Tuesday, February 4, 2014

JUICE: Updates on Delaney for Governor, Mooney for Congress, Dana Beyer vs. Sen. Madaleno, MoCo's Exec Race & Much More!

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

JUICE #1: MORE SPECULATION THAT REP. JOHN DELANEY MAY RUN FOR GOVERNOR - In comments to the media, Congressman John Delaney has been suggesting he "expects" to remain in the U.S. House next year (see an example in the YouTube video below):

Nevertheless, Maryland Juice is convinced that Delaney entering the contested race for Governor is a very real possibility. Here's one piece of evidence: last week gubernatorial candidate Doug Gansler came out with the following position regarding Maryland's bungled Obamacare enrollment system (excerpt below):
DOUG GANSLER: Last week, Jolene and I called on the state of Maryland to allow Maryland consumers to use the federal exchange website to purchase Maryland health insurance plans....

The Affordable Care Act was a great accomplishment, and Maryland should have led the way in implementing President Obama’s legacy legislation. But in the nearly four months since the website launched, most Marylanders still are unable to use it to buy insurance....
But in response to Gansler's position, Delaney saw fit to issue the following press response:

Delaney Statement on Gansler call for healthcare.gov option

WASHINGTON – Today, Attorney General Doug Gansler called for allowing Marylanders the option to purchase health insurance using the Federal health exchange website in addition to the Maryland Health Exchange website.

Congressman Delaney releases the following statement:

"I compliment Attorney General Gansler for suggesting a sensible solution on the Maryland Exchange which is the same solution we have been proposing for months"

I don't know about you, but this sounds to me like the type of short press response a rival candidate would send out!

JUICE #2: FORMER MD GOP CHAIR ALEX MOONEY LEADS MONEY RACE FOR WEST VIRGINIA CONGRESSIONAL SEAT - Maryland's former Republican Party Chair Alex Mooney moved to West Virginia last year to run for an open Congressional seat. Today the West Virginia Metro News reports that Mooney is leading the money race in his field (excerpt below):
WV METRO NEWS: Money, in and of itself, does not win elections. But then again, it’s awfully hard to win without it.  With that in mind, here are the latest campaign finance numbers for key candidates in the critical federal races in West Virginia for 2014....

The Republican field in the 2nd District continues to grow.  There are now seven candidates in the race: Alex Mooney, who was active in Maryland politics before moving to West Virginia a few years ago, has the most money of any GOP candidate in the race: $301,000.  Charlotte Lane has $255,000 in the bank after raising $215,000 in the 4th quarter.  Berkeley Springs pharmacist Ken Reed has $226,000 in his treasury, nearly all coming from a personal loan to his campaign.  Ron Walters, Jr., has $63,000 on hand....

JUICE #3: UPDATE ON RACE BETWEEN STATE SENATOR RICH MADALENO AND DANA BEYER - Two-time Delegate candidate Dana Beyer recently announced a Democratic Primary challenge to D18 State Senator Rich Madaleno. We have a few small updates to the race, starting with an endorsement for Madaleno from his colleague Sen. Jamie Raskin:
JAMIE RASKIN: Senator Madaleno is Montgomery County’s budgetary wizard who translates the progressive priorities of our delegation every day into the dollars and cents of the state budget.   I celebrate his service and treasure his remarkable contributions to our community.  I support his re-election.
The Washington Post's Frederick Kunkle also provided commentary from Sen. Madaleno about the primary challenge (excerpt below):
WASHINGTON POST: ... Madaleno (D-Montgomery) shrugged off the challenge. “I’m proud of my rather lengthy list of accomplishments,” he said Thursday. Madaleno, who joined the state Senate in 2007, said that as a member of the Budget and Taxation committee and the chairman of its Education, Business and Administration subcommittee, he has played an important role in shaping legislative initiatives as varied as the Dream Act, marriage equality, and generous funding for public education.

“I think the last four years in particular have been the most progressive in Maryland history,” Madaleno said. He also boasted of having received the support of all the other senators in the county’s delegation.

Asked about the significance of the matchup between a transgender and openly gay candidate, Madaleno said, “I think it says that people who, in years past, would never have thought of running for office, now find the doors wide open. There’s tremendously more acceptance. It’s been a remarkable transformation in 12 years.” Madaleno said there are now eight openly gay members in the Maryland General Assembly, a number that he said he believes is more than any other in the country....
Judging by the early commentary from some media figures, the D18 Senate race may be one of the more colorful contests in MoCo. Here are some examples from Twitter:

JUICE #4: MONTGOMERY COUNTY POLICE ENDORSE DOUG DUNCAN FOR COUNTY EXECUTIVE - Former MoCo Exec Doug Duncan recently received the endorsement of the County police union in his race for County Executive (excerpt below):
TORRIE COOKE, MOCO FOP: As President of Montgomery County Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 35, I am pleased to announce that we are endorsing Doug Duncan for Montgomery County Executive. 
Having been a police officer for 20 years now, and having worked with different administrations and politicians, I know that Doug is equipped to provide Montgomery County with whatever it needs to get us back on track. When looking at all of the positive traits of the county executive candidates, Doug displays the traits of a leader we can trust and who will stand by his word. 
We took a hard look at all the candidates, and decided that Doug’s commitment to the safety of Montgomery County and his passionate service to make a better tomorrow tipped the scales in his favor to earn our endorsement....

JUICE #5: MOCO, PRINCE GEORGE'S & BALTIMORE COUNTY EXECUTIVES CALL ON GUBERNATORIAL CANDIDATES TO ENDORSE SCHOOL FUNDING PUSH - Maryland Juice received the following letter from MoCo Exec Ike Leggett, Prince George's Exec Rushern Baker, and Baltimore County Exec Kevin Kamenetz urging the Democratic gubernatorial candidates to get behind their efforts to secure school construction funds for the "Big 3" jurisdictions. Identical version of the letter below were sent to Lt. Governor Anthony Brown, Attorney General Doug Gansler, and Delegate Heather Mizeur:

DOUG GANSLER RESPONDS: Gansler's campaign issued the following statement in response to the request from the three County Executives (excerpt below):

Gansler Supports County Executives' Effort to Seek Additional School Construction Funding

Sends Letter to County Executives Supporting Legislative Effort

Silver Spring, MARYLAND – Democratic gubernatorial candidate Attorney General Douglas Gansler today sent a letter  “strongly supporting” the efforts of Prince George’s County Executive Rushern L. Baker III,  Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz, and Montgomery County Executive Ike Leggett to secure more funding for school construction.

Gansler also issued the following statement:

“Portable classrooms, leaky roofs, and inadequate bathrooms, most of them found at schools in communities with the greatest need, are not the hallmarks of the best education system in the nation. They are symbolic of an education system that serves some and not others. I strongly support the County Executives’ efforts to seek additional education funds for school construction. With the endless stream of gambling revenue that the administration promised will fund our schools, we should fully expect Lt. Governor Brown to submit this as one of the signature pieces of legislation for the administration this session....”

JUICE #6: LT. GOVERNOR CANDIDATES DEBATE IN BALTIMORE THIS FRIDAY - Baltimore's B.E.S.T. Democratic Club is hosting a candidates debate with the three Democratic candidates for Lt. Governor. The event is taking place this Friday:
B.E.S.T. Democratic Club is hosting a round table where we can meet and hear from the Democratic Lt. Governor candidates.

The running mates are Rev. Delman Coates, the senior pastor of a Baptist church in Clinton, Md., Delegate Jolene Ivey from Prince George’s County, and Ken Ulman, the County Executive from Howard County.

To find out more information about each candidate and to ask your own questions join us on:

Date: Friday, February 7, 2014
Location: 139 N. Belnord, Baltimore, MD 21224
Time: 6:30 p.m.

JUICE #7: LT. GOVERNOR ANTHONY BROWN'S FATHER PASSED AWAY LAST WEEK - Maryland Juice received the following press release from Lt. Governor Anthony Brown's campaign reporting that the candidate's father passed away last week (excerpt below):


Huntington, N.Y. (January 30, 2014) - Today, it is with great sadness that we announce the news of the passing of Dr. Roy H. Brown at the age of 89. Lt. Governor Brown’s father, Dr. Roy Brown, was moved from the hospital to hospice late last week, and the Lt. Governor has taken the past few days to be with his family. Over the last four months, Dr. Brown has courageously battled cancer. This morning, he passed at home surrounded by his loving wife Lilly, his children and his family.

Below is the statement from Lt. Governor Brown on the passing of his father:

"My father was a man who led by example. He rose out of poverty in Kingston, Jamaica and overcame incredible odds to become a doctor. As a loving husband and father, he worked tirelessly to provide every opportunity for his children. As a family physician, he donated his services to countless people in need of care. He always put others first. That is the essence of who my father was and how he lived his life...."

JUICE #8: LIBERAL GROUPS CREATE WISH-LIST OF POLICIES FOR OBAMA, INCLUDING COMMENTARY FROM VALERIE ERVIN - Maryland Juice caught an interesting piece on Salon.com last week, with the following headline and explanation: "Send Arne Duncan to Mars!: A State of the Union wish list for liberals. We asked left-of-center groups what they hope to hear in the president's speech tonight. Here are the best replies." Notably, the round-up of commentary included remarks from former MoCo Councilmember Valerie Ervin. I flagged a few additional reform suggestions below:
SALON.COM: "In the State of the Union President Obama should take a stand against the lockup quota that requires Immigration and Customs Enforcement to imprison at minimum 34,000 immigrants at any given time." - Silky Shah, interim executive director, Detention Watch Network

"… the Citizens United decision has given wealthy interests a megaphone so big it drowns out the rest of our voices. President Obama should put the voters back in charge by announcing a plan for public financing of federal elections, to allow every voice to be heard.” – Valerie Ervin, executive director, Center for Working Families

“I hope that he vows to work with Congress to change the law with regard to the NSA bulk collection, and makes a spirited defense of civil liberties even as he attempts to keep our nation safe....  It would be important for his legacy for him to distinguish himself from the Big Brother policies of the Bush administration and to rein in the surveillance state.” – Laura Murphy, director, ACLU Washington Legislative Office

"The key thing that the president needs to do is articulate a vision of a future in which America is no longer ‘exceptional’ in its rates of incarceration but merely average …  As for drug policy specifically, the most important thing he could do would be to question the need to take away anyone’s freedom simply for possessing or using a drug." – Ethan Nadelmann, executive director, Drug Policy Alliance

"President Obama should start by apologizing for the recent comments of Secretary of Education Arne Duncan that parents who oppose the harsh overtesting regime that has afflicted our schools are just upset that their children aren’t smart enough.... He will announce the resumption of manned space flight, starting with a trip to Mars by Arne Duncan and Bill Gates, where they will try out their education experiments on any inhabitants they find there...." —  Leonie Haimson, executive director, Class Size Matters

JUICE #9: MONTGOMERY COUNTY EXECUTIVE & COUNCIL CANDIDATES TO SPEAK AT FORUM ON RENTERS ISSUES - Maryland Juice received the following event announcement from the MoCo Renters Alliance noting that all three County Exec candidates (Phil Andrews, Doug Duncan & Ike Leggett) will be speaking at a March 5th renters policy forum:
RENTERS ALLIANCE: In a sign of the growing influence of organized renters raising the volume of their voices on renter issues, all of the candidates have confirmed their participation at our next candidates forum. Join us Wednesday, March 5th at the Silver Spring Civic Center for the first-ever county candidates forum focused on rental housing issues. County Executive candidates Isiah Leggett, Doug Duncan, Phil Andrews and Jim Shallek have all confirmed as has each of the County Council candidates--incumbents and challengers. Seating is limited. Join us and sign up for this exciting and historic event and lend your voice to our movement to establish renters' rights and security in our communities....
Here are some details on the event:
Silver Spring Civic Center
1 Veterans Place
Silver Spring, MD 20910
Wednesday, March 5, 2014 from 6:30 PM to 10:00 PM

JUICE #10: US SENATOR BARBARA MIKULSKI IN MOCO SAT 2/15 FOR DISCUSSION OF GMO'S & FOOD POLICY - Maryland Juice received the following event announcement from the Takoma Park-Silver Spring Co-Op. U.S. Senator Barbara Mikulski is expected to be in MoCo to talk about food policy and "genetically modified organisms" (aka GMO's). Indeed, GMO's are becoming an increasingly heated policy topic, as big corporations like Monsanto continue to try and sell expensive GMO seeds to farmers around the world and claim "patents" to own our global food supply:
Co-op’s Annual Food and Public Policy Series:
Historic Takoma Building 7328 Carroll Ave. Takoma Park MD 20912.

Saturday, Feb 15, 1-4 pm
Invited Guest: Barbara Mikulski

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