Friday, August 31, 2012

MoCo Democratic Sample Ballot Battle: Councilmember Phil Andrews Fights Redistricting // PLUS: Young Dem on Dream Act

BACKGROUND: Yesterday, Maryland Juice reported that the Montgomery County Democrats have begun the process of assembling a sample ballot mailing for this November's Presidential Election. In addition to candidates for public office, the sample ballot will include the MoCo Dems' recommendations on the numerous referenda being voted on this year. The first big step in this process happened this week, when the "Ballot Question Advisory Committee" heard testimony from a range of MoCo Democratic activists and officials. After debating the referenda, the committee voted to support a vote "FOR" the Dream Act (Question 4) and marriage equality (Question 6). But the "Ballot Question Advisory Committee" voted overwhelmingly to oppose Maryland's Congressional redistricting plan, as well as a proposed expansion of gambling in the Free State. These recommendations will now be provided to the numerous Democratic precinct officials in Montgomery County for ratification or rejection, before the sample ballots gets printed.

A BATTLE OVER THE SAMPLE BALLOT: But Maryland Juice has been hearing that the recommendations are causing some controversy. A handful of MoCo Democratic officials are now threatening to withhold funding for the sample ballot mailing unless some of the recommendations are discarded. The sample ballot mailing, after all, would be sent to nearly a quarter of a million Montgomery County Democrats. Here are a few resources for voters that want to brush up on the key issues:

Thursday, August 30, 2012

MoCo Dems' Committee Recommends Marriage Equality & Dream Act // But Party May Diss Redistricting, Gambling & More

UPDATE: A few politicos are reporting that some Montgomery Democratic elected officials are withholding donations to the sample ballot effort unless some of the recommendations below are reversed. This means we are likely to see some electeds campaigning for precinct officials' support on some of the more controversial referenda.

A reader and member of the MoCo Dems' committee that made the recommendations below also clarifies some of the details: "We're called the Ballot Question Advisory Committee. We make recommendations, but the precinct captain community takes the final vote. Marriage and the DREAM Act were both unanimous votes. The effects bargaining was a draw: 6-7. It's not fair to say it was voted down." Additionally, we now have an accounting of the vote totals for each recommendation. The votes on marriage equality and the Dream Act were unanimously in support, but the opposition to the Congressional districts was also nearly unanimous. See below:

DOUBLE-STANDARD: Feds Moving 450 Treasury Jobs from MD to WV // But NOAA Resists Move of 200 Jobs from MA to MD

WEST VIRGINIA TO GAIN MARYLAND JOBS: The Washington Post yesterday reported that the federal government plans to move 450 Treasury Department jobs out of Prince George's County, Maryland to neighboring West Virginia. The rationale for the "consolidation" is that it would help the agency more efficiently use its facilities (excerpt below):
WASHINGTON POST: The federal government is relocating 450 Treasury Department jobs from Hyattsville to Parkersburg, West Virginia as part of a move to consolidate operations....

According to the General Services Administration, which manages federal real estate, the move will help Treasury meet a directive from President Obama for agencies to more efficiently use their facilities....

After hearing the news from Treasury officials, U.S. Rep. Donna Edwards (D-Md.) issued a press release Wednesday expressing disappointment and suggesting that workers receive help finding new jobs....

Senators Barbara Mikulski and Ben Cardin, as well as Representatives Steny Hoyer, Chris Van Hollen and Elijah E. Cummings, all Democrats, attached statements to Edwards’ also condemned the move.

MASSACHUSETTS TRIES TO RETAIN JOBS MOVING TO MARYLAND: But Senator Barbara Mikulski proposed a similar consolidation of 200 fisheries management jobs from Massachusetts to Montgomery County, Maryland, and that plan is seemingly facing a great deal more resistance. Either the Federal government believes in efficiency through geographic consolidation of its workforce or it doesn't. See excerpts from The Gloucester Times below:
GLOUCESTER TIMES: U.S. Sen. Barbara Mikulski’s idea to relocate the Northeast Regional Office of the National Marine Fisheries Service from Gloucester to near NMFS’ headquarters in Silver Spring, Md., would be costly and “could be disruptive” and inefficient, NOAA reported to Congress this week....

The U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee approved a fiscal 2013 spending plan for NOAA in April that included an amendment to close the Northeast Regional Office in Gloucester and move the bulk of fisheries management, administration and law enforcement to Silver Spring, Md....

Opposition to the move locally was based on the economic impact of having more than 200 of NOAA’s mostly highly paid employees working and living in and near the city....

Will Maryland become the victim of a double-standard when it comes to the Federal government consolidating offices?

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

CD6: GOP Mailer Attacks John Delaney for Polluted Landfill // Delaney Says Not My Dump, Asks Roscoe Bartlett to Denounce

UPDATE: Maryland Juice has confirmed that this mail piece was sent to some Montgomery County Democratic households. Notably, the piece is attacking Delaney on an environmental issue, so clearly the Maryland GOP is feeling the need to try and erode the Democrats' support for their candidate. 

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

LISTEN: 911 Calls from Del. Don Dwyer's Drunk Boating Accident // Witnesses Say Boat "Flying" at "Full Throttle"

Maryland Juice has been following the developing story surrounding GOP lawmaker Don Dwyer's drunk boating accident. Today, WBAL released two tapes of 911 emergency calls made by witnesses to the incident, along with an Associated Press wire story about the calls (excerpt below):
AP: A witness to a boat collision told police a boat operated by a lawmaker was "flying" at "what seemed like full throttle" before a collision that injured seven people....

The Anne Arundel County Fire Department released the audio of six different 911 calls made after the crash which occurred last Wednesday night near Gibson Island....

You can listen to the two shocking calls posted by WBAL below (files in .mp3 format):


Monday, August 27, 2012

CD6: DCCC Robocall Attacks Rep. Roscoe Bartlett for Ties to Rep. Todd Akin's Rape Views // Taped Call Tells Voters to Call Bartlett

Maryland Juice recently printed a series of press releases attacking Rep. Roscoe Bartlett for co-sponsoring controversial laws with Rep. Todd Akin. The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee is now launching a robocall attack into Maryland's 6th Congressional District about the matter. According to, this is a national campaign targeting a number of vulnerable U.S. House Republicans. See the DCCC press release and robocall script below:


DCCC Launches New Advertising Linking Congressman Bartlett
To Congressman Todd Akin's Extremism

Sunday, August 26, 2012

OUCH: Del. Don Dwyer's GOP Colleague Nic Kipke Calls on Him to Resign // PLUS: Readers Weigh In With Commentary

UPDATE: The Capital Gazette has an editorial about the Don Dwyer boating scandal, where they raise the same issues of moral hypocrisy pointed out by Maryland Juice (excerpt below):
CAPITAL GAZETTE: The delegate hasn’t been slow to condemn what he sees as the moral failings of others. Indeed, our problem with him has been not his politics, but that he has always seemed more interested in moralizing from the House floor than in legislating or fighting for his constituents’ interests.

DEL. NIC KIPKE CALLS ON DWYER TO RESIGN: An elected official and Maryland Juice reader has forwarded us news that Delegate Don Dwyer's colleague Del. Nic Kipke is calling on the embattled lawmaker to resign. Dwyer and Kipke both represent legislative District 31, along with Del. Steven Schuh. Kipke's comments appeared in The Capital Gazette (excerpt below):
CAPITAL GAZETTE: One of Del. Don Dwyer’s closest colleagues is urging the Pasadena lawmaker to resign after admitting to consuming alcohol while operating a powerboat involved in a serious accident on the Magothy River on Wednesday.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Another Alleged Scandal w/ Del. Don Dwyer Emerges // GOP Drunk Driver Left Wife & Kids, Church Ex-Communicated Him?

UPDATE: A reader in the comments section explains the manner in which one can become excommunicated from Del. Don Dwyer's church. The alleged adultery was not the issue, rather Dwyer's refusal to explain the adultery potentially led to the church booting him. 
ANONYMOUS READER: Juice, just to make sure you understand what excommunication for contempt of church (or more likely, for leaving fellowship or refusing to obey presbytery leaders in their request for dialogue, is not the same thing as being excommunicated for unrepentant adultery. In th EP church, excommunication means removal from fellowship/membership of that local church. It can be for biblical reasons (i.e. unrepentant sin) or for breaking a covenant with other church members (e.g. Non-attendance). That is to say, your conclusions are making quite a leap.


Pasadena Evangelical Presbyterian Church
MORE "FAMILY VALUES" HYPOCRISY REVEALED: A Maryland Juice reader has sent us allegations of further moral hypocrisy from GOP lawmaker Don Dwyer. Last night we discussed the drunk boating accident involving Maryland's Tea Party Delegate, and we even highlighted Dwyer's dating profile. But as it turns out, there may be a reason that the Republican hypocrite has been cruising the online dating scene. A member of Dwyer's former church, the Pasadena Evangelical Presbyterian Church, alleges that Dwyer left his wife and children, but was excommunicated after failing to explain the circumstances to his church:
ANONYMOUS READER #1: I'm a member at the Church which excommunicated him late Spring. I don't have access to the session minutes, but he was excommunicated for "contumacy" (contempt of church) after he refused to answer why he abandoned his wife and kids and started sleeping around.
Notably, the website for Dwyer's church highlights a focus on the family (excerpt below):

Friday, August 24, 2012

Jason Mraz Endorses Maryland Marriage Equality at HoCo's Merriweather Pavilion // Grammy Winner Urges Vote FOR 6

UPDATE: Matt Johnson, our source for the Jason Mraz story below provides further details on the "Vote for 6" endorsement: 
MATT JOHNSON: I was at the Jason Mraz concert this evening at the Merriweather Post Pavillion in Columbia. After Jason finished his set, he left the stage, then as expected, returned for an encore. He started by telling about his manager (I think it was his manager, anyway), a guy named Jerry, who supported him and believed in him even when he [Jason] didn't believe in himself.

Then Jason said that Jerry was gay, and that if they lived in Maryland, they'd be voting YES on SIX. For which he received applause from the crowd.

It was a very uplifting experience. I'm not even a huge Mraz fan. I just went with my boyfriend, who is. I'm glad that people like Mraz are paying attention to Maryland's fight for equality and encouraging Marylanders to support YES on SIX.

A Maryland Juice reader and Assistant Editor of the Greater Greater Washington blog has tweeted us live from a concert at Howard County's Merriweather Post Pavilion to inform us that Jason Mraz has endorsed marriage equality in the Free State:

Thursday, August 23, 2012

WASTED: Del. Don Dwyer Crashes Boat, Injures Children // MD Tea Party Official Admits Boating While Drinking, Sinks Vessel

Tea Party Del. Don Dwyer on a Boat (2009). Source: Facebook.

DELEGATE DWYER SINKS BOAT WITH 2.5 TIMES LEGAL BLOOD ALCOHOL CONTENT: Maryland politicos are buzzing with news that GOP Delegate Don Dwyer drove a boat while drunk last night, resulting in seven injured people -- including three children. According to WBAL, Del. Dwyer's blood alcohol content (BAC) was .2, which is two and a half times over the legal limit for Maryland automobile drivers. Driving with .08 BAC is per se illegal in Maryland, and Dwyer admits boating while boozing, so his actions likely constitute a criminal offense in the Free State. We first learned of the news from a report in the LGBT-oriented publication, The Metro Weekly (excerpt below):

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

CSX Train Derailments & PEPCO's Direct Mail Propaganda // Will Infrastructure Spending Ever Become a Policy Priority?

Pepco's electricity customers in the DC Metro region have been receiving direct mail letters defending the company's response to recent power outages. You may have received the lame letter below over the last few weeks, but note that it doesn't really talk about long-term solutions to Maryland's terrible electrical infrastructure. See the piece below.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

JUICEBLENDER: Rep. Roscoe Bartlett Under Fire for Rape Issues // PLUS: Bongino Receives Sarah Palin Endorsement

Here's a random blend of political tidbits from recent news, starting with news that former GOP Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin has endorsed U.S. Senator Ben Cardin's opponent Dan Bongino:

JUICE #1: SARAH PALIN ENDORSES MARYLAND GOP SENATE NOMINEE DAN BONGINO - Former Secret Service agent Dan Bongino faces an uphill battle in his race against incumbent U.S. Senator Ben Cardin. But this week, he received an endorsement from former Alaska Governor and GOP Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin. The rightwing Monoblogue reported on the bizarre development, and we provide Palin's full endorsement below. Maryland Juice is not sure that a Palin endorsement is a net gain for any statewide candidate in Maryland, but check out Monoblogue for the rightwing perspective on this endorsement.
SARAH PALIN: Though political pundits often dismiss conservative candidates running in deep blue states, I don’t believe in ignoring good candidates simply because they’re fighting uphill battles against the odds. In fact, I find such candidates incredibly brave and especially worthy of encouragement. In many cases, they are often the most articulate and courageous new conservative voices out there.

GUEST POST: Del. Eric Luedtke Defends Veterans Hall Gaming Law // MoCo Lawmaker Responds to PG Del. Doyle Niemann

Delegate Eric Luedtke
BACKGROUND: Yesterday, Maryland Juice published a guest post from Delegate Doyle Niemann. The Prince George's County Democratic lawmaker sought to rebut claims about Maryland's new gambling law that appeared on Maryland Juice. In particular, his piece challenged suggestions made by Del. Eric Luedtke and Fred Nordham, a member of the Prince George's Veterans Commission, that an expansion of gaming machines at veterans halls would have a limited impact on the State.

Delegate Luedtke, a Montgomery County Democrat, now provides Maryland Juice with a response to Doyle Niemann's guest post. Luedtke further explains the rationale for parts of the gambling law below. You can read the provisions of the new gaming law online.
Sensible Gaming Policy in Maryland

by Delegate Eric Luedtke

I think it’s worth responding to Del. Niemann’s point, but in the broader context of where the legislature is driving gaming policy in Maryland.

Monday, August 20, 2012

GUEST POST: Del. Doyle Niemann Slams Veterans Hall Gaming Law // Prince George's Official Says Slots Will Spread in MD

Delegate Doyle Niemann
Today Delegate Doyle Niemann, a Prince George's County Democrat, provided Maryland Juice with a lengthy criticism of Maryland's new gambling expansion law. In particular, he condemns a new provision allowing slot machines at neighborhood veterans halls. We print his response below, along a little bit of background on the new controversy.

BACKGROUND: Last Friday, Maryland Juice reported on a small but significant change to the State's new gambling expansion law that would allow slot machines at "veterans halls" sprinkled throughout Maryland. We feared that this particular gambling expansion provision would lead to neighborhood slot machine sites in numerous residential neighborhoods. In fact, the way the newly passed law is structured, veterans halls would get to operate slot machines -- whether or not the November gambling expansion referendum passes. Our piece generated a response from Del. Eric Luedtke of Montgomery County and Fred Nordham from the Prince George's Commission for Veterans. Both readers strongly challenged our characterization of the "neighborhood slots" expansion and insisted that the machines were different from slots and could not be used by those who were not members of the veterans halls.

Maryland Referenda Numbers Released: Dream Act = 4, Marriage Equality = 6 // Democrats Weigh Yes on All Campaign

NOVEMBER REFERENDA ASSIGNED BALLOT NUMBERS: Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley today sent an email indicating that the Secretary of State has released the referenda numbers for the State's numerous issue questions this year. Indeed, voters this November will be asked to vote "for" or "against" the Dream Act (#4), marriage equality (#6), redistricting (#5), gambling expansion (#7), and more. To be very clear, a vote for #6 is a vote for marriage equality, and a vote for #4 is a vote for the Dream Act. See the referenda ordering and numbers below. Note that the list does not include County referenda, such as Montgomery County's police bargaining question or a potential energy tax question.
Question 1 - Constitutional Amendment – Qualifications for Prince George’s County Orphans’ Court Judges

Question 2 – Constitutional Amendment – Qualifications for Baltimore County Orphans’ Court Judges

Question 3 – Constitutional Amendment – Suspension and Removal of Elected Officials

Question 4 – Referendum Petition – Public Institutions of Higher Education – Tuition Rates

Question 5 – Referendum Petition – Congressional Districting Plan

Question 6
– Referendum Petition - Civil Marriage Protection Act

Question 7 – Gaming Expansion Referendum - Gaming Expansion

Friday, August 17, 2012

Slot Machines in College Park, Easton & Frederick? // New Gambling Law Puts Neighborhood Slots at Veterans Halls

DOUBLE-UPDATE: Delegate Doyle Neimann of Prince George's County has provided Maryland Juice with a rebuttal of some of the points raised below by Fred Nordham and Delegate Eric Luedtke.

UPDATE: A few knowledgeable readers have sent in clarifications about the workings of the veterans hall slot machines. The added details may remove a few worries about the new law. First, the veterans halls with slot machines are not exactly open to the public. VFW and American Legion members and their guests can gamble at the facilities, but they do not appear to be open to non-members. It is unclear whether this is stipulated in Maryland's new gambling law, or whether this is simply a fact of how the veterans halls are organized. Additionally, the slot machines in the veterans halls will look like slot machines, but the technology for them is a bit different.

