August 11, 2010

State Roundup, August 11, 2010

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CAMPAIGN FINANCES: The campaign finance reporting period that ended yesterday will show how much a candidate has been able to raise since announcing a run for office, becoming official and diving into election season. Julie Bykowicz of the Baltimore Sun blogs that it is one way to measure just how serious a candidate is. Nick Sohr of the Daily Record reports on the last minute push of the gubernatorial candidates to fill their coffers. And Scott Dance of the Baltimore Business Journal writes about that “final flurry for fundraising.”

OBAMA VISIT: Following greetings by Gov. Martin O’Malley and House Speaker Michael Busch, first lady Michelle Obama, daughter Sasha and other presidential relatives toured Maryland’s historic State House during a day trip to Annapolis that included a stop at the  Naval Academy, Julie Bykowicz, reports for the Sun. Liam Farrell of the Annapolis Capital writes about their visit around town. Here’s Aaron Davis’ blog for the Post.

METRO LINE: O’Malley turned up in Bethesda to show his support for the Purple Line. Andrew Ujifusa reports the story for the Gazette. His major opponent, former gov Bob Ehrlich, does not support the Purple Line, writes Michael Dresser in the Sun.

COURT RECORDS: Center Maryland begins a series of background checks by looking into the court records of PG County exec candidates.

SOCIAL MEDIA: Adam Bednar of the Carroll County Times writes that ambiguity continues to complicate how election officials determine who is in compliance with new state regulations requiring authority lines on campaign social media websites.

PUBLIC FINANCING: Two former members of Congress from Maryland  — a Democrat and a Republican — opine for the Sun that public funding of campaigns could end the stranglehold of corporate and union money on Congress.

STATE SURPLUS: Maryland may close the last budget year $300 million in the black, but that’s scarcely cause for celebration — or more government spending, writes the editorial board of the Sun.

HEALTH COVERAGE: A new statewide group is looking into forming a co-op to provide health insurance for those who cannot afford to buy the coverage that will be required by federal law, Barbara Pash reports for MarylandReporter.com.

ENDORSEMENTS’ WORTH: Eric Hartley writes for the Annapolis Capital that with so many special interest groups making political endorsements, just what are they worth these days?

DISTRICT 33A: House of Delegates candidate Cathleen Vitale says Republican GOP boss Michael Steele will attend a fundraiser for her next week in Severna Park, blogs Julie Bykowicz in the Baltimore Sun.

DISTRICT 1B: House of Delegates incumbent Kevin Kelly, of District 1B, discusses issues and his track record with Kevin Spradlin of the Cumberland Times-News.

DUNCAN BACKS KING: Former Montgomery County Exec Doug Duncan has endorsed Nancy King as she runs for the District 39 seat of the state Senate, Adam Pagnucco of Maryland Politics Watch writes.

KOPP TAPPED: Alan Brody of the Gazette reports that Maryland Treasurer Nancy Kopp was elected president of the National Association of State Auditors, Comptrollers and Treasurers.

VETO OVERTURNED: Three days after PG County Exec Jack Johnson vetoed taxi industry reforms, the County Council overrode his decision at an emergency session, reports Daniel Valentine of the Gazette.

JESSAMY ON BEALEFELD: Baltimore State’s Attorney Pat Jessamy is questioning the “integrity and credibility” of city Police Commissioner Fred Bealefeld, calling for an independent investigation into whether he  solicited votes for her opponent in the Democratic primary while on duty, Justin Fenton is reporting for the Baltimore Sun. Here’s John Rydell’s video report for WBFF-TV.  Jayne Miller of WBAL-TV also reports the story. As does Brian Kuebler of WMAR-TV. And here’s the Associated Press report in the Daily Record.

AA, HOWARD RACES: In the August issue of The Business Monthly, Len Lazarick tackles local races in Howard and Anne Arundel counties. These include Del. Liz Bobo’s primary fight, the Green Party candidate for Anne Arundel executive, and the contested judges races there.

CRIME DROP: Arthur Hirsch of the Sun goes to Towson to talk with Baltimore County exec candidate Kevin Kamenetz about the drop in shopping center crime. As a councilman Kamenetz had pushed through legislation to place cameras inside malls.

SIGNS DEFACED: Fed up with a rash of recent defacement and outright theft of his campaign signs in Aberdeen, Del. Dan Riley is offering a cash reward for the arrest and conviction of those responsible. The Dagger reports the story.

CORRERI NOMINATED: The Dagger reports that former Havre de Grace Mayor John Correri has been nominated to fill a vacant city council seat.

HEALTH REFORM: Greg Latshaw of the Salisbury Daily Times reports on U.S. Sen. Ben Cardin’s visit touting health care reform to senior citizens.