Politics

Sorting Out the #COVID19 Relief Bill Mess or Call Your MoC about Passing #COVID19 Relief


I can’t believe I’m writing yet another post about the #COVID19 Relief Bill the law that almost was but never really had a fighting chance because the Repubes keep playing three-card Monty with the biggest obstacle. For the past three-weeks of panic over the impending deadline of Christmas recess and government funding, the Repubes have been flooding the zone with bullshit excuses for why they can’t come to an agreement on #COVID19 relief. The latest obstacle is PPP funding. I think CNN may have said it the clearest (emphasis is mine):

Republicans argue that the emergency lending program created under the March CARES law needs to be wound down as envisioned by that law, saying leaving it open would amount to a slush fund for the incoming Biden administration.

Hill negotiators race to finalize Covid relief deal as fight over Federal Reserve bogs down talks

After Mnuchin and the Trumpers had used it as a slush fund for Trump and friends? This is their objection? I guess two wrongs don’t make a right, but #BidenHarris aren’t going to act as corruptly as the Repubes will accuse them as acting. It is maddening that this kind of hypocrisy continues to be accepted by the media, the Trump core supporters, and the independent voter as legitimate political discourse.

You may recall that back in March when the CARES Act was being debated and PPP was first revealed to the US, the Repubes wanted it to be a discretionary fund to be dispersed by Mnuchin without Congressional oversight or any attempt at transparency. After the scheme to defraud Americans of billions more of tax dollars was exposed in the run-up to the passage of the Act, provisions were put in place to help assure that it wouldn’t be used as a Trump-family slush fund to reward loyalists. Even with that hue and cry and rules and policies directing its use, investigation into its dispersal caused a Collinsesque concern to wash over the Repubes in the Senate as a troubling pattern emerged. Funny how so much of the money found its way into Trump’s bank account or the very wealthy including mega-churches.

I guess it’s no wonder with their side being so fond of greed-flavored Slushies, the Repubes would naturally be suspicious of #BidenHarris’ intent for the fund. It is difficult to believe that they won’t be tempted to line Hunter Biden’s Chinese pockets (Notice how no one harps on the Hunter-Ukraine link any more? Now, it’s all China! China! China!).

It is abundantly clear, though, that when the Dems manage a beneficial program like the ACA, it helps them politically. The Repubes will stop at nothing to deny them the opportunity.

But, there have been others: funding for state and local governments has been a mighty objection because the Repubes can’t see America as America populated by Americans any more. They can only see it as red and blue states with blue states populated only by Dems. They made up the flimsy excuse that any funding for state and local governments would reward bad management and, god forbid, the lockdowns of the spring and summer. You know, herd mentality, as the Ol’ Pussy Grabber parapraxed.

It was the presence of stimulus checks and then their size going through numerous gyrations and contortions. First, it was no stimulus checks and then it was they can’t be over $600.00 because god-forbid real live American citizens actually have a little jingle in their pockets and bounce in their steps as they misspend their way to wrack and ruin on the highway to hell. Proving once again that the definition of conservative is the worry that someone some where is getting away with something they shouldn’t except, of course, if they’re a close personal friend or very wealthy.

We received a special treat when the Ol’ Pussy Grabber himself weighed in with the recommendation that the stimulus checks be at least $1200.00 or maybe even $2000.00. Of course, this was just one more effort to salve his narcissistic wound by either delaying or completing scuttling the possibility of a #COVID19 relief bill. Not only would it hurt #BidenHarris, it would hurt every American. Hurting as many people as possible is an imperative for Trump now because we all must be punished for not returning him to office.

It’s funny how the original sticking point of corporate liability protection, you know the McConnell Get Out of Jail-Free Card as it was going to be called for any corporation that wagered on how many of their employees would catch #COVID19 and later sicken and die. Because if we held them accountable for abusing their employees in blatantly callous ways, where would it stop? Eventually we’d be living in Venezuela and no body wants that, right? He’s doing us all a favor really.

