On smaller screens, you may have to scroll down to view Summer’s statements on these&nbspissues.

Throughout our nation’s history, we have never delivered on the promises of democracy. The legacies of slavery and Jim Crow have carried on through voter disenfranchisement, gerrymandering, and voter suppression making the ballot box inaccessible, especially for poor, Black and brown people across the country.

Fixing our democracy goes beyond stopping Trump, elected Republicans, and right-wing judges from engaging in voter suppression and abusing their power to overturn the results of free and fair elections. It also includes working to end racist voter ID and suppression laws, restoring the full power of the Voting Rights Act, and ending gerrymandering.

I’m working to make it easier to vote, not harder – and that means federal automatic voter registration, nationwide early and mail voting, federal holidays for election days, and same day voter registration. Everyone deserves a say in our democracy–and that includes immigrants and folks who are incarcerated.

Additionally, as long as corporations can funnel billions into elections, our democracy will continue to belong to the highest bidder. In Congress, I’m fighting back against corruption and for comprehensive campaign finance reform that ends Citizens United and puts campaigns back into the hands of the people is a necessary step to rebuilding our democracy.

Our government’s rules have also failed to fulfill the promise of democracy and it is time we end outdated and arbitrary laws. I’m fighting to:

  • Ban members of Congress from trading stocks because lawmakers should not be profiting off access to closed-door information about the companies they’re supposed to be regulating. Members of Congress who trade stocks have a clear conflict of interest — that’s why I’m proud to pledge to never trade individual stocks while in office. Members of Congress need to work for the People they represent, not for their own portfolios.
  • End the filibuster, a tool championed by segregationist Senators to oppose civil rights legislation, that continues to stand in the way of progress today.
  • Enforce Real Ethics Requirements, End Lifetime Appointments, and Expand the Supreme Court and federal courts so that right-wing extremists cannot sell our fundamental rights and freedoms to the highest bidder.

In Congress, I’ve cosponsored more than 20+ bills to strengthen voting rights and safeguard democracy, including the following:

  • John R. Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act of 2023 to protect voting rights against attacks by Republican state legislatures and right wing judges by restoring and revitalizing the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and strengthen legal protections against discriminatory voting policies and practices.
  • Freedom to Vote Act to improve access to the ballot for Americans, advance commonsense federal election standards and campaign finance reforms, and strengthen our democracy.
  • Democracy For All Amendment - to overturn Citizens United, granting Congress and the States the ability to limit the raising and spending of money in campaigns for public office.
  • We the People Amendment to end corporate constitutional rights after the Supreme Court's flawed ruling in Citizens United which established political spending as protected speech, further prevented limits on campaign spending, and allowed outside groups to accept unlimited political donations..
  • DISCLOSE Act - to end the scourge of dark money, shine a bright light of transparency on politics, and make government more accountable to the will of voters.
  • During the appropriations process, I also advocated for full funding for the Emmett Till Unsolved Civil Rights Crimes Reauthorization Act, which provides funding for the Department of Justice and FBI to investigate and prosecute unsolved civil rights era murders
  • Bipartisan Ban on Congressional Stock Ownership Act to ban Members of Congress and their spouse from owning and trading stocks.

Our democracy has long been broken, but we have the tools to protect it from extremist Republicans and rebuild a more reflective democracy once and for all.

All policymaking must be rooted in a disability justice framework, which recognizes it as inextricable from racial, gender, and economic justice, and means we must work in solidarity across “categories” to build towards collective access. Ableism in our country and its laws have forced disabled people into second-class citizenship. While almost 1 in 4 people in the nation have a disability, disabled people are overrepresented in our prisons, are disproportionate victims of police violence, and are more likely to face poverty.

We must ensure that all disabled people are paid fairly, and we must end the loopholes that allow businesses to pay disabled people subminimum wages. Additionally, we must expand and reform Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI), so that people receiving benefits can actually survive on them and end the punitive regulations that trap disabled people into poverty.

Years after the COVID-19 pandemic exposed the deep inequities that have always existed within our healthcare system–especially for disabled communities–we must not only pass Medicare for All, but ensure that it includes coverage of community-based long term support services as well as massive federal investments in home and community-based services (HCBS) to get hundreds of thousands of disabled people off waiting lists for home care and ensure they have access to the care they and their families need.

