The Student News Site of Severna Park High School

The Talon

The Student News Site of Severna Park High School

The Talon

The Student News Site of Severna Park High School

The Talon

Recent Sports Scores

Hit the Polls, Young Voters

John Morse is running for Congress. He encourages everybody to stay informed and vote – whether it be early, by mail or on May 14, Election Day.
Shubh Agnihotri
Around 4:20 p.m. on Tuesday, May 5, Severna Park High School senior Shubh Agnihotri and Congressional candidate John Morse stand near the Pip Moyer Recreation Center in downtown Annapolis as they regroup after knocking on 44 doors together. “You can always be an asset to your community if you work hard enough to do it, so I really encourage you to look around about the stuff you really care about,” Agnihotri said. Agnihotri coordinated the Young Democrats meeting which John Morse attended to inform youth voters about his policies and the importance of voting/registering to vote.

Former attorney John Morse is running for Maryland’s Third Congressional District. As a result, he has gone around multiple counties, schools and neighborhoods including SPHS to spread his campaign message.

“I was the head of students for Obama when I was in college and as a lawyer I worked on voter protection efforts in Virginia. It was a great experience because it really helped me [as] I’m running for office now. As a labor lawyer I worked on legislation on the Hill in DC, in Congress. That means that over a decade I have been writing legislation getting that passed to improve the lives of working people and making sure that when they’re employing everybody that they’re actually fair with how they’re treating people and that people can actually make a living and we can improve their quality of life. And make sure when people get sick they are taken care of,” Morse said at the Young Dems meeting on April 19.

“I jumped in this race because I saw everybody else who had come in and I thought I could do a better job. I saw that they weren’t talking about the issues I think are most important. I look at society right now and I see this widening gap between the ultra-wealthy and the rest of us. Structurally our economy could be set up so much better where everybody can achieve the American dream. How are all of you going to be able to afford college when you have crazy student loans and then along the way you someday wanna buy a house. The average house in our district – (the district goes from Annapolis up to Howard County and a little sliver of Carol County) the average housing price is $500,000. Meanwhile, you have to save for your down payment; so $500,000, a 20% down payment, that’s $100,000. That’s a lot of money when you’re paying a lot of rent.”

Morse continued with various points regarding gun safety, education, student loans and the ever-increasing cost-of-living.“People are frustrated with Congress. It’s broken because of the corporate special interests with their massive checkbooks that study after study shows influence members of Congress who vote to help their corporate backers at the expense of their own constituents. I believe first and foremost in getting money out of politics. If we do that, then you will see a drastic shift in the priorities of public officials. And my campaign reflects my values. I don’t take corporate PAC money and the foundation of my campaign is going door to door to ask voters what matters to them. That takes a lot of hard work but it’s essential to really understand what people in this congressional district care about. The bottom line is people are sick of dishonest politicians who don’t stand for the right things – and I am going to change that the only way I know how, which is by running an honest, grassroots campaign supported by people and not corporations.”

Story continues below advertisement

Some examples of legislation/under-discussed issues on the national level that Morse would like to champion should he get elected to Congress include: 

“As a progressive democrat, there are many issues I intend to champion to improve the quality of life of working people such as affordable childcare. But your readership may be most interested in issues I will champion improving the lives of young people just starting out their lives after high school. I will champion a national service corps for young people that will give everyone necessary job experience and benefit our communities. I also will reign in the excessively high cost of higher education and pursue funding for apprenticeships. Lastly, I will combat restrictions on social media and book bans. We need to keep right wing ideologies out of our education system so that teachers are free to teach and students are provided a full, holistic education,” Morse said.

As a result of the Francis Scott Key Bridge Collapse in Baltimore, traffic congestion has become an even greater problem, putting strain on the Baltimore Harbor Tunnel and Fort McHenry Tunnel. Having recently received the endorsement of the Transportation Communications Union, Morse claims to act in Congress to reduce traffic during the time before the Key Bridge is rebuilt, whether by rail transit or other means, slowly but surely.

