PEG 12th Congressional District
Newsletter #96, Thursday, February 7, 2019
116 weeks down
Trump Admin - It’s Too Hard To Reunite Thousands Of Separated Families Court Filing
According to AP reports , The Trump administration says it would take an extraordinary effort to reunite what may be thousands of immigrant children with their parents. In a report in NY Magazin e , Jonathan White, who heads the Health and Human Services Department’s efforts to reunite migrant children with their parents, said removing children from “sponsor” homes to rejoin their parents would “present grave child welfare concerns.” This is creating a situation of de facto adoption. The government and ACLU will return to court on February 21.

Close Child Detention Centers!! The Shut Tornillo Down Coalition is lobbying NOW in Washington, DC
As of January 2019, the Homestead Detention Center in Florida housed 1,350 asylum-seeking teens, aged 13 - 17. Plans were announced in December to expand that population to 2,350! The Shut Tornillo Down Coalition is in Washington, DC, this week to encourage legislators to support the following important legislation to turn our immigration policy away from punitive deterrence and towards compassionate welcoming of people seeking safety, freedom, and a better life.
Call your legislators (click here ) in Washington today re: pending legislation!
1) “Shut Down Child Prison Camps Act”
Call your Senators to support S. 3798 and your Representatives to support H.R. 7360. These bills prohibit the maintenance or operation of any unlicensed temporary emergency shelter for unaccompanied alien children, including the temporary emergency shelter in Homestead, FL.
2) “Families, not Facilities Act”
Call your Senators to support S. 3624. This bill prohibits inappropriate ICE use of HHS sponsorship information, transfer ICE FY2019 enforcement and removal funding to programs to ensure the safety and welfare of unaccompanied children, and create an ORR Advisory Committee on Shelters.
Mature leader talking on phone and looking away. Senior business man in formal have a serious conversation at cellphone. Businessman discussing over phone during working call.
Call these Republicans ASAP!
In committee now: House Republicans are moving to reverse Gov Whitmer’s Executive Order strengthening environmental protections.
  • Sue Allor 517-373-0833
  • Lynn Afendoulis 517-373-0218
  • Greg Vanwoerkem 517-373-3436
  • Matt Hall 517-373-1787
  • Jim Lilly 517-373-0838
  • Brad Paquette 517-373-1796
  • Gary Howell 517-373-1800
  • Ryan Berman 517-373-1799
  • Steve Marino 517-373-0113
  • Larry Inman 517-373-1766
  • Hank Vaupel 517-373-8835
  • Sarah Lightner 517-373-1775
  • Julie Calley 517-373-0842
  • Jack O'Malley 517-373-0825
  • John Reilly 517-373-1798
  • Steven Johnson 517-373-0840
Events
Co-Executive Directors Leah Greenberg and Ezra Levin present on Facebook Live

Activist call
Their organizing and policy teams will walk you through what’s going on in the conference committee and how to plan for the day of action on Monday, February 11.  Click here to RSVP for the call. 8 pm
Thursday, February 7. Drafts with Donna
This is an opportunity to ask Rep. Lasinski your questions and receive a legislative update from Lansing. For more information call Rep. Lasinski's legislative office at (517) 373-0828. The Beer Grotto - Dexter, 8059 Main Street, Dexter. 6–7 pm

Saturday, February 9. UNITY Meeting
WCDP, WCDP Black Caucus, Ann Arbor Dems, Eastern Washtenaw Dems, and Western Washtenaw Dems Unity Meeting, Washtenaw County Learning Resource Center, 4135 Washtenaw Ave, Ann Arbor . Social time begins at 9:30 am, program begins at 10 am
Michigan Resistance Calling Parties
This week: Encourage MI Democratic Representatives to stay strong against the Border Wall.
Monday, February 11. Dearborn Heights Dems Monthly Meeting
Canfield Community Center, 1901 North Beech Daily Road, Dearborn Heights . 7–8 pm

Wednesday, February 13. Wyandotte Dems Monthly Meeting
Copeland Center, 2306 4th Street, Wyandotte . 7–8 pm

