Friday, December 6, 2013

JUICE: Gansler Loses Endorsements, Mizeur's Financing & FOP Support, Brown Under Fire, Simmons vs. Kagan, Ervin & D18

Below Maryland Juice provides a round-up of news that may be of interest to politicos (sorry for the brief hiatus during the recent holiday period):

JUICE #1: DOUG GANSLER LOSING A COUPLE MOCO ENDORSEMENTS? - The last few months of mayhem in Maryland's gubernatorial race may be beginning to have some impact. First, Maryland Juice just caught the following Center Maryland interview of Somerset Mayor Jeffrey Slavin announcing that he's switched his support in the race from Doug Gansler to Anthony Brown. I cut a video excerpting Slavin's comments below:

Maryland Juice had also been hearing murmurs that Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown was due to announce endorsements from Montgomery County officials this Saturday. Today we received the following press release confirming the news (excerpt below):
Montgomery County Endorsement Event
What: Lt. Governor Anthony G. Brown and County Executive Ken Ulman to unveil Montgomery County endorsers

When: Saturday, December 7th at 1:30 p.m.

Where: Jane E. Lawton Community Center
4301 Willow Ln., Chevy Chase, MD 20815
Click here for a Google Map

But interestingly, Delegate Kirill Reznik appears to be one of the MoCo endorsers for Anthony Brown this Saturday. He sent the following email to his state legislative colleagues this week:
KIRILL REZNIK: Dear Friends and Colleagues, This coming Saturday, I will formally announce my endorsement and support of Anthony Brown and Ken Ulman to be our next Governor and Lt. Governor of Maryland.

I'm writing this email to make a personal appeal to my fellow elected officials in Montgomery County to ask you to join me in that announcement.

Over the last 7 years, we've all witnessed Anthony's leadership, commitment to our State, and dedication to progressive politics and policies.  For those of you who served with him in the House of Delegate, prior to his time as Lt. Governor, you've likely seen it earlier.

I have personally done a lot of soul-searching to come to this point, and though I have great respect for Anthony's competitors in this race, and count them amongst my friends, I believe that the best choice for both the people of Maryland and the people of Montgomery County is to have the Brown/Ulman team elected as our State's top executives.

It is my hope that we can come together as elected officials in Montgomery County and support Anthony and Ken for both the Primary and General election in 2014.  I hope to hear from you and look forward to you joining me this coming Saturday.
Reznik's endorsement is interesting, because a couple Maryland Juice sources told us they were under the impression that was going to be supporting Doug Gansler in the Governor's race. We asked Delegate Reznik for background on his endorsement, and he provided the following commentary:
KIRILL REZNIK: Yes, I am endorsing Anthony Brown. I wouldn't characterize myself as switching, at least not officially.  I had previously expected to endorse Gansler, but hadn't actually done it.  My choice is based primarily on who I believe I am more compatible with policy-wise.  Gansler has taken a position on a number of issues that run counter to my votes in the Legislature.  Things like gas tax, death penalty, etc, just made me realize that from my perspective Anthony is the better choice. I actually made this decision personally before any of Doug's issues arose, but that also didn't help. I am supporting Brown not just opposing Gansler.  I think Anthony is the best candidate.

JUICE #2: HEATHER MIZUER OPTS FOR PUBLIC FINANCING IN THE GOVERNOR'S RACE AND ALSO EARNS THE MOCO FOP ENDORSEMENT - Two months ago, Maryland Juice predicted that Delegate Heather Mizeur would opt into Maryland's public financing system for gubernatorial campaigns. Though the decision would limit her campaign expenditures to about $2.5 million, it would also allow her to receive public matching funds from contributions she has already raised. This week Mizeur released the following press release announcing that our prediction was correct (excerpt below):
Mizeur proposes sweeping campaign finance reform;
will accept public funding
SILVER SPRING, Maryland – This morning, Heather Mizeur, Democratic candidate for governor, will walk interested members of the press through several proposals for campaign finance reform that she would enact as Governor.

Mizeur will also answer questions about her plans to participate in public financing and limit some other contributions to her campaign....

Details on plan

Mizeur’s public funding plan creates a voluntary matching fund system for all legislative and statewide candidates. Under the proposal, the state would provide one-to-one matching funds for participating candidates on all contributions of $250 or below. Candidates who opt into the system would be limited to maximum public match levels and prohibited from accepting contributions over $250.

“A voluntary public financing option will encourage more diverse candidates and serious options for voters,” Mizeur said. “Our elections should focus on issues, not purse strings.”

Mizeur will also propose several additional reforms aimed at limiting special interest influence and increasing transparency. The reforms include a ban on corporation and state contractor contributions, a stop to the lobbyist “revolving door,” and a requirement that municipal candidates abide by state finance reporting laws.

“I want to be Governor to ensure that all Marylanders have a voice in Annapolis. I can’t think of a better way to do that than by eradicating special interest control over campaign finance.”

Mizeur will participate in the current gubernatorial public financing system.

“I believe in leading by example so I will be accepting the current model of public financing. It’s time for politicians to start walking the walk. If we want to take the money out of politics, we need to prove that it can be done.” 

