U.S. Congress, District 3, Democrats

Democrats (pick one)

 

Joseph C. Ardito

Where you live: Baltimore City

Date of birth: 6/14/81

Current occupation and employer (may also list up to two previous jobs you’ve held); if retired, list your last job and employer: Attorney

Political experience (public offices held and when, as well as unsuccessful campaigns for office and which years; do not include political party positions): This is my first time running for public office

Campaign information:

1 – Why are you running for this office? (75 words max)
I am running for Maryland’s 3rd congressional district because we deserve engaged, passionate, and enthusiastic representation in Congress. I also believe strongly in term limits and seven terms is enough. Our system must provide opportunities for regular people who are not part of a political family, and lack financial resources, to become involved in this country’s governance. You can call or email me directly to talk about the issues that matter most to you.

2 – What is the most important issue in this race and what specific plans do you have to address it? (100 words max)
The most important issue with respect to *this* race is a change to active, engaged, and passionate representation from a new, energized representative who is accessible. This will be accomplished by opening district offices and providing direct access to our new representative through community dinners, social media, and being able to text, call, or email them directly. The most important substantive issue we face is protecting our environment and ensuring Maryland’s natural resources, specifically the Chesapeake Bay, are protected from pollution and destruction. We must protect Maryland’s environment and natural spaces through stronger anti-dumping legislation and conservation easements.

3 – What is one major issue the current Congress has handled poorly and what would you have done differently? (100 words max)
The current Congress has handled more issues poorly than can be explained in 100 words. Election security, immigration, health care, climate change/environmental justice, gun safety, infrastructure, protecting vulnerable populations, criminal justice reform, financial justice, addressing income inequality, raising the federal minimum wage, failing to punish Russia for its continued interference in our democracy. How do you pick just one? The federal minimum wage ($7.25/hour) hasn’t been raised since 2009, which is indefensible. Research shows that even slightly higher wages reduces the rates of suicide and crime. Increasing the federal minimum wage will have far-reaching, positive effects.

4 – What changes, if any, would you make to the U.S. health care system? (100 words max)
We must either protect and continue to improve the Affordable Care Act by adding a public option and trying harder to make it work for all Americans, or we must have Medicare available to all of us. The current health care system in this country is an abomination. Its complexity and corrupt, profit-driven private insurance company-benefitting model, at the expense of human life, is criminal and must end. Getting sick and going bankrupt (or worrying whether you can pay your rent or mortgage, buy groceries, afford child care, or continue your education) should not happen in this country.

5 – What experience (work, political or other) has prepared you to hold this office? (100 words max)
I was taught to care about and advocate passionately for other people, particularly those whose own advocacy is hampered by a lack of access to resources and decision-makers. This is my first time seeking public office, but I am energized by the prospect of helping people live happier lives. My experience as an attorney has equipped me to handle multiple complex tasks simultaneously while inspiring and empowering those around me. Through reasoned analysis, I am prepared to solve problems while garnering support and seeking input from constituents and community stakeholders. I hope you’ll support me on April 28th.

 

 

John M. Rea

Did not respond

Campaign information:

 

 

John Sarbanes

Where you live: Towson

Date of birth: 5/22/62

Current occupation and employer (may also list up to two previous jobs you’ve held); if retired, list your last job and employer: Member of Congress. Previously an attorney.

Political experience (public offices held and when, as well as unsuccessful campaigns for office and which years; do not include political party positions): Member of Congress representing Maryland’s 3rd Congressional District since 2007.

Campaign information:

1 – Why are you running for this office? (75 words max)
I am running to clean up Washington and restore faith in our democracy by advancing H.R. 1, a historic anti-corruption and clean elections bill that I authored to end the influence of big money in politics, protect the right to vote and ensure that public officials work for the public interest. When our government puts the priorities of the American people first, we can make progress on the issues that Americans care about most.

2 – What is the most important issue in this race and what specific plans do you have to address it? (100 words max)
Every major issue we face — whether it’s protecting the Bay or reducing prescription drug costs — is distorted by well-connected special interests, who block progress at every turn. If we can reduce the undue influence of wealthy donors and corporate special interests, then we can deliver on the kind of positive and empowering change that the American people want to see. That’s why I authored H.R. 1, the For the People Act — a transformative anti-corruption bill that will reduce political money in our politics, protect and expand the right to vote and strengthen ethics laws for public servants.

3 – What is one major issue the current Congress has handled poorly and what would you have done differently? (100 words max)
Since assuming the majority, House Democrats have passed bills to clean up corruption in Washington; protect elections; reduce prescription drug costs; combat climate change; reduce gun violence; expand civil rights for LGBTQ individuals; ensure equal pay for equal work; protect DREAMers; and strengthen workers’ rights. Unfortunately, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Senate Republicans have blocked all of these widely supported bills — many of which are bipartisan. McConnell won’t even bring up bipartisan legislation to secure our election systems from foreign interference. Blockading the priorities of the American people is no way to run Congress or serve the public.

4 – What changes, if any, would you make to the U.S. health care system? (100 words max)
The ACA significantly improved our health care system, but there’s more we can do. We should stop the Trump administration and Congressional Republicans from continuing to sabotage America’s health care system. The Senate should also immediately pass H.R. 3, the Elijah E. Cummings Lower Drug Costs Now Act, to lower prescription drug prices for all Americans and expand health care benefits for seniors. Expanding coverage under the ACA to include a public option is critical, but ultimately the best solution is a single-payer system that will eliminate costly overhead and rein in the profiteering of the private health insurance industry.

5 – What experience (work, political or other) has prepared you to hold this office? (100 words max)
Before coming to Congress, I worked with health care providers to improve care for Marylanders; I spent time at the Maryland State Department of Education to strengthen our public schools; and I worked with the Public Justice Center to protect consumers, employees and tenants. In Congress, I’ve seen — time and again — how political money corrupts public policy in Washington. And I’ve advanced historic solutions to fix it. Throughout my career, I have worked to make life better for all Marylanders — in every community. That’s the experience I draw upon to serve Marylanders in the Third District.