congress

Tell your Rep: Help us avert famine in Yemen

The UN and the Red Cross say Yemen is on the brink of famine, with hundreds of thousands of children at risk of starvation if Yemen's Hodeida port is not quickly opened to international humanitarian aid.

Rep. Ted Lieu and Rep. John Conyers are circulating a letter to Secretary of State Tillerson, urging him to use all U.S. diplomatic tools to help open Hodeida port to international humanitarian aid to avert famine.

Call your Representative now at (202) 224-3121. When you reach a staffer or leave a message, you can say something like:

"Please sign the Lieu-Conyers letter to help avert famine in Yemen. Help open Hodeida port to international humanitarian aid."

When you've made your call, please report it below.

And if you haven't yet signed our petition urging House Members to sign the Lieu-Conyers letter, you can do that here.

TRUMP THREATENS IRAN - CALL YOUR REP!

Roll Call reports:

the Trump administration escalated its sudden sabre-rattling toward Iran when President Donald Trump directly criticized Tehran in a series of tweets ... Hours after his top national security adviser put Iran “on notice” and other senior administration officials refused to rule out U.S. military action against the Islamic Republic, Trump himself appeared to threaten the Middle Eastern power in a series of tweets — and the words of U.S. presidents carry far more weight than career bureaucrats briefing behind the veil of anonymity

Call your Rep. now at (202) 224-3121. When you reach a staffer or leave a message, you can say something like:

I urge you to invoke Congressional war powers before President Trump attacks Iran. Congress must debate and vote.

When you've made your call, please report it below.

And if you haven't signed our petition to Congress yet, please do that here.

Tell your member of Congress to support Keith Ellison's #NoTPP fair trade policies!

On January 23, the US announced that it was withdrawing from the anti-democratic, anti-worker Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement [TPP] and seeking a reopening of the North American Free Trade Agreement [NAFTA]. The AFL-CIO praised the moves, saying, "Today's announcement that the US is withdrawing from TPP and seeking a reopening of NAFTA is an important first step toward a trade policy that works for working people. While these are necessary actions, they aren’t enough. They are just the first in a series of necessary policy changes required to build a fair and just global economy. We will continue our relentless campaign to create new trade and economic rules that end special privileges for foreign investors and Big Pharma, protect our planet’s precious natural resources and ensure fair pay, safe conditions and a voice in the workplace for all workers."

Use War Powers to Remove U.S. Forces from Saudi Bombing of Yemen

As Democratic Senator Chris Murphy has noted, U.S. participation in the Saudi bombing of Yemen has never been authorized by Congress.

Urge your reps. to use their war powers to force a vote on removing U.S. forces from the Saudi bombing of Yemen by signing our petition at MoveOn.

Saudi Arabia's conduct is now coming under unprecedented scrutiny. New evidence has recently emerged that the U.S. intelligence community believes that the government of Saudi Arabia has been supporting ISIS. But Congress has never voted on whether the U.S. should be refueling Saudi planes that are bombing Yemen, even though U.S. officials have warned that the U.S. could be implicated in war crimes for supporting the Saudi bombing of Yemen.

Under section 5(c) of the War Powers Resolution, "at any time that United States Armed Forces are engaged in hostilities outside the territory of the United States, its possessions and territories without a declaration of war or specific statutory authorization, such forces shall be removed by the President if the Congress so directs by concurrent resolution."

Urge your reps. to use their war powers to force a vote on removing U.S. forces from the Saudi bombing of Yemen by signing and sharing our petition.

9/11 Families Deserve Their Day in Court Against Saudi Arabia

This week the House and Senate are expected to vote on whether to override the President's veto of the Justice Against Sponsors of Terror Act ["JASTA"]. JASTA would allow 9/11 families to sue Saudi Arabia over allegations Saudi officials were linked to the 9/11 attacks. The bill makes no judgment about Saudi Arabia's responsibility for the attacks. It just removes Saudi Arabia's immunity from lawsuit over support for terrorist attacks on U.S. soil. Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders both support the bill.

Call your Representative now at (202) 224-3121. When you reach a staffer or leave a message, you can say something like:

"I urge you to vote the override the President's veto of the Saudi 9/11 bill so the 9/11 families can have their day in court."

When you've made your call, please report it below.

Under current U.S. law, Americans can sue Iran for terrorism in U.S. courts, but they can't sue Saudi Arabia for terrorism in U.S. courts, because Iran is on the State Department's "state sponsor of terror" list and Saudi Arabia is not. The State Department is allowed to take "broader U.S. foreign policy interests" besides concern about support for terrorism into account in forming its list - like the Saudi government's cozy relationship with the C.I.A.

In January, the New York Times reported that:

Put Pentagon Bloat on the Table to Pay for Domestic Infrastructure

The Washington Post claims today that Hillary Clinton won't be able to fulfill her promise to increase domestic infrastructure spending, because House Republicans will insist on cuts elsewhere to pay for it. But that would only be the end of the story if we assumed - as the Washington Post apparently does - that the bloated Pentagon budget is sacrosanct.

