Buy Pat Toomey's Vote
Incidentally, despite all evidence to the contrary, Senator Toomey thinks that Betsy DeVos would be a great choice to lead the Department of Education.
Betsy DeVos has never set foot in a classroom, did not send her children to public school, cannot distinguish between proficiency and growth, and thinks that guns should be allowed in schools in the event of grizzly attacks. That fictitious grizzly is about as qualified as Ms. DeVos to run the Department of Education.
If Betsy DeVos can buy Senator Toomey's vote, we should be allowed to do the same.
If, of course, Senator Toomey does not wish to accept any funds raised*, all money will be donated to Camp Sojourner, the Pennsylvania Arts Education Network, and the Children's Literacy Initiative.
*or if this tongue-in-cheek fundraising page somehow constitutes a bribe, despite being eerily identical to the actions of Ms. DeVos.
** I've gotten enough emails about this that I suppose I have to spell this out: I am obviously not going to bribe an elected official, as that is illegal and immoral. This page is satire and all funds will go to the three PA educational charities listed above.
$20,000 to Camp Sojourner
$20,000 to Pennsylvania Arts Education Network
$20,000 to Children's Literacy Initiative
$11,196 to the Fund for the School District of Philadelphia's Library Campaign
I would be lying through my teeth if I said I wasn't heartbroken and angry right now at the results of the vote. The kind of heartbroken and angry that you feel when someone passes away after a long illness: you knew it was coming, and yet the loss, even one that you've been prepared for, is still a heavy anchor in your gut.
I'm trying to focus on the good that we have achieved.
I'm trying to focus on the phone calls that we make next: When will Toomey refund the DeVos family money, and when will he release the data on the people who have called his office on this issue?
I'm trying to focus on what our efforts have achieved.
And I'm trying to stay sane, like all 4,200+ of you.
Read a book. Make some art. Play with your kids. Take care of yourself.
And then come back fighting. I know I will.
In a few minutes, the Senate will vote on Betsy DeVos' confirmation.
I will shut the fundraiser down as soon as the votes are in. (Well, as soon as I can. I'm actually headed right now to a protest outside Pat Toomey's Philadelphia office. So if I'm running a few minutes late, that's why).
I cannot begin to express the immense gratitude I have for each one of you right now.
Thanks to the kindness of a DC-based stranger, each of your comments was printed and hand-delivered to the Senator's DC office, along with a letter that I wrote, urging him to do the right thing, and release the data of the volume of calls, emails, etc that have urged him to vote NO or recuse his vote. If you would like to read it, the full text of that letter is available at https://www.facebook.com/katherineafritz/posts/10100277353438441.
I had the immense honor of contacting the charities that will be the recipients of your donations, including a fourth -- the Fund for the School District of Philadelphia -- that I added once I realized our little internet stunt would go substantially over the goal. Because of YOU, Camp Sojourner will fund summer camp for girls. Because of YOU, the Children's Literacy Initiative will provide additional classroom support to teachers and struggling students. Because of YOU, we can fight for better policies in our state and federal government that preserve and increase access to arts education. Because of YOU, there will be more libraries in the classrooms of Philadelphia Public Schools.
Because of you.
We have made an extraordinary difference to many children, and we have put immense public pressure on Senator Toomey to do the right thing. In these troubling times, I am reminded of the goodness in people, and our strength in numbers. Keep the pressure on Senator Toomey, and all our representatives in Washington who owe us a more transparent government and a more inclusive leadership. But also... do not doubt the sheer magnitude of what we can accomplish when we work together. If indeed we are snowflakes, this little internet campaign has been a blizzard of hope, and I am grateful for all of it.
With much love,
I think we might actually make the goal.
With that in mind .... more recent data suggests that the number DeVos has contributed to Toomey is closer to $60K than $55. I am going to up the goal to $60,050... think we can make it?
Sending an unbelievable amount of love to all of you,
Doing the math- $5 out of my (~teacher's) salary is the equivalent of 50¢ to Betsy DeVos. Or in other words... I dontated 10x the amount she donated to Toomey when adjusted to pocketbook impact. She threw two quarters at you. She gave you 14 minutes on a dryer at a laundromat. I bought you a LATTE. Shouldn't that mean something Mr. Toomey?
To quote Ms. DeVos herself, "I have decided to stop taking offense at the suggestion that we are buying influence. Now I simply concede the point. They are right. We do expect something in return... We expect a return on our investment." I'd like to think our expectations as constituents mattered half as much.
It's not illegal to be a campaign contributer or to give to the man's pac's or use the offer of a donation for access to him. I actually think you could give him money and make it clear you're very much doing it to influence his vote. So use the money for access.
It is certainly legal to donate funds to the senator to "influence his vote" Donation information can be found here - http://www.fec.gov/ans/answers_general.shtml and information about creating a PAC/SuperPAC can be found here....http://www.fec.gov/ans/answers_pac.shtml.
Kate, people seem to miss the paragraph in the original post about the plan to donate the funds to Camp Sojourner, the Pennsylvania Arts Education Network, and the Children's Literacy Initiative*. Perhaps you might highlight that again. (*Because we're assuming that Toomey won't take the funds.)
The is awesome! I propose that you really collect this money and donate it to teachers in the Philadelphia area that have to use their own money to purchase supplies for their classrooms. If you do that I will increase my donation to $100-and I'm unemployed right now!
“I know a little something about soft money, as my family is the largest single contributor of soft money to the national Republican Party,” DeVos wrote in a 1997 Roll Call guest column. “I have decided, however, to stop taking offense at the suggestion that we are buying influence. Now I simply concede the point," DeVos wrote. DeVos already admits she's buying influence - you can do the same without ethical conflict.