WASHINGTON — During its first 100 days, the Biden administration has turned around the country’s pandemic response and passed a historic economic relief bill. But Democrats’ leadership on America’s recovery isn’t limited to Washington — Democratic state legislative leaders are stepping up for their communities and fighting for a brighter future. While Republicans are focused on attacking the transgender community and voter suppression, Democrats are making progress on the kitchen table issues that will improve Americans’ lives.
“Our recovery doesn’t start and end in Washington,” said Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee President Jessica Post. “Democratic leaders across the country are working overtime to lead the recovery and pass policies that will improve their constituents’ lives. Tackling our nation’s challenges requires strong partnerships between the states and the federal government — yet another reason why electing Democrats to state legislatures is so important.”
State Democrats across the country have pursued programs and legislation that complement the federal government’s recovery efforts:
- Virginia increased access to child care using stimulus funds and an expansion of the state’s subsidy program sponsored by House Speaker Eileen Filler-Corn.
- New Mexico passed legislation requiring paid sick leave for workers in the state — an essential policy for combatting this and any future pandemics.
- Legislators in New York passed a $2.4 billion rent relief program, which was widely celebrated by tenants’ advocates.
- In Washington’s new budget, lawmakers used stimulus money to fund $1 billion for vaccine distribution, $1 billion for housing assistance, and $3.3 billion on K-12 education.
- Maryland passed a series of measures overhauling health care in the state, including bills that would address geographic health disparities, provide subsidies for young adults to enroll in the state’s health insurance program, improve telehealth for the future, and allow new mothers to stay on Medicaid for a year after giving birth.
- Oregon lawmakers passed a bill that allocates $325 million for summer school and summer child care to help start addressing learning loss that took place during the pandemic.
- New Jersey passed a $100 million bill to help small businesses recover from the effects of the pandemic, including a fund to aid hard-hit restaurants and bars.