Updates on primaries and the coronavirus
Hi <<First Name>>,

What a difference a week makes! At this time last week, there were six serious contenders for the Democratic nomination. Now there are two. The winnowing of the field was unavoidable and having only two candidates this early in the nominating process is probably a benefit to the eventual nominee.

I do find it somewhat unsettling that our resistance, powered largely by women and minorities, is now hanging its hopes of defeating President Trump on two, nearly-80-year-old white men. Nevertheless, we will keep fighting for the change that our country so desperately needs.

That said, Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders would make far better presidents than Trump, and Indivisible Montgomery will support whoever wins the nomination. Both have a good chance of winning in November, but only if we put in the work! Scroll down to the Elections section to find out how you can get involved.

Governor Larry Hogan confirmed the first three cases of COVID-19 in Maryland last week, and all three people are residents of Montgomery County. Related to this, the Montgomery County Council issued a notice that anyone who was sitting shiva at The Village in Rockville on Friday, Feb. 28, between noon and 6pm may have been exposed to the virus. They suggest monitoring yourself for symptoms and contacting 410-517-3720 with questions.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has advised that anyone who is part of an at-risk population, defined as adults over 60 or those with chronic, severe medical conditions, should do their best to avoid crowds and take other commonsense precautions.

Beyond this, it is best to stay calm and informed. The CDC, the National Institutes of Health, the World Health Organization and our local and state health officials are trustworthy, and I recommend you check their websites whenever you have concerns or questions. This resource from The Washington Post is also worthwhile. The White House continues to not be a trustworthy source of information.

As of now, all of our in-person events and meetings will go on as scheduled. We are already considering alternatives to in-person meetings should there be evidence of community spread in Montgomery County and we will let you know should we need to change plans.

The next Indivisible Montgomery meeting will be on Saturday, Mar. 21, at Gaithersburg library from 10:30am to 12:30pm. After a brief discussion, Virginia Canter of CREW will speak about their recent report on Trump-Proofing the Presidency. And, of course, we will write letters to voters!
Chris Pickett
This week! (Indivisible Montgomery events in bold)
  • Tuesday, Mar. 10: Indivisible Montgomery day of action! Scripts in your inbox tomorrow morning.
  • Thursday, Mar. 12 - 22: The Environmental Film Festival in the Nation's Capital. Information here.
  • Sunday, Mar. 15: The Indivisible Montgomery Hearings and Public Events committee will meet at 3:30pm. Contact Susan if you are interested.
  • Sunday, Mar. 15: The next Democratic presidential debate. Et tu?
Recurring events
  • Do The Write Thing letter-writing events are taking place on a weekly basis. Scroll down to the Elections section of this newsletter for more information.
  • The Kremlin Annex protest, which started after the disastrous Helsinki summit, is still going strong! Join them on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays from 7:30 to 9pm in front of the White House.
Upcoming notable events
  • Mar. 21: Indivisible Montgomery monthly meeting with Virginia Canter of CREW. We will be at the Gaithersburg library from 10:30am to 12:30pm. Note new date!
  • Apr. 16-23: Maryland primary early voting!
  • Apr. 28: Maryland primary!
Hearings and Events
The Hearings and Public Events committee leads Indivisible Montgomery delegations to the Hill to attend various hearings and other events. Originally the Conflicts of Interest committee, this group still focuses on issues around corruption in the administration and is branching out to take advantage of other opportunities to attend important Hill briefings and events.

In light of all the interest in the coronavirus outbreak, this week's hearings calendar highlights several congressional hearings on this topic. If you're interested but can't attend, video for many hearings can be accessed here:

Hearings calendar
  • Tuesday, Mar. 10: The House Homeland Security committee will host "Community perspectives on coronavirus preparedness and response" at 2pm in 310 Cannon.
  • Wednesday, Mar. 11: The House Oversight and Reform committee will host "Coronavirus preparedness and response" at 9:30am in 2154 Rayburn.
What we're reading:
  • The president is winning his war on American institutions (The Atlantic)
  • Newly obtained documents show $157,000 in additional payments by the Secret Service to Trump properties (The Washington Post)
  • Jared Kushner sells stake in company using tax breaks that he lobbied for (MarketWatch)
Regulatory Changes
The Regulatory Changes committee, formerly the Environment and Science committee, has extensive experience responding to the Trump administration's all-out assault on environmental regulations. Now they are expanding their scope to cover regulatory changes across the federal government. This committee will write responses to proposed regulatory changes that all Indivisible Montgomery members can use to push back against Trump's regulatory rollback.

