With last week’s tax bill debacle, both in the House and in the Senate, it is fair to ask if the Indivisible guide – or the resistance agenda – are working.
One of the guide’s central premise was that the fear of not being re-elected if emphasized enough through Indivisible actions would prevent lawmakers from passing undesirable bills. Can’t be more wrong on that one now. Most GOP reps in the House who are vulnerable in 2018 voted for the Tax Bill anyway.
Advocacy tactics central to the guide were townhalls, local public events, district office visits, and coordinated calls. Again in view of the tax bill, can’t say these worked either. Even the massive volume of calls to senators – even with ads and Facebook paid posts exhorting people to call – did not impact any senator vote.
To be fair, the original success of Indivisible was – and their mission still is today - to fuel a progressive grassroots network of local groups… and that is what they have done astoundingly, resoundingly well, thousands and thousands of times, all across the nation.
Though the mission continued: “…local groups to resist Trump agenda”. The record is more mixed on that.
The Indivisible guide, and website, and call for actions need to evolve and adapt. The group has received millions in donations, but it is not exactly clear what they’ve done with this – at least in common public knowledge. Also one of the key assets of Indivisible, is its searchable directory of groups – but while that’s still hugely useful, it needs a massive overhaul, because not kept up-of-date, and with no way to determine what group is active or not, and which group has 5,000 members and which ones have one.
Also to be fair, many Indivisible groups have already evolved, and gone way beyond the original guide, and re-invented themselves.
So if the Indivisible agenda has not worked, what will?
1. The Indivisible actions to resists the Trump agenda do work. Without them, it would be worst, much worst. We need to continue – and persist, relentlessly – and improve them.
2. But the other bottom line is: we need to win elections, win elections, win elections.
How do you win elections? Get Dems to vote, get Dems to vote, get Dems to vote. It’s that simple.
You may say: what election? I am not seating around until the next election.
Well, the next election is just 8 days away. It is the election of a US Senator, in a state where we would have never dreamed of electing a Democrat. Alabama.
Needless to say, win-election action for that one is NOW.
And you – and your group, Indivisible or whatever - can act now – wherever you are in the nation.
There are at least 4 things you can do:
1. Send postcards to voters (the last day to send postcards to AL for receipt by election day is today – but remember this site and other postcards site for future elections, wherever they may be).
2. Get out the vote via texting – this great organization Open Progress will start texting voters later this week with their partner Red2Blue.
3. Phonebank from your home.
4. Donate to Doug Jones campaign or groups supporting them.
And – wait - if we win that AL election, then maybe we WILL defeat the tax bill, with one more Dem Senator, if the bill comes back to the Senate for a final vote after reconciliation.
After Alabama, find out about other special elections, again wherever they may be, such as the PA 8 special election in March for Conor Lamb.
Then you, and your group should start preparing for the US congressional elections.
The most impactful way of limiting the damage – the carnage – from Trump in the last 2 years of his administration, is to flip as many US congressional seats as possible in November next year.
Find which congressional districts are flippable (or Dem-vulnerable) in your state, or better close to you, and get organized for maximum action after the primaries – including the 4 actions listed above, but also the most important one, the on-the-ground - canvassing - action.