Monday, September 18, 2017

Tell the Senate: Ban this extremely toxic brain-harming pesticide

The petition to the Senate reads:
"Chlorpyrifos, the toxic insecticide that damages the developing brains of children and infants, has been banned for home use since 2001, yet millions of pounds are still sprayed on crops, threatening farmworkers, rural children and our food supply. Pass the 'Protect Children, Farmers and Farmworkers from Nerve Agent Pesticides Act' to ban the use of chlorpyrifos in food."
Add your name:
Sign the petition ►

Despite overwhelming scientific evidence, climate-denier Scott Pruitt and his polluter-friendly Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) refused earlier this year to ban chlorpyrifos – the extremely toxic pesticide linked to a whole host of debilitating neurological disorders, long-term damage to children's brains and even cancer.
Chlorpyrifos is so dangerous that the EPA banned the toxin for home use nearly two decades ago, yet Big Ag still sprays nearly 10 million pounds of the chemical on crops across the country, which poses a major health risk to farmworkers — many of whom are immigrants — and children in rural communities.
Since the EPA would rather give handouts to the chemical industry than protect consumers, farmworkers and children, a group of Democratic senators have introduced the "Protect Children, Farmers and Farmworkers from Nerve Agent Pesticides Act" to completely prohibit the use of chlorpyrifos in food. We must demand the Senate act immediately to pass this critical legislation.
Chlorpyrifos is the most widely used insecticide in the world and belongs to the same family as sarin nerve gas.1 People who have been exposed to the chemical have experienced permanent changes in brain structure, loss of IQ, increased likelihood of children developing ADHD or other developmental and behavioral disorders, reduced lung function, asthma, and cancer.2
In 2015, President Obama's EPA proposed banning chlorpyrifos for all agricultural use, but earlier this year, Donald Trump's anti-science, pro-industry EPA administrator, Scott Pruitt, well-known for denying climate change, reversed that decision, claiming the science behind the chemical's toxic effects were inconclusive.3 Media reports at the time suggest Dow Chemical, the major manufacturer of chlorpyrifos, played a significant role influencing Pruitt's decision.4
Activism to force lawmakers to more strictly regulate chlorpyrifos is working – but we can't stop now. This summer, CREDO, along with our allies at the Pesticide Action Network, Friends of the Earth and other organizations, delivered more than 167,000 petition signatures urging California Gov. Jerry Brown to ban this pesticide. In response, California regulators are drafting new rules for chlorpyrifos use.5
That's why we must now call on the Senate to pass this bill to protect the developing brains of small children, the health and safety of farmers and farmworkers, and our food supply from this dangerous and extremely toxic pesticide immediately.
Tell the Senate: Ban toxic chlorpyrifos now. Click the link below to sign the petition:
- Josh Nelson, Deputy Political Director
CREDO Action from Working Assets
Add your name:
Sign the petition ►
References
  1. Zoë Schlanger, "The US government is ignoring its own scientists’ warning that a Dow pesticide causes brain damage in children," Quartz, March 30, 2017.
  2. Pesticide Action Network, "Chlorpyrifos," accessed Aug. 29, 2017.
  3. Eric Lipton, "E.P.A. Chief, Rejecting Agency’s Science, Chooses Not to Ban Insecticide," The New York Times, March 29, 2017.
  4. Lorraine Chow, "EPA Chief Met With Dow Chemical CEO Before Deciding Not to Ban Toxic Pesticide," EcoWatch, June 28, 2017.
  5. The Associated Press, "California tightens rules on popular pesticide for farmers," Aug. 18, 2017.

Tell the Senate: No Wall Street lawyer as Fed watchdog


Petition to the U.S. Senate:

"Oppose the nomination of Randal Quarles, a Wall Street lawyer who helped create too-big-to-fail banks, and any Federal Reserve nominee like Quarles who opposes common-sense rules protecting Americans from financial wrongdoing and the Federal Reserve’s responsibility to create full employment."

Add your name:



Randal Quarles has spent 30 years spinning in the revolving door between Washington and Wall Street. He helped create too-big-to-fail banks and personally profited from the bailouts, but now wants to slash banking rules.2,3 No wonder Sen. Elizabeth Warren calls Quarles “a dangerous choice” to be Federal Reserve vice chairman of supervision.4The Wall Street stooge in the White House has struck again by trying to fill the position of top watchdog overseeing big banks at the Federal Reserve with a lifelong Wall Street lawyer.1

A shocking number of Democrats sided with Senate Banking Committee Republicans to approve Quarles, including corporate Democrats like Sens. Mark Warner and Heidi Heitkamp but also Sen. Chris Van Hollen. We badly need to ratchet up the pressure before a full Senate vote to make it clear that Quarles is an unacceptable choice to be the Fed banking watchdog.

Tell the Senate: No Wall Street lawyer as Fed watchdog. Click here to sign the petition.

Sen. Warren said that Quarles is “straight off the Wall Street assembly line.”5 In the Quarles’ nomination hearing, she didn’t hold back:6

"You’ve got 15 years representing big banks at a New York law firm working on some of the mergers that created the too-big-to-fail banks that we have today… You have two stints at the Treasury Department, including shortly before the 2008 crisis where you insisted the banks were well capitalized enough to survive a housing downturn… and more than a decade in private equity and investment management where you’ve argued repeatedly for weaker rules for the biggest banks… That’s not a track record that should give Americans a whole lot of confidence in you."

On top of it all, our friends at the Fed Up coalition note that Quarles wants the Federal Reserve to set interest rates according to a technical rule that ignores the reality of the tough job market, instead of focusing on the Fed’s mandate to achieve full employment. A Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis study says that this rule would have cost as many as 2.5 million jobs.7

In short, Quarles helped banks get bigger while consistently opposing tough rules to rein them in – and wants interest-rate policy to help Wall Street instead of working Americans.

Tell the Senate: No Wall Street lawyer as Fed watchdog. Click here to sign the petition.

At one point, Quarles worked in private equity, and his firm’s investments in troubled banks earned hundreds of millions of dollars. If not for government bailouts, those profits in Quarles’ pockets would never have happened.8 He’s exactly the wrong choice to be in the incredibly powerful position of vice chair of supervision, overseeing all of the Federal Reserve’s regulation of big banks.

Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen’s term is also set to expire soon, and no one knows whom Trump might nominate or whom the senate would approve. Our opposition to Quarles will make it clear that people like this – who pad their bank accounts making banks bigger while putting the rest of us in danger – have no place in important Federal Reserve positions. A full Senate vote on Quarles’ confirmation could come any day now, so we need to speak out immediately.

Tell the Senate: No Wall Street lawyer as Fed watchdog. Click the link below to sign the petition:


- Murshed Zaheed, Political Director
CREDO Action from Working Assets

References:
Daniel Marans, “How Trump’s Pick To Police Wall Street Endangers The Economy,” HuffPo, July 12, 2017.
Ibid.
Olivia Oran and Pete Schroeder, “Trump's Fed nominee has history of benefiting from bailouts,” Reuters, July 12, 2017.
Marans, “How Trump’s Pick To Police Wall Street Endangers The Economy.”
Oran and Schroeder, “Trump's Fed nominee has history of benefiting from bailouts.”
Pedro Nicolaci da Costa, “Elizabeth Warren unloads on Trump's pick to lead Fed bank regulation,” Business Insider, July 27, 2017.
Center for Popular Democracy and the Fed Up Coalition, “Letter of Opposition to Randal Quarles as Federal Reserve Vice Chair for Supervision,” July 20, 2017.
Oran and Schroeder, “Trump's Fed nominee has history of benefiting from bailouts.

Stop Trump's revolving door. Sign the petition: Tell your senator to vote NO on Trump’s nominee for the DOJ Antitrust division.


