In March 2021, legislation was introduced that would authorize a $5 billion investment by the federal government in K-12 US history and civics education over the next five years. The sponsors in the US House of Representatives are Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), Rep. Tom Cole (R-OK) and Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR). The lead sponsors in the US Senate are Sen. Chris Coons (D-DE) and Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX). NCH has endorsed the legislation, the “Civics Secures Democracy Act (CSDA).” (HR 1814, S. 879). Click here to learn more details about the bills.
Unfortunately, for a variety of reasons, the bills have languished in both the House and Senate. As a result, our advocacy efforts on the CSDA were temporarily put on hold. The legislation has been rewritten to address policy concerns that have arisen, further refining the federal government’s role in the innovative programs and to identify a budget “offset” to pay for them.
I’m happy to report the revised bill was reintroduced in the Senate today! The Civics Secures Democracy Act now has 4 new original cosponsors in the Senate—Senators Angus King (I-ME), Mark Kelly (D-AZ), Jim Inhofe (R-OK), and Bill Cassidy (R-LA). We will be working hard in the coming weeks to garner additional bipartisan cosponsors in the Senate.
Our next goal is reintroduction in the House this summer with a bipartisan cohort of Representatives. Constituent outreach was key to winning the support of Senators from across the political spectrum, and similar email and phone calls to House offices will have the same effect.
CivXNow is a large coalition of stakeholder groups who support an increased federal investment in K-12 US history and civics education. NCH and many of our member organizations are supporters of CivXNow’s efforts on the “Civics Secures Democracy Act.” They are the lead organization in coordinating lobbying efforts among the more than 170 groups that have endorsed the legislation.
NCH rarely issues “all-hands-on-deck” legislative alerts. However, this is one of those times where we need your help both from an organizational standpoint and in mobilizing your members! Please remember even though NCH has endorsed the bill, individual organizations within the coalition are free to endorse as well.
Please read over this material and do what you can to assist in this advocacy campaign. As you can see from their email below, there are numerous ways you can get involved. For example, your members can send a personalized email to their Members of Congress by simply entering their zip code at their legislative alert center. The advocacy tools, scripts, and social media posts they have provided are designed to be “plug-and-play” that will require minimal effort for you to use and send to your members.