But today was a first from a presidential campaign asking me to help to phone-bomb the opposition and then report back to Chicage HQ to let them know "how the call went."
I guess the thrill has worn off, because I just got another email from Obama Campaign Chief Jim Messina. He notes that since my own particular congressman and senators are all Democrats, I should just call John Boehner direct (202.225.0600) and then report back to Obamaland. (I guess Obama doesn't really mean it when he blames his own party, too, for their alleged bargaining intransigence. When he says he wants to take heat from his own party, I think what he really means is he wants to just bask in its glow) From the Messina missive:
Here's what's happening: President Obama proposed the balanced approach of raising the debt ceiling paired with responsible steps to reduce our country's long-term debt --
groveling before and beggingasking oil companies, corporations, and the richest Americans to do their part rather than shoving austerity down the throats ofplacing the entire burden on seniors and the middle class.
A deal has been close at times, but an ideological faction of House Republicans has been effectively holding our economy hostage -- making extreme demands like ending Medicare as we know it, gutting Social Security, and rejecting any compromises that might make millionaires or big corporations pay their fair share to
end the obscene wealth disparity and create jobsget our debt under control.
|Don't Quit Me, John|
Our records show you have only Democratic representatives in Congress. But House Speaker John Boehner -- who is leading the Republicans in negotiations -- needs to hear what
I want you to tell himAmericans like you think.
Here's what the President said on Monday:
"The American people may have voted for divided government, but they didn't vote for a dysfunctional government. So I'm asking you all to make your voice heard. If you want a balanced approach to reducing the deficit, let your member of Congress know. If you believe we can solve this problem through compromise, send that message."
The President doesn't make a direct request of all of us like this very often. Take a minute right now to call Speaker Boehner -- then let us know how it went,
so we can figure out just how dwindling out base of support really is.
I don't want any more compromise. I don't want a balanced approach, which stands for continued corporate welfare for the rich, with just a tad of chained CPI on my future Social Security benefits. I don't think it's a good idea to raise the Medicare eligibility age to "balance out" the beleaguered wealthy "folks" losing mortgage deductions on their vacation homes. We the People have been compromised enough.
Right after the Messina missive arrived, I got another email from Showdown in America also asking that I call Congress, for an entirely different reason:
You can make a real difference and change the debate in
Call your Representative and tell them to Make Pay their fair share to raise revenues and create jobs.
Let your Representative know you won't stand for cuts to Social Security, Medicaid and Medicare—and neither should they!
We're not in a debt crisis; we're in a revenue crisis. And it's high time the folks that broke the economy—Wall Street, Bank of America, big banks, oil companies, and big boys—paid their fair share to fix it. It's time to change the debate in Washington. today.
On second thought, I believe I will take Messina's advice and call Boehner..... using the script from Showdown in America. Then I will report back to Chicago Obama HQ and and let them know what I said, and how it went. If you, too, want to call the Weeper and complain, here's a suggested talking point:
Politicians never tire of tropes, and there’s one tickling many on their tongues these days: Americans want Washington to deal with its debt, just like we do in our own families. Which is funny, given that American families have never been so deeply indebted. In 2004, total U.S. family debt exceeded income for the first time since the Federal Reserve began tracking it, according to a Center for American Progress report.It was the best of times, it is the worst of times.
Update 7/28: I got through to Boehner's office and talked to a living person. I then reported my call to Messina. In the answer box titled "How did (blank) respond to your request for bipartisanship in debt ceiling negotiations", I wrote: "First, I don't care about the debt ceiling phony crisis and I told her so. I said I cared about jobs, jobs and nothing but the jobs. I said I didn't want him and Obama reaching any Grand Bargain about my future social security benefits. She said 'Thank You Very Much. I will see to it that the Speaker is made aware of your concerns.' (pure boilerplate constituent-speak).