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Making Primary and Supporting Asks Training

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Description

This training reviews the updates and context for CCL's 2020 Primary and Supporting Asks as well as guidance for lobby teams as they plan their online meetings. 

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/topics/working-with-congress
TOC and Guide Section
 
2020 Primary Ask

CCL’s primary ask of members of both chambers of Congress is: to support the bipartisan Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act (H.R.763).

Send this handout with your Member of Congress or staffer ahead of your lobby meeting. It is also recommended that you use this ask to frame your conversation with them. To download this PDF resource click on the button below. 

The primary ask should be made in every meeting, unless your member is already a cosponsor of the Energy Innovation Act. If your member is already a cosponsor, then focus on thanking them, finding out what support they could use in the district for this action, and perhaps how they could help recruit other sponsors or support the bill publicly. CCL’s How To Work With Existing Cosponsors training provides more recommendations.

If your member of Congress agrees to cosponsor the Energy Innovation Act during your lobby meeting, they will know what to do to take that step (i.e. contact Rep. Deutch's office). If they agree to cosponsor or express significant interest, please inform our CCL legislative staff by emailing danny@citizensclimate.org.

Using Supporting Asks

You should always be clear that what you want is our primary ask. However, many members of Congress may not be ready to support the Energy Innovation Act (or are already cosponsors). Previous meetings with the office will give you a good idea of what answer you will get to this main ask, especially since this is now our third lobby day with the bill before the Congress. Getting legislation passed is a complicated, coalition-building process in which lots of smaller steps must happen before we get a law, especially for a major bill like the Energy Innovation Act. Many members of Congress may be willing to support other bills that fit into the broader picture of addressing the climate crisis and are complementary to the Energy Innovation Act, and these could be stepping stones to support for our bill. 

Bills supporting bipartisan climate action

This June CCL identified four bipartisan bills in Congress that were used as supporting asks. For December, we're asking lobby meetings to not focus on these bills as a main part of their meeting as we need to remain focused. Just as the format of the primary ask is a bit different this lobby day in response to the context we’re operating in, the context for making a supporting ask is different. Supporting asks made sense in June, however the situation for the end of 2020 is that if a carbon price is coming, the form it comes in will be particularly sensitive to what happens over the next 3-4 months. 

If your team feels it must include a supporting ask for your meetings, the only one that can still add co-sponsors in both chambers is Growing Climate Solutions Act. Of the other supporting asks CCL discussed in June, three passed as part of a package, but were not part of the corresponding package in the other chamber, or the package was never taken up. As a result, these bills not long can add co-sponsors and because of chaos of the lame duck period, and the urgency of getting a carbon fee or tax into any emerging larger climate package, CCL's legislative team recommends not focusing on them and if they do come up in your meetings, assure your office that they will again be of interest in the coming Congress.

These asks are not exhaustive and, if there is a bill your group would like to use as a supporting ask that is not on this list, please contact CCL’s Sr. Director of Government Affairs, Ben Pendergrass, at ben@citizensclimate.org. You should use your best judgment when deciding whether you want to make one or more of these bills a supporting ask. If any of them are a source of conflict within your group, please pick a different supporting ask.

Other Supporting Asks

If you have been working on other supporting asks, such as holding a bipartisan briefing on local climate impacts, holding a virtual public forum in the district, or are continuing a conversation about the Climate Solutions Caucus in the House or the Senate, it is fine to continue with those. Note, CCL is asking you not to ask your Senators to join the Senate Climate Solutions Caucus at this time as the current members prefer to keep this as a small caucus. It is great to let your Senator know that it exists and that you are excited about Senators working together to make climate a bridge issue. The Senate Climate Solutions Caucus (more info) was formed in 2019 by Senator Michael Braun (R-IN) and Senator Chris Coons (D-DE). If your continued conversation on the House Climate Solutions Caucus leads to interest in joining, interested offices should speak with Josh Lipman (Josh.Lipman@mail.house.gov) in the office of co-chair Ted Deutch. 

Working With Existing Cosponsors of H.R.763

If your member is already a cosponsor, then focus on thanking them, finding out what support they could use in the district for this action, and perhaps how they could help recruit other sponsors or support the bill publicly. The How To Work With Existing Cosponsors training page provides more recommendations.

Length
Press play to start the video (21m 13s)
https://vimeo.com/showcase/7193861
Video Outline
To skip ahead to a specific section go to the time indicated in parenthesis.

Intro & Agenda
(from beginning)

Review From Last Week
(2:18)

Primary Ask & Support Is Building Handout
(4:32)

Supporting Asks
(12:47)

June Meeting Analysis
(16:35)


Additional Q&A Discussion 
(separate video here)
Instructor(s)
  • Dr. Danny Richter
Downloads

Download PowerPoint or Google Slides presentation.

Download the video.
Audio length
Press play to start the audio (21m 13s)
Audio embed code
Audio Outline
To skip ahead to a specific section go to the time indicated in parenthesis.

Intro & Agenda
(from beginning)

Review From Last Week
(2:18)

Primary Ask & Support Is Building Handout
(4:32)

Supporting Asks
(12:47)

June Meeting Analysis
(16:35)

Extended Q&A With Danny
(separate video here)
Instructor(s)
  • Dr. Danny Richter
To Print
Instructions for printing this page on Community.
Category
Training
Topics
Lobbying Congress
Format
Audio / Video, Presentation
File Type
Google Slides, PowerPoint (.pptx)
Training Resources

To prepare yourself, research the full suite of resources for planning a meeting with a member of Congress.