by Hayat Imam
I have written at length to honor Ed Markey’s long years of efforts on our behalf. His opponent, the young Joe Kennedy, has no policy platform to speak of and nothing to say against Ed Markey, except where Markey spends most of his time, in Washington DC or Massachusetts! Well, I think he is where it counts: he is in Massachusetts, listening to the needs and opinions of his constituents, and in Washington D.C. when he needs to vote.
Ed Markey is a champion for an issue that concerns me the most, Climate Change. In 2009, he had the foresight to write the first comprehensive climate legislation (Waxman-Markey Bill) ever to pass the House. The Bill was designed to cut global emissions over time, up to 80% by 2050. It also promoted 20% of US energy coming from renewable energy by 2020. [19% of electricity generation is from renewable energy today; 11% of total energy] Most importantly, Ed Markey is a co-author, along with Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (AOC) of the Green New Deal, a transformative investment to address Climate Change. (And AOC, one of the most progressive members of Congress has endorsed him!)
Ed Markey fights Racism and the vast inequalities African Americans face in all areas, wealth gap, healthcare access, housing, child care. He is a co-sponsor of the only Reparations Bill in the Senate, which establishes a commission to develop a reparations proposal. He supports many other key Bills related to improving Maternal Care, Reduce Mother and Child Mortality, and expand Child Care. Ed has also introduced a resolution to abolish ‘qualified immunity’ that prevents Police from being held accountable for wrongdoing.
When it comes to Health Care, Ed believes it is a Right. He co-sponsored Medicare for All with Bernie Sanders in 2017. He also believes Social Security should be protected! He is the author of the National Alzheimer’s Project, a national plan to prevent and treat the disease.
Ed Markey has done a lot for small businesses in Massachusetts. As part of his long track record, Ed introduced a program in 2019 called Small Business Innovation Research that provides funding and development for businesses to thrive. His fights for federal funding for Massachusetts have resulted in transformations for struggling communities in Malden, Medford, Revere and New Bedford. I love his BRAIN TRAIN Act, which jumpstarts regional networking of affordable, climate-friendly transportation projects!
Ed has stood with the immigrant community. He is a big supporter of the DACA program, the Temporary Protective Status (TPS) and considers the Travel Ban ‘un-American’. He has called out Trump on the cruelty and illegality of the enforcement activities by this administration’s immigration system.
My organization, Mass Peace Action, has endorsed Ed Markey, and that is how I know him best, as an advocate for Peace and Justice. The Kennedy name is not enough to stand up to the leadership and stability Ed Markey brings to the issues of Impoverishment, Climate Change and the threat of Nuclear Weapons Proliferation.