woody woodruff

Solidarity is critical, in and outside of Prince George's County. Big money and corporate thinking just about run the show and we the people must become the showrunners.

  • Progressive Maryland Weekly Memo for Monday, December 20, 2021

    memo_logo.pngHappy holidays from all of us at Progressive Maryland! We look forward to continuing our work with you in the new year.

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  • Federal and Maryland roundup of news for progressives -- bye bye BBB or not

    manchin_jabbed_by_HCAN.pngAfter an event-filled weekend, is the big story Joe M or O-EM Chron -- Maryland sees a spike in cases while Larry Hogan preens on Fox News Sunday with a "What, me worry?" while our West VA neighbor Sen. Joe Roadblock attempts an on-air bill kill, upstaging Hogan for Fox airtime.

    Dems scramble to reset the Build Back Better bill for passage while alternately scorching the earth around Manchin only to be reminded he lives on a yacht ("houseboat") in the Potomac.

    Cases climb in our state but there's a giant surplus to spend; good news about e-vehicles and support...


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  • Political Maryland -- where the parties are; how they are changing

    polarized_parties.pngPolitical scientist David Lublin, who hosts the long-running blog Seventh State, has a look at the state of play among the two major parties in Maryland. In blogs posted late last week and today, he runs down the changes and shifting political loyalties of Marylanders across this very diverse state.


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  • Progressive Maryland Weekly Memo for Monday, December 13, 2021

    memo_logo.pngVeto overrides were the big news out of Annapolis last week -- Last week’s Special Legislative Session had both some exciting and disheartening outcomes. While some crucial bills had successful veto overrides, other important legislation was tabled indefinitely - essentially meaning it was taken off the table entirely. Read below to learn more about the veto overrides we are celebrating and why there is much more work to be done in the 2022 Session in hopes to make up for some truly disappointing losses this year. 

    Speaking of 2022, election campaigns are well underway and there are plenty of opportunities to get involved with progressive candidates! This and much more in the memo.



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  • published Federal and state progressive roundup in Home 2021-12-13 10:50:56 -0500

    Federal and state progressive roundup

    bailout_sig.jpgA forest of veto override activity "in Annapolis" contrasts sharply with continued gridlock in DC -- though a few flowers are blooming amid the carnage. We round up what has been going on in these seats of power and how progressives can work to forward good things in both. A summary of this post with a link to the full package appears in this week's Monday Memo from Progressive Maryland, one of the oases in the news desert.

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  • Roughshod, self-serving redistricting in Prince George's -- followed by silence

    ballot_box.jpgA Prince George's resident writes: "I was appalled on Nov. 16, 2021, as I watched the Prince George’s County Council approve the Davis/Franklin map (CR-123-2021) for the new Prince George’s County redistricting lines. I watched the session late into the night as over 100 people spoke against CR-123-2021 and NO ONE spoke in favor of it (over 150 people had signed up to speak but not all of them were able to stay on the line for hours and hours).

    "I was shocked that the council could so blatantly ignore the will of Prince George’s residents.

    "What has also been shocking is the silence from our county executive, Angela Alsobrooks."


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  • Progressive Maryland Weekly Memo for Monday, December 6, 2021

    MD_state_house.jpgHere's the Weekly Memo with what activists and working families need to navigate this dizzying week in Annapolis and DC.

    New legislative districts for Maryland and overrides (maybe) of a lot of good bills vetoed by Larry Hogan after this spring’s session are on the table for this brief, intense week. Important measures to ease the lives of working people – better mass transit, more accountability for law enforcement, criminal justice and decarceration, collective bargaining, climate justice and a better response to COVID. And about the feds– important stakes for Build Back Better, voting rights, the debt ceiling and other critical needs held hostage to each other in gridlock land. How to budge them? Find out here...


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  • Politics! Government! Both in Annapolis and DC! Double carnival this week.

    state_house_image_wikimedia_commons.jpgMaryland politics are, for a change, more exciting than those in Washington, D.C. That’s because the General Assembly has only a week to wrap a lot of business with fewer chances to kick the can down the road, compared to Congress, which would be equally exciting issues-wise if the very big stakes were not buried in the small-time, venal behavior of the near-deadlocked chambers.

    New legislative districts for Maryland and overrides (maybe) of a lot of good bills vetoed by Larry Hogan after this spring’s session are on the table for this brief, intense week. Important measures to ease the lives of working people – better mass transit, more accountability for law enforcement, criminal justice and decarceration, collective bargaining, climate justice and a better response to COVID. 

