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  • Home | Costello for Senate

    JOIN US In Fighting For Real Change and Progress DONATE SUBSCRIBE VOLUNTEER To Substantially Strengthen our Democracy, Government, and Economy We Need to Think Bigger and Act Boldly Friends: For generations, we Americans have labored to establish a more just, secure, and prosperous nation. One in which all are treated fairly, and all are provided with the opportunity to excel. And while we have made considerable progress over the years, we have yet to establish the kind of more perfect union envisioned by our most thoughtful founders and descendants. ​ We have fallen short, in large part, because our governing infrastructure is as outdated as many of our roads, ports, and bridges. Partisan gridlock, government dysfunction, and political disinformation abound, and our imperfect democracy is in danger of becoming even more flawed. Strengthening Democracy and Governance To fix this, we need to do more than simply changing who we elect every two to six years. We need to think bigger and act boldly. More specifically, we need to substantially reform our governing practices and institutions and eliminate the excessive and corrupting influence that money, wealth, and misinformation have over our politics and government. ​ I am running for the United States Senate because I want to help in furthering this critical work by advancing long overdue legislative and constitutional reforms that will not only aid in strengthening our democracy and economy, but also help in protecting our rights (including women's reproductive rights) and freedoms, and assist in addressing such pressing problems as climate change, uneven economic prosperity, inadequate health care, shoddy infrastructure, underperforming schools, and insufficient retirement security. Doing More for Maine I am also running because I want to help in ensuring that all Mainers have access to affordable, quality healthcare and are provided with the education, job skills, and other life enriching opportunities to thrive. Having grown up in Old Town in a working-class family, I can appreciate the challenges confronting many of Maine’s less affluent families. For too long, too many Maine communities have watched the promise of the next generation slip away for lack of good paying jobs and career prospects. As Maine’s Senator, I will fight for more funding for education and worker training programs; transportation, clean energy, and communications infrastructure; and innovative economic and community development initiatives. Ideas Matter - So Too Does Experience. With more than twenty-five years of senior-level government experience, I believe that I have the knowledge and skills necessary to make a meaningful difference in Washington. During my career, I have managed complex, multi-million dollar programs and operations including initiatives to combat climate change, revitalize communities, protect public health and the environment, and advance peaceful democratic change in such conflict-torn countries as Cambodia, Haiti, Bosnia, Croatia, Serbia, and Kosovo. In closing, I would a dd that I am the proud son of an Army veteran and AFL-CIO organizer and grandson of French and Irish American shoe, textile, and railroad workers. I know the value of hard work. I understand the importance of a solid education, and I appreciate the constructive role that democratic government is obliged to play. I will work hard for every vote, and I ask for your support. Thank you. David ​ P.S. Please check out my ambitious Reform Agenda and Policy Priorities pages for more detail. ​ LATEST NEWS Link to full article IT'S TIME TO FIX WASHINGTON January 17, 2024 We need wholesale change in Congress and constitutional reforms to really create a government representative of and responsive to its citizenry. Link to full article MAINE VOICES: TOO HOT TO IGNORE – MUCH MORE ACTION IS NEEDED TO FIGHT CLIMATE CHANGE August 17, 2023 We need to immediately develop and implement an aggressive national, science-based climate plan, including a panel that evaluates and reports on our progress and recommends needed adjustments. Read more DEMOCRATIC SENATE CANDIDATE DAVID COSTELLO SAYS AN ALL THE ABOVE APPROACH WOULD LIKELY WORK BEST TO TACKLE GUN VIOLENCE IN THE UNITED STATES June 26, 2023 Like many Mainers, I grew up learning to hunt and shoot and to handle guns safely and responsibly. I took gun safety very seriously then and, given the long-standing rise in gun violence, I take it even more seriously today.When people talk of gun safety today, hunting, target shooting, and gun ownership are seldom, if ever, really at issue. At issue, is the