LIST OF ISSUES
Medicare For All
In 2018 we entered into the costliest period for healthcare in our history, a burden that is paid for by the American people. Costs that are inflated by unnecessary administration fees, insurance companies dictating our healthcare, and substandard care that exacerbates medical issues down the road for Americans. Our healthcare costs are nearly double that of other Western countries around the world. Despite the large bill that has already been placed upon the American people, over 30M Americans are uninsured, and of those that are insured, almost half are underinsured. Americans are paying a high cost for substandard coverage. It is time politicians ensure the quality of health care is matching the cost of the healthcare - bolstering the idea that healthcare is a human right, not a luxury, for the so many who have gone without. Medicare for All must be a top priority in Congress.
Student loan debt grips 45M Americans which only grows in number each year. In Maryland; every 1 in 5 adults is saddled with student loan debt. Maryland has the second-highest debt per borrower ratio in the nation only behind Washington D.C. This is a crisis that not only affects the students but every American. Parents own a significant portion of the loan debt owed for an education, all in the pursuit of a better education for their children. Student loan debt is also one of the top reasons quoted for preventing young adults from entering the housing market. We must act now to help relieve the pressure of student debt, and forgive them for our borrowers. Ensuring that no American is punished for seeking a better life.
To ensure we do not face a debt crisis again in the future we must address the rising costs of trade schools and college. Since the 1980’s the cost of a better education has risen by 1200%. Studies have shown that the rising costs can be attributed to the cuts to educational funding and that Americans are primarily using loans to pay for their education. The current system is not sustainable for future generations. We must reverse course and increase education funding across the boards while no longer strapping generations with debt. We must ensure that those attending trade schools and college will be fully funded when they seek their higher education.
Climate change is going to impact everyone, especially a coastal state like Maryland. Maryland has close to 3,200 miles of coastline which makes us one of the most vulnerable states in the country. With rising temperatures comes rising sea levels, wetter winters, and drier summers. Rising sea levels threaten our shorelines, wetlands, marshes, and natural landmarks while also bringing the threat of salt infiltration to our fresh water supply. Extreme weather events will increase in frequency bringing more flooding during wet seasons, and drier lands during the summers. The changes to our environment not only effect our landscape but threatens the way of life we have all become accustomed to; especially Maryland traditions so dear to us all. More acidic waters threaten the younger stages and growth of our beloved Blue Crabs. Rising waters will negatively affect their nursing grounds that are needed for early development. Our agricultural lands will be drier and saltier leading to fewer crop yields. The upkeep of our infrastructure will increase. Maryland’s delegation simply cannot afford to not be the leading voices to reduce our impact we have on climate change, and lead us to a more sustainable and greener future. We must act now implementing the Green New Deal.
Organized labor has been the backbone of the working class since the late 19th and early 20th century. They have helped create the middle class and strengthen the American dream we have all strived for. Unionized members have always been afforded better wages in their respective sectors against those who are non-unionized. Yet, unions have seen a steady decline across the board for the past four decades in our country, and inversely the wealth gap has increased across America. As productivity increases the wages must match them, and the strongest tool employees have on their side is collective bargaining. We must grow existing labor unions in the sectors they already exist, and in the same manner bring unions to areas they have not been historically present. Americans must no longer rely on political movements to provide the standard of living they have strived for. They must be ensured that their hard work is fairly compensated without worry.
Throughout our country, we need to strengthen the minimum wage for all of our workers. Not only does the minimum wage need to be raised to match the inflation the dollar has seen since the 1980s, but it must be removed from the grips of our politicians. We need to relate minimum wages to the average wage of a market, the effects inflation has had on the dollar and the cost of living for an area. Americans must no longer need rely on politicians keeping the minimum wage relevant.