URGENT: Can you call Sens. Schumer and Gillibrand? Tell them: "I'm calling to urge you to publicly support President Obama's diplomacy with Iran and oppose the Menendez sanctions legislation that would undermine negotiations."
Pro-war senators—many of whom voted to support the march to war in Iraq—are just eight co-sponsors shy of having enough votes to override a promised presidential veto of their dangerous new Iran sanctions legislation—a bill that could torpedo President Obama's diplomatic negotiations. In the words of Bernadette Meehan, National Security Council spokeswoman for the White House: "If certain members of Congress want the United States to take military action, they should be up-front with the American public and say so."1
We can turn this around if we act now. We know our voices make a huge difference in foreign policy—we saw the impact we had in preventing military action against Syria, as well as in creating the political space for President Obama to meet with the president of Iran. Pro-war lobby groups are doing all that they can to make sure their voices are heard—it's up to us to make sure they aren't the only voices in this debate.Will you call your senators' offices today and make sure that they know their constituents oppose new sanctions on Iran that would put us on the path to another senseless conflict in the Middle East?
Yes, I'll call:
Never done something like this before? Don't worry, we'll take you through step by step. First scroll down to the bottom of this email to see if your senator has co-sponsored the bill.
If your senator has co-sponsored the bill, you can say something like:
Hi, my name is <name> and I'm a constituent of yours. How are you? Great. I'm calling because I'm <add a line about who you are—i.e., a grandmother, a veteran, Iranian-American> and I'm disappointed that you've supported increasing sanctions on Iran at this time. I believe this move undermines diplomatic negotiations and could lead to another conflict in the Middle East. I urge you to reconsider your support for the Menendez legislation and support President Obama's diplomacy with Iran.
If they haven't co-sponsored the bill, you might like to say:
Hi, my name is <name> and I'm a constituent of yours. How are you? Great. I'm calling because I'm <add a line about who you are— i.e., a grandmother, a veteran, Iranian-American> and I'm worried about the proposed Menendez legislation that would increase sanctions on Iran and take us down a path that could lead to military action. I wanted to urge your office to publicly support President Obama's diplomacy with Iran and oppose any new sanctions that would undermine negotiations.
You don't have to use the script word for word—feel free to say things in your own voice. You can pick which of your senators you'd like to call, or even better, call both.
Even if your senators have come out against the bill or are progressive champions, it's crucial that they hear from you. Why? Because they are under huge pressure from pro-war lobby groups to change their stance.
What if your senator is already a co-sponsor? They need to hear from you too. Just because someone has co-sponsored this bill doesn't mean that they're pushing for it to come to a vote. If they get enough pushback from their constituents, they may ask Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to help ensure that the bill doesn't ever reach the floor. Below are a list of all the Senators who have cosponsored the bill.
I know it's tempting to press the back button thinking you'll come back to this later—but chances are you won't. Please take five minutes and make the call now, because it's the most effective thing you can do to help promote diplomacy and keep us off the path of war.
Thank you for all you do.–Sara Haghdoosti, on behalf of Berim.org
P.S. Here is a list of senators (43 Republicans and 16 Democrats total) who have co-sponsored Menendez's bill to increase sanctions on Iran and undermine diplomacy. Remember to let us know how it went here.
Alexander, Lamar [R-TN]Ayotte, Kelly [R-NH]Barrasso, John [R-WY]Begich, Mark [D-AK]Bennet, Michael [D-CO]Blumenthal, Richard [D-CT]Blunt, Roy [R-MO]Booker, Cory [D-NJ]Boozman, John [R-AR]Burr, Richard [R-NC]Cardin, Benjamin [D-MD]Casey, Robert "Bob" [D-PA]Chambliss, Saxby [R-GA]Coats, Daniel [R-IN]Coburn, Thomas [R-OK]Cochran, Thad [R-MS]Collins, Susan [R-ME]Coons, Chris [D-DE]Corker, Bob [R-TN]Cornyn, John [R-TX]Crapo, Michael [R-ID]Cruz, Ted [R-TX]Donnelly, Joe [D-IN]Enzi, Michael [R-WY]Fischer, Deb [R-NE]Gillibrand, Kirsten [D-NY]Graham, Lindsey [R-SC]Grassley, Charles "Chuck" [R-IA]Hagan, Kay [D-NC]Hatch, Orrin [R-UT]Heller, Dean [R-NV]Hoeven, John [R-ND]Inhofe, James "Jim" [R-OK]Isakson, John "Johnny" [R-GA]Johanns, Mike [R-NE]Johnson, Ron [R-WI]Kirk, Mark [R-IL]Landrieu, Mary [D-LA]Lee, Mike [R-UT]Manchin, Joe [D-WV]McCain, John [R-AZ]McConnell, Mitch [R-KY]Moran, Jerry [R-KS]Murkowski, Lisa [R-AK]Portman, Robert "Rob" [R-OH]Pryor, Mark [D-AR]Risch, James [R-ID]Roberts, Pat [R-KS]Rubio, Marco [R-FL]Schumer, Charles [D-NY]Scott, Tim [R-SC]Sessions, Jefferson "Jeff" [R-AL]Shelby, Richard [R-AL]Thune, John [R-SD]Toomey, Patrick "Pat" [R-PA]Vitter, David [R-LA]Warner, Mark [D-VA]Wicker, Roger [R-MS]
1. "White House Dares Democratic Senators Pushing Iran Sanctions To Admit They Want War," Huffington Post, Jan 10, 2014.