Key Takeaways from November 17 organizing call

By: Harry Waisbren

Out latest call has illustrated that we are successfully building momentum. We have been making major progress on our open letter to Obama in particular, and are soliciting preferred times for our final call this Thursday before we launch this letter to president.

Please let us know when you can make it.

In the meantime, you can read through the call transcript or check below for other key takeaways:

Legislative situation

  • There have not been any alerts regarding the scheduling of the Reyes amendment in the House Intelligence Committee, which is reason to believe it will once again come down to the wire.
  • The Patriot Act’s sunset is December 31, and a bill must pass the house, senate, through conference, and back before it can be made into law.
  • Strategically, this means we are confronted, once again, with a looming deadline.

Open Letter

  • We highly encourage anyone/everyone to provide their input ASAP, as the time before Thursday’s call is the last opportunity to do so (for this letter at least). Thanks to Mark for jump starting conversation.
  • The launch is scheduled to commence Monday. Afterwards, we will need everyone’s help to spread the letter as thoroughly as we are able. Special thanks to Jessica of Care2 for offering to coordinate efforts and to Amy who has volunteered to take the lead in organizing a press conference!
  • Tuesday we are holding a launch event in the form of a tweetchat regarding the nature of our current surveillance laws, including a variety of expert participants from across the ideological spectrum. Jim Burrows has started this conversation on the techie side of getting it right, and we will be providing an update on this soon as well.


  • As Chip Pitts of the Bill of Rights Defense Committee emphasized on the call, the burgeoning coalition we are developing constitutes many of the independent voters that Obama had previously wooed, yet who have become disenfranchised due to his civil liberties track record in office. Special thanks to Chip as well for offering to host the letter and facilitating signatures through the BORDC!
  • Our message is positive, as we want Obama to get this right, and we intend to show him the way back to the views expressed by the Obama from the campaign trail on this integral issue.
  • Considering our president’s overt focus on bipartisanship, and his recognition of the political rewards to be reaped from maintaining the support from independents, we hope he will be inclined to listen to the collective voices of those of us attempting to transcend partisanship and ensure that democratic and republican politicians alike may not abuse the constitution or subvert the rule of law.

Thanks to Chip, Jim, Jessica, Jon, Mark, Amy, Korkie, and Soren for joining. We’ve made some major ground but are just getting our largest initiatives revved up. Much more to come!


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