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PEG 6th Congressional District Newsletter 309

Find your MI State Senator

Find your MI State Rep

A Conversation You Don’t Want to Miss

“Our” Chuck Newman will be interviewing Lauren Jasinski and Dylan Morris, LIVE this Sunday evening for Conversations! Despite their grief over what they experienced and the unforgivable cruelty of gun rights advocates, they founded No Future Without Today to see that we will not have to experience what they did.

Be inspired by their resolve and hear how they became critical contributors to the historic passage of gun safety legislation. You will get the inside story of what’s involved in finally passing this legislation and where we are in finishing the process. We owe it to these extraordinary individuals to hear their story. 

As usual, there will be an opportunity to ask them questions. Register for this meeting here7:30 pm ET

Register HERE

RESOURCES – Prevention through Research, Community Collaboration and Education

Grief and heartbreak due to gun violence have been frequent visitors in our Michigan communities. Here are some Support resources from The Institute for Firearm Injury Prevention, which collaborates with communities and harnesses the research might of the University of Michigan, to address the root causes of, and potential solutions for, the most important issues surrounding firearm violence:

The Institute is working to provide evidence-based solutions to address firearm violence and school shootings. Below is a list of select resources:

For immediate support reach out to the Crisis Text Line or the Suicide Prevention Lifeline.

Proposed Federal Tax Budget 2024

“…give working people a fighting chance….”

On March 9, 2023, Biden proposed a $6.8 trillion budget. He has long believed that the US needs to grow the economy from the bottom up and middle out, not the top down. Over the past two years that economic strategy has produced historic progress for the American people.

The Plan proposes, among other areas, changes in taxes, education and health care.  CNN provides an excellent synopsis. A more robust summary of the changes are summarized here.


  • Place a minimum tax of 25% on billionaires– It would impact those with a net worth of more than $100 million.
  • Increase the corporate tax rate from 21% to 28%. This would raise the rate to that percentage prior to the 2017 GOP tax cut package.
  • Repeal Trump’s tax cuts for the wealthy: Raise the top tax rate from 37% to 39.6%. This would impact single filers making more than $400,000 a year and married couples making more than $450,000 per year, according to the administration.
  •  Restore the enhanced child tax credit: The budget calls for reviving the expanded child tax credit, which was in place in 2021. It would increase the credit to $3,600 per child for those under age 6 and $3,000 for older children.


  • Improve Medicare’s finances: Biden wants to shore up Medicare Part A, the hospital insurance trust fund by raising taxes on those earning more than $400,000 a year and by allowing Medicare to negotiate prices for even more drugs.
  • Reduce prescription drug costs for seniors: The budget proposes to limit Medicare beneficiaries’ out-of-pocket costs for generic drugs used for certain chronic conditions to no more than $2. Seniors’ costs would also drop if Medicare expanded its drug price negotiations.
  • Make enhanced Obamacare subsidies permanent: The budget would continue the more generous Affordable Care Act subsidies, which are set to expire after 2025. The proposal would also provide Medicaid-like coverage to those in states that have not expanded the public health insurance program for low-income Americans.
  • Increase food security: The budget would provide more than $15 billion to allow more states and schools to provide free school meals to an additional 9 million children.
  • Reduce maternal mortality: Biden would provide $471 million to reduce maternal mortality rates and expand maternal health initiatives in rural communities. It would also require all states to provide continuous Medicaid postpartum coverage for 12 months, instead of 60 days.
  • Lower Medicaid spending: The budget would require private insurance companies that provide Medicaid coverage to pay back some money when they charge the program far more than they actually spend on patient care. And it would give the Department of Health and Human Services the authority to negotiate additional, supplemental Medicaid drug rebates on behalf of states.


  • Make college more affordable: The spending plan calls for a $500 increase to the maximum Pell grant, which is awarded to roughly 7 million college students from the lowest-income families annually. It would also provide $500 million for a new grant program to help make two years of community college free. And it requests that Congress provide a $620 million increase in funding for the Office of Federal Student Aid, which processes financial aid forms and helps service student loans.
  • Universal preschool and affordable child care: The budget would provide funding for a new federal-state partnership program that would offer a universal, free preschool. The spending plan would also increase funding for existing federal early care and education programs.

