Congressman John Sarbanes

Representing the 3rd District of Maryland

In The News

August 29, 2019

Baltimore is getting some federal funding for environmental education programs. Rep. John Sarbanes announced Wednesday that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will provide $120,000 to give high school students immersive environmental education opportunities. The Parks & People Foundation and the Living Classrooms Foundation will each receive $60,000 to strengthen environmental learning programs in the city. Both organizations are Baltimore-based nonprofits. Funding for the Parks & People Foundation will support a new program for Baltimore high school students to explore and design green spaces. Funding for Living Classrooms will help students work on community service projects to reduce stormwater runoff pollution.

August 22, 2019

Sentinel Columnist Paul K. Schwartz sits down with Congressman John Sarbanes on Aug. 21, 2019 for an exclusive interview.

August 22, 2019

Democratic congressmen held an event Thursday in Rhode Island to try to pressure Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell into allowing a vote on a comprehensive elections and ethics reform package. Maryland Democratic Rep. John Sarbanes, who is the bill's main author, met with Rhode Island Rep. David Cicilline and Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse in North Providence. The influence of big money in politics is impeding efforts to address climate change, gun violence and prescription drug costs, they said. Activists working on those issues attended the event.... The legislation, called H.R. 1 to signify its importance, would make it easier to register and vote, require "dark money" political groups to make their donors public, and create a public financing system for congressional campaigns that Democrats say will cut down on corruption and reduce the power of lobbyists and other special interests.... Sarbanes, Cicilline and Whitehouse all said the reforms are crucial to making the government respond to the needs of the American people, rather than special interests and corporations, and restore the public's faith in government. Sarbanes said they're also asking voters to choose a team of reformers in 2020 and not reelect President Donald Trump, whom he called a "demagogue." "Mitch McConnell is standing at the doors of the United States Senate with his arms crossed, saying to the American people, 'You shall not pass,'" he said. "We're going to keep the pressure on him. The message to him is, if you won't put that the bill on the floor, then we're going to try to change the composition to make sure it gets to the floor. Democrats have made a promise to clean up government."

August 21, 2019

For many Americans, our electoral system can be described as "corrupt" and "undemocratic." How did the vision of a democratic republic as imagined by the Framers of the Constitution become "the best democracy money can by?" This episode of Democracy Nerd traces that evolution, looking at the past four decades of Supreme Court cases allowing unfettered "dark money" to influence national politics, the social and cultural impact of our current electoral system, and efforts currently undertaken by Congress to address the corrupting influence of money in politics. Guests include Harvard Law professor Lawrence Lessig, Congressman John Sarbanes, and Norman Williams, Dean of the Center of Constitutional Government at Willamette University.

August 20, 2019

Just one traumatic experience in childhood can permanently impact a child’s health and decision-making, studies show. In Baltimore, where there have been more than 1,500 homicides and 3,400 shooting victims since 2015, children experience trauma on a scale that some leaders say amounts to an “epidemic.” Some of the region’s leaders came together Tuesday to look at the most recent research and discuss what more can be done. U.S. Rep. Elijah Cummings organized the forum on childhood trauma at the offices of Humanim, a nonprofit that helps people with developmental disabilities and behavioral health challenges…. Dr. Leana Wen, Baltimore’s former health commissioner, moderated the event, which was attended by such Maryland officials as U.S. Sen. Chris Van Hollen, U.S. Rep. John Sarbanes, Baltimore Mayor Bernard “Jack” Young, Baltimore Schools CEO Sonja Santelises and Police Commissioner Michael Harrison, who listened to health experts and discussed ways to prevent childhood trauma and cope with it. Traumatic events such as the death or incarceration of a parent, a drug addiction or mental health issues affecting family members are considered an “adverse childhood experience,” experts explained. Just one of those experiences in childhood is associated with a heightened risk of using illicit drugs, abusing alcohol, attempting suicide, perpetrating violence and suffering from chronic diseases.