We must also ensure that folks with disabilities have access to a quality education - one key way to do that is by increasing funding for the constantly underfunded Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, so disabled students have the resources they need in public schools.

Since taking office, I’ve continued my commitment to disability justice by:

Right now, our economy works for the wealthy few and corporations at the expense of the working poor. Corporate tax breaks, unregulated Wall Street and Big Tech companies, and handouts to corporate polluters as social services continue to be underfunded have only reinforced the deep systemic inequalities that we continue to face as a nation. Economic growth has left behind marginalized communities and it’s time we center working people in our economic policies.

That’s why I’ve continued to advocate for legislation that supports a livable wage and aims to close the unnecessary gap between skyrocketing corporate profits and working people’s poverty wages. There is no reason why the people in our community - or in any community - should be unable to afford a home on the wages they earn after working a full-time job.

Pittsburgh is a union town. And every worker deserves a union. That’s why, in Congress, not only have I fought tirelessly for constituents’ right to unionize and collectively bargain, but I’ve regularly joined striking workers, labor unions, and workers organizing to unionize at pickets, rallies, roundtables, and meetings. I’ve hosted and joined events with UPMC health workers and hospital workers rising, rallied with Wabtec United Electrical Workers, headlined AFL-CIO’s annual lawyers conference, participated in multiple rallies with striking Pittsburgh Post Gazette workers in Pittsburgh and DC, visited Starbucks United Workers across our district, advocated for United Steelworkers to improve relationships with faculty organizing at University of Pittsburgh, hosted UAW, USW, and dozens of other unions in DC, spoke at the AFL-CIO Professional Aviation Safety Specialist conference, met with UAW organizers, met with striking SAG and WGA workers in Pittsburgh, and joined the Black nurses association’s national conference.

Our community’s history is the greatest proof you need for the benefits of being in a union and the disadvantages of being kept out of them. Now, we’re witnessing historically low rates of unionization nationwide. We know unions are one of our greatest tools to reduce inequality, raise wages, and support better benefits and job protections, so I’m ready to fight for a robust labor movement that reflects the racial, gender, and industry diversity that a 21st century labor movement demands. That’s why I’m fighting to pass the PRO Act - because I believe that every worker deserves a union and it’s time for our laws to protect unions and strengthen workers’ rights to organize.

A critical component of the Green New Deal is its focus on a jobs guarantee, a guaranteed living wage, and strengthening the U.S. labor movement. Transitioning American society to 100% clean and renewable energy will create millions of good-paying union jobs. We have a moral obligation to make that transition to save our planet and ensure that all fossil fuel workers are fully equipped with the skills and training necessary to thrive in a green energy economy. No worker will be left behind.

I’ve also introduced or cosponsored more than 25+ bills to promote workers’ rights and address systemic inequality in our economy, including the following:

As we’ve seen in Western Pennsylvania, we can’t address the affordability crisis without finally addressing the rising cost of housing. Homelessness has continued to rise in Allegheny County, as over 900 people in Allegheny County are experiencing homelessness, including 155 who are unsheltered. In addition, the rent is getting too damn high, as more people are housing insecure, and rents continue to increase faster than people’s wages are growing.

That’s why in my first year in Congress, I’ve:

12.5% of Pennsylvanians are food insecure. That number raised to 21% when you examine the city of Pittsburgh. Too many people in PA-12 lack access to healthy, nutritious meals and often live in food deserts. We cannot seriously address the affordability crisis unless we make sure nobody in our region is forced to go hungry.

That’s why in my first term in Congress, I’ve:

Every child deserves access to a first-rate, free public education - regardless of their zip code or socioeconomic background. Unfortunately, the way public schools are funded is deeply inequitable, leaving behind working-class communities and communities of color.

In the State House and now in Congress, I’ve fought tirelessly for equitable funding for our schools. That means a fair funding formula that guarantees that children will not be punished for growing up in the “wrong” zip code – and it means raising teachers' pay so that our educators have what they need to provide every child with a quality public education.

I’m also fighting for universal free pre-kindergarten, including early childcare, free school meals for every child, and dramatically expanding teacher-training programs with a focus on generating high-quality teachers with cultural competency among an increasingly diverse student population.

As a working-class Black woman with a mountain of student debt, I know firsthand that the massive burden of student debt is not only keeping us from being able to afford even the basics, starting families, opening up small businesses, and building generational wealth – but it’s hurting our entire economy. Public colleges and universities and vocational programs should be tuition-free and ALL existing student loan debt should be canceled - period.