    And about the feds– While the MD General Assembly begins its sudden-death scuffle over redistricting and veto overrides today, the grind in DC goes on, with Build Back Better, the debt ceiling, voter rights and other critical needs holding one another hostage courtesy of rules that shouldn’t have survived the 19th Century. We’ll have a brisk summary from People’s Action in their every-Monday PA weekly forecast, plus what to do as activist individuals to make your collective voices heard. Find it all here, but don't miss the opportunities for activism in the Weekly Memo as well, coming to your inbox today.


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  • Open Letter to Assembly leaders: Choose the best District 1 map option

    ballot_box.jpgProgressive organizations in US House District 1 as well as some statewide have written to the leaders of both Assembly chambers to express "our support for a new Congressional map that restores balance to Maryland’s First District, and protects our democracy from radicals who would overturn the will of the voters for political gain. We urge you to use your power to create a competitive First District where anti-democratic extremists are not immune to accountability from the voters." If this effort for a fair redistricting map falls short, "we would hate to look back with regret that we did not do more to save our democracy."


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  • Progressive Maryland Weekly Memo for Monday, November 29, 2021

    not_bluffing.jpgWe hope you had a safe and happy holiday weekend!

    Tomorrow is Giving Tuesday, and we hope this year you’ll choose to make a gift to support our grassroots advocacy efforts at Progressive Maryland. As a grassroots organization, we rely on small donations from progressives like you to bring our vision for a better Maryland to life. You can donate at this link — no gift is too small, any amount makes a difference

    Thanks to your help, we’ve been able to develop strong issue campaigns on the local, state, and federal levels, and we’ve trained dozens of electoral candidates on how to run successful campaigns. We're entering the final stretch of 2021 on a strong note because of supporters like you. 

    Check out campaign developments and additional opportunities to get involved in this week's memo.

    In Solidarity,

    The Progressive Maryland Team


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  • COVID, BBB, COP and other acronyms in the news that affect you

    Progressive Maryland tries to keep activists up to date on the matters that really matter. Here is our account from last week, starting with federal issues that affect every worker and working family in Maryland.

    Media conventional and unconventional give us a perspective on the pandemic's latest threat, the enduring climate threat, Build Back Better in the Senate sausage machine, and other issues.


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  • Honoring indigenous people in Maryland today and always

    chesapeake_bay_scene.jpgThis Indigenous Peoples Heritage Month, we acknowledge the Accohannock Indian Tribe, Assateague Peoples Tribe, Nause-Waiwash Band of Indians, Piscataway Conoy Tribe, Piscataway Indian Nation, Pocomoke Indian Nation and Youghiogheny River Band of Shawnee Indians as the original stewards of Maryland's lands.

    It is our responsibility as settlers to acknowledge the ongoing effects of settler colonialism, and to recognize that we benefit from the displacement, genocide, and past and present violence against Indigenous people on whose ancestral lands present-day United States, including the state of Maryland, stands. 


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  • Making our state healthy again means understanding everybody's starting line

    congress_bigger_bolder_nyt_ad_may_21.pngHow you are doing has a lot to do with where you start. In an age when many politicians like to point to a "level playing field" we need to check out the history of inequality to make good judgments on how to make change that works for all of us --including our state's use of federal funds.

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  • Progressive Maryland Weekly Memo for Monday, November 22, 2021

    not_bluffing.jpgAs we approach the Thanksgiving holiday, we’re taking time here at Progressive Maryland to focus on gratitude and giving. 


    We draw instruction and inspiration from social justice movement leaders everywhere, especially during these tumultuous times. We’re so grateful for their work and perspective. Our grassroots members, supporters, and volunteers who persisted with us in the struggle to get the U.S. House of Representatives to pass the Build Back Better Act last Friday inspire us, too. Now it’s time to take the fight to the Senate!


    November is Native American Heritage Month, and we hope our efforts honor our Native American brothers and sisters.


    Thanks for all you do — have a safe and happy holiday!


    In Solidarity,

    The Progressive Maryland Team



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  • Robbie Leonard endorsed for BACO state's attorney by a progressive alliance

    robbie_leonard.pngProgressive Maryland and Working Families Party have announced their allied endorsement of Robbie Leonard, a "proven champion of justice," for Baltimore County State's Attorney. "Voters are ready for real criminal justice reform ..."

