The Trump-hating folks at Indivisible are very excited about the prospects of "holding Trump accountable" on arraignment day while at the same time lament that he is still the clear frontrunner for 2024. A special call to action was even issued today that directed Indivisible members around the country to call on any elected Republicans to find out if they support Trump, and if they do, remind them that Trump is allegedly "endangering our national security and willfully breaking the law."
Indivisible believes that MAGA needs to be "defeated" in order to save our "democracy" (don't they mean constitutional republic?). At any rate, it’s such a high priority that the group has even developed the Give No Ground Guide: Defeating MAGA Mayhem in order to share lessons, best practices, and plans that can be employed by local chapters ahead of elections.
The group has defined three broad buckets of issues that it has deemed “wildly unpopular” which are described with angry rhetoric and false narratives in Indivisible’s guide:
1) MAGA’s attacks on people: They’re outlawing abortion in all cases, even rape and incest. They’re coming after contraception. They’re terrorizing trans kids and their families. They’re laying the legal groundwork to outlaw every right not explicitly listed in the Constitution (that’s gay marriage, interracial marriage, and a lot of other things).
2) MAGA’s attacks on schools: They’re banning books. They’re calling teachers pedophiles and groomers. They’re defunding schools. They’re censoring our history. They block any attempts at modest, popular reforms to address gun violence in schools.
3) MAGA’s attacks on democracy: January 6th coup. The Big Lie. Presidential pardons. They’re enacting voter suppression laws and election subversion laws. They’re promising to overturn the next election if they don’t like the results.
The Indivisibles are frequently reminded that MAGA Republicans are "dangerous extremists who are already doing damage” and that Indivisible represents "the normal majority that is doing our damnedest to actually address real issues.” In case you are wondering what Indivisible’s real issues are… in addition to “democracy”, it has identified four core advocacy issues: economic justice, climate, health care and immigration, with a connecting thread of racial justice (think "critical race theory") throughout all of them.
Labeling politicians as MAGA is a key goal for Indivisible, so it recommends a series of tactics to “force MAGA” on the record in order to draw "unwanted media attention" on these allegedly “unpopular” MAGA positions. These tactics include:
Laughtivism — The strategic use of humor and mocking in order to undermine the authority of an opponent. Think memes, contrived press releases, fake news conferences and more.
Media Events & Political Theater — This is about doing stunts for media coverage… examples include the “body bag protests” like the ones used to protest red state governors’ early coronavirus responses, an activist in a chicken suit that followed a former senator everywhere, a large group of folks showing up to Republican campaign headquarters in Trump masks, activists going to conservative events to wave Russian flags, etc.
Getting MAGA Supporters on the Record — The belief is that MAGA Republicans are so “deeply embarrassing” that if you simply get them on the record with an official MAGA position, you will cause great shame. Suggestions here include using fake petitions to con MAGA Republicans into revealing their positions, tricking MAGA Republicans into holding extremist signs at protests, and infiltrating MAGA social media accounts to expose alleged extreme content.
Birddogging — This is best done by a group of people who are dedicated to taking down a particular candidate, so they follow the candidate at every event in order to ask questions intended to expose the candidate, while others videotape the event for social media. This is best done in teams of at least 2-3 people or more who are dispersed throughout the audience.
Letters to the Editor and Op-eds — Tactics here include resurfacing old embarrassing things over and over again, highlighting gun safety especially after a shooting, exposing “extreme” views on abortion, forcing a politician to "answer for January 6th” or resign, demanding an apology over any manufactured crisis, and reminding readers that MAGA Republicans are “dangerous” especially for “attacking educators” and “politicizing schools.” Another suggestion is to position yourself as "someone who votes for the person, not the party” so you sound less extreme.
The purpose of these tactics, according to the guide, is to intentionally and strategically create conflict with MAGA Republicans, who are clearly deemed a threat to the progressive, Trump-hating extremists at Indivisible.
Now that you know the national Indivisible playbook, it’s really easy to see when those tactics are being employed on a local level, for example by the Greenwich chapter of Indivisible, and how it leverages a friendly relationship with the Greenwich Free Press in order to execute its Op Ed strategy.
One also has to wonder if the recent events in Greenwich (the "groomer" signs) and in Hartford (the swastika and white supremacy messages painted over a Black Lives Matter mural) are also part of the "political theater" aspect of the playbook.
It certainly would be fitting within the guidance offered by Indivisible, wouldn't it?