proliferation in the sale and violent misuse of non-hunting guns and magazines and the counterproductive weakening and rejection of laws designed to reduce gun violence. While I would never support denying responsible, law-abiding citizens their right to own a gun, I do support markedly strengthening our nation’s gun safety laws and regulations. Gun violence is on the rise throughout the United States, and appallingly, since 2020, it has surpassed car accidents as the leading cause of death for American children. The fact that the U.S. House and Senate have done little over the last 30 years to address gun violence is unconscionable. Everything that can be done - from expanded mental health services, stricter gun crime sentencing, and increased community policing to waiting periods, universal background checks, and assault weapons bans – should be done to reduce gun related deaths, injuries, and crime in the United States. To continue to do less is unacceptable. Read more DEMOCRATIC U.S. SENATE CANDIDATE DAVID COSTELLO URGES SUPPORT FOR TRIBAL SOVEREIGNTY FOR MAINE'S FOUR INDIGENOUS TRIBES June 26, 2023 Brunswick – Democratic Senate Candidate David Costello today released a statement urging support for tribal sovereignty for Maine’s four indigenous tribes. Costello stated, “unlike the Nation’s other 570 federally recognized tribes, Maine’s Penobscot, Maliseet, Mi’kmaq, and Passamaquoddy tribes are unnecessarily and detrimentally excluded from automatically receiving a range of federal health care, economic development, environmental protection, emergency response assistance, and other benefits.” Costello noted that a recent Harvard University study concluded that tribal self-determination and government has contributed to significant economic growth and other benefits for the vast majority of other indigenous tribes in the United States. Additionally, and importantly for many rural towns and villages in Maine, the study also concluded that there were significant spill-over benefits for neighboring non-tribal communities. Costello added that the study found: “Unique to Maine, the federal Maine Indian Claims Settlement Act of 1980 (MICSA) empowers the state government to block the applicability of federal Indian policy in Maine. As a result, the development of the Wabanaki Nations’ economies and governmental capacities have been stunted. Today, all four of the tribes in Maine—Maliseet, Mi’kmaq, Passamaquoddy, and Penobscot—are stark economic underperformers relative to the other tribes in the Lower 48 states. The subjugation of the Wabanaki Nation’s self-governing capacities is blocking economic development to the detriment of both tribal and non- tribal citizens, alike. For the tribal citizens of Maine held down by MICSA’s restrictions, loosening or removing those restrictions offers them little in the way of downside risks and but much in the way of upside payoffs. Importantly, we find in this study that “nowhere to go but up” also applies to the Maine state government and Maine’s non-tribal citizens. From case after case, the pattern that has emerged under federal policies of tribal self-determination through self-government is one in which tribal economic development spills over positively into neighboring non-tribal communities and improves the abilities of state and local governments to serve their citizens.” Costello concluded, “As the study emphasizes, there is ‘nowhere to go but up’ for Maine and Maine communities and thus there is unlikely to be any substantial downside to granting tribal sovereignty to Maine’s four tribes. Moreover, granting Maine's tribes sovereignty is long overdue and the right thing to do both morally and ethically.” Read more U.S. SENATE CANDIDATE DAVID COSTELLO'S OP-ED June 13, 2023 To Truly Fix Washington, We Must Substantially Overhaul Our Governing Practices and Institutions For generations, we Americans have labored to establish a more just, secure, and prosperous nation. One in which all are treated fairly and all are provided with the opportunity to excel. And while we have made considerable progress over the years, we have yet to establish the kind of more perfect union envisioned by our most thoughtful founders and descendants. We have fallen short, in large part, because our governing infrastructure is as deficient and outdated as many of our roads, ports, and bridges. Partisan gridlock abounds, and our imperfect democracy is in danger of becoming even more flawed. The latest example being Washington’s current battle over the Nation’s debt limit. To fix Washington, we need to do more than simply change who we elect every two to six years. We need to substantially reform our governing practices and institutions, and we need to eliminate the excessive and corrupting influence that money, wealth, and disinformation have over our politics and government. Specifically, we should, in the near term: · Pass the Freedom to Vote Act. · Ban gerrymandering and eliminate the Senate’s filibuster.​​ · ​Establish an independent Government Accountability and Performance Commission. · Impose term limits and retirement age requirements on federal judges, including Supreme Court justices. ​ · Increase funding for non-partisan public news broadcasting. · Require social media platforms to adhere to reasonable public interest rules. · Ratify the “For Our Freedom Amendment” to better regulate campaign contributions and spending. ​​And, over the longer term: · Abolish the Electoral College and establish a system of directly electing presidents and include ranked choice voting (RCV) when there are more than two candidates. · Restructure the U.S. Senate so that its allocation of power is more in-line with a state’s population. · Overhaul the U.S. House so that it is comprised of non-gerrymandered, multi-winner districts. · Revise the terms and impose 24-year term limits on U.S. senators and representatives. · Streamline the U.S. Constitution’s amendment process so that it is no longer virtually impossible to update our national charter. Specifically, modify the amendment process to require no more than 60% approval from both houses of Congress and ratifying support from states representing 62% or more of the nation’s population. While pursuing and achieving these reforms will not be easy, the potential benefits of doing so — including better-protected rights and freedoms and more adequately addressed problems like climate change, economic inequality, inadequate health care, shoddy infrastructure, underperforming schools, and insufficient retirement security — make attempting to pursue and achieve them well worth the effort. By David Costello Democratic Candidate for the U.S. Senate www.costelloforsenate.com Read more GOVERNMENT REFORM ADVOCATE ENTERS RACE FOR THE UNITED STATES SENATE April 12, 2023 Brunswick – Government reform advocate and Brunswick resident, David Costello, announced today that he is entering the race for the United States Senate. A native of Old Town, Costello returned to Maine in 2019 after having served as a senior aide to the mayor of Baltimore and governor of Maryland and having helped to manage Maryland’s environmental protection agency (MDE). Prior to working in Maryland, Costello worked largely overseas for the U.S. Government, responding to political, economic, and humanitarian crises in Cambodia, Haiti, Bosnia, Croatia, Serbia, and Kosovo. Costello said that he has decided to run for the U.S. Senate because, “like many Mainers, he’s grown tired of the level of acrimony and dysfunction in Washington and Congress’s inability to act and to act in ways that serve the best interests of all Americans.” “For generations,” Costello added, “we Americans have labored to establish a more just, secure, and prosperous nation. And while we’ve made considerable progress over the years, we have yet to establish the kind of more perfect union envisioned by our most thoughtful founders and descendants.” Costello contends that “we have fallen short, in large part, because our governing infrastructure is as outdated as many of our roads, ports, and bridges. Partisan gridlock, government ineffectiveness, and political disinformation abound, and our imperfect democracy is in danger of becoming even more flawed.” “To fix Washington,” Costello argues “we need to do more than simply changing who we elect every two to six years. We need to think bigger and act boldly to substantially reform our governing practices and institutions, and eliminate the excessive and corrupting influence that money, wealth, and misinformation have over our politics and government.” Costello further added that he is running because he wants “to help in advancing long overdue legislative and constitutional reforms. Reforms that will not only aid in strengthening our democracy, government, and economy, but also help in protecting our rights and freedoms, and assist in addressing such pressing problems as climate change, uneven economic prosperity, inadequate health insurance, shoddy infrastructure, underperforming schools, and insufficient retirement security.” Costello, a democrat, attended the University of Maine in Orono and is a graduate of the George Washington University and London School of Economics and Political Science. For more detail on Costello’s ambitious reform agenda and policy priorities visit www.costelloforsenate.com. FOLLOW DAVID ON SOCIAL MEDIA Subscribe

