Thursday, July 8, 2010

War $ Not Passed Yet: VOTE NO

Just in from David Swanson (War is a Crime - formerly After Downing Street) Also see item from Peace Action below...

On July 1, the House sent a bill with $33 billion in war escalation funding in it back to the Senate, but with changes the Senate will have to deal with. There is a good chance the Senate will make changes and send it back to the House.

If that happens, we will be in a good position to stop it. Already last week the House was unable to pass war funding without Republican votes, and so passed it without technically voting on it at all. The vote on the Rule to create that crazy procedure, however, nearly failed despite the built-in excuses that (1) it was just a "procedural" vote and (2) it allowed votes on good amendments. This time, we'll be ready to confront that first excuse, and the second one won't be there.

Our message to congress members is simple, clear, moral, and urgent: VOTE NO. If good measures are included, VOTE NO. If it's merely a procedural vote, but the procedure facilitated by it is mass murder, VOTE NO.

We need to keep calling...whether this bill comes back to the House or not. There will be another one.

Capitol Hill Switchboard: (202) 224-3121



Make three one-minute phone calls to help end the war in Afghanistan

Most of Peace Action's supporters know it's past time to end the war in Afghanistan. As President Obama commits more and more troops and resources to this war, our fellow Americans are realizing this too. That's why Peace Action recently helped three Members of Congress to draft new legislation to bring an end to the war.

Senator Russ Fiengold, Representative Jim McGovern, and Representative Walter Jones have bravely brought this legislation to the floor. It will "require the President to develop a flexible timetable to draw down U.S. troops from Afghanistan." H.R. 5015: Redeployment of U.S. Troops from Afghanistan, and it's sister bill in the Senate, S. 3197, are critical first steps for the U.S. withdrawal effort.

In our efforts to support an end to the war in Afghanistan, Peace Action helped to lead efforts successfully coordinating a national call-in week in support of this legislation. It is important that we support our allies in this struggle and lift our voices in unison with them.

Call the Congressional Hotline at (202) 224-3121 between 9–5 PM Eastern. Alternatively, you may look up the phone numbers of your Members of Congress here in order to leave a message. Use our calling script below and tell your Members of Congress and ask them to support S. 3197, to support H. R. 5015, and to stop funding this war!

Call Script

Call the Congressional Hotline at (202) 224-3121 to reach your Senators or Representative.

Remember to be polite, respectful and clear. Also, don’t forget to use the bill number. The Senate bill number is S. 3197. The House bill number is H. R. 5015.

Introduce yourself to whomever answers the phone. Let them know you are a constituent and a member of Peace Action. Mention what town or city you live in as well.

If you can, try to get a staff person who knows the Senator's position on Afghanistan on the phone. For instance, try asking for the Foreign Policy aide.

Say that you've been very concerned about the direction which the war in Afghanistan has gone and that you want your Senator/Representative to support the Afghanistan Withdrawal Timeline legislation (S. 3197 or H.R. 5015). In addition, tell the staffer that you would like your Senator/Representative to vote against all future funding for the war in Afghanistan.

Be firm and let the aide know how you would like your Senator/Representative to support the resolution. Tell the aide that you would like your Senator/Representative to co-sponsor and support the bill (S. 3197 or H. R. 5015) as well as to vote against future war funding.

Example Script for Your Calls

"Hello, my name is __________. I'm a constituent and a member of Peace Action. I'm calling from __________ (city or town).

Could I speak to your staff person who handles Afghanistan?

(If no, leave a message urging the Senator to support and co-sponsor the bill _______ (S. 3197 or H. R. 5015) introduced by ______ (Senator Fiengold or Representatives McGovern and Jones) and to vote against all future war funding.)

I'm very concerned about our present strategy in Afghanistan and would like the Senator to support McGovern and Jones' resolution S. 3197. This bill would set a timetable for withdrawal from Afghanistan. Furthermore, I would like the Senator/Representative to vote "no" on all future funding requests for the war in Afghanistan.

Can you please get back to me when you’ve found out what the Senator/Representative plans to do in support of this bill?"

Thank You for Calling

Thank you for calling. This is a critical issue which demands acton. As Rep. McGovern put it, “After 8 long years, hundreds of billions of dollars and – most importantly – thousands of our brave soldiers killed or wounded, it is past time to re-examine this strategy. Instead of nation-building in Afghanistan, I believe we should be doing some more nation-building here at home. The American people deserve accountability – in terms of how and when our troops will be returned to their families and in terms of how taxpayer dollars are being spent.”

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