Trump may have campaigned on “draining the swamp” but his political appointments have been more of the same D.C. “revolving door.”

This time Trump’s pick for top lawyer for the Department of Justice’s Antitrust division, Makan Delrahim, is a corporate attorney turned lobbyist who’s made his career on advancing corporate mega-mergers.1

Sign the petition: Tell your senator to vote NO on Trump’s nominee for the DOJ Antitrust division.

Petition to the US Senate:

Trump’s pick to lead the DOJ’s Antitrust division is a career corporate merger lawyer who has lobbied in favor of corporate mergers that create de facto monopolies and squeeze consumers while fattening the pockets of corporate shareholders. Vote NO on Makan Delrahim’s nomination.

The DOJ’s Antitrust division is supposed to protect consumers like us from the monopolies created by mega-corporate mergers. Like the proposed AT&T Time Warner merger which would create a “too big too fail” media gatekeeper that could threaten consumer choice and the free flow of information on the internet.

Instead of looking out for consumers, Trump wants to install a lobbyist with decades of experience advocating for Wall Street mergers.

For instance, up until 2008, Delrahim represented telecom giant AT&T. As the top lawyer for the Department of Justice’s Antitrust division, he would now be responsible for overseeing a merger deal between AT&T (his former client) and Time Warner, a deal that would give one media company “control over the pipes and what flows through them.”2

Senator Elizabeth Warren called this “the latest edition of the fox guarding the henhouse.”3 And she’s exactly right. Mergers and monopolies are garnering more and more attention, especially from Democrats, for their role in furthering income inequality, driving down innovation, and setting up barriers for start ups to compete. That’s why the Democrat’s new platform, “A Better Deal,” explicitly calls for strong antitrust policies.

And if a corporate-friendly lawyer-turned-lobbyist turns into the head of the antitrust division, we’ll see even more mega-mergers like the AT&T Time Warner merger.

We need the DOJ to stand up and protect us from Wall Street’s abuses, not rubberstamp mergers so their old corporate buddies fatten their wallets while squeezing consumers.

Tell your senator: Vote NO on Delrahim nomination to lead the DOJ’s Antitrust division.

- Demand Action

Sources:
1. The Huffington Post, "Trump’s Antitrust Nominee, Rife With Conflicts, Puts Democrats To The Test," August 25, 2017.
2. Ibid
3. The New Republic, "Democrats Face an Important Anti-Monopoly Test," September 6, 201

Beyond calling our senators, what can we do to stop this cruel healthcare bill?


The Republicans want you to believe that their plan to repeal the Affordable Care Act is dead. They want to slip in below the radar and take one more run at repealing health care coverage for millions of Americans.

Here’s the reason they are moving now: Senate Republicans have until September 30th to repeal the Affordable Care Act with only 50 votes.

And here’s the scary fact: They just might have the votes to do it.

The Cassidy-Graham bill that the Republicans pulled out of the trash is their worst “health care” bill yet.
  • It guts funding for Medicaid – so if you need a nursing home or your baby is born with complex medical needs, you’re on your own.

  • It rolls back protections for people with pre-existing conditions – so if you have a heart attack or get a cancer diagnosis, too bad.

  • And it completely eliminates help for families to buy health insurance – so if you can’t afford health insurance, good luck out there.
Make no mistake: This Cassidy-Graham “health care” bill is Trumpcare on steroids – and millions of Americans will lose their health care if the Republicans pass this piece of garbage in the next 11 days.

Remember everything you did to stop the Republicans from repealing the Affordable Care Act seven weeks ago? We need you to do it again.
  1. Share your story again about why the Affordable Care Act or Medicaid matters to you or someone you love. Email it to your friends and family. Post it on Facebook or Twitter. Take a photo or record a video on your phone.

  2. Our Senate Democrats are still united against this bill – but if you have family or friends who live in a state with a Republican senator, make sure they know what’s happening to health care this week. Call, text, email, message – check in and then spread the word.

