July 30, 2020
Census Door Knocking Cut A Month Short Amid Pressure To Finish Count
Hansi Lo Wang, NPR
The Census Bureau is cutting short critical door-knocking efforts for the 2020 census amid growing concerns among Democrats in Congress that the White House is pressuring the bureau to wrap up counting soon for political gain, NPR has learned.
Asked by Rep. John Sarbanes, D-Md., if he was aware that the Trump administration reportedly wants to wrap up counting quickly so that the president can receive the census apportionment numbers by the end of the year, Dillingham replied: "I'm not aware of all the many reasons except to say that the Census Bureau and others really want us to proceed as rapidly as possible."
In the News: Trump’s pitch to delay election is ‘absurd,’ suggests he could try to hold job if he loses, Maryland Dems say
July 30, 2020
Trump’s pitch to delay election is ‘absurd,’ suggests he could try to hold job if he loses, Maryland Dems say
Jeff Barker, The Baltimore Sun
President Donald Trump’s pitch to delay the Nov. 3 presidential election “reeks of desperation” and is an ill-conceived attempt to smear the sort of mail-in voting that Maryland employed in its June primary, Democratic members of the state’s congressional delegation said Thursday.
Trump should “cease his attempts to delegitimize mailed ballots and stop sowing discord over the integrity of our elections,” said Rep. John Sarbanes, a Baltimore County Democrat.
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July 16, 2020
FIREFIGHTERS RECEIVE $400,000 IN FEDERAL FUNDING
SUZANNE POLLAK, Montgomery Community Media
Maryland’s federal legislators announced July 16 the awarding of almost $400,000 for firefighters in Montgomery County to continue purchasing personal protective equipment.
Montgomery County will receive $357,800 and the Bethesda-Chevy Chase Rescue Squad will receive $45,780 through the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Assistance to Firefighters – COVID-19 Supplemental program.
July 10, 2020
Maryland Congressional Democrats Question Gov. Hogan's Election Day Plan
Tyler Waldman, WBAL (Online)
The nine Democrats in Maryland's 10-member congressional delegation sent a letter to Gov. Larry Hogan on Thursday expressing worry over his latest plans for Election Day.
This week, Hogan said he intends for all polling places to be open and asked the Maryland State Board of Elections that all eligible voters be sent an application for an absentee ballot.
In the News: Baltimore Area Gets More Than $450K To Help Minority, Women-Owned Businesses, Lawmakers Announce
June 28, 2020
Baltimore Area Gets More Than $450K To Help Minority, Women-Owned Businesses, Lawmakers Announce
June 19, 2020
Md. Democrats Back Reconciliation Commission to Address, Heal Racism
Daniel C. Vock, Maryland Matters
June 17, 2020
Rep. John Sarbanes (D-MD) on the GOP Police Reform and COVID-19 Response
Sirius XM (‘POTUS Press Pool with Julie Mason’)
In the News: Maryland congressional leaders urge Gov. Larry Hogan to make more improvements to unemployment website
June 10, 2020
Maryland congressional leaders urge Gov. Larry Hogan to make more improvements to unemployment website
Mckenna Oxenden, The Baltimore Sun
Maryland congressional leaders are urging Gov. Larry Hogan to make more improvements to the state’s new Beacon One-Stop unemployment benefits website because they say constituents are not receiving their benefits in a timely manner.
U.S. Sens. Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen wrote a letter to the Republican governor Tuesday, saying they hear from constituents “every day” who continue to encounter problems that are “far from resolved.” U.S. Reps. Steny Hoyer, C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger, John Sarbanes, Kweisi Mfume, Andy Harris, Anthony Brown, Jamie Raskin and David Trone also signed the letter, saying that some of the problems include errors processing weekly certifications, performance issues with the state’s new Beacon One-Stop unemployment benefits website and inaccurate denials of benefits.
