Author Archives: Lisa

Starting to blog again…

Tap. Tap. Tap. I’m trying to blog daily again.

It used to be so easy, and then somehow it became to time consuming.

Also, my life’s work is very complicated, and often I can’t discuss projects publicly until they are over. However, by that time, I’m off to the next project, so I never get around to telling the tale.

So, by this time, I have many many stories to choose from, and I’m just not sure where to begin.

Murder He Calculated – Reference for Ethical Algorithms Panel At Aaron Swartz Day

As originally published at


A tenacious data miner has built a tool that can help find serial killers and bring down murder rates—if police are willing to use it

By Robert Kolker

Sunday, February 12th 2017


A tenacious data miner has built a tool that can help find serial killers and bring down murder rates—if police are willing to use it

N Aug. 18,2010, a police lieutenant in Gary, Ind., received an e-mail, the subject line of which would be right at home in the first few scenes of a David Fincher movie:

“Could there be a serial killer active in the Gary area?” It isn’t clear what the lieutenant did with that e-mail; it would be understandable if he waved it off as a prank. But the author could not have been more serious. He’d attached source ­material—spreadsheets created from FBI files showing that over several years the city of Gary had recorded 14 unsolved murders of women between the ages of 20 and 50. The cause of each death was the same: strangulation. Compared with statistics from around the country, he wrote, the number of similar killings in Gary was far greater than the norm. So many people dying the same way in the same city—wouldn’t that suggest that at least a few of them, maybe more, might be connected? And that the killer might still be at large?

The police lieutenant never replied. Twelve days later, the police chief, Gary Carter, received a similar e-mail from the same person. This message added a few details. Several of the women were strangled in their homes. In at least two cases, a fire was set after the murder. In more recent cases, several women were found strangled in or around abandoned buildings. Wasn’t all of this, the writer asked, at least worth a look?

The Gary police never responded to that e-mail, either, or to two follow-up letters sent via registered mail. No one from the department has commented publicly about what was sent to them—nor would anyone comment for this story. “It was the most frustrating experience of my professional life,” says the author of those messages, a 61-year-old retired news reporter from Virginia named Thomas Hargrove.

Hargrove spent his career as a data guy. He analyzed his first set of polling data as a journalism major at the University of Missouri, where he became a student director of the ­university’s polling organization. He joined an E.W. Scripps newspaper right out of college and expanded his repertoire from political polling data to practically any subject that required statistical analysis. “In the newsroom,” he remembers, “they would say, ‘Give that to Hargrove. That’s a numbers problem.’”

In 2004, Hargrove’s editors asked him to look into statistics surrounding prostitution. The only way to study that was to get a copy of the nation’s most comprehensive repository of criminal statistics: the FBI’s Uniform Crime Report, or UCR. When Hargrove called up a copy of the report from the database library at the University of Missouri, attached to it was something he didn’t expect: the Supplementary Homicide Report. “I opened it up, and it was a record I’d never seen before,” he says. “Line by line, every murder that was reported to the FBI.”

Hargrove at home, which is also the home office of the Murder Accountability Project

This report, covering the year 2002, contained about 16,000 murders, broken down by the victims’ age, race, and sex, as well as the method of killing, the police department that made the report, the circumstances known about the case, and information about the offender, if the offender was known. “I don’t know where these thoughts come from,” Hargrove says, “but the second I saw that thing, I asked myself, ‘Do you suppose it’s possible to teach a computer how to spot serial killers?’”

Like a lot of people, Hargrove was aware of criticisms of police being afflicted by tunnel vision when investigating difficult cases. He’d heard the term “linkage blindness,” used to describe the tendency of law-enforcement jurisdictions to fail to connect the dots between similar cases occurring right across the county or state line from one another. Somewhere in this report, Hargrove thought, could be the antidote to linkage blindness. The right person, looking at the information in the right way, might be able to identify any number of at-large serial killers.

Every year he downloaded and crunched the most recent data set. What really shocked him was the number of murder cases that had never been cleared. (In law enforcement, a case is cleared when a suspect is arrested, whatever the eventual outcome.) Hargrove counted 211,487, more than a third of the homicides recorded from 1980 to 2010. Why, he wondered, wasn’t the public up in arms about such a large number of unsolved murders?

To make matters worse, Hargrove saw that despite a generation’s worth of innovation in the science of crime fighting, including DNA analysis, the rate of cleared cases wasn’t increasing but decreasing— plummeting, even. The average homicide clearance rate in the 1960s was close to 90 percent; by 2010 it was solidly in the mid-’60s. It has fallen further since.

These troubling trends were what moved Hargrove to write to the Gary police. He failed to get any traction there. Sure enough, four years later, in October 2014, in Hammond, Ind.—the town next door to Gary—police found the body of 19-year-old Afrikka Hardy in a room at a Motel 6. Using her phone records, they tracked down a suspect, 43-year-old Darren Deon Vann. Once arrested, Vann took police to the abandoned buildings where he’d stowed six more bodies, all of them in and around Gary. Anith Jones had last been seen alive on Oct. 8; Tracy Martin went missing in June; Kristine Williams and Sonya Billingsley disappeared in February; and Teaira Batey and Tanya Gatlin had vanished in January.

Before invoking his right to remain silent, Vann offhandedly mentioned that he’d been killing people for years—since the 1990s. Hargrove went to Gary, reporting for Scripps, to investigate whether any of the cases he’d identified back in 2010 might possibly be attributed to Vann. He remembers getting just one helpful response, from an assistant coroner in Lake County who promised to follow up, but that too went nowhere. Now, as the Vann prosecution slogs its way through the courts, everyone involved in the case is under a gag order, prevented from speculating publicly about whether any of the victims Hargrove noted in 2010 might also have been killed by Vann. “There are at least seven women who died after I tried to convince the Gary police that they had a serial killer,” Hargrove says. “He was a pretty bad one.”

Hargrove has his eye on other possible killers, too. “I think there are a great many uncaught serial killers out there,” he declares. “I think most cities have at least a few.”

We’re in a moment when, after decades of decreases nationally in the overall crime rate, the murder rate has begun creeping upward in many major U.S. cities. For two years running, homicides in major cities jumped on average more than 10 percent. (Those increases aren’t uniform, of course: Chicago leapt from 485 reported killings in 2015 to 762 in 2016, while the number of murders dipped in New York and Baltimore.) President Trump, in the campaign and since, has vowed to usher in a new era of law and order, hammering away on Twitter at Chicago’s “carnage” in particular.

Threats of federal intervention aside, it will be difficult to fix the problem of high murder rates without first addressing clearance rates. So it’s fortuitous, perhaps, that we are living in an age in which the analy­sis of data is supposed to help us decipher, detect, and predict everything from the results of presidential elections to the performance of baseball players. The data-focused approach to problem-solving was brought to life for a lot of people by Michael Lewis’s Moneyball, which introduced the non-baseball-nerd public to the statistical evaluation of Major Leaguers and made a hero of Billy Beane, an executive with the Oakland A’s. Law enforcement would seem to be a fertile area for data to be helpful: In the 1990s the New York Police Department famously used data to more shrewdly deploy its officers to where the crimes were, and its CompStat system became the standard for other departments around the country. What Hargrove has managed to do goes a few orders of magnitude beyond that. His innovation was to teach a computer to spot trends in unsolved murders, using publicly available information that no one, including anyone in law enforcement, had used before. This makes him, in a manner of speaking, the Billy Beane of murder. His work shines light on a question that’s gone unanswered for too long: Why, exactly, aren’t the police getting any better at solving murder? And how can we even dream of reversing any upticks in the homicide rate while so many killers remain out on the streets?

It took a few years for Hargrove’s editors at Scripps to agree to give him enough time to lose himself in the FBI’s homicide data. With help from a University of Missouri grad student, Hargrove first dumped the homicide report into statistics software in 2008. He spent months trying to develop an algorithm that would identify unsolved cases with enough commonalities to suggest the same murderer. Eventually, he decided to reverse-engineer the algorithm by testing his ideas against one well-known case, that of Gary Ridgway, the so-called Green River Killer, who confessed to killing 48 women over two decades in the Seattle area. Hargrove thought that if he could devise an algorithm that turned up the Green River Killer’s victims, he’d know he was on the right track.

“We found a hundred things that didn’t work,” he recalls. Finally, he settled on four characteristics for what’s called a cluster analysis: geography, sex, age group, and method of killing. For gender, he stuck with women, since they make up the vast majority of multiple-murder victims who aren’t connected to gang related activity. When he used women between the ages of 20 and 50—the cohort most commonly targeted by serial killers— the algorithm lit up like a slot machine. “It became clear that this thing was working,” he says. “In fact, it was working too well.”

The Green River Killer came up right away in this algorithm. That was good news. Hargrove’s algorithm also pulled up 77 unsolved murders in Los Angeles, which he learned were attributed to several different killers the police were pursuing (including the so-called Southside Slayer and, most recently, the Grim Sleeper), and 64 unsolved murders of women in Phoenix.

