Rep. John Sarbanes
600 Baltimore Ave.
Towson, MD 21204
October 15, 2014
Dear Representative Sarbanes:
This month, we celebrate Halloween by calling on Congress to deliver treats—not tricks—as we move into November with Election Day and the Lame Duck session to follow. Members of the Pledge of Resistance-Baltimore are voters and supporters of Progressive Democrats of America, and we ask you to cosponsor the following legislation, if you haven't already, and to preserve Congressional authority regarding international agreements.
Clean, fair, inclusive and open elections are essential to the legitimacy of our system. Therefore, we call upon you to cosponsor the Democracy Restoration Act (H.R. 4459): to let 5 million voters who’ve paid their debt to society vote. Please contact Rep. John Conyers’ office at 202-225-5126 to cosponsor. We also urge you to cosponsor the Voter Empowerment Act (H.R. 12): to modernize voter registration, promote access to voting for individuals with disabilities, and to protect the right and ability of individuals to vote for Federal office. Please contact Rep. John Lewis’ office at (202) 225-3801 to cosponsor.
We must move away from counterproductive military responses to conflicts, and employ strong diplomacy instead, therefore please cosponsor H. Con. Res. 114 “Urging Congress to debate and vote on a statutory authorization for any sustained United States combat role in Iraq or Syria.” Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org with the Progressive Caucus or call Rep. Raúl Grijalva’s office at (202) 225-2435 to cosponsor.
As we seek to demilitarize our responses abroad, we must do the same domestically. Military equipment deployed by police forces makes our communities look like war zones, and this threatens—rather than promotes—public safety and order. Therefore, we ask you to cosponsor the Stop Militarizing Law Enforcement Act (H.R. 5478). Please contact Rep. “Hank” Johnson’s office at (202) 225-1605 to cosponsor.
The Administration is seeking “Fast Track” authorization for pending wide-ranging agreements. Votes may come up during a lame duck session. “Fast Track” is an extreme and rarely used procedure that lets the executive branch push bad deals through Congress without adequate deliberation. Good deals don’t need “Fast Track,” or any other circumvention of Congressional authority. We call upon you to oppose “Fast Track,” “Smart Track,” and any other expedited approval procedures, and to oppose all clandestinely negotiated deals including the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP).
Finally, we are seeking an end to the use of killer drone strikes, which we believe to be illegal and unconstitutional. We ask you to speak out against this assassination program, which ignores any veneer of due process. Consider as well a request for the full, unclassified release of information surrounding the administration’s drone policy.
We look forward to your response. And when you are ready, we would like to meet with you, preferably in Baltimore. But if necessary, we will travel to your D.C. office. We thank you for your consideration regarding these critically important issues, and look forward to ongoing discussion and engagement with you in the coming months.
Max Obuszewski, on behalf of Pledge of Resistance-Baltimore/Fund Our Communities
Apt. 206, 431 Notre Dame Lane, Baltimore 21212
Donations can be sent to the Baltimore Nonviolence Center, 325 E. 25th St., Baltimore, MD 21218. Ph: 410-366-1637; Email: mobuszewski [at] verizon.net. Go to http://baltimorenonviolencecenter.blogspot.com/
"The master class has always declared the wars; the subject class has always fought the battles. The master class has had all to gain and nothing to lose, while the subject class has had nothing to gain and everything to lose--especially their lives." Eugene Victor Debs