Activists staging Saturday "Die-In" protesting Hogan inaction on health care threat

Progressive Maryland will join other activist groups spearheading a "Die-In" Saturday at the Governor's mansion to protest Larry Hogan's minimal effort to protect Marylanders' health care coverage from his GOP buddies in Congress and the White House. "Certainly, Marylanders did not expect to have a governor who would abandon us like this,” activist leader Yasemin Jamison said.

MARYLAND POLITICAL ACTION GROUPS TO STAGE “DIE IN” AT GOVERNOR’S MANSION IN ANNAPOLIS

Protesting Gov. Larry Hogan’s refusal to stand up to Washington and protect health care for millions of Marylanders, activists from several non-partisan political action groups -- including Progressive Maryland -- plan to circle the Governor’s mansion and capital area and stage a “Die In” on Saturday (March 25).  The groups plan to hold a rally from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. with signs representing the health ailments and diseases for which they say Marylanders desperately need good and affordable health care, and protest the GOP repeal of the Affordable Care Act, and Hogan’s silence.

           Yasemin Jamison, who leads a growing volunteer group called Anne Arundel County Indivisible that works on a multitude of issues, says that her group is one of many around Maryland that are angry that Hogan, a celebrated beneficiary of taxpayer-funded health care, now appears to discount those needs for Marylanders.

           “We have our U.S. Representatives John Sarbanes, Anthony Brown, Elijah Cummings, Jamie Raskin, Steny Hoyer, and Senators Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen, who are in Washington fighting hard for us— to keep the citizens of Maryland insured. Meanwhile, our governor is hiding out, doing nothing to stop the GOP from steamrolling our current health care and promising to veto sick leave for families. He’s basically hanging us out to die,” says Jamison, who, along with many in her coalition, has been greatly helped by the Affordable Care Act. “I can’t even believe that we’re in a place where our leaders are talking about giving us less care. We need to go further than the ACA. We need to have more and less expensive care, not shut people out of care altogether. It’s absolutely inhuman. Certainly, Marylanders did not expect to have a governor who would abandon us like this.”

 Health care advocates point out that bills moving through the Assembly -- SB0571 and HB0909 – will provide for a Maryland Health Insurance Coverage Protection Commission, aimed at “assessing the impact [of] potential federal changes to specified health care programs” and recommending state action to preserve Marylanders’ health care coverage, contrary to the Governor’s actions.

         Another thing that irks protestors, Jamison says, is that last week, after the Maryland House and Senate voted to give paid sick leave for Marylanders, Hogan called the bill a “business killer” and promised the bill was “Dead on Arrival” and he would veto it. Although the bill was overwhelmingly passed, getting enough votes in both chambers to be veto proof, Jamison says that Hogan’s empty veto threat shows that his platform is profit over people.