We must also protect our public school curricula from right-wing attacks. Rather than honoring the brilliance and diversity of our country’s authors, illustrators, and educators, Republicans are focused on banning books and banning history – from Black and Indigenous history to holocaust education. These book bans and history bans are not only an attack on our freedoms, but they marginalize people who already face systemic discrimination in our society – including people of color, the LGBTQ+ community, religious minorities, and people with disabilities. In Congress, I’m fighting to stop the book bans and history bans because every reader deserves to see themselves reflected in our literature and every student deserves the freedom to learn.

So far, I've:

  • Co-led the introduction of the Relieving Economic Strain to Enhance American Resilience and Competitiveness in Higher Education and Research (RESEARCHER) Act to curb financial insecurity in higher education and improve Western PA competitiveness by addressing financial instability for graduate and postdoctoral researchers.
  • Cosponsored the College for All Act to expand the dream of a college degree to millions of Americans by making public colleges and universities, as well as the vast majority of Historically-Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), Tribal Colleges and Universities (TCUs), Hispanic-Serving Institutions, Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander Serving Institutions (AANAPISIs), and other Minority-Serving Institutions (MSIs) tuition- and debt-free.
  • Co-sponsored Green New Deal for Public Schools Act to revitalize the K-12 system by upgrading every public school building in the country, invest in schools serving low-income students, fully funding education for students with disabilities, and giving schools resources to hire hundreds of thousands of educators, paraprofessionals, staff, and counselors to support student mental health.
  • Co-sponsored the Universal School Meals Program Act to permanently provide free breakfast, lunch, and snack to all school children.
  • Co-sponsored the Fight Book Bans Act to end right-wing efforts to control what students read.
  • Co-sponsored legislation to support African American history education programs and holocaust education programs in schools
  • Cosponsored the RAISE Act to increase teachers pay teachers by giving them up to $15,000 in refundable tax credits
  • Co-sponsored the Universal School Meals Program Act to ensure EVERY child has access to free school breakfast and lunch so that they have the nutrients necessary to learn and thrive at school
  • Co-sponsored legislation to increase mathematical and statistical modeling education in public elementary and secondary schools.
  • Secured $1,000,000 Granted for Tree of Life Educational Space Rebuild as part of the upcoming FY2024 Appropriations Bill to educate against antisemitism and white supremacy in all its forms–breathing life back into a community hub that has remained dormant following the tragic antisemitic attack

On any given day, our region suffers from some of the poorest air quality in the nation. CEOs get wealthy while the people of Western Pennsylvania–particularly in our Black and brown communities--experience higher rates of asthma, cancer and other diseases. Despite these increased health risks, large corporate polluters have invested millions on lobbyists to stop Congress from acting with the urgency we need to combat the climate crisis and guarantee clean air and drinking water in our communities.

I’ve always been vocal in opposition to corporate polluters pumping toxins into our air and drinking water – and I’ve always emphasized the need for sustainable, clean energy union jobs. When there was a fracking proposal in the Mon Valley, we joined with the community to fight back and stopped it in its tracks. The people in our community have been fighting back against fossil fuel corporations for decades, and I am proud to continue to stand with them.

In Congress, I’ve fought tirelessly for a Green New Deal to transition to a 100% clean and renewable energy economy and create thousands of good-paying, union jobs in Western Pennsylvania. This includes ending fracking, which poses a disproportionate threat to communities like ours. The Green New Deal allows us to center our frontline and marginalized communities facing the brunt of environmental racism. Communities with poisoned water, high rates of asthma, etc. Communities like ours.

I believe everyone deserves clean air and safe drinking water. That’s why in Congress, I’ve brought home millions of dollars to fund the replacement of all lead water lines. It is unconscionable that anyone in America wouldn’t have access to clean water. We can and must guarantee clean water for all. We have the financial resources to make it happen.

