Wednesday, March 27, 2013

2014 RUMBLE: Former Del. Cheryl Kagan Blasts Luiz Simmons on Gun Control // Del. Simmons Fights Back with Town Hall

The raging debate over proposed new gun laws in Maryland is quickly becoming a 2014 campaign issue for Democratic Primary candidates. Below we highlight one clear example of a potential contender wielding the proposed assault weapons ban against a rival candidate.

BACKGROUND: Maryland Juice previously discussed rumors that Delegate Luiz Simmons might seek the District 17 State Senate seat currently held by fellow Democrat Jennie Forehand. Notably, Simmons was the lone Delegate representing Montgomery County to vote against Gov. Martin O'Malley's transportation funding bill (aka the gas tax hike).

But over the weekend, The Washington Post published an editorial accusing Delegate Simmons and his Democratic colleague Del. Kathleen Dumais of trying to exempt AR-15 rifles from the proposed ban on assault weapons in Maryland. The Washington Post's editorial board writers noted Montgomery County's liberal political climate and suggested that a ban on AR-15 rifles "would reflect the interests of their constituents." But Delegate Dumais strongly objected to The  Post's characterization of her views on guns, in a lengthy guest post on Maryland Juice yesterday. We also printed a leaked copy of a letter Del. Luiz Simmons sent to The Washington Post objecting to their characterization of his views.

FORMER DELEGATE CHERYL KAGAN SLAMS LUIZ SIMMONS ON GUN CONTROL - In spite of Del. Luiz Simmons' objections to The Washington Post editorial discussing his views on gun control -- a potential rival candidate is coming out swinging on the issue. Former District 17 Delegate Cheryl Kagan called out Luiz Simmons in a post on Facebook today:
CHERYL KAGAN: How can one of my Delegates in Annapolis, Luiz Simmons, speak just a few days ago about allegedly working to tighten Maryland's gun laws... and then be actually working behind the scenes to weaken them??! He has already been criticized by the Washington Post but needs to hear from his Rockville & Gaithersburg constituents!

Notably, in 2010 Cheryl Kagan ran for the District 17 State Senate seat Simmons is rumored to be eyeing. Kagan narrowly lost the Democratic Primary to Senator Forehand by around 300 votes, and her attacks on Simmons are a pretty good sign that she's weighing a 2014 State Senate run.

DELEGATE LUIZ SIMMONS ANNOUNCES TELEPHONE TOWN HALL ON GUN CONTROL TOMORROW - For his part, Delegate Luiz Simmons is challenging Cheryl Kagan's framing of his views on gun control, and he is now taking his response straight to voters. Maryland Juice received a copy of a taped robocall from Del. Simmons announcing a telephone town hall meeting tomorrow night, to discuss the proposed Maryland assault weapons ban (listen below):

More on the gun control battle & the 2014 races soon!

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