  3. Join a group. If you belong to an organization that has been fighting to save the Affordable Care Act, keep your eyes peeled. If you don’t belong to a group, find one. Organizations will be holding events, making calls, sharing content, and keeping people informed about what’s going on. Two voices are more than twice as powerful as one. Ten voices are more than ten times as powerful. And thousands – even millions – of voices working together can stop this ugly bill. Don’t delete all those emails.

Call now: Health care repeal is back



Trumpcare is back. Also known as "Graham-Cassidy." Republican Senators Lindsey Graham, Bill Cassidy, Dean Heller, and Ron Johnson have introduced a new bill that would repeal the Affordable Care Act and take away health care from tens of millions of Americans. That's why every Republican senator needs to hear from constituents today—and every day—until this bill is defeated.

Will you call Senators John McCain and Jeff Flake now and tell them to protect our care? Tell them to vote no on Graham-Cassidy.
"
Here is where to call: 
  • Senator John McCain
    • Phoenix, AZ: 602-952-2410
    • Prescott, AZ: 928-445-0833
    • Tucson, AZ: 520-670-6334
  • Senator Jeff Flake
Washington Offices
  • Sen. McCain - (202) 224-2235
  • Sen. Flake - (202) 224-4521
This repeal proposal is being called "the most radical one yet."1

The news media is not yet taking this effort seriously, with most calling it dead on arrival, but Sen. Cassidy is saying he is already close to securing 50 votes.2 Plus, Donald Trump has said that repealing the ACA is a priority, and that he's prepared to sign this bill into law. They're trying to sneak this bill through Congress before the end of the month, which is the deadline for repeal to require only 50 votes.3 These next 12 days are make-or-break for what could be the final Republican attempt to take away our health care.

We've defeated Trumpcare over and over, and now we need to do it one more time by raising a deafening roar against any plan that would take away health care, cut Medicaid, and drive up insurance premiums.

Will you call your senators right now and say, "Don't take away our health care. Say no to Graham-Cassidy or any version of Trumpcare."?

We have stopped this trainwreck before, and we need to spot it again. We know that grassroots pressure works. If this bill moves forward, we'll rally, make phone calls, and fight tooth and nail against it. Let's start by raising an outcry to let every Republican senator know that we're watching, and that we will hold them accountable.

-MoveOn 

Sources: 
1. "Republicans wind up one last Hail Mary to repeal Obamacare," Vox, September 12, 2017
https://act.moveon.org/go/14513?t=15&akid=189887%2E18315738%2E8rrtgX
2. "Bill Cassidy says Obamacare overhaul bill is close to 50 votes," Washington Examiner, September 15, 2017
http://act.moveon.org/go/14514?t=17&akid=189887%2E18315738%2E8rrtgX
3. "Trump says 'inaction is not an option' after GOP senators unveil last-gasp Obamacare repeal plan," CNBC, September 13, 2017
https://act.moveon.org/go/14515?t=19&akid=189887%2E18315738%2E8rrtgX

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Sign if you agree: Hands off our public lands

