News

  • In the News: Citizens United decision weathers 10 years of controversy

    Citizens United decision weathers 10 years of controversy
    Alex Gangitano, The Hill

    A decade after the Supreme Court's landmark Citizens United decision, which ushered in the era of super PACs and unlimited donations, the fight over the contentious ruling shows no signs of easing.

    The case upended the campaign finance system, after the justices in a 5-4 ruling authored by Justice Anthony Kennedy on Jan. 21, 2010 found that restrictions on corporate campaign spending violated free speech. 

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  • In the News: Lawmakers: The US cannot afford another 10 years of Citizens United

    Lawmakers: The US cannot afford another 10 years of Citizens United
    Tom Udall and John Sarbanes, CNN (Op-Ed)

    Ten years ago, the Supreme Court's decision in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission unleashed a torrent of outside spending by corporations and wealthy donors who seized the opportunity to buy unlimited influence in Washington. The decision exponentially increased the amount of money in our politics and emboldened foreign actors to corrupt our elections. Our democracy has paid a heavy price.

    Since the Citizens United decision, just 10 individuals have injected more than $1.2 billion into our elections, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. Secret money groups have poured $963 million into ads without telling voters who paid for them. And Americans have no way of knowing how much foreign money has infiltrated our elections.

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  • In the News: ‘Your Voice’ Interview on Impeachment and Citizens United Anniversary

    ‘Your Voice’ Interview on Impeachment and Citizens United Anniversary
    WBFF-TV (FOX)

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  • In the News: Tree Planting Bill Dropped

    Tree Planting Bill Dropped
    Kelsey Tamborrino, POLITICO (‘Morning Energy’)

    A bipartisan trio of Reps. Doris Matsui, John Sarbanes and Jeff Fortenberry is introducing legislation today creating an Energy Department grant program to enable residential consumers to get free or discounted tree-planting services. "By creating a competitive tree-planting grant program, we can empower communities to improve green space, reduce consumer costs, and help fight climate change — a win-win-win," Matsui said in a statement.

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  • In the News: Maryland legislators, faith leaders back funding increase in wake of religious hate crimes

    Maryland legislators, faith leaders back funding increase in wake of religious hate crimes
    Jonathan Pitts, The Baltimore Sun

    Government funding for the protection of synagogues, mosques and churches has been on the rise in Maryland and across the United States in the past half-decade and more, but legislators and faith leaders are calling for a vast increase in such funding as threats against religious institutions persist.

    Maryland’s U.S. senators, Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen, U.S. Rep. John Sarbanes, and Jewish, Christian and Muslim leaders were among those who gathered Monday at Baltimore Hebrew Congregation in Pikesville to back a proposal calling for a quadrupling of funding provided by the federal Nonprofit Security Grant Program, to $360 million in fiscal year 2021.

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  • In the News: Maryland lawmakers call for more protection for places of worship

    LIVE: Maryland lawmakers call for more protection for places of worship
    Tiffany Watson, WBFF-TV (Online)

    On Monday at 10:30 am, U.S. Senator Chris Van Hollen, Senator Ben Cardin and Congressman John Sarbanes will be joined by leaders of the Jewish, Muslim, and Christian communities in Baltimore to stand united against religious intolerance, hate, and antisemitism.

    The Senators will announce their support for a new proposal to quadruple funding for the federal Nonprofit Security Grant Program, which provides security assistance to religious and community nonprofit institutions that are at high risk of terrorist attack.

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  • In the News: Only about 30% surveyed agree workplace harassment issues at Maryland legislature resolved fairly, quickly

    Only about 30% surveyed agree workplace harassment issues at Maryland legislature resolved fairly, quickly
    Brian Witte, The Baltimore Sun

    A first-of-its kind workplace climate survey in Maryland’s legislature found a high level of awareness about policies regarding harassment and discrimination and how to report it, but less confidence in how complaints are resolved and whether they result in fair outcomes, the survey released Friday said.

    The survey included lawmakers in both the House and Senate, as well as staff members, employees at the Department of Legislative Services and lobbyists.

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  • In the News: Howard residents voice concern over rising costs at first forum for Prescription Drug Affordability Board

    Howard residents voice concern over rising costs at first forum for Prescription Drug Affordability Board
    Ana Faguy, The Baltimore Sun

    Howard County hosted a forum Monday afternoon to get community input on the rising cost of prescription drugs.

    It was the first in a series of listening forums planned across Maryland to bring personal stories to the state Prescription Drug Affordability Board. The Prescription Drug Affordability Board Act was signed into law last May, creating a five-person board to look into what can be done at the local and state level to reduce drug costs.

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  • In the News: Maryland Politicians React to Trump Impeachment

    Maryland Politicians React to Trump Impeachment
    Evan Greenberg, Baltimore Magazine

    Rep. John Sarbanes said Wednesday that Democrats are largely united behind the two articles of impeachment announced Tuesday.

