This has been a tough weekend. Make sure you rest well, stay hydrated, and experience joy somewhere, so you can stay strong. And most of all, remember our efforts are not for naught. We’re doing great work, resistors. We are making progress, even if it is in tiny doses. It’s easy to lose sight of that, because we are losing so many big battles. Expect to lose, but not to be totally dominated and trampled over. Be proud of small victories and let them fuel your momentum. Here is some of what we’ve been accomplishing.
We’ve put adequate pressure on Congress to craft a replacement for Obamacare before they repeal.
- At this point, the mainstream conversation among Congressional Republicans actually includes replacing Obamacare, rather than repeal and delay.
- We shouted, and with their eyes on their future election runs, they are pushing for a replacement.
- Rewind to 2010 and then the rest of Obama’s presidency, when there was talk about government “death panels” and other absurd arguments against the very fiber of socialized healthcare. The arguments were ideological: that it was un-American, Communist, Socialist, Fascist, etc. to have government-subsidized healthcare. Look at us now.
- Congress has been unable to draft legislation to repeal Obamacare by their own deadline, which was January 27th. Now it’s in the “200 Day Plan.”
- We need to keep the pressure on about tying the repeal to a replacement.
- If the repeal and replacement are tied together, many Senate conservatives will not be on board. If it does not offer the benefits Obamacare did, liberals will oppose it. This could hang it in the balance indefinitely, keeping it mostly in tact as is.
- At their retreat last week, it was leaked that they are both aware and afraid of the political consequences when they mess with Obamacare, and also voice concerns about defunding Planned Parenthood.
- LA Senator Bill Cassidy and ME Senator Susan Collins introduced a “compromise” that would give some control of this to the states, and most significantly allow them to keep their Obamacare.
- This will keep Obamacare alive. If your state doesn’t have it, others will, and you can still push via local and statewide avenues to join because the program will be in place. This will make the “repeal” of Obamacare much more temporary.
- There are some problematic provisions in there, such as removing the pre-existing conditions piece, the anti-discrimination piece (so women cannot cost more than men) and the limit on the premiums of elderly patients. So when we get close to this vote, we must pressure our representatives to negotiate these changes out.
Republicans were unable to bust Trump’s Cabinet picks through approval via chaos, like they intended to. Cabinet nominees only require 51 votes in the Senate; the following victories mean that the Republicans in control have been listening.
- Hearings ended up being postponed and delayed so that the appropriate committee members could actually attend them (many of them were scheduled concurrently to prevent appropriate scrutiny).
- Despite Republicans being very irritated about it, Trump has started his presidency with one of the most understaffed teams in history. Make no mistake, he will get picks in there eventually (maybe all of the current nominees, maybe not). The delay proves that he cannot sidestep scrutiny.
- Votes were delayed on Jeff Sessions and Betsy Devos, two of the most dangerous nominees to the Cabinet on domestic issues. When we said, “you need to further investigate these guys”, Congress was listening.
- Of course, all the picks could very well go through. We could lose this battle. But the point is that Republicans, who had the political capital (and presidential support) to do this the wrong way, were forced to back off.
We participated in the largest protest in US history. Simultaneously, we have offended Trump’s fragile, fragile ego.
- We have shown how quickly we can get ourselves organized, and how serious we are.
- We dwarfed Trump’s Inauguration, both in media coverage, and in number of attendees, and he’s insecure about it.
- We’ve set the stage for other protests focusing on different areas of Trump’s tyranny, including a Tax Day protest, a Pride March on Washington, a Scientist protest, a Juggalo March (ha!)..I’m sure there are more. (Let’s not forget to keep paying attention to Black Lives Matter).
a thousand years ago at the beginning of January when Congress tried to neutralize the independent Office of Congressional Ethics? We stopped that.
- You might be tempted to give Trump credit for that, but he only criticized the optics of the timing (which, to be fair, made the whole move incredibly stupid). While this might have caused the House Republicans to abandon ship (for now), it was the uproar from his very supporters that caused him to interfere.
- Also, notice that was a group that watches CONGRESS, not the President. He has every reason to support scrutiny of Congress.
- We ruined what should have been a very exciting first day for Congress by bombarding our House reps with angry voices.
This weekend, we flooded airports and mobilized our legal minds to combat this Muslim ban, and, with the help of the ACLU, we have chipped away at it.
Stay strong. All the accomplishments above don’t secure our situation, but they do prove that our massive movement has legs. They prove to the rest of us that we have brothers and sisters on our side. They prove to the most marginalized people that we will not abandon them in their time of need. They prove to the world that Trump and Bannon do not represent us. Keep resisting.