Wednesday, January 16, 2013

JuiceBlender: Don Dwyer Blames Boating Accident on Gay Marriage, O'Malley Prioritizes Death Penalty, Greg Hall Update

Below Maryland Juice highlights a few articles that may be of interest to Free State politicos, starting with some amazingly disingenuous excuses from Tea Party lawmaker Don Dwyer:

JUICE #1: MARYLAND GOP LAWMAKER DON DWYER BLAMES DRUNK BOATING ACCIDENT ON MARRIAGE EQUALITY - Media figures are beginning to highlight (and deride) amazing comments that Delegate Don Dwyer made about his drunk boating accident. As you may recall, Dwyer (a supposed "family values" -- read: anti-gay -- politician) admitted being trashed on booze when he crashed his boat, resulting in an accident that left several children seriously injured. Now he's blaming the accident on marriage equality (translation: blaming it on the gays): The Washington Blade reported on Dwyer's outrageous comments (excerpt below):
WASHINGTON BLADE: A Maryland lawmaker told a local newspaper last week that legislators who voted for the state’s same-sex marriage bill contributed to his alcohol abuse. Delegate Don Dwyer (R-Anne Arundel County) told the Maryland Gazette in an interview the newspaper posted to its website on Saturday that he felt “betrayed” when Dels. Wade Koch (R-Baltimore County) and Robert Costa (R-Anne Arundel County) and then-Del. Tiffany Alston (D-Prince George’s County) in Feb. 2012 backed for the measure that Gov. Martin O’Malley eventually signed into law....
Dwyer's attempt to blame his drunk boating accident on marriage equality was met with derision on the Internet, as best represented by the following headline on the Wonkette blog: Drunky Maryland Pol: Gay Marriage Crashed That Boat, Injured That 5-Year-Old Girl (excerpt below):
WONKETTE: It is not funny that Maryland Delegate Don Dwyer drunkenly crashed his boat last year, fracturing the skull of a five-year-old girl. But it is funny that he is blaming gay marriage for the alcoholism that made him drunkenly crash his boat last year, fracturing the skull of a five-year-old girl! Oh, did we say “funny”?...

DC101 DJ Mike Jones commented on the radio station's Facebook page: "The Maryland gay marriage vote caused him to drink. Could be the biggest BS politician excuse I've ever heard. -mike jones"

JUICE #2: O'MALLEY TO MAKE DEATH PENALTY REPEAL A LEGISLATIVE PRIORITY - The likelihood of finally banning government executions in Maryland increased greatly this week. News outlets and advocates are reporting that Gov. Martin O’Malley will sponsor death penalty repeal legislation and put the weight of his office behind the effort in Annapolis. Check out the following report from The Death Penalty Information Center (excerpt below):
DEATH PENALTY INFORMATION CENTER: On January 15 at a press conference with leaders of the NAACP, Maryland's Governor Martin O'Malley announced he will be making the repeal of capital punishment a priority in the upcoming legislative session and will submit a repeal bill to the legislature later this week. Among the concerns about the death penalty expressed by the governor were its high costs and the lack of any benefit to society: "Is it worth wasting taxpayer dollars on a policy that does not work?" Senate President Mike Miller, who supports the death penalty, said the bill will be given a vote in the full Senate and will likely pass this year. Maryland has not had an execution or death sentence since 2005, and the state's lethal injection procedures have not been approved by the courts.
The Washington Post highlighted the potential impact of O'Malley's leadership on the issue (excerpt below):
WASHINGTON POST: Though the governor’s decision does not guarantee passage, “it makes a huge difference,” said Sen. Brian E. Frosh (D-Montgomery), chairman of the Judicial Proceedings Committee, where repeal bills have stalled in past years....
A repeal “can’t get done without the governor, and having his active engagement will be vital,” said Frosh, who favors the abolishment of capital punishment.
With O’Malley’s name on the bill, it is certain to get heightened media attention, as well as the focus of a team of lobbyists employed by the governor’s office and personal attention from O’Malley himself....

JUICE #3: PRINCE GEORGE'S DEMOCRATS RETRACT GREG HALL'S NOMINATION FOR TIFFANY ALSTON'S DELEGATE SEAT  //  3 NEW NAMES SUBMITTED - The unusual saga surrounding efforts to appoint a replacement for former Delegate Tiffany Alston (District 24) lurched forward today. As you may recall, the Prince George's Democratic Central Committee's (PGDCC) choice for the seat was activist Greg Hall. But news of Hall's dark past gave some PGDCC members pause and last night they voted to revoke his nomination. The Prince George's Democrats also forwarded three new names to Gov. O'Malley. Check out the report from The Gazette (excerpt below):
GAZETTE: The Prince George's County Democratic Central Committee revoked its nominee to fill a vacant delegate seat Tuesday night, leaving the task of filling the seat firmly in the hands of the governor.

In a contentious meeting that saw Greg Hall, the committee's original choice, trading barbs with committee Chair Terry Speigner, the committee put forward three non-binding recommendations that Gov. Martin O'Malley (D) is free to disregard if he chooses....

"At the end of the day, the governor gets what he wants, and Prince George's County once again gets screwed," Hall said....

The Washington Post described the three new nominees for the District 24 seat as follows (excerpt below):
WASHINGTON POST: O'Malley's spokeswoman Raquel Guillory said the governor "will take into consideration" the panel's recommendations. They are: Vicky L. Orem, an orphans' court judge; Clayton Aarons, an attorney; and Phillip Raines, a defense contractor.

Photo Sources: Gazette, Twitter

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