In front of a room full of residents of an
On Monday morning, Cardin addressed the recent mass shootings in
"People's lives lost by a white supremacist nationalist who believes in hate and acting out on hate," Cardin said. "We have seen this happen too frequently in our community, way too frequently. We saw it in
"This is a national public health crisis," Cardin said about gun violence.
In less than 24 hours, 30 people were killed and nearly 50 injured in two mass shootings this past weekend. The
Though Cardin's main focus was to have an open town hall, he first called for more action.
"We need to act - we should've acted years ago. We cannot just continue to say the problem is too difficult to deal with. We have got to show the American people, and the world, that we are prepared to do everything we can to keep people safe," he explained.
Cardin said there is no "justification for private ownership of assault weapons," and that the weapons should be removed from the public and the room applauded. He also called for universal background checks and said that though there is more to do, these are important steps, he said.
In addition to gun violence, Cardin also reviewed his plans for health care by working more on the Affordable Care Act instead of replacing it with different legislation like Medicare for All.
"I want to protect the protections for pre-existing conditions. I want to move forward in getting prescription drug costs reduced. I want a public option under the Affordable Care Act so those who don't like the private insurance marketplace can have the government insurance plan that they know will be there, year after year, with no fear of it leaving the market," Cardin said to The Capital after the town hall.
Residents asked him questions ranging from stronger legislation to tackling infrastructure, voting, prescription costs for generic medication, gun violence and Medicare for All.
One resident also asked about
Cardin called the president's comments an attempt "to distract from the merits of the argument" provided by Cummings.
He pointed out that along with his wife, they walk around the city and recently noticed an increase of young people and young families - a sign that the city could thrive. Still, Cardin did address that there are challenges in the city like quality of education, housing needs, drug problems and gun violence.
Later in the day, Cardin also sat down with health officials from
In the meeting, Cardin asked about the Maryland Medicaid waiver program, which provides for more in-home care as opposed to hospital care, and possible changes the officials would like to see in healthcare policies. The response was for stability.
The Senior Vice President and Clinical Integration and Chief Operating Officer
"The concept of stability gives us the opportunity to develop those partnerships or relationships and work with our patients to get the results that we all want," McCollum said.
Hospital officials also discussed a rising challenge for the hospital, when guardians relinquish medical rights over their family member and the hospital cannot discharge them until finding a place to care for the individual.
"We have seen an increase in the number of patients who are coming, who don't have anyone who can make decisions about their healthcare,"
Both Olscamp and McCollum agreed that the long process for these patients then presents a challenge.
"It is not only a disservice to that individual that they are in the wrong care setting, but they are using capacity that otherwise would be available to others who really need it for medical needs," McCollum said.