August 9, 2010

State Roundup, August 9, 2010

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PALIN EFFECT: John Wagner of the Washington Post reports that just a few months ago, Brian Murphy’s friends would roam the halls of the Maryland State House, practically begging reporters to go outside for news conferences by the unknown Republican candidate for governor. Then he got Sarah Palin’s endorsement.

DNA ARRESTS: Gov. Martin O’Malley touts 267 arrests based solely on DNA analysis, reports the Post’s John Wagner.

ABSENTEE BALLOTS: A new system launched last week will allow Maryland voters, even those overseas or in the military, to print out absentee ballots online, a topic that became a side issue in the race for governor, writes Megan Poinski for MarylandReporter.com. And Maryland’s application for exemption from sending out absentee ballots 45 days in advance has a lot to do with following deadlines established before the new federal law, State Board of Elections officials tell The Capital’s Liam Farrell.

DELLA RACE: Two political eras are battling it out for the Democratic nomination for state Senate on Baltimore’s waterfront: longtime incumbent George Della and political novice Bill Ferguson, Annie Linskey of the Sun reports.

HOWARD RACES: Sigaty vs Klein/Bobo vs Bailey: Can voters figure it out? Larry Carson of the Sun looks at the views of the candidates in those Democratic primary races. And Carson writes in his Political Notebook that the upcoming Howard County candidates forums give voice to predictable themes; County Exec Ulman opens campaign headquarters and Councilman Ball could run unopposed.

UNAFFILIATED IN 4A: Delegate candidate Scott Guenthner will be the first unaffiliated Frederick County name on the ballot in more than 20 years, reports Meg Tully for the News Post.

BALTO CO EXEC: Baltimore County exec hopefuls are meeting people in each other’s neighborhoods searching for support at the ballot box, writes the Sun’s Arthur Hirsch.

JESSAMY’S RESPONSE: Baltimore State’s Attorney Patricia Jessamy calls police commissioner Frederick Bealefeld III’s decision to place her opponent’s sign in his yard “unprecedented and inappropriate,” blogs the Sun’s Peter Hermann. Here’s Hermann’s full story. WBAL reports the story here. Richard Vatz blogs his support for Bealefeld on Red Maryland.

SIGN FIGHT: A federal judge heard arguments challenging the constitutionality of Baltimore County’s laws about how large campaign signs can be and how long they can be displayed, Arthur Hirsch blogs for The Sun. Here’s Hirsch’s story. The ruling is scheduled to come this week, Bryan Sears reports for Patuxent Publishing.

SLOTS REFERENDUM: Some opponents of the proposed Arundel Mills casino worry because the referendum question on the November ballot will not contain the words “Arundel Mills,” reports Erin Cox of The Capital.

TBD LAUNCHES: TBD.com, the new Washington news website from Albritton Communications you may have read about, launched this morning. Here’s a letter from editor Erik Wemple about the site. TBD General Manager Jim Brady will be on News Channel 8 — being rebranded as TBD TV — at 10 a.m. today. MarylandReporter.com is part of the TBD Community Network.

CARROLL COUNTY: Maintaining the proper balance among development, preservation and environmental issues is key to election politics and the local economy, writes The Carroll County Times’ Marc Shapiro. Board of Commissioner candidates discuss the issues with Adam Bednar. And Charles Schelle and Jim Joyner of the Carroll Eagle take a bead on the primary races for Board of Commissioners.

PG VETO: Prince George’s County Executive Jack Johnson issued his second veto in eight years, rejecting a bill that would expand the number of taxis in the county, reports the Post’s Miranda Spivak.

WYNN FINED: Former Rep. Al Wynn had been fined $8,000 for using money earmarked for the General Election for his 2008 primary campaign against Rep. Donna Edwards, reports The Gazette’s Daniel Valentine.

FORECLOSURE MEDIATION: The new law allowing for mediation before home foreclosures is much needed in Washington County, reports The Herald-Mail’s Arnold Platou.

SCHOOL SALARIES: Calum McKinney of The Daily Times analyzes Wicomoco County’s public school funds and salaries.

CLEAN THE CHESAPEAKE: The Choose Clean Water Coalition is spreading the word about reducing pollution that eventually goes into the Chesapeake watershed, reports Kevin Spradlin of the Cumberland Times-News.