Archive: March 2006

Senate Candidates Set to Debate

Several of the Democratic candidates for the U.S. Senate will participate in a forum at 2 p.m. Sunday in the Montgomery County Council office building's, third-floor hearing room, 100 Maryland Ave., in Rockville. The organizers say that , candidates Allan...

By Phyllis Jordan | March 31, 2006; 2:48 PM ET | Comments (12)

Child Abuse Bill Stalled

A bill approved last week by Maryland's House of Delegates that would extend the time allowed for victims of childhood sexual abuse to sue abusers and their employers is languishing in a Senate committee, alarming supporters who fear that...

By Phyllis Jordan | March 31, 2006; 2:13 PM ET | Comments (0)

Steele's New Spokesman

Maryland Lt. Gov. Michael S. Steele (R) has hired a former Capitol Hill press secretary to serve as the new spokesman for his U.S. Senate campaign. Doug Heye, who has been serving as U.S. Senator Richard Burr's communications director, will...

By Phyllis Jordan | March 31, 2006; 6:32 AM ET | Comments (5)

School Takeover Spurs Political Questions

Even as they went on offense in the long-running battle over how to improve Baltimore schools, state education officials this week appeared a bit defensive. Before and after the State Board of Education's vote yesterday to seize control of four...

By Phyllis Jordan | March 30, 2006; 1:57 PM ET | Comments (4)

Progressive Politicking

Democratic candidates in Montgomery County are usually eager for a chance to win an endorsement from Progressive Maryland, a liberal advocacy group with a loyal network of supporters in the county. But the three Capitol Hill staffers running for the...

By Phyllis Jordan | March 30, 2006; 6:29 AM ET | Comments (26)

Voting without ever getting off the couch?

The continuing saga over how Marylanders will cast their ballots in the 2006 elections has taken another turn today. A Senate committee is expected today to approve a plan that would have every Maryland voter cast their ballot through the...

By | March 29, 2006; 3:52 PM ET | Comments (1)

Shattuck at the State House

For the first time since ratepayers learned that their energy bills could jump as much as 72 percent this summer, Republican Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. (R) and the top Democrats in the General Assembly met together with Constellation Energy...

By Ann Marimow | March 29, 2006; 9:51 AM ET | Comments (3)

Hope for Homeless Measures Rises, Falls

It looked for a brief moment yesterday like Sen. Alex X. Mooney (R-Frederick) might make some progress in making Maryland the first state in the nation to include homeless people in its hate crimes law. The Senate rejected the measure...

By John Wagner | March 29, 2006; 9:51 AM ET | Comments (0)

Back and forth on the PSC bill

Tempers flared today on the floor of the Maryland Senate over legislation that would effectively fire Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich's appointees to the Public Service Commission in the wake of proposed electric rate hikes of up to 72 percent. "It's...

By John Wagner | March 28, 2006; 7:37 PM ET | Comments (4)

Correction... Duncan's 'Old' Ad

It turns out the Internet ad Montgomery County Executive Douglas M. Duncan's (D) campaign released yesterday isn't so new. Yesterday, Duncan's campaign for governor sent out a new release heralding a new ad on their website. Maryland Moment published an...

By Tim Craig | March 28, 2006; 4:07 PM ET | Comments (11)

Don't bet on Duncan-Schmoke

Former Baltimore mayor Kurt L. Schmoke (D) said yesterday he definitely won't be running on County Executive Douglas M. Duncan's ticket. "You can kill that idea," Schmoke said in an interview. " I will not be on the ticket. Nobody...

By Tim Craig | March 28, 2006; 4:45 AM ET | Comments (17)

Another Ad for Duncan

Montgomery County Executive Douglas M. Duncan (D), a candidate for governor, unveiled a new biographical ad today on his website . The 60-second spot, titled "Bigger," recounts Duncan's childhood, his tenure as Rockville mayor and his effort as county executive...

By Tim Craig | March 27, 2006; 4:54 PM ET | Comments (12)

Mandel Subject of Ethics Probe

A second member of the University System of Maryland Board of Regents is now under investigation by the board for possible ethics violations in connection with his activities in Annapolis. Marvin Mandel, a former governor who was appointed to the...

By Phyllis Jordan | March 27, 2006; 2:46 PM ET | Comments (1)

Free the Nats

Montgomery County Executive Douglas M. Duncan was among the politicians last weekend calling on Comcast Cable to allow the 1.3 million subscribers in the region to watch Washington National's games on their cable channels during the upcoming baseball season. In...