The Regulatory Changes committee is currently drafting comments on several regulatory actions, including the standards for lead in drinking water and proposed changes to the NEPA regulations. If you'd like to get involved, contact Angela.

What we're reading:
  • EPA updates plan to limit science used in environmental rules (The New York Times)
  • Judge voids nearly 1 million acres of oil and gas leases, saying Trump policy undercut public input (The Washington Post)
  • Science advisers slam EPA’s new stream and wetland protection rule (Science)
The Elections committee is the focal point of all of Indivisible Montgomery's elections activities. This committee also collaborates with other resistance groups in the community to ensure we maximize our volunteer energy.

Want to do something now to defeat Trump? Join your fellow Indivisible Montgomery members in writing letters to likely Democratic but only occasional voters, saying why it's important to vote. We have lots of Indivisible Montgomery letter-writing house parties in March, so there's a time and place convenient for everyone. SIGN UP HERE - just scroll down to the IM events or sign up for other events hosted by one of our partner groups. Once you sign up, you'll received the details you need.

Bring your friends and family! If you'd like to help by hosting or leading some of these get-togethers, and you haven't told us that previously, please contact Steve. Thanks to all our great volunteer hosts and leads who make these events happen!

YesWeCanvass offers opportunities for voter registration and canvassing for state legislative races that could flip a legislature and contribute significantly to US Senate and Presidency efforts in those states. Their focus now is in Pennsylvania and North Carolina. Check them out here.
Allies for PA 2020 is organizing an army of Maryland volunteers to knock on tens of thousands of Democratic doors in Pennsylvania now till November for George Scott, who's running for Pennsylvania State Senate, candidates running for Pennsylvania seats in Congress, and for the eventual Democratic presidential nominee. Join them and bring a friend! They provide all training and materials. Carpools depart every Sunday in March and April from Parkton, MD, at 10am and return by 4pm. Sign up here.
Meet Rep. Lucy McBath at a fundraising event in Bethesda and help her turn Georgia blue! Rep. Jamie Raskin and others will speak. It's on Thursday, Mar. 26, from 7 to 8:30pm. For details, contact Joyce Siegel.
Indivisible Montgomery has an email group for people interested in voter registration events. If you would like to be included, please contact contact Valarie Barr. That group is again doing voter registration live and in-person at a table in Westfield Wheaton Mall on the first Friday evening and Saturday morning of every month. There are a few slots still open - if you're interested, you can get information and volunteer here.
We have an opportunity to set up a table at the Health Fair being organized by Impact Silver Spring on Saturday, April 4, 11:00am to 3:00pm, at Hughes United Methodist Church Parking Lot 10700 Georgia Ave, Wheaton. Bilingual volunteers would be especially appreciated at this event.  Contact Valarie or Stacey for more information.
In far too many districts around the country, no Democrats run in local elections. The result is lower turnout, which means that up-ballot congressional and statewide candidates get crushed – even when there are plenty of registered Democrats. You can help research which races around the country currently lack Democratic candidates and recruit strong, new candidates in key swing states. Learn more and volunteer with Contest Every Race here.
Texting is still gearing up, but this is a good time to learn how and give it a try. Texting is fast and effective, with a response rate of 10-24%, and you can do it from the comfort of your own home. A good place to start is DemandtheVote.
The Indivisible Payback Project is targeting your "favorite" nine Republican senators for payback, including McConnell, Graham, Collins, and Ernst. You can help defeat them by supporting critical organizing work in their states. Go here to learn how.
You can donate now to the eventual Dem nominee in a number of 2020 races. Funds like Ditch Mitch, Retake the Senate, or any of the SwingLeft funds are great ways to make sure your donations are used by Democrats in important races in November.
One important race that will be decided soon is the election for Wisconsin Supreme Court. An extreme right-wing judge is running against a liberal judge in a race that could bring the court close to tipping back toward liberal control next year. The election is Apr. 7 and you can make a difference in this critical race for the future of justice and democracy in WI by donating to Judge Jill Karofsky.

Want to donate or volunteer with a group fighting voter suppression or encouraging women to run for office? Check out this page with a short list of organizations that do that.
What we're reading:
  • Black voters, ‘Whole Foods moms’ and an anti-Trump base: Biden builds coalition that could boost Democrats in November (The Washington Post)
  • New batch of polling suggests Democrats could flip the Senate (Daily Kos)
  • Big tent: Joe and the juice (Crooked)
Your support for our work will be critical to making the change we need in 2020. Please consider giving to Indivisible Montgomery today!
And visit our website:
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