    In one of the more poignant moments of the final day of the House of Representatives’ impeachment proceedings against President Donald Trump, Baltimore was front and center.

     

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  • In the News: ‘We did all we could, Elijah’: After Trump impeachment, Pelosi references late Rep. Cummings

    ‘We did all we could, Elijah’: After Trump impeachment, Pelosi references late Rep. Cummings
    Jeff Barker, The Baltimore Sun

    Maryland lawmakers in Washington described as “sobering” a historic day that began with a House clerk solemnly reading a resolution urging that “Donald John Trump, president of the United States” be impeached.

     

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  • In the News: Baltimore Receives Multi-Million Dollar Grant Package for Public Safety

    Baltimore Receives Multi-Million Dollar Grant Package for Public Safety
    Carolyn Conte, Baltimore Jewish Times

    In an effort to address public safety concerns, $4.6 million in public safety grants are coming from the U.S. Department of Justice to benefit Baltimore City and County, congressional delegates announced at a press conference held at the city police headquarters Monday, Dec. 16.

     

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  • In the News: Baltimore Congressional Delegation Announces Nearly $750K For Veterans’ Housing

    Baltimore Congressional Delegation Announces Nearly $750K For Veterans’ Housing
    WJZ-TV (Online)

    U.S. Senators Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen, and Congressman Dutch Ruppersberger and John Sarbanes announced Wednesday the award of $748,976 for Baltimore’s Public Housing Agencies through the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing program.

     

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  • In the News: More Than $4.5M Coming To Baltimore To Help Drive Down Crime

    More Than $4.5M Coming To Baltimore To Help Drive Down Crime
    WJZ-TV (CBS)

     

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  • In the News: Officials tout $4.6M in public safety grants coming to Baltimore area

    Officials tout $4.6M in public safety grants coming to Baltimore area
    Brandon Weigel, Baltimore Fishbowl

    Local elected officials gathered today to tout a $4.6 million package of federal grant funding for public safety initiatives in Baltimore and Baltimore County, saying the money will help improve community policing, tackle problems like gun violence and the opioid epidemic, and create a more fair justice system.

     

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  • In the News: Feds give Baltimore area $4.6M for public safety initiatives

    Feds give Baltimore area $4.6M for public safety initiatives
    The Associated Press

    The city of Baltimore got a needed boost in federal funding to fight crime when Maryland's congressional delegation announced a $4.6 million package Monday of grants for public safety initiatives for the region.

     

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  • In the News: $4.6 million in grant funds will go to fight crime in Baltimore City and Baltimore County

    $4.6 million in grant funds will go to fight crime in Baltimore City and Baltimore County
    Jessica Anderson, The Baltimore Sun

    Baltimore City and Baltimore County will receive $4.6 million in federal funding that is designed to help identify owners of guns used in violent crimes, provide services to children affected by the opioid crisis, fund body-worn cameras for police and serve other criminal justice needs.

     

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  • In the News: Eyeing 2020, House passes bill named after Elijah Cummings that would empower Medicare to negotiate drug costs

    Eyeing 2020, House passes bill named after Elijah Cummings that would empower Medicare to negotiate drug costs
    Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar, The Associated Press

    Sharpening their 2020 election message, House Democrats on Thursday pushed through legislation that would empower Medicare to negotiate prescription drug prices and offer new benefits for seniors.

     

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  • In the News: House Passes Pelosi Drug-Pricing Bill

    House Passes Pelosi Drug-Pricing Bill
    Jack O'Brien, HealthLeaders Media

    The House of Representatives passed the Elijah E. Cummings Lower Drug Costs Now Act Thursday afternoon.

     

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  • In the News: This is the silent political revolution of 2020

    This is the silent political revolution of 2020
    Lawrence Lessig, CNN (Opinion)

    As the Democratic Primary kicks into high gear, it is increasingly clear that 2020 could give America a choice that it has not had since Richard Nixon resigned: An election that promises critical change to our political system. At least 7 of the remaining candidates in the Democratic primary have committed to making fundamental government reform their first priority in office. We have not been this close to real change of America's politics since the Voting Rights Act of 1965. It is therefore time that the candidates' plans -- and how they differ --become the focus of more media attention.

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  • In the News: Sarbanes: President Trump's Misconduct Can't Go Unchecked

    Sarbanes: President Trump's Misconduct Can't Go Unchecked
    Tyler Waldman, WBAL-AM

    Rep. John Sarbanes said Wednesday that Democrats are largely united behind the two articles of impeachment announced Tuesday.

    "As I think you've heard many Dems say, it's not an action that we take lightly, but I think our constitutional oath of office requires us to stand up in this way," the 3rd District Democrat told Bryan Nehman. "And if you look at the president's conduct, this idea that you would put your own personal and political fortunes ahead of the national security interests really does represent an abuse of the office of the presidency, and it's not something that we can leave unchecked."

     

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