Monday, November 5, 2018

Voting Day Is Here!

Voting Hours:  7 AM to 8 PM
This is the day I've been waiting for since Election Day 2016.  It is the time for us to change the direction of our country and our state.  Too many people stayed home in 2016 and the results have been disastrous.  Everybody should come to vote.

My Recommendations
Some people have asked who I am going to vote for and what I think about some of the ballot initiatives.  I am not going to list every office because some of the candidates are unopposed, or do not have much opposition.

These are races I do feel very strongly about:

Governor/ Lt Governor – Ben Jealous and Susan Turnbull

I supported Ben Jealous in the Democratic Primary and continue to support him.
His platform for moving Maryland forward is consistent with what I believe, including:
                $15 minimum wage
                Universal Health Care/Medicare-for –All
                Universal Pre-K Education
                Criminal Justice Reform

(You can see his complete platform at:

A number of people have told me that they don’t think Larry Hogan is a bad guy, and think that he works in a bi-partisan manner and deserves to be re-elected.  Having served in the legislature, I really have to disagree.  Hogan is a highly partisan politician who did the following:

1.            Vetoed Paid Sick Days for Workers
2.            Vetoed Increasing Renewable Energy in Maryland
3.            Vetoed Restoring Voting Rights to Residents Leaving Prison
4.            Vetoed a Bill to Decriminalize Marijuana
5.            Vetoed a Bill to Help Halt Deportations of Immigrants over Minor Offenses
6.            Vetoed Giving Parents & Teachers a Role in Education
7.            Vetoed a Bill to Stop Police from Taking Your Money When You Haven't Committed a Crime
8.            Delayed Tougher Water Pollution Rules for Coal Plants, After Trying to Postpone Them Indefinitely
9.            Called Removal of Additional Confederate Monuments Political Correctness "Run Amok"
10.          Vetoed Ban-the-Box Legislation (important  legislation that was passed over his veto, preventing discrimination in college applications - previously, when you applied to a college in Maryland, you could be required to give information about whether you’d ever been convicted of any offense, however minor)
11.          Refused to fund the Red Line transportation project in Baltimore
12.          Did not fund Prince George’s Hospital

I believe if Hogan is re-elected he will become more conservative and less bi-partisan as he tries to move up in the Republican Party – and when he no longer needs to make himself attractive to Maryland Democratic voters.  If we want to move Maryland in a more progressive direction and help Prince George’s County we need to elect Ben Jealous Governor.

Attorney General – Brian Frosh

I believe Brian Frosh is the best Attorney General our state has ever had.  He is a tireless advocate for consumer rights and has taken the initiative to sue President Trump when his policies have hurt Maryland residents.

State Senate District 47 – Malcolm Augustine

I have known Malcolm for six years.  He is a hard worker who has shown me his commitment to serving our community.  For the last five years he has been to every municipal council meeting, civic association meeting and community event.  He has earned my support and I think he will make an effective responsive State Senator.

(Dina Fennell, and Julian Ivey are running for State Delegate in District 47A unopposed.)

Board of Education District 3 - Pamela Boozer-Strother

(Mount Rainier, Brentwood, N. Brentwood, Avondale/Woodridge, Chillum, Hyattsville, University Park)

Pamela lives in Brentwood.  I have known her for over twelve years and worked with her on the Gateway Community Development Corporation and in the Mount Rainier/Brentwood Community.  She is hard working and conscientious.  She brings the perspective of a parent, an activist in the local PTA and a home owner.  Since so much of the state budget goes to education, I believe it is important that someone who knows how difficult it is to pay property taxes will make sure that the money is spent well.  Her program includes building new schools in our area that have smaller class sizes, paying educators fairly, and expanding the arts and language programs in all the schools.  She was endorsed by the Washington Post.

Ballot Questions 

I will be voting YES on all these questions.  Here is some of my reasoning:

Question 1 – Constitutional Amendment Requiring Gaming Revenues to Supplement Spending for Education – YES

When casinos were approved in Maryland the money was supposed to be used for education spending.  While technically this money has been used for education, it has not added to education funding as intended, because money that was previously dedicated for education was then used for other purposes.  This Constitutional Amendment would guarantee that all casino moneys would be used to supplement moneys that are already placed in the budget as a result of the spending formulas that are part of the Bridge of Excellence Act passed in 2002.

Question 2 – Same-Day Registration on Election Day – YES

This Constitutional Amendment will allow people to register and vote on Election Day.  Right now people can register during Early Voting but not on Election Day.  Across the country, Republicans are working hard to suppress the vote. Anything we can do to encourage people to vote and increase citizen participation is a good, democratic thing.

County Referendums A- E:  Charter Amendments to Allow the County to Borrow Money by Issuing Bonds - YES

While county and municipal budgets are used for operating expenditures, bonds are normally needed to fund capital construction costs – in the case of these bonds,  for new and rehabilitated facilities for Public Works and Transportation, the County Library System, Public Safety, County Building, and Prince George’s Community College.  I use the analogy with buying a home or doing a major renovation.   Most of us don’t have cash to pay for a house or even a new kitchen, so we take out a loan from the bank, normally in the form of a mortgage or re-financing loan on the equity in our home.  In the same way, local jurisdictions (who have to balance their budgets) have to borrow money for capital improvements (i.e., construction projects) and then pay off the projects over a number of years (similar to a mortgage).

County Charter Amendments F – K
Recommendations from the Charter Review Commission - YES

I honestly do not know much about these amendments, but I looked through them and do not see anything controversial with them.  They are all recommendations from the County Review Commission.  You can read all the recommendations here: . (The specific pages for each amendment are discussed on pages 3-6.)

League of Women Voters Voting Guide

The league publishes a very detailed guide with candidate biographies and responses to questions as well as details about each of the ballot initiatives and a list of the projects planned for each of the bond bills that have been proposed.

 You should check it out at:

If you have any questions or comments about any of the candidates or issues, please send me an email at and I will respond.