U.S. Poverty Weekly Update October 3, 2017
U.S. Poverty Campaigns
Weekly Update | October 3, 2017
“This is not the time to cut vital programs as is being proposed by some in Congress for the budget for 2018.”
– RESULTS Houston volunteer Kathleen Duncan in a September 24 letter to the editor in the Houston Chronicle
Quick Action: Tell Congress to Reject Tax Cuts that Put Anti-Poverty Programs at Risk
Got Five Minutes? Call Aides to Oppose House and Senate Budgets
After last week’s victory on health care, we have to make a hard pivot this week back to budget and taxes. That’s because both the House and Senate will be voting on budget proposals this week that grease the skids for giant tax cuts for the wealthy and pave the way for cuts to core anti-poverty programs.
The full House will be voting on Thursday on their budget, which uses budget reconciliation to fast-track cuts to SNAP, Medicaid, and the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) (among other programs) to pay for tax cuts for wealthy Americans and big corporations. Also, this week, the Senate Budget Committee will be voting on their budget proposal. While it does not include specific cuts to anti-poverty programs, it does include reconciliation instructions for cutting taxes that will add $1.5 trillion to the deficit over the next ten years. This lost revenue will inevitable squeeze the budgets of important programs such as SNAP, Medicaid, and the EITC, putting them grave risk of cuts.
Just as with health care, it’s going to take the grassroots to keep these reckless proposals from becoming law.
TAKE ACTION: Take five minutes to call both House and Senate aides TODAY urging your representative and senators to oppose the current budget proposals. Designate someone in your group (the point person for each member of Congress or whoever is most appropriate) to call Instead of calling a particular policy aide (these budgets cover many areas), call the aides with whom you or your group have the best relationship. That may be someone you’ve developed a relationship with over time or perhaps someone you just met with and had recent contact. You can find aide names here and we have updated our U.S. Poverty Laser Talks with tailored messages depending on whom you talk to. Once you’ve made a call, please fill out the RESULTS Lobby Report Form to let us know what they said.
Got Ten Minutes? Send Call-in Alert to People in Your Networks
Tomorrow, October 4 is a Day of Action for advocates on federal budget and tax issues. Building on the stopping Graham-Cassidy last week, we want to send a strong message to Congress – enacting a budget that enacts deficit-increasing tax cuts, which will widen wealthy inequality (estimates are that by 2027, 80 percent of the tax cuts will go to the top one percent) and put anti-poverty programs at risk, is just as reckless as taking health insurance from millions.
RESULTS will be sending out an e-mail alert urging people to call House and Senate offices and tell their members of Congress to reject their respective 2018 budget proposals. When you get this e-mail, please forward it to all your local action networks, friends, and family and urge them to call too. Make it hard for members of Congress to vote for these dangerous budgets.
TAKE ACTION: Take ten minutes to join the national Day of Action by forwarding the RESULTS call-in alert arriving tomorrow telling Congress to vote NO on the 2018 budget proposals (and be sure to call yourself as well). Let Congress know in a strong, unequivocal voice that tax cuts for the rich at the expense of low-income Americans are unacceptable.
Got Twenty Minutes? Use October Recess to Talk about Poverty and Taxes
Over the next two weeks, both the House and Senate will be on recess. The Senate will be home October 9-13 and the House will be home October 16-20. With major decisions being made over the next few weeks about the 2018 budget, tax legislation, and the fate of SNAP, Medicaid, the EITC and Child Tax Credit, these recesses are important opportunities to let your members of Congress know what their priorities should be. Do you want to see another tax plan that gives more tax cuts to the wealthy and big corporations? Do you want anti-poverty programs put at risk because of increasing deficits from tax legislation? Or would you rather Congress only take up tax legislation if it is revenue-neutral and puts the interests of low- and moderate-income Americans first?
Even after the budget votes this week, House and Senate leaders will have to work out the differences between the two. Those negotiations will take place after the October recesses. Therefore, your meetings and questions at town halls this month can play a pivotal role in what that final budget looks like.
