The original idea behind the PurpleExpat was to provide fact-based information to Americans abroad to deal with the unjust and discriminatory treatment by our Government. Before an American overseas had to piece together who supported Bills that were causing American citizens abroad to lose banking services, or passing laws that would double tax pensions or even local country welfare payments. Who would do this? Are they listening to us?
We will be officially launching the EXPATVOTES database this week.
Finding information on Congress and positions is difficult. Since the “expat community” is spread around the world, there has been no central source of truth for the community. There is some hype. There are also many people who have alternative motives, like representing the compliance industry. There is a lot of partisanship. If we have any chance to start demanding that our Congress stops its War on us and starts representing us, we need a source of fact. Otherwise, we will be taken as “a bunch of people complaining about filling out forms”, or “people who want to avoid paying their fair share” or the “hair on fire FATCA fighters”.
That is why we have made an effort to pull facts together. No more hyperbole, no more partisanship. We hold individual MoCs responsible. Not Parties. Not other organizations.
Holding Congress Accountable
When we have facts, we can address our Members of Congress with statements like, “you voted “Yes” for the Hire Act, this vote had the following impact on my life…”. We have context for our discussions and communication. EXPATVOTES is meant to pull together information from various sources to enable you to understand how your Congressional Representation has been working for you. You can hold them personally accountable.
What are the positions of your member of Congress?
The positions of each Member of Congress is not public. Nobody assesses Congress based on positions regarding Americans abroad. We will attempt to gather those positions in EXPATVOTES. That information comes from you. We have designed a way to assess responses that you receive (or not receive) from your Representative and Senators. We will add them into a score.
With the clarity of who did what, we could begin to converse with facts with our Congress representation. We would be able to ask questions like:
Since you supported American Jobs Creation Act, the Tax Increase Prevention and Reconciliation Act (TIPR)…..it seems that you are in favor of punishing Americans overseas. What are your positions on correcting these problems that those Bills have caused and supporting Residence-Based taxation and remedying the discrimination that FATCA has created?
It is a complete fact-based question. Not partisan, not hype. Hold them accountable.
The PurpleExpat’s goal is to provide a central repository for fact-based clarity and information to Americans abroad. No affiliation, no special interest.
In the next few days, we will try to get some press about EXPATVOTES (we still have a few bugs, but you can use it).
The press line will be, “For the first time, Americans abroad have a repository of information on each member of Congress, their voting record and stated opinions for this highly unrepresented community spread around the world.”
We have gathered the information on members of Congress and voting records. Now we need your help for the rest.
What can you do?
- Write your Congressman a letter or email asking for their positions on Resident-Based Taxation, FBAR, FATCA, or generally if they feel that Americans abroad should continue to be punished. You need to write your Member of Congress anyway. They need to hear from us.
- Send us your response. We will score it and agree with you on our assessment.
We will add those scores and comments to EXPATVOTES.
EXPATVOTES is one tool that we are working on to promote fact-based arguments on the topics of Americans abroad. We need your help to get it to work. We will be making a real press announcement in the next few days. Please feel free to help by getting the word out to others. Feel also free to Join the PurpleExpat (it’s free, like we should be).
Thanks! Keep fighting!