Office Visits to Sens. Durbin and Harkin regarding Pentagon spending
Congressional leaders are deciding this month whether or not to delay or replace significant budget cuts before they start going into effect in January 2013.
A more fair and just solution is simple: instead of balancing the budget on the backs of the most vulnerable, restore lost tax revenue from the wealthiest and keep cuts to planned Pentagon growth at at $1 trillion.
As Senate Majority Whip and a member of the bipartisan “gang of eight," Illinois Senator Durbin is one of the most influential decision makers on this issue. When a deal on the budget is reached, Senator Durbin is sure to be in the room. During this critical time, we need to encourage him to protect human needs and look to savings in the Pentagon instead.
Sen. Harkin is also influential as the Chair of the Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee. In his report he points out the impacts of budget cuts in current law on human needs programs. Already, he states, "the economic effects of cuts to nondefense programs could be worse than cuts to Pentagon spending."
A group of us will be visiting Sen. Durbin's and Sen. Harkin's local offices soon. Please let us know if you might be interested in joining!
If you would like to take additional action, you can send a short personalized letter to the editor mentioning your Senators' names using this online tool. You can also fax a letter (sample and fact sheet attached) to Sen. Durbin's office at (202) 228-0400 care of Nathan Sandals and Rob Leonard (staff on budget and military issues) or to Sen. Harkin's office at (202) 224-9369 care of Richard Bender and Joseph Jones.
The fact sheets I handed out and more can be found here under "for the wonks" and "see the action center." Remember, you don't have to be an expert on the facts to be effective at grassroots lobbying. Speaking about who you are and why an issue matters to you personally is the most important part. (The second most important is asking questions and keeping in touch.)
My understanding was that you would collect signatures on the sign-ons and then request the visit/call with Sen. Durbin's office. Please feel free to give me a call if I can be of assistance with this process.
I look forward to being in touch!
For Peace with Justice,
Campaigns Network Building Associate
Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL)