Dear Friends:

As I was about to hit send, The New York Times reported that the latest attempt to repeal the Affordable Care Act has collapsed as two more Republican senators have broken with the party on the issue.

I thought about changing all the health care actions in the email, but decided not to because:

  1. Things change in Washington – sometimes very rapidly.
  2. Being two votes away from millions of Americans losing coverage is still too close.
  3. This will not be the last attempt to gut the ACA. We can’t blink.


1. No Trumpcare. This is definitely a work of persistence. At this writing the Senate is delaying a vote on another repeal measure until Sen. John McCain recovers from surgery. That’s because the anti-ACA crowd cannot afford to lose a single vote.  The latest iteration will still cut more than $700 billion from Medicaid. Sen. Ted Cruz inserted an amendment that allows insurers to offer bare-bones policies that will be worthless if you actually get sick.

The Washington Post has a handy and continuously updated list of where Senate Republicans stand on the bill. Currently Sen. McCain is listed as having concerns. Please send McCain a get-well message.

Dear Sen. McCain:

I hope that your recovery from your surgery is speedy and complete. I am glad that you were able to have your care attended to by excellent clinicians and that ability to pay did not stand between you and the best treatment. As you know, this is not the case for all Americans. More people will lose coverage or will have to settle for poor coverage if the Better Care Reconciliation Act passes. You have demonstrated independence in the past, putting country before party. I ask you to do this once again and vote “no” on BCRA.

With my very best wishes for your health –

2. Tell your legislators to do their jobs. The state has been operating without a budget since July 1. This means that the governor independently makes financial decisions – but has limited access to funds. Cuts to programs that serve people with disabilities, seniors and others have been draconian. If the legislature is incapable of passing a reasonable budget in short order, it should at least pass a temporary budget to free up funds and restore essential services.

Please contact your legislators.

Script: I am a constituent from XXXXXX. Without a budget, dangerous and painful cuts are hurting Connecticut’s most vulnerable residents. The legislature should at the very least pass a temporary budget – either the one proposed by the governor or one of its own design. Residents are suffering because of politics in Hartford. Will you stand up and do something about it?

3. Keep John K. Bush off the bench. Bush, who has never been a judge, is Trump’s nominee to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. Bush has criticized New York Times v. Sullivan, a U.S. Supreme Court decision that protects the press from spurious libel suits. This is disturbing in light of Trump’s declaration that: “I’m going to open up our libel laws so when they write purposely negative and horrible and false articles, we can sue them and win lots of money.” He is also against the Affordable Care Act and publicly funded elections.

Senator Blumenthal voted against the nomination in committee. Please thank him and ask Sen. Murphy to join him in a no vote on the floor.

Sen. Blumenthal: (202) 224-2823

  • Script: I am a constituent from XXXX. Thank you for opposing the nomination of extremist John K. Bush in committee. I appreciate you standing up for a free press and other basic American values.

Sen. Murphy: (202) 224-4041

  • Script: I am a constituent from XXXX. I hope that you will oppose the nomination of extremist John K. Bush to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. Please stand up for a free press and other basic American values.



A new feature to our newsletter; click on the logos to learn more about the local businesses that have donated to make Simple Gifts and other events we’ve done a success.  #sociallyresponsiblebusinesses #weLOVElocal


More On Health Care
There’s lots of mobilization to protect the ACA and improve upon it.

  1. Today (Tuesday) Indivisible is coordinating  #KILLTHEBILL actions around the country. Find out what’s going on near you here.
  2. Our regular vigil – Saturday, 10 a.m., Two Wrasslin’ Cats – will be a #KILLTHEBILL event.
  3. Sen. Blumenthal is having a healthcare meeting Monday. The hearing will be held from 9:05 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. Monday in Room 310 at the state Capitol in Hartford.


  1. Boycott B&H. Workers report being denied ambulances when seriously injured and being coerced into signing away their worker’s comp rights.  If you are a photographer or other media professional, signing on to the action will be especially helpful.
  2. Boycott Wendy’s. The Fair Food Program ensures fair wages and humane working conditions at participating farms. Wendy’s is the only one of the top five fast food companies in the U.S. that refuses to participate. McDonald’s, Burger King, Yum!Brands (Taco Bell, KFC, Pizza Hut) and Subway have all signed on and buy their fruits and vegetables from farms that treat workers right. Let Wendy’s know their bad behavior will cost them money by tweeting:
  • I’m not eating @Wendy’s until they join the Fair Food Program.


Keep Nury Chavarria in Connecticut.  Nury, the mother of four from Norwalk could possibly be deported on the 19th or 20th. She was informed this week that her stay was denied because the paperwork about her 21 yr old disabled son’s medical condition was not current. (Her son was born with Cerebral Palsy which left him with physical and cognitive deficits. These conditions don’t improve over time. But ICE wants more recent letters from the medical folks.). Yesterday, Nury, traveled to MD’s offices and hospitals gathering this info so she can submit it to the ICE office. If the deportation is going to happen, CT Shoreline Indivisible will be holding some type of demonstration with invitations to the press and public officials. When this demonstration occurs, we  need as many people as possible to attend this event. The more people, the more press coverage and then more people will be made aware of her plight. CT SHORELINE INDIVISIBLE WILL BE POSTING ON THEIR FACEBOOK PAGE IF AND WHEN AND WHERE THE DEMONSTRATION WILL TAKE PLACE.


Together We Rise General Meeting. Thursday, 6 p.m. at the East Haddam Town Beach (Mott Lane). Rapid Response Chair Chris Van Scoy will give us a tutorial on how to safely and effectively intervene when we see harassment. She’ll also talk about volunteer opportunities that will get you working directly with immigrants. Please bring your own picnic. We’ll provide the watermelon.

Weekly vigil Every Saturday at 10 a.m. outside Two Wrasslin’ Cats, for as long as necessary. All summer, we’ll be collecting for the East Haddam Food Bank at the vigil. Summer is a hungry time for kids who aren’t getting school breakfasts and lunches. Remember: This Saturday is a #KILLTHEBILL event, so let’s try to get some health care themed signs in the mix.


  • America First – Unless You’re Ivanka. Much has been written about the first daughter’s clothing line, which relies on foreign factories with abysmal labor practices. But this Sunday’s Washington Post piece is worth of read because it is so comprehensive.
  • Kris Kobach Wants to Take Away Voting Rights. Kobach is behind the demand for voter info (which Sec. of State Denise Merrill refused to hand over). Now an email chain shows that he has been planning since the day after the election to make it harder for many Americans to vote.


  • Buycott lets you scan a UPC code and get the skinny on what corporations could profit from your purchase. You can choose which campaigns you want to support – for example boycotting companies that use child labor or test products on animals – the app warns you if a product fails your ethical standards and suggests alternatives. The app also lets you tell companies why they are losing your business.

Last Word

The people of Concord, Mass fought the first battle of the American Revolution, were an active stop on the Underground Railroad and were among the first to organize for women’s suffrage. They must know something.


Colleen Shaddox

Political Action
Together We Rise CT



Copyright © 2017  Together We Rise CT- Building Bridges for Justice, All rights reserved.

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