By Ann Marimow | March 27, 2006; 11:36 AM ET | Comments (7)

Regents Fundraising Ban

Legislation that would prohibit members of the university system's board of regents from political fundraising moved swiftly through the House of Delegates this week. Supporters have made no secret that one of their aims is to force Richard Hug, Ehrlich's...

By Phyllis Jordan | March 25, 2006; 12:58 PM ET | Comments (0)

Duncan Supporters Leaflet O'Malley Event

Baltimore Mayor Martin O'Malley received a warm reception last night from more than 200 people gathered inside a middle school auditorium on the home turf of his Democratic rival for governor, Montgomery County Executive Douglas M. Duncan. But what happened...

By John Wagner | March 24, 2006; 8:27 AM ET | Comments (25)

O'Malley Backs Crime Audit Bill

It's a bill backed by his critics and aimed at answering a nagging question raised in his campaign for governor: Did Baltimore Mayor Martin O'Malley cook the books on the city's crime stats. So when O'Malley showed up in Annapolis...

By Phyllis Jordan | March 23, 2006; 6:02 PM ET | Comments (2)

Steele Considers Suit

A lawyer for Michael S. Steele said today that the lieutenant governor and U.S. Senate candidate may file a civil lawsuit as a means to learn more about an episode in which a Democratic researcher in Washington improperly accessed in...

By Phyllis Jordan | March 22, 2006; 4:53 PM ET | Comments (6)

County Connections Blog Opens

Our sister blog, County Connections is opening today, offering local news bits from Montgomery, Prince George's, Frederick, Howard and Anne Arundel counties. Check it out at http://blog.washingtonpost.com/countyconnections/...

By Phyllis Jordan | March 22, 2006; 3:34 PM ET | Comments (0)

Montgomery Poll Shows Modest Lead for Duncan

A new poll shows Montgomery County Executive Douglas M. Duncan with only a modest lead in his home county over Baltimore Mayor Martin O'Malley in the Democratic primary for governor. But Duncan's camp quickly dismissed the numbers, since they came...

By Phyllis Jordan | March 21, 2006; 5:40 PM ET | Comments (18)

Cheney to Host for Steele

Vice President Dick Cheney will host a reception for Maryland Lt. Gov. Michael Steele in April, the latest in a series of fundraising events hosted by President Bush and his team. The $1,000-per-person Cheney event will be held at the...

By | March 21, 2006; 5:14 PM ET | Comments (3)

Senate Seeks Additional Advise and Consent

Over cries of partisanship from Republicans, the Maryland Senate today gave preliminary approval to a bill that would require Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr.'s cabinet secretaries to face a second confirmation vote by the chamber if the state's first GOP...

By John Wagner | March 21, 2006; 12:34 PM ET | Comments (1)

Steele on Sudan

Maryland Lt. Gov. Michael S. Steele has called on the managers of the state's pension system to divest its holdings in companies doing business in Sudan. Steele, who is a Republican candidate for U.S. Senate in Maryland, said he was...

By Phyllis Jordan | March 20, 2006; 7:24 PM ET | Comments (3)

Indecent TV?

An e-mailer writes to ask if the FCC should be looking at the drug awareness program produced by Maryland first lady Kendel Ehrlich. Sixteen episodes of the first lady's talk show, "Live Right: Straight Talk on Substance Abuse" are available...

By | March 20, 2006; 10:22 AM ET | Comments (5)

Resign. But first, can you spare some cash...

On March 13, Baltimore Mayor Martin O'Malley stood near the headquarters of the Public Service Commission and called for Chairman Kenneth Schisler to resign. O'Malley lashed out at Schisler, a former Republican delegate, over skyrocketing electricity rates his commission had...

By | March 20, 2006; 10:06 AM ET | Comments (0)

Ehrlich on Schaefer

Republican Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. is chalking up the rough treatment he got from Comptroller William Donald Schaefer last week as, well, just Schaefer being Schaefer. Ehrlich was the primary target of a nearly half-hour rant at the outset...

By Phyllis Jordan | March 17, 2006; 9:59 PM ET | Comments (1)

Nevins's Many Hats

The Post's look this morning at the many hats of David Nevins, the chairman of the University System of Maryland's board of regents detailed his ties to Constellation Energy Group. But it didn't mention that his firm, Nevins & Associates,...