Then there was a second group of possible serial killers, those unrecognized by local police. “The whole point of the algorithm was to find the low-hanging fruit, the obvious clusters,” Hargrove says. “But there were dozens and dozens of them all over the country.” In 2015, Scripps spun off the last of its newspapers, and Hargrove and the other print reporters lost their jobs. “The only guy who left with a skip was me,” he says. Hargrove, who was 59 at the time and had worked at the company for 37 years, qualified for a large severance and a nice pension, leaving him well-­covered. Now he had enough time to go all in on his data project. He founded the Murder Accountability Project, or MAP, a tiny nonprofit seeking to make FBI murder data more widely and easily available.

Using Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests, MAP has tried to chase down data from the many municipalities and counties that weren’t supplying their murder data to the FBI, out of bureaucratic laziness, a lack of manpower, or perhaps just rank incompetence. MAP has already assembled case details on 638,454 homicides from 1980 through 2014, including 23,219 cases that hadn’t been reported to the FBI. This is the most complete list of case-level details of U.S. murders available anywhere, and the group’s website has open-sourced all of it. Anyone with statistical analysis software, available for free online, can start looking, across jurisdictions, for serial killers. Anyone can compare convicted killers’ timelines against the timing of unsolved murders to determine if a connection is plausible. “You can call up your hometown and look and see if you see anything suspicious,” Hargrove says. “If you’re the father of a murdered daughter, you can call up her record, and you can see if there might be other records that match. We wanted to be able to crowdsource murder.”

The police have never been great at leveraging the power of their own statistics. Police culture is notably paper-based, scattered, and siloed, and departments aren’t always receptive to technological innovation. The National Crime Information Center (NCIC) database gives police access to information such as fugitive warrants, stolen property, and missing persons, but it’s not searchable for unsolved killings. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Violent Death Reporting System compiles death-certificate-based information for homicide victims in 32 states, but, again, can’t be searched for uncleared cases. Some states have their own homicide databases, but they can’t see the data from other states, so linkage blindness persists.

In the 1990s the FBI created another voluntary reporting database, this one specifically for violent and sexual crimes, called the Violent Criminal Apprehension Program, or ViCAP. It never succeeded, either, primarily because it’s voluntary, making it easy for police departments to ignore. “Most law enforcement agencies don’t have a real solid understanding of what the purpose of ViCAP is,” says Gregory Cooper, who ran the program for three years. “The frustration is, I’ve got a car, but no one’s putting any gas in it.” Hargrove calls ViCAP “an experiment that was never properly funded, and most police departments never really bought into the idea.”

All of this contributes to, or at least fails to mitigate, the trend in the Uniform Crime Report and its Supplementary Homicide Report. Hargrove’s analysis of that data shows that the clearance rate, already so low compared with what it was decades ago, dropped from 64.5 percent in 2014 to 61.5 percent in 2015. That translates into 6,043 murder cases in 2015 that didn’t result in arrests. He picked apart those findings and learned that large cities tend to have worse clearance rates than small towns, perhaps because major cases are more rare in less populated areas and therefore tend to get special attention. (This might at least partially explain why about 75 percent of Canada’s 500 to 600 homicides each year are cleared.)

Hargrove also learned that not all big cities are the same when it comes to murder. “The variance is breathtaking,” he says. Los Angeles, New York, and Houston are well above the average clearance rates—in the low- to mid-70s. The bottom of the class includes New Orleans, Detroit, and St. Louis, all bumping along in the mid-40s.

Police in large cities with stubbornly high murder rates point the finger at gang- and drug-related killings, and the reluctance of witnesses to come forward to identify the murderers. “The biggest problem is that everyone knows everyone,” Chester, Pa., Police Commissioner Darren Alston told the Philadelphia Daily News in September. (Chester’s homicide rate outstrips all other U.S. cities’— and is more than double that of nearby Philadelphia.) City residents, in turn, point to a lack of trust in the police. But one other obvious problem is resources. “We fund homicide investigations like we fund education—it comes down to a local tax,” Hargrove says. “When an economy fails enough and we just have to start firing cops, we see everything going to hell.”

MAP tracks staffing trends on its website, too. Hargrove notes that Flint, Mich., and Dayton, Ohio, have seen their clearance rates fall more than 30 percentage points since the 1990s, coinciding with huge reductions in police manpower (330 to 185 officers in Flint; 500 to 394 in Dayton). When Hargrove’s group filed a FOIA request to get homicide data about a suspected serial killer in Detroit, the response was that the police lacked the budget to fulfill the request. “What do you do when a city says, ‘We’re too broke to even try to pull the records?’” Hargrove says. “I joke that what we’ve done is to create what amounts to a failed government detector.”

There is a case to be made, though, that clearance rates aren’t just a function of a police department’s staffing. Priorities and management also figure heavily. In 2000, Charles Wellford, a criminologist at the University of Maryland, published a seminal paper in which he identified the commonalities for departments that do effective murder clearance. No. 1 on that list was ensuring that cops are able to chase leads in the critical early hours after a murder, even if that means earning overtime pay. Wellford’s current research looks closely at the amount of money spent per officer, the amount spent per case, and the percentage of detectives on the force. Clearance rates, Wellford says, “are very much determined by priorities and resources. I’m beyond thinking that’s an open question. The question now for me is: How can we use the resources departments have to improve what they’re doing in clearing serious crimes?”

The most discouraging thing Hargrove has learned since starting his organization is how many police departments around the country not only ignore the FBI’s data but also don’t bother sharing their data with the FBI at all. Among the offenders: the state of Illinois, which MAP has sued for the information. Hargrove recently reported that homicides were more likely to go unsolved in Illinois in 2015 than in any other state: Only 37.3 percent of the 756 homicides were cleared. That dreadful clearance rate would seem to go a long way toward explaining Chicago’s notoriously climbing homicide rate, just as the president and others start searching for solutions.

From his experience with the Gary police, Hargrove learned the first big lesson of data: If it’s bad news, not everyone wants to see the numbers. Lately, he’s taken to forcing the issue. Together with MAP Vice-Chairman Eric Witzig, a retired FBI investigator who worked with ViCAP, Hargrove has conducted teaching sessions with homicide detectives at meetings of the International Homicide Investigators Association and at the FBI’s Training Division in Quantico, Va. Hargrove gets the attention of the detectives in the room by using the JonBenét Ramsey case as a test for the database. The detectives watch as he selects “Colorado” under state, “strangulation” under weapon, “female” under victim’s sex, and “6” under victim’s age. Colorado has only one such case, JonBenét. But then Hargrove broadens the criterion to include strangulations of girls ages 5 through 10, and a second Colorado case pops up: Melanie Sturm, a 10-year-old girl found strangled in Colorado Springs in 1985. Then he broadens it nationwide and finds 27 unsolved cases, 11 of them in Western states. He shows them how easy it is to download this information into a list. It’s like something from CSI. “I believe every law enforcement agency should be made aware of and utilize this program’s database,” Janet Oliva, president of the FBI’s International Criminal Investigative Analysis Fellowship, told Hargrove.

The police in Atlanta are working with MAP now to trace a long string of unsolved murders. But elsewhere, there’s still some skepticism about the power of transparent data to serve the public good. For one thing, it’s expensive. “This is an open debate,” Hargrove says. “Things are getting so bad out there financially that the mayors are wondering, ‘Does it make sense for me to spend my resources on solving crimes against the dead when I’ve got the living who need help, too?’” Why not just grab the easy cases—the cases with witnesses, ballistics, and DNA— and put the hard ones on the back burner?

The answer, at least intuitively, would seem to be that at least some of these murderers will kill again. But if that were true, it ought to affect the murder rate. Sure enough, using his database, Hargrove has confirmed that this is the case. Pulling up information from 218 metropolitan jurisdictions in the 2014 Uniform Crime Report, he found that in the places with poor clearance rates, the homicide rate was almost double that of places where the clearance rate was better—from 9.6 homicides to 17.9 per 100,000 people.

“It makes perfect sense,” Hargrove says. “If you leave the killers to walk the street, why wouldn’t that cause more killings? The answer is, it does.”

Others have reached the same conclusions in different ways.

In Ghettoside, a powerful examination of the unsolved-murder epidemic in Los Angeles, author Jill Leovy raises the notion that solving murder cases legitimizes the social order, undermining the ad hoc phenomenon of “street justice” that emerges in lawless areas and makes people feel powerless. So much attention has been paid to police racial bias cases that another sort of injustice—lack of thorough policing—gets overlooked. “It’s not enough to just stop doing the wrong kind of policing,” Mark Funkhouser, a former mayor of Kansas City, Mo., and now publisher of the magazine Governing, wrote last fall. “It’s vital that we do much more of the right kind.”

A number of studies over the years show that strong community policing and giving high priority to casework can raise clearance rates, independently of workload and budget. This is where management comes in. “When Michael Nutter campaigned for mayor of Philadelphia in 2007, he was saying, ‘I’ll make solving major crimes a major issue in my administration,’” Hargrove says. “Well, damned if they didn’t elect him and damned if he didn’t do just that.” Over two years, Philadelphia raised its homicide clearances from 56 percent to 75 percent.

In Santa Ana, Calif., the clearance rate climbed from about 28 percent in 1993 to almost 100 percent in 2013, after a new police chief created a special homicide unit for gangs and attracted anonymous donations to offer higher rewards for tips leading to arrests. In Oakland, where clearance rates dropped to 30 percent in 2012, the police worked with the FBI to add five agents to the department’s squad of 10 full-time homicide investigators; in 2015 the clearance rate rose to 60 percent. MAP has joined forces with a local TV news station to shine a light on other underperforming police departments in the Bay Area.

“I don’t want to blast a particular politician,” Hargrove says, “but it’s been my experience that when you ask a police chief or a mayor in a well-performing police jurisdiction what their clearance rate is, the mayor and the police chief can snap those figures off, because they’re paying attention.”

As are the police in Austin. Vann, the Gary murderer, was caught not long after moving back to Indiana from Texas, where he’d spent a number of years. While Hargrove never heard back from the Gary police, he did hear from the police in Austin. “They said, ‘We need to know whether he could’ve killed anyone here.’”

Hargrove sent the Austin police data on every strangulation death in Texas. It looked like Vann had kept his nose clean; Hargrove couldn’t see any cases there that matched his pattern. “They must have agreed,” Hargrove says, “so that’s a kind of consultation.” The first, perhaps, of many.

By Robert Kolker

Published Articles By Lisa Rein

Rein, L. (2017, August 30). Interview with Timothy Leary’s Archivist Michael Horowitz [Article]. BoingBoing.

Rein, L. (2017, April 19) Today is the 74th anniversary of Albert Hofmann’s first LSD trip [Article] BoingBoing.

Rein, L. (2016, November 24) Never before published photos from Psychedelic Conference II in Santa Barbara, 1983 [Photographs by Cynthia Palmer]

Rein, L. with Doctorow, C. and Keith, M. (2016, August 1) Chelsea Manning, on facing life in solitary after attempting suicide

Rein, L. (2016, June 20) Acid Bodhisattva: The History of the Timothy Leary Archives During His Prison and Exile Years, 1970-1976 (Part Two) [Article]

Rein, L. (2015, November 23) Acid Bodhisattva: The History of the Timothy Leary Archives During His Prison and Exile Years, 1970-1976 (Part One) [Article]

Rein, L. (2014, November 7). How to Celebrate Aaron Swartz’s Legacy? Go to a Hackathon This WeekendA co- founder of Creative Commons talks about the Internet activist. [Article]

Rein, L. (2014, June 2). 7 Things You Might Be Doing Online That Could Get You Arrested: The Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, a criminal statute originally intended to prosecute felony computer hacking, can now result in a person’s going to prison for failing to abide by a website’s terms of service or end user agreement. [Article].

Rein, L. and Horowitz, M. (2014, June 5). Timothy Leary and Marshall McLuhan, turned on and tuned in [Article]. BoingBoing.

Rein,L. and Horowitz,M.(2014,June5).Leary,McLuhan and ElectronicTechnology[Article]. TimothyLeary

Rein, L. (2013, August 6). HRDAG and the Digital Commons [Article]. the-digital-commons/

Rein, L. and Horowitz, M. (2013, July 1). Prototype dissidents: Timothy Leary and Václav Havel at the dawn of the internet age [Article]. BoingBoing.

Rein, L. and Horowitz, M. (2012, October 15). Inner space and outer space: Carl Sagan’s letters to Timothy Leary (1974) [Article]. Timothy Leary timothy-leary-1974/

Rein, L. and Horowitz, M. (2012, September 10). Dock Ellis, Timothy Leary, LSD and America’s favorite pastime [Article]. Timothy Leary americas-favorite-pasttime/

Rein, L. and Horowitz. M. (2012, June 25). Never before published transcript of a conversation between John Lennon, Yoko Ono, Timothy Leary and Rosemary Leary – at the Montreal Bed-In, May 1969 [Article]. Timothy Leary conversation-between-john-lennon-yoko-ono-timothy-leary-and-rosemary-leary-%e2%80%93-at-the- montreal-bed-in-may-1969/

Rein, L. (2010, October 18). Hey, Mr. Spaceman: An interview with Edgar Mitchell [Article]. Humanity + Magazine.

Rein, L. (2009, August 24). Crashing Into The Moon. [Article] Humanity + Magazine.

Rein, L. (2009, July 5). Vint Cerf at Singularity University on social networking [Article]. Humanity + Magazine.

Rein, L. (2009, June 26). Life on Mars with Pete Worden [Article]. Humantiy+ Magazine.

Rein, L. (2007, October 24). Of mice and mitochondria… applying AI to bioinformatics to cure disease – interview with Ben Goertzel [Article] On Lisa Rein’s Radar.

Rein, L. (2004, December 29). It ain’t over till it’s over: A roundup of the recent events surrounding election 2004’s Ohio recount and voting machine fraud situation [Article]. Lisa  (The documentary film, Stealing America: Vote by Vote, Produced and Directed by Dorothy Fadiman, and using footage from my television archive, was based on the above article.

Rein, L. (2004, January 22). Brewster Kahle on the Internet Archive and people’s technology [Article].

Rein, L. (2003, September 11). Commentary: What’s real and make-believe with the RIAA subpoenas? [Article].

Rein, L. (2002, March). The world of XML tools – update [Article]. IEEE’s Internet Computing Magazine

Rein, L. (2001, September 21). Hot debate over the future of webcasting [Article]. CNET.

Rein, L. (2001, July 24). And justice for Adobe [Article]. O’Reilly Network.

Rein, L. (1999, May 5). The evolution of a privacy standard [Article].

Rein, L. (1998, December 19). XML in Ship-to-Shore Telemedicine [Article].

Rein, L. (1998, September). The next big picture: Scalable Vector Graphics for the web [Article]. Web Techniques

Rein, L. (1998, August 19). MS, Sun Weave Tangled Path [Article] Wired News.

Rein, L. (1998, August). The world of XML tools [Article]. IEEE’s Internet Computing.

Rein, L. (1998, July 8). Browser battles script on [Article]. Wired News.

Rein, L. (1998, July 7). Microsoft frowns on SMIL [Article]. Wired News.,1282,13478,00.html

Rein, L. (1998, June 12). The smarter classified [Article]. Wired News.

Rein, L. (1998, June 2). Your data as online commodity [Article]. Wired News.

Rein, L. (1998, May 15). How will PDAs paint pictures? [Article]. Wired News.

Rein, L. (1998, March 17). Perl opens arms to XML [Article]. Wired News.

Rein, L. (1998, February 3). Netscape: Bring on the frankenbrowsers [Article]. Wired News.

Rein, L. (1997, December 15). A truly organic network [Article]. Wired News.,1282,9154,00.html

Rein, L. (1997, December 9). XML and the new industry order [Article]. Wired News.

Rein, L. (1997, November 12). Browsers mask a bug in feature’s clothing [Article]. Wired News.,1282,8464,00.html

Rein, L. (1997, October 17). XML ushers in structured web searches [Article]. Wired News.,1282,7751,00.html

Rein, L. (1997, October 10). Interpreting the Java earthquake [Article]. Wired News.,1282,7616,00.html

Rein, L. (1997, October 9). XML Wins [Article]. Wired News.,1282,7592,00.html

Rein, L. (1997, October 6). XML rules. Any questions? [Article]. Wired News.,1282,7443,00.html

Rein, L. (1997, September 30). Microsoft Pushes Java Aside [Articles]. Wired News.,1282,7324,00.html

Something Magical Happened Last Night On The Steps of the Capitol

This Twitter storm just happened and I’ve been meaning to start making blog posts from relevant Twitter Storms for a while…

My Song: Call Your Senators – Save the Affordable Care Act

Update: Currently recording my own music for this. 🙂 Taking longer than expected 🙂

List of phone numbers to CALL YOUR SENATORS NOW and tell them to save the Affordable Care Act!

Call Your Senators – Save The ACA – Download as .mov file

Call Your Senators – Save The ACA – Download as an .mp4 file

Last night, I watched Xeni Jardin on MSNBC talk about how heathcare is not a political issue; it’s a human one:

I went to sleep around 8pm last night, exhausted from a horrible day all around. This is a song I wrote after waking up at 3am this morning freaked out and, for once, rather angry, about losing our healthcare, for many, almost as soon as they received it.

I’ve had Lady Gaga’s “Ayo” on my mind lately… and everything just came together.

List of phone numbers to CALL YOUR SENATORS NOW and tell them to save the Affordable Care Act!

