First Click, Maryland -- New Click next week
Your morning download of Maryland political news
Friday, April 16, 2010:
Time to shift gears.
The legislature has packed up and left Annapolis. Gov. Martin O'Malley (D) and Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. (R) will soon hit the campaign trail in earnest. And so, First Click will follow suit.
Beginning next week, we'll publish First Click on Mondays and Thursdays. On Mondays, you can count on a political road map to the week ahead. And on Thursdays, our take on who's up, down, and what the week has meant for every one's prospects in November.
Hopefully, our new format will keep from cluttering your inboxes over the summer, and give us a little extra time in between to bring you in-depth reporting on the candidates and what the election will mean for Maryland.
That said, if something big happens, don't be surprised to see a special "Campaign Click" or political news alert arrive another day of the week.
Thanks for reading and making First Click a success. We've appreciated your feedback and hope it's provided a little perspective during this year's session of the General Assembly.
And keep sending us your tips! See you on Monday.
News You Should Know
New faces to fill 2011 General Assembly
"Go ahead and recycle this year's legislative facebook," writes The Gazette's Alan Brody. "When the General Assembly reconvenes in January, the number of freshmen could rival the 45-member class of 2006. Already, eight delegates have announced plans to seek another office or retire, and at least 10 more are thought to be seriously considering following suit. Two Senate Republicans already have said they are leaving, and more than a dozen senators face potentially serious election challenges. That doesn't even take into account an anti-incumbent movement that may threaten seemingly safe officeholders, or other unknown factors."
Ehrlichs address tea party rallies
Both former governor Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. (R) and his wife, former first lady Kendel Ehrlich, appeared at some of the dozen or more tea party rallies held across Maryland on Thursday. In Westminster, Bob Ehrlich, who has declared a rematch with Gov. Martin O'Malley (D), "bemoaned characterizations of tea party groups as fringe elements in the media," reports Adam Bednar in the Carroll County Times. "'This is about workers, tax payers and small business people,' he told the crowd. ... He also called for tea party groups to refrain from becoming part of any one political party. '[This] movement needs to be independent and it shouldn't be connected to any party,' he said. However, one of his loudest applause lines came when he called for Republicans Rep. John Boehner and Sen. Mitch McConnell to take over leadership in Congress after the 2010 elections." In Towson, Kendel Ehrlich "stumped for her husband. ... The large turnout displayed 'the spirit of the times,' she said," reports The Baltimore Sun's Mary Gail Hare. "'This gathering shows that a lot of people who were not involved are getting active,' she said. 'This group's concerns for fiscal responsibility and no more taxes are near and dear to Bob Ehrlich's heart.' In her address, Ehrlich said, 'You don't look like an angry mob but more like concerned citizens.' In parting words that drew loud cheers, she said, 'Bob Ehrlich is the only thing that stands between you and a massive tax increase next year.'" ... Earlier in the day, Bob Ehrlich met with small business owners in Annapolis. O'Malley, meanwhile, spent the morning and early afternoon in Capitol Heights as part of his relaunched Capital for a Day program.
Regents to make 3 percent tuition increase official
"The University System of Maryland Board of Regents today is primed to end the four-year moratorium on public university tuition increases with a modest hike proposed in January by Gov. Martin O'Malley," reports Andrew Katz of Capital News Service. "The board meets at the University of Maryland University College in Adelphi to vote on the 3 percent increase, which would add between $106 and $197 to the bills of in-state undergraduates enrolled full-time at one of the system's 13 institutions and two regional learning centers. It will also mark the end of months of cooperative work between the governor, legislators and education officials. The 3 percent figure was built into the budget after conversations with the Regents and the university system, said O'Malley spokesman Shaun Adamec. All sides agreed 'the moderate increase was appropriate following four straight years of no increase,' he said."
Murphy set to present Amedori as running mate
"Long-shot Republican gubernatorial candidate Brian Murphy is planning to announce his running mate Friday, and his pick is certain to raise some eyebrows," reports The Post's John Wagner. "Carmen M. Amedori, a former state delegate from Carroll County who has been running for U.S. Senate, will be joining the ticket as Murphy's lieutenant governor candidate, Murphy confirmed Thursday. Amedori was plucked from the legislature in 2004 by then-Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. (R) to serve on the state parole commission. Ehrlich, of course, is now seeking the GOP nomination again himself, with the expectation of challenging Gov. Martin O'Malley (D) in November. Murphy has confirmed the pick. 'She likes the message, and she loves the state,' he said of Amedori, adding that her experience in the legislature and on the parole commission will be invaluable. In a separate interview, Amedori said she and Murphy are in the race to win and suggested Ehrlich is vulnerable in a GOP primary. 'He's not the frontrunner with the conservative base,' she said."
"It's official. Despite Maryland's making progress in some of the toughest of times, Bob Ehrlich has announced his grudge match,or shall we say rematch, in his effort to try to take Maryland back."
-- Gov. Martin O'Malley (D), in a video clip that appears on his Facebook site soliciting donations to his campaign
"I'm not necessarily buying into the predicate that it has to be paid for," Ehrlich said. "I don't buy into the idea that when you tax a good or service at a higher level you're going to get more dollars because typically you're going to get less dollars."
-- Former governor Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. (R), when asked by a reporter how he would pay for his proposed cut in the state sales tax
"They completed this year's 90-day session without doing serious harm to Maryland or tackling the state's major problems."
-- Gazette columnist Barry Rascovar, assessing the impact of the 2010 legislative session
"I went to a luncheon and the speaker was Governor Ehrlich and the basis of his speech was it was going to take a businessman to beat Martin O'Malley. I was baffled by his comments. To my knowledge, Governor Ehrlich has never been a businessman. And it dawned on me he was talking about Brian Murphy."
-- Carmen Amedori, a former delegate who will be named Friday as Murphy's running mate for the GOP nomination for governor and lieutenant governor
Trust First Click for critical news and analysis you need to navigate Maryland politics. Each weekday, First Click brings you The Agenda, a concise, forward-looking analysis of the day's top development in politics or policy. "News You Should Know" breaks down top stories from across the state. And Look Ahead, Unspun, News Makers, and Week in Review keep you up to speed with power brokers in Annapolis and beyond. Want First Click on the go? Sign up for our free e-mail edition, and get the news delivered to your inbox or mobile device.
Aaron C. Davis
April 16, 2010; 6:45 AM ET
Categories: Aaron C. Davis , First Click , John Wagner
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