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Progressive Groups Call on Senate Democrats to Stand Strong, Fund Government While Addressing Urgent Priorities

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For a recording of the call, click here

As the Trump shutdown continues – and after a powerful weekend in which hundreds of thousands of people turned out across the country and around the world to oppose Trumpism – advocates urged members of Congress to stop kicking the can down the road and to stand strong for America’s children and American values. For a recording of the call, click here.

Mary Kay Henry, International President, Service Employees International Union, said:

Republican leadership has a clear choice: keep disrespecting the overwhelming majority of Americans who want dignity for Dreamers, kids who need to see a doctor and Puerto Ricans still recovering from natural disasters, or respect the priorities and values of working people. Working families deserve better than a Congress and president that keep kicking the can down the road and can only lurch from self-imposed crisis to self-imposed crisis.

Neera Tanden, CEO, Center for American Progress Action Fund, said:

Now is the moment to solve some of the most pressing problems facing the country, problems President Trump and Republicans have repeatedly said they want to address, like permanently funding health insurance for 9 million kids, protecting Dreamers from deportation, providing disaster relief to states like Texas; and combating the opioid crisis. Republican leaders must come to the table and negotiate in good faith for the good of children, young people and the future of our country.

Vanita Gupta, President/Chief Executive Officer, Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, said:

Bipartisan agreements with majority support are ready for approval in Congress. The Trump shutdown must end, and it must end now – with a bipartisan agreement to protect those most vulnerable in our country.

Greisa Martinez Rosas, DACA-recipient/Advocacy Director, United We Dream, said:

Today, members of Congress must stand strong and prove to the world that enough is enough. In the news there are reports that Republican leaders are pushing a plan to end their shutdown with a promise to bring up the Dream Act at some later date. To anyone considering such a move let me say this: Promises won’t protect anyone from deportation because delay means deportations for us. We need Congress to deliver a breakthrough on the Dream Act to protect immigrant youth now.

Becky Pringle, Vice President, National Education Association and PA teacher, said:

By failing to seize the opportunity to protect Dreamers now, you’re leaving behind a trail of unmeasurable uncertainty and anxiety among students, educators, and families. Not taking action now is irresponsible, unjust, and puts the lives of young people at risk.

Lorella Praeli, Director of Immigration Policy and Campaigns, ACLU, said:

Enough is enough. We cannot rely on false promises from those who have already proven to not be serious about resolving Dreamers’ crisis. In the face of these hostile actions and false reassurances, Democrats and Republicans who claim to stand with Dreamers can either choose to believe this administration and their enablers or stand up for Dreamers and our values at this critical moment in our history.

Ben Wikler, Washington Director, MoveOn.org, said:

This fight has united the progressive movement and the American public, and it’s fracturing Republicans. The public wants CHIP. The public wants to protect Dreamers. The public wants community health centers, disaster relief, and an end to chaos governance. The irony is that the path out of this mess is one where everybody wins. Donald Trump, Republicans in Congress—listen to your constituents. Listen to your colleagues. Listen to your conscience. End this shutdown by doing the right thing.

Angel Padilla, Policy Director, Indivisible, said:

Democrats must stand strong today. For months, Democratic leadership has reassured Dreamers that Democrats would use all their leverage to get the Dream Act done. Indivisible groups will be paying attention and will remember who follows through on their commitments to Dreamers today.

JoDee Winterhof, Senior Vice President for Policy and Political Affairs, Human Rights Campaign, said:

This is the biggest crisis of the Trump-Pence Administration, but Donald Trump is AWOL and Mike Pence is out of the country. Millions of people are being impacted by this administration’s failure to lead, from vulnerable kids to seniors to American troops to hundreds of thousands of Dreamers –  including 75,000 LGBTQ Dreamers facing unique dangers and risks. Americans need action, and we need it now.

Dana E. Singiser, Vice President, Public Policy and Government Affairs, Planned Parenthood Action Fund, said:

The women’s marches this weekend spoke loud and clear.  People stand with women, Dreamers and children and want Congress to pass real solutions. Planned Parenthood Action Fund calls on Congress to act now and pass a bill that includes protection of DACA recipients and reauthorization of CHIP.  And we call on President Trump to just say yes to this bipartisan solution. No more delay. They must act now.

Frank Sharry, Executive Director, America’s Voice, said:

You don’t win by retreating. Last week, we were thrilled when Democrats stood up for progressive values and confronted a dangerous President and the Republicans that enable him. We will be angry and disappointed if Democrats back down, fly the white flag, and come away with more delay and an empty promise of future action.