Not every House Republican votes in lock-step with the Pentagon. Forty House Republicans - many of them members of the House Liberty Caucus - voted with the overwhelming majority of House Democrats to stop the transfer of cluster bombs to Saudi Arabia.

Urge Democrats and Republicans in Washington to put cuts to the bloated Pentagon budget on the table to pay for domestic infrastructure spending by signing our petition at MoveOn.

Tell Congress: Break Up the Big Banks!

They may not agree on much. But both Democrats and Republicans included reinstating the Glass-Steagall Act - separating traditional commercial banking from Wall Street financial speculation - in their official party platforms.

"Too big to fail" banks are a threat to our economy. But they're also a threat to our democracy - and not only to our democracy, but to other people's democracies.

For twenty years I've supported efforts to reform U.S. foreign policy at the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank - in particular, to stop IMF "bailouts" that transfer bad bets from big banks onto public balance sheets, planning to pay for these bailouts with democracy-smashing "austerity" policies.

It's painfully obvious - after the "Asian financial crisis" in the 1990s, after Argentina, after Greece, after Puerto Rico - that we're never going to have a decent chance to meaningfully reform IMF policies until we break the political power of the big banks. And one of the best ways to start doing that is to break them up.

A yuge coalition of groups, including the AFL-CIO and Daily Kos, is working to do just that. Join us by signing our joint petition.

Congress: Commit U.S. to be #ZeroBy2050

The COP21 international summit on the climate produced a landmark climate agreement with nearly 200 nations as cosignatories. [1] The agreement recognized "that climate change represents an urgent and potentially irreversible threat to human societies and the planet" and "that deep reductions in global emissions will be required" to revert climate change and its effects.

It is time for the U.S. to take steps to reduce its carbon emissions. The Congressional Progressive Caucus (CPC) has introduced a resolution that calls for the U.S. to be emission-free by 2050 and details ways for the U.S. to reach that goal. We are joining organizations like the Sierra Club, Friends of the Earth, CREDO and others in calling for Congress to support this resolution.

Urge members of Congress to cosponsor and support the CPC's bill for the U.S. to be emission-free by 2050 by signing our joint petition:

http://www.signherenow.org/petition/zeroby2050/jfp/

As we've seen in Syria, climate change is a security issue. [2] Outside experts and Pentagon officials agree that droughts and extreme weather caused by climate change can exacerbate existing tensions within a society and increase the risk for war. A more peaceful world will be facilitated by a greener world.

Climate change poses a very real danger to the lives and well-being of every person on the planet, but especially to those in developing countries. The U.S. has a special obligation to take action to eliminate its carbon emissions because it is the second biggest carbon emitter and, thus, bears a larger responsibility to vulnerable communities affected by climate change.

Urge Congress to commit the U.S. to being emission-free by 2050 by signing & sharing our joint petition:

Congress: Debate and Vote Before New Libya War

The Obama administration is drawing up plans to significantly escalate U.S. military action in Libya. Administration officials say the campaign in Libya could begin in a matter of weeks.

Urge Congress to exercise its Constitutional responsibility to debate and vote before U.S. military escalation in Libya by signing our petition at MoveOn:

http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/act/congress-debate-vote-before-new-libya-war

This escalation is being planned without a meaningful debate in Congress about the merits and risks of a military campaign, the New York Times notes. Pentagon officials have not made a case that the proposed military action has achievable goals, and airstrikes could lead to a ground war.

If Congress takes no action, endless war will likely be extended to a new country, without time limit, without restrictions on the use of U.S. ground troops, and without any limit on who can be targeted, even if they have never attacked the United States nor shown any public inclination to do so.

Urge Congress to exercise its responsibilities under the Constitution and the War Powers Resolution by debating and voting on U.S. military escalation in Libya before it happens by signing and sharing our petition:

http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/act/congress-debate-vote-before-new-libya-war

TPP: No To Post-Election "Etch-a-Sketch"

In an interview from Davos with Bloomberg TV on January 20, Chamber of Commerce President Tom Donohue, a top lobbyist for the pro-corporate-power Trans-Pacific Partnership [TPP] agreement, assured viewers that if Hillary Clinton wins the Presidential election, she will support the TPP, even though she opposes it now.

Urge Members of Congress to take a stand now on the TPP and pledge to keep the same position after the election by signing our petition at MoveOn:

http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/act/tpp-no-post-election-etch-a-sketch

Inside U.S. Trade reported: "The Chamber president said he expected Hillary Clinton would ultimately support the TPP if she becomes the Democratic nominee for president and is elected. He argued that she has publicly opposed the deal chiefly because her main challenger, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), has also done so. 'If she were to get nominated, if she were to be elected, I have a hunch that what runs in the family is you get a little practical if you ever get the job,' he said."

Donohue also said TPP will not be voted on prior to the election because Senate Republicans do not want to do anything that could jeopardize Republican Senators in close races. But he said he believed there was a 75 percent chance that TPP would get done in the lame-duck session after the election.