Dem Jesse Colvin Outraises Harris in Contributions for Second Consecutive Quarter

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Democratic candidate for Maryland’s 1st Congressional District Jesse Colvin outraised Republican incumbent Representative Andy Harris in total individual contributions over the first three months of 2018.

As reported by The Washington Post on Monday, Colvin’s fundraising over the past six months has helped turn what was once thought to be a solid red district into a competitive race.

After edging Harris by 38% in total fundraising during the last three months of 2017, Mr. Colvin continued to build momentum through the first quarter of this year, outraising Harris for the second consecutive quarter in individual contributions, which represented 99% of the contributions Colvin received. Harris, meanwhile, raised 36% of his money from national PACs, including the NRA and the Koch brothers.

“We’re focused on voters, not corporate PACs,” Colvin said in a statement about the quarter’s results. “The community we’re building around this campaign is what ensures we have a real shot at flipping this seat in November — folks from all walks of life are fed up with career politicians like Andy Harris.”

Having nearly doubled the campaign’s cash on hand, Colvin is focused on engaging as many voters as possible across the district, which is geographically one of the largest in the Mid-Atlantic region.

“Winning an election requires the tireless commitment of citizens coming together for a common cause. But it also takes resources, whether that’s printing yard signs or filling my truck up with the gas it needs to get to every corner of this district.”

DCKC Meeting: ShoreRivers

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The Democratic Club of Kent County is pleased to announce that our speakers for the April 19 meeting of the club will be Isabel Hardesty, Regional Director, Chester and Sassafras, and Tim Trumbauer, Chester Riverkeeper, both of the recently formed ShoreRivers organization. ShoreRivers is a nonprofit organization working to improve the health of Eastern Shore waterways through science-based advocacy, restoration, and education.  It was created in 2017 when the Chester River Association, Midshore Riverkeeper Conservancy, and Sassafras River Association merged.For more information, visit shorerivers.org

The public is invited to attend this meeting and learn more about this new organization and about how we can all get more involved in protecting our local rivers.  The meeting takes place on the evening of Thursday, April 19, at O’Connor’s Pub, 844 High St., Chestertown – doors open at 5:30 pm for a meal and social time – main program starts at 7:00 pm.

Jesse Colvin Endorsed by Cecil County Progressive Caucus

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The Cecil County Progressive Caucus announced its endorsement of Jesse Colvin as the Democratic candidate for Congress in Maryland’s 1st Congressional District on Wednesday.

Formerly known as Cecil County for Bernie Sanders, this group got thousands registered to vote and out on Election Day in 2016. They are a major force in grassroots politics in Cecil County, and now they are committed to helping Jesse win the Democratic primary and ultimately to defeat Andy Harris.

“We don’t agree on every issue, and sometimes we take different approaches, but this remarkable group exemplifies the tent I am building to flip the 1st District,” Jesse said after receiving the group’s endorsement. “Several members of Cecil County Progressive Caucus protested at Standing Rock. Several have been in the trenches of our healthcare system for decades. Others are veterans. Still others are dedicated public school teachers.”

Here’s the text of the endorsement:

“The Cecil County Progressive Caucus is pleased to announce the group’s endorsement of Jesse Colvin, the Democratic candidate for Maryland’s First Congressional District. After meeting with three of the four Democratic Primary Congressional candidates for the First District, we found that Jesse’s platforms and attributes most closely aligned with our values and priorities. Jesse is authentic. He doesn’t act or talk like a politician — he listens and shows up. His energy and integrity are particularly compelling, and helped cement our decision. We will work tirelessly to help Jesse win the Primary and beat Andy Harris in November.”

Jesse is running for Congress because he wants to bring courage and civility back to Washington. He is focused on making the 1st District a place where his kids and grandkids want to stay. He wants to ensure folks have access to decent and affordable healthcare. He wants a comprehensive plan of attack for ending the opioid crisis, and a robust effort to generate jobs of the future across the district. He wants to be the Chesapeake Bay’s most ardent and committed champion in Congress.

Jesse served four tours as a U.S. Army Ranger in Afghanistan, and worked on investigating wrongdoing on Wall Street and as a management consultant before deciding to pursue public service. He holds a Masters from Columbia University.

Talbot Rising Endorses Michael Pullen For Congress

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Talbot Rising, a progressive, nonpartisan grassroots organization for the Eastern Shore, has announced that it is endorsing Democratic candidate Michael Pullen for the First Congressional District in Maryland to replace the incumbent, Rep. Andy Harris.

The organization, which has more than 500 members, said that Pullen will provide the kind of representation in Congress for the First District and Eastern Shore that has been missing in action for too long. We can count on the fact that he will champion the interests of the people in this district — not special interests, donors, or large corporations.

