Protect Freedom of Speech — We Need Your Help Now

As I informed you the other day free speech is under assault. Now you can respond to something specific:

Basic Message from: FreeCongress.org – (edited by Land Rights Network)
Grassroots Lobbying In Danger
You must call the Senators listed below immediately and insist that they vote against any section or amendment that hurts grassroots lobbying. Section 105 of S. 2128 is a bad section. There will likely be an amendment that also would threaten grassroots lobbying. No language should be added that has the intent of section 105.
Thursday, March 2nd the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs is expected to mark up S.2128, a lobbying reform measure introduced by Sen. John McCain. The time for the markup is 10 AM and it will be in Room 342 of the Dirksen Senate Office Building. Your calls and faxes will be good through 12:00 Noon Eastern Time Thursday.
Action Items:
—–1. Call your Senator to oppose S.2128. Any Senator may be called at (202) 224-3121.
—–2. Call any Senator listed below. Especially Senator John McCain.
—–2. Fax your Senator. When you call ask for the fax number.
—–3. Call at least three other people to get them to call and fax.
Time is urgent. You must take action immediately.
*****Everyone should contact Senator John McCain (R-AZ) is a key author of this bill: — (202) 224-2235 – FAX: (202) 224-2862. He is likely to be a candidate for President. He needs to know how much the grassroots does not like S. 2128.
Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs
Republicans:
Susan M. Collins (R-ME) (Chair) – (202) 224-2523 – FAX: (202) 224-2693
Ted Stevens (R-AK) – (202) 224-3004 – FAX: (202) 224-2354
George Voinovich (R-OH) – (202) 224-3353 – FAX: (202) 228-1382
Norm Coleman (R-MN) – (202_ 224-5641 – FAX: (202) 224-1152
Tom Coburn (R-OK) – (202) 224-5724 – FAX: (202) 224-6008
Lincoln Chafee (R-RI) — (202) 224-2921 – FAX (202) 228-2853
Robert Bennett (R-UT) — (202) 224-5444 – FAX: (202) 228-1168
Pete Domenici (R-NM) – (202) 224-6621 – FAX: (202) 228-3261
John Warner (R-VA) –(202) 224-2023 – FAX (202) 224-6295
Democrats:
Joseph Lieberman (D-CT) (Ranking) – (202) 224-4041 – FAX: (202) 224- 9750
Carl Levin (D-MI) – (202) 224-6221 – FAX: 202) 224-1388
Daniel Akaka (D-HI) – (202) 224-6361 – FAX: (202) 224-2126
Thomas Carper (D-DE) – (202) 224-2441 – FAX: (202) 228-2190
Mark Dayton (DFL-MN) – (202) 224-3244 – FAX: (202) 228-2186
Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ) — (202) 224-3224 – FAX: (202) 228-4054
Mark Pryor (D-AR) – (202) 224-2353 – FAX: (202) 228-0908
Background:
Many grassroots activist groups are concerned about Section 105 of S. 2128 which calls for the filing of detailed reports by vendors that have been hired by grassroots groups. Not only is the reporting burdensome but the reports are detailed enough to provide tip-offs on strategy and tactics.
Essentially the measure would provide an edge to well-heeled groups that can look at what the opposition is doing and react accordingly with expenditures. In other words, the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence would know what grassroots gun groups plan to do and can plan to respond accordingly. The same could hold true when it comes to grassroots property groups mounting protests against well-heeled townships and developers in post-Kelo cases.
It is uncertain whether Senator McCain has made a significant change to Section 105 or dropped it from his bill. Word has been circulating that an amendment to do the things expressed in Section 105 will be introduced in the committee on Thursday.
What is clear is that this section or an amendment that embodies the intent of Section 105 would have a detrimental impact on grassroots lobbying activities.
Bradley A. Smith, former Chairman of the Federal Election Commission, and Stephen M. Hoersting, Executive Director of the Center for Competitive Politics, wrote last month in National Review Online:
Far from being the problem, grassroots lobbying is part of the solution to restoring the people’s faith in Congress. …
“Grassroots lobbying” is merely encouragement of average citizens to contact their representatives about issues of public concern. It is not “lobbying” at all, as that phrase is normally used outside the beltway, meaning paid, full-time advocates of special interests meeting in person with members of Congress away from the public eye,
Contact between ordinary citizens and members of Congress, which is what “grassroots lobbying” seeks to bring about…is ordinary citizens expressing themselves. That they are “stimulated” to do so by “grassroots lobbying activities” is irrelevant. These are still individual citizens motivated to express themselves to members of Congress.
It’s important to preserve the ability of citizens to contact their Members of Congress without entangling those groups and their contractors in all kinds of red tape. Citizen activists get it. Does Senator McCain? Do the members of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs get it? This issue is of vital concern to grassroots activists.
Whether it is Section 105 or an amendment that is aimed at grassroots lobbying, it is important for grassroots activists to fight to preserve unfettered grassroots lobbying. K Street has their mercenaries but there is no reason for Congress to crack down on American citizens expressing their honest to goodness viewpoints to their elected representatives.

Give Senator Domenici a call. It will only take a minute.

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