  • Get Involved | Costello for Senate

    GET INVOLVED Join David, Sign Up Now WAYS TO HELP Tell us how you’d like to get involved, a member of our team will get in touch soon Knock on Doors Make Calls Social Media Blitz Host Fundraiser SUBMIT Thanks for submitting!

  • In the Media | Costello for Senate

    In the Media Announcement Press Release Gun Safety Tribal Statement Climate Action

  • Social Security | Costello for Senate

    Enhancing Retirement Security ​ David will help in strengthening Social Security and overall retirement security by supporting efforts to: Raise the FICA payroll tax cap. Provide increased benefits to low-income retirees. Establish a sovereign wealth fund to help in funding Social Security and Medicare. Back the expansion of government incentivized retirement savings and investment accounts for working- and middle-class Americans to supplement Social Security. ​ ​

  • About | Costello for Senate

    ABOUT DAVID Growing Up in Old Town David was born in Bangor and raised in Old Town by his mother Gail and maternal grandparents, Alfred and Pauline Pelletier B aillargeon. David’s father John, an Army veteran and AFL-CIO organizer, died in 1968 at the age of thirty-one. ​ David is t he grandson of French and Irish American shoe, textile, and railroad workers. And like many in Maine, he was the first in his family to attend a four year college and to earn a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree – having worked his way through the University of Maine, George Washington University, and London School of Economics and Political Science. A Career of Service David has more than twenty-five years of senior-leve l state, local, and federal go vernment experience. Inspired by participating in picket lines as a boy, David became active in politics in his late teens. Leaving college at the age of nineteen, David served on Senator Ted Kennedy’s national field staff in 1980. He subsequently worked on two additional national presidential campaigns and locally on U.S. Senate, U.S. House, and Maine gubernatorial campaigns into the early 1990s. David visiting a village in northeastern Haiti to assess a community water project (1995). David with Senator Ted Kennedy, Senator William Hathaway, and Boston Bruins Wayne Cashman and Johny Bucyk (1980). David served as a top aide to Maine Secretary of State Bill Diamond in the early 1990s, helping to develop and implement elections, campaign finance, and motor vehicle administration and safety reforms. Between 1993 and 2001, David worked prim arily abroad for the U.S. government, responding to political, humanitarian, and economic crises in conflict-torn Cambodia, Haiti, Bosnia, Croatia, Serbia, and Kosovo. David being sworn in as a Deputy Secretary of State by Maine Secretary of State Bill Diamond (1989). David, Serbia's Deputy Prime Minister, U.S. Ambassador to Yugoslavia, and local Serbian and Albanian leaders sign community improvement grants in Serbia's conflict-ridden Presevo Valley (2001). David crossing the Mekong River in Cambodia following an election coordination meeting in Kampong Cham (1993). David inspecting a Kosovar Albanian home that had been destroyed by Serbian nationalists in western Kosovo (1998). In the early to middle 2000s, David served as a top aide to the Mayor of Baltimore directing collaborative efforts to improve the City’s schools and address the needs of Baltimore’s at-risk children, youth, and families. Between 2007 and 2011, David worked as a senior aide to the Governor of Maryland, managing state efforts to devise and implement cross-agency plans and programs to achieve ambitious job creation, crime reduction, workforce development, student achievement, substance abuse treatment, environmental protection, clean energy, and sustainable development goals. David, Mayor Martin O'Malley, and public works staff participate in a Baltimore City school improvement project (2004). David and Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley discussing agenda items at an economic transition event (2011). David with Delaware Senator Chris Coons and EPA and Delaware officials highlighting upgrades to a sewage treatment plant in Delmar, Delaware/Maryland (2014). From 2011 - 2015, David served as a Deputy and Acting Secretary of the Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) helping to manage MDE’s 1,000+ employees, various programs, and $380 million annual budget. In addition to his government work, David more recently directed two non-governmental climate action projects in Maryland and served as an interim climate and clean energy program director at the Natural Resources Council of Maine (NRCM). David participating with senior Maryland officials at a Chesapeake Bay restoration status meeting in Annapolis, Maryland (2010). Family David resides in Brunswick with his wife, children, and beagle Stella.

  • Gun Safety Statement | Costello for Senate

    Democratic Senate Candidate David Costello Says an All the Above Approach Would Likely Work Best to Tackle Gun Violence in the United States June 26, 2023 ​ Like many Mainers, I grew up learning to hunt and shoot and to handle guns safely and responsibly. I took gun safety very seriously then and, given the long-standing rise in gun violence, I take it even more seriously today. When people talk of gun safety today, hunting, target shooting, and gun ownership are seldom, if ever, really at issue. At issue is the proliferation in the sale and violent misuse of non-hunting guns and magazines and the counterproductive weakening and rejection of laws designed to reduce gun violence. While I would never support denying responsible, law-abiding citizens their right to own a gun, I do support markedly strengthening our nation’s gun safety laws and regulations. Gun violence is on the rise throughout the United States, and appallingly, since 2020, it has surpassed car accidents as the leading cause of death for American children. The fact that the U.S. House and Senate have done little over the last 30 years to address gun violence is unconscionable. Everything that can be done - from expanded mental health services, stricter gun crime sentencing, and increased community policing to waiting periods, universal background checks, and assault weapons bans – should be done to reduce gun-related deaths, injuries, and crime in the United States. Most Americans agree. To continue to do less is unacceptable. Document

  • Policy Priorities | Costello for Senate

    A Summary of David's Key Public Policy Priorities As Maine's Senator, David will work to help in advancing a number of very important administrative reform s and legislative initiatives, many of which are summarized below. Economy Environment National Security Health Care Civil Rights and Equality Public Safety Climate Change Retirement Security Immigration