In Congress, I’ve:

  • Introduced and passed through committee Bipartisan Abandoned Well Remediation Act, legislation that will address the impact of methane emissions from abandoned oil and gas wells that threaten the health, property value, and well being of hundreds of thousands of Pennsylvanians by creating an abandoned wells research, development, and demonstration program at the Department of Energy. My bill passed through the Science Space and Technology Committee on a unanimous, bipartisan basis and awaits a vote by the full House
  • Introduced and passed an amendment to remove lead contamination from schools and childcare centers currently threatening the health of our children after lead was found in the water of all but one of Allegheny County’s public schools
  • Cosponsored the Environmental Justice For All Act - comprehensive legislation rooted in the moral principle that all people have the right to pure air, clean water, and an environment that enriches life. It is informed by the belief that federal policy can and should seek to achieve environmental justice, health equity, and climate justice for all underserved communities.
  • Cosponsored the Fossil Free Finance Act - to mandate that the biggest banks stop financing the climate crisis and instead lend and invest responsibly, in line with targets that would keep global warming within 1.5°C.
  • Cosponsored the CLEAN Energy Act + NOW Act - to advance clean energy development on our public lands and waters by repealing harmful ties to fossil fuel leasing requirements.
  • Cosponsored the Future Generations Protection Act - to ban greenhouse gas emissions from all new power plants, stop hydraulic fracking and ban crude oil and natural gas exports.
  • Cosponsored the Climate Resilience Workforce Act to build a climate resilience workforce, a national climate resilience action plan, an Office of Climate Resilience within the White House, and related efforts and entities.

Through my membership in the Science, Space, and Technology Committee and through my work fighting to deliver federal dollars that will build much-needed infrastructure projects, provide clean energy to the region, and provide much-needed investment in our communities that face the brunt of our pollution and climate crisis. This includes:

Like communities across the country, Western Pennsylvania is facing a gun violence epidemic. In Congress, I’ve helped lead the fight to pass an assault weapons ban, expanded background checks, end protections for corporate gun manufacturers and bold gun-safety legislation to stop the mass shootings that have become all too common across schools, synagogues, churches, mosques, stores and cities across America.

We’ve also seen the effects of white supremacist, antisemitic violence, and the violence of mass shootings at the Tree of Life Synagogue. When I toured the site of the attack in February and met with Foundation leadership and family members of those murdered, I was profoundly moved by the conversations I had with family members of those who had their lives senselessly taken. These conversations led me to:

When a dozen Pennsylvania schools were forced to go on lockdown and evacuate students due to swatting calls later determined to be false – just days after the horrific Nashville elementary school shooting, I spoke on the House floor about the need to address the trauma our students, parents, teachers experience due to gun violence, even when they are not killed or injured. I’m now working to introduce legislation to track and study the impact of gun trauma on those impacted but not killed or injured, which the Center for Disease Control currently does not account for.

I helped introduce legislation to open the Office of Gun Violence Prevention within the Department of Justice's Office of Legal Policy. The Biden administration listened, and opened the office months later – which is now beginning the work of coordinating various gun violence prevention efforts that are administered by the Department of Justice, recommending policy options to promote evidence-based gun violence prevention strategies, and promote related data collection.

In communities like ours, gun violence even more often means the widespread violence that happens in our streets with handguns. That violence is rooted in poverty, rooted in communities that have gone underfunded and ignored for too long. We need an investment in our schools, after-school programs, and wrap-around services. We need an investment in jobs and higher wages, so people have a choice in shaping their future. Gun violence cannot be addressed in isolation, it’s rooted in every social service funding we cut and must be combatted at that level too.

I joined the Congressional Gun Violence Prevention Task Force so members of the House of Representatives from various backgrounds can come together to create concrete solutions to the gun violence epidemic that has afflicted Western Pennsylvania and continues to take our loved ones across the country.

I’ve taken the following legislative actions to protect our loved ones from mass shootings and gun violence:

  • Co-sponsored Ethan's Law to require safe storage of firearms on residential premises at the federal, state, and tribal levels.
  • Co-sponsored the Assault Weapons Ban of 2023.
  • Co-sponsored the Firearm Safety Storage Act to establish voluntary best practices for safe firearm storage solely for the purpose of public education.
  • Co-sponsored the Raise the Age Act to increase the age to purchase a semiautomatic centerfire rifle from 18 to 21 years old.
  • Co-sponsored the Closing the Bump Stop Loophole Act to make it illegal to manufacture, sell, or process bump stocks for civilian use. Bump stocks are supplemental gun devices that enhance firearm capabilities to duplicate automatic fire and have contributed to many mass shootings.
  • Co-sponsored the Office of Gun Violence Prevention Act to establish an Office of Gun Violence Prevention within the Department of Justice's Office of Legal Policy. Among its duties, the office must coordinate various gun violence prevention efforts that are administered by the Department of Justice, recommend policy options to promote evidence-based gun violence prevention strategies, and promote related data collection.
  • Co-sponsored the Enhanced Background Check Act to increase the amount of time, from 3 business days to a minimum of 10 business days, that a federal firearms licensee must wait to receive a completed background check prior to transferring a firearm to an unlicensed person

No human being is illegal. Our immigration system is a broken web of xenophobic policies that seek to punish brown and Black people and treat them as political pawns instead of building pathways to citizenship.