August 20, 2019

Just one traumatic experience in childhood can permanently impact a child’s health and decision-making, studies show. In Baltimore, where there have been more than 1,500 homicides and 3,400 shooting victims since 2015, children experience trauma on a scale that some leaders say amounts to an “epidemic.” Some of the region’s leaders came together Tuesday to look at the most recent research and discuss what more can be done. U.S. Rep. Elijah Cummings organized the forum on childhood trauma at the offices of Humanim, a nonprofit that helps people with developmental disabilities and behavioral health challenges…. Dr. Leana Wen, Baltimore’s former health commissioner, moderated the event, which was attended by such Maryland officials as U.S. Sen. Chris Van Hollen, U.S. Rep. John Sarbanes, Baltimore Mayor Bernard “Jack” Young, Baltimore Schools CEO Sonja Santelises and Police Commissioner Michael Harrison, who listened to health experts and discussed ways to prevent childhood trauma and cope with it. Traumatic events such as the death or incarceration of a parent, a drug addiction or mental health issues affecting family members are considered an “adverse childhood experience,” experts explained. Just one of those experiences in childhood is associated with a heightened risk of using illicit drugs, abusing alcohol, attempting suicide, perpetrating violence and suffering from chronic diseases.

August 17, 2019

Baltimore was one of dozens of cities across the country where marches and rallies demanded action against gun violence on Saturday. Gun violence has reached a boiling point in Baltimore and across the nation. There were eight fatal shootings in Baltimore this week alone. The Maryland Chapters of Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action are part of a nationwide demonstration aimed at getting the U.S. Senate to pass gun legislation.... “It is a disease that has infected every community,” said U.S. Rep. John Sarbanes (D-MD), 3rd District. The U.S. House has passed legislation requiring background checks for all gun sales and while Congress is on summer recess, there’s been pressure for the Senate to come back early to take up gun bills. “This is a critical moment in this country’s history,” said U.S. Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD), 7th District.

August 16, 2019

Six members of Maryland’s congressional delegation are raising questions about election security and operations in the state ahead of 2020. Democratic Sen. Benjamin L. Cardin and Chris Van Hollen, along with Reps. Elijah E. Cummings, Steny H. Hoyer, C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger and John P. Sarbanes, sent a letter to Gov. Lawrence J. Hogan Jr. (R) with a series of questions detailing concerns about the 2018 election…. The lawmakers also asserted that before and after the 2018 elections there were concerns about whether voters with disabilities in Maryland are able to vote privately using ballot-marking devices. Earlier this month the National Federation of the Blind sued the State Board of Elections to force an end to what they call a segregated balloting system; the state’s response in federal court is not yet due. The lawmakers raised concern that the number of ballots cast in a presidential election year is generally higher than gubernatorial cycles, so it’s important concerns from 2018 are addressed…. While the governor appoints the bipartisan members of the state’s Board of Elections from party nominees, he is not involved with day-to-day operations of the elections office.

August 8, 2019

Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport will receive a $10 million federal grant to fix up one of its runway approaches, Maryland congressional delegation officials announced Thursday. The money from the Federal Aviation Administration’s Airport Improvement Program will be used for the reconstruction of BWI’s Taxiway Z, “which has reached the end of its useful life,” according to a news release from U.S. Sens. Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen and U.S. Rep. John Sarbanes, all Democrats…. Sarbanes pledged to continue working with the congressional delegation to bring federal grant money for Maryland infrastructure projects. "This federal investment will help ensure that BWI Airport remains one of Maryland’s key commercial and economic hubs,” Sarbanes said in a statement.

August 8, 2019

Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Airport is getting some cash flow from a Department of Transportation grant. Three Maryland lawmakers announced $9.94 million in federal funds for the Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Airport through the U.S. Department of Transportation and Federal Aviation Administration. The funds will be used to reconstruct a portion of Taxiway Z. The announcement comes from U.S. Senators Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen and Rep. John Sarbanes (all D-Md). Sen. Cardin called BWI a huge asset to the state, and the nation, saying that much of the region’s commerce is dependent on the airport’s operation…. Rep. Sarbanes also said the investment will ensure that the airport remains a Maryland economic hub.

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