Lyrics by Lisa Rein. Music is Instrumental “A-yo” from Lady Gaga:


Newborn babies have no sin
except the hospital they’re born in
They should know their place, they should know their place
Throw it in their, throw it in their face

Can’t wait till the senate comes around
to strike this mother fucker down
Tearin up the session, movin with aggression,
Now it’s a party

They passed a repeal in the house
Faster than you can say precondition
precondition precondition
it’s got me on a mission

Hey CALL YOUR SENATORS so you can remind ’em
To take a look behind it
Truth is where you find it
If you represent me and you kinda like it
Take a stand and fight it
or you’ll be saying bye bye

A-yo A-yo We smoking em all
A-yo A-yo We smoking em all
A-yo A-yo We smokin’ ’em all

They passed a repeal with the pres
Before they told us what it says
They play by different rules
Do they think we’re fools?
Thinking we can learn a thing or two

Can’t wait till this thing it dies for good
Faster than you can try to save it
You can try to fake it
but you’ll never make it
Don’t think that we won’t come for you!

So CALL YOUR SENATORS so you can remind ’em
take a look behind it
Truth is where you find it

If you represent me and you kinda like it
Take a stand and fight it
or you’ll be saying bye bye

A-yo A-yo We smoking em all
A-yo A-yo We smoking em all
A-yo A-yo We smokin’ ’em all

In case you are wondering: THIS IS POLITICAL SATIRE and is clearly covered under FAIR USE. (As SATIRE and POLITICAL commentary are CLEARLY PROTECTED BY THE FIRST AMENDMENT every way sideways.)

Disclaimer: I am warning Senators that we will “come for them” – and I am, of course, only talking about coming for them with peaceful non-violent means – and by not voting for them again, ever, if they vote for healthcare repeal. (Here are the 19 Republicans that flipped to kill our health care.) So don’t bother trying to go all “she’s advocating violence” on me. In contrast, repealing our healthcare is clearly a violent and deadly act placing millions of Americans at risk, many of them babies and children.

These Senators don’t seem to respond to anything but large numbers of angry constituents, so I guess we’d better give it to them.

Tell Your Senators, Today and every day: Don’t Support The ACA Repeal!

Everyone pick a time in the morning that’s most convenient for you to call – then do it every day for the next few weeks.  Making sure your voice is heard can be part of your daily routine — and will have the greatest impact.

Your Senators need to know that this issue is VERY important to you, and you will not stop calling until the Repeal effort is DEAD.

Find your senator and call them and say “Don’t Repeal the ACA! I am calling you every day until this madness is over.”

State Senator Office Location Phone Number
Alabama Strange, Luther Birmingham (205) 731-1500
Alabama Strange, Luther Huntsville (256) 533-0979
Alabama Strange, Luther Mobile (251) 414-3083
Alabama Strange, Luther Montgomery (334) 230-0698
Alabama Strange, Luther Washington, D.C. (202) 224-4124
Alabama Strange, Luther Wiregrass (334) 792-4924
Alabama Shelby, Richard Birmingham (205) 731-1384
Alabama Shelby, Richard Huntsville (256) 772-0460
Alabama Shelby, Richard Mobile (251) 694-4164
Alabama Shelby, Richard Montgomery (334) 223-7303
Alabama Shelby, Richard Tuscaloosa (205) 759-5047
Alabama Shelby, Richard Washington, D.C. (202) 224-5744
Alaska Murkowski, Lisa Anchorage (907) 271-3735
Alaska Murkowski, Lisa Fairbanks (907) 456-0233
Alaska Murkowski, Lisa Juneau (907) 586-7277
Alaska Murkowski, Lisa Kenai (907) 283-5808
Alaska Murkowski, Lisa Ketchikan (907) 225-6880
Alaska Murkowski, Lisa Mat-Su Valley (907) 376-7665
Alaska Murkowski, Lisa Washington, D.C. (202) 224-6665
Alaska Sullivan, Dan Anchorage (907) 271-5915
Alaska Sullivan, Dan Fairbanks (907) 456-0261
Alaska Sullivan, Dan Juneau (907) 586-7277
Alaska Sullivan, Dan Kenai (907) 283-4000
Alaska Sullivan, Dan Ketchikan (907) 225-6880
Alaska Sullivan, Dan Mat-Su Valley (907) 357-9956
Alaska Sullivan, Dan Washington, D.C. (202) 224-3004
Arizona Flake, Jeff Phoenix (602) 840-1891
Arizona Flake, Jeff Tucson (520) 575-8633
Arizona Flake, Jeff Washington, D.C. (202) 224-4521
Arizona McCain, John Phoenix (602) 952-2410
Arizona McCain, John Prescott (928) 445-0833
Arizona McCain, John Tucson (520) 670-6334
Arizona McCain, John Washington, D.C. (202) 224-2235
Arkansas Boozman, John El Dorado (870) 863-4641
Arkansas Boozman, John Fort Smith (479) 573-0189
Arkansas Boozman, John Jonesboro (870) 268-6925
Arkansas Boozman, John Little Rock (501) 372-7153
Arkansas Boozman, John Lowell (479) 725-0400
Arkansas Boozman, John Mountain Home (870) 424-0129
Arkansas Boozman, John Stuttgart (870) 672-6941
Arkansas Boozman, John Washington, D.C. (202) 224-4843
Arkansas Cotton, Tom El Dorado (870) 864-8582
Arkansas Cotton, Tom Jonesboro (870) 933-6223
Arkansas Cotton, Tom Little Rock (501) 223-9081
Arkansas Cotton, Tom Springdale (479) 751-0879
Arkansas Cotton, Tom Washington, D.C. (202) 224-2353
California Feinstein, Dianne Fresno (559) 485-7430
California Feinstein, Dianne Los Angeles (310) 914-7300
California Feinstein, Dianne San Diego (619) 231-9712
California Feinstein, Dianne San Francisco (415) 393-0707
California Feinstein, Dianne Washington, D.C. (202) 224-3841
California Harris, Kamala Fresno (916) 448-2787
California Harris, Kamala Los Angeles (213) 894-5000
California Harris, Kamala Sacramento (916) 448-2787
California Harris, Kamala San Diego (619) 239-3884
California Harris, Kamala San Francisco (213) 894-5000
California Harris, Kamala Washington, D.C. (202) 224-3553
Colorado Bennet, Michael Arkansas Valley (719) 542-7550
Colorado Bennet, Michael Denver Metro (303) 455-7600
Colorado Bennet, Michael Four Corners (970) 259-1710
Colorado Bennet, Michael Northern Colorado (970) 224-2200
Colorado Bennet, Michael Northwest/I-70W (970) 241-6631
Colorado Bennet, Michael Pikes Peak (719) 328-1100
Colorado Bennet, Michael San Luis Valley (719) 587-0096
Colorado Bennet, Michael Washington, D.C. (202) 224-5852
Colorado Gardner, Cory Colorado Springs (719) 632-6706
Colorado Gardner, Cory Denver (303) 391-5777
Colorado Gardner, Cory Fort Collins (970) 484-3502
Colorado Gardner, Cory Grand Junction (970) 245-9553
Colorado Gardner, Cory Greeley (970) 352-5546
Colorado Gardner, Cory Pueblo (719) 543-1324
Colorado Gardner, Cory Washington, D.C. (202) 224-5941
Colorado Gardner, Cory Yuma (970) 848-3095
Connecticut Blumenthal, Richard Bridgeport (203) 330-0598
Connecticut Blumenthal, Richard Hartford (860) 258-6940
Connecticut Blumenthal, Richard Washington, D.C. (202) 224-2823
Connecticut Murphy, Chris Hartford (860) 549-8463
Connecticut Murphy, Chris Washington, D.C. (202) 224-4041
Delaware Carper, Tom Dover (302) 674-3308
Delaware Carper, Tom Georgetown (302) 856-7690
Delaware Carper, Tom Washington, D.C. (202) 224-2441
Delaware Carper, Tom Wilmington (302) 573-6291
Delaware Coons, Chris Dover (302) 736-5601
Delaware Coons, Chris Washington, D.C. (202) 224-5042
Delaware Coons, Chris Wilmington (302) 573-6345
Florida Nelson, Bill Broward (954) 693-4851
Florida Nelson, Bill Fort Myers (239) 334-7760
Florida Nelson, Bill Jacksonville (904) 346-4500
Florida Nelson, Bill Miami-Dade (305) 536-5999
Florida Nelson, Bill Orlando (407) 872-7161
Florida Nelson, Bill Tallahassee (850) 942-8415
Florida Nelson, Bill Tampa (813) 225-7040
Florida Nelson, Bill Washington, D.C. (202) 224-5274
Florida Nelson, Bill West Palm Beach (561) 514-0189
Florida Rubio, Marco Jacksonville (904) 398-8586
Florida Rubio, Marco Miami (305) 418-8553
Florida Rubio, Marco Naples (239) 213-1521
Florida Rubio, Marco Orlando (407) 254-2573
Florida Rubio, Marco Palm Beach (561) 775-3360
Florida Rubio, Marco Pensacola (850) 433-2603
Florida Rubio, Marco Tallahassee (850) 599-9100
Florida Rubio, Marco Tampa (813) 287-5035
Florida Rubio, Marco Washington, D.C. (202) 224-3041
Georgia Isakson, Johnny Atlanta (770) 661-0999
Georgia Isakson, Johnny Washington, D.C. (202) 224-3643
Georgia Perdue, David Atlanta (404) 865-0087
Georgia Perdue, David Washington, D.C. (202) 224-3521
Hawaii Hirono, Mazie Hawaii (808) 522-8970
Hawaii Hirono, Mazie Washington, D.C. (202) 224-6361
Hawaii Schatz, Brian Honolulu (808) 523-2061
Hawaii Schatz, Brian Washington, D.C. (202) 224-3934
Idaho Crapo, Mike Eastern Idaho, North (208) 522-9779
Idaho Crapo, Mike Eastern Idaho, South (208) 236-6775
Idaho Crapo, Mike Idaho State (208) 334-1776
Idaho Crapo, Mike North Idaho (208) 664-5490
Idaho Crapo, Mike North-Central Idaho (208) 743-1492
Idaho Crapo, Mike South-Central Idaho (208) 734-2515
Idaho Crapo, Mike Washington, D.C. (202) 224-6142
Idaho Risch, Jim Boise (208) 342-7985
Idaho Risch, Jim Coeur D’Alene (208) 667-6130
Idaho Risch, Jim Idaho Falls (208) 523-5541
Idaho Risch, Jim Lewiston (208) 743-0792
Idaho Risch, Jim Pocatello (208) 236-6817
Idaho Risch, Jim Twin Falls (208) 734-6780
Idaho Risch, Jim Washington, D.C. (202) 224-2752
Illinois Duckworth, Tammy Chicago (312) 886-3506
Illinois Duckworth, Tammy Washington, D.C. (202) 224-2854
Illinois Durbin, Richard Carbondale (618) 351-1122
Illinois Durbin, Richard Chicago (312) 353-4952
Illinois Durbin, Richard Rock Island (309) 786-5173
Illinois Durbin, Richard Springfield (217) 492-4062
Illinois Durbin, Richard Washington, D.C. (202) 224-2152
Indiana Donnelly, Joe Evansville (812) 425-5813
Indiana Donnelly, Joe Fort Wayne (260) 420-4955
Indiana Donnelly, Joe Hammond (219) 852-0089
Indiana Donnelly, Joe Indianapolis (317) 226-5555
Indiana Donnelly, Joe Jeffersonville (812) 284-2027
Indiana Donnelly, Joe South Bend (574) 288-2780
Indiana Donnelly, Joe Washington, D.C. (202) 224-4814
Indiana Young, Todd Evansville
Indiana Young, Todd Fort Wayne
Indiana Young, Todd Indianapolis (317) 226-6700
Indiana Young, Todd New Albany (812) 542-4820
Indiana Young, Todd Washington, D.C. (202) 224-5623
Iowa Ernst, Joni Cedar Rapids (319) 365-4504
Iowa Ernst, Joni Council Bluffs (712) 352-1167
Iowa Ernst, Joni Davenport (563) 322-0677
Iowa Ernst, Joni Des Moines (515) 284-4574
Iowa Ernst, Joni Sioux City (712) 252-1550
Iowa Ernst, Joni Washington, D.C. (202) 224-3254
Iowa Grassley, Chuck Cedar Rapids (319) 363-6832
Iowa Grassley, Chuck Council Bluffs (712) 322-7103
Iowa Grassley, Chuck Davenport (563) 322-4331
Iowa Grassley, Chuck Des Moines (515) 288-1145
Iowa Grassley, Chuck Sioux City (712) 233-1860
Iowa Grassley, Chuck Washington, D.C. (202) 224-3744
Iowa Grassley, Chuck Waterloo (319) 232-6657
Kansas Moran, Jerry Hays (785) 628-6401
Kansas Moran, Jerry Manhattan (785) 539-8973
Kansas Moran, Jerry Olathe (913) 393-0711
Kansas Moran, Jerry Pittsburg (620) 232-2286
Kansas Moran, Jerry Washington, D.C. (202) 224-6521
Kansas Moran, Jerry Wichita (316) 631-1410
Kansas Roberts, Pat Dodge City (620) 227-2244
Kansas Roberts, Pat Overland Park (913) 451-9343
Kansas Roberts, Pat Topeka (785) 295-2745
Kansas Roberts, Pat Washington, D.C. (202) 224-4774
Kansas Roberts, Pat Wichita (316) 263-0416
Kentucky McConnell, Mitch Bowling Green (270) 781-1673
Kentucky McConnell, Mitch Ft. Wright (859) 578-0188
Kentucky McConnell, Mitch Lexington (859) 224-8286
Kentucky McConnell, Mitch London (606) 864-2026
Kentucky McConnell, Mitch Louisville (502) 582-6304
Kentucky McConnell, Mitch Paducah (270) 442-4554
Kentucky McConnell, Mitch Washington, D.C. (202) 224-2541
Kentucky Paul, Rand Bowling Green (270) 782-8303
Kentucky Paul, Rand Crescent Springs (859) 426-0165
Kentucky Paul, Rand Hopkinsville (270) 885-1212
Kentucky Paul, Rand Lexington (859) 219-2239
Kentucky Paul, Rand Louisville (502) 582-5341
Kentucky Paul, Rand Owensboro (270) 689-9085
Kentucky Paul, Rand Washington, D.C. (202) 224-4343
Lousiana Cassidy, Bill Alexandria (318) 448-7176
Lousiana Cassidy, Bill Baton Rouge (225) 929-7711
