Copy
Issue 4.0: Mnuchin, Climate Change, Obamacare Repeal and Delay
View in your browser
re:act is a weekly list of a few concrete things you can do to take action during the Trump presidency.

Missed a letter? See the full archive, or just last week’s issue. Also, there’s a new form where you can send action items my way.

That’s it for now. Let’s get to work:

1. “Trump’s Treasury Pick Steve Mnuchin Ran a Bank Critics Call 'A Foreclosure Machine'"

What’s happening:
After spending 17 years at Goldman Sachs, Mnuchin saw an opportunity when the recession hit, buying a failed bank named IndyMac and renaming it OneWest. The company then foreclosed on 36,000 homes. Bloomberg calculated that Mnuchin may have personally made more than $200 million in the venture which, among other things, filed to take a 90-year-old woman’s house after a 27-cent payment error. One Trump voter who lost her home to OneWest now says she “wishes she had not voted.” The Senate Finance Committee will be reviewing the President-elect's nomination, which is already facing headwinds.

What you can do: (10 minutes)
Check the Finance Committee roster to see if your home state Senator is on it, find their phone number here, and call them. A staffer will pick up your call. State your message on Mnuchin simply , and preferably with a line or two about how foreclosures have affected you or your community. Example: “In a time when Americans feel the odds stacked against them, a person who saw the recession as an opportunity to make money by foreclosing on families is the wrong choice to lead the Treasury.”

Here are a few pivotal Senators on the committee who represent some states with the highest rates of foreclosures in October 2016

  1. Robert Menendez (D, NJ — #2 in foreclosures): 202–224–4744
  2. Tim Scott (R, SC — #5 in foreclosures): 202–224–6121
  3. Dean Heller (R, NV — #6 in foreclosures): 202–224–6244
  4. Rob Portman (R, OH—#8 in foreclosures): 202–224–3353
  5. Johnny Isakson (R, GA—#10 in foreclosures): 202–224–3643

2. "Donald Trump meets with Al Gore on climate change"

What’s happening:
“President-elect Donald Trump met on Monday with Al Gore — one of the most vocal advocates of fighting climate change … Trump has been skeptical of climate change, tweeting in 2012 that global warming was “created” by the Chinese. He also called it a “hoax” in several public statements and in a 2014 tweet about a cold winter.”

It’s tempting to believe that the President-elect will use this issue to buck his party and prove his maverick bonafides . If it materializes, that position should be greeted with open arms.  But his EPA transition is still run by Myron Ebell, the prominent climate change denier who is “lukewarm on the existence of the EPA in the first place.”

What you can do: (6 minutes)
Contact Donald Trump’s transition team directly. The team has a contact form asking citizens how to make America great. One way is by living in a country that abides by the Paris Accords, which 71% of Americans support. (For those with privacy concerns, please be aware that you’ll be submitting your info to the next administration)

Use this map to find a local chapter of 350*, a global grassroots climate movement, and view upcoming events and news.

Download the Climate Reality Project’s Action Kit (.PDF): It contains call scripts, sample letters to the editor, and sample social media posts

3. “G.O.P. Plans Immediate Repeal of Health Law, Then a Delay”

What’s happening:
This emerging “repeal and delay” strategy underscores a growing recognition that replacing the health care law will be technically complicated and could be politically explosive ... It is not sheer coincidence that at least one idea envisions putting the effective date well beyond the midterm congressional elections in 2018.” — NYT

The Congressional Budget Office estimates that 22 million Americans will lose health coverage in a repeal effort. That doesn't include changes to Medicare and Medicaid, which are also on the table. As none other than Ann Coulter said, “Medicare IS NOT WHAT THE ELECTION WAS FOUGHT OVER. If Ryan wants to change Medicare, then run for president on that and see how far you get.”

What you can do: (8 minutes)
Call your representative. Only 1 in 4 Americans are now in favor of repeal, and with only 51 seats in the Senate, the GOP does not have a lot of room to maneuver.

Three specific members of Congress to highlight are below. If you are their constituent, share your Obamacare/Medicare story. If you aren’t, look up a friend who is and ask them to reach out. Then call your own rep.

4. “Flynn under fire for fake news”

What’s happening:
“A shooting at a D.C. pizza restaurant is stoking criticism of the conspiracy theories being spread by Donald Trump’s pick for national security adviser.

Flynn, who has 106,000 Twitter followers, has used the platform to retweet accusations that Clinton is involved with child sex trafficking and has “secretly waged war” on the Catholic Church, as well as charges that Obama is a “jihadi” who “laundered” money for Muslim terrorists.” His son, Michael G. Flynn, was recently dismissed for similar activity. 

What you can do: (6 minutes)
Call your representative and ask them to condemn Flynn’s dangerous use of misinformation and to publicly ask the President-elect to rescind the appointment.

Like the Comet Pizza Facebook page, and post a comment showing solidarity. If you’re in the D.C. area, grab a meal there or leave a positive review on Yelp if you’ve dined there before.

5. “Trump’s Lies About Voter Fraud Are Already Leading to New Voter-Suppression Efforts"

What’s happening:
"Less than a month after Donald Trump unexpectedly carried Michigan by 10,000 votes, Republicans in the state legislature are already pushing to make it harder to vote. The presidential recount hasn’t even finished yet and Michigan Republicans are trying to pass a strict voter-ID law through the lame-duck legislative session before the end of this year.  

“Donald Trump tweeted that millions had voted illegally and 48 hours later this bill popped up out of nowhere,” says Dan Korobkin, deputy legal director for the Michigan ACLU.

What you can do: (2-8 minutes)
Michigan residents: Call your state legislature using this guide.
Others (particularly New Hampshire, North Carolina, Texas, and Wisconsin): Find your local ACLU chapter and/or sign up with the League of Women Voters to Stop Suppression

Previous actions:

11/30/2016 — re:act → Voting Rights, Refugees, DeVos
11/22/2016 — re:act → Foster Campbell, Conflicts of Interest, Russia
11/15/2016 — re:act → Bannon, Deportations, Hate Crimes

Also on the radar:  


Finally, I want to mention something, even if it’s not my beat.

In North Dakota, a group of people stood for months, through rubber bullets and pepper spray, through water cannons that sent 26 people to the hospital with bone fractures or hypothermia, through 141 arrests. The Standing Rock Sioux were joined by students, retirees, activists, and over 2,000 veterans. They peacefully held their ground against every layer of power imaginable: big business, local/state/federal government, and law enforcement. And because they didn’t stand down, those powers finally did.

Their fight continues, but it can only be viewed as a victory for now. For the rest of us, it’s a fresh example of the lasting power of a small group of people who organize and fight for what matters to them.

I hope you’ll think of them as you continue your work.

Thank you,
Derek

Editor's note: This list is not meant to be authoritative, exhaustive, or even expert. I'm just a guy letting you know some things I am doing every week.  I'd love for those with more legislative experience to recommend better levers to pull. I'd love for you to point out what I missed, because I will definitely miss things. 

Please send ideas or stories of your involvement ​my way at derek@reactletter.com
Share
Tweet
Forward
Follow @derekcnel for updates
Share the URL to Sign Up
Copyright © 2016 re:act, All rights reserved.


Want to change how you receive these emails?
You can update your preferences or unsubscribe from this list