Key Facts about Maryland’s Current Public Financing System:

Campaigns participating in public financing receive eligible and ineligible funds. Eligible funds are those that qualify for matching--contributions up to $250 from individuals--and ineligible are all other contributions compliant with regular Maryland state law.

Participating campaigns must abide by a spending cap determined by the State Board of Elections using a calculation based on the state's population and adjusted for inflation. The exact number won't be available until early 2014. The estimate from the board is approximately $2.5 million.

Publicly financed campaigns are able to accept eligible funds during legislative session.

Every time a campaign opting for public financing raises $250,000 in eligible funds, the campaign can apply to the Maryland State Board of Elections to have those funds matched.

The fund is regulated by the State Board of Elections and controlled by the Comptroller's office.

Public financing is currently only available to candidates running for Governor.

To read Heather’s full campaign finance reform plan, please visit:

Meanwhile, this week Mizeur also announced the endorsement of MoCo's police union (FOP Lodge 35):
Mizeur-Coates Campaign Endorsed by Montgomery County Police Union

SILVER SPRING, Maryland – This morning, Heather Mizeur, Democratic candidate for Governor, earned the endorsement of the Montgomery County Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) Lodge 35.

“I am honored to have the support of the brave men and women from Lodge 35,” said Mizeur. “Together, we will change the status quo in Annapolis and get to work to on sensible reforms to our criminal justice system that improve public safety and protect our officers in the line of duty.

Leaders of Lodge 35 were impressed by Mizeur’s governing vision and her commitment to improving Maryland’s communities.

“After hearing Heather speak, her selection was a no-brainer for us,” said member and County Detective Jim Peacock. “Maryland has had enough politics-as-usual. Heather is a breath of fresh air, and she far outshined her competition with her knowledge of the issues, passion for public service, and commitment to making a difference.”

“Heather is a capable leader and will bring fresh ideas rather than maintaining the status quo,” said Torrie Cooke, Lodge 35 President.

FOP Lodge 35 represents approximately 1,200 police officers in Montgomery County. This is the first local FOP endorsement and the first Montgomery County local endorsement in the Maryland Democratic gubernatorial primary election.

FOP Lodge 35 joins Progressive Neighbors, Women’s Campaign Fund, and Blue America in endorsing Mizeur’s candidacy for governor. She has also earned the backing of more than three-dozen current and former elected officials, including former Congressman Wayne Gilchrest, Baltimore City Councilmember Mary Pat Clarke, and Montgomery County Delegate Shane Robinson (D-39). 

For additional comment from FOP Lodge 35, please contact Jim Peacock – (301) 948-4286.


JUICE #3: ANTHONY BROWN UNDER FIRE FOR MARYLAND OBAMACARE ROLL-OUT - In our last item about the Maryland Governor's race, Anthony Brown is facing fire for the state's bungled Obamacare roll-out. The Gansler campaign sent out the following press release calling for a response from Brown and highlighting recent press coverage over the issue:

Statement by Lt. Governor candidate Jolene Ivey on Maryland Health Exchange problems and accountability failure

"The Washington Post recently called Maryland's Health Exchange an 'embarrassment' and Congressman Chris Van Hollen has called it a 'mess' yet Lieutenant Governor Brown, responsible for overseeing it, continues to dodge the press and the public when asked to explain the problems with the health exchange, including how he spent close to $170 million of taxpayers money. The people of Maryland, and all of us who supported the Affordable Care Act, deserve a full accounting, not a Lt. Governor who touts his title in rolling out the health exchange on his campaign website but ducks responsibility in his job. It's no wonder Governor O'Malley has taken this back under his control."

WBALTV11: Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown target of mounting criticism over healthcare

Washington Post: Maryland's Health Exchange needs a doctor

JUICE #4: D17 SENATE RACE HEATS UP: LUIZ SIMMONS ANNOUNCES TEAMSTERS ENDORSEMENTS, WHILE CHERYL KAGAN HIGHLIGHTS SIMMONS' RECORD - The race for the District 17 State Senate seat currently held by Jennie Forehand is heating up. Delegate Luiz Simmons and former Delegate Cheryl Kagan are vying for the seat, and this week, both campaigns released interesting statements. Simmons announced the endorsement of the Teamsters, while Kagan highlighted a new column from Center Maryland's Josh Kurtz pointing out items in Simmons' voting record. See both statements below:
Del. Luiz Simmons Endorsed by Teamsters for State Senate

Rockville, MD – Today, Del. Luiz Simmons received the endorsement of Teamsters Local 730 in his bid to be District 17’s next State Senator.

Teamsters Local 730 has many members who reside in Montgomery County.  Richie Brooks, President of Local 730 said in a letter received by the campaign, “It is with great pleasure that I inform you that Teamsters Local 730 will proudly endorse you for the office of State Senate in Montgomery County in next years election.”

“I am honored to have the support of the Teamsters. I admire these hardworking men and women who often perform the tough and dangerous jobs that make our community a better and safer place to live and raise children,” said Del. Luiz Simmons. “I will continue to support our shared values when I am elected to the State Senate.”

