State Roundup, July 12, 2018

Gov. Hogan backs former foe Ron George for state Senate as Republicans “Drive for Five” to get critical 19 votes in Senate to block veto overrides; Nancy Floreen jumps into Montgomery County exec race as independent to offer alternative to “flawed extremes;” Comptroller Franchot says sports betting issue should wait till new session starts instead of allowing “lame duck” lawmakers to handle it; U.S. Congress pauses to honor slain Capital Gazette employees as plans get under way for memorial, press freedom festival; with Liz Walsh winning by a whisper, Howard County Council to have all new members; and Hagerstown mayor rethinks labeling London mayor a “terrorist,” apologizes.

State Roundup, July 11, 2018

The recount in Democratic primary for Baltimore County executive will begin Thursday; former state Sen. Oaks asks judge for 18-month prison sentence as opposed to eight to 10 years recommended; GOP opponent to Comptroller Franchot files ethics complaint over his embossed medallions; U.S. Rep. Hoyer released from hospital after bout with pneumonia; Hagerstown Mayor Bruchey labels London’s Muslim mayor a “terrorist;” Maryland falls six spots to No. 31 in latest business friendly state ranking; and in Baltimore County school news: embattled interim Super Verletta White gets a one-year contract and board candidate Peter Beilenson drops out of race to take job in California.

State Roundup, July 10, 2018

President Trump picks conservative Marylander Brett Kavanaugh, a appellate judge, to serve on the Supreme Court as Democrats begin to find fault; Montgomery business leaders look to potential independent candidate Nancy Floreen instead of progressive Dem Marc Elrich as Montgomery County exec hopeful to back, but Dems see problem with splitting their votes between the two; Jim Brochin to file for recount in Baltimore County exec race; recounts expected in other tight races in Howard, Anne Arundel and Montgomery counties; extensive repairs to Lawyers Mall means Thurgood Marshall statue will have to be moved; and slain journalist Wendi Winters charged shooter, saving others’ lives.

State Roundup, July 9, 2018

With 9 vote lead, Del. Olszewski declared winner in Baltimore County executive race; state Sen. Brochin plans to seek a recount; in Montgomery County exec race, Marc Elrich wins by 80 votes; HoCo Council incumbent loses by 2 votes; African American establishment cautiously optimistic on Progressive’s Ben Jealous’ chances to beat Gov. Hogan; Hogan releases three years of tax returns, which show he made $2.4 million, most from real estate business; elections board, MVA agree on exact number of voters with errors in registration; state investigating complaint by ex-employees of pesticide use at medical marijuana grower; as waters rise, Smith Islanders rely on government-built jetties, God to protect their homes; Del. Washington claims victory over Sen. Carter Conway; and Schuh-Pittman race for Arundel County executive hits the ground running.

State Roundup, July 6, 2018

With provisional, absentee ballots still uncounted, gap closes in Elrich-Blair race for Montgomery executive; Howard County Council incumbent now only four votes ahead; transportation group says state’s BaltimoreLink bus service falls short of state plans for reliable service; special session on sports betting more likely; despite President Trump’s announcement rescinding Obama era order on race, UM to continue commitment to diverse student population; newsrooms around the country observe moment of silence in honor of slain Capital Gazette staffers; and the brother of a candidate for House of Delegates is arrested after threatening her.

State Roundup, July 5, 2018

Ben Jealous challenges Gov. Hogan over commitment to women’s reproductive rights as President Trump on verge of nominating SCOTUS pick; Google stops accepting state and local political ads in Maryland; Maryland can company seeks exclusion from Trump steel tariffs; state looks to recruiter to fill 1,000 corrections positions; Rep. Sarbanes confirms that Trump initially refused to request on lowering flags to honor slain Capital Gazette employees; U.S. Rep. Hoyer being treated for pneumonia; Montgomery County exec nominee Robin Ficker to get public campaign funds after all; and a former Prince George’s councilman to retake his seat.

State Roundup, July 3, 2018

Pretrial jail population in Prince George’s rose after bail reform, new study finds; President Trump OKs disaster aid for Ellicott City, other Maryland towns impacted by May storms; retired state employees given two months to switch prescription drug programs; park panel asks Supreme Court to hear Bladensburg Cross case; Democratic Comptroller Franchot won’t endorse Ben Jealous for governor; two independents seek county executive ballot spots: Earl Robbins in Frederick and Nancy Floreen in Montgomery; GOP candidate for Montgomery exec Robin Ficker sues over public campaign financing; Capital Gazette murder suspect apparently sent three threatening letters on day of shooting; and Annapolis mayor plans press freedom celebration, fundraiser in honor of slain Capital Gazette employees.

State Roundup, July 2, 2018

As news organizations throughout the state continue to come to grips with last week’s mass murder at the Capital Gazette: we can read of first-person accounts of the shooting in the Annapolis Capital, an editorial reveals that along with the outpouring of sympathy came more death threats and cheers over the murders, a Salon writer draws a line between the suspect and his sympathies for League of the South ideology, and WYPR-FM gives a summation of all the lawsuits brought by the suspect against the Capital Gazette and many connected to his harassment claims. In political news: the Bay’s blue crab population has declined again; yesterday ushered in a new minimum wage; the state Senate’s power will see a huge shift following last week’s primary; former Veep Biden joins Ben Jealous at Camden Yards rally; pundits ponder: Will progressive Jealous hurt or help the Democratic Party?; no matter who wins in November, Montgomery County’s school board will be made up of women; and Asian Americans ask Montgomery school board to sanction Lunar New Year as an official holiday.

State Roundup, June 29, 2018

Laurel man with a grudge and a gun kills five at the Capital Gazette, in what could be the deadliest attack on journalists in the United States in decades; politicians react to the attack; the dead are journalists Rob Hiaasen, Gerald Fischman, John McNamara and Wendi Winters and sales assistant Rebecca Smith; MVA glitch that forced provisional voting grows to affect 90,000 voters; Del. Washington continues to lead Sen. Carter Conway; county executive races tighten in Montgomery, Baltimore with Elrich and Olzsewski still leading but by fewer votes; Rep. Harris’s congratulations letter to interim Baltimore County Exec Mohler also lectures him; and possible Supreme Court pick from Bethesda.

State Roundup, June 28, 2018

Despite its blue hue, even Maryland Democrats might vote for Republican incumbent Gov. Larry Hogan; Hogan, Democratic rival Ben Jealous kick off the campaign by trading barbs; Rushern Baker’s gubernatorial campaign was a recipe for failure; Senate President Mike Miller lost a host of top-ranking allies, must now forge new ones; Baltimore and Montgomery counties still have no clear winner for county executive; Mary Washington won’t claim victory yet against Sen. Joan Carter Conway; Del. Lam beats Mary Kay Sigaty in race for Sen. Kasemeyer’s seat; Sen. Steve Waugh loses primary battle; Montgomery County comes up short during “Year of the Woman;” despite calls for GOP unity in Frederick County, county exec primary loser Kirby Delauter says no thanks; and in one Howard County council race, there’s a 41-vote separation.