We know that he will help reform a political system that has been skewed in favor of those already at the top, with tax cuts favoring the wealthy, a rollback of regulations that protect consumers and the environment, and laws that make it harder to get reliable health care.

Talbot Rising supports the positions advanced by Pullen, including moving toward a single-payer health system, improving educational opportunities for young people, and making sure that the minimum wage is raised so that people can actually afford to live on the Eastern Shore. Pullen also embraces Talbot Rising’s commitment to help the environment and to promote renewable energy and support for companies and good jobs for residents in that industry.

Michael Pullen would also work with the congressional delegation from Maryland to ensure that budget priorities, including Chesapeake Bay restoration, receive the necessary funding. And he will work in Washington on the issues of climate change, which has made rising sea levels an especially important concern in the First District.

For many years, Pullen has been dedicated to public service, as a lawyer, public defender, and most recently as county attorney for Talbot County. Out of his concern about the political direction of our country, Pullen and his wife Connie founded Talbot Rising. In 2016 Pullen was a delegate for Sen. Bernie Sanders at the 2016 Democratic National Convention.

Upcoming Events of Democratic Club of Kent County

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The Democratic Club of Kent County is pleased to announce that our speakers for the March 15 meeting will be Dr. Karen Couch, Superintendent of the Kent County Public Schools, and Patricia McGee, President of the Board of Education of Kent County. A representative of the Support Our Schools group has also been invited.

Come and learn more about what’s happening with the county’s schools, including the many new initiatives and positive outcomes that are emerging, as well as the challenges that our system is currently facing, and how school leaders are addressing them.  Opportunities for the public to get more involved in supporting their schools will be discussed as well.

The public is invited to attend this meeting and learn more about our schools, and how we all can help. The meeting takes place on the evening of Thursday, March 15, at the Chester River Yacht and Country Club (7738 Quaker Neck Rd., Chestertown) – doors open at 5:30 pm for a meal and social time – main program starts at 7:00 pm.

For additional discussion and information about Kent County Schools from parents with KCPS children, drop by the Democratic Club of Kent County’s headquarters, 357 High St., this Saturday, March 10, 10-12 Noon. Members of Support Our Schools will be on hand to listen, discuss and inform.

For more information about SOS please check out their web site, www.kcpssos.com, and Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/groups/kentcountyschooldistrictparents/about/

In Congress, Only One Maryland Lawmaker gets NRA Money

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As congressional gun talks ramp up, advocates for stronger safety laws have called for their representatives to stop accepting campaign finance donations from the National Rifle Association.

The gun rights advocacy group has given $263,818 to candidates in the first two months of 2018 – 98 percent of that going to Republican candidates, according to an analysis by the Center for Responsive Politics (opensecrets.org), a non-partisan research group that tracks money in U.S. politics.

No Democratic lawmakers from Maryland have received any campaign contributions from gun rights or gun safety groups so far this year.

However, Rep. Andy Harris, R-Cockeysville, has received $1,975, bringing the total since his first campaign in 2008 to $25,447 in funding from the NRA. No other senator or House member from Maryland has received contributions from gun rights advocacy groups, records show.

Neither the NRA nor Harris’s office responded to media inquiries by phone or email about his campaign contributions.

On the other side of the gun debate, Sen. Chris Van Hollen, D-Maryland, has received the most money among current senators from gun safety advocates between 1989 and 2016: $105,595, according to Open Secrets data. Almost all of that came during his 2016 Senate campaign.

“This issue shouldn’t be political – it should be about doing everything we can to prevent the loss of another child, another parent,” Van Hollen said in an email to Capital News Service. “With over 90 percent of Americans saying they want something done, the GOP leadership’s refusal to consider measures that are proven to save lives is gross negligence.”

Van Hollen last year urged the National Institutes of Health to renew funding that had lapsed for firearm violence research and introduced legislation with Sen. Ed Markey, D-Massachusetts, which would have set aside $10 million each year from 2018 through 2023 for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to conduct or support research on gun violence prevention and firearms safety.

Another Maryland representative, Rep. Anthony Brown, D-Upper Marlboro, introduced bipartisan legislation Tuesday that would raise the minimum age required to purchase a semi-automatic weapon from 18 to 21.

“This common-sense bipartisan bill is a critical first step that closes a dangerous loophole in our gun laws,” Brown said in a statement.

Brown has not received any contributions from gun control groups during his career. Neither have Democratic Reps. John Delaney of Potomac, Jamie Raskin of Kensington, Dutch Ruppersberger of Timonium and John Sarbanes of Towson.

