Successes: What We're Achieving Together


Ending the Endless War

The 2001 Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF) has given two presidents a blank check to justify new wars, deadly drone attacks around the world, detentions at Guantanamo Bay and U.S. airstrikes in Iraq and Syria. FCNL lobbyists in Washington and around the country are leading efforts to repeal this law and insist that Congress debate and vote on every war. In the last year, we have convinced more than 200 members of Congress to vote (at different times) for repeal of the AUMF. As Congress considers a new authorization against the Islamic State, we continue to press members to first repeal the existing law, which allows the president to act virtually without limit.

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Iran: Diplomacy Works

For nearly a decade FCNL has led faith‐based lobbying for diplomacy with Iran, mobilizing our powerful network of constituents to influence Congress. Through this work, we have helped give diplomacy the space to succeed. In March, the U.S. and Iran reached a diplomatic breakthrough, outlining a deal to keep Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon. FCNL has consistently helped persuade members of Congress to speak out in favor of diplomacy and stopped efforts to derail talks. As a result, Congress has not voted on new Iran sanctions legislation in nearly two years. FCNL's pro‐diplomacy leadership has been cited in the Wall Street Journal, Politico, U.S. News & World Report, CNN and other media outlets, and 200 constituent letters to the editor have appeared in newspapers in all 50 states.

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Climate Change: A Bipartisan Way Forward

FCNL is helping to create space for congressional action on climate change. We’ve met with more than 30 Democratic and Republican lawmakers to urge them to act as leaders, parents and people of faith. Many lawmakers have expressed private support, and this fall, a Republican representative publicly agreed to draft a resolution calling for Congress to acknowledge and act on climate change. We are working with faith and other partners to build more bipartisan support and pass legislation in the next Congress.

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De-Militarizing U.S. Police Forces

This May, President Obama announced that the federal government will stop giving certain military equipment to local police departments. Even before killings by police in Ferguson, New York, Baltimore and elsewhere focused national attention on U.S. policing, FCNL was laying the groundwork to get military equipment off Main Street. We have collaborated closely with Rep. Hank Johnson (D‐GA) on the Stop Militarizing Law Enforcement Act, legislation that includes many of the provisions in the president's executive order. Now we are working to move this legislation forward so these changes will last beyond the Obama administration.

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Building Structures for Peace

FCNL continues to work to shift the U.S. government's focus from late intervention in violent conflicts to early action to support peacebuilding efforts. Our lobbyists play an important role in coalitions that advocate for State Department funding and structures to prevent violence, and our advocacy helped establish an interagency Atrocities Prevention Board. Now we are working to make those structures a permanent part of the U.S. government.

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Tapping the Energy, Ideas and Innovation of Young Adults

College students and other young adults have long been a part of FCNL’s change‐making efforts. In 2011 we began a dramatic expansion of our work with people in this age group. This year nearly 300 people came to Washington for our Spring Lobby Weekend — a 45% increase over the previous year. We also established an Advocacy Corps to promote grassroots engagement, and we visited more than 60 colleges and universities around the country. We're seeing the results in advances on climate action and ending endless wars, and we are well on our way to raising the money for a permanent endowment to these programs.

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Mass Incarceration: Ease Harsh, Discriminatory Sentencing

As a result of harsh sentencing laws, the U.S. is the world's leader in incarceration, with 2.2 million people behind bars. FCNL is working to reform these sentencing laws, which unequally burden people of color. Our lobbyist is a key part of the coalition working to win passage of the Smarter Sentencing Act. This legislation would cut the length of mandatory sentences, give judges more discretion on sentencing and allow thousands of federal prisoners to seek fairer sentences. The bill cleared a legislative hurdle in 2014 and has growing bipartisan support in the current Congress.

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Cutting the Pentagon and Nuclear Weapons Budgets

While Pentagon spending has declined from its height during the Iraq War, the U.S. government still spends almost as much on the military as it did during the Cold War and Vietnam War. FCNL's current lobbying focuses in two areas: eliminating the loophole that lets the Pentagon avoid spending caps and opposing congressional efforts to fund the Pentagon by cutting domestic spending. As one way to reduce the Pentagon budget, we advocate for the SANE Act, legislation that would eliminate $100 billion in nuclear weapons spending over the next decade.

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