Friday, July 20, 2012

Details on Sen. Brian Frosh's 2014 Attorney General Campaign // Analysis of Impact on Judiciary Committee & Senate Presidency

Yesterday we reported that State Senator Brian Frosh was plotting a run for Maryland Attorney General in 2014. Frosh, a Democrat, subsequently confirmed by email that he was indeed "exploring a race for AG" and "still reaching out to folks." That news set the pundit-class abuzz, as numerous politicos began pondering the implications of this move. Below we highlight a few notable analyses and comments about Senator Frosh's news.

GUN RIGHTS ADVOCATES WEIGH IN: Among the first to respond to the news was former Aberdeen Mayoral candidate Patrick McGrady, a Tea Partier. McGrady posted his thoughts about Frosh's AG bid on, a gun-oriented site that describes itself as "Maryland's premiere shooting community." He raised red flags for gun-owners about Brian Frosh, and many responded with their thoughts:

PATRICK MCGRADY: Gun Grabber Sen. Frosh planning Attorney General run in 2014 - This does not bode well for the future. Super 'progressive' gun grabbing Frosh never saw a gun law he didn't like. If he is the AG, we can likely say goodbye to any 2nd amendment rights in MD. 
SHOOTER #1: No guarantee he'd win and the upside is that he'd cede his seat on the Senate committee and give up any chance of being Senate president. Succeeding Mike Miller would be far more dangerous to us.

SHOOTER #2: I do wonder what his long term goal is. Does he want to be Governor or U.S. Senator? He is without a doubt our most passionate real threat. He doesn't disagree with us, he passionately HATES us.
Unfortunately for the members of, my suspicion is that Brian Frosh's passion for gun control will be an asset in a Democratic Primary. After all, Maryland's Democrat-dominated electorate is not known to be strongly pro-gun.

DETAILS ABOUT THE DECISION // FROSH & RASKIN SWITCHEROO?: A number of news outlets conducted follow-up interviews with Frosh and others that brought new details to light. See a few examples below, starting with an Associated Press interview with Frosh and Senator Jamie Raskin:
ASSOCIATED PRESS: “Yes, I’m exploring a race for attorney general...." Frosh, 65, said he made the decision after speaking with Sen. Jamie Raskin.... Frosh said he had supported a Raskin candidacy for attorney general, but that the two decided on switching positions after talking.

Raskin confirmed that in a telephone interview on Thursday.... Raskin said he believes it’s the perfect time for Frosh.... “And to me, he seems like the natural pick, and so I’m thrilled if he runs, and I will be an ardent supporter.”
The Baltimore Sun's Annie Linskey also made this comment about political geography and the potential Judiciary vacancy:
BALTIMORE SUN: ....[Frosh] has chaired JPR since 2003, and should he run, he'll leave a vacancy at the helm of the powerful committee. Baltimore Sen. Lisa Gladden is the vice chair, though should she be promoted, it would mean Baltimore would have two chairmanships and Montgomery County would have none.

MOCO STATE'S ATTORNEY JOHN MCCARTHY RESPONDS: Meanwhile, the Daily Record carried commentary from potential AG candidate MoCo State's Attorney John McCarthy, along with speculation about the fate of the Senate's judiciary committee:
DAILY RECORD: Frosh said he believes it might be time for him to start enforcing as attorney general the laws that he has helped draft during his 25 years in the General Assembly.... 
That would leave a vacancy at the helm of the Judicial Proceedings Committee, which he has chaired since 2003.

Possible successors include Sens. Lisa A. Gladden, D-Baltimore, the panel’s vice chair; and Jamin B. “Jamie” Raskin....

Montgomery County State’s Attorney John McCarthy said Thursday that he, too, is considering a run for attorney general but that a Frosh candidacy would be a factor he “would have to seriously think about” and might militate against his running....

“I’m just not prepared publicly to decide,” McCarthy said of his own potential run. “I am not prepared to make that decision today."

TEA LEAVES: SENATE PRESIDENT MIKE MILLER? - We conclude this news roundup about Senator Frosh, with the following question from an anonymous, knowledgeable observer of State Senate politics:
SENATE EXPERT: ....what does Frosh's jumping into a statewide race say about the Senate President's plans?
Indeed, Frosh's run for Attorney General is yet another sign that we can expect Senate President Mike Miller to run for re-election in 2014. Meanwhile, I am beginning to hear speculation about potential candidates for District 16 State Senate in 2014. More on that soon!

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