Our Revolution Maryland commends Maryland House Democrats for embracing consensus in choosing Delegate Adrienne Jones to be House Speaker. Democrats can be justly proud to have ended Maryland’s shameful 400 year history without either an African American or female House Speaker.
Had corporate-influenced Democrats and members of the Legislative Black Caucus joined Republicans to elect a Speaker, any chance in 2020 to enact either necessary reforms to the legislative process or popular progressive legislation would have been lost. More seriously, the hit to the Democratic Party’s influence and reputation would have taken years to overcome.
Our Revolution Maryland recognizes the crucial role played by our members and other activists in electing Speaker Jones. Through direct contact, thousands of emails, texts, and calls, progressives sent a loud and clear message: If you join with Republicans to elect the next Speaker, you will pay a heavy political price.
Speaker Jones is fair minded. She has consistently put service to the state above personal ambition. Based on her record, we expect that she will be a pragmatic and even-handed leader who will follow the late Speaker Michael E. Busch’s example of working with everyone, while still looking out for the best interests of Marylanders.
Speaker Jones will have a large influence over what bills advance in the House. We hope that she will ensure that popular progressive legislation receives fair consideration. We also call on her to enact needed reforms including term limits for leadership positions and a more democratic and transparent process when it comes to selecting Committee Chairs, Vice-Chairs and other influential officers.
We are optimistic that Speaker Jones will empower Delegates who stand up for marginalized communities and stand up to powerful corporate interests. Our Revolution Maryland looks forward to the opportunity to work with the new Speaker to move our state in a progressive direction.
Note: this statement has been corrected to reflect accurately the name of the Legislative Black Caucus which was erroneously referred to as the “African American caucus” when first released.