As we covered in these posts, thinking is hard and people avoid it when and where possible. However, it is even harder to think when the airwaves are being constantly flooded by confusing contradictory confounding information. It is clear that with this latest objection to the PPP extension, something that should’ve been brought up much sooner, I mean, it’s not like Pat Toomey (R-ReSpOnSiBlE gOvErNaNcE) woke up yesterday morning and realized OMG if left to Repube devices, #BidenHarris will just be lining their pockets with all that PPP lucre and leaving the Repubes out in the cold! We can’t have that! Quick! We must do something!

The only person who has been holding up #COVID19 relief since May is Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell when he left the HEROES Act to rot and die an ignoble death. He may be using all kinds of funny fancy language like make law and land the plane to make it sound like he has no ability to control his conference and no influence over the legislation that is written. For the past six weeks the rank and vile Repubes in the Senate have been willing to vote for whatever #COVID19 relief he tells them to, he just hasn’t told them to.

We’ll close this post with the usual Call Your MoC stuff: (1) a script to use in calling or writing, (2) a starter tweet for tweeting Mitch, (3) tips for calling your MoC, i.e. be polite, (4) what to do if their voice mailbox is full, and (5) how to find the contact information for your MoC including phone numbers, office addresses, email addresses, and social media platforms.

Call Your MoC Information

The Script

Adapt this script for phone calls and emails.

Hi, my name is [NAME] and I’m a constituent from [STATE and LOCALITY].

I’m calling today to urge you to support the bipartisan #COVID19 relief bill. There is a lot of debate on what types of relief should be included. Please support extensions of unemployment insurance, $1200.00 stimulus checks, rent and eviction protection, support for state and local governments, paycheck protection for small and moderate sized businesses.

I can’t believe that we are using the corruption of the Trump administration as an excuse for deliberately impeding the effectiveness of the Biden administration, but we’ve come to expect no less than obstructionism from a McConnell led GOP Senate. The American people need the help and support of our federal government.

Thank you for your time and attention.

IF LEAVING A VOICEMAIL: please leave your full street address to ensure your call is tallied.

Tweet Mitch

The American people need stimulus checks, UI bonuses and extensions, eviction moratoriums. renters assist. Local gov’ts need help. Small business need help. Corps don’t need liability protection. Pass the bipartisan relief bill

Tips for Calling

When you call your representative’s office, please remember the following:

  • Only contact YOUR MoC! They only listen to their constituents and dismiss requests from non-constituents.Ask for the aide working on the policy-related issues.
  • Be polite! No matter whose office you’re calling. No matter what their positions are. No matter how inflamed you are about the issue — and you should be very passionate — be polite.
  • Remember that the people you are talking to are people! So, be nice.
  • Call during business hours of the area code their office is in. Typically, that is 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM.
  • Have a script or notes to follow so you don’t forget anything.
  • Maybe call with friends. You know like a party.

In Addition to Calling

I’ve heard back from readers that some MoC’s voice mail boxes are always full! It’s as if they don’t want to hear from their constituents. Kinda like those MoC’s who don’t hold town halls or other open forum meetings. Here are some other ways to contact your MoC:

  • Send a postcard to their office. Nothing says I care like kicking it old school and using snail mail.
  • Email their office. Lay out your concerns in a brief email and send it in. We all know how easy it is to email. Make sure you include the issue you are addressing in the subject line.
  • Use the contact page on their website. This is the surest way of getting a message to them. Each MoC has an official government website and each has a contact page that comes with it automatically.
  • Contact them using social media. It’s hard to break through all the noise on social media, but it can’t hurt to try given all the time we all spend using it. Be sure to tag your MoC’s when social mediaing about about a specific issue. Be clear and respectful, though, when addressing an issue that you want your MoC to act upon. Make sure you let them know you are a constituent.

Contacting Your MoC

Find out how to contact your MoC using these links!

