Mar 7, 2024

The steady rain should die down by the afternoon commute, but you’ll want a rain jacket this morning (or you’ll end up as waterlogged as the U.S. women’s soccer team’s pitch last night). To the news:

Be our guest: President Joe Biden’s State of the Union address is tonight, and you may see a few local faces in the crowd, in addition to Massachusetts’ congressional delegation. As has become tradition, the state’s 11 members of the House and Senate are bringing guests to the speech — often to make a point about a particular policy or priority. As WBUR’s Max Larkin reportsRep. Ayanna Pressley is bringing Boston Public Schools teacher Priscilla Valentine to highlight Biden’s recent tweaks to the federal student loan forgiveness programs. For 20 years, Valentine juggled student-loan payments with daycare costs and rent. As of last year, the amount she owed had only grown. However, all $117,000 of her debt was canceled after the Biden administration expanded a forgiveness program for public service workers. Scroll below for more notable local State of the Union guests:

  • Sen. Elizabeth Warren is bringing fellow Cantabrigian and former BPS teacher Benadette Manning, who also got college debt forgiven thanks to the new federal loan forgiveness program.
  • SenEd Markey is bringing local union leader Lou Antonellis, who Markey says has helped position the commonwealth to be at the “forefront” of creating green union jobs and transitioning to sustainable construction practices. (Coincidentally, Antonellis was also at the forefront of former Rep. Joe Kennedy’s bid to unseat Markey.)
  • RepSeth Moulton is bringing Oleksandra Kovalchuk — a Ukrainian museum director and former elected official who fled to his hometown of Salem — to raise awareness of the “profound human and cultural costs of Russia’s war.”
  • RepLori Trahan is bringing Dr. Pietro Bortoletto, a top doctor at the local in vitro fertilization practice where she underwent treatment for “five long years” to have her two daughters. She’s hoping to promote her push to codify the right to IVF at the national level.
  • RepJake Auchincloss is bringing Brookline resident Myrieme Nadri-Churchill, the leader of the anti-extremism group Parent for Peace, to promote his new bill to require social media companies to increase privacy and age verification protections for kids.
  • Bonus: Massachusetts native Elizabeth Carr, the U.S.’s first IVF baby, is the guest of Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine, who quoted Carr’s recent Cognoscenti essay during a Senate floor speech this week.

Read the full article at WBUR.

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