By | March 17, 2006; 10:38 AM ET | Comments (0)

"Pinata" Remark Stirs Ire

Debate over this year's medical malpractice bills turned ugly in the House Judiciary Committee late Tuesday night when a lobbyist chose an unfortunate metaphor while addressing Del. Ana Sol Gutierrez. Gutierrez (D-Montgomery) had been grilling lobbyist Joseph A. Schwartz...

By Phyllis Jordan | March 15, 2006; 5:49 PM ET | Comments (19)

Rate Hikes Generate Ad

It didn't take long for electricity rate hikes facing Maryland homeowners (as much as 72 percent for Baltimore Gas & Electric's customers and a proposed 39 percent for Pepco's) to become fodder for partisan politics in Annapolis. Now the Maryland...

By Phyllis Jordan | March 15, 2006; 5:18 PM ET | Comments (1)

O'Malley Looks to Paint Montgomery Green

Montgomery County Executive Douglas M. Duncan (D) may soon be second-guessing his decision to eliminate the county's restriction on the posting of yard signs. Until earlier this year, Montgomery had a law that requires property owners to remove lawn signs...

By Tim Craig | March 14, 2006; 6:41 PM ET | Comments (0)

Smackdown in the Senate

The Maryland Senate, until today, had rejected only one of several hundred nominees put forward by Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. (R) for state boards and commissions. The count now stands at six. By lopsided votes, the Democrat-led chamber rejected...

By Phyllis Jordan | March 14, 2006; 2:37 PM ET | Comments (0)

Schmoke Aids Duncan on Schools

Montgomery County Executive Douglas M. Duncan has tapped former Baltimore Mayor Kurt L. Schmoke for help in an ongoing tiff over Duncan's level of commitment to Baltimore schools. In a letter this month, Brian D. Morris, chairman of the Baltimore...

By John Wagner | March 14, 2006; 1:48 PM ET | Comments (0)

Memory Blackout, Part II

Maryland Republicans continued to finger Democrats for starting the ball rolling on electric deregulation, which now has residential customers girding for double-digit rate increases. The state GOP executive director put out a press release yesterday calling on Senate President Thomas...

By | March 13, 2006; 8:56 PM ET | Comments (0)

Memory Blackout

Last week, Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. took the General Assembly to task for passing electricity deregulation in 1999. That same year, though, Ehrlich, himself, cast a vote for electricity deregulation when the matter came before the House Energy and...

By | March 13, 2006; 10:07 AM ET | Comments (0)

The Blame Game

Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. and his aides used a press appearance in Annapolis Friday to try and pin the blame for the impending electricity rate hikes on Democrats in the General Assembly. They said Democrats led by Senate President...

By | March 11, 2006; 3:01 PM ET | Comments (0)

Start the debates...Maybe?

Montgomery County Executive Doug Duncan (D) says he's ready to start debating his opponent for the Democratic nomination for governor, Baltimore Mayor Martin O'Malley. "I am ready whenever," said Duncan, who trails O'Malley in the polls and fundraising. "I say...

By Tim Craig | March 11, 2006; 5:51 AM ET | Comments (0)

Lichtman's Big Splash

U.S. Senate candidate Allan Lichtman has plunged into the Democratic primary contest, literally jumping into the C&O Canal in a business suit for the campaign's first television commercial that begins airing today on television stations that air in the Washington...

By Ann Marimow | March 10, 2006; 3:03 PM ET | Comments (0)

Impeachment Plan Stuffed

A legislative committee rejected last night an effort by Anne Arundel Del. Donald Dwyer Jr. to remove from the bench the Baltimore circuit judge who ruled in January that the state's same-sex marriage ban was unconstitutional. In a heated debate...

By | March 10, 2006; 9:36 AM ET | Comments (0)

The ICC Enters the Governor's Race

Montgomery County Executive Doug Duncan is accusing his opponent for the Democratic nomination for governor, Baltimore Mayor Martin O'Malley, of "waffling" over whether the Intercounty Connector should be built. The building of the proposed east-west highway, which would link Interstate...

By Phyllis Jordan | March 9, 2006; 6:34 PM ET | Comments (0)

Power Politics

As homeowners absorbed the news that their electric bills could go up as much as 72 percent (38.5 percent for Pepco's customers and 72 for BG&E's), the candidates for governor were quick to weigh in. Montgomery County Executive Doug Duncan,...

By Phyllis Jordan | March 9, 2006; 2:10 PM ET | Comments (0)

A maestro in the Senate

Yesterday's five-hour Senate filibuster over stem cell research featured plenty of asides from lawmakers intent on keeping the discussion going. Colleagues learned this, for instance, about Minority Whip Andrew P. Harris (R-Baltimore), who held court longer than any other member:...

