I’ve been writing about the Sunrise Movement’s plans for 2019, summarized above, up to June when presidential candidate bird-dogging will become one focus. Bird-dogging is an election campaign strategy to get candidates to talk about the issues you care about. The American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) has used this in the past, and has online information about bird-dogging: https://www.afsc.org/birddogging I’ll be writing more about this after I’ve had a chance to meet with people who have experience with bird-dogging.
By July plans will be in place to have crowds of Sunrise supporters come to one of the first presidential debates. Which one has not been decided, yet. The following from the Sunrise Movement website explains this:
In 2016, there were ZERO questions on climate in the general election debates and it wasn’t much better in the primary. That’s unacceptable.
This summer, thousands of us will descend on one of the first Democratic Presidential debates to #ChangeTheDebate and make sure the #GreenNewDeal is a top issue in the 2020 election.
We don’t know exactly when or where it will be, but this will be our biggest opportunity to shape the 2020 Presidential Primary, and with it the fate of the Green New Deal.
If this is something you might want to be part of, SIGN UP TODAY so we can show our strength. Sign up here: https://www.sunrisemovement.org/changethedebate
Answers to questions we’re guessing you might have:
What are we demanding? Our demands are simple: all presidential contenders must back the #GreenNewDeal or face the contempt of young people everywhere, and the mainstream media must fully cover climate change or slide further into irrelevance.
When and where will it be? The Democratic Presidential Debate schedule isn’t released yet, but here’s what we know: there will be one debate in June, another in July,and then four more in the rest of 2019. None of the 2019 debates will be in the first four primary states: Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina, or Nevada. The action will be at one of these first debates.
How will you decide which one the action will be at? We’ll make the decision mostly based on the location, timing, and opportunities to bring major political figures onboard for the action.
What will the action look like? We can’t share too much now, but this won’t be your average rally outside a debate. We know that the tactics like civil disobedience and powerful stories that we used to put the Green New Deal on the map in DC this past fall are some of our best tools to #ChangeTheDebate again.
Why focus on the debates? The debates are our best shot to grab the attention of the media and the Presidential candidates and ensure the #GreenNewDeal is front and center in the conversation. They are when millions of people tune into the primary for the first time. This year, there will be two debates on back-to-back days so there will be opportunities for actions in between them when the news media are milling around waiting for the next debate.
What can I do now?This action is just one part of our strategy. When you sign up, you’ll receive an email with information about how to get started pushing for a Green New Deal where you live.