TOPS IN WEALTH: Maryland is tied for third place with Connecticut as one of the top wealthiest states, but continues to rank as the state with the highest household incomes, according to a new rankings produced by WalletHub. Just last month, 24/7Wall St., a financial news web site, called Maryland “the wealthiest state in the nation,” based on those high incomes, writes Len Lazarick for MarylandReporter.com. According to a different study, for a third year in the row, Maryland has the highest percentage of millionaires — people with over $1 million in investable assets, not people who make that much money each year.
FOR FRACKING BAN: A majority of Marylanders say natural gas hydraulic fracturing poses serious environmental concerns and would support banning its use in the state, reports Bryan Sears for the Daily Record. The results are part of a new statewide poll conducted by the Sarah T. Hughes Field Politics Center at Goucher College that gauged concerns about environmental issues including the controversial process commonly called fracking as well as the health of the Chesapeake Bay.
CONCERNED WOMEN: Mileah Kromer of the Sarah T. Hughes Field Politics Center at Goucher writes in Center Maryland that Goucher’ recent poll of Maryland residents indicates that two-thirds of all Marylanders are concerned over a potential outbreak of a disease like Ebola. Kromer, who says she is an avid hand washer, a connoisseur of all pandemic-related movies and television, and the pollster to boot, found this result was of immediate interest.
CLOSER RACE: The race for governor in deep-blue Maryland is much closer than expected, with one analyst saying Democrat Anthony Brown is vulnerable because he tiptoed around the big issues and failed to make an argument for his election other than he’s next in line, writes S.A. Miller in the Washington Times.
SWINGING BALTIMORE COUNTY: Baltimore County may once again be Maryland’s swing district: Republican in one cycle, Democratic in the next, opines Fraser Smith for WYPR.
FACT-CHECKING: The Sun fact-checks assertions made during the first of three televised gubernatorial debates, including Hogan’s contention that the biggest threat to the Chesapeake Bay is sediment pollution from other states that flows down the Susquehanna River.
- Jenna Johnson of the Post fact-checks Hogan’s assertion that the state’s No. 1 crime problem is heroin — and that the administration of Gov. Martin O’Malley (D) “has done nothing and hasn’t taken action.”
- Brown repeatedly said during a gubernatorial debate Tuesday that Hogan would cut $450 million from school construction funding if elected governor. Jenna Johnson of the Post fact-checks the assertion.
HOGAN CRITICIZES MODERATORS: Following the first Maryland gubernatorial debate on Tuesday, Republican Larry Hogan continued to criticize his Democratic opponent — and also took a swipe at the moderators, writes John Wagner for the Post.
NO K-O:In assessing the first televised debate between Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown and businessman Larry Hogan, the editorial board for the Sun, said neither threw a knock-out punch or delivered the self-defining speech that won the day in this race for governor. It’s a good thing there are two more debates to go.
- Trying to unravel the claims, accusations, distortions, fog and evasion of this week’s gubernatorial debate might have left your head spinning, but it certainly did not give you a better basis for choosing between the two candidates, opines Laslo Boyd for Center Maryland.
O’MALLEY LOSES: Maryland’s first gubernatorial debate Tuesday yielded no clear-cut winner but did serve up one obvious loser: Gov. Martin O’Malley, writes Post pundit Robert McCartney.
HOGAN HEDGES OPPOSITION: Republican gubernatorial candidate Larry Hogan indicated Wednesday that his opposition to state financing of the construction of Baltimore’s Red Line and another large transit project doesn’t necessarily mean forever, reports Michael Dresser in the Sun. Hogan continued to insist, as he has since launching his campaign, that the state cannot afford to begin building the $2.6 billion Red Line and $2.4 billion Purple Line In the Washington suburbs at this time.
GAS PRICES COULD STILL RISE: Despite the emphatic pledge Tuesday by Democrat Anthony Brown that he would not raise taxes, Marylanders could still expect to pay more at the pump if he is elected governor, reports John Wagner for the Post. That’s because Brown’s promise, made repeatedly during a gubernatorial debate with Republican Larry Hogan, does not apply to actions already taken by the legislature, his campaign said Wednesday.
LT. GOV. DEBATE SET: The Democrat and Republican running to be lieutenant governor have agreed to debate on a Washington radio show next week, the first publicly broadcast showdown between the men vying to be No. 2 in the next administration, the Sun’s Erin Cox reports.
- Democrat Ken Ulman and Republican Boyd Rutherford, the two major-party lieutenant governor candidates in Maryland, have agreed to debate next Thursday on “The Kojo Nnamdi Show” on WAMU-FM, John Wagner writes in the Post.
WiFi, THE OTHER HUMAN RIGHT: Philip Bump of the Fix in the Washington Post writes that “WiFi,” Maryland governor and (vice) presidential candidate Martin O’Malley (D) told CNN, “is a human right.” He was putting those words into the mouths of the nebulous group known as “young people,” but it’s clear that O’Malley agrees with the sentiment.
BACK TO IOWA: Gov. Martin O’Malley is headed back to Iowa this weekend for his fourth visit to the early presidential nominating state since June, writes John Wagner in the Post. O’Malley, who is weighing what could be a long-shot 2016 White House bid, has events both Saturday and Sunday with candidates on the November ballot in Iowa, according to an itinerary released by aides.
MATHIAS, McDERMOTT SQUARE OFF: Candidates in the District 38 Senate race shared their views on everything from job creation to the environment Wednesday at a forum in Ocean City, reports Charlene Sharpe for the Salisbury Daily Times. Sen. Jim Mathias, a Democrat, and his challenger, Del. Mike McDermott, R-38B, touted their own voting records and criticized each other’s during the two-hour forum hosted by the Ocean City chapter of AARP.
DELEGATE CANDIDATE ADMITS ERROR: A Baltimore County candidate for the House of Delegates acknowledged this week he wrote checks from his campaign account, a violation of campaign finance law that resulted in a $2,500 fine, Pamela Wood writes in the Sun. Jay Jalisi, a Democrat running to represent western Baltimore County, wrote 28 checks from his campaign account from February through April, according to the Office of the State Prosecutor.
FREDERICK HOPEFULS EYE JOBS: Bringing jobs and economic growth to Frederick County dominated Wednesday’s forum featuring seven candidates running for county executive and County Council, Paige Jones writes for the Frederick News Post.