  • Tribal Statement | Costello for Senate

    Democratic U.S. Senate Candidate David Costello Urges Support for Tribal Sovereignty for Maine’s Four Indigenous Tribes June 26, 2023 Brunswick – Democratic Senate Candidate David Costello today released a statement urging support for tribal sovereignty for Maine’s four indigenous tribes. Costello stated, “unlike the Nation’s other 570 federally recognized tribes, Maine’s Penobscot, Maliseet, Mi’kmaq, and Passamaquoddy tribes are unnecessarily and detrimentally excluded from automatically receiving a range of federal health care, economic development, environmental protection, emergency response assistance and other benefits.” Costello noted that a recent Harvard University study concluded that tribal self-determination and government has contributed to significant economic growth and other benefits for the vast majority of other indigenous tribes in the United States. Additionally, and importantly for many rural towns and villages in Maine, the study also concluded that there were considerable spill-over benefits for neighboring non-tribal communities. Costello added that the study found: ​ “Unique to Maine, the federal Maine Indian Claims Settlement Act of 1980 (MICSA) empowers the state government to block the applicability of federal Indian policy in Maine. As a result, the development of the Wabanaki Nations’ economies and governmental capacities have been stunted. Today, all four of the tribes in Maine—Maliseet, Mi’kmaq, Passamaquoddy, and Penobscot—are stark economic underperformers relative to the other tribes in the Lower 48 states. ​ The subjugation of the Wabanaki Nation’s self-governing capacities is blocking economic development to the detriment of both tribal and non-tribal citizens, alike. For the tribal citizens of Maine held down by MICSA’s restrictions, loosening or removing those restrictions offers them little in the way of downside risks and but much in the way of upside payoffs. ​ Importantly, we find in this study that “nowhere to go but up” also applies to the Maine state government and Maine’s non-tribal citizens. From case after case, the pattern that has emerged under federal policies of tribal self-determination through self-government is one in which tribal economic development spills over positively into neighboring non-tribal communities and improves the abilities of state and local governments to serve their citizens.” Costello concluded, “As the study emphasizes, there is ‘nowhere to go but up’ for Maine and Maine communities and thus there is unlikely to be any downside to granting tribal sovereignty to Maine’s four tribes. Moreover, granting sovereignty to Maine's tribes is long overdue and is the right thing to do both morally and ethically.”

  • Health Care | Costello for Senate

    Health Care David will help in guaranteeing adequate and affordable health care by supporting efforts to: Offer Medicare, including dental and vision care, to all who want it. Improve existing Affordable Care Act and other federal healthcare provisions for those who choose not to enroll in Medicare.

  • National Security | Costello for Senate

    Strengthening National Security David will help in bolstering national security by supporting efforts to: Maintain military and intelligence gathering superiority over all potential rivals, especially China and Russia. Expand military and intelligence gathering alliances. Strengthen trade and foreign policy agencies and agreements. Become more fully, intelligently, and responsibly engaged in world affairs. Boost our nation's overall global economic competitiveness.

  • Press Release | Costello for Senate

    GOVERNMENT REFORM ADVOCATE TO ENTER RACE FOR THE UNITED STATES SENATE April 12, 2023 ​ Brunswick – Government reform advocate and Brunswick resident, David Costello, announced today that he is entering the race for the United States Senate. A native of Old Town, Costello returned to Maine in 2019 after having served as a senior aide to the mayor of Baltimore and governor of Maryland and having helped to manage Maryland’s environmental protection agency (MDE). Prior to working in Maryland, Costello worked largely overseas for the U.S. Government, responding to political, economic, and humanitarian crises in Cambodia, Haiti, Bosnia, Croatia, Serbia, and Kosovo. Costello said that he has decided to run for the U.S. Senate because, “like many Mainers, he’s grown tired of the level of acrimony and dysfunction in Washington and Congress’s inability to act and to act in ways that serve the best interests of all Americans.” “For generations,” Costello added, “we Americans have labored to establish a more just, secure, and prosperous nation. And while we’ve made considerable progress over the years, we have yet to establish the kind of more perfect union envisioned by our most thoughtful founders and descendants.” Costello contends that “we have fallen short, in large part, because our governing infrastructure is as outdated as many of our roads, ports, and bridges. Partisan gridlock, government ineffectiveness, and political disinformation abound, and our imperfect democracy is in danger of becoming even more flawed.” “To fix Washington,” Costello argues “we need to do more than simply changing who we elect every two to six years. We need to think bigger and act boldly to substantially reform our governing practices and institutions, and eliminate the excessive and corrupting influence that money, wealth, and misinformation have over our politics and government.” Costello further added that he is running because he wants “to help in advancing long overdue legislative and constitutional reforms. Reforms that will not only aid in strengthening our democracy, government, and economy, but also help in protecting our rights and freedoms, and assist in addressing such pressing problems as climate change, uneven economic prosperity, inadequate health insurance, shoddy infrastructure, underperforming schools, and insufficient retirement security.” Costello, a democrat, attended the University of Maine in Orono and is a graduate of the George Washington University and London School of Economics and Political Science. For more detail on Costello’s ambitious reform agenda and policy priorities visit www.costelloforsenate.com . Document

  • Climate Change | Costello for Senate

    Adequately Addressing Climate Change ​ David will help in adequately addressing climate change by supporting efforts to: D evelop and implement an aggressive national, science-based climate action plan that includes, among other components: strict greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions caps; ambitious GHG sequestration and "draw down" goals and actions; expanded clean energy, clean transportation, and energy efficiency initiatives; smarter development and land use regulations; greener appliance and building construction standards; and increased funding to mitigate the growing impacts of climate change.

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