Budgets are not passed as submitted, however, it is believed that President Biden is using the release of his $6.8 trillion budget for fiscal year 2024 to challenge House Republicans to produce their own tax and spending blueprint without cutting Medicare or Social Security.

Forbes has identified 2,688 billionaires in the US in 2022.  Imagine what could be funded if all these people paid higher taxes!

The White House Fact Sheet can be found here.


Thursday, March 23. Censorship…Book Banning and Our Freedom to Read

Learn what’s happening around censorship and what you can do about it on this important JFASD webinar. Join this dynamic and vital discussion. RSVP HERE. 8pm –Jews for a Secular Democracy

Friday, March 24. Housing Vigil

The Interfaith Council for Peace and Justice (ICPJ) is asking the community to come and listen to the stories and needs of our neighbors who have or are experiencing housing insecurity or homelessness. Washtenaw County Admin Building, 220 North Main Street, Ann Arbor, 48104. Gathering and Food 1–5 pm, Speakers and Vigil 3–5 pm

Additional Information:

  1. Washtenaw Dems Special Meeting, March 2023 Video Link
  2. Emergency Family Hotel Program Update from Washtenaw County Graphic to download and share
  3. Housing Access for Washtenaw County: (734) 961-1999 or
  4. Contact your County Commissioner here. The next County Commisioners meeting will be on April 5 at 7 pm.
  5. Review Proposed Solutions from ICPJ here, as they have been conducting Community Conversations that have revealed that existing systems are not adequately supported or, in some cases, not working well in critical areas.

Saturday, March 25. Meet Rep. Jimmie Wilson Jr. for Coffee

State Representative Jimmie Wilson Jr, who represents Ypsilanti and Ypsilanti Township, is holding his next coffee hour on March 25th at 11:00am at the Ypsilanti District Library-Main Branch. There is a virtual option available. Please complete this 

Saturday, April 1. Community Violence Intervention

Gun violence has become the leading cause of death for children and teenagers in this country. The Washtenaw Dems April General Meeting will focus on Community Violence Intervention (CVI) and our approach in Washtenaw County to preventing gun violence in our cities and townships and saving young lives. 

This will be a Hybrid program.

In-person attendees:

The Washtenaw County Learning Resource Center (LRC) is at 4135 Washtenaw Ave., Ann Arbor, 48108. Social hour with coffee and snacks begins at 9:15 am.

Virtual attendees: Zoom link here. Program begins at 9:45 am.

Tech Note:

Download photo (left) with program details by simply right-clicking on the image.

Visit the PEG Events Page for all upcoming events at!

Things to do, read, watch, and listen to

Stand and ACT Now! to help LGBTQ sanctions

Michigan has a silver lining and LGBTQ advocacy groups are applauding the Biden administration for rolling back a Trump-era rule that they say encouraged discrimination on college campuses.“ However, we have to continue the work. Here are a few action steps we can all take:

Read More on PEG Website

Help Michigan Resistance make calls

They will be calling constituents to ask Michiganders to call their senators and representatives to support common sense gun legislation bills over the next few weeks. If you’re interested in helping, text Terryl Sperlich at 810-516-0923 and tell her A2D2 sent you. Ann Arbor inDivisible for Democracy

Voice Your Opinions and Concerns – It’s Easy to Email your Representative

The Democracy Labs provides information on how to determine and contact your state representative to voice your opinion/concerns. There is even an email for you to copy and send.

Whitmer says she’s excited to put state on ‘the right side of history’

“This moment is so long overdue, and too many suffered to get here,” said Sen. Jeremy Moss, D-Southfield, the bill’s sponsor and one of several LGBTQ officials and advocates in attendance at the signing ceremony. “For us, this day has finally arrived: Equal protection under the law.”

The new law includes sexual orientation and gender identity as classes protected against discrimination under the Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act, codifying a series of court orders and interpretive statements that have extended similar rights to Michigan’s LGBTQ community.

The act was backed by former lawmakers Daisy Elliott, a Democrat, and Mel Larsen, a Republican. She has always been an ally, but now considers the matter personal as well as the “proud mom of a gay woman.” “Michiganders are freer today, they are happier today, and I am proud to be playing a small part in that,” she said. “I am excited to put our state on the right side of history.” 

The new law will officially take effect 90 days after the current legislative session ends, as the bill was not granted immediate effect in the Senate. 

Women’s History Month

The Equal Pay Act of 1963 

by PEG Contributor Kayla Conrad

March is Women’s History Month, a month in which we celebrate women everywhere who have fought for equality, justice, and opportunity and on whose acts of bravery, we women stand today. March 14th, 2023, we acknowledged Equal Pay Day, a day that serves as a reminder of the systemic pay inequality American women still face. The pay gap in yearly income amounts to an average of $10,000 per year or 84 cents per dollar paid to men, and the gap is greater for women of color and women with disabilities. The date of March 14 symbolizes how far into the next year white women would need to work to catch up with the earnings of men in the previous year. Consider how demeaning it is for women to try to meet their own and their families’ needs under blatantly unequal and unfair conditions.  

The Equal Pay Act (EPA) was signed into law by John F. Kennedy in 1963 as an amendment to the Fair Labor Standards Act (1938) and was one of the first US labor laws to target discrimination based on sex or gender. Specifically, the EPA “prohibited sex-based wage discrimination between men and women in the same work establishment who perform jobs that require substantially equal skill, effort, and responsibility.” ( 

Yet almost sixty years later, American women still operate with a significant gender pay gap. Why? There are many complex factors, including racism, sexism, and the best interests of business owners to name a few. So, it is no surprise that the original law was weakened by loopholes, inadequate remedies, and adverse court rulings than the Congress of 1963 had originally intended. 

The Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act (2009) was the first bill signed during the Obama-Biden administration. On the 14th anniversary of the Act in January 2023, President Biden spoke about it as having allowed important protections against pay discrimination and helped close persistent gender and racial wage gaps that disadvantaged female employees. He reminded us that in 2022, he signed an Executive Order to advance pay equity for job applicants and employees of federal contractors and noted that more changes still need be done to ensure that all people have a fair shot in this country. He highlighted that improving the economic security of women and their families helps everybody.

President Biden also promoted the importance of ratifying the Paycheck Fairness Act (2021), an amendment of the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938. The Paycheck Fairness Act offers updates required to make the Equal Pay Act a more effective legal tool to challenge company practices by strengthening enforcement of the Equal Pay Act. It does this by aligning the fight for workplace gender equality with other federal anti-discrimination laws, such as the ability to unite in class actions to challenge systemic pay discrimination. Its ratification will be one step toward achieving equal pay for equal work. (


Write your federal representatives and urge them to ratify the Equal Pay Act is a worthy action. The US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) administers and enforces the EPA (1-800-669-4000). For those readers who want to learn more about what the EEOC currently offers, the Commission has prepared an online webinar titled, EEOC 101 Back-To-The Basics Webinar & Listening Session-Equal Pay/Wage (3/23/23). 

Additional Sources:;;;;

Check out this Video about Hate and Anti-Semitism

Write us at if you would like help create our weekly newsletter OR if you would like to be a guest contributor! It’s fun and no ongoing commitment is required.


A special thanks to our newsletter contributors: Lisa Kamil, Richard Gaeth, Bette Cotzin, Bernie Banet, Linda Bennett, Kayla Conrad, Ellen Halter, Leslie McGraw, Leslie Kamil, and Chuck Newman for their contributions and help preparing our newsletters.

PEG is a (somewhat) non-partisan volunteer organization whose mission is to assure that our government will treat all Americans with equality and acceptance. PEG’s work is primarily done by recruiting, educating and nurturing supporters for worthy organizations, actions and events that reflect our beliefs.  To subscribe to this free weekly newsletter, go to our sign up form by clicking here.

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