Your State Rep Probably Took a Bad Vote Yesterday. But They Can Take a Good One Tomorrow.

If we want to have an equitable recovery from the pandemic and the related recession, we need to invest in our public schools, our public infrastructure, our public health system, and our social safety net in all its forms.

And that requires money.

Unfortunately, the MA House hasn't gotten the memo. The budget that it's currently debating fails to deliver on the promises made in the Student Opportunity Act last year and shortchanges public services across the state.

Legislators have a choice of whether to invest in an equitable economic recovery or accept a dangerous trajectory that leaves the most vulnerable behind.

Yesterday, 127 state representatives chose the latter, voting against a common-sense amendment from Rep. Mike Connolly (D-Cambridge) to tax unearned income (income from non-retirement investments and other forms of asset ownership, such as stocks, bonds, and dividend and interest income) at a higher rate than earned income (income from wages and salaries, as well as pensions, annuities, 401k, IRAs, and other similar retirement accounts). Unearned income goes overwhelmingly to corporate shareholders and other high-income individuals, and a modest increase could generate significant sums of money to fund public services.

Here was the vote.

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You should let your legislator know what you think of their vote.

But there's an opportunity for them to do better.

Your representative may have voted the wrong way yesterday. But they can still take progressive votes if the following amendments are brought to the floor.

Emergency Paid Sick Time 

Urge your state representative to support Amendment #231 -- Emergency Paid Sick Time, which would provide ten additional work-days (80 hours) of job-protected emergency paid sick time for immediate use during the COVID-19 outbreak to workers not covered by federal emergency paid sick time protections.

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Strengthening Reproductive Rights

Amendment #759 -- Improved Access to Health Care would remove medically unnecessary barriers to abortion care. It doesn't contain everything from the ROE Act, but it contains many vital provisions and would be a significant step forward. Voters have made clear that reproductive health care matters, and with abortion and other health care under threat from an anti-abortion Supreme Court, it’s time for Massachusetts to act.

You can also join the ROE coalition in a phone bank tonight or tomorrow night.

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Find your state representative's contact information here.

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