Below you can see the clarifications Maryland Juice received from Delegate Eric Luedtke (District 14 Democrat) and Fred Nordhorn from the Prince George's County Commission for Veterans:
DELEGATE ERIC LUEDTKE: Slot machines have been authorized in veterans halls in most eastern shore counties (including Talbot Co., which includes Easton) for about 20 years, so your mentioning Easton in the title of your post is probably not on target. Most people don't know that, largely because these foreign legion and VFW posts are members-only, therefore not open to the general public, therefore not 'neighborhood slots parlors'.

Maryland High Court Upholds GOP Redistricting Referendum // Voters to Decide Fate of Congressional Lines in November

Today, Maryland's high court upheld a lower court ruling to place a redistricting referendum on this November's Presidential Election ballot. We previously reported that Maryland Republican activists gathered enough petition signatures to subject the state's new Congressional districts to a referendum. Maryland Democrats responded with a lawsuit challenging the validity of the signatures, but lost at the Circuit Court level. The Dems appealed the ruling to Maryland Court of Appeals, but today the high court issued an order affirming the ruling of the Circuit Court, which ordered the redistricting referendum onto this November Presidential ballot. That makes it pretty official -- Maryland voters can expect to take positions on marriage equality, the Dream Act, gambling expansion and now Congressional redistricting.

See the Court of Appeals order below, followed by the original Circuit Court ruling that it upholds:

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Former MoCo Democratic Party Chair Karen Britto Says Party Leader Trying to "Divide & Conquer" Maryland Minorities

Maryland Juice previously reported that Karen Britto, the former Chair of Montgomery County's Democratic Central Committee, was organizing an effort to encourage more racial and ethnic minorities to seek elected office. She recently held two gatherings of minority elected officials and political activists, which each brought dozens and dozens of MoCo residents together to discuss the 2014 Democratic primaries in Maryland.

GUEST COMMENTARY FROM KAREN BRITTO: In a strange twist, we received a guest post from Ms. Britto this week. She alleges that an unnamed "elected official" is trying to "divide and conquer" groups that might get involved with her effort.
GUEST POST - Divide and Conquer People of Color?

by Karen Britto // former Montgomery County Democratic Central Committee Chair

After a successful People of Color summit was held to elect Democrats in 2014 and beyond – The People of Color Coalition were well aware that efforts to draw a wedge between our group could ensue.  Well, it has happened.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

SEIU Local 500 Endorses Rebecca Smondrowski for Montgomery County Board of Education, District 2

SEIU Local 500, the labor organization representing employees in the Montgomery County public school system, has endorsed Rebecca Smondrowski for the Board of Education District 2 seat. Smondrowski is running against former principal Fred Evans, who has the backing of the teachers union (aka MCEA). In the April school board primaries, five candidates vied for the two General Election spots. The Primary Election results are below, followed by the endorsement press release from SEIU Local 500:

  1. Fred Evans - 16,495 (24.8%) - MCEA Endorsed
  2. Rebecca Smondrowski - 14,938 (22.4%) - Washington Post Endorsed
  3. Jeanne Ellinport - 14,487 (21.7%) - MCEA Endorsed
  4. Susan Byrne - 13,828 (20.8%)
  5. Saqib Ali  - 6,878 (10.3%)

SEIU Local 500 Endorses Rebecca Smondrowski for 
Montgomery County Board of Education, District 2

History of commitment to education key to endorsement

GAITHERSBURG, MD – The executive board of the SEIU Local 500 unanimously voted to endorse Rebecca Smondrowski for the open, District 2 seat on the Montgomery County Board of Education.

SEIU Local 500 President Merle Cuttitta said:

“Local 500 members drive the buses that bring children to school, keep classrooms and hallways clean and safe and provide direct instruction to this community’s children as paraeducators and media assistants - and they are committed to giving our children a world class education. Local 500 members also have children and grandchildren who attend Montgomery County public schools. That’s why it is so important for all of us to have someone like Rebecca on the Board of Education, because she has proven her commitment to our schools, our community and our children.”

Rebecca Smondrowski expressed her appreciation of Local 500’s support:

“SEIU Local 500 members are on the front lines, working to keep Montgomery County schools among the nation’s best and I am honored to have their support.”

