A Personal Message from Jim

Since 2006, the people of College Park, Beltsville, Adelphi, Laurel, Maryland City, Russett, Piney Orchard, and Odenton, have given me the opportunity to represent them in the Maryland State Senate. I've appreciated their confidence and enjoyed (almost) every minute of it.

The good news is that I've had the chance to fight for the common sense, progressive agenda which our country needs today -- more and better jobs, expanded health insurance, fairer taxes, better public schools, a cleaner environment, and more opportunity for people of every background.

With my support, Maryland expanded health insurance to more than 100,000 people, passed tougher laws to clean up the Chesapeake Bay,  closed tax loopholes for big business. and, with continued investment in education despite the Great Recession, been ranked by Education Week as the #1 state in America in public education.
The bad news is that, because of the failed economic theories of Bush years, too many of my constituents have suffered. Deregulation of Wall Street was even more damaging for most working and retired families than deregulation of electric rates, mine safety, and offshore oil drilling.
Every few weeks, the 21st District Delegates and I set up a card table at a supermarket in our district and invite local residents to join us for "mobile office hours." If you think the Great Recession is over for everyone, join us some weekend at a local supermarket -- you'll hear the truth from average middle class Americans. The recession is not over.
Here's the reality facing some of our neighbors: 

  • A Palestinian immigrant worked in IT for the telephone company for seven years -- and has been unemployed for eighteen months with his two young children on Medicaid.

  • senior citizen who lives on her Social Security and whose Medicare premiums went up this year, while her Social Security check was frozen. She told me she voted for Obama but would never vote Democratic again until her Social Security COLA was restored.     

  • A woman laid off from her job who told me she couldn't afford the pay the COBRA continuation of health insurance for her children. She didn't know that President Obama's stimulus plan subsidizes COBRA payments for the first time.

  • An 82 year old African American veteran who expects to lose his home because his bank won't modify his mortgage.

  • A middle-aged man who is working at Walmart for $8/hour to save his house.

  • Dozens of people of all ages who can't pay their utility bills. (Maryland was one of the states that bought ENRON's deregulation scheme in the 1990's. I've led the bipartisan fight in the Maryland Senate to scrap deregulation and lower electric rates.)  

My staff and I try to help every person who asks for help. Some we can. The President's stimulus plan and state legislation I've voted for help -- more unemployment compensation, energy assistance, health insurance, and protection from foreclosures.
But it's not enough -- it's not nearly enough. This has been the worst economic crisis for American families since the 1930's. And the only thing standing between the current suffering and a much worse and longer lasting recession is common sense government -- in Washington and in Annapolis -- which is committed to helping the victims and cracking down on the creators of the Great Recession.      
In the State Senate, I fight for the people I meet at the supermarkets -- to make the Obama health care plan reduce their fear of illness and bankruptcy, to stop the big banks for making fees by throwing families out of their homes, to put electric rates back under regulation, and to keep college tuition affordable for middle class families.    

Feel free to call me at  (301) 858-3141 or email me at jcrosapepe@yahoo.com with any questions, suggestions or concerns.

I look forward to hearing from you and to working for you.