- I propose that the Committee develop a network of block captains to serve as the foundation of the local Party.
- The Committee should empower existing area coordinators and precinct officials to recruit and support block captains and other activists.
- I will lead community-based policy dialogues to engage Democrats on substantive issues and develop a clear and compelling party agenda.
- With a grassroots-focused organizing strategy, the Central Committee can play a more powerful role in motivating citizens to vote and become actively engaged in local issues and political campaigns.
- The Committee has the extraordinary power to select members of the General Assembly when vacancies occur, as recommendations to the governor. I applaud the Committee for endorsing legislation to hold special elections instead. Until special elections are enacted we must ensure that the Committee exercises its authority transparently and responsibly.
- Energizing MoCo Democrats will improve local governance and make the difference in electing progressive Democrats in local and state-wide offices.
My Policy Agenda
A major objective of my campaign is to show that the climate crisis can be addressed locally. I love how Congressman Jamie Raskin frames its importance and cross-cutting nature: “Climate change isn’t just an issue,” Rep. Raskin said at his campaign kickoff announcement in 2016. “It is the entire context in which we have to make all our public policy decisions.” Click for more on Climate Change.
Economy & JOBS
There is tremendous inequality in Montgomery County. Ranked by median household income, 2012-2016, MoCo is the 14th richest county in the United States. Yet 7% of residents live below the poverty line and many more struggle to make ends meet. Click for more on Economy & Jobs.
The public school system is perhaps our most valuable asset and best example of the value of local government and taxes put to good use. Approximately half the County budget, about $2.5 billion in 2018, goes to Montgomery County Public Schools, which with 162,000 students is the largest school system in Maryland. 35% of public school students (K-12) are in the Free and Reduced-price Meals System, generally meaning they are in poverty. Click for more on Education.
We cannot take basic environmental quality for granted. Montgomery County is not necessarily immune from the type of catastrophe that devastated Flint, Michigan. Democrats should promote improved access to public information on air and water quality and enforce the highest environmental and public health standards. Click for more on Environment.
Governance and Reform
Our public schools are excellent, crime is relatively low, and we have reasonable social services. However, there is much room for improvement and there are serious problems such as an excessive emphasis on roads as opposed to mass transit and the challenge of having our schools and other public services keep up with population growth. Increased civic participation and transparency, and reducing the influence of money in electoral campaigns, are the best ways to improve governance. Click for more on Governance and Reform.
I will lead an effort to make tax reform a top priority. The Democratic Party needs to advance clear proposals for a progressive tax code. Too many Democratic officials talk about inequality and promise to expand public services but fail to support specific tax reform measures because they are afraid of alienating wealthy donors. Click for more on Taxes.