The petition to the U.S. House reads:
"Oppose H.R. 2423, which would threaten Utah's Red Cliffs Conservation Area, and any other legislation that would allow development, mining, drilling or fracking in conservation areas, national parks or other public lands."
Add your name:
Sign the petition ►
The right-wing founder of the congressional anti-parks caucus, Utah Rep. Chris Stewart, has introduced dangerous legislation that would allow development of utilities and roads directly through the pristine Red Cliffs National Conservation Area, which would threaten the endangered Mojave Desert tortoise and literally pave the way for a future of unmitigated development and drilling in this protected region.Donald Trump's campaign to hand over national parks, monuments and other public lands to developers and the fossil fuel industry could get another boost very soon.
Rep. Stewart is moving quickly to pass this bill or quietly sneak it into a larger legislative package with little notice. We must act now to shine a light on this legislation and demand that Congress reject this attempt to seize federal land and threaten endangered species.
A long-time climate denier and former CEO of an energy sector firm, Rep. Stewart has spent his political career working to hand over federal lands to the oil and gas industry.1 During his 2012 run for Congress, he was called "Glenn Beck on steroids" and received significant funding from the Koch brothers and ExxonMobil while campaigning on the promise to allow drilling for fossil fuels on public lands, claiming "de-federalizing public lands is vital to a coherent energy strategy."2,3,4
In Congress, Stewart has been staunchly anti-government and anti-public lands, supporting legislation to block the creation of national monuments and sponsoring bills that chip away control of federal lands — in order to give more access to the fossil fuel industry. In 2014, Stewart even seemed to sympathize with anti-government rancher Cliven Bundy after his extremist militia pointed loaded rifles at federal government employees.5
If Congress passes his bill, the endangered desert tortoise will be under major threat, but Rep. Stewart doesn't seem to care much for endangered species, either. Since he was first elected, Rep. Stewart has waged a vocal campaign against endangered species, praised the de-listing of the grey wolf, introduced legislation to prevent the listing of the sage grouse, and even sponsored a bill to that would undermine the Endangered Species Act altogether.6
It's abundantly clear that Rep. Stewart's legislation is another attempt to strip away federal control of public lands and hand it over to the fossil fuel industry for unfettered development. We can't let that happen.
Tell Congress: Don't give away Utah's Red Cliffs Conservation Area. Click the link below to sign the petition:
- Josh Nelson, Deputy Political Director
CREDO Action from Working Assets
Add your name:
Sign the petition ►
References
  1. Jesse Coleman, "Congressman and climate science denier Chris Stewart faced with climate change facts," Greenpeace, April 5, 2013.
  2. Tim Murphy, "Utah Set to Send Glenn Beck-Approved End Times Novelist to Congress," Mother Jones, Sept. 25, 2012.
  3. On the Issues, "Chris Stewart on Energy & Oil," accessed Sept. 9, 2017.
  4. PolluterWatch, "Chris Stewart," accessed Sept. 9, 2017.
  5. Thomas Burr, "Utah's Stewart: BLM doesn't need a 'SWAT team'," The Salt Lake Tribune, April 30, 2014.
  6. Vote Smart, "Chris Stewart's Public Statements on Issue: Animals and Wildlife," accessed Sept. 9, 2017.

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Show you care! Demand universal health care



Republican senators have proposed yet another behind-closed-doors attempt to repeal the Affordable Care Act. It’s distressing that some Members of Congress are hell-bent on betraying their constituents just so their rich donors can get some tax breaks.

But I know that with your help, we will defeat it just like we defeated all other attempts.

Senator Bernie Sanders and 15 co-sponsors have introduced a sensible plan to provide the universal access to health care we desperately need. It’s past time for all elected officials to get on board.

Please urge your senators to join Sen. Bernie Sanders in sponsoring a universal health care plan today!

Nearly 30 million people currently lack health care coverage, primarily low-income communities of color. Sen. Sanders has rightly called the gaps in coverage a “national emergency” and a “moral outrage.”

Thanks to the massive public mobilization against Trumpcare, the Republican scheme to strip health care coverage from millions more has collapsed.

Now is the time to leverage our victory and fight for, and win, universal health care. We all have the right to health care, no matter how much money we have, no matter our employment status. It's time for single-payer Medicare-for-All.

Tell your senators to co-sponsor Medicare-for-All legislation now!

Here are the numbers to call:

Senator John McCain
Phoenix, AZ: 602-952-2410
Prescott, AZ: 928-445-0833
Tucson, AZ: 520-670-6334

Senator Jeff Flake
Phoenix, AZ: 602-840-1891
Tucson, AZ: 520-575-8633

-Jennifer Flynn
Director of Healthcare Justice, CPD Action