Wednesday, February 13. Dark money and its effect on our political process
The Michigan League of Women Voters will be presenting Craig Mauger, the executive director of the Michigan Campaign Finance Network (MCFN), will give a presentation about what happened in 2018, how the role of money in state politics has changed and how it impacts policy decisions that affect everyone. Pointless Brewery & Theater, 3014 Packard St, Ann Arbor . 7:30 pm
 Wednesday, February 13. League of Women Voters of the Ann Arbor Area
Meet the Elected Officials from Dearborn, Dearborn Heights, and Inkster, presented by the League of Women Voters Dearborn/Dearborn Heights. Join your neighbors for an informal open house to meet your elected officials, get your copy of the League’s 2019 Who’s Who: Your Elected Officials, and celebrate the League’s 99th anniversary.  Click here for the Facebook Event with additional info, call (313) 278-6476 or email info@lwvddh.org . Merci Café, 3371 Greenfield, Dearborn . 5–7 pm
Thursday, February 14. 12th District Dems Monthly Meeting
Email12thdems@gmail.com for any questions. UAW, 9650 South Telegraph Road, Taylor . 7–8 pm
Sunday, February 17. Postcard writing event
Monday, February 18. Allen Park Dems Monthly Meeting
Questions: call Dan Geb 313-600-6720. American Hungarian Reformed Church, 9901 Allen Road, Allen Park. 7–8 pm

Tuesday, February 19. Sustainable Ann Arbor Forum: Adapting to Climate Change
Join a conversation on how the Ann Arbor community is taking steps to address climate impacts and what more we could be doing at the city, neighborhood and individual level. Climate adaptation experts will share the soup to nuts on climate change. RSVP here. Ann Arbor District Library - Downtown Branch. 343 S 5th Ave, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48104 . 7–8:30 pm
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Sunday, March 17. Katie Fahey, Founder of Voters Not Politicians to speak
Protectors of Equality in Government is hosting this program on how she was able to create an organization that resulted in Michigan passing a transformative anti-gerrymandering amendment and what more can be done. Jewish Community Center of Greater Ann Arbor,   2935 Birch Hollow Dr, Ann Arbor. 2–3:30 pm
Things to do
Coalition to end immigration detention
The Tornillo Shutdown Coalition had tremendous success in helping to convince the government to shut down the immigrant children's prison in Tornillo, Texas. The Coalition is now organizing to meet in Washington, DC, to lobby for an end to immigration detention . The Coalition will hold a press conference in DC on February 6 or 7 with Senator Jeff Merkley (D-OR) and Representative Judy Chu (D-CA27) who will be re-introducing their bills to shut down immigrant child detention. Other members of Congress may join us at this event. The details of the event will be forthcoming. The Coalition will also visit as many congressional offices as possible to explain the concerns and ask for support. A public demonstration is also being planned for February 8.
It is suggested that those who are unable to be in DC visit the district offices of their congresspeople and/or call their to congressional offices . If you can help with any of these efforts, please email ShutTornilloDown@gmail.com and include in the subject-line of your email one of the following, so that the Coalition can follow up with more details:
  1. I will come to DC,
  2. I will visit my district office,
  3. I will phone congressional offices.
The coalition is moving forward, and asks for your continued support.
Call Your Representatives - 3 Items
Situation has gone too far, families need to be reunited
The ACLU tweeted on Friday, “BREAKING: Tonight the Trump administration filed documents that don’t dispute the recent report that there may have been thousands more separated kids. They’re arguing it would take too long to figure out where those kids are because they have no tracking system. This response is a shocking concession that the government can’t easily find thousands of children it ripped from parents, and doesn’t even think it’s worth the time to locate each of them. We will be back in court on February 21.” Read more here. - NBC and ACLU

Attorneys, journalists prevented from entering Mexico
Their passports were flagged with alerts from an “unknown” government. The attorneys had been providing legal assistance to migrants in the process of filing asylum claims. Let’s make sure our MoCs are aware of this and ask them to intervene. Read more here. - The Los Angeles Times

We prefer the stronger "No First Use Act."
In a terrifying move, on Friday the Trump announced that he will pull the U.S. out of the nuclear arms control treaty signed with Russia in1987. Read more at AP. With Russia now pulling out, as well, the potential for nuclear proliferation is at the highest it’s been since the Cold War. As Trump continues to show his impulsivity and disregard his national security experts it is imperative to pass the bills making it U.S. policy to not use nuclear weapons first. The bill, Senate bill S272 and House bill HR921 , titled the "No First Use Act", simply says, “It is the policy of the United States to not use nuclear weapons first.” Read more at The Hill. Related bills, S200 / HR669 , would require congressional approval to launch a nuclear first strike. Let's contact our MoC's in support of these bills and let them know we prefer the "No First Use Act."
Things to listen to, read, and watch
Bipartisan rebuke of Trump!
According to the NY Times , last week the Senate - in a bipartisan rebuke to President Trump’s foreign policy - voted overwhelmingly to advance legislation drafted by the majority leader to express strong opposition to the president’s withdrawal of United States military forces from Syria and Afghanistan.
 
