Dear MoveOn member,
One of the most respected pollsters in the country has released stunning new polling on impeachment.
The pollster, Ann Selzer, used language that is more accessible than is typical in a national poll, asking, "Is it okay with you or not okay for political candidates in the U.S. to ask for assistance from a foreign government to help them win an election?"1
Just 7% of U.S. adults said it's okay. Eighty-one percent said it is not okay.2
Polling this lopsided is simply unheard of today. These findings are devastating for Donald Trump. And a HUGE opportunity for us.
That's why we're poised to hire organizers and film crews to stake out Capitol Hill in order to ask that simple question to GOP members of Congress, catch their responses on camera, and then run those videos as ads to make sure that their constituents see it.
Already, our staff have caught multiple Republican members of the House doing anything they can to avoid being confronted with the hard truth about Trump's abuse of power, including pretending to be on the phone, running through stairwells, and hiding in elevators. And we rapidly released these videos within hours. So far, GOP members can't and won't answer this question—which is why we need to keep confronting them and putting out the videos for voters to see.
We know that this is effective. Back in 2018, then-Senator Jeff Flake was ready to vote to confirm Brett Kavanaugh to the U.S. Supreme Court, until an activist confronted him on Capitol Hill and shared her personal story of sexual assault—all captured on video that quickly went viral. In response, Flake changed his mind, only moments before the vote.3
We can, and must, do that again now. And many times over.
During the Kavanaugh fight, we simply didn't do enough of this "bird dogging"—staking out senators' offices, committee hearing rooms, the Senate floor, and the routes in between to confront enough GOP senators and capture the moments for the world to see.
When we corner a member of Congress and capture their response on video, it can be game-changing, as it was for then-Senator Flake.
But it's also very time-consuming and takes teams of people working together to track down members of Congress, who are simultaneously doing everything they can to avoid the public.
If we can increase our presence on Capitol Hill and create a steady stream of these videos in the media and on the air, GOP members of Congress will face a stark reality: very visibly say it is okay for Trump to ask a foreign government for help to win the 2020 election, or say it is not okay.
This a clear, simple, straightforward message to send to elected officials, the media, and the public—and it will ensure that the ever-changing and convoluted talking points from Trump's administration and his loyalists in the right-wing media fall on deaf ears. But it's resource intensive to hire and train enough organizers to successfully track down GOP members of Congress, have film crews to capture it all on high-quality video, rapidly edit and produce the videos, and then make sure they are seen by voters back home.
Will you chip in $3 now to help us put organizers and video crews on the ground on Capitol Hill?
As the impeachment inquiry heads into the next phase, with public hearings and a vote in the House, we can expect that Trump will get more desperate and that his cronies in Congress will pull out all the stops to deflect, distract, and disrupt the proceedings.
We have to stay focused, and not let their chaotic actions rule the news cycle.
That's why MoveOn is hiring organizers in four key states to build local pressure on key senators. It's why we've launched a rapid-response network to activate hundreds of rallies the day before the House votes on impeachment. And it's why we now want to launch this massive bird dogging effort to force GOP members of Congress to answer the simple question at the heart of the Ukraine scandal and the impeachment inquiry.
Thanks for all you do.
–David, Rahna, Isbah, Scott, and the rest of the team
1. "The Daily 202: New poll shows why Trump's defenders are more focused on impeachment process than substance," The Washington Post, October 29, 2019
2. "Job Approval Dips, Unfavorable Feelings Climb for President Trump," Grinnell College, October 28, 2019
3. "Jeff Flake Is Confronted on Video by Sexual Assault Survivors," The New York Times, September 28, 2018
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