SEIU Local 500 members include supporting services employees at MCPS, Maryland family childcare providers, part time faculty at Montgomery College and employees at homes and centers for the developmentally disabled.

Maryland Gambling Expansion Heading to November Ballot // ROLL CALL: House Barely Approves Table Games & PG Casino


Local political reporters are all highlighting the results of Maryland's second special legislative session in 2012. After weeks of heated debate, the Maryland House of Delegates approved the gambling expansion plan -- with no votes to spare. Gambling proponents needed 71 votes in the House to pass gambling, and they received exactly 71 votes. The State Senate already approved the gambling expansion plan on Friday, so about an hour ago, Gov. Martin O'Malley signed the casino referendum bill. That means that gambling is heading to the November ballot alongside marriage equality, the Dream Act, and Maryland's Congressional redistricting plan.

SENATE PRESIDENT MIKE MILLER NOW CLAIMS GAMBLING "NOT THE WAY" TO FUND GOVERNMENT - Below is a quick round-up of local news coverage about the Maryland House's approval of the gambling bill. Amazingly, Senate President Mike Miller -- who is directly responsible for the casino push in Maryland -- is now saying gambling is "not the way" to fund government! See an excerpt from the Maryland Reporter special session coverage below:
MARYLAND REPORTER: By the bare minimum of 71 votes, the House of Delegates Monday night gave Senate President Mike Miller the kind of “sine die” adjournment he had expected April 9: The delegates passed a bill asking voters in November to approve table games and a sixth gambling casino in Prince George’s County....

A subdued Miller, believed by most legislators to have bullied O’Malley and Busch back into session, refused to gloat or take a victory lap after the Senate concurred in the House amendments and passed the bill 32-14....

“It’s a fad, it’s a fancy, it’s wrong, it’s not the way to fund government,” Miller told reporters. But Maryland needed to take full advantage of the gambling craze while it lasted....

KEY PROVISIONS OF GAMBLING BILL: Lastly, The Baltimore Sun had a very quick roundup of the key provisions in the newly approved casino referendum. The most important changes are the addition of a Prince George's gambling site, tax cuts for slot machine operators, and the addition of Vegas-style table games to Maryland casinos (eg: craps, blackjack, roulette, etc).

HOUSE OF DELEGATES GAMBLING ROLL CALL VOTE - The Baltimore Sun printed the roll call for the Maryland House gambling vote today. You can see the full roster at their site, but we highlight the Democratic "NO" votes below:
  1. Alston, Tiffany T. (D) Prince George's
  2. Barkley, Charles E. (D) Montgomery
  3. Beidle, Pamela G. (D) Anne Arundel
  4. Carter, Jill P. (D) Baltimore
  5. Gilchrist, James W. (D) Montgomery
  6. Griffith, Melony G. (D) Prince George's
  7. Hammen, Peter A. (D) Baltimore
  8. Holmes, Marvin E., Jr. (D) Prince George's
  9. James, Mary-Dulany (D) Harford
  10. Kelly, Ariana B. (D) Montgomery
  11. Lee, Susan C. (D) Montgomery
  12. Miller, Aruna (D) Montgomery
  13. Mizeur, Heather R. (D) Montgomery
  14. Morhaim, Dan K. (D) Baltimore Co.
  15. Murphy, Peter F. (D) Charles
  16. Niemann, Doyle L. (D) Pr. George's
  17. Pena-Melnyk, Joseline A. (D) Prince George's
  18. Robinson, A. Shane (D) Montgomery
  19. Simmons, Luiz R. S. (D) Montgomery
  20. Sophocleus, Theodore J. (D) Anne Arundel
  21. Vaughn, Michael L. (D) Prince George's
  22. Wood, John F., Jr. (D) St. Mary's

DIRECT MAIL & MEDIA WAR BREWING? - Given how much money was spent by groups on the public relations battle surrounding gambling, we could see a decent amount of paid propaganda in Maryland. In the closing days of the special session fight, a reader sent us the following direct mail piece that a group called CSOA sent to Maryland voters. They added the following comments about the origin of the mailer:
ANONYMOUS READER: A little late, so I don't know if you're still interested in it but here's the gambling mailer I got Monday.  The most interesting/weirdest thing about it (to me) is that it's from a group called CSOA but it doesn't say what that stands for. If you google CSOA Maryland, a race horse owner's group comes up... I guess they're mad that gambling is coming to National Harbor but not Rosecroft. Also, it seems to be targeted towards PG residents and I live in Howard county?
CSOA Maryland Gambling Direct Mail

