The Slatest

Hey, a Bunch of People Called Their Representatives in Congress, and It Actually Worked!

Texas Republican Rep. Pete Sessions is picking up what you’re putting down, America.

Jonathan Ernst/Reuters

In December, a group of Democratic operatives released a widely read citizen’s guide to effectively persuading one’s congressional representatives to resist the creation of an American authoro-kleptocracy. It’s called the “Indivisible Guide” and is based on lessons learned during the Tea Party’s oft-successful campaigns against Obama administration initiatives. One of its four main admonitions is to “barrage your MoCs [members of Congress]” with phone calls “at an opportune moment and on a specific issue.”

Then, on Monday, news broke that Republicans in the House had decided to effectively eliminate a nonpartisan investigative body called the Office of Congressional Ethics. On Tuesday, news broke that said Republicans had changed their minds about said elimination. And now the GOP reps involved in the decisions have attributed the reversal to—wouldn’t you know it—a barrage of phone calls.

American democracy: not always bad! Usually bad. But not always. (For more detailed instructions on how to make effective calls—e.g. trying to locate the specific staffer who’s responsible for an issue rather than just leaving a message with whichever intern answers the phone—you can read the “Indivisible Guide” here.)