By John Wagner | March 9, 2006; 9:12 AM ET | Comments (0)

Duncan's Video Debut

Theoretically, it could be the first commercial of this fall's Democratic primary for governor. But the video produced by Montgomery County Executive Doug Duncan isn't running on TV just yet. He sent it out on an email to supporters yesterday....

By Phyllis Jordan | March 8, 2006; 10:37 AM ET | Comments (0)

Blame it on the Judge

Del. Donald Dwyer Jr. made good yesterday on his threat to try and impeach the Baltimore circuit judge who ruled recently that the state could not prevent gays and lesbians from marrying. His "Address For The Removal Of Judge...

By Phyllis Jordan | March 7, 2006; 6:45 PM ET | Comments (12)

Steele Selects New Manager

Lt. Gov. Michael Steele today named a new manager for his U.S. Senate bid, tapping a Republican operative from Maine who served as political director for U.S. Sen. Olympia Snow's successful campaign in 2000. Michael Leavitt's first day on the...

By Phyllis Jordan | March 7, 2006; 5:03 PM ET | Comments (0)

The First Lady's New Career

Governor Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. and his wife Kendel Ehrlich hit the talk show circuit this morning to defend the first lady's job with Comcast. Her job, as reported in Tuesday's Post, involved producing and starring in a television talk...

By | March 7, 2006; 9:24 AM ET | Comments (11)

Santa Claus and the Grinch

In the next two weeks, Senate budget writers will try to shave $100 million from the spending plan proposed by Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich, Jr. Leading up to those decisions, the Republican governor held a series of news conferences last...

By Ann Marimow | March 6, 2006; 5:32 PM ET | Comments (2)

The Other Side of the Fence

There was no suspense surrounding this afternoon's endorsement announcement. Word had gotten out last week that the AFL-CIO is backing the gubernatorial bid of Baltimore Mayor Martin O'Malley (D). But the event was still noteworthy because its location. O'Malley appeared...

By Phyllis Jordan | March 6, 2006; 4:33 PM ET | Comments (1)

Steele Plans Card Fundraiser

Lt. Gov. Michael S. Steele (R) is dipping back into President Bush's campaign finance donor pool this week as he continues to raise money to fund his campaign for U.S. Senate. This time, Steele will be in New York at...

By Phyllis Jordan | March 5, 2006; 9:44 AM ET | Comments (5)

Who Pays for Elections?

With all the competitive races in Maryland this election season and the requisite fundraising, advocates for the public financing of political campaigns believe their chances are greatly improved this session. Groups, such as Common Cause and Progressive Maryland, are starting...

By Phyllis Jordan | March 4, 2006; 3:12 PM ET | Comments (3)

Duncan Vows to be "Pro-Choice Governor"

Montgomery County Executive Doug Duncan warned yesterday that the next governor of Maryland might well have to reaffirm the state's support for abortion and pledged to be "Maryland's pro-choice governor" if voters him elect him this fall. Speaking at...

By Phyllis Jordan | March 2, 2006; 5:09 PM ET | Comments (3)

Stem cell meltdown?

Maryland senators offered a preview this morning of fireworks to come when the chamber starts floor debate next week on a bill authorizing state funding of stem cell research. Senate Minority Whip Andrew P. Harris (R-Baltimore County) complained in open...

By John Wagner | March 2, 2006; 12:13 PM ET | Comments (12)

Lights, Camera, Duncan!

Montgomery County Executive Doug Duncan and his staff appear to be increasingly eager for the perfect photo op as Duncan's Democratic campaign for governor heats up. At Monday's announcement of $24 million in federal funding for the Silver Spring transit...

By Phyllis Jordan | March 1, 2006; 6:04 PM ET | Comments (4)

A Silent Schaefer

A subdued William Donald Schaefer returned yesterday to the biweekly bureaucratic gathering that sparked ogle-gate. For nearly an hour, the typically verbose 84-year-old comptroller did not ask a single question or offer any opinion of the business before the board....

By Ann Marimow | March 1, 2006; 1:27 PM ET | Comments (0)

Clearing His Throat

Senator John Giannetti has been the toast of Annapolis , as word has spread of his heroics in an Annapolis restaurant Monday night -- he saved his most fierce political rival from choking on a hunk of seafood. And that's...

By | March 1, 2006; 11:36 AM ET | Comments (0)

 

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