Labor-backed Progressives Win Across Maryland

July 16, 2018

1199SEIU celebrates wins of Ben Jealous, Arthur Ellis, Angela Alsobrooks, Marilyn Mosby and other endorsed-candidates

Annapolis, Md. (June 27, 2018) – Members of 1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East played a key role in Maryland’s primary election yesterday, helping union-endorsed candidates win several important races, including Ben Jealous as the Democratic gubernatorial nominee. The results demonstrate the power of workers standing together.

“Our members have once again proven that putting boots on the ground gets results,” said Pat Lippold, vice president of 1199SEIU. “We are thrilled that Ben Jealous will take on Governor Hogan in the fall. He is committed to improving the lives of working families by fighting to raise the minimum wage and supporting quality jobs — issues that matters to our members and all Marylanders.”

1199SEIU was one of several organizations that urged Jealous to enter the race, endorsing him early in the campaign. Every day for the past two months, dozens of 1199SEIU members knocked on doors and made phones calls in Baltimore City and Baltimore and Prince George’s counties on his behalf. On weekends, close to 40 volunteers canvassed to drum up support and get out the vote.

In a surprising victory, Senate Finance Chairman Thomas M. “Mac” Middleton lost his seat to 1199SEIU-endorsed candidate Arthur Ellis. 1199SEIU sent multiple mailings and ran ads promoting Ellis in local papers.

And in another major upset brought about by “purple power,” Senator Joan Carter Conway is trailing by more than 500 votes to 1199SEIU-backed Mary Washington for the 43rd District Senate seat. Members knocked on doors and the union sent multiple mailings to educate voters about Washington’s key platforms and encourage them to vote.

In deciding which candidates to support, the union looks for a commitment to improving the lives of workers and their families.

“Too many of our members and other low-wage workers aren’t just treading water, they are drowning,” said Lippold. “The good news is that a lot of the fresh faces we endorsed this election cycle are one step closer to heading to Annapolis to fix what is broken. We are confident they will bring new energy and progressive ideas, including support for living wages, quality healthcare and economic and justice, to Annapolis.”

1199SEIU also endorsed Antonio Hayes (District 40) and Cory McCray (District 45,) who both won the nominations for Senate seats in Baltimore City and Baltimore County, respectively. 1199 worked alongside several progressive unions and allies to help them win.

“Cory McCray is an especially gifted legislator and he will be a fighter for all workers,” said Shaniqua Covington, Johns Hopkins Hospital operating room associate and member of 1199SEIU. “I was proud to support Cory — he is active in his community and has shown us that there are other pathways to success other than college, like apprenticeship programs.”

In yet another union win, Veronica Turner, the president of a union that later merged with 1199SEIU, won the nomination for State Delegate in District 26. 1199SEIU believes Turner will be a fierce advocate for Prince George’s County healthcare workers and their families when she returns to the House of Delegates.

Union leadership and members were also early supporters of Angela Alsobrooks, who won the primary for Prince George’s County Executive yesterday; and Marilyn Mosby, who won the nomination for Baltimore City State's Attorney.

1199SEIU was also a major player in Maryland Together We Rise, an independent expenditure campaign advocating for Jealous. The campaign placed ads with cable television stations in southern Maryland, including Bravo, CNN, TNT and USA Network. Maryland Together We Rise also ran radio and digital ads across the state and paid for a robust mail and phone banking effort.


With over 450,000 caregivers, 1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East is the largest and fastest-growing healthcare union in America. The 1199SEIU Maryland/DC Division represents over 10,000 members who work in major academic medical centers, health clinics and other hospitals and dozens of long-term care facilities in Baltimore, Washington D.C. and throughout Maryland.