Tomorrow is a big day for the Bill. As you may or may not be aware from posts of the past, the Bill has 61 co-sponsors in the Senate, the most any sub-Saharan Africa-related bill has received in modern U.S. history. Such good news that the original sponsors decided to hotline the bill, meaning it would pass with unanimous consent unless somebody actually took the time to put a hold on it to keep it from passing.
Tomorrow, is The OK Says YES Day of Action in Oklahoma City. The Invisible Children roadies, with two Ugandans, are already there. Lisa and Kenneth, director of communications and legislative fellow, respectively, of Resolve Uganda are already there. Activists, from Oklahoma and from elsewhere, are converging on the Capitol. Their mission? Get Senator Coburn to remove the hold.
Coburn has a strict set of principles that all bills must fit before he allows them to pass. His issue with the LRA/N. Uganda Bill is that the costs ($40M over 3 years) are not offset. Problem is, this bill doesn’t add to the deficit at all. If passed, it will approve the funds, which the Appropriations Committee would later direct – that is from where an offset can and probably will come. To add such an offset before would probably lose quite a few votes from whoever doesn’t like where the money comes from. To get passed Coburn’s hold would require a full floor vote, a time-consuming process that would be drowned by the health care overhaul. So this is where we stand.
Activists and constituents are converging on OKC tomorrow. And they aren’t leaving until the hold is removed. The Resolve Uganda crew and those who have the ability and the will are going to camp out at Coburn’s district office until the hold is removed.
If you want to hear from the Senator directly how he supports the cause but not the bill, you can check out this town hall meeting: