Friday, February 28, 2014

JUICE: Frosh Video, Gross D9A Facebook Post, D13 Family Ties, Henson vs. McFadden, MoCo School $, MCDCC Battle & More!

Below Maryland Juice provides a quick round-up of news items of interest to politicos:

JUICE #1: BRIAN FROSH RELEASES NEW WEB VIDEO HIGHLIGHTING GUN CONTROL ADVOCACY - Sen. Brian Frosh (a candidate for Attorney General) released a new web video today highlighting testimonials from national gun control advocates:

JUICE #2: OUTRAGEOUS FACEBOOK COMMENTARY FROM D9A DELEGATE CANDIDATE FRANK MIRABILE - Social media platforms are known to produce feisty back-and-forth commentary between politicos. But a Maryland Juice reader highlighted an outrageous set of comments from District 9A candidate Frank Mirabile, a Republican candidate for an open Delegate seat.  In the Facebook thread (excerpts screen-capped below), Mirabile responds to someone criticizing his stances on various issues by repeatedly insulting her physical appearance:

#TACKY: Maryland's District 9A is two-member House of Delegates district, with one open seat. D9A incumbent GOP Delegate Warren Miller is running for re-election, but there are four candidates in the Republican Primary for the one open seat: Eric Bouchat, Trent Kittleman, Kyle Lorton and Frank Mirabile. Notably, Frank Mirabile was also the 2010 Republican Congressional nominee against Congressman Elijah Cummings. I'm not sure I've seen a candidate for public office publish commentary as crass and unseemly as this before. Notably, the Facebook link appears to have been deleted, but not before a few hundred comments appeared on the thread.

JUICE #3: BIZARRE FAMILY JOCKEYING IN HOCO'S DISTRICT 13 DELEGATE RACE - Strange things are happening in the House of Delegates District 13 race. In the three-seat Howard County-anchored district, incumbents Shane Pendergrass and Frank Turner are currently filed to run for re-election. They had previously formed a slate with HoCo school board member Janet Siddiqui, but on the last day for candidates to file, Turner's protege Vanessa Atterbeary and Siddiqui's husband Nayab Siddiqui both filed for office. This appears to be a bit of a switcheroo, because Janet Siddiqui has now withdrawn from the race. The Baltimore Sun's Amanda Yeager had this to say (excerpt below):
BALTIMORE SUN: The political world got a last-minute shock Tuesday night when Nayab Siddiqui, husband of district 13 candidate and Howard County school board member Janet Siddiqui, filed to run in the same race. But as of Thursday afternoon, Janet Siddiqui is no longer up against her husband. She has officially withdrawn from the race, according to the state Board of Elections’ online list of candidates.... Other Democratic candidates include Oakland Mills community organizer Fred Eiland and Fulton lawyer Vanessa Atterbeary, who also filed at the last minute on Tuesday.

JUICE #4: JULIUS HENSON PLEDGES TO CONTINUE CAMPAIGN AGAINST SEN. NATE MCFADDEN, EVEN AS JUDGE RULES IT IS A PROBATION VIOLATION - Baltimore consultant Julius Henson was convicted of voter fraud charges for illegal robocalls he deployed on behalf of GOP Governor Bob Ehrlich. But Henson is now a candidate for State Senate against Sen. Nate McFadden, and he's pledging to continue campaigning even though a judge has ruled he's now violating his probation. The Washington Post's Paul Schwartzman reported on the development (excerpt below, H/T Maryland Reporter):
WASHINGTON POST: Julius Henson ... promised to keep running for office despite a judge’s ruling that he had violated his probation by becoming a candidate.... Henson, 64, vowed not only to appeal but also to press on with his campaign to “retire” Nathaniel J. McFadden (D), who has served in the state Senate for 18 years....  Prosecutors accused Henson of seeking to suppress turnout among African Americans during the 2010 governor’s race when he worked as a strategist for the campaign of former governor Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. (R)....  At Thursday’s hearing, Emmet Davitt, Maryland’s special prosecutor, argued that the language of Henson’s probation order — barring him from working on campaigns “in any capacity” — made his candidacy a violation....

JUICE #5: MOCO UNLIKELY TO GET SCHOOL INCREASE IN SCHOOL CONSTRUCTION FUNDING? - The Gazette's Kate Alexander reported this week that despite surging enrollment, Montgomery County may be unlikely to receive an increase in school construction funding this year (excerpt below):
GAZETTE: Midway through Maryland’s 90-day legislative session, county lawmakers seem to hold little hope of their top legislative priority passing the General Assembly and establishing a steady, predictable stream of state money to leverage borrowing for school construction.

[MoCo Executive Ike] Leggett said the county began pushing for more school construction dollars in 2010 and was able to get some additional state money through the conventional budget process. But to keep pace with growing enrollment — about 2,000 new students each year for Montgomery County Public Schools — even more money is needed.... [Delegate Anne Kaiser’s school construction funding] bill is scheduled for a hearing March 6. The Senate version is scheduled for a hearing March 12.

JUICE #6: PROGRESSIVE MARYLAND LAUNCHES SOCIAL MEDIA CAMPAIGN OPPOSING ESTATE TAX CUT - Progressive Maryland's Executive Director Kate Planco Waybright recently published a guest post on Maryland Juice urging lawmakers to abandon support a cut in the state's estate tax. It appears the organization is now following up on their effort with targeted social media ad buys. Check out the screen cap sent to us by a reader below:

JUICE #7: CONTESTED RACES FOR MOCO DEMOCRATIC CENTRAL COMMITTEE // SEE WHO IS ON THE OFFICIAL MCDCC SLATE - Bethesda Magazine's Lou Peck reported on jockeying over the upcoming Democratic Primary elections for the Montgomery County Democratic Central Committee (MCDCC). Notably, the MCDCC appoints Democrats to fill vacant legislative seats and mails sample ballots to voters recommending positions on referenda. Last year we witnessed all sorts of mayhem  when some labor unions picketed the MCDCC spring ball due to the group's support for repeal of "effects bargaining" rights in MoCo (aka Question B). This week Bethesda Magazine reported on the aftermath (excerpt below):
BETHESDA MAGAZINE: An ongoing effort to mend a rift between the Montgomery County Democratic Central Committee and local labor groups appears to have taken a step forward, as a party screening committee put forth a slate of candidates aimed at placing a significant number of new faces on to the 24-member MCDCC.

One party insider described behind-the-scenes developments over the past week – with the slate not finalized until shortly before Tuesday’s primary filing deadline – as “a bloodless coup in a lot of ways.”

While there will be a number of contested central committee seats in the upcoming June 24 primary – including challenges to some committee veterans – the slate proposed by a five-member screening committee headed by MCDCC Chair Gabriel Albornoz won praise from a top local labor leader....
The MCDCC sent Maryland Juice a press release announcing their selections for the official slate of recommended candidates in the June 24th primaries. Their statement noted the following (excerpt below):
MCDCC: The 2014 Democratic Leadership Team Slate is pleased to announce the candidates for the Montgomery County Democratic Central Committee. The candidates will be on this June’s primary ballot. The slate is comprised of Democratic leaders from many different backgrounds, including: labor, non-profit, government and business. In bringing this group together, party organizers considered the diverse voices and backgrounds that represent the Democratic Party –as well as the various skills and expertise needed to effectively run the party organization....
FULL LIST OF MCDCC CANDIDATES: All of the MCDCC races are contested, except in Districts 17, 18 and 39. Below we publish the MCDCC'S choices, along with the names of candidates who are running against the slate:
  • Brian Anleu, District 14
  • Arthur Edmunds, District 14 - MCDCC Slate - (incumbent)
  • Pam Queen, District 14 - MCDCC Slate - (incumbent)
  • Anis Ahmed, District 15
  • Tim Whitehouse, District 15 - MCDCC Slate
  • Venattia W. Vann, District 15 - MCDCC Slate - (incumbent)
  • Kris Verma, District 15
  • Wendy Cohen, District 16 - MCDCC Slate
  • Loretta Jean Garcia, District 16
  • Almina Khorakiwala, District 16 - MCDCC Slate - (incumbent)
  • Julian Haffner, District 17 - MCDCC Slate
  • Jonathan Prutow, District 17 - MCDCC Slate - (incumbent)
  • Alan Banov, District 18 - MCDCC Slate - (incumbent)
  • Aaron Kaufmann, District 18 - MCDCC Slate
  • Hoan Dang, District 19 - MCDCC Slate
  • Harold Diamond, District 19 - (incumbent)
  • Melissa Pinnick, District 19 - MCDCC Slate
  • Tamika Bennett, District 20 - MCDCC Slate - (incumbent)
  • Ed Kimmel, District 20
  • Jheanelle Wilkins, District 20 - MCDCC Slate
  • Juan Cardenas, District 39 - MCDCC Slate - (incumbent)
  • Mumin Barre, District 39 - MCDCC Slate
  • Darrell Anderson, At Large - MCDCC Slate - (incumbent)
  • Steve Boliek, At Large
  • Chris Bradbury, At Large - MCDCC Slate
  • Natalia Farrar, At Large
  • Marjorie Goldman, At Large - MCDCC Slate - (incumbent)
  • Johntel Greene, At Large - MCDCC Slate
  • Michael Gruenberg, At Large - MCDCC Slate
  • Dave Kunes, At Large - MCDCC Slate
  • Pavel Sukhobok, At Large
  • Kevin Walling, At Large - MCDCC Slate
  • Erin Yeagley, At Large - MCDCC Slate

JUICE #8: MINIMUM WAGE SUPPORTERS RALLY OUTSIDE OF MARYLAND RETAILERS ASSOCIATION OFFICE - The debate over a Maryland minimum wage increase is heating up during the current Annapolis legislative session. Yesterday SEIU organized a rally outside the offices of the Maryland Retailers Association (industry opponents of the minimum wage increase). Check out some photos from the event:

JUICE #9: NEW MAP OF THE PROPOSED MOCO RAPID TRANSIT SYSTEM - The newly rebooted Maryland Politics Watch ( posted a new map of a planned rapid transit system (RTS) for Montgomery County. The transit network below is advancing right now, but it is still in the early stages of development:

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