Newly representing District 30 in the State Senate, Warwick Democrat Jeanine Calkin got her political start in 2016 working for Bernie Sanders’ presidential campaign. After many years working various IT jobs, Calkin felt called to action by Sanders and founded Rhode Island for Bernie Sanders, an organization coordinating the ultimately successful Sanders primary campaign in the state. Working with her local community in the aftermath of Sanders’ defeat in the primary nationwide, Calkin felt a desire to run against then-incumbent conservative Democrat William Walaska.
Much like Sanders, Calkin is a progressive Democrat who aims to to be a voice of working people in her district. In the upcoming legislative session, Calkin plans to focus on paid sick leave and family leave, as well as creating a state single-payer healthcare system and protecting women’s reproductive rights.
On economic issues, Calkin wants to see the state’s minimum wage raised to $15. She is also an advocate for preserving Social Security and seniors’ rights in Rhode Island.
Finally, Calkin wants to see Rhode Island become more environmentally friendly. She supports expanding state funding for renewable and alternative energy sources. She also backs a tax on carbon emissions and incentivizing renewable energy sources with tax rebates.