What a week, Washington Democrats. And what a week to start our new “short” Friday notes from the Chair, talking about one issue from the week, and also giving some ideas on things to read, watch, and do to increase your knowledge and effectiveness as party leaders (all optional of course - it’s up to you).
Next week, we will ALSO launch Democracy on Demand - a 15-minute Friday afternoon Facebook live session with our Democratic state legislators to keep you updated on events during the 2021 Legislative Session, which begins this Monday, January 11th. Feel free to bookmark our Facebook Live page so you don't miss it!
From the joys of our Senate victories in Georgia with Rev. Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff (and the absolutely thrilling prospect of Vice President-elect Kamala Harris as the new “tie-breaking” vote) to the attack on the American system of democracy and our very U.S. Capitol by white domestic terrorists -- aided by the woeful response of Capitol Police, and inflamed by a wannabe dictator and (once, soon to be twice) impeached president, who is simply out-of-control and treasonous.
Let’s not forget how momentous those Georgia victories are: the FIRST African-American Senator from that state and the ONLY Senator under the age of 50 (Jewish or not!). Black women - including Stacey Abrams and Nikema Williams - have saved democracy from racist roots and rioters (again). Organizing efforts win. Community matters.
However, it’s clear that Vice President Pence and the conveniently “resigning” GOP Cabinet Members will not invoke the 25th Amendment to remove this madman. Therefore, articles of impeachment have been drawn for a second time (supported by our Congressional members from Washington State) and a vote will be taken if Trump does not resign today.
Per House Speaker Pelosi: “If the president does not leave office imminently and willingly, the Congress will proceed with our action.” However, and to be brutally honest, the prospect of forcing Trump from office in less than two weeks seems remote. There are both logistical and political challenges involved, especially given that a two-thirds majority in the Senate would be required. It’s clear that not enough GOP senators are willing to stand up for democracy and our Constitution.
It’s treason and sedition, Dems. We must hold all of those involved thoroughly accountable (and NOT just via resignations - more to come in the coming weeks). And we must call out these racist actions for what they are.
Bottom line: these insurrectionists have at least 138 allies in Congress who are happy to indulge the president’s violence and end American democracy as we know it. They now have two QAnon champions in newly-elected Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene and Lauren Boebert. Boebart has also run into trouble with DC law enforcement for bragging online about bringing her glock to Congress, for heaven's sake.
And I haven’t even started on the GOP members in the Washington State Legislature yet.
This crisis of division and seditious acts will not end with Trump’s presidency. This is likely only a foreshadow of the work we will need to do in the coming months and years within our communities and districts.
Stay safe and well, and with gratitude for all you do,
Something to read: Dying of Whiteness: How the Politics of Racial Resentment Is Killing America's Heartland. Written by Jonathan M. Metzl, a Nashville, Tennessee Vanderbilt University professor of sociology and psychiatry, it’s based on research undertaken in Missouri, Tennessee, and Kansas from 2013 to 2018.
Something to watch: A Thousand Cuts, a documentary that goes inside the escalating war between the government and the press in the Philippines, and is applicable to what we are seeing in America today. It will be broadcast on PBS Frontline today, Friday, Jan 8. It should be available on the PBS website after the airing.
Something to do: We stand with every member of the Washington State delegation that has called for Vice President Pence to enact the 25th Amendment and supported the drafting of NEW articles of impeachment. We encourage Democrats in Washington to contact their Congressional representatives and senators to show support for their bold and decisive leadership in defense of our democracy.
Senator Maria Cantwell
Phone: (206) 220-6400
Senator Patty Murray
Phone: (202) 224-2621
Representative Suzan DelBene - CD 1
Phone: (202) 225-6311
Representative Rick Larsen - CD 2
Phone: (202) 225-2605
Representative Derek Kilmer - CD 6
Phone: (202) 225-5916
Representative Pramila Jayapal - CD 7
Phone: (202) 225-3106
Representative Kim Schrier - CD 8
Phone: (202) 225-7761
Representative Adam Smith - CD 9
Phone: (202) 225-8901
Representative Marilyn Strickland - CD 10
Phone: (202) 225-9740
Finally, take a moment for joy: As we approach Inauguration Day,share your visionfor America with the Biden-Harris administration by recording a video here. The Biden-Harris administration will restore our nation to great decency and honor. It will be an administration that works for every American.