Call Of The Day: Demand Aid For Puerto Rico And The U.S. Virgin Islands

Take a bow, Indivisibles!

You did it again.  YOU helped defeat Graham-Cassidy.  Thanks to everyone who, over the past few months, called, wrote postcards and emails, sent letters to the editor, and attended rallies. It was only through your tireless dedication to holding our representatives accountable that we managed to help defeat horrible bills like the BCRA, "Skinny Repeal", and now, Graham-Cassidy.  Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU!

But there's always another fight to be fought.  Today, right now, this minute, the people of Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands need our help.  The situation in these hurricane-ravaged islands is getting worse each day, and we must urge our representatives to turn their attention to this humanitarian crisis.

We must continue pressing our Senators to press the administration to waive the Jones Act for one year, at least.  The Jones Act is a provision that requires all fuel/supplies/etc headed by boat to Puerto Rico to dock in the mainland US first.

The Trump Administration has denied a request from several members of Congress to waive the Jones Act for Puerto Rico, even though it was waived for Hurricanes Harvey and Irma.  This is bad, very, very bad, because Puerto Rico serves as a port-of-call for supplies to all the other islands in the Caribbean.  So if supplies are slow to get to Puerto Rico, then they'll take even longer to get to the U.S. Virgin Islands,  as well as Antigua, Barbuda, and any of the other island nations devastated by hurricanes.

WHO TO CALL:

Senators Cassidy and Kennedy

Senator Bill Cassidy - DC OFFICE: (202) 224-5824 and METAIRIE OFFICE: (504) 838-0130 (NOTE: If you can't get through to Metairie, try one of the other offices, such as Monroe: (318) 324-2111, Baton Rouge: (225) 929-7711; Lafayette: (337) 261-1400; Shreveport: (318) 798-3215; Lake Charles: (337) 493-5398, or Alexandria: Phone: (318) 448-7176)

Senator John Kennedy - DC OFFICE: (202) 224-4623 and NEW ORLEANS OFFICE (504) 581-6190 (Other offices include: Lafayette: (337) 269-5980; Monroe: (318) 361-1489; Alexandria: (318) 445-2892; Baton Rouge: (225) 926-8033; and Shreveport: (318) 670-5192)

Reminders:  Identify where you're calling from (town and zip code is fine) so they know you're an actual constituent.  Be concise - the office will get through more calls that way.  Be polite and don't argue with the staffer - they don't set policy. If you get a voicemail, then leave a message.  And if you get a busy signal -- call back later!

Sample Script:

Hi, my name is [Your Name] from New Orleans, zip code 70118 [or wherever you're from].

I'm calling today because I want Congress to prioritize hurricane relief for Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.  American citizens there are suffering through truly dire circumstances, and we can't abandon them in their time of need.  I also support a 1-year waiver for the Jones Act, and would like the Senator to continue pressing the Trump Administration to lift this provision, so that Puerto Ricans and the U.S. Virgin Islands can get the supplies they need as quickly as possible.

Thank you for your time and your hard work answering the phones.  Stay safe out there. 

This call is courtesy of Metairie Indivisible.