BUSCH UNDERGOES BYPASS SURGERY: Maryland House Speaker Michael E. Busch (D-Anne Arundel), who has battled various health problems over the past two years, underwent heart bypass surgery Wednesday night, his office announced Thursday evening. He had undergone a routine test and based on the results, his campaign said, he underwent surgery. A fund-raiser for him last night went on without him, Josh Kurtz of Maryland Matters reports.
- The Annapolis Democrat is expected to remain hospitalized for approximately one week, Busch’s chief of staff Alexandra Hughes said Thursday. Once he is released he will be expected to remain at home and rest for one to two more weeks, Rick Hutzell of the Annapolis Capital reports.
- Busch, 71, a member of the House since 1987, had a liver transplant in June 2017. He returned to work that August, Ovetta Wiggins of the Post writes.
- Busch recently attended an endorsement event for Ben Jealous, the Democratic Party nominee for governor, in Prince George’s County. During that event, the Annapolis Democrat took multiple breaks in the front seat of his vehicle, Bryan Sears of the Daily Record writes.
ED UNIONS SUES HOGAN CAMP OVER APPLE: The teachers unions of Maryland and Montgomery County want a judge to block Gov. Larry Hogan from using an apple logo on his campaign materials to suggest support from teachers in the state, Luke Broadwater of the Sun reports. They plan to file a lawsuit this morning in Montgomery County. A draft of the suit that the unions released Thursday to media outlets outlines their request for a restraining order against the Republican governor that would stop him from using logos similar to the unions’ “apple ballot” image
- The suit seeks a temporary injunction against the Hogan campaign. The union also asks the court to issue a permanent prohibition against using the logo or campaign materials containing the logo and an order requiring the Hogan campaign to destroy any campaign materials using the logo.
GROUP STEPS UP FOR JEALOUS: An outside group is trying to come to the rescue of Democrat Ben Jealous’ outgunned media campaign with a TV ad linking Republican Gov. Larry Hogan to the policies of U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos and President Donald Trump, Michael Dresser of the Sun reports. The 30-second commercial from Maryland Together We Rise is part of what the group says will be a $1 million independent campaign in support of Jealous between now and the November election.
- Maryland Together We Rise, which is largely financed by unions and wealthy individual donors, is launching its effort Friday with a $175,000 advertisement attacking Hogan’s record on education, Ovetta Wiggins of the Post reports.
JEALOUS’s BIG SHOT: In an opinion column, Sun media critic David Zurawik writes that Ben Jealous better have a great debate Monday at Maryland Public Television. “In three decades of writing about media and politics, I have seen few campaigns at the level of governor as weak as the one Jealous has been running since he won the Democratic primary in June.”
STATE WORKPLACE HARASSMENT POLICIES: A commission formed to examine workplace harassment policies in state government in the wake of the #MeToo movement is close to finalizing recommendations, Danielle Gaines reports for Maryland Matters. The recommendations focus on changing culture, increasing awareness and training, and making changes to state law and policy to keep in line with nationally recognized best practices.
REDMER GETS MBRG BACKING: As he picked up an endorsement from a pro-business group Thursday, Baltimore County executive candidate Al Redmer Jr. blasted his opponent, Johnny Olszewski Jr., for previously voting for tax increases, Pamela Wood of the Sun reports. “I’m a business guy. That’s what I do, that’s how I think,” said Redmer, a Republican, as he accepted an endorsement from Maryland Business for Responsive Government.
GLENDENING, EHRLICH TALK MODERATION: Former Govs. Parris Glendening (D) and Bob Ehrlich (R) have joined forced to go around the state to talk about the need to moderation in politics, writes Bryan Sears for the Daily Record. In recent years, Glendening and Ehrlich have found themselves working on parallel tracks on some issues, including criminal justice reform. The efforts have led to them speaking together — their appearance Thursday at the chamber’s conference being the third such “traveling road show” — to talk about the state of politics and the death of moderation.
- The two former politicians reminisced on the past and painted a murky picture about the current state of politics — but they didn’t throw any punches or end up calling each other any names. They acknowledged it’s easier for them to have an “honest conversation” because they are no longer in power, Holden Wilen of the Baltimore Business Journal writes.
WA CO COMMISSIONER DEBATE: Dozens turned out Thursday night to hear the 11 candidates for Washington County commissioner talk about issues ranging from opioid addiction to economic development to support for local schools during a forum sponsored by the League of Women Voters of Washington County, Tamela Baker of the Hagerstown Herald-Mail reports.
BA CO MUST REPAY OVER PENSIONS: A federal appeals court ruled Wednesday that Baltimore County must pay back employees who were forced to overpay into the county’s pension system for years, Pamela Wood of the Sun is reporting. A lower court will determine how much the county would have to reimburse older workers who, until 2007, were charged more for pension contributions than younger workers. The county has previously estimated it could be on the hook for up to $19 million.