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Since Thursday, Progressives Have Raised Millions to Defeat the Republicans Who Voted for the #AHCA

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Politicians who argue against universal healthcare often talk about the need for “consumer choice,” or “fiscal and personal responsibility.” Welp, people across the United States are exercising both of those muscles this week, by donating crap-tons of money to the opponents of any Republican who voted for the AHCA.

A variety of sites reported massive spikes in donations after Republicans in the House voted to pass Trumpcare, an abomination of a bill whose cruelty should follow and shame its proponents for the rest of their lives. While the bill can hopefully be stopped in the Senate, which already shows signs of drafting its own version rather than trying to repair this monstrosity, I don’t trust any of these nightmare people to serve the public without incentive.

Luckily, you’re all keeping them scared, with donations in the millions across Swing Left, Daily Kos, MoveOn.org, and ActBlue.

Swing Left posted that they’ve raised more than $1 million for 35 Swing District Funds, meant to unseat the 35 Republicans in swing districts who voted in favor of the AHCA. The money, according to Swing Left, “will be handed over to the the eventual Democratic nominees running against these Republicans.”

Daily Kos also tweeted that they’ve raised $1.3 million since Thursday afternoon, via an ActBlue page which is raising money to unseat “24 Republicans from districts where Trump won less than 50 percent of the vote in 2016 [who] voted for this bill.” The page also points out: “Democrats need 24 seats to take back the House.”

According to a statement from Daily Kos Political Director David Nir, “Americans are horrified that congressional Republicans just voted to take away their health care, and that’s kindled real anger—anger that the Daily Kos community is channeling with record-breaking donations at unheard-of speed.”

Nir continued, “Daily Kos targeted 24 vulnerable House Republicans who voted for this heinous legislation and who sit in districts where Trump won less than 50 percent of the vote. Less than a day after launching our campaign, the Daily Kos community has given $800,000 via 17,200 contributions to help punish these Republicans at the ballot box in 2018, and donations keep pouring in.”

That was on Friday. By Saturday, they hit $1.3 million.

ActBlue also reported a total of $4.2 million in donations sitewide, as some people chose to donate to other specific causes, candidates, or even a fund for the opponents of all 217 Republicans – whether their district is vulnerable or not – who voted to kill millions of their fellow Americans.

In an interview with Vox, MoveOn.Org was also reporting record donations. They didn’t provide any totals, but Ben Wikler, Washington director of MoveOn, did indicate that “a normal fundraising SMS alert for the progressive group results in $4,000 donations in total; the one it sent over the AHCA has raised $17,000 per hour since the vote.”

I know this can feel like small consolation in the face of the devastation that this bill could wreak on the United States. It’s little comfort to know that some rich asshole, whose healthcare is already guaranteed by the taxpayer, might lose an election, when thousands will die as a consequences of their actions. Losing an election doesn’t seem like fair punishment for murder.

But this horror-show isn’t law yet, and blowback is crucial for pressuring the Senate to behave ethically, in the interests of all Americans. You just know they’re waiting to see if they can get away with passing something as vicious as the AHCA; if they think we’ll react quietly, they’ll do it. And while we’ll still need protests, calls to Congress, and tough town hall questions, these donations are also an important part of what blowback looks like.

Keep after them, everyone. The arc of the moral universe bends toward justice, as Martin Luther King, Jr. said – but pressure makes things bend a lot faster.

(Via Vox and Business Insider; image via)

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