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  • Progressive Maryland Weekly Memo for Monday, November 15, 2021


    Thank you for your ongoing support! Today’s Memo has updates, calls to action, news about our upcoming events, and ways to stay involved. We hope you’ll continue to support our issue campaigns and check out our opportunities to volunteer for the 2022 elections!


    Thanks for being in this together.


    In Solidarity,

    The Progressive Maryland Team

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  • Progressive Maryland Weekly Memo for Monday, November 8, 2021

    memo_logo.pngWe’ve had a busy start to November and we can’t let up until Congress votes to pass the Build Back Better budget deal, the Freedom To Vote Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act.  And given the attacks by right wing lawmakers around the country on reproductive rights and on policies that support unions and the right to organize we should also be urging the House and  Senate to  pass legislation that will  guarantee abortion health care for women and workplace democracy for workers. Congress did pass and the President did sign the infrastructure bill (BIF) last week. We preferred to see Infrastructure and BBB voted on at the same time but there is a promise and a plan coming together for a vote next week on the budget deal. There are things to cheer about in the infrastructure bill: job creation, funding to  help mitigate environmental and health hazards posed by lead water pipes and Superfund sites, and investments in public transit and the manufacture of solar panels and wind farms that will help us green our energy supply. But we have more to do. Read on, and find out how to pitch in.


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  • "We should never stop learning" -- a teacher's journey to respect for diversity in the classroom

    maryland_rainbow.jpg"[It's easy to fall for the] myth that the fight for LGBTQIA rights was only about protecting wealthy white people like Caitlyn Jenner. This false narrative is currently spread by numerous online commentators, who are hostile to the idea of transgender people. I discovered the irony of this false narrative when I started to investigate the history of trans-gendered people across the world. The white supremacy that caused racist whites to segregate schools based on race was the same white supremacy that attempted to invalidate the fluidity of gender and sexuality identities.  

         While it may seem like endless letters are being added to the LBGTQIA label, a deep dive into human history reveals just how fluid the idea of gender has always been in cultures around the world.


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  • Progressive Maryland Weekly Memo for Monday, November 1, 2021


    congress_bigger_bolder_nyt_ad_may_21.pngOn the eve of the nail biting Virginia elections and Supreme Court hearings on reproductive rights it may be hard to feel optimistic or to stay determined. We get it--right wing groups and the public officials who support them seem at times to be holding sway even though our positions on issues are popular among voters. The public knows that things like the Build Back Better Act will help many people, especially folks facing health and housing insecurity issues, workers, seniors, kids and everyone who lives in a community that desperately needs public resources and government support. That’s why we need to keep organizing; we can’t let others discourage us from speaking up and speaking out for better laws and public policies.

    This week the Build Back Better (BBB) agenda may finally get a vote, along with the infrastructure bill (BIF.) These budget proposals and policies in their final form will not contain all the things for which we have been advocating. But if taken together (BBB and BIF)  the approach that the Congressional Progressive Caucus has insisted on,  they will create a framework for delivering hundreds of billions of dollars in investments for education, universal pre-K,  jobs, healthcare programs, home care, housing, clean energy and climate initiatives, The passage would mean that long overdue upgrades to human and physical infrastructure can finally begin to happen.  We have also not  given up on getting Rx price negotiations into the final package; nor will we  back down on demanding that the Medicare expansion piece include dental and vision care.  Many organizations and dozens of Congressional Democrats, not a single Republican it should be noted, have joined together to save Medicare expansion (see below.)   


    Thanks for keeping the faith and for rallying, texting, phone banking and volunteering to win the transformative change we need.


    In Solidarity,

    The Progressive Maryland Team


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  • Progressive Maryland Weekly Memo for Monday, October 25, 2021

    CampaignMiscImage_1594309709.6756.pngWe can build a better Maryland with grassroots supporters like you! We need to push local, state and federal officials to address the investments we need in our communities and to make positive changes to our social and economic systems. We’ll all do better when our public policies put people first.  That’s what the Build Back Better Act  does and  why we’re laser focused on getting it across the finish line in Congress. This Thursday we’re hosting a Town Hall conversation with Senator Van Hollen to discuss the impact of BBB on Maryland and our nation. Our national affiliate People’s Action is supporting this timely event, too, and has been helping to lead the fight to expand Medicare, lower child care and housing costs, reduce prescription drug costs and to invest in green jobs and solutions to the climate crisis, all of which are currently contained in the Build Back Better Act.

     So we need to keep the pressure on!


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M.A. and Ph.d. from University of Maryland Merrill College of Journalism, would-be radical, sci-fi fan... retired to a life of keyboard radicalism...
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