The endorsement of the Teamsters follows Congressman John Delaney’s backing of Simmons and a poll showing Simmons with a 70% approval rating in district 17, while leading his opponent Cheryl Kagan by 16%.

To learn more about Del. Luiz Simmons and his campaign visit

Today, Cheryl Kagan's State Senate campaign also launched the following email blast highlighting criticism of Delegate Simmons' record that appeared in Center Maryland:
CHERYL KAGAN: Dear Juice, I wanted to make sure you saw this breaking news.  One of Maryland's most respected journalists just published an in-depth profile of my opponent for State Senate.  The article's conclusions are troubling:

"[Luiz Simmons'] candidacy...may raise all kinds of red flags for women's groups and organizations that work with victims of domestic violence, for gun control advocates, for people concerned about clean government..."

And that's not all!

"Questions can be raised about Simmons' legislative record, about the fact that he seems to be using government property for political purposes, and about whether Simmons is temperamentally suited to work in a collegial environment."

As a Montgomery County native, former legislator, and lifelong advocate, I am deeply concerned that this kind of representation would hurt our community-- and hurt the causes we all care about so much.

I'm running for State Senate because we need a more positive vision of leadership for Rockville and Gaithersburg.  I've dedicated my career in public service to bringing people together and building coalitions to get things done on issues like strong protections for victims of domestic violence, tough gun control laws, and improving our quality of life.

I hope you'll agree with me that we deserve a progressive, independent-minded Democrat in the State Senate who will stand up for our shared interests and values.  So many of you have already demonstrated your support for my candidacy, and for that I am grateful.  If you haven't had a chance, please consider making a contribution today to keep the momentum going.

Eight years as a member of the legislature taught me the importance of working well with others without abandoning one's principles.  With your help, I'm confident that we can make a real difference for Maryland's future.


JUICE #5: MOCO COUNCILMEMBER VALERIE ERVIN TO ANNOUNCE "FUTURE PLANS" ON TUESDAY - Montgomery County Councilmember Valerie Ervin released a press statement today announcing that she would be announcing her "future plans" next Tuesday. You can read her press release below:

Montgomery County Councilmember Valerie Ervin to Announce Future Plans At Announcement on Tuesday, Dec. 10
She Will Be Joined by Council President Craig Rice, Councilmember Nancy Navarro
ROCKVILLE, Md., December 6, 2013—Montgomery County Councilmember Valerie Ervin will announce her future plans at a news conference at 12 noon on Tuesday, Dec. 10, in the Third Floor Conference Room of the County Council Office Building in Rockville. After nearly a decade as an elected leader in Montgomery County and much speculation about her political future, Councilmember Ervin—who is in her second term on the Council—will be joined by Council President Craig Rice and Councilmember Nancy Navarro to share some exciting news.

Councilmember Ervin, who was first elected to the Council in 2006 and was re-elected in 2010, is best known for her work on issues including establishing a County minimum wage; increasing child care subsidies for working parents; ensuring that prevailing wages are paid on construction projects; providing contract protections for service workers; expanding summer food and universal breakfast programs for children; and creating the first County-wide food recovery network in the nation.

Councilmember Ervin, who served as Council president from 2010-11, is chair of the Council’s Education Committee and also serves on its Government Operations and Fiscal Policy Committee. She is a former member of the Montgomery County Board of Education (elected in 2004) and has been committed to major initiatives to close the achievement gap.  Ervin has also been a strong advocate for marriage equality.

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JUICE #6: DISTRICT 18 TEA LEAVES // SIERRA CLUB ENDORSES D18 DELEGATES ANA SOL GUTIERREZ, JEFF WALDSTREICHER & AL CARR FOR RE-ELECTION - Numerous potential challengers are lining up for District 18's 2014 Delegate race, in the event one of the three incumbents, Ana Sol Gutierrez might retire. While she has not yet announced her plans, Maryland Juice received the following press release from the District 18 team this week indicating that the incumbents have been endorsed for re-election by the Sierra Club. Is the press release below a clue about Delegate Ana Sol Gutierrez's future plans?

Senator Madaleno, Delegates Carr, Gutiérrez, & Waldstreicher Endorsed by Sierra Club

(Kensington, MD) The District 18 Democratic Team announced today that each member—Senator Rich Madaleno and Delegates Al Carr, Ana Sol Gutiérrez, and Jeff Waldstreicher—was endorsed by the Sierra Club for the 2014 election.

The Sierra Club is one of Maryland’s leading environmental organizations.  Their endorsements cited each member’s “strong support for the environment and proven track record on environmental issues.”

Although the Sierra Club endorsed each member of the District 18 Democrats, the Sierra Club endorses individual environmental champions, not slates.

“I am proud to serve with fierce environmental advocates on my team,” Senator Madaleno stated.  “Delegates Carr, Gutiérrez, Waldstreicher, and I work day-in and day-out to ensure Marylanders have clear air, clean water, and a green future for our children.  The Sierra Club’s endorsement reflects the progress we’ve made together curbing global warming, preserving open space, and protecting the Chesapeake Bay.”

An official announcement regarding each member’s 2014 plans will be forthcoming.  To learn more about the District 18 Democratic Team, please visit


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