Archive: October 2008

Leggett and O'Malley On The Line For Slots

Robocalls are being made to households in Montgomery County by County Executive Isiah Leggett (D) and Gov. Martin O'Malley (D), urging voters to support the slot-machine gambling referendum on election day. It's paid for by For Maryland For Our Future,...

By Miranda Spivack | October 31, 2008; 3:35 PM ET | Comments (3)

A Word on Registering to Vote at the MVA

State elections officials continue to try to dispel misinformation before Tuesday's vote. One issue that may cause confusion: Some Maryland residents who think they registered to vote through the state's Motor Vehicle Administration did not complete the required two-step process...

By Rosalind Helderman | October 31, 2008; 11:13 AM ET | Comments (1)

Maryland Dems Push Early Voting, Rev Up Obama Vols

Top Maryland Democrats, including Sen. Benjamin L. Cardin, U.S. Rep. Donna F. Edwards and Prince George's County Executive Jack B. Johnson, joined at Sen. Barack Obama's Prince George's headquarters today to urge Maryland voters to approve a constitutional amendment that...

By Rosalind Helderman | October 30, 2008; 2:18 PM ET | Comments (0)

Steele Stumps for McCain in Va.

There's not much chance that Republican presidential nominee John McCain is going to win Maryland's 10 electoral votes. So some Maryland Republicans, including one of the state's political stars, are traveling to Virginia and other battleground states to try to...

By Anne Bartlett | October 30, 2008; 10:55 AM ET | Comments (2)

MoCo Ballot Measure Opponents Get Ahead of the News

Opponents of a Montgomery County ballot measure that would make it more difficult to raise the limit on property tax revenue are poised to send out their first mailing to voters. But at least part of the message is premature....

By Ann Marimow | October 29, 2008; 12:23 PM ET | Comments (9)

Breast Cancer Survivors, Ringed By Bras, Thank O'Malley

As Annapolis rallies go, this one stood out. Organizers ringed Lawyer's Mall, a familiar site adjacent to the State House for such events, with what they said were 2,600 bras. A sign at this morning's event read: "Don't Leave Women...

By John Wagner | October 29, 2008; 10:45 AM ET | Comments (0)

Va. Gov Thanks Md. Dems for Help

Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine (D) roused Maryland Democrats at the party's annual gala in Baltimore last night, thanking Gov. Martin O'Malley (D) and other party leaders for sending volunteers to the Old Dominion to help campaign for Sen. Barack Obama....

By Lisa Rein | October 28, 2008; 5:25 PM ET | Comments (0)

O'Malley Pitches Mid-Day Voting -- and Slots Measure

Gov. Martin O'Malley (D), flanked by city leaders at a Baltimore elementary school this morning, urged voters to arrive at their polling place between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. next Tuesday to avoid long lines. What he didn't do was...

By Lisa Rein | October 28, 2008; 3:09 PM ET | Comments (4)

Anti-Slots Leader Decries Franchot's Tactics

Charles E. Graham, the chairman of Marylanders United To Stop Slots, said today that he is considering stepping down out of frustration with the tactics of Comptroller Peter Franchot (D), the most visible member of the anti-slots group. Graham, the...

By John Wagner | October 28, 2008; 12:31 PM ET | Comments (1)

IG's Role Should Remain Unchanged, Panel Says

Montgomery's charter review commission has given a preliminary thumbs down to a proposal that would bring the inspector general's office under the executive branch, foreshadowing a likely no vote next spring. At a recent meeting, the panel voted 8 to...

By Phyllis Jordan | October 28, 2008; 10:09 AM ET | Comments (0)

First Pray, Then Vote

Perhaps, as the frenzied presidential campaign comes to a close, a moment of contemplation is in order. That's what County Council Chairman Samuel H. Dean (D-Mitchellville) and his wife Donna seem to believe. The two are organizing a prayer vigil...

By Rosalind Helderman | October 28, 2008; 8:14 AM ET | Comments (0)

Prince George's Johnson Says "No" to Slots

Prince George's County Executive Jack B. Johnson (D) said this morning that he would vote against the Nov. 4 statewide ballot measure to legalize slot machines. Johnson, who has long opposed bringing gambling to his county, had not before taken...

By Ann Marimow | October 27, 2008; 4:30 PM ET | Comments (11)

Prince George's Already Has Lines to Vote Absentee

The wait in line to cast absentee ballots in-person at the Prince George's County Board of Elections office has now reached an hour and 25 minutes, the county's elections administrator said today. Alisha L. Alexander said voters were in good...

By Rosalind Helderman | October 27, 2008; 2:57 PM ET | Comments (0)

Busch: People Can Make Up Own Minds On Slots

During the previous administration, House Speaker Michael E. Busch (D-Anne Arundel) was repeatedly demonized or canonized -- depending on one's perspective -- for keeping slot machines out of Maryland. Former governor Robert L. Ehrlich (R) was among his harshest critics....

By John Wagner | October 27, 2008; 12:42 PM ET | Comments (2)

Leggett Plays Unintentional Role in Pro-Slots Ad

Despite agonizing for weeks about his position on next month's statewide referendum on slots, Montgomery County Executive Isiah Leggett (D) is unwittingly playing a prominent role in a pro-slots radio ad that began airing this week. The ad, titled "Most...

By Anne Bartlett | October 24, 2008; 10:34 AM ET | Comments (1)

Md. State Police Spied on Climate Change Activists

Three members of a Maryland environmental group that fights climate change and promotes the use of alternative energy sources were wrongly classified as terrorists by the state police. Mike Tidwell, founder and director of the Chespeake Climate Action Network, and...

By Lisa Rein | October 23, 2008; 4:03 PM ET | Comments (3)

Maryland's Voter Registration Up 10 Percent

The Associated Press had provided the number of voters by county and the percentage increase from the 2004 presidential election. Only Talbot County had a decrease. Allegany 42,171, 5 percent Anne Arundel 329,448, 7 percent Baltimore City 368,186, 20 percent Baltimore County 502,354, 14 percent Calvert 55,563, 12 percent Caroline 17,596, 13 percent Carroll 105,451, 10 percent Cecil 58,935, 19 percent Charles 87,748, 19 percent Dorchester 19,353, 9 percent Frederick 134,273, 11 percent Garrett 18,102, 2 percent Harford 149,661, 8 percent Howard 175,121, 7 percent Kent 12,760, 10 percent Montgomery 557,730, 8 percent Prince George's 494,859, 6 percent

By Lisa Rein | October 23, 2008; 3:43 PM ET | Comments (0)

Ambulance Fee Appears Headed for Defeat

County Executive Isiah Leggett's proposed ambulance fee does not have enough votes to pass the County Council, vice president Phil Andrews said this afternoon. Andrews said that he and four of his colleagues on the nine member council would not...

By Ann Marimow | October 22, 2008; 4:27 PM ET | Comments (4)

High Turnout = More Voting Machines

Maryland elections chief Linda Lamone today predicted a voter turnout of at least 85 percent on Election Day --and 90 percent in some areas. Final registration numbers won't be available until tomorrow morning, but the number of new voters surged...

By Lisa Rein | October 22, 2008; 12:21 PM ET | Comments (1)

An O'Malley-Ehrlich Rematch?

There have been rumblings that Bob Ehrlich, the only Republican to be elected governor in Maryland in the past four decades, might give it a try again in 2010. That would likely mean taking on the Democrat who ousted him...

By Phyllis Jordan | October 22, 2008; 9:38 AM ET | Comments (30)

Pro-Slots TV Ads Begin in Washington Area

The first pro-slots television ad to hit the Washington-area market began airing today, playing up the pitch that slots will help Maryland recapture hundreds of millions of dollarsh spent by gamblers out of state. The narrator begins with a claim...

By Lisa Rein | October 21, 2008; 4:42 PM ET | Comments (0)

MoCo's Firefighters Threaten Referendum

Montgomery County's volunteer firefighter organization put elected officials on notice this morning that it will not back away from its opposition to a proposed ambulance fee. If the County Council approves the fee this fall, the volunteers said they would...

By Ann Marimow | October 21, 2008; 12:53 PM ET | Comments (2)

Gilchrest Speaks Out at Environmental Tribute

Last night's League of Conservation Voters dinner in Annapolis was a virtual who's who among Maryland Democrats. But a departing Republican stole the show. Rep. Wayne Gilchrest (D-Md.), who was defeated in the GOP primary in the 1st Congressional District...

By John Wagner | October 21, 2008; 10:09 AM ET | Comments (0)

Pro-Slots Pollster: Measure is Favored By Voters

In a memo written last week, a pollster for Maryland's leading pro-slots group says the "slots referendum is poised for a solid victory" on Nov. 4. The memo, prepared for For Maryland For Our Future by Frederick S. Yang, says...

By John Wagner | October 20, 2008; 1:51 PM ET | Comments (11)

Steele as GOP Cabinet Pick?

Former Maryland lieutenant governor Michael S. Steele (R), who gave a prime-time speech at last month's Republican National Convention in St. Paul, Minn., is being mentioned as a possible Cabinet secretary if Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) wins the presidency. Steele...

By Anne Bartlett | October 20, 2008; 10:19 AM ET | Comments (9)

Pr. Geo.'s Man Pens Obama Ode

During the day, Jeff Logan works as an administrator at the Prince George's County jail. But in his off-hours, his passion is music. And lately he's turned to his music in an effort to elect Sen. Barack Obama president. Just...

By Rosalind Helderman | October 17, 2008; 2:57 PM ET | Comments (2)

Down to the Wire in Md. District 1

The race to succeed ousted Rep. Wayne Gilchrest (R) in Maryland's first congressional district might as well be a television soap opera, it's had so many twists and turns. The outcome is anyone's guess. Here is coverage by reporter William...

By Anne Bartlett | October 17, 2008; 10:45 AM ET | Comments (0)

O'Malley Blames Bush, Talks Up Obama

Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley (D) traveled last night to Long Island to witness the final presidential debate between Barack Obama and John McCain at Hofstra University. It sounded as though O'Malley was working on his talking points earlier in the...

By Anne Bartlett | October 16, 2008; 9:35 AM ET | Comments (9)

Duncan to Leave University of Maryland Post

Former Montgomery County Executive Douglas M. Duncan has resigned his post at the University of Maryland at College Park. In a statement late today, Duncan said he was proud of his tenure and did not "come to the decision lightly,"...

By Ann Marimow | October 15, 2008; 1:41 PM ET | Comments (10)

Pr. Geo.'s Education Group: No Postion on Slots

The Prince George's County Educators' Association voted overwhelmingly Monday against taking a position on the Nov. 4 referendum on slots, a move that had the state's anti-slots campaign declaring a small victory. According to Tom Smith, the deputy campaign manager...

By Rosalind Helderman | October 14, 2008; 2:31 PM ET | Comments (5)

Anti-slots Group Has A Few Sizable Donors, Too

A group fighting the November ballot issue to bring slots to Maryland has fewer big-money donors than the group promoting the referendum. But some notable contributors have given significant sums to Marylanders United To Stop Slots, according to a report...

By John Wagner | October 13, 2008; 11:14 AM ET | Comments (0)

Leggett's MoCo Agenda Now on YouTube

County Executive Isiah Leggett (D) is not known for the aggressive public relations tactics of his predecessor, Douglas M. Duncan, or D.C. Mayor Adrian M. Fenty. But Leggett has recently taken his agenda to a new medium that not even...

By Anne Bartlett | October 10, 2008; 10:11 AM ET | Comments (3)

O'Malley Asked to Reverse Police on Spy File Access

The ACLU of Maryland today asked Gov. Martin O'Malley (D) to reverse a decision by the state police not to allow 53 nonviolent political activists wrongly classified as terrorists to get copies of their files and to review them with...

By Anne Bartlett | October 9, 2008; 4:19 PM ET | Comments (1)

GOP: Defeat Early Voting Amendment

Republicans in the General Assembly today announced their opposition to a proposed constitutional amendment on next month's ballot that would authorize early voting up to two weeks before Maryland elections. House Minority Leader Anthony J. O'Donnell (R-Calvert) said the measure...

By Anne Bartlett | October 9, 2008; 3:50 PM ET | Comments (3)

Leggett Seeks $50 Million in Mid-Year Cuts

Montgomery County Executive Isiah Leggett (D) has called on government department and agency leaders to make mid-year budget cuts of $50 million to conserve resources to cope with a projected $250 million shortfall for fiscal 2010. He cited anticipated declines...

By Anne Bartlett | October 9, 2008; 10:34 AM ET | Comments (5)

Hutchins Among Keith Olbermann's "Worst Persons"

Former Maryland Police Superintendent Thomas E. Hutchins won national recognition last night -- but not the kind one typically brags about. Hutchins was designated as the runner-up for "Worst Person in the World," a nightly feature on Keith Olbermann's "Countdown"...

By John Wagner | October 9, 2008; 6:19 AM ET | Comments (14)

High Drama At Maryland's Death Penalty Commission

A commission examining capital punishment in Maryland produced some high drama yesterday, as an exonerated death row inmate tangled with the state's attorney from the jurisdiction that sentenced him to death. Baltimore County State's Attorney Scott Schellenberger, a member of...

By John Wagner | October 8, 2008; 11:11 AM ET | Comments (10)

Franchot Asks O'Malley To Call Off The "Attack Dogs"

Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot (D) said today that he was the victim of a "Swift-boat style" attack carried about by pro-slots forces and called on Gov. Martin O'Malley (D) to "call off the attack dogs, stop the negative campaigning and...

By John Wagner | October 7, 2008; 6:14 PM ET | Comments (16)

Franchot: Won't Get In Gutter On Slots

Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot (D), a leading slots opponent, tried to turn the tables on slots supporters in a fundraising solicitation over the weekend. In an email Friday, For Maryland For Our Future, a pro-slots group, announced it was starting...

By John Wagner | October 6, 2008; 11:55 AM ET | Comments (3)

Supporters, Foes Focus on MoCo Tax Amendment

Montgomery County voters will be asked Nov. 4 to decide whether to amend the county's charter to make it more difficult for the nine-member council to exceed the limit on property tax revenue. Real estate broker Robin Ficker's proposal would...

By Anne Bartlett | October 6, 2008; 9:05 AM ET | Comments (11)

Edwards, Cummings Vote "Yes" on Bailout

Two Maryland Democrats were among those who changed their votes on the Wall Street bailout plan since Monday, shifting from opposition to support and helping push the bill toward passage. Freshman Rep. Donna F. Edwards (D) and veteran Rep. Elijah...

By Rosalind Helderman | October 3, 2008; 2:47 PM ET | Comments (11)

Slots Proponents: About To Go Up On Baltimore TV

A pro-slots group says it is about to air the first television ads related to Maryland's upcoming referendum on expanding gambling. In an email to supporters of its efforts, For Maryland For Our Future said the ads are needed to...

By John Wagner | October 3, 2008; 11:55 AM ET | Comments (1)

Opponents of MoCo's Transgender Law Head Back to Court

The lawsuit filed in Montgomery County Circuit Court this week by opponents of new transgender protections asks the court to block the law from taking effect until residents have an opportunity to vote on the measure. The legal challenge, filed...

By Ann Marimow | October 3, 2008; 9:04 AM ET | Comments (12)

Leggett Plans Trade Trip to Asia

Montgomery County Executive Isiah Leggett (D) departs next week for a two-week economic development trip to Korea and China. The Asia tour follows Leggett's trade mission last year to Israel. The trip's price tag for the county executive and his...

By Anne Bartlett | October 2, 2008; 10:05 AM ET | Comments (10)

Slots Foes Want Ads Yanked

The anti-slots group Marylanders United to Stop Slots says it is asking 12 radio stations in Washington and Baltimore to pull two pro-slots ads that the group considers "false and misleading." The ads by For Maryland, For Our Future...

By Phyllis Jordan | October 1, 2008; 2:21 PM ET | Comments (0)

 

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