Lousiana Cassidy, Bill Lafayette (337) 261-1400
Lousiana Cassidy, Bill Lake Charles (337) 493-5398
Lousiana Cassidy, Bill Metairie (504) 838-0130
Lousiana Cassidy, Bill Monroe (318) 324-2111
Lousiana Cassidy, Bill Shreveport (318) 798-3215
Lousiana Cassidy, Bill Washington, D.C. (202) 224-5824
Lousiana Kennedy, John Washington, D.C. (202) 224-4623
Maine Collins, Susan Augusta (207) 622-8414
Maine Collins, Susan Bangor (207) 945-0417
Maine Collins, Susan Biddeford (207) 283-1101
Maine Collins, Susan Caribou (207) 493-7873
Maine Collins, Susan Lewiston (207) 784-6969
Maine Collins, Susan Portland (207) 780-3575
Maine Collins, Susan Washington, D.C. (202) 224-2523
Maine King, Angus Augusta (207) 622-8292
Maine King, Angus Bangor (207) 945-8000
Maine King, Angus Presque Isle (207) 764-5124
Maine King, Angus Scarborough (207) 883-1588
Maine King, Angus Washington, D.C. (202) 224-5344
Maryland Cardin, Ben Baltimore (410) 962-4436
Maryland Cardin, Ben Bowie (301) 860-0414
Maryland Cardin, Ben Cumberland (301) 777-2957
Maryland Cardin, Ben Rockville (301) 762-2974
Maryland Cardin, Ben Salisbury (410) 546-4250
Maryland Cardin, Ben Southern Maryland (202) 870-1164
Maryland Cardin, Ben Washington, D.C. (202) 224-4524
Maryland Van Hollen, Chris Washington, D.C. (202) 224-4654
Massachusetts Markey, Ed Boston (617) 565-8519
Massachusetts Markey, Ed Fall River (508) 677-0523
Massachusetts Markey, Ed Springfield (413) 785-4610
Massachusetts Markey, Ed Washington, D.C. (202) 224-2742
Massachusetts Warren, Elizabeth Boston (617) 565-3170
Massachusetts Warren, Elizabeth Springfield (413) 788-2690
Massachusetts Warren, Elizabeth Washington, D.C. (202) 224-4543
Michigan Peters, Gary Detroit (313) 226-6020
Michigan Peters, Gary Grand Rapids (616) 233-9150
Michigan Peters, Gary Lansing (517) 377-1508
Michigan Peters, Gary Marquette (906) 226-4554
Michigan Peters, Gary Rochester (248) 608-8040
Michigan Peters, Gary Saginaw (989) 754-0112
Michigan Peters, Gary Traverse City (231) 947-7773
Michigan Peters, Gary Washington, D.C. (202) 224-6221
Michigan Stabenow, Debbie Flint/Saginaw Bay (810) 720-4172
Michigan Stabenow, Debbie Mid-Michigan (517) 203-1760
Michigan Stabenow, Debbie Northern Michigan (231) 929-1031
Michigan Stabenow, Debbie Southeast Michigan (313) 961-4330
Michigan Stabenow, Debbie Upper Peninsula (906) 228-8756
Michigan Stabenow, Debbie Washington, D.C. (202) 224-4822
Michigan Stabenow, Debbie West Michigan (616) 975-0052
Minnesota Franken, Al Duluth (218) 722-2390
Minnesota Franken, Al Moorhead (218) 284-8721
Minnesota Franken, Al Rochester (507) 288-2003
Minnesota Franken, Al Saint Paul (651) 221-1016
Minnesota Franken, Al Washington, D.C. (202) 224-5641
Minnesota Klobuchar, Amy Metro (612) 727-5220
Minnesota Klobuchar, Amy Northeastern (218) 741-9690
Minnesota Klobuchar, Amy Northwestern & Central (218) 287-2219
Minnesota Klobuchar, Amy Southern (507) 288-5321
Minnesota Klobuchar, Amy Washington, D.C. (202) 224-3244
Mississippi Cochran, Thad Gulf Coast (228) 867-9710
Mississippi Cochran, Thad Jackson (601) 965-4459
Mississippi Cochran, Thad Oxford (662) 236-1018
Mississippi Cochran, Thad Washington, D.C. (202) 224-5054
Mississippi Wicker, Roger Gulfport (228) 871-7017
Mississippi Wicker, Roger Hernando (662) 429-1002
Mississippi Wicker, Roger Jackson (601) 965-4644
Mississippi Wicker, Roger Tupelo (662) 844-5010
Mississippi Wicker, Roger Washington, D.C. (202) 224-6253
Missouri Blunt, Roy Cape Girardeau (573) 334-7044
Missouri Blunt, Roy Columbia (573) 442-8151
Missouri Blunt, Roy Kansas City (816) 471-7141
Missouri Blunt, Roy Springfield (417) 877-7814
Missouri Blunt, Roy St. Louis/Clayton (314) 725-4484
Missouri Blunt, Roy Washington, D.C. (202) 224-5721
Missouri McCaskill, Claire Cape Girardeau (573) 651-0964
Missouri McCaskill, Claire Columbia (573) 442-7130
Missouri McCaskill, Claire Kansas City (816) 421-1639
Missouri McCaskill, Claire Springfield (417) 868-8745
Missouri McCaskill, Claire St. Louis (314) 367-1364
Missouri McCaskill, Claire Washington, D.C. (202) 224-6154
Montana Daines, Steve Billings (406) 245-6822
Montana Daines, Steve Bozeman (406) 587-3446
Montana Daines, Steve Great Falls (406) 453-0148
Montana Daines, Steve Hardin (406) 665-4126
Montana Daines, Steve Helena (406) 443-3189
Montana Daines, Steve Kalispell (406) 257-3765
Montana Daines, Steve Missoula (406) 549-8198
Montana Daines, Steve Sidney (406) 482-9010
Montana Daines, Steve Washington, D.C. (202) 224-2651
Montana Tester, Jon Billings (406) 252-0550
Montana Tester, Jon Bozeman (406) 586-4450
Montana Tester, Jon Butte (406) 723-3277
Montana Tester, Jon Glendive (406) 365-2391
Montana Tester, Jon Great Falls (406) 452-9585
Montana Tester, Jon Helena (406) 449-5401
Montana Tester, Jon Kalispell (406) 257-3360
Montana Tester, Jon Missoula (406) 728-3003
Montana Tester, Jon Washington, D.C. (202) 224-2644
Nebraska Fischer, Deb Kearney (308) 234-2361
Nebraska Fischer, Deb Lincoln (402) 441-4600
Nebraska Fischer, Deb Norfolk (402) 200-8816
Nebraska Fischer, Deb Omaha (402) 391-3411
Nebraska Fischer, Deb Scottsbluff (308) 630-2329
Nebraska Fischer, Deb Washington, D.C. (202) 224-6551
Nebraska Sasse, Ben Kearney (308) 233-3677
Nebraska Sasse, Ben Lincoln (402) 476-1400
Nebraska Sasse, Ben Omaha (402) 550-8040
Nebraska Sasse, Ben Scottsbluff (308) 632-6032
Nebraska Sasse, Ben Washington, D.C. (202) 224-4224
Nevada Cortez Masto, Catherine Las Vegas (702) 388-5020
Nevada Cortez Masto, Catherine Reno (775) 686-5750
Nevada Cortez Masto, Catherine Washington, D.C. (202) 224-3542
Nevada Heller, Dean Las Vegas (702) 388-6605
Nevada Heller, Dean Reno (775) 686-5770
Nevada Heller, Dean Washington, D.C. (202) 224-6244
New Hampshire Hassan, Maggie Manchester (603) 622-2204
New Hampshire Hassan, Maggie Washington, D.C. (202) 224-3324
New Hampshire Shaheen, Jeanne Berlin (603) 752-6300
New Hampshire Shaheen, Jeanne Claremont (603) 542-4872
New Hampshire Shaheen, Jeanne Dover (603) 750-3004
New Hampshire Shaheen, Jeanne Keene (603) 358-6604
New Hampshire Shaheen, Jeanne Manchester (603) 647-7500
New Hampshire Shaheen, Jeanne Nashua (603) 883-0196
New Hampshire Shaheen, Jeanne Washington, D.C. (202) 224-2841
New Jersey Booker, Cory Camden (856) 338-8922
New Jersey Booker, Cory Newark (973) 639-8700
New Jersey Booker, Cory Washington, D.C. (202) 224-3224
New Jersey Menendez, Bob Barrington (856) 757-5353
New Jersey Menendez, Bob Newark (973) 645-3030
New Jersey Menendez, Bob Washington, D.C. (202) 224-4744
New Mexico Heinrich, Martin Albuquerque (505) 346-6601
New Mexico Heinrich, Martin Farmington (505) 325-5030
New Mexico Heinrich, Martin Las Cruces (575) 523-6561
New Mexico Heinrich, Martin Roswell (575) 622-7113
New Mexico Heinrich, Martin Santa Fe (505) 988-6647
New Mexico Heinrich, Martin Washington, D.C. (202) 224-5521
New Mexico Udall, Tom Albuquerque (505) 346-6791
New Mexico Udall, Tom Carlsbad (575) 234-0366
New Mexico Udall, Tom Eastside (575) 356-6811
New Mexico Udall, Tom Las Cruces (575) 526-5475
New Mexico Udall, Tom Santa Fe (505) 988-6511
New Mexico Udall, Tom Washington, D.C. (202) 224-6621
New York Gillibrand, Kirsten Albany (518) 431-0120
New York Gillibrand, Kirsten Buffalo (716) 854-9725
New York Gillibrand, Kirsten Hudson Valley (845) 875-4585
New York Gillibrand, Kirsten Long Island (631) 249-2825
New York Gillibrand, Kirsten New York City (212) 688-6262
New York Gillibrand, Kirsten North Country (315) 376-6118
New York Gillibrand, Kirsten Rochester (585) 263-6250
New York Gillibrand, Kirsten Syracuse (315) 448-0470
New York Gillibrand, Kirsten Washington, D.C. (202) 224-4451
New York Schumer, Chuck Albany (518) 431-4070
New York Schumer, Chuck Binghamton (607) 772-6792
New York Schumer, Chuck Buffalo (716) 846-4111
New York Schumer, Chuck Melville (631) 753-0978
New York Schumer, Chuck New York City (212) 486-4430
New York Schumer, Chuck Peekskill (914) 734-1532
New York Schumer, Chuck Rochester (585) 263-5866
New York Schumer, Chuck Syracuse (315) 423-5471
New York Schumer, Chuck Washington, D.C. (202) 224-6542
North Carolina Burr, Richard Asheville (828) 350-2437
North Carolina Burr, Richard Gastonia (704) 833-0854
North Carolina Burr, Richard Rocky Mount (252) 977-9522
North Carolina Burr, Richard Washington, D.C. (202) 224-3154
North Carolina Burr, Richard Wilmington (910) 251-1058
North Carolina Burr, Richard Winston-Salem (336) 631-5125
North Carolina Tillis, Thom Charlotte (704) 509-9087
North Carolina Tillis, Thom Greenville (252) 329-0371
North Carolina Tillis, Thom Hendersonville (828) 693-8750
North Carolina Tillis, Thom High Point (336) 885-0685
North Carolina Tillis, Thom Raleigh (919) 856-4630
North Carolina Tillis, Thom Washington, D.C. (202) 224-6342
North Dakota Heitkamp, Heidi Bismarck (701) 258-4648
North Dakota Heitkamp, Heidi Dickinson (701) 225-0974
North Dakota Heitkamp, Heidi Fargo (701) 232-8030
North Dakota Heitkamp, Heidi Grand Forks (701) 775-9601
North Dakota Heitkamp, Heidi Minot (701) 852-0703
North Dakota Heitkamp, Heidi Washington, D.C. (202) 224-2043
North Dakota Hoeven, John Bismarck (701) 250-4618
North Dakota Hoeven, John Fargo (701) 239-5389
North Dakota Hoeven, John Grand Forks (701) 746-8972
North Dakota Hoeven, John Minot (701) 838-1361
North Dakota Hoeven, John Washington, D.C. (202) 224-2551
North Dakota Hoeven, John Western North Dakota (701) 580-4535
Ohio Brown, Sherrod Cincinnati (513) 684-1021
Ohio Brown, Sherrod Cleveland (216) 522-7272
Ohio Brown, Sherrod Columbus (614) 469-2083
Ohio Brown, Sherrod Lorain (440) 242-4100
Ohio Brown, Sherrod Washington, D.C. (202) 224-2315
Ohio Portman, Rob Cincinnati (513) 684-3265
Ohio Portman, Rob Cleveland (216) 522-7095
Ohio Portman, Rob Columbus (614) 469-6774
Ohio Portman, Rob Toledo (419) 259-3895
Ohio Portman, Rob Washington, D.C. (202) 224-3353
Oklahoma Inhofe, Jim Enid (580) 234-5105
Oklahoma Inhofe, Jim McAlester (918) 426-0933
Oklahoma Inhofe, Jim Oklahoma City (405) 608-4381
Oklahoma Inhofe, Jim Tulsa (918) 748-5111
Oklahoma Inhofe, Jim Washington, D.C. (202) 224-4721
Oklahoma Lankford, James Oklahoma City (405) 231-4941
Oklahoma Lankford, James Tulsa (918) 581-7651
Oklahoma Lankford, James Washington, D.C. (202) 224-5754
Oregon Merkley, Jeff Bend (541) 318-1298
Oregon Merkley, Jeff Eugene (541) 465-6750
Oregon Merkley, Jeff Medford (541) 608-9102
Oregon Merkley, Jeff Pendleton (541) 278-1129
Oregon Merkley, Jeff Portland (503) 326-3386
Oregon Merkley, Jeff Salem (503) 362-8102
Oregon Merkley, Jeff Washington, D.C. (202) 224-3753
Oregon Wyden, Ron Bend (541) 330-9142
Oregon Wyden, Ron Eugene (541) 431-0229
Oregon Wyden, Ron La Grande (541) 962-7691
Oregon Wyden, Ron Medford (541) 858-5122
Oregon Wyden, Ron Portland (503) 326-7525
Oregon Wyden, Ron Salem (503) 589-4555
Oregon Wyden, Ron Washington, D.C. (202) 224-5244
Pennsylvania Casey, Bob Central Pa (814) 357-0314
Pennsylvania Casey, Bob Erie (814) 874-5080
Pennsylvania Casey, Bob Harrisburg (717) 231-7540
Pennsylvania Casey, Bob Lehigh Valley (610) 782-9470
Pennsylvania Casey, Bob Northeastern (570) 941-0930
Pennsylvania Casey, Bob Philadelphia (215) 405-9660
Pennsylvania Casey, Bob Pittsburgh (412) 803-7370
Pennsylvania Casey, Bob Washington, D.C. (202) 224-6324
Pennsylvania Toomey, Pat Allentown/Lehigh Valley (610) 434-1444
Pennsylvania Toomey, Pat Erie (814) 453-3010
Pennsylvania Toomey, Pat Harrisburg (717) 782-3951
Pennsylvania Toomey, Pat Johnstown (814) 266-5970
Pennsylvania Toomey, Pat Philadelphia (215) 241-1090
Pennsylvania Toomey, Pat Pittsburgh (412) 803-3501
Pennsylvania Toomey, Pat Scranton (570) 941-3540
Pennsylvania Toomey, Pat Washington, D.C. (202) 224-4254
Rhode Island Reed, Jack Cranston (401) 943-3100
Rhode Island Reed, Jack Providence (401) 528-5200
Rhode Island Reed, Jack Washington, D.C. (202) 224-4642
Rhode Island Whitehouse, Sheldon Providence (401) 453-5294
Rhode Island Whitehouse, Sheldon Washington, D.C. (202) 224-2921
South Carolina Graham, Lindsey Golden Corner (864) 646-4090
South Carolina Graham, Lindsey Lowcountry (843) 849-3887
South Carolina Graham, Lindsey Midlands (803) 933-0112
South Carolina Graham, Lindsey Pee Dee (843) 669-1505
South Carolina Graham, Lindsey Piedmont (803) 366-2828
South Carolina Graham, Lindsey Upstate (864) 250-1417
South Carolina Graham, Lindsey Washington, D.C. (202) 224-5972
South Carolina Scott, Tim Lowcountry (843) 727-4525
South Carolina Scott, Tim Midlands (803) 771-6112
South Carolina Scott, Tim Upstate (864) 233-5366
South Carolina Scott, Tim Washington, D.C. (202) 224-6121
South Dakota Rounds, Mike Aberdeen (605) 225-0366
South Dakota Rounds, Mike Pierre (605) 224-1450
South Dakota Rounds, Mike Rapid City (605) 343-5035
South Dakota Rounds, Mike Sioux Falls (605) 336-0486
South Dakota Rounds, Mike Washington, D.C. (202) 224-5842
South Dakota Thune, John Aberdeen (605) 225-8823
South Dakota Thune, John Rapid City (605) 348-7551
South Dakota Thune, John Sioux Falls (605) 334-9596
South Dakota Thune, John Washington, D.C. (202) 224-2321
Tennessee Alexander, Lamar Chattanooga (423) 752-5337
Tennessee Alexander, Lamar Jackson (731) 664-0289
Tennessee Alexander, Lamar Knoxville (865) 545-4253
Tennessee Alexander, Lamar Memphis (901) 544-4224
Tennessee Alexander, Lamar Nashville (615) 736-5129
Tennessee Alexander, Lamar Tri-Cities (423) 325-6240
Tennessee Alexander, Lamar Washington, D.C. (202) 224-4944
Tennessee Corker, Bob Chattanooga (423) 756-2757
Tennessee Corker, Bob Jackson (731) 664-2294
Tennessee Corker, Bob Knoxville (865) 637-4180
Tennessee Corker, Bob Memphis (901) 683-1910
Tennessee Corker, Bob Nashville (615) 279-8125
Tennessee Corker, Bob Tri-Cities (423) 753-2263
Tennessee Corker, Bob Washington, D.C. (202) 224-3344
Texas Cornyn, John Central Texas (512) 469-6034
Texas Cornyn, John East Texas (903) 593-0902
Texas Cornyn, John North Texas (972) 239-1310
Texas Cornyn, John South Central Texas (210) 224-7485
Texas Cornyn, John South Texas (956) 423-0162
Texas Cornyn, John Southeast Texas (713) 572-3337
Texas Cornyn, John Washington, D.C. (202) 224-2934
Texas Cornyn, John West Texas (806) 472-7533
Texas Cruz, Ted Central Texas (512) 916-5834
Texas Cruz, Ted East Texas (903) 593-5130
Texas Cruz, Ted North Texas (214) 599-8749
Texas Cruz, Ted South Texas (956) 686-7339
Texas Cruz, Ted South/Central Texas (210) 340-2885
Texas Cruz, Ted Southeast Texas (713) 718-3057
Texas Cruz, Ted Washington, D.C. (202) 224-5922
Utah Hatch, Orrin Cedar City (435) 586-8435
Utah Hatch, Orrin Ogden (801) 625-5672
Utah Hatch, Orrin Provo (801) 375-7881
Utah Hatch, Orrin Salt Lake City (801) 524-4380
Utah Hatch, Orrin St. George (435) 634-1795
Utah Hatch, Orrin Washington, D.C. (202) 224-5251
Utah Lee, Mike Ogden (801) 392-9633
Utah Lee, Mike Salt Lake City (801) 524-5933
Utah Lee, Mike St. George (435) 628-5514
Utah Lee, Mike Washington, D.C. (202) 224-5444
Vermont Leahy, Patrick Burlington (802) 863-2525
Vermont Leahy, Patrick Montpelier (802) 229-0569
Vermont Leahy, Patrick Washington, D.C. (202) 224-4242
Vermont Sanders, Bernie Burlington (802) 862-0697
Vermont Sanders, Bernie St. Johnsbury (802) 748-9269
Vermont Sanders, Bernie Washington, D.C. (202) 224-5141
Virginia Kaine, Tim Abingdon (276) 525-4790
Virginia Kaine, Tim Manassas (703) 361-3192
Virginia Kaine, Tim Richmond (804) 771-2221
Virginia Kaine, Tim Roanoke (540) 682-5693
Virginia Kaine, Tim Virginia Beach (757) 518-1674
Virginia Kaine, Tim Washington, D.C. (202) 224-4024
Virginia Kaine, Tim Washington, D.C. (202) 224-4024
Virginia Warner, Mark Abingdon (276) 628-8158
Virginia Warner, Mark Norfolk (757) 441-3079
Virginia Warner, Mark Richmond (804) 775-2314
Virginia Warner, Mark Roanoke (540) 857-2676
Virginia Warner, Mark Vienna (703) 442-0670
Virginia Warner, Mark Washington, D.C. (202) 224-2023
Washington Cantwell, Maria Everett (425) 303-0114
Washington Cantwell, Maria Richland (509) 946-8106
Washington Cantwell, Maria Seattle (206) 220-6400
Washington Cantwell, Maria Spokane (509) 353-2507
Washington Cantwell, Maria Tacoma (253) 572-2281
Washington Cantwell, Maria Vancouver (360) 696-7838
Washington Cantwell, Maria Washington, D.C. (202) 224-3441
Washington Murray, Patty Everett (425) 259-6515
Washington Murray, Patty Seattle (206) 553-5545
Washington Murray, Patty Spokane (509) 624-9515
Washington Murray, Patty Tacoma (253) 572-3636
Washington Murray, Patty Vancouver (360) 696-7797
Washington Murray, Patty Washington, D.C. (202) 224-2621
Washington Murray, Patty Yakima (509) 453-7462
West Virginia Capito, Shelley Moore Beckley (304) 347-5372
West Virginia Capito, Shelley Moore Charleston (304) 347-5372
West Virginia Capito, Shelley Moore Martinsburg (304) 262-9285
West Virginia Capito, Shelley Moore Morgantown (304) 292-2310
West Virginia Capito, Shelley Moore Washington, D.C. (202) 224-6472
West Virginia Manchin, Joe Charleston (304) 342-5855
West Virginia Manchin, Joe Eastern Panhandle (304) 264-4626
West Virginia Manchin, Joe Fairmont (304) 368-0567
West Virginia Manchin, Joe Washington, D.C. (202) 224-3954
Wisconsin Baldwin, Tammy Eau Claire (715) 832-8424
Wisconsin Baldwin, Tammy Green Bay (920) 498-2668
Wisconsin Baldwin, Tammy La Crosse (608) 796-0045
Wisconsin Baldwin, Tammy Madison (608) 264-5338
Wisconsin Baldwin, Tammy Milwaukee (414) 297-4451
Wisconsin Baldwin, Tammy Washington, D.C. (202) 224-5653
Wisconsin Baldwin, Tammy Wausau (715) 261-2611
Wisconsin Johnson, Ron Milwaukee (414) 276-7282
Wisconsin Johnson, Ron Oshkosh (920) 230-7250
Wisconsin Johnson, Ron Washington, D.C. (202) 224-5323
Wyoming Barrasso, John Casper (307) 261-6413
Wyoming Barrasso, John Cheyenne (307) 772-2451
Wyoming Barrasso, John Riverton (307) 856-6642
Wyoming Barrasso, John Rock Springs (307) 362-5012
Wyoming Barrasso, John Sheridan (307) 672-6456
Wyoming Barrasso, John Washington, D.C. (202) 224-6441
Wyoming Enzi, Michael Casper (307) 261-6572
Wyoming Enzi, Michael Cheyenne (307) 772-2477
Wyoming Enzi, Michael Cody (307) 527-9444
Wyoming Enzi, Michael Gillette (307) 682-6268
Wyoming Enzi, Michael Jackson (307) 739-9507
Wyoming Enzi, Michael Washington, D.C. (202) 224-3424