  • Common Cause will give you the names, party affiliation, direct phone number, website link, and social media platforms of all of your federal, state, and local elected officials.
  • GovTrack gives you the names, addresses, phone numbers, email addresses, and Twitter handles of your senators and representative. It is pretty straightforward and easy to use. Just plug-in your address. You can also track legislation.
  • USA.gov is the official guide to information and services of the US government. This page explains clearly how to contact everyone from the Ol’ Pussy Grabber to your representative to specific government agencies. Through it you can find the following information about your MoC’s:
    • Their phone numbers: DC and state offices
    • Their mailing addresses both in DC and their state offices
    • Official website with their contact page including email, request a meeting, town hall schedules, and social media
    • And, the committees they sit on
  • 5 Calls: Sign-up for 5 Calls because they help you contact your member of Congress and keep you abreast of on going issues that are important to you! Now, that is a good deal.
  • The Capital Hill Switch Board: (202) 224-3121.
  • MassacreMitch and #MoscowMitch: His DC office, (202) 224-2541.
  • Nancy Pelosi: Her DC office, (202) 225-4965; her California office, (415) 556-4862
  • The Ol’ Pussy Grabber: The WH switchboard, (202) 456-1414 or the comments line at (202) 456-1111 during business hours

Join Indivisible

Follow the link to Indivisible to find a group near you, their campaigns, events in your neighborhood, and download their handy-dandy booklet!

Image Attribution

“Look carefully before sitting on the toilet” by slworking2 is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

14 replies »

  1. We see here all the same reasons that Obama couldn’t get a truly adequate relief bill for the financial crash (except for certain banks, insurance companies, and auto makers, with much screaming, weeping, tearing of hair and rending of garments by Republicans) considered, or the Great Mythical Infrastructure Bill. Even if the Dems win both Senate seats in Georgia, the story for Biden will be much the same with GOP resistance and obstruction at every opportunity (Not to mention the packed courts thanks to Mitch.) The refusal to help the state and local governments is particularly cruel and short sighted unless the essential point is to prove that government just can’t work at any level no matter who is elected (Thank you Ronnie for that famous quote.)

    When it comes to the corporate immunity plan, the message to working people seems to be that that they don’t care if “Work or Die” actually means “Work and Die”. The People are expendable. The stock price is not.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Howdy Bob!

      Mitch McConnell and the GOP showed their true selves with this “negotiation” over the stimulus bill. With people losing homes and being foreclosed on once again, the rich are picking up houses for rentals. I suppose that’s the way they’d like it All housing is owned by corporations and everyone is a renter with few rights. One thing I realized living in China was that even authoritarian governments had to take care of their middle class or face revolts. That is the surest way to revolution, abuse the middle class. The Republicans don’t seem to have understood this. They take our status in the world and the stability of the nation for granted. We will all suffer in the end for their shortsightedness. Honestly, the best thing the Democrats could do right now is sponsor the Lincoln Project as an alternative conservative party to peel votes away from the Republicans and hopefully win in some red states as a result.

      Huzzah!
      Jack

      Liked by 1 person

      • Thomas Friedman has a piece in the OP-Ed section of the NYT today (Wednesday, 12/23) speaking to that very point. Arguing that “Principled Conservatives” need to start their own party and abandon the GOP.

        Trump’s demand that the amount of the checks in the Relief bill be increased to $2,000.00 from $600.00 flies in the face of the Congressional Repubs, especially Mitch and those others who are not backing his election fraud claims (response to narcissistic wound). So does his veto today of the Defense Authorization Bill, which will force the Republicans on The Hill to back changing it to suit him or vote to override on Monday. And, if they do go with the override, that will be a wound second only to loosing the election. I continue to be amazed and disappointed at how much of the analysis and discussion of his actions fails to take his narcissism into account in explaining what he does.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Howdy Bob!

          I’m glad to hear that Thomas Friedman is a friend of Ye Olde Blogge and that I’m having an impact.

          I agree about the narcissism and pundits thing. They will frequently say that Trump only cares about himself, but they don’t go deeper into narcissism than that. I understand that they aren’t experts, but they could be reading what experts are saying — not me, mind you, but Bandy Lee and Elizabeth Mika. The only pundit that has gotten close to understanding the narcissist dynamic is Tony Schwartz who co-wrote “Art of the Deal.”

          As predicted, Trump is just trying to punish the GOP by defying whatever they want to do in Congress. He’s putting them in three no-win positions: (1a) Forcing them to choose between shorting Americans with #COVID19 or “breaking the bank.” They’re fucked either way they go. (1b) The effect of this twist on Purdue and Loeffler is just amazing. They’re boasting that they’ve delivered for Georgians, and, now, by juxtaposition, he just outed them as being Grinches and begrudgingly gone along with the compromise amount. (2) Forcing them to over-ride his veto and expose themselves as defying his will and judgment, and, as we’ve seen, policy is less important than who is espousing what view. His supporters support him, not the GOP. And (3) forcing them to support the Congressional challenge to the election on 6 January by openly debating and voting on whether to support Trump or democracy and law. He’s put them in such a bind. He knows it. McConnell knows it. They all know it. Ultimately, it forces the GOP to support democracy and law on all three.

          Huzzah!
          Jack

          Like

          • He is making clear that there is the Party Of Trump, and that if the GOP is going to be the POT they have to follow orders even when there are no orders. It reminds me of “learning” experiments that amounted to “How to drive a dog (rat, pigeon, monkey, whatever) crazy. The subjects were presented with two stimuli, for example, a circle and a square, and had to learn to distinguish them to earn a reward. Then, the circle was gradually made more square and the square more round until the critter couldn’t tell the difference. The animal, which had come to understand that it was in a context of performing a “telling the difference” task was now put into a gambling or coin flipping context it did not understand and developed various sorts of “neurotic” or dysfunctional behaviors. The scientists failed to understand that they were basically gaslighting the poor beast.

            What Trump is doing to the Republicans on the Hill and elsewhere is putting them in a Double Bind (or even multiple, intersecting Double Binds. [https://exploringyourmind.com/gregory-batesons-double-bind-theory/]

            Meanwhile, I think he has now pardoned everybody convicted by the Mueller team (except Cohen, who turned on him). Never the less, the narcissistic wound that the probe ever existed will remain.

            Liked by 1 person

            • Howdy Bob!

              One of the things that Tim Snyder talked about in his book, On Tyranny, is that the followers of tyrants obey in advance. They do things that they think the tyrant wants them to do by gleaning intent from his communications. That’s one reason why the Republican House Idiot Caucus started talking about objecting to the electoral vote count BEFORE Trump did. They were anticipating that objecting would be something he’d want them to do. Congressional Republicans knew not to talk about President-elect Biden after the election was called without seeing it in published talking-points. But, that’s not what’s happening here with the #COVID19 relief bill. Trump is trying to punish the Congressional Republicans by gumming up the works with his demands. He’s forced them to vote against the $2,000.00 stimulus checks. It could easily cost Loeffler and Purdue their seats and the Senate, which is fine by Trump since it just inflicts that much more pain he can inflict on them. He is no longer out to do anything other than wreak havoc and punish those who have done him wrong.

              Huzzah!
              Jack

              Liked by 1 person

              • And, in forcing an override on the defense bill and possibly the Budget/Covid bill, he is courting narcissistic wounds second only to losing the election. But, he will not see that (or those) wound (or wounds) as self-inflicted. In his universe there is no such thing, at least for him.

                Liked by 1 person

                • I guess that’s the “beauty” of being a narcissist: never being responsible for anything going wrong even your own narcissistic wounds. So, narcissism is never saying I’m sorry to yourself, to paraphrase Eric Segal’s definition of love?

                  Huzzah!
                  Jack

                  Liked by 1 person

                  • A further thought on Luck and the Narcissist: There is no such thing as bad luck for a narcissist. He is lucky to be who he is and luck is always with him. His wounds and losses are always due to the actions or inaction of others, enemies and failures, and enmity is always personal, not ideological or a disagreement on policy.

                    Liked by 1 person

                    • Howdy Bob!

                      When you literally believe that you are god’s gift to humanity, the pinnacle of divine creation, the best at everything you do even when doing it for the first time, and going to win every contest, conflict, or confrontation, then you gotta think you are luckier than everyone else. I’m reminded of the time Trump was touring the CDC and claimed that the scientists there wondered aloud to him how he knew so much about “this.” He said, he was born with it or something to that effect. When he was speculating that bleach an sunlight could be introduced into the human body to fight #COVID19, you could see him being impressed with himself. You could see him thinking that the folks at home hearing him would be thinking, “Damn, he’s right! Why didn’t our scientists think of that? That Trump sure is smart.”

                      And, the GOP has saddled us with this idiot for four years.

                      Huzzah!
                      Jack

                      Liked by 1 person

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