A year ago, heading into the July 4th recess, our movement was fighting an epic battle to save the Affordable Care Act and to defeat TrumpCare.
The question on everyone’s mind was: can the resistance win?
The honest answer? No one knew.
The repeal bill passed the House in May, and the Senate released their bill right before recess with plans to vote in July. Indivisibles in Maine, in particular, came out to 4th of July parades to talk to their senator, Susan Collins to plead their case and ask their Senator to vote no. And they won her over. She voted no three weeks later, helping to defeat TrumpCare.
Now, we’re once again up against seemingly impossible odds as we head into this year’s July 4th recess.
On Wednesday, Justice Anthony Kennedy announced his retirement from the Supreme Court, delivering Donald Trump another vacancy -- and the ability to appoint a justice who will be all-but-guaranteed to side with conservatives. If this vacancy is filled, decision after decision, we will not have enough justices on our side to stop them. Their lifetime appointment will unravel decades of legal progress. A “yes” vote on any nominee Trump’s shortlist is a vote to ban abortion, to allow discrimination against LGBTQ people, and to limit voting and civil rights.
We’re in the fight of our lifetime. And again, the question is: can we win?
The path to victory was on healthcare was incredibly narrow, but it wasn’t hard. It required massive, sustained, collective, targeted action. And that’s exactly what we need again.
Last night, our co-Executive Director Ezra Levin was on The Rachel Maddow Show (watch here!) unveiling what we believe to be the only winning strategy to defeat Trump’s complete reimagining of the Supreme Court (read our strategy here). There are two steps:
First, we have a (narrow) path to stopping Trump's nomination: all Democrats must reject any nomination and two Republicans must join them. The hard truth is that Democrats have no mechanisms at their disposal to single-handedly stop this nomination, but they must hold strong and remain vigilant. And two Republicans -- likely Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowski who’ve supported Roe v. Wade -- must break from their caucus.
Second, we must retake the Senate in November. If we succeed in defeating Trump’s nominee this year but fail to retake the senate, Trump will just appoint another extremist next year. The only way to permanently win this fight is to retake the senate. Specifically, there are five flippable senate seats in Arizona, Mississippi, Nevada, Tennessee, and Texas. Are these easy seats to win? Nope. But they are winnable. If we hold the current 49 Democratic seats and then take at least two of these five seats in November, that will give us a Senate majority that can actually act as a permanent check on Trump.
That’s it. Get 51 votes against Trump’s nominee this year, and flip a few Senate seats to get at least 51 Democrats in the chamber for the next fight.
We have the winning strategy. Now, here’s how we do it.
Call. Show up. Call again. This is our bread and butter as a movement, and how we most effectively put pressure on our Senators. Each and every senator needs to hear from their constituents. Indivisibles in Alaska, Indiana, Maine, North Dakota, and West Virginia: your Senators are key votes in this fight. We need to let both Republicans and Democrats know that a ‘yes’ vote on Trump’s nominee is politically toxic, and it’ll follow them for the rest of their careers. Use our resource and call script to prepare, and then make your call. We’ve set up a toll-free number at 1-844-778-3056. Use it. Share it. Keep. On. Calling.
Your Senators will be on recess beginning today, until July 8. They’ll be home for a week working from their district offices and they’ll be at 4th of July parades, town halls, and barbeques. Read up on our resource to use these local public events to get facetime with your Senators.
Commit to volunteer to target voters in our five target states to flip the Senate -- AZ, MS, NV, TN, and TX. Indivisibles are e-v-e-r-y-w-h-e-r-e, and they’re already working to take back power and flip the Senate. And the stakes have never been higher. Are you ready to get to work? Sign up and commit to volunteer now. We’re building out a national phonebank to begin reaching progressive voters in these deep red states.
Conventional wisdom said that the resistance -- that you -- didn’t stand a chance to defeat TrumpCare. Republicans had full control of the House, the Senate, and the White House and TrumpCare would be the law of the land within hours of the inauguration. But you fought, and you won.
There’s a similarly narrow pathway to victory to #SaveSCOTUS. It’s not hard, it’s not complicated, and it can win. But the only way it’ll work is if we all throw in together.
It’s been a week full of of breaking news on everything from the Supreme Court’s rulings on the Muslim Ban and Janus, and the crisis on the border hasn’t relented. It's nonstop. The certainty of widespread pain and suffering, and the uncertainty of future victory is hard to stomach. It's almost unbearable.
But while we continue fighting across different issues, our advocacy is linked by a common cause. The Trump administration does not serve the will of the people, and we have a moral imperative to use our power to demand our leaders listen to us -- or else, we elect ones who will.
We’re fighting to save American democracy. Let’s do this.
Leah, Ezra, Angel, Marí, Sarah, Matt and the rest of the Indivisible Team