This very useful table was scraped from the Daily Kos, because I didn’t want to link to them directly from the page that my song was on, because they are too partisan, and I’m hoping perhaps a republican or two might also enjoy the song.

Since it’s mainly Republicans that will have to be replaced, like the 19 Republicans that filpped yesterday to kill our heathcare, I didn’t want to turn them all off our Republican comrades immediately 🙂

And yet, the Daily Kos often does so many very useful things; like create this magnificent table of phone numbers… So, I will thank them for that 🙂 (But otherwise, “hey guys, you are scaring even me away with your relentless one-sided partisanship. Please stop – you are so factually accurate otherwise! Sincerely, me :-)”

Example Reference Page for 460 Mid-term Presentations

Here is what one “Reference Page” should look like 🙂

This first group on March 29th can have more time to get me the references, of course, since I’m just giving you the format today.

This is just the page that you use to launch media for your presentation from, and then it has a comprehensive list at the end of everything you used. That’s all it is! (With some introductory text 🙂

I. Introduction:

Jeff Sessions is President Trump’s Attorney General. Sessions was controversial for different reasons (

II. Some think that Attorney General Sessions may himself be involved in the Russian election tampering scandal. Others disagree…

This is where you explain your News Item:

re: X and Y did A, B and C (people places or things)

Now you give a little rundown — and show the articles you’re quoting from and/or show video clips if relevant.

Jeff Sessions was in the hot seat yesterday, Thursday, March 1, after it came out Wednesday evening that he remembered a visit with the Russian ambassador to the U.S. that he’d failed to mention during his congressional approval hearing.

Of note is the succinct wording of both Sessions and Paul Ryan on this issue. Attempting to pinpoint whether or not *Sessions himself is under investigation* or not. Pretty smart, in my opinion. If Sessions were to actually be indicted, certainly he’d have to recuse himself. But no one is saying that yet for sure.

What’s also interesting is that Sessions didn’t think that he would be caught saying he didn’t speak with the Ambassador. This was not a phone call that was “intercepted” or anything like the current surveillance controversy, but rather, over a face to face meeting in Sessions’ office. It seems odd to me that he would think no one would see him during an person meeting with the Russian Ambassador. (If I understand correctly, this meeting was *in Sessions’ office*.) This might suggest that Sessions didn’t think he was doing anything wrong, since he was doing it “in plain sight.” (But at this point, it remains unclear how the FBI even knows about the meeting.)

(Note re: above:  A little speculation OK – but make it clear you are speculating — note my language “This might suggest.” What I’m not saying is that it might just as easily NOT suggest that. :)

News source 1 said…

News source 2 said…

IV: Social Media Take

At the end of the day on March 2, 2017, amidst public pressure, Sessions recused himself from the FBI probe.

Video explaining this: (Note: You can show video, or a part of a video.)

V. More recently:

Meanwhile – more recently, 23 people asked the Justice Department to launch a criminal inquiry into its chief, Jeff Sessions


Social Media was also concerned about Sessions threats against “Sanctuary Cities”


1. Sessions met with Russian envoy twice last year, encounters he later did not disclose, By Adam Entous, Ellen Nakashima and Greg Miller for the Washington Post, March 1, 2017,

2. California’s Kevin McCarthy, a top House Republican, says Sessions should step aside from Russia investigation, By David Lauter for the Los Angeles Times, March 2, 2017,

3. Sessions spoke with Russian ambassador twice during Trump’s campaign
By Brooke Seipel and Olivia Beavers, for The Hill, March 1, 2017,

4. Sessions was more than Trump surrogate in meetings with Russian envoy, by
Kevin Johnson for USA Today, March 2, 2017,

5. Attorney General Jeff Sessions : ‘I Will Recuse Myself’ If Necessary, by Tony Capra and Erik Ortiz for NBC News, March 2, 2017,

6. Trump Attorney General Jeff Sessions urged to step aside from Russia probe, BBC (no author given), March 2, 2017

7. Jeff Sessions Recuses Himself From Russia Inquiry, by Mark Landler and Eric Lichtblau for the New York Times, March 2, 2017,

Time to Repeal and Replace FISA

FISA petition

Ask Congress To Repeal and Replace FISA

I could appreciate our new President’s sudden interest our country’s surveillance state, when he learned from Republicans in congress that his own communications had been swept up during “incidental collection.”

The point being that it’s not a stretch to say that most U.S. citizens could potentially be caught up in such collections.

A petition to Repeal and Replace FISA is at, demanding that Congress take action to repeal these secret FISA courts:



President Obama’s Comments on Immigration From His Final Speech

Today’s statement from Former President Obama supporting this weekend’s protests against President Trump’s recent immigration policy made me look up his final speech. (Since it was referenced in the statement today.)

Here’s what Obama said regarding immigration in his final speech:

But as I said before, I’m still a citizen. And I think it is important for Democrats or progressive who feel that they came out on the wrong side of this election to be able to distinguish between the normal back-and-forth, ebb-and-blow of policy. Now, are we going to raise taxes or are we going to lower taxes? Are we going to, you know, expand this program or eliminate this program? You know, how — how concerned are we about air pollution or climate change?

Those are all normal parts of the debate. And as I’ve said before, in a democracy sometimes you’re going to win on those issues and sometimes you’re going to lose. I’m confident about the rightness of my positions on a lot of these points, but we’ve got a new president and a Congress that are going to make their same determinations.

And there will be a back-and-forth in Congress around those issues. And you guys will report on all that.

But there’s a difference between that normal functioning of politics and certain issues or certain moments where I think our core values may be at stake. I put in that category if I saw systematic discrimination being ratified in some fashion. I put in that category explicit or functional obstacles to people being able to vote, to exercise their franchise.

I’d put in that category institutional efforts to silence dissent or the press. And for me at least, I would put in that category efforts to roundup kids who have grown up here and for all practical purposes are American kids, and send them someplace else, when they love this country.

They are our kids’ friends and their classmates, and are now entering into community colleges or in some cases serving in our military, that the notion that we would just arbitrarily or because of politics punish those kids, when they didn’t do anything wrong themselves, I think would be something that would merit me speaking out.