New emails show Michigan GOP used maps to consolidate Republican power
A slew of new emails were made public on the eve of a federal trial over whether the GOP illegally gerrymandered legislative and congressional districts in Michigan in 2011. Among other emails uncovered earlier in the case, GOP consultants bragged lines were drawn to give Republicans a “solid 9-5 [congressional] delegation” and another joked about configuring a district so it’s “it’s giving the finger" to former Democratic U.S. Rep. Sandy Levin and discussed cramming “Dem garbage” into four southeast Michigan districts.Click here and here for more information. - Bridge Magazine
Whitmer signs directive to cut fees, wait times on FOIA requests
Gov. Gretchen Whitmer wants Michigan to lose its distinction as one of the least transparent states in the country. Read more here. - Michigan Advance

Experts: Trump's tape-bound women trafficking claim is misleading
In Friday's Rose Garden comments temporarily ending the shutdown, President Trump repeated an anecdote that has become a common refrain in his arguments for the building of his border wall. "Women are tied up," Trump said. "They're bound. Duct tape put around their faces, around their mouths. In many cases they can't even breathe." Read more here. - CNN

Michigan League for Public Policy launches people-driven agenda
Michigan needs a major tune-up. That’s why on Thursday, the MLPP is announcing “The Owner’s Manual for Michigan” , a clear and comprehensive public policy plan to help the state’s leaders on the road ahead. Read more here. - Michigan Advance

In one month, Dana Nessel erases many of Bill Schuette’s federal pursuits
Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel capped a dizzying first month in office by reversing the state’s position in more than a dozen cases previously steered by her Republican predecessor. Read more here. - Bridge

Mitch McConnell just made it much easier for Democrats to accuse Republicans of voter suppression
Democrats are going all in on voting rights ahead of the 2020 election. Read more here. - The Washington Post
CEOs, Republicans add voices to Child care ‘crisis’
Few people are happy with the affordability of child care in Michigan. Bridge profiles a parent, a child care worker, the owner of a child care center, and a CEO whose workers can’t find suitable care. Read more here. - Bridge
Hundreds of millions live in extreme poverty, huge rewards go to those at the top
Universal health, education and other public services reduce the gap between rich and poor, and between women and men. Fairer taxation of the wealthiest can help pay for them. Check out the report, “Public good or private wealth?” -Oxfam International
Spending in 2018 Michigan U.S. House races double 2016 total
Report shows Spending in Michigan’s 14 U.S. House races in 2018 topped $80 million this year, doubling the 2016 total and marking the most expensive Congressional campaign cycle in Michigan history, the Michigan Campaign Finance Network found. Read more here. - MLive
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Good News!
Rep. Maloney Announces Historic Bipartisan Legislation on Holocaust Education
Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney (NY-12) joined Jewish advocacy groups at the Center for Jewish History to address a national rise in anti-Semitism and announced the reintroduction of her Never Again Education Act . This historic legislation is a bipartisan bill that will create a new grant program at the U.S. Department of Education to give teachers across the United States the resources and training necessary to teach our nation’s children the important lessons of the Holocaust and the horrific consequences of hate and intolerance.
And More Good News...
  • The 116th Congress includes a record number of Congressional Black Caucus members. 55!
  • House Oversight Committee requests compliance with prior document requests regarding violations of the Emoluments Clause, child separations at the border, and the water crisis in Flint, Michigan.
  • 98% of comments oppose a citizenship question on the census.
  • Maine governor rejects Medicaid work requirements and will expand job training programs for Medicaid recipients.
  • Maryland Board of Public Works votes unanimously to erect bronze statues of Harriet Tubman and Frederick Douglass in the Maryland State House.
  • California irrigators, previously exempt from overtime laws, are now eligible because of a new law.
  • Arizona Department of Transportation agrees to issue driver’s licenses to anyone with a federal Department of Homeland Security Employment Authorization Card.
  • Iowa judge strikes down part of a 2017 voter ID law that made it easier for some absentee ballot requests to be rejected.
  • Rhode Island is piloting risk-limiting election audits to ensure more secure elections.
  • New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signs legislation allowing early voting and closing a campaign finance loophole.
  • Kentucky: Two-thirds of Kentuckians support restoring voting rights to returning citizens in their state.
  • Texas Secretary of State acknowledges that a list of 95,000 possible noncitizens who are registered to vote may include naturalized citizens who are indeed eligible to vote.
  • Detroit, Michigan judge orders ICE to return Iraqi-American man, mistakenly deported to Iran, to the U.S.
  • In recent polling, more than 7 in 10 Americans favor laws to protect LGBT people against discrimination in employment, housing, and public accommodations.
  • Muslim woman is the first to force government to reverse a mistaken placement on a no-fly list.
PEG is a non-partisan volunteer organization whose mission is to assure that our government will treat all Americans with equality and acceptance. We do our work by recruiting, educating and nurturing supporters for worthy organizations, actions and events that reflect our beliefs.
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