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First Click -- Maryland

First Click

Your Daily Download of Maryland's Top Political News and Analysis

Tuesday, October 6, 2009:

Coming Soon to Baltimore: Twin Trials of the Mayor
   The latest developments in the legal saga of Baltimore Mayor Sheila Dixon are big news in Maryland's other major media market this morning.
   A judge on Monday denied a motion by the Democratic mayor of Maryland's largest city to dismiss a perjury indictment against her. She is now likely to face two trials, the first starting next month on charges that she stole gift cards for the needy. The timing of the second trial, on the perjury counts, is less clear.
   The Baltimore Sun reports that Dixon appears to be "soldiering on" despite the distraction.
   But "it is not good news from the standpoint of her being able to govern," notes Donald F. Norris, chairman of the Department of Public Policy at the University of Maryland Baltimore County, in a story by Annie Linskey.
   The Sun reports that Dixon, when asked how long she expects the legal saga to continue, referred the question to the state prosecutor, saying: "I don't know, you'll have to ask him."
   The report of The Daily Record's Brendan Kearney has a more legal tilt. He notes that Dixon's attorneys said they have the right to an immediate appeal, which likely would push the as-yet unscheduled perjury trial into early 2010.
   The Associated Press's Ben Nuckols writes that Dixon could be thrown out of office if convicted of any of the charges against her.
   While Monday's ruling was a victory for state prosecutor Robert A. Rohrbaugh, it was not a crippling blow to Dixon's defense, David Gray, an assistant professor at the University of Maryland School of Law, tells the AP.
   "That she lost her motion to dismiss, it's certainly disappointing (to Dixon), because I'm sure the mayor would like to get this off her plate as quickly as possible," Gray said. "But I doubt that it is a cause for tremendous despair with her and among her defense team."

Coming Soon in Washington: Confirmation of Tom Perez
   After months of delay, the U.S. Senate today is expected to approve the nomination of Thomas E. Perez of Montgomery County to head the Civil Rights division at the Justice Department, The Baltimore Sun reports.
   Perez, a former Montgomery County Council member, has most recently served in the O'Malley administration as secretary of the Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation -- and was recently replaced.
   The Sun reports that Perez's nomination is expected to be approved by a comfortable margin, according to aides to Maryland Sen. Benjamin L. Cardin (D-Md).

Briefly:

  • The Post's Robert Barnes wraps the appearance of Maryland Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler (D) before the U.S. Supreme Court into a story about Justice Sonia Sotomayor's first day on the bench.

  • Today, Gov. Martin O'Malley honors Department of Human Resources local social services directors.

  • On Facebook, former governor Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. (R) tells supporters to "stay tuned" for more events.

  • Penn National expands its gaming proposal for Cecil County as the state slots commisssion prepares to meet again on Wednesday.

  • By John Wagner  |  October 6, 2009; 6:27 AM ET
    Categories:  First Click , John Wagner  
    Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: 'Stay Tuned,' Ehrlich Tells Supporters
    Next: Live in Prince George's: County Land Up for Grabs

    Comments

    Last night night more than 600 developmentally disabled persons, their families, caregivers and advocates gathered at a town hall in Rockville and gave the 15 state and local legislators in attendance an earful. They were expressing concern, dismay and fear over the implications of the Maryland state budget cuts....it was a fantastic turnout -- a standing room only event -- that demonstrated Montgomery County's passion and resolve to stop the cuts...restore services....protect DDA services.

    Posted by: heatherf | October 6, 2009 1:45 PM | Report abuse

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