Joint Meeting with Marilyn Strickland and the Four CD-10 Indivisible Groups
February 11, 2021
Olympia Indivisible, Indivisible Tacoma, Indivisible Puyallup, Grey Indivisible
Legislative Aide, Sean De Witz, introduced himself. He works in the Lakewood office. His portfolio includes working with the Pierce County government, tribal governments, and Labor groups. The four Indivisible groups congratulated Congresswoman Strickland on her victory along with the victory of President Biden and VP Harris and the Georgia Senators’ victory.
Congresswoman Strickland’s committee assignments were reviewed. She is on the Transportation Committee and wants to see comprehensive legislation passed. She has an ongoing relationship with Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg because both were mayors. She is looking forward to working with him. Her concerns are ensuring Covid vaccinations for infrastructure project workers, assisting shipping industries in remaining competitive, waterways infrastructure, continuing work on I-5 to ease congestion, building out rural broadband, and expanding light rail to smaller cities.
She is also on the Armed Services Committee, by request of Speaker Pelosi, since JBLM is in her district. She is most concerned with affordable housing for military personnel who live off-base (the majority.)
- We want to see consequences for January 6th collaborators and perpetrators of “the Big Lie” in Congress. USPS – remove Louis DeJoy and work to restore the USPS.
- Strickland does not know of any bills at this time, but she condemns the January 6th insurrection.
George Floyd Policing Act and the Reparations Act, HR 40
- We support the George Floyd act which deals with profiling, training, and education. We need a consistent disciplinary policy. We would like to see a commission established to study reparations for Blacks.
- Strickland is a co-sponsor of HR 40. She supports the George Floyd Act but believes the relationship between cities and police needs to be studied.
Reinstate Voter Rights
- Ensure the For the People Act, HR 1, and the John Lewis Voting Rights Act, HR 4, are passed.
- Campaign finance reform is also a priority for Strickland. She hates “dialing for dollars.”
- We asked that Supreme Court reform be made a priority (appellate and district courts, too.) We have just two years to get it done. Conservatives are stacking the courts working for the party, not the people. Many different plans should be investigated.
- Strickland supports court reform and understands the timeline. Her legislative director is studying it.
- We want bold, immediate action on climate change. The IPCC says we have so little time left to reverse global warming and all its negative effects. We want to hold Congress accountable for Biden’s declaration that this is one of his four top priorities.
- Strickland has joined the Climate Recovery Caucus, initiated by Washington Congressman Derek Kilmer, as an ally and co-leader. She supports Biden’s prioritization and wants to focus on supporting Puget Sound issues. Sean is working with the Nisqually tribe on efforts to rebuild the salmon population.
- We asked that Strickland familiarize herself with William Barber’s Poor People’s Campaign for economic and justice equity.
- The information will be passed on to her.
Rescind Trump’s Tax Cut
- We support Warren’s policy on tax fairness. What will Strickland do for relief for average people?
- Strickland does not like the lack of fairness and will always vote for the people of CD-10, not for donors. She believes tax reform is needed.
Washington D.C. and Puerto Rico Statehood
- We support, does Strickland?
- Strickland supports D.C. statehood and believes there should be no taxation without representation. Lack of certainty about her position on Puerto Rico; the question will be forwarded to her.
- We would like to see federal legalization.
- Strickland supports legalizations especially for cannabis growers to have access to federal bank loans. Also looking at how to expunge related criminal records and impacts on low-income communities.
- Strickland’s first Town Hall is scheduled for February 24 @6:30 and will be broadcast on Facebook and linked to her website [recording should now be available.]
- Direct Meetings: Strickland may be available in March and April. Priority is being given to tribal and environmental groups.
- Her office is a resource for Covid vaccination information. Her offices most likely will be open for visits by the end of the year.
MoCs Team Meeting with Senator Maria Cantwell February 23, 2021
Senator Murray’s aide was unavailable. We met with Senator Cantwell’s aide, Casey Duff. We thanked Senator Cantwell for her vote to convict in the impeachment trial of Donald Trump. Now that it is over, we support the focus on Covid relief and infrastructure. We also thanked her for co-signing on S 51, which would grant statehood to the District of Columbia.
John Lewis Voting Rights Act (HR 4)
- We expressed concerns about the lack of Republican support and asked what the possibilities are to negotiate with them.
- Cantwell is co-sponsoring a bill, the Vote At Home Act, modeled on Washington state’s system. It is smaller than HR 4. She thinks voting rights have a better chance of passing in HR 1.
President Biden’s Covid Bill, Infrastructure Bill, and Climate Change Bill
- We asked for her strong support for all of these bills.
- Cantwell supports the Covid bill and the Infrastructure bill. Since a Climate Change bill package has not yet been submitted, there was no statement on that. She supports Senator Sanders Raise the Minimum Wage initiative. She likes the Washington state model for raising the minimum wage, and we were told that Senator Murray does too. She supports the president’s provisions re: the stimulus eligibility payments. Casey was not sure of Cantwell’s position on the child poverty reduction payments of $3600 per child, but she is co-sponsoring the Child Dependent Care Tax Act. She believes tax credits are easier to pass with Republican support. Her focus now is on getting relief money to local governments and tribes, and extending unemployment benefits. Cantwell will play an active role in the second reconciliation bill on Infrastructure (Casey says Senator Murray will play an even stronger role.) This is a priority for her. Her focus is on upgrades to mass transportation and transportation of goods (she has talked with Secretary Buttigieg about these issues), rural broadband (she has been talking with the tribes about funds for broadband.) She believes investing in green energy is important, including energy grid preparedness.
- Will Senator Cantwell sign on to the U.S. Citizenship Act of 2021? We support a humane policy on immigration.
- Cantwell does support this bill and favors a pathway to citizenship. She is glad the Dream Act passed and wants to see major reform in immigration policy. She believes there should be congressional oversight of ICE and DHS, which will be easier with a friendly administration.
Fact-Based Reporting and Social Media Accountability
- We believe the loss of a common understanding of fact and reality poses one of the greatest threats to our democracy. We suggest following Australia’s lead. What is the Senator’s position? What is achievable? Can the Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee, which she chairs, has influence?
- Cantwell does believe social media be held accountable and it must be regulated to protect the privacy and stop the spread of disinformation. However, the latter will be difficult without curtailing speech, and regulating the internet will be difficult.
- We support President Biden’s proposals for instituting higher taxes on the wealthy. What are the chances of them passing? Couldn’t wealth taxes pay for infrastructure projects? What about Warren’s tax plan?
- Cantwell believes the chances of passing are not good. Certainly not before the Covid relief package and the infrastructure package are passed. A robust conversation is anticipated after that. Cantwell did oppose the Trump tax cuts. Casey was unable to answer our specific questions but will pass them on to the senator.
- We asked for the removal of the current Board of Governors and the protection of the vote-by-mail process. Why is Louis de Joy still the Postmaster-General?
- Cantwell says there is pushback from Republicans regarding appointing a new board. This is more an issue for the Biden administration, not Congress, to deal with. But she is willing to pressure the Biden Administration for change.