Progressive Maryland Weekly Memo for Monday, April 11, 2022

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Today is Sine Die, the final day of the Maryland Legislative Session until it reconvenes in January 2023. As the General Assembly prepares to adjourn at midnight tonight, we’re taking stock of some of the major victories of this legislative session. The Climate Solutions Now Act of 2022, a sweeping bill to dramatically reduce statewide emissions over the coming decades, has become law, as has the Healthy Babies Equity Act, which guarantees Marylanders access to prenatal care regardless of their immigration status...

Over the weekend, Democratic supermajorities in both chambers acted quickly to override a number of progressive bills that were vetoed by Gov. Hogan late last week. Thanks to swift legislative action, the Time to Care Act – a paid family & medical leave bill that has been one of Progressive Maryland’s top priorities this session – has become law!! Veto overrides also saved the Abortion Care Access Act, which will expanding abortion access in our state, and measures that grant collective bargaining rights to lawyers at the Office of the Public Defender and to some MTA employees. Read on for more legislative updates and various ways you can get involved with our electoral efforts as we approach the July primary election!


Quick Actions:


2022 Maryland Elections

There’s a new date for the Maryland primary: The Court of Appeals has rescheduled the Gubernatorial Primary Election for Tuesday, July 19. Mark your calendars today with the key dates in the new election timeline: 

  • Tuesday, June 28: Last day to register to vote in the primary
  • Thursday, July 7 – Thursday, July 14: Early voting from 7 AM – 8 PM
  • Tuesday, July 12: Last day to request a mail-in ballot (But there’s no need to wait! Click here to learn how you can request a mail-in ballot today)
  • Tuesday, July 19: Election Day

It’s springtime! It’s a beautiful time of year for getting outdoors and meeting people in their neighborhoods (while masked and keeping a safe distance).  We are door knocking as well as phone banking to reach voters about the critical races on the ballot in the Primary.  People power makes the difference for progressive candidates! Visit pgmd.us/electionvolunteer to sign up  to volunteer with us and the candidates who are campaigning on our issues and core progressive values. We’ll provide the training and support you need so any experience level is welcome. If you have experience we need you to help lead our canvasses and phone banks. 

And of course.. don’t forget to check out our Throwdown Thursday phonebank, happening again this week from 6–8 PM. Click this link to let us know you’ll join! You’ll meet some great folks, and we’ll provide training and support. 

Note to Candidates: If you’re running for office, have already filed for candidacy, and are interested in being considered for our endorsement, you may complete a candidate questionnaire here.

 

🗳 Candidate Corner

Join us to canvass for two champions of the environment, Laurie-Anne Sayles and Natali Fani-González, during a special canvass celebrating Earth Day on Saturday, April 23! Come out for door knocking, community building, and a chance to meet these great candidates for Montgomery County Council — spend some time this Earth Day weekend getting the word out to voters about candidates who are ready to take climate action. RSVP today at pgmd.us/CanvassDayofAction423. Contact Patty or Tanya if you'd like to help or learn more!

Carlos Childs, our endorsed candidate for Charles County Commissioner District 3, did an interview about his campaign with a Charles County podcast recently. Listen to the interview here!

Learn more about all of our endorsed candidates for 2022 on the Progressive Maryland website! Go to pgmd.us/2022endorsements for candidate bios and links to support their campaigns.


Statewide & Federal Updates

🩺 Medicare for All

Momentum is building — help us keep it going!! More than 120 Democratic Members of Congress have signed on to sponsor The Medicare for All Act (H.R. 1976), which received powerful supportive testimony at the recent U.S. House Oversight and Reform Committee hearing on “Exploring  Pathways to Universal Healthcare." We appreciate the comments Rep. Raskin (D8) and Rep. Sarbanes (D3) shared at the proceedings about the benefits of Medicare for All. Rep. Brown (D4) and Rep. Mfume (D7) are also sponsors, but three of Maryland’s Democratic House Members still haven’t signed on.

We’ve set up a tool you can use to contact these representatives today! Please take a moment and urge them to join their Maryland colleagues in sponsoring this critical bill at https://pgmd.us/m4anow

Medicare for All will meet the healthcare needs of everyone in our country and create a system that puts patients, care providers and healthcare workers first, not the demands of profit-driven insurance and pharmaceutical companies. We’re thrilled to learn Sen. Sanders plans to introduce his companion bill in the Senate and to hold a hearing in May in the Budget Committee. Please contact Malcolm or Patty to get involved in our spring and summer campaign to organize for Medicare For All. We need your help to step up our public outreach and grassroots organizing around this critical issue!

 

💜 Paid Family & Medical Leave

The Time to Care Act is officially law in Maryland! This bill to establish a statewide paid family and medical leave program in Maryland faced a difficult path to becoming law, and late last week it was vetoed by Governor Hogan despite its successful passage out of both chambers. Thankfully, members of the House and Senate moved quickly to override Hogan’s veto and ensure Maryland that workers will have access to this critical program. Marylanders could start receiving benefits in January 2025. Thank you to our partners in the Time to Care coalition and to all the Progressive Maryland members who fought for this victory! Check out a quote on the legislation from PM Healthcare Task Force leader Shayne Dizard in this recent Washington Informer article

 

⚖️ Reentry Work Group

What happens after incarceration? Join our Reentry Work Group next Thursday, April 21 for the second annual National Returning Citizens Virtual Conference, "Another Chance.” We’ll come together to address issues related to reentry that not only disproportionately impact the health and safety of African American communities, but are an urgent priority for our entire nation. Sponsored by the federal 400 Years of African American History Commission, registration for the conference is free and open to the public.  Participate in one or more of the ten (10) breakout sessions. Listen, learn, and leave inspired with strategies to advocate for true transformative practices in your local, state and national community!

Guest sponsors include the Prison Fellowship, the National Alliance for Faith and Justice, and Rebound Employment. The program and recordings of last year's conference are available here. Register for the 2022 conference today at https://nrcvc.eventbrite.com, and please email the Reentry Work Group if you plan to attend!  


Local Updates

Progressive Harford 

Progressive Harford County is having its first chapter meeting next Monday, April 18 at 7 PM on Zoom! We’ll discuss developing chapter bylaws, establishing procedures, and identifying priority electoral races. Register to join us here!

Progressive Montgomery 

Celebrate Earth Day Weekend with local environmental champions and candidates! ! Join leaders and activists from Montgomery County, Progressive Maryland’s statewide Environmental Justice Task Force, and our allies for an exciting voter outreach event the afternoon of Saturday, April 23! We’ll hear from PM endorsed candidates Laurie-Anne Sayles and Natali Fani-González on their plans to push for bolder action on climate change and environmental justice if (& when!) they’re elected to the County Council. We’ll provide snacks, canvassing training, and support. Please join us for a fun afternoon of door knocking and outreach — RSVP today at pgmd.us/CanvassDayofAction423! Contact Tanya or Patty for more information. 

Progressive Prince George’s 

We're just a few days away from our big Prince George's County Council Elections check-in! Come to the virtual chapter meeting this Friday, April 15 from 6–7:30 PM to get involved with the fight to take back the County Council for our communities. Register here to join us and learn how we can win, together!


Become a Progressive Maryland Member 

If you care about the legislation and issues shared in this memo, please support our work by becoming a Progressive Maryland member today! Our members power our organizing, outreach and advocacy work. We provide flexible membership categories — folks can choose to waive dues or sign up to give a monthly donation. You can find more details about the benefits and how to join at pgmd.us/join. You can ask one of our organizers, too, to tell you more! 

PS. Just in case you needed another reason to join — members have the opportunity to participate in a Progressive Maryland fantasy baseball league this year! Fill out this form if you’d like to participate!


State and National News:

Today is Sine Die in Annapolis, and at the time of this memo’s sending the Maryland General Assembly has yet to adjourn. The General Assembly office staff will likely continue grinding late into the night, after the legislators have headed to their location of choice – perhaps a pub or the Orioles’ home opener – to celebrate. If you call in a late plea backing a bill, remember to thank them! 

With the midterm elections this year, this will be the last Assembly session for some legislators — and not necessarily of their own choosing. In the coming months, Maryland voters have the opportunity to take stock of how lawmakers have represented us in Annapolis during their terms and decide whether we want them to continue representing us going forward. We’ll be continuing to roll out endorsements over the course of the coming months leading up to the (delayed) primary in July. Get the whole picture about vetoes that were overridden, last-gasp bills trying to get unstuck before sine die, and more, including federal maneuvers, in this week’s roundup of News You Can Use!

 


Events From Progressive Maryland & Our Allies:

Thursday, April 14 | 5–6:30 PM (Silver Spring) — Join the Silver Spring Justice Coalition this Thursday for a #CareNotCops Demonstration at the Montgomery College Cultural Arts Center (7995 Georgia Ave, Silver Spring, MD). We’re coming together to denounce the police violence that took the life of Ryan LeRoux, a young Black man from Montgomery County, and to reject the state’s attorney’s claims that the actions of the police were justifiable. Read more here, and sign up here to join us

Friday, April 15 | 6–7:30 PM (virtual) — Join us for a virtual Progressive Prince George’s Chapter Meeting & Council Elections Check-in! We need a County Council that fights WITH and FOR the people of Prince George’s, and we’re coming together to make it a reality. RSVP here for your Zoom link!

Thursday, April 21 | 12–4:30 PM (virtual) — Join PM’s Reentry Work Group for the 2022 National Returning Citizens Virtual Conference. Listen, learn, and leave inspired with strategies to advocate for true transformative practices in your local, state and national community! Registration is free and open to the public here — contact the Reentry Work Group with any questions!

Saturday, April 23 | 12:30–4 PM (Wheaton) — Join us in Montgomery County to celebrate Earth Day by door-knocking with County Council candidates and progressive champions Laurie-Anne Sayles and Natali Fani-González. Meet the candidates and talk to voters in the community about the upcoming election! RSVP here for more information about this exciting event.

Saturday, June 18 | 10 AM (Washington, DC) — We’re still a couple months out, but the Poor People’s Campaign is organizing a Poor People’s and Low-Wage Workers’ Assembly and Moral March on Washington & to the Polls in June! This event will be a declaration of the power of poor and low-wealth people to say this system is killing us, and we won't stand for it any longer. Learn more and RSVP here.


Progressive Maryland BlogSpace:

We value creating space for our members to express their thoughts on any issues related to our campaigns. Have an idea for a blog post? You can submit writing, film, graphic design, etc. to be published on our website to the blog moderator Woody at [email protected]


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