PS - PIT BULL LEGISLATION DIED IN SPECIAL SESSION - One other piece of legislation was dealt with in the special session. Pit bull owners were rallying to stop a Maryland Court of Appeals decision that pit bulls are inherently dangerous. The Patch's Bryan Sears noted (excerpt below):
TOWSON PATCH: ... a bill meant to overturn a controversial Court of Appeals ruling that declared pit bulls an inherently dangerous dog breed failed after Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller said the House gave senators a "take it or leave it" ultimatum.


Tuesday, August 14, 2012

UPDATE: Del. Jon Cardin Confirms Interest in 2014 MD Attorney General Race // PLUS: Other Candidates Emerge

Two weeks ago, Maryland Juice reported that Delegate Jon Cardin was ramping up his fundraising in anticipation of a 2014 Attorney General campaign. Below we provide confirmation of his interest in the race, as well as speculation about other potential candidates.

JUICE #1: CARDIN CONFIRMS INTEREST IN 2014 ATTORNEY GENERAL RACE - The Towson Patch's Bryan Sears yesterday confirmed Del. Cardin's interest in the 2014 race (excerpt below):
TOWSON PATCH: "I'm exploring the attorney general position," said Cardin, who represents Owings Mills, Pikesville and part of Timonium. "I'm not exploring the comptroller position."

JUICE #2: COURT OF APPEALS JUDGE LYNNE BATTAGLIA PONDERING 2014 RACE - Meanwhile, Center Maryland columnist Josh Kurtz wrote last week that Court of Appeals Judge Lynne Battaglia is pondering the 2014 Attorney General race. Kurtz also notes other candidates whose names have been floated for the position, but he also provides a lengthy analysis of the potential 2014 field (excerpt below):
CENTER MARYLAND: Lynne Battaglia, the Clinton-era U.S. attorney for Maryland who has been a Court of Appeals judge for the past 11 years, is considering running for attorney general in 2014, according to knowledgeable sources....
Del. Aisha Braveboy (D) is also talking about running, and there continues to be a fanciful rumor that Katie Curran O’Malley wants the job....
State Senate Judicial Proceedings Chairman Brian Frosh (D) is now taking steps to run.... Del. Bill Frick (D) continues to travel the state, exploring the possibility of an AG run. Montgomery County State’s Attorney John McCarthy (D) is also making the political rounds.... And as we reported two weeks ago, former Ehrlich administration official Chrys Kefalas is contemplating running on the Republican side.


ROLL CALL: Maryland House Ways & Means Committee Approves Casino Expansion // See How 2014 Candidates Voted

After the Maryland Senate approved a gambling expansion plan last week (see roll call at the bottom of this page), debate proceeded in the House of Delegates. According to an AP report on WBAL, yesterday the House Ways & Means committee approved an amended version of the bill to bring table games to Maryland and a new casino to Prince George's County. The House bill passed 13-7 and included expanded slot machine tax cuts for Anne Arundel and Baltimore casino owners upset at the potential new competition in Maryland.

Check out the AP's special session coverage at WBAL. They provided a House Ways & Means roll call, which we provide below, but we've made a note next to the names of some Delegates who are considering runs for statewide office in 2014.


Voting Yes
Sandy Rosenberg (D)
Talmadge Branch (D)
 Carolyn Howard (D)
Jolene Ivey (D)
Anne Kaiser (D)
Eric Luedtke (D)
Justin Ross (D)
Melvin Stukes (D)
Michael Summers (D)
Frank Turner (D)
Jay Walker (D)

Voting No
Kathy Afzali (R)
Joe Boteler (R)
Mark Fisher (R)
Ron George (R)
Glen Glass (R)
Aruna Miller (D)
Andrew Serafini (R)

Not Voting
LeRoy Myers (R)
Sheila Hixson-Chairman (D)

The Maryland Senate has updated its website to include the full roll call vote on the gambling expansion bill:

28 Yeas     14 Nays     2 Not Voting     0 Excused (Absent)     3 Absent

Voting Yea - 28

Mr. President












Conway J
















Voting Nay - 14















Not Voting - 2



Excused from Voting - 0

Excused (Absent) - 3