Progressive Maryland Weekly Memo for Monday, June 21, 2022

Yesterday marked the national holiday commemorating Juneteenth and today marks another day of hearings by the January 6 Commission looking into the deadly insurrection carried out  at the U.S. Capitol last year. It certainly is a momentous time in our country. The work of the Commission is a reminder of how important it is to shine a light on Trump’s actions and the attempts by white nationalists and their backers to overturn our democracy. 

Juneteenth celebrations and events provide a way to keep telling the truth about our country’s history. We hope you had a chance to honor this significant day in some way. Read our statement on Juneteenth if you haven’t yet. Juneteenth is also known as Freedom Day, so here at Progressive Maryland, we’re reflecting  on the ways in which these two events are converging, and the need to keep speaking truth to power in order to be free. We know that preserving our democracy, confronting our past, and making sure the truth prevails can help us build a better Maryland. 

Elections play a central role in this struggle for a better state and a better world. Let’s make sure that everyone participates in the Primary election and that progressives prevail at the ballot box. We need to ensure that candidates who believe in our democracy and who will work to advance racial justice get elected! Our individual votes and voices can open up a New Era in Maryland politics. We only have 28 days left to gather and harness the power of the grassroots. Sign up to join our growing election team!

On the state level, we will choose a new Governor, a new Comptroller, a new Attorney General, and who we send to the Maryland General Assembly. We’ll also decide who will represent us on the local level in County offices, on School Boards, and in Central Committees, as well as Judges and some city officials. Check out Progressive Maryland’s endorsed candidates


 

Quick Actions:

 

2022 Maryland Elections:

 Make your plan to vote in this critical Primary!  Here are the 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.
    • Voting by mail? Once you receive it, review your ballot, review information about the candidates, fill out the ballot and follow the instructions for mailing or dropping at a Ballot drop box location.
    • 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 in this critical Primary!  Get some sunshine and some steps in with our door knocking team. Or if you prefer, make phone calls from home. This is a great opportunity for students, too, to get some experience and community service hours. 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 these wonderful candidates. 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.

Remember, you have the right to vote. If anyone tries to stop you, call the Election Protection Hotline at 1-866-687-8683. Find more resources here

Our friends at Maryland Matters also have an election guide

 

PM Endorsed Candidate Corner

Check out Progressive Maryland’s endorsed candidates. You can learn more, too, from our posts and individual candidate websites and social media pages. 

 

Upcoming Events:

-Prince George’s County Council District 4 Candidate Forum: Sunday, June 26 3:00-5:00 p.m. in Greenbelt. Meet the candidates including Patrice Murray who has been endorsed by Progressive Maryland. Details here.

-Meet Del. Sheila Ruth, District 44B  Monday, June 27 at 7 pm. Come out to support one of Maryland’s most progressive legislators and healthcare for all champions, Del. Sheila Ruth. She’ll hold an in person event in Towson Monday June 27 at 7 pm. Details here.

-Meet Dannine Johnson, candidate for District 6 Prince George’s County School Board on Monday, June 27th from 5:30 - 8:30 in Largo. Dannine is an MPLI alumnae and has been endorsed by Progressive Maryland! Details here.

-Meet Ruben Amaya, candidate for Delegate in D10 this Friday, June 24th from 4-9pm at a community gathering in Catonsville:

 

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!

 

Healthcare Campaign: Make Medicines Affordable!  

The pharmaceutical industry is making off the charts profits but keeps raising the cost of life saving and life sustaining medicines. Their actions are outrageous and we’re working to rein them in.  PM is partnering  with our national affiliate People’s Action and Sen. Warren’s office on the Make Medicines Affordable Campaign. Stay tuned for updates here and contact Patty if you want to get involved. We need Sen. Van Hollen and Sen. Cardin and Maryland’s Democratic House Members to sign a letter to HHS Secretary Becerra urging him to use his executive authority to lower prices on essential medicines. Our thanks to Rep. Raskin for signing on.  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 patients and families who are struggling.

 

Drug Policy: The Overdose Crisis

As many of you know,  the bill that the People's Action Overdose Crisis Cohort has been working to win over the past two years, is headed to the House Floor for debate and a vote TOMORROW (Wednesday, June 22nd). The MAT Act is included in H.R. 7666, the Vote Yes on Restoring Hope for Mental Health and Well being Act. The legislation will remove huge barriers that have been keeping folks - primarily black, brown and rural folks - from being able to access medication assisted treatment. Please take action right now! Click this link and send an urgent message to Congress!

 

Local Chapter Updates:

Progressive Harford 

Welcome to our new members, many of whom have joined in the past few weeks.Thank you! We launched our voter outreach activities last week. Contact Zack to learn how to join and how to get involved. 

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. 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 about the petition gathering drive,  send an email to [email protected].

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. 

Progressive Montgomery 

Contact Patty for more information about our election efforts in Montgomery County. We’re holding a voter contact canvass this Saturday, June 25th from 12:30-2:30pm in Silver Spring and on Sunday afternoon, June 26th, in two locations in MoCo.

 

State and National News:

Congress is back in session for  one more sprint and they are hot on Trump’s trail, but also working on gun reform  and maybe a downsized version of Build Back Better that will be Less Bad than Sen. Manchin would have it be … it all needs to be packed into this week, before the two-week July 4 recess…

Meanwhile, back here in Maryland, those with the (limited) power to do much about rising prices seem to have gone fishing, except Gov. Larry Hogan, who seems obsessed with criminal behavior in Baltimore schools’ grading policy. 

Find it all in this week’s News You Can Use blog post.

 

Events From Progressive Maryland & Our Allies

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.