June 9, 2020
"DEMOCRACY, POLICING, AND VIRUS VOTING"
Barbara R. Arnwine, Esq., WOL-AM (Igniting Change Radio)
On Tuesday, June 9th, 2020, 12:00-1:00 PM Eastern Time, Host Barbara R. Arnwine, Esq. founder and president of the Transformative Justice Coalition (TJC), and her Co-Host Daryl D. Jones, Esq., TJC Board Chair and Henault & Sysko Chartered Partner, conducted a special interview with Congressman John Sarbanes (D-3 MD), who represents Baltimore, Anne Arundel, Howard and Montgomery Counties, to discuss major developments in the U.S. Congress affecting American democracy, policing, and the right to vote. They also briefly covered the states holding primaries and special elections on June 9th, and the voting problems being experienced, especially and as represented by Georgia with an interview with Tricia “CK” Hoffler, incoming president of the National Bar Association and Chair of the Board of the Rainbow PUSH Coalition.
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June 8, 2020
Md. Dems Sponsor New Congressional Legislation for Police Reforms
Robin Bravender, Maryland Matters
Congressional Democrats outlined their vision for sweeping police reforms on Capitol Hill Monday, following weeks of nationwide protests sparked by the killing of George Floyd in Minnesota.
“Never again should the world be subjected to witnessing what we saw on the streets of Minneapolis: the slow murder of an individual by a uniformed police officer,” said Rep. Karen Bass, a California Democrat and the leader of the Congressional Black Caucus, at a news conference announcing the effort.
June 5, 2020
Senator holds up Trump nominations until he gets answers on fired IG’s
Eric White, Federal News Network
June 2, 2020
Governors Warn Congress More Federal Help Is Needed to Avoid COVID-19 Resurgence
Allison Winter, Maryland Matters
The federal government needs to assist states with a national strategy for distribution of COVID-19 tests and medical equipment or risk a second surge of the disease, Democratic governors told lawmakers Tuesday on Capitol Hill.
Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and Colorado Gov. Jared Polis asked Congress for more federal help as states try to track and monitor the disease and brace for its confluence with the flu and cold season next fall.
May 28, 2020
$8M federal grant to help reduce bottlenecks for Baltimore train commuters
Ethan McLeod, Baltimore Business Journal
A project to increase speeds for Amtrak and MARC trains currently slowed by aging rail infrastructure in Baltimore is getting a boost from an $8 million Federal Railroad Administration grant.
The money, announced Wednesday by the agency, will help to rehabilitate and upgrade a five-mile section of Amtrak's Northeast Corridor and allow trains to travel 50% faster, up from 60 mph to 90 mph. The improvements will take place between the north end of West Baltimore Station to Winans at the southern end of Halethorpe station, which serves both MARC and Amtrak trains.
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In the News: Rep. Sarbanes says Bright testimony ‘adds up to one inescapable conclusion: It didn’t have to be this way.’
May 22, 2020
Rep. Sarbanes says Bright testimony ‘adds up to one inescapable conclusion: It didn’t have to be this way.’
John Wagner, Felicia Sonmez, Kim Bellware, Mark Berman, Adam Taylor, Steven Goff, Kareem Copeland, Michael Brice-Saddler, Teo Armus and Antonia Noori Farzan, The Washington Post
Rep. John Sarbanes (D-Md.) asked Richard Bright when he knew with certainly there was a problem with the Trump administration’s response to the coronavirus pandemic:
“Tell me about just one specific moment when you had that sinking feeling in the pit of your stomach because you were not seeing the response you knew needed to happen,” Sarbanes asked at Thursday’s House subcommittee hearing.
May 18, 2020
Voter guide: John Sarbanes, Congress, District 3
The Baltimore Sun
Why are you running for office?
I am running, as always, to serve the needs of my constituents. In this moment, that means being a steady and trusted voice as we navigate the ferocious challenge of the coronavirus pandemic. On the policy front, I will bring my background in the health field – seventeen years representing health care providers in Maryland – to inform our deliberations in Congress on how to address this public health crisis. Along side the full-court press on public health, I will continue my work to strengthen our democracy by ending the influence of big money in politics, protecting the right to vote and ensuring that public officials work for the public interest. To make progress on the most pressing issues we face – including designing a health care system that serves everyone -- we need a government that responds to the many, not the money.
