Congress by making informed, detailed, and timely phone calls to our Reps.

Congressional staff, the human shields of Congress, are going to pay a lot more attention to a call. And getting enough calls from constituents is going to resonate; making it something the boss is definitely going to hear about.

This is where the folks at CTI get strategic in a way that would make Underwood proud (sans a Putinesque murderous streak and machiavellian lust for power). CTI doesn’t want you calling people willy-nilly. Rather, as explained on their “About Us” page, the rabble in the House of Representatives don’t allow the minority party to filibuster legislation. Whereas, their better half, the Senate, does.

The Senate needs the magic number 60 to end a filibuster and vote on a bill. Therefore, Republicans need to say “pretty please” to Senate Dems if they’re going to pass legislation (barring the nuclear option, and let’s not go there). Thus, CTI’s first broadside is aimed squarely at the Senate. Even more specifically, CTI has “three fundamental issues toward which to direct our initial focus,” including:

  • Protecting Obamacare
  • Blocking radical appointments
  • Preventing tax cuts for the wealthy

So if you’re feeling the on-target strategy and the no BS approach, check out CTI’s website to get started. Once there, you can sign up for action alerts and find great tips on calling senators (for example, don’t call the senator’s district office if you wanna talk policy).

When the big moment arrives and you receive an action alert, they’ll guide you the whole way; providing you the background information on the issue, the phone numbers of your senators, and a short, snappy script to use when speaking with a congressional staffer (most likely a bewildered intern), all of which will take no more than five minutes. If you’re looking to apply real pressure on politicians, Call Them In.

Rep. Bobby Carroll (D) NY-44: Inspiring, Young, & Newly Elected

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Rep. Bobby Carroll is a newly minted State Assemblymen from New York’s 44th district. A lifelong New Yorker and Brooklynite,
Carroll recently graduated from New York Law School before deciding to run for Rep. Jim Brennan’s seat, who’s retiring after serving more than 30 years in Albany.

Despite his youth, Carroll already has more than a decade of local NYC politics experience. He was the president of the Central Brooklyn Independent Democrats club and has worked on numerous local campaigns in the years leading up to his own.

An articulate and inspiring orator, Carroll’s inauguration featured Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, Councilman Brad Lander, and many more.  

The issues facing the New York State Assembly are vast, and Rep. Bobby Carroll hopes to make changes for the better on Ethics, Education, and Criminal Justice (just to name a few).

Check out his website to read about all of the issues he cares about, and also be sure to visit his Facebook and Twitter pages to stay up to date with him.

Rep. Aundre Bumgardner (R) – Former Rep for Connecticut’s 41st District


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At 20-years-old, Aundre knocked on over 5,000 doors to earn a spot on the ballot in his largely Democratic district two years ago. “I don’t meet the litmus test for your conventional Republican, whether by my race or my age,” Bugardner said in a Huffington Post article in 2015. “But since my district is historically blue, I can’t be a partisan zealot or create more problems in the statehouse than I solve. Because of that, Democrats so far have welcomed me with open arms.”

Aundre proudly served as his state representative with his main focuses being lowering taxes and improving Connecticut’s education system. He unfortunately lost his 2016 re-election bid, but we are sure he will move on to do great things. Be sure to keep an eye out for him.

Want to learn more about Aundre? Check out his websiteFacebook, and Twitter. Best of luck, Aundre (and stay centered!).

Swing Left & Take Back The House

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Among the amazing organizations to have popped up in response to the 2016 election, Swing Left proves to be an incredibly focused and useful tool in targeting house seats for the 2018 General election. Swing Left is the brainchild of three non politicos Ethan Todras-Whitehill, Joshua Kraftchin, and Miriam Stone who decided to channel their anger into action.

After weighing options for focus, the house of representatives proved to be the most effective arena in which to make change. Swing Left aims to out-organize republicans and unify progressives who promote tolerance, equality, unity and fairness by targeting 52 Swing Districts (places where the last election was won by 15% of the vote or less).

They truly excel in specificity and serve up a user friendly map on their website where defeating GOP candidates could be a reality. In a time where feeling powerless and defeated is the norm, they’ve found opportunity for action. By teaming up and connecting with voters, progressives will have a better chance in 2018 to have the majority in one branch of government.

Go to the website www.swingleft.org and sign up with your email address to join a Swing District Team! You’ll work with others to get educated about the district, fundraise, be prompted to share on social media, volunteer, and attend events.

Don’t live in a swing district? Have no fear! The site acknowledges most of its users probably do not live in a targeted district. To this point, they offer opportunities to help from afar, identify easily traveled to districts, and help guide you on how to know more about your district anyway!


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Caralie Chrisco

Caralie is a talent manager, entrepreneur, part time playwright, and newbie politico currently residing in Brooklyn with her husband and pup.