Alysia, Zach and I are camped out at the State House this week in good company with our contract lobbyist, Kim, and our contract organizer, Heather.  Bills attacking a voting rights, reproductive freedom, and the Maine Human Rights Act have been scheduled for a vote for days now.  The latest word is that the House will run LD 199 and LD 1376, two bills that would make it harder for Mainers to vote, on Monday.  The Senate may run LD 1463, a bill to establish separate legal status for a fetus, on Monday as well.  Then, on Tuesday, we anticipate that the House will run the votes on four anti-choice bills as well as the transgender discrimination bill.

So what can you do to help?

1.  Contact your legislator.  You can look up contact information for your legislator here.  I can't fully express how much it matters.  I had a legislator tell me this week, "Shenna, I agree with you in principle, but I don't think my party does."  I can't convince him that he's wrong, but you, the constituents, can. 
2.  That said, don't make assumptions about where someone is.  I know a liberal Democrat from Portland who may well vote in favor of discrimination against transgender Mainers without some constituent support.  And I know a conservative Republican from rural Kennebec County who will definitely vote against transgender discrimination because of constituent support.  On the separation of church and state victories the ACLU of MAINE had earlier this week, Senator Roger Katz (R-Augusta) was one of our biggest champions, and both bills, which would have allowed government funding of religion, were defeated.
3.  Don't let the legislator give you false information.  One legislator claimed this week that LD 1376 doesn't eliminate same day voter registration.  It's always surprising to me when people in power make false claims, either by accident or maliciously.  Double check any politician's facts.  Often, all it takes is a quick google search.
4.  Write a letter to the editor! 
5.  Post this blog on Facebook or Twitter.  Or better yet, join the ACLU of MAINE Facebook and Twitter pages and repost good content you find there. 

You make a difference!  This week we did the impossible and defeated all of the bills that would have allowed taxpayer funding for religion.  We've defeated the Arizona profiling bill and private prisons.  Together, we can defeat anti-contraception, anti-abortion, and anti-voting bills, but only with your help.