The gift that keeps on fighting

From the First Tuesday newsletter
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Last Friday night, though we were scattered around the state, our staff was busy refreshing web pages, updating Twitter feeds and following the U.S. Senate’s live video. In the wee hours of the morning, our hearts dropped as the nation’s political leaders voted in favor of a highly flawed tax plan.

Final tax graphic 300x750We’d held out hope through much of the day that reason and good sense would prevail over partisanship and spite. But in an all too familiar cloak-and-dagger move, through hastily written marginalia and hidden deals, the Senate Republicans chose to line the pockets of the wealthy at the expense of kids, families and seniors.

Saturday morning, as I planned our next steps to defeat this disastrous “tax” plan … and potentially deal with the aftermath of its passage, a friend asked me, “Don’t you just feel like giving up?”

I paused.

Certainly the question was a legitimate one. Over the past year America’s most vulnerable residents have suffered blow after blow. My friend truly wanted to know why I wanted to keep up the fight, how I could continue to wake up in the morning as lawmakers continue to push through legislation that takes from the poor and gives to the rich.

Yes. On Saturday morning I felt defeated, deflated and—quite literally—defrauded by the late-night antics on the Senate floor. But I poured myself a cup of coffee and tried to figure out a plan to keep going. That’s why I was able to look my friend in the eye and say, “No. I never feel like giving up.”

I will keep up our fight because I refuse to give in to this shortsighted manipulation of the democracy we hold dear. I refuse to allow these acts to knock us down, because the tide will change, and those of us in the world of policy must be prepared when it happens.

Friday night was painful. Any time someone in power lets down the people depending on them it’s painful. But this is not a fight we can quit.

Avg tax cut top 1 percentWe have work to do, and we hope you’re ready to join us. Whether you follow us on social media, donate to our cause, or share your stories with us, you’ll be making a difference in the lives of Michiganders. We cannot give up.

We must also remember that this tax bill is not yet set in stone. As the conference committee convenes, we have a chance to continue to make our voices heard. You can act today by contacting your U.S. Representative to express your concerns.

You, our allies, motivate us in so many ways and we’re grateful for each of you. Between our supporters and the abundant supply of chocolate in the office, I’m confident we’re going to have the strength to take on whatever 2018 brings.

— Gilda Z. Jacobs