TAKE ACTION: Request face-to-face meetings with your representatives and senators when they are on recess over the next two weeks (Senate: October 9-13; House: October 16-20). Contact schedulers (plug in your address on our new Elected Officials page, then click on your senators’ or representative’s name to scroll down to “Staff Members”) to request a meeting or check on the status a previous request. Be sure to ask about town halls and public events your members of Congress may be having during the recesses (also check www.townhallproject.com for events). When you get a meeting or town hall on your calendar, please contact Meredith Dodson to get individualized coaching for your meeting. Also, please remember to fill out a lobby report form afterward to let us know how it went.
If you want more background information on this new push over tax legislation, listen to the recent Prosperity Now webinar (with our own Meredith Dodson) “The Power of Advocacy in the Fight for Equity” here. Also, register for the second webinar in the series “Bringing Tax Wonks and Grassroots Activists Together to End Inequality” here.
CHIP Funding Ends Causing Uncertainty in States. Lost in all the health care chaos over the last few weeks is the fact that Congress let funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program expire over the weekend. The program provides health coverage for about 9 million children nationwide, generally in low-to-moderate-income families who earn too much to qualify for Medicaid but not enough to afford private health insurance. While there appears to be a deal to extend the program, there is no timeline on when Congress will act on it. Until then, states without CHIP reserves will have to begin winding down their programs.
Attend Tonight’s Webinar on Connecting New Advocates to RESULTS. If you are actively recruiting new people to join RESULTS, how are you connecting with them in a meaningful way? Do you know how to orient them to your group and advocacy? Do you have a plan to effectively coach them and engage them in powerful action taking? Join our webinar tonight, October 3 at 8:30 pm ET to learn how to grab the interest of new potential advocates and build them into effective and engaged RESULTS advocates and future leaders. To participate, login at: http://fuze.me/35674518 or dial (201) 479-4595, meeting ID 35674518.
Join RESULTS and MomsRising “Food Friday” Tweet Chat on October 13. The U.S. Census recently released poverty and food insecurity data from 2016. We will be discussing this new information in the context of its real impact on working families, and evaluating the effectiveness of basic assistance programs such as SNAP on everyday Americans. Join us on Twitter using the hashtag #FoodFri on Friday, October 13, from 1:00 -2:00 pm ET for a discussion of these programs and the threats and opportunities ahead.
October Action Coming. The October Action will be available online later this week. This month we’ll continue efforts to empower others into action in our communities by writing letters to Congress about the budget and taxes.
Upcoming Congressional Recesses: House: October 16-20; Senate: October 9-13.
They Are Interested in RESULTS. Now What Do I Do? Webinar, October 3, 8:30 pm ET. Login: http://fuze.me/35674518. Or to join by phone only, dial (201) 479-4595, meeting ID 35674518.
Indigenous Peoples’ Day, Monday, October 9. All RESULTS office closed.
RESULTS U.S. Poverty National Webinar, Tuesday, October 10 at 8:00 pm ET. Participate at http://fuze.me/32255914 or (201) 479-4595, Meeting ID: 32255914#.
RESULTS Introductory Call, Wednesday, October 11 at 9:00pm ET. Register for an upcoming Intro Call on the RESULTS website.
RESULTS and MomsRising Food Friday Tweet Chat, Friday, October 13 at 1:00 -2:00 pm ET. Join on Twitter at #FoodFri.
U.S. Poverty Free Agents Calls, Tuesday, October 17 at 1:00pm and 8:00 pm ET. To participate, login at http://fuze.me/32256018 or dial by phone at (201) 479-4595, Meeting ID: 32256018#.
Observance of Veterans’ Day, Friday, November 10. All RESULTS offices closed.
2018 RESULTS International Conference, July 14-17, 2018, Grand Hyatt Hotel in Washington, D.C. Save the date and keep an eye out for more details.
If you have a question, comment or suggestion for the RESULTS/RESULTS Educational Fund Board, please e-mail them to RESULTS Grassroots Board Member Steven McGee at [email protected]. You can view the most recently published minutes from Board meetings on the RESULTS website, as well as download RESULTS’ most recent Annual Report.