“As a Union lawyer for flight attendants for over a decade, I’ve frequently worked on legislation in Congress impacting transportation. The reality is that we’re far behind where we need to be when it comes to revitalizing our transportation and infrastructure to reflect climate change and there will not be an overnight fix to our transportation issues. But I intend to focus on expanding public transportation with a rail system that is green, affordable, and convenient. We have so many areas in our district where you can’t practically access public transportation and have to have a car. That increases congestion and is bad for the environment. But if we expand public transportation then that’s the first step in fixing these issues.”

Morse’s opinion on what a “fair economy for all” looks like and what legislation he plans to work to pass to create that future.

From the moment you’re born to when you’re retiring the economy holds you back- whether it’s the high cost of childcare or education, unexpected healthcare costs, or a retirement that is threatened. We need an economy that fully supports people as they live their lives and that reigns in our of control excessive wealth. When a handful of individuals retain an outsized proportion of wealth in this country and the wealth gap is only getting wider, that is not good for society and everyone should have the ability to achieve the American Dream.”

What makes Morse stand out from the numerous other candidates running for MD-03: (Leading into Gaza ceasefire)

“I’m the most progressive in this race because in my legal work representing flight attendants and undocumented children I’ve seen the practical realities of how our society is not strong enough to help people through hard times. And when you’re running for office you have to have courage. Courage to stand up for what’s right and the courage to fight for people who are largely left in the dark. When you see the devastating humanitarian disaster unfolding in Gaza, we need a permanent ceasefire to save lives. I am by far the most outspoken candidate on this issue and the only candidate who’s publicly called for this permanent ceasefire. Being an innocent civilian population with nowhere to go will not return the hostages. Instead, we need to pressure the extremist government of Israel to stop and to let diplomacy and peace prevail.”

Other work as a lawyer Morse has done representing undocumented children coming to the US as well as other pro bono cases he has worked on: (Referring to candidate Q&As on Baltimore Banner article)

“I’m an activist at heart. When I was in high school, I was fighting for LGBTQIA rights, human rights, and workers rights and that mentality of advocating for justice is at my core. Coming from the labor movement, and now representing undocumented children in immigration and state court is the latest in a lifetime of advocacy for righting wrongs. Most people coming to this country who end up in immigration court don’t have a lawyer-some as young as two or three years old. That’s wrong,” Morse said. “These are some of the best of us and no human is illegal. Everyone deserves love and we’re a better society when we embrace the stranger and combat people who demonize others. I’ll always stand up for others because that’s who I am.”

His opinion on the protests and riots occurring at Ivy League schools across the country: this hot-button issue may seem to be forming further radical schisms in ideologies, but it is unifying people across all backgrounds and walks of life.

Morse said: “I’m encouraged by young people who are similarly taking a stand to say that we must stop supporting the war in Gaza. Politicians who write off young people thinking that they don’t participate in the democratic process and don’t vote do so at their own peril. This generation of young people have a sense of justice that inspires me. We see Jewish, Muslim, Christian students banding together to combat the status quo – that’s a world I believe in and issues I intend to address in Congress.”

Leave a Comment
More to Discover
About the Contributors
Noel Castillo
Noel Castillo, Editor-in-Chief
Noel is a senior at SPHS, he is the current Editor-in-Chief and this is his fourth year writing for the Talon. He enjoys providing entertainment and information for others and one way he can do both is getting the scoop on people’s lives and sharing them. He loves listening to and writing hip-hop music, skateboarding, learning, playing video games and hanging out with friends. 
Logan Humphries is a Senior and new member of SPHS Talon. Humphries is a staff editor who enjoys skating, food, and making money. He's the vocalist of the punk band Slag Dump with fellow staff writer Colten Billings.

Comments (0)

All The Talon Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *