Key Issues

Civil Liberties & Equal Rights


Protecting Maryland Families


Standing Up for Maryland Consumers


Protecting Maryland's Environment


Defending civil liberties and equal rights


Fighting racism, vote hacking and other social and civil injustice

No matter your race, gender, religion, nationality, disability, sexual orientation or identity – you deserve an equal opportunity to fulfill your potential and succeed in our state.

As a delegate in the Maryland legislature, I led efforts to secure the rights of underserved groups who are often the unfortunate targets of discrimination. And, I carried the charge to protect one of our most sacred civil liberties – the right to vote – and successfully blocked voter suppression efforts across our state.

Select accomplishments: 

  • A staunch and early supporter of marriage equality and other LGBTQ rights, including transgender equality.
  • One of Maryland’s most effective legislators on campaign finance reform and voter protection, spearheading the fight for same day voter registration, increased transparency and accountability for super-PACs and other outside campaign spending, public financing of political campaigns, and defeating voter suppression laws. 
  • A leading voice—and sponsor of bills—for increased funding for mental health and developmental disability resources.
  • Stalwart supporter for preserving Roe v. Wade and a woman’s right to make decisions about her own body. 
  • Advocate of rights and opportunities for Maryland's underserved, from securing increased funding for Baltimore City Public Schools to ensuring laws do not discriminate against minorities and other underserved groups.
  • Former Chairman of the Election Law subcommittee, carrying the charge to protect one of our most sacred civil liberties – the right to vote – and successfully blocking voter suppression efforts across our state, as well as taking protective measures against election fraud.


Protecting Maryland Families


Keeping schools as well as our local and online communities safe

Technology presents some of our greatest opportunities and greatest threats. It’s critical for Maryland to develop modern laws that anticipate and stay ahead of emerging trends – establishing a tech-savvy and pliable foundation to continually keep Maryland families safe.  

In 2014, I wrote Grace’s Law – one of the toughest anti-cyber bullying laws in the nation and a model other states have followed – to keep our children safe from online predators and bullies. In addition, I sponsored and supported common-sense measures to protect Marylanders from gang and gun violence, sexual assault, and human trafficking.

Select accomplishments:

  • Supporter of common-sense gun reform, including the Governor’s Firearms Safety Act of 2013 and the Maryland assault weapons ban, to keep weapons of out of the hands of criminals.
  • A leading voice for combating gang violence in our community, including a supporter of the Maryland Gang Prosecution Act of 2007 which established tougher accountability measures for schools to monitor gang involvement.
  • Supporter of Megan’s Law, which set tougher penalties for sex offenders, rapists and child abusers.
  • Along with being author and sponsor of Grace’s law, one of the toughest anti-cyber bullying laws in the nation, led the passage of a bill requiring every school to develop a plan to combat bullying.
  • A leader in the fight to end the devastating effects of human trafficking, which pull thousands of young men and women into a cycle of exploitation and abuse every year.  Cardin co-sponsored  legislation to strip convicted human traffickers of the profits of their crimes.


Standing Up for Maryland Consumers


Protecting your credit and supporting small and large businesses

Maryland must provide a nurturing setting for large and small businesses alike while protecting against predatory corporations that exploit families—when the economy thrives, we all may benefit.

As a politician and lawyer, I have advocated for Maryland consumers and cracked down on predatory lenders and insurance companies seeking to take advantage of Marylanders, as well as co-sponsored legislation against intentionally deceptive advertising.

Select accomplishments: 

  • Led the fight against predatory lending practices that hurt Maryland families, such as payday loans and advance loans.
  • Co-sponsored legislation to crack down on corporations that use deceptive advertisements for automotive sales, clothing sales, and food labeling to intentionally fool Maryland consumers.
  • Embraced President Obama’s forward-thinking healthcare legislation, sharing the belief that everyone deserves quality, affordable healthcare without limitations based on pre-existing conditions, age, or gender.
  • Sponsored first of its kind legislation to help prevent large energy companies from coming into your backyard and taking your land to build dangerous gas lines that could cause deadly explosions or contaminate our precious natural resources.
  • Recognizing that traffic enforcement technology designed to protect Marylanders can also have inherent weaknesses, led an effort to reform speed camera programs statewide by requiring increased accountability, transparency and accuracy.


Protecting Maryland’s Environment


Demanding clean water and air for our children and protecting our Bay

We owe it to our children to leave Maryland’s environment in better shape than we found it. When it comes to the environment, I lead by example living in a carbon-neutral house, recycling more than I discard, and driving a hybrid vehicle.

In the legislature, and in my community, I have been a leading voice for protecting Maryland’s unique environment for future generations.     

Select accomplishments:

  • Sponsored numerous pieces of legislation to revitalize the Chesapeake Bay – a national treasure and economic jewel of Maryland – including taking action to limit storm water runoff, implement Smart Growth practices, close incentives for businesses to contaminate the Bay (and the environment at-large), and hold polluters responsible, as well as establish an oyster shell recycling program.
  • Introduced legislation to increase recycling at state office buildings and to expand the State’s “green portfolio.”
  • Supported incentives to businesses and individuals who reduce their carbon footprints and create next-generation energy jobs.
  • Supported initiatives to improve the air quality across our state such as the clean indoor and outdoor air acts.
  • Maintained a 97 percent lifetime environmental voting record; served as Chairman of the Legislative Bicycle Caucus; and identified opportunities to incentivize state employees to live healthy lifestyles and enjoy more time outdoors.


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