Over the course of his political career, Sen. Ben Cardin, D-Maryland, has received $2,000 in total contributions from gun control advocates; Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Baltimore, received $2,450, and House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer, D-Mechanicsville, received $2,000, according to Open Secrets.

By Jarod Golub and Julia Karron

The 1st District: Introducing Candidate Allison Galbraith

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Allison Galbraith has a straightforward answer when asked why she is running for the United States Congress from the 1st Congressional — it’s personal.

Not too long ago, Allison made arrangements to meet with Representative Andy Harris to discuss her own experience with, and advocacy for, the Affordable Care Act. She found herself rebuffed by the Congressman not only on policy but was stung by his comment during their exchange that he would have no problem with women paying more for health insurance than men.

That’s all it took forGalbraith to plunge yourself into the 1st district Democratic primary. And she has launched a campaign that addresses not only her grievances against Dr. Harris and his desire to repeal Obamacare but offers her unique perspective as a single mother struggling with keeping afloat while also having served as a caregiver for her mother.

The University of Maryland graduate, with a degree in philosophy, has spent most of her career working on federal government contracts which she believes will give her a unique advantage on how to save money in Washington. She also feels it could be one of the more striking differentials between her and her Democratic opponents as the candidates face the primary day election in June.

The Spy met up with Allison at the Bullitt House last Saturday for a quick introductory chat.

This video is approximately six minutes in length. For more information about Allison Galbraith’s campaign please go here

Election 2018: Meehan files for Kent County State’s Attorney; Opioid Crisis is Priority One

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Andrew Meehan, local attorney and Still Pond resident, has filed to run for State’s Attorney for Kent County in the Democratic primary, renewing his promise to make tackling the Opioid Crisis as Priority No. 1. Meehan was the 2014 Democratic nominee.

Andrew Meehan, candidate for State’s Attorney, with campaign treasurer Beverly Birkmire.

“While Kent County has low crime rates, heroin and other opioid abuse continue to gnaw at our community’s core,” Meehan remarked. “In the past decade, we have seen a dramatic increase in opioid abuse, often resulting in overdoses requiring heroic lifesaving efforts by law enforcement and other first responders and sometimes tragic, avoidable deaths,” Andy reflected.

“I renew my pledge to support law enforcement with strong prosecutions to send drug dealers to jail, to help addicts seek treatment, and to work with community organizations on the front lines of educating adults and youth about the risks of opioid abuse.”

“I have practiced law for 30 years representing foster children, vulnerable adults, and families affected by domestic violence,” Meehan said. “The destructive havoc of opioid addiction is a common thread in many cases.”

Meehan is a native of Alexandria, Virginia. He graduated from the University of Virginia in 1984 and earned his law degree from Washington & Lee University in 1987. He practiced in Northern Virginia and the District of Columbia before moving to Kent County in 2001. He is a trial lawyer practicing with Charles D. “Chip” MacLeod at the MacLeod Law Group in Chestertown.

His wife Mattie is a former Maryland Parole Commissioner and is currently a social worker with the Kent County Department of Social Services. They raised their three sons, Crenshaw, William, and Henry, in Still Pond. Meehan is president of the Chestertown Rotary Club, treasurer of the Kent County Bar Association, a member of St. Paul’s Parish, Kent, and has worked with other community organizations.

Beverly Birkmire will serve as Meehan’s campaign treasurer. A retired local banker and lifelong Democrat, Beverly is a board member of the Chestertown Rotary Club (past president), Foundation for the Kent County Public Library (treasurer), Kent County Department of Social Services Advisory Board, and 2018 Seminar co-chair of the American Quilt Study Group.

“I have known Andy for many years and respect him as a highly qualified and conscientious attorney, family man, and community leader,” Birkmire said. “Maryland and Kent County are caught in an Opioid Crisis and Andy is the right choice as State’s Attorney at this critical time.”

 

The 1st District: Introducing Candidate Michael Pullen

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According to Easton’s Michael Pullen, a powerful political transformation took place for him over the last few years which has turned this long-tenured public servant into a congressional candidate.

That’s the time it took for the former Talbot County Attorney to witness a time when the fundamental values he grew up with, and with which he conducted his professional life, seemed radically at odds with what can now be described as the Trump era.

In the Spy’s second installment of introducing the current candidates running for the 2018 Congressional seat for Maryland’s First District, Pullen outlines in detail the journey that led him to declare his candidacy and how his experience in the public arena has best prepared him to really “represent” the voters of the Eastern Shore.

This video is approximately five minutes in length. For more information about Pullen for the US Congress please go here