Weekly Recap: What You Might Have Missed

As we approach the 90 day count-down to the 2020 General Election, I want to give you an update on how I will be able to communicate with all of you. Starting on August 5th, members of Congress enter a “black out period” which prevents us from sending certain mass communications to our constituents. BUT, the good news is, there are several ways that we can stay in touch and you can receive information from our office.

The best ways to stay in touch with me from August 5th to November 3rd are:

I am committed to fighting for the resources that you need to get through this unprecedented time — safely. Here’s some of what we did for you this past week:

Introduced the Accessible Voting Act

Every day, but particularly during this pandemic, we must ensure that every eligible voter has access to the ballot and can vote safely. When it comes to voting rights, older Americans, veterans and Americans with disabilities are often overlooked, as are the barriers preventing them from making their voices heard at the ballot box.

I’m proud to introduce the Accessible Voting Act alongside Congressman Jamie Raskin and Senator Bob Casey. to make it easier for older Americans and Americans with disabilities to get voting information, request their mail-in ballots, access voter registration and absentee ballot applications, and will provide support to the states to make that happen.

Read more here: https://medium.com/@repmgs/scanlon-raskin-introduce-accessible-voting-act-to-expand-voting-rights-3c39e30c528d?source=linkShare-c2708a5a087-1595601945

Secured NDAA wins for PA-5 workers, families & federal firefighters

I am proud to join my colleagues in passing the FY21 NDAA which supports so many critical programs and jobs in our region, a direct investment in the families and workers who call our region home.

This bill continues to support the Chinook program which is built in our district, invests in our federal firefighters by adopting a better work schedule to meet the needs of their changing work, and provides a three percent pay increase for servicemembers and their families, while making key investments in military infrastructure to support our troops overseas.

While work remains to be done to control defense spending, I am pleased that we were able to win passage of provisions important to our district.

Read more here: https://link.medium.com/VnJxLq5Gs8

Joined Rep. Dwight Evans and community leaders for a housing roundtable

COVID-19 presents acute risks for people experiencing homelessness. It was important to me to hear directly from housing officials and advocate about how COVID-19 has impacted housing in our region, and what Congress can do about it.

the next coronavirus relief bill must include rent and mortgage relief, as well as emergency funding for housing services. House Democrats passed a robust package of housing-related funding in the Heroes Act, and we are negotiating with the Senate and White House to ensure that these policies, other direct relief for PA05 residents, are included in the next bill.

Joined House Judiciary for a Markup on H.R. 2678, the No President is Above the Law Act; and H.R. 7694, the Abuse of the Pardon Prevention Act

These two bills center around presidential accountability. Our democracy depends on our president being accountable to Congress, the people, and to the rule of law. The No President is Above the Law Act would suspend the statute of limitations for any federal offense committed by a sitting president, whether it was committed before or during the president’s term of office. This bill is a direct response to the hardline taken by the Department of Justice, that a sitting president can never be charged with a federal offense.

The Abuse of the Pardon Prevention Act would bring essential transparency and reaffirm existing legal standards with respect to the troubling abuse of the pardon power that we have seen during this Administration.

Watch the markup here: https://judiciary.house.gov/calendar/eventsingle.aspx?EventID=3135

Joined our neighbors in the Liberian community to celebrate Liberian Independence Day

I was grateful to be included in a beautiful event this weekend in Lansdowne to celebrate Liberian Independence Day. The Philadelphia area has one of the largest Liberian populations in the country, including the vibrant economic quarter on Woodland Avenue in Pennsylvania’s 5th district.

Founded by former slaves from the United States, Liberia gained its independence on July 26th, 1847, the first nation in Africa to do so. I was pleased to recognize the many contributions of the Liberian community to our economy and culture.

Joined the National Foster Youth Institute for a live, virtual town hall

I was a child advocate for many years before coming to Congress. Now, I am continuing that work to make sure that all children, including those in our child welfare system, are safe and healthy, and have the support and skills that they need to succeed in life.

One of the ripple effects of the opioid crisis is that more and more grandparents and other relatives are raising children whose parents are absent due to substance use disorders. That’s why I introduced the bipartisan, bicameral Help Grandfamilies Prevent Child Abuse Act with my Republican colleague from Pennsylvania, Glenn Thompson. This bill would:

  • Ensure that grandfamilies and all kinship families are eligible for services under the Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act (CAPTA)

Read more about my bill here: https://scanlon.house.gov/news/documentsingle.aspx?DocumentID=122

Voted to pass the NO BAN Act

Last week the House passed the NO BAN Act to repeal the baseless unconstitutional travel ban enacted by the President. As we finished voting, members began to gather to share their memories of our late colleague Congressman John Lewis.

The Congressman always preached that actions speak louder than words. That’s why the House’s passage of the NO BAN Act, overturning the hateful executive orders that sought to limit travel to our country based on religious bigotry, is such a fitting tribute to our colleague. Congressman Lewis was always ready to stand up to bigotry.

On the night the travel ban took effect, Congressman Lewis went to the Atlanta airport and organized a sit-in when CBP officers refused to allow lawyers to speak with people they had detained. This photo is from a lawyer who was on the ground there that evening. May we always be willing to follow his example and be willing to cause “good trouble” to move us to a more just and equitable nation.

Went live between votes to read through letters from constituents

I had a few minutes in between votes to go through some of the letters from constituents and I wanted to share a few with you. As always, you can send me a note at any time by visiting scanlon.house.gov

Listen to what our neighbors asked me about here: https://www.facebook.com/RepMGS/videos/286912366068935/

Went live to discuss the Congressional Award

I was so excited to be joined by Bethie and Vikas last week to discuss the Congressional Award and the range of programs our office sponsors for young people in our community! Learn more at scanlon.house.gov

Listen to our conversation here: https://www.facebook.com/RepMGS/videos/713953379173507/

I know that the past few months have been incredibly challenging and I want to thank you for doing your part to practice social distancing to save lives. One recent study indicated that widespread mask wearing will reduce US deaths from COVID by as much as 40,000 by the end of the year.

Our office is here to help as we navigate this crisis together. You can reach us by phone at 610–626–2020 or by sending me a message through our website at scanlon.house.gov/contact.



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Mary Gay Scanlon

Mary Gay Scanlon currently serves a member of the U.S. House of Representatives for Pennsylvania’s 5th Congressional District.