Progressive Maryland Weekly Memo for Monday, June 13, 2022

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It’s a busy time of year! Graduations, end of school, weddings, vacations, visitors, swim meets, softball tournaments, gardening, community festivals, outings, and more. Not to mention work, juggling family needs, and trying to keep up with and process the news of the day. One big event this summer that deserves our full  attention no matter where we live or what our schedules may be: the Primary Election in July. The simple act of voting not only keeps our democracy going, it  gives us a chance to express our support for candidates who want to make positive progressive change. Every vote matters! Four years ago, the outcome in the County Executive race in the Montgomery County Primary was decided by 80 votes (out of about 130,000 votes cast). 

 

Our individual votes matter and this year we are working to collectively gather our voices and votes to make a difference for progressive candidates. Find out how to make change happen -- together -- in the Memo. Read on.



 

It’s a busy time of year! Graduations, end of school, weddings, vacations, visitors, swim meets, softball tournaments, gardening, community festivals, outings, and more. Not to mention work, juggling family needs, and trying to keep up with and process the news of the day. One big event this summer that deserves our full  attention no matter where we live or what our schedules may be: the Primary Election in July. The simple act of voting not only keeps our democracy going, it  gives us a chance to express our support for candidates who want to make positive progressive change. Every vote matters! Four years ago, the outcome in the County Executive race in the Montgomery County Primary was decided by 80 votes (out of about 130,000 votes cast). 

 

Our individual votes matter and this year we are working to collectively gather our voices and votes to make a difference for progressive candidates. We want to harness the power of grassroots progressives and we need your help to do it during this critical election cycle. On the state level, we will choose a new Governor, a new Comptroller and a new Attorney General. We’ll decide who we send to the Maryland General Assembly and who will represent us on the local level in County offices. School Board members and Central Committee members will get elected as well as Judges and some city officials and School Board members!  

 

We say it often but it is true: there’s a great deal at stake up and down the ballot. Let’s all Pledge to Vote!  Need more information? Learn more about the candidates and their priorities: here’s a good place to start: Check out Progressive Maryland’s endorsed candidates. You can learn more, too, from individual candidate websites and social media pages. 

 

Get involved with PM’s voter contact efforts and with our slate of candidates. We have an incredible opportunity to usher in a new era and elect a more representative group of local and state government officials this July.  Let’s make the most of it! We are grateful to all of the PM leaders and members who are volunteering and getting involved. We can’t do it without them. 

 

Thank you, and we look forward to seeing you on the campaign trail!

 

In solidarity, 

The PM Team

Quick Actions:

2022 Maryland Elections:

 

The Primary election is Tuesday, July 19. Make your plan to vote!  Here are options and dates to help you decide: 

  • Mail In Option: Request a ballot until July 12 Click here to learn how you can request a mail-in ballot
  • Early Voting: Thursday, July 7 – Thursday, July 14 Check the local Board of Elections website for voting locations and hours. 
  • Tuesday, July 19: Primary Election Day Check your local Board of Elections website for polling locations and hours. 

Make your plan to volunteer with our voter contact  program!  Get some sunshine and some exercise with our door knocking team   or make phone calls from home. This is a great opportunity for students, too, to get some experience on campaigns. We’re canvassing and phonebanking each and every day– all you need to do is find a couple of hours in your schedule to help us reach other  Marylanders. . Sign up today! Contact Yves for more information. We’ll also need your help for coverage at Early Voting and Election Day polling places in July from July 7-14.

 

Our Throwdown Thursday phonebank is the place to be on Thursdays at 6:00 p.m.  Come meet lie minded folks, have fun and make a difference for one of our Slate campaigns. 6–8pm. Click this link to let us know you’ll join.

 

 

PM Endorsed Candidate Corner

 

Meet Laurie-Anne Sayles this evening at our virtual House Party! She’s running for an At-Large seat on the Montgomery County Council. Progressive Maryland and the Jews United for Justice Campaign Fund will host this virtual event tonight at 7 pm.  Come learn more about Laurie-Anne, her experience, and her progressive vision and values. RSVP here.


Save the date to meet progressive candidates in Baltimore County, including Ruben Amaya for Delegate in D10. Come enjoy a barbecue with live music with Ruben and others on Friday, June 24th in Catonsville:

 

William “Billy” Reid who is running for State Delegate in Frederick in District 3 and Ruben Amaya who is running for Delegate in D-10 in Baltimore County were mentioned in this recent  Maryland Matters piece. Congratulations to them and their campaigns!

 

View our full list of endorsements on our website!

Task Forces & Campaigns Updates:

 

✊🏾 Justice Task Force: Police Accountability

Please sign this petition by the ACLU to urge the current Prince George’s County Council members to pass a strong police accountability board!

 

 

🏠 Returning Citizens Task Force (previously known as the Reentry Work Group!): Grant Program Update

Making use of a generous grant from a local funder, Progressive Maryland’s Returning Citizens Task Force (RCTF) awarded grants to eight organizations – Acivilate, Damascus House, The Denney House, Joe’s Movement Emporium, Jordan Peer Recovery, Making A Difference LLC, Neen Cares Inc, SLK Health Services Corporation -- who are doing outstanding work assisting those reentering  society after spending time in prison. Seven of the eight grant recipients took part in an all-day meeting Saturday, June 11, at the Zion Church (Greenbelt Campus). RCTF grants are aimed at not only supporting the excellent work already being done, they are also designed to encourage collaboration and cooperation among all providers.Judged by that standard, the meeting (with over 20 invited participants) was a resounding success. The program consisted of a welcome by Zion Church and by Progressive Maryland, highlights from representatives of each of the grantee organizations

speaking about the distinct services they provide, and describing the underlying spiritual and social values which guide the work they do. All the participants and presenters recognized that prison is itself a form of trauma which must be addressed directly while simultaneously providing resources and places to find resources that  that could enable people to live with the dignity and respect to which all individuals are entitled.

 

Read the whole RCTF Grant Kickoff Event Update on our Blog

 

 

💰 Healthcare Campaign: Rx Drug Pricing 

The pharmaceutical industry is making record profits and keeps raising the cost of life saving and life sustaining medicines. Their actions are unconscionable especially given the needs of millions of struggling Americans. PM is partnering  with our national affiliate People’s Action and Sen. Warren’s office on a new campaign: the Make Medicines Affordable Campaign. Stay tuned for updates here and contact Patty if you want to get involved. We’re asking Sen. Van Hollen and Sen. Cardin and Maryland’s Democratic House Members to join a letter to HHS Secretary Becerra urging him to use his executive authority to lower prices on essential medicines. Ultimately, moving to a Medicare For All system will allow us to more fully address the systemic Rx drug pricing and industry issues. In the meantime, this kind of executive action could provide real relief to Amerricans burdened by the soaring cost of medicine. 

 

  

💛 Drug Policy Campaign: The Overdose Crisis

We expect the Medication Assisted Treatment Act (MAT Act) to get a floor vote in the House the week of June 20th! Last week the Overdose Crisis Cohort of People’s Action  held a successful briefing of Congressional Progressive Caucus members. The advocates  educated Members of Congress on policy issues, messaging research on the overdose crisis and their personal experience with harm reduction and medication assisted treatment. Why does this bill matter? Last year, more than 108,000 people died of overdose. Many of those preventable deaths were caused because folks couldn't access treatment like buprenorphine. Right now only 1 in 5 people who need access to buprenorphine are able to get it. And Black Americans face even more barriers to access than white Americans. That’s why It's time to pass the MAT Act to remove the stigma-based barriers to treatment!


Check out the Overdose Crisis Cohort's 2021 Report: No More Drug War to learn more about the powerful work that we are part of through People’s Action.

Local Chapter Updates:

 

Progressive Harford 

Welcome to our new members, including three more folks who signed up last week! Thank you! We’re looking forward to our first voter contact activities this week: a phone bank on Tuesday and a canvass on Thursday.  Be sure to join our growing chapter so you can attend our next chapter meeting on June 20. Contact Zack to learn more.

 

Anne Arundel County Chapter 

Progressive Maryland is leading a campaign on behalf of Fair Elections Maryland to win public financing for County Executive and County Council races in Anne Arundel. PM has worked to win Fair Elections for several years in a number of jurisdictions. We succeeded (with help from allies) in Montgomery County in time for the 2018 cycle. We won in 2020 in Baltimore County. We’re excited that we have an opportunity to bring the system to another one of our state’s largest counties. 

 

The first step in the process is a petition effort to collect the 10,000 signatures from registered county voters required to bring the question to the ballot in November. For more information send an email to [email protected].

 

 

Progressive Montgomery 

Contact Patty for more information about our election efforts in Montgomery County. We’re holding a voter contact canvass Saturday, June 18th 12:30-2:30 in Silver Spring. You can join a phone bank or text bank, too.

State and National News:

 

Possible good news, for a change, in Congress -- some modest tightening of access to guns may pass.Meanwhile, in Maryland, prepping for more of this pandemic plus the next one (?); a Hogan veto increases election results uncertainty and (for sure) opens up more time for Big Lies to grow; Dem Gov hopefuls feel pressure on education futures; state's higher ed schools show variety in recovery from COVID pause. Find it all in the News You Can Use blog post.

Events From Our Allies: 

 

Saturday, June 18 | 10 am  (Washington, DC) - The Poor People’s Campaign is organizing a Poor People’s and Low-Wage Workers’ Assembly and Moral March on Washington & to the Polls this Saturday! People’s Action, PM’s national affiliate and PM are endorsing organizations. The gathering is intended to  declare the power of poor and low-wealth people and to say that we must rise up and transform this system that is killing us and our communities. Learn more and RSVP here.


Tuesday, June 24 | 7:00 - 9:00 pm - Prince George's County Executive Candidates Forum sponsored by Prince Geroge's County Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, The League of Women Voters, NAACP, and National Pan-Hellenic Council. This event will be in-person (at Prince George's Community College) and virtual. For either, you must pre-register. More information is available at this link.

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].

>>Read more on the homepage of progressivemaryland.org