Two days ago, in a round of calls to my representatives asking them to vocally organize against Bannon, I talked to an employee of incoming Congressman Adriano Espaillat named Martin Smith. When I said what I was calling about he literally burst out laughing at me, and said there was very little they could do. The congressman would decide the best way to respond. He then told me we needed realism right now. He had taken six constituent calls that morning, and had already told a woman worried about her son, an (undocumented?) immigrant who had been in trouble for drugs already, that there was very little they could do for her son. I tried to communicate that my state of mind was not exactly optimistic at this moment, but that that didn’t argue for defeatism. He gave me the an email address to use to express my concerns. So Espaillat has someone working for him who is just telling all callers that we’re all screwed. I mean, we are, but only behaving like it is possible for us to exercise power will ever create that possibility.
So let’s do that! I think Bannon is a very important target for organizing right now. It seems at least possible to win, and in so doing to send a message that there are limits. If Bannon stays, it bodes ill, to put it mildly. Some things you can do are: call your reps and urge them to be very forceful in denouncing him, if they have not already, or thank them if they have. Contact journalists and media outlets who use normalizing or “both sides do it” language about him. If you know influential people, reach out to them, and ask them to speak out against him.
Below the fold, more detailed recommendations from some provenance I don’t know, but I think they’re good.
On my list for immediately after class this afternoon: Cut & paste to share: PLEASE SHARE WIDELY!
#stopbannon DAY 3: NEW ACTION STEPS
We are making great progress — over 150 members of Congress have now called for the appointment of white supremacist Steve Bannon to be rescinded — but there is still work to be done and we can’t let up. Here are some ideas for today.
1) As far as I’m aware no GOP leaders have come out against Bannon. Let’s contact them, starting with those who have criticized Trump, and urge them to do so. Republican pressure is going to be important. Here is a partial contact list:
Sen Jeff Flake 202-224-4521
Sen John McCain 202-224-2235
Sen Ben Sasse 202-224-4224
Sen Mike Lee 202-224-5444
Rep. Mia Love (202) 225-3011
2) Some key Democratic leaders have now spoken out to denounce his views, but that is not enough. Several of them have made frustratingly bland statements and they need to be urged to call for his removal. Bannon has zero place in our government. Urge them to join their many colleagues, like Harry Reid, Barbara Lee, Jeff Merkeley, and Ron Wyden and others, who have demanded his immediate removal.
Sen Kirsten Gillibrand 202-224-4451
Sen. Chuck Schumer: 202-224-6542
Sen. Elizabeth Warren: 202-224-4543
Sen. Bernie Sanders: 202-224-5141
Rep. Nancy Pelosi: 202-225-4965
Rep. James Clyburn: 202-225-3315
3) Continue to call and/or fax your representatives and senators to say that Bannon’s appointment is completely unacceptable. If they have already called for the appointment to be rescinded, thank them for speaking out.
4) House Speaker Paul Ryan and Majority Leader Mitch McConnell are trying to avoid commenting on this issue. Let’s keep the pressure on them. McConnell looked awkward and silent when asked about this yesterday and Ryan refused to criticize him.
Speaker Paul Ryan (202) 225-3031
Majority Leader McConnell, (202) 224-2541
*They are making it difficult to get through so be persistent. Call their local offices if necessary.
5) Reach out to any people of influence you know – faith leaders, community leaders, college presidents, you name it – and ask them to speak out publicly in favor of Bannon’s removal.
6) Contact any media source that you see normalizing the Bannon appointment by failing to call him what he is: a white supremacist, anti-Semite, and misogynist. At the same time, publicize the many strong stories that are increasingly appearing, like the Chicago Tribune editorial, “Keep Steve Bannon, Professional Bigot, Out of the White House.”
We can do this — we need to #stopBannon, and we need this win. #blockBannon #firebannon