May 17, 2020
Rep. Sarbanes proposes help amid coronavirus crisis
Jason Newton, WBAL-TV (NBC)
Our economy has taken a historic hit because of the coronavirus crisis, and leaders are working to keep Americans safe and help them get back on their feet. Maryland U.S. Rep. John Sarbanes, District 3, shares what he has proposed in Congress.
May 15, 2020
Rick Bright and the Pandemic Path Not Taken
Amy Davidson Sorkin, The New Yorker
Many Americans are replaying, in their minds, the steps they have taken and the choices they have made with regard to the coronavirus crisis, but perhaps few with such tragic force as Rick Bright, who testified in a House hearing on Thursday. Bright, who in April was transferred from his position as the head of the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, which is part of the Department of Health and Human Services, had caused a “commotion,” as one colleague put it, by urging more action at pandemic-planning meetings as far back as January and February. At the hearing, Representative John Sarbanes, a Democrat of Maryland, who had a pewter-gray mask around his neck—the members lowered their masks when speaking or, in some cases, when seated—asked Bright to return to that period. “I am sure that there are specific conversations, e-mails, moments in time that you remember like they happened yesterday,” Sarbanes said. Could he recall any particularly haunting ones that had caused a “sinking feeling in the pit of your stomach?”
May 14, 2020
Lives Were Lost’ as Warnings Went Unheeded, Whistle-Blower Tells House
Sheryl Gay Stolberg, The New York Times
The whistle-blower who was ousted as the head of a federal medical research agency charged on Thursday that top Trump administration officials failed to heed his early warnings to stock up on masks and other supplies to combat the coronavirus, and that Americans died as a result.... Democrats painted Dr. Bright as a prescient man of courage. “It all adds up to one inescapable conclusion: It didn’t have to be this way,” said Representative John Sarbanes, Democrat of Maryland. “Things are upside down. In you we have someone who made the right call in the early days, who has been removed from your position, when so many people who made the wrong call still have their jobs.”
May 13, 2020
Republicans and Democrats barrel toward collision on voting by mail
Zach Montellaro, POLITICO
Americans want to be able to vote by mail in November — but Democratic proposals to require it appear to be going nowhere fast in Congress.... Democrats argue that the public widely supports their proposals — and that the election security grant funding mechanism included in the HEROES Act is of critical importance. “On balance, [voters] think voting by mail is a good idea, and that we ought to expand that opportunity. They also, based on preference or access or other factors, want to make sure that there’s going to be some meaningful in-person voting opportunities,” said Rep. John Sarbanes (D-Md.), who helped shepherd H.R. 1 through the House last year. Sarbanes and other Democrats also said all forms of voting need to be available in November. Those include "expanded vote by mail, significant early voting opportunities, and then safe in-person voting opportunities on Election Day," he said. "We need all three of those things.”
In the News: Democrats push to strengthen stimulus oversight in next round of coronavirus legislation
May 12, 2020
Democrats push to strengthen stimulus oversight in next round of coronavirus legislation
Benjamin Siegel, ABC News
A group of House and Senate Democrats seeking stronger oversight of the massive coronavirus relief programs is introducing a new bill to force companies to publicly report how they're using the funds, and to beef up the oversight of the small business aid program. Introduced by Sens. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., Chris Coons, D-Del., and Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., the proposal would strengthen some of the key watchdog provisions in the original $2.3 trillion CARES Act, according to a review of the bill obtained by ABC News.... The proposal, which is being introduced by Reps. John Sarbanes, D-Md., and Pramila Jayapal D-Wash., in the House, would also codify the Federal Reserve's plans to release the names and amounts borrowed in their coronavirus lending programs and require borrowers to share how the funds are being used, along with information about compensation and their workforce -- such as executive salaries and bonuses.