Here in Pittsburgh, where we face declining population growth, our immigrant families are not only essential to our communities, but also our economy. Immigrants in Western Pennsylvania are essential to our ability to meet our labor force demands, meeting rising needs in key industries, contributing to taxes, and growing our manufacturing sector so that our economy can thrive.

  • Immigrants are helping the city meet its labor force demands. Immigrants made up 9.0 percent of the city’s population but accounted for 9.2 percent of its employed labor force.
  • Immigrants are helping Pittsburgh meet its rising labor needs in key industries. Immigrants represented 17.7 percent of STEM workers, 16.1 percent of education workers, and 13.1 percent of manufacturing workers.
  • Immigrants support the federal safety net. Immigrants in Pittsburgh contributed $93.9 million to Social Security and $26.8 million to Medicare in 2019.
  • Immigrants in Pittsburgh help create or preserve local manufacturing jobs. Immigrants strengthened the local job market by allowing companies to keep jobs on U.S. soil, helping preserve or create 1,200 local manufacturing jobs that would have otherwise been eliminated or moved elsewhere by 2019

We need to restore humanity in our immigration system by ending the separation of families and reversing roadblocks for asylum-seekers and refugees. Millions of undocumented immigrants, from Dreamers to people with Temporary Protected Status (TPS), deserve a pathway to citizenship because their home is here.

Right now, our immigration system is built like our broken criminal legal system - it is punitive, relies on private prisons for detention, has built up an over-militarized border, and has turned ICE into a violent policing agency. All of that must end for us to prioritize the people getting lost, abused, and deported by our current immigration system.

I’ve cosponsored legislation in Congress that helps ensure immigrants are treated with the dignity and respect they deserve, and fix our backlogged and deliberately overburdened immigration system. These include:

  • Protect Vulnerable Immigrant Youth Act. This bill would eliminate employment-based visa caps on abused, abandoned, and neglected immigrant children, known as Special Immigrant Juveniles.
  • LIFT the BAR Act. This bill would eliminate the current five-year waiting period that’s applied to immigrants for access to Medicaid, the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), and the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program. More background.
  • Neighbors Not Enemies Act. This bill would fully repeal the Alien Enemies Act of 1798 which allows the U.S. president to determine how and if all foreign nationals from a specific country should be "apprehended, restrained, secured and removed.
  • Fair Adjudications for Immigrants Act. The Fair Adjudications for Immigrants Act would ban convictions that have been pardoned, annulled, invalidated, or expunged from consideration in citizenship proceedings. Conversely, it would also bar such expunged convictions from being used against an immigrant in deportation proceedings.
  • Dignity for Detained Immigrants Act. This bill would repeal mandatory detention, bar children and families from being detained, create a presumption of release for vulnerable populations, phase out immigration detention at private facilities and jails, and make other changes to U.S. immigration detention.

Decades of purposeful disinvestment, economic redlining, and discriminatory policy-making have created cycles of harm, poverty, and desperation that make all of us less safe. The only way to make a safer Western Pennsylvania now and for future generations is to address the root causes of violence through long-term, layered investments in key areas: education, economic opportunity, housing, health, community environment, community violence intervention.

We know the best way to improve community safety is to invest in poverty-prevention, mental health, and wraparound services in communities. That’s why, In Congress, I’ve fought for the following legislative solutions and investments in community safety that address the root of the problem by investing in our people and neighborhoods to secure a safer region for generations to come:

  • Delivered nearly $9.5M for criminal justice reform initiatives, including efforts to prevent trafficking of black girls and and programs to reduce recidivism.
  • Secured $963,000 for the City of Pittsburgh Criminal Justice Diversion Program to be included in the FY2024 Appropriations bill (likely passing in February) to provide people with substance use disorder and mental and behavioral health challenges with person-centered social services and intense case management to keep our communities safer.
  • Co-led the People's Response Act to create a public safety agency within the Department of Human Health and Services to emphasize an inclusive, holistic, and health-centered approach to public safety

Mass incarceration and police brutality perpetuate this cycle of harm and prevent us building stronger families and communities in this Western Pennsylvania. The existing criminal and juvenile justice systems are among the biggest barriers to community safety, social justice and upward mobility. Not only is this counterproductive, but its also expensive. Our country spends more on prisons than education. This spending comes at the expense of investments that could actually address the root causes of violence and that Pennsylvanians rely on–from food assistance to affordable housing, mental health and Medicaid. In Congress, I’ve fought for legislation to shift from investing in ineffective, punitive systems to investing in a safer future for us all.

I am committed to ending the school to-prison pipeline by continuing to secure funding to make ALL our public schools safe spaces for all students to learn and grow. Our current model of referring children to armed law enforcement on campus and prosecuting them for schoolyard infractions feeds children into the prison industrial complex and limits their future prospects. Instead of defaulting to suspension, expulsion, and incarceration, we must implement more restorative and effective practices–from fair funding formulas, to investments in mental and behavioral health, social work, services for students with disabilities, free school meals, vocational training, wraparound services and more.

I am opposed to mandatory minimum sentencing laws. The strategy behind the “War on Drugs” has been an unmitigated disaster that has only torn families and communities apart. Mandatory minimums disproportionately affect poor and Black communities, and hinder efforts to combat the opioid crisis in our communities today. Our family members, friends, and neighbors who suffer from addiction don’t need harsh prison sentences; they need affordable and accessible medical care.

We must also end the numerous inhumane practices across our justice system. That means eliminating cash bail because our current system, which imprisons people based on their ability to pay, is a barbaric relic that punishes the poor for their poverty. Additionally, we must abolish the death penalty and life without parole–the state should not have the power to end someone’s life or sentence them to death by incarceration. That’s why I’ve:

  • Co-led the People's Response Act which creates a public safety agency within the Department of Human Health and Services to emphasize an inclusive, holistic, and health-centered approach to public safety
  • Co-sponsored the Ending Qualified Immunity Act to end the doctrine of qualified immunity that shields police from accountability when they break the law.
  • Original cosponsor of the People’s Justice Guarantee, a resolution that calls to substantially reduce the number of people incarcerated and transform the purpose and experience of the criminal legal system.
  • Original cosponsor of the Federal Death Penalty Prohibition Act to end the use of the death penalty by the federal government.

The struggle for LGBTQ+ rights is among the defining civil rights issues of our time. Congress must pass the Equality Act to provide long overdue federal protections for LGBTQ+ people and their families. Right now there are no federal standards to prohibit discrimination against LGBTQ+ people in health care, housing, employment, etc. Beyond these fundamental protections, we must focus on meaningful representation for the LGBTQ+ community in politics, ward off a right-wing Supreme Court that could poke holes in LGBTQ rights based on “religious liberty,” and address the many disparities that the LGBTQ+ community faces in affordable, inclusive health care.

We must continue fighting back against LGBTQ+ and gender discrimination in all forms. That’s why I introduced the Equality in Laws Act–because gendered, rather than gender-neutral, language has resulted in further discrimination for women, gender-nonconforming, nonbinary, and intersex folks.

In Congress I’ve helped introduce legislation that directly address the issues facing the LGBTQ community, including:

I continue to believe that healthcare is a fundamental human right. No one in this country should fear losing coverage because of preexisting conditions, their employment status, their immigration status, daring to start their own business, or aging off of their parent’s insurance. Our healthcare system is fundamentally broken. Medicare For All wouldn’t just save money, it would save lives.

Medicare for All would eliminate fees and expand coverage, which means no one has to live in fear of bankruptcy in the event of a medical emergency or even just seeking preventative care. No more copays, deductibles and premiums. It would include not just medical, but also vision, dental, reproductive, mental health, and long-term care coverage. In too many cities like ours, we see mental health care and addiction crises criminalized through mass incarceration instead of supported in our healthcare system--Medicare for All would ensure a federal investment in mental healthcare and addiction services at the scale our communities need. Medicare for All will also lower prescription drug prices by allowing the government to negotiate drug prices and allowing consumers to buy directly from cheaper markets, forcing Big Pharma back to the negotiating table.

The COVID-19 pandemic only further exposed the inequities in our healthcare system. Black, brown, and indigenous adults are more likely to be uninsured than the national average. At the same time, Black people have higher maternal mortality, infant mortality, asthma rates among kids, and are more likely to die from cancer than anyone else. For marginalized communities, access to healthcare is a decision between life and death. I’ve taken this battle to Congress, where I’ve:

While we continue the fight for Medicare for All to ensure everyone has health care, there are also several parts of the health care system that need to be fixed, whether fighting Medicare and Medicaid to cover ALL medical care, including vision and dental, or addressing staffing issues and funding concerns in our health care systems. Ensuring we improve all of our standard of living and quality of life requires a comprehensive approach. That’s why I’ve cosponsored:

Addressing reproductive health, rights, and justice–particularly the Black maternal and infant mortality crisis–is critical to ensuring just and equitable health care for all. I’ve addressed them further in its own issue page.

Trump’s right-wing extremists on the Supreme Court have gutted our constitutional right to abortion care, and Congress must do everything in its power to restore and expand our fundamental freedom to control our bodies and our futures. In Pennsylvania, the only thing stopping Republican extremists like Doug Mastriano in the state legislature from criminalizing abortion care is our narrow State House majority and Governor Shapiro’s veto. But the reality is that the same PA Republicans working to criminalize abortion have long shut out Black, brown, poor, working class, and rural folks from reproductive care–long before Trump’s SCOTUS overturned Roe.>

With Roe gone and Trump’s Supreme Court now preparing to decide a case to ban medicated abortion nationwide, including in Pennsylvania, we cannot rely on a patchwork of state-level rights. We need to protect abortion rights and guarantee access to reproductive health care at the federal level.>

In Congress, I’m a proud member of Pro-Choice Caucus and am fighting to:

Make no mistake, abortion bans and attempts to chip away our reproductive rights are attacks that fall hardest on the most marginalized Black and brown communities that already lack necessary access to care. Right now the maternal mortality rate for Black women is four times higher than it is for white women>

In Pennsylvania specifically, African American women are three times more likely to die during or after pregnancy than white women. Black women in Pittsburgh are more likely to die during pregnancy than their peers in 97 percent of U.S. cities. Here are some of the actions I’ve taken:>

  • Early in my first term, I helped issue a report on the Maternal Health Crisis and Access to Midwife Care with my colleagues on the House Oversight Committee, the Congressional Black Caucus, and the Government Accountability Office (GAO) – detailing the need to invest in midwifery health care coverage, midwifery education programs, and support for midwifery workforce to address the Black maternal health crisis.
  • I’m fighting to pass the Black Maternal Health Momnibus Act to end the Black maternal health epidemic critical investments in the social determinants of health, extend WIC eligibility, provide funding for community-based organizations, improve maternal health care for veterans, invest to grow and diversify the perinatal workforce, improve data collection, support maternal mental health, improve maternal health care and support for incarcerated moms, and so much more to address the maternal health crisis that disproportionately affects Black women across the country.

Members of the LGBTQ+ community - particularly trans women of color and non-binary people - also experience major disparities in sexual and reproductive health care and worse health outcomes overall. We need to address these inequities in healthcare access and outcomes to ensure that all people have access to safe, inclusive, and affordable health care, as is their human right.

PA-12 is one of the most dense areas in the country with veterans. It is a uniquely Western Pennsylvanian value to sacrifice oneself in service of their country and others. However, far too often, the federal government fails veterans with 35,000+ veterans nationwide experiencing homelessness, and many more struggling to make ends meet, or receive sufficient care. I’ve made fighting to keep our promises to our veterans one of my main focuses in office, including:

Joining Senator Casey, Rep. Deluzio calling on Veterans Affairs Pittsburgh Healthcare System (VAPHS) to address long-standing problems https://summerlee.house.gov/posts/rep-lee-joins-senator-casey-rep-deluzio-call-on-veterans-affairs-pittsburgh-healthcare-system-vaphs-to-address-long-standing-problems

Western Pennsylvania has been ground-zero in dealing with our nation’s crumbling infrastructure–with insufficient public transit with infrequent service, continued traffic congestion issues that keep us from our loved ones, sources of energy that continue to pollute our air and water, and public spaces in need of rehabilitation.

I’m proud that